Lessons From Lent: Day Four

21 Feb

creation swap lessons from lent coffee cup Kelly Sikkema 22940

An Explanation of Lessons from Lent

In the next 40 days (37 now because you have already accomplished three), the weeks leading up to Easter, the posts on Glimpsed Glory will be different. I am reading through the New Testament during this time and I am hoping the Holy Spirit will lead me to a fresh revelation each and every day. I’m going into it with a prayerful heart and an expectant spirit but I will fully confess to you that my soul feels sluggish.

I have been in a place of exhaustion over these last months. My mind has been clouded, my body has ached and insomnia has been my companion since late December. The enemy has been and is still whispering in my ear that my Jesus has forgotten me . . . that He has finally tired of my imperfections and left me behind.

I’m not giving in to it! I am going to fight the good fight of faith and follow the example of my Nehemiah Man. I am going to stand firm in my faith because if I do not, I will not stand at all. I’m praising God for bringing me to a place of emptiness so that I can look to Him to fill my cup.

I’m coming before the Lord and I’m asking Him to do a new thing in me. To rouse my heart to His side and to draw me near in real and tangible ways. To plow through the fog that has settled over me in the form of health issues, physical stress, and emotional upheaval and lay a level path before me. I’m entering the throne room and I’m humbly reminding Him that He has invited me to come in my time of need. O Lord – be near to me. Love me where I am. Take me where I need to be.

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That’s the cry of my heart Sweet Sister and I’m thinking that if I am in this place that perhaps you are too. It might be that different life situations have brought us here but here we are. If that’s the case, I want you to know that you are not alone and that you have a faith sister to walk through it with. We can do this together – you and I. It’s why God gave us to one another. We can join our hearts and we can offer up the next 40 days to the Beautiful One and trust Him to do the beautiful thing in us.

So here’s what I’ll do. I’ll post the daily reading on the blog (except for Sundays) and if you read the Scriptures not only will you have read through the entire New Testament by Easter but God promises that He’ll show you deep and unsearchable things you do not know. He promises that His word is alive and active and will transform your heart. I could use some transformation. What about you?

At the end of the daily passage, I’m going to share my “Lesson from Lent” – nothing long or drawn out just something that God uses to speak straight to my heart from the Scripture that day. I’m putting it at the end because if your time runs short on a particular day – I want you to skip reading my words, not His.

I’m hoping that you’ll start your own running record of what God is showing you. Maybe you’ll even be moved to leave a comment so your Sisters can glean from what you’re learning. No matter how you choose to keep track of all He shares with you . . . treasure it up in your heart Sweet One, meditate on it, mull it over, consider the whisper of the Lover of your soul. The God of the Universe is the only Voice we need to revive our tired souls. So, let’s you and I lean in close, pray for ears to hear and hearts to respond. Let’s dig in to the riches He has given us and prepare to be amazed by what He will reveal to our expectant hearts. O Sister, let’s boldly ask Him for a lesson from Lent and then brace ourselves for a glimpse of Glory!

Day Four

February 21, 2015 ~~ Matthew 19-24

Amplified Bible

Footnotes: I’ve left the footnotes in place if you would like to track down sources in word study and language. Please follow the link to each chapter and scroll to the bottom of the passage.

Matthew 19

Now when Jesus had finished saying these things, He left Galilee and went into the part of Judea that is beyond the Jordan; And great throngs accompanied Him, and He cured them there.

And Pharisees came to Him and put Him to the test by asking, Is it lawful and right to dismiss and repudiate and divorce one’s wife for any and [a]every cause? He replied, Have you never read that He Who made them from the beginning made them male and female, And said, For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and shall be united firmly (joined inseparably) to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let not man put asunder (separate).

They said to Him, Why then did Moses command [us] to give a certificate of divorce and thus to dismiss and repudiate a wife? He said to them, Because of the hardness (stubbornness and perversity) of your hearts Moses permitted you to dismiss and repudiate and divorce your wives; but from the beginning it has not been [b]so [ordained]. I say to you: whoever dismisses (repudiates, divorces) his wife, except for unchastity, and marries another commits adultery, [c]and he who marries a divorced woman commits adultery.

10 The disciples said to Him, If the case of a man with his wife is like this, it is neither profitable nor advisable to marry. 11 But He said to them, Not all men can accept this saying, but it is for those to whom [the capacity to receive] it has been given. 12 For there are eunuchs who have been born incapable of marriage; and there are eunuchs who have been made so by men; and there are eunuchs who have made themselves incapable of marriage for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. Let him who is able to accept this accept it.

13 Then little children were brought to Jesus, that He might put His hands on them and pray; but the disciples rebuked those who brought them. 14 But He said, Leave the children alone! Allow the little ones to come to Me, and do not forbid or restrain or hinder them, for of such [as these] is the kingdom of heaven composed. 15 And He put His hands upon them, and then went on His way.

16 And behold, there came a man up to Him, saying, Teacher, what excellent and perfectly and essentially good deed must I do to possess eternal life? 17 And He said to him, Why do you ask Me about the perfectly and essentially good? There is only One Who is good [perfectly and essentially]—God. If you would enter into the Life, you must continually keep the commandments. 18 He said to Him, What [d]sort of commandments? [Or, which ones?] And Jesus answered, You shall not kill, You shall not commit adultery, You shall not steal, You shall not bear false witness, 19 Honor your father and your mother, and, You shall love your neighbor as [you do] yourself. 20 The young man said, I have observed all these from my youth; what still do I lack? 21 Jesus answered him, If you would be perfect [that is, [e]have that spiritual maturity which accompanies self-sacrificing character], go and sell what you have and give to the poor, and you will have riches in heaven; and come, [f]be My disciple [side with My party and follow Me]. 22 But when the young man heard this, he went away sad (grieved and in much distress), for he had great possessions.

23 And Jesus said to His disciples, Truly I say to you, it will be difficult for a rich man to get into the kingdom of heaven. 24 Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to go into the kingdom of heaven. 25 When the disciples heard this, they were utterly puzzled (astonished, bewildered), saying, Who then can be saved [[g]from eternal death]? 26 But Jesus looked at them and said, With men this is impossible, but all things are possible with God.

27 Then Peter answered Him, saying, Behold, we have left [our] all and have become [h]Your disciples [sided with Your party and followed You]. What then shall we receive? 28 Jesus said to them, Truly I say to you, in the new age [the [i]Messianic rebirth of the world], when the Son of Man shall sit down on the throne of His glory, you who have [become My disciples, sided with My party and] followed Me will also sit on twelve thrones and judge the twelve tribes of Israel. 29 And anyone and everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands for My name’s sake will receive [j]many [even a hundred] times more and will inherit eternal life. 30 But many who [now] are first will be last [then], and many who [now] are last will be first [then].

Matthew 20

For the kingdom of heaven is like the owner of an estate who went out in the morning [a]along with the dawn to hire workmen for his vineyard. After agreeing with the laborers for a denarius a day, he sent them into his vineyard. And going out about the third hour (nine o’clock), he saw others standing idle in the marketplace; And he said to them, You go also into the vineyard, and whatever is right I will pay you. And they went.

He went out again about the sixth hour (noon), and the ninth hour (three o’clock) he did the same. And about the eleventh hour (five o’clock) he went out and found still others standing around, and said to them, Why do you stand here idle all day? They answered him, Because nobody has hired us. He told them, You go out into the vineyard also [b]and you will get whatever is just and fair.

When evening came, the owner of the vineyard said to his manager, Call the workmen and pay them their wages, beginning with the last and ending with the first. And those who had been hired at the eleventh hour (five o’clock) came and received a denarius each. 10 Now when the first came, they supposed they would get more, but each of them also received a denarius. 11 And when they received it, they grumbled at the owner of the estate, 12 Saying, These [men] who came last worked no more than an hour, and yet you have made them rank with us who have borne the burden and the [c]scorching heat of the day. 13 But he answered one of them, Friend, I am doing you no injustice. Did you not agree with me for a denarius? 14 Take what belongs to you and go. I choose to give to this man hired last the same as I give to you. 15 Am I not permitted to do what I choose with what is mine? [Or do you begrudge my being generous?] Is your eye evil because I am good? 16 So those who [now] are last will be first [then], and those who [now] are first will be last [then]. [d]For many are called, but few chosen.

17 And as Jesus was going up to Jerusalem, He took the twelve disciples aside along the way and said to them, 18 Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be handed over to the chief priests and scribes; and they will sentence Him to death 19 And deliver Him over to the Gentiles to be mocked and whipped and crucified, and He will be raised [to life] on the third day.

20 Then the mother of Zebedee’s children came up to Him with her sons and, kneeling, worshiped Him and asked a favor of Him. 21 And He asked her, What do you wish? She answered Him, Give orders that these two sons of mine may sit, one at Your right hand and one at Your left in Your kingdom. 22 But Jesus replied, You do not realize what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I am about to drink [e]and to be baptized with the baptism with which I am baptized? They answered, We are able. 23 He said to them, You will drink My cup, but seats at My right hand and at My left are not Mine to give, but they are for those for whom they have been [f]ordained and prepared by My Father.

24 But when the ten [other disciples] heard this, they were indignant at the two brothers. 25 And Jesus called them to Him and said, You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great men hold them in subjection [tyrannizing over them]. 26 Not so shall it be among you; but whoever wishes to be great among you must be your servant, 27 And whoever desires to be first among you must be your slave— 28 Just as the Son of Man came not to be waited on but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many [the price paid to set them free].

29 And as they were going out of Jericho, a great throng accompanied Him. 30 And behold, two blind men were sitting by the roadside, and when they heard that Jesus was passing by, they cried out, Lord, have pity and mercy on us, [You] Son of David! 31 The crowds reproved them and told them to keep still; but they cried out all the more, Lord, have pity and mercy on us, [You] Son of David! 32 And Jesus stopped and called them, and asked, What do you want Me to do for you? 33 They answered Him, Lord, we want our eyes to be opened! 34 And Jesus, in pity, touched their eyes; and instantly they received their sight and followed Him.

Matthew 21

And when they came near Jerusalem and had reached Bethphage at the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples on ahead, Saying to them, Go into the village that is opposite you, and at once you will find a donkey tied, and a colt with her; untie [them] and bring [them] to Me. If anyone says anything to you, you shall reply, The Lord needs them, and he will let them go without delay. This happened that what was spoken by the prophet might be fulfilled, saying, Say to the Daughter of Zion [inhabitants of Jerusalem], Behold, your King is coming to you, lowly and riding on a donkey, and on a colt, the foal of a donkey [a beast of burden]. Then the disciples went and did as Jesus had directed them. They brought the donkey and the colt and laid their coats upon them, and He seated Himself on them [the clothing].

And most of the crowd kept spreading their garments on the road, and others kept cutting branches from the trees and scattering them on the road. And the crowds that went ahead of Him and those that followed Him kept shouting, Hosanna ([a]O be propitious, graciously inclined) to the Son of David, [[b]the Messiah]! Blessed (praised, glorified) is He Who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna (O be favorably disposed) in the highest [heaven]!

10 And when He entered Jerusalem, all the city became agitated and [c][trembling with excitement] said, Who is [d]This? 11 And the crowds replied, This is the prophet Jesus from Nazareth of Galilee.

12 And Jesus went into the temple ([e]whole temple enclosure) and drove out all who bought and sold in the [f]sacred place, and He turned over the [g]four-footed tables of the money changers and the chairs of those who sold doves. 13 He said to them, The Scripture says, My house shall be called a house of prayer; but you have made it a den of robbers.

14 And the blind and the lame came to Him in the [h]porches and courts of the temple, and He cured them. 15 But when the chief priests and the scribes saw the wonderful things that He did and the boys and the girls and the [i]youths and the maidens crying out in the [j]porches and courts of the temple, Hosanna (O be propitious, graciously inclined) to the Son of David! they were indignant. 16 And they said to Him, Do You hear what these are saying? And Jesus replied to them, Yes; have you never read, Out of the mouths of babes and unweaned infants You have made (provided) perfect praise? 17 And leaving them, He departed from the city and went out to Bethany and lodged there.

18 In the early dawn the next morning, as He was coming back to the city, He was hungry. 19 And as He saw [k]one single leafy fig tree [l]above the roadside, He went to it but He found nothing but leaves on it [[m]seeing that in the fig tree the fruit appears at the same time as the leaves]. And He said to it, Never again shall fruit grow on you! And the fig tree withered up at once. 20 When the disciples saw it, they marveled greatly and asked, How is it that the fig tree has withered away all at once?

21 And Jesus answered them, Truly I say to you, if you have faith (a [n]firm relying trust) and do not doubt, you will not only do what has been done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, Be taken up and cast into the sea, it will be done. 22 And whatever you ask for in prayer, having faith and [really] believing, you will receive.

23 And when He entered the sacred [o]enclosure of the temple, the chief priests and elders of the people came up to Him as He was teaching and said, By what [p]power of authority are You doing these things, and who gave You this power of authority? 24 Jesus answered them, I also will ask you a question, and if you give Me the answer, then I also will tell you by what [q]power of authority I do these things. 25 The baptism of John—from where was it? From heaven or from men? And they reasoned and argued with one another, If we say, From heaven, [r]He will ask us, Why then did you not believe him? 26 But if we say, From men—we are afraid of and must reckon with the multitude, for they all regard John as a prophet. 27 So they answered Jesus, We do not know. And He said to them, Neither will I tell you by what [s]power of authority I do these things.

28 What do you think? There was a man who had two sons. He came to the first and said, Son, go and work today in the vineyard. 29 And he answered, I will not; but afterward he changed his mind and went. 30 Then the man came to the second and said the same [thing]. And he replied, I will [go], sir; but he did not go. 31 Which of the two did the will of the father? They replied, The first one. Jesus said to them, Truly I tell you, the tax collectors and the harlots will get into the kingdom of heaven before you. 32 For John came to you walking in the way of an upright man in right standing with God, and you did not believe him, but the tax collectors and the harlots did believe him; and you, even when you saw that, did not afterward change your minds and believe him [adhere to, trust in, and rely on what he told you].

33 Listen to another parable: There was a master of a house who planted a vineyard and put a hedge around it and dug a wine vat in it and built a watchtower. Then he let it out [for rent] to tenants and went into another country. 34 When the fruit season drew near, he sent his servants to the tenants to get his [share of the] fruit. 35 But the tenants took his servants and beat one, killed another, and stoned another.36 Again he sent other servants, more than the first time, and they treated them the same way.37 Finally he sent his own son to them, saying, They will respect and give heed to my son. 38 But when the tenants saw the son, they said to themselves, This is the heir; come on, let us kill him and have his inheritance. 39 And they took him and threw him out of the vineyard and killed him. 40 Now when the owner of the vineyard comes back, what will he do to those tenants?

41 They said to Him, He will put those wretches to a miserable death and rent the vineyard to other tenants [t]of such a character that they will give him the fruits promptly in their season. 42 Jesus asked them, Have you never read in the Scriptures: The very Stone which the builders rejected and threw away has become the Cornerstone; this is the Lord’s doing, and it is marvelous in our eyes? 43 I tell you, for this reason the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people who will produce the fruits of it. 44 [u]And whoever falls on this Stone will be broken to pieces, but he on whom It falls will be crushed to powder [and It will [v]winnow him, [w]scattering him like dust].

45 And when the chief priests and the Pharisees heard His parables (comparisons, stories used to illustrate and explain), they perceived that He was talking about them. 46 And although they were trying to arrest Him, they feared the throngs because they regarded Him as a prophet

Matthew 22

And again Jesus spoke to them in parables (comparisons, stories used to illustrate and explain), saying, The kingdom of heaven is like a king who gave a wedding banquet for his son And sent his servants to summon those who had been invited to the wedding banquet, but they refused to come. Again he sent other servants, saying, Tell those who are invited, Behold, I have prepared my banquet; my bullocks and my fat calves are killed, and everything is prepared; come to the wedding feast.

But they were not concerned and paid no attention [they ignored and made light of the summons, treating it with contempt] and they went away—one to his farm, another to his business, While the others seized his servants, treated them shamefully, and put them to death. [Hearing this] the king was infuriated; and he sent his soldiers and put those murderers to death and burned their city.

Then he said to his servants, The wedding [feast] is prepared, but those invited were not worthy. So go to the thoroughfares where they leave the city [where the main roads and those from the country end] and invite to the wedding feast as many as you find. 10 And those servants went out on the crossroads and got together as many as they found, both bad and good, so [the room in which] the wedding feast [was held] was filled with guests.

11 But when the king came in to view the guests, he looked intently at a man there who had on no wedding garment. 12 And he said, Friend, how did you come in here without putting on the [appropriate] wedding garment? And he was speechless ([a]muzzled, gagged). 13 Then the king said to the attendants, Tie him hand and foot, and throw him into the darkness outside; there will be weeping and grinding of teeth. 14 For many are called (invited and summoned), but few are chosen.

15 Then the Pharisees went and consulted and plotted together how they might entangle Jesus in His talk. 16 And they sent their disciples to Him along with the Herodians, saying, Teacher, we know that You are [b]sincere and what You profess to be and that You teach the way of God truthfully, regardless of consequences and being afraid of no man; for You are impartial and do not regard either the person or the position of anyone. 17 Tell us then what You think about this: Is it lawful to pay tribute [levied on individuals and to be paid yearly] to Caesar or not?

18 But Jesus, aware of their malicious plot, asked, Why do you put Me to the test and try to entrap Me, you pretenders (hypocrites)? 19 Show me the money used for the tribute. And they brought Him a denarius. 20 And Jesus said to them, Whose likeness and title are these? 21 They said, Caesar’s. Then He said to them, Pay therefore to Caesar the things that are due to Caesar, and pay to God the things that are due to God. 22 When they heard it they were amazed and marveled; and they left Him and departed.

23 The same day some Sadducees, who say that there is no resurrection [of the dead], came to Him and they asked Him a question, 24 Saying, Teacher, Moses said, If a man dies, leaving no children, his brother shall marry the widow and raise up a family for his brother. 25 Now there were seven brothers among us; the first married and died, and, having no children, left his wife to his brother. 26 The second also died childless, and the third, down to the seventh. 27 Last of all, the woman died also. 28 Now, in the resurrection, to which of the seven will she be wife? For they all had her. 29 But Jesus replied to them, You are wrong because you know neither the Scriptures nor God’s power. 30 For in the resurrected state neither do [men] marry nor are [women] given in marriage, but they are like the angels in heaven. 31 But as to the resurrection of the dead—have you never read what was said to you by God, 32 I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? He is not the God of the dead but of the living! 33 And when the throng heard it, they were astonished and filled with [[c]glad] amazement at His teaching.

34 Now when the Pharisees heard that He had silenced ([d]muzzled) the Sadducees, they gathered together. 35 And one of their number, a lawyer, asked Him a question to test Him. 36 Teacher, which [e]kind of commandment is great and important (the principal kind) in the Law? [Some commandments are light—which are heavy?] 37 And He replied to him, You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind (intellect). 38 This is the great (most important, principal) and first commandment. 39 And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as [you do] yourself. 40 These two commandments [f]sum up and upon them depend all the Law and the Prophets.

41 Now while the Pharisees were still assembled there, Jesus asked them a question, 42 Saying, What do you think of the Christ? Whose Son is He? They said to Him, The Son of David. 43 He said to them, How is it then that David, under the influence of the [Holy] Spirit, calls Him Lord, saying, 44 The Lord said to My Lord, Sit at My right hand until I put Your enemies under Your feet? 45 If then David thus calls Him Lord, how is He his Son? 46 And no one was able to answer Him a word, nor from that day did anyone venture or dare to question Him.

Matthew 23

Then Jesus said to the multitudes and to His disciples, The scribes and Pharisees sit on Moses’ seat [of authority]. So observe and practice all they tell you; but do not do what they do, for they preach, but do not practice. They tie up heavy loads, hard to bear, and place them on men’s shoulders, but they themselves will not lift a finger to help bear them. They do all their works to be seen of men; for they make wide their phylacteries ([a]small cases enclosing certain Scripture passages, worn during prayer on the left arm and forehead) and make long their fringes [worn by all male Israelites, according to the command]. And they [b]take pleasure in and [thus] love the place of honor at feasts and the best seats in the synagogues, And to be greeted with honor in the marketplaces and to have people call them rabbi. But you are not to be called rabbi (teacher), for you have one Teacher and you are all brothers. And do not call anyone [in the church] on earth father, for you have one Father, Who is in heaven. 10 And you must not be called masters (leaders), for you have one Master (Leader), the Christ.

11 He who is greatest among you shall be your servant. 12 Whoever exalts himself [[c]with haughtiness and empty pride] shall be humbled (brought low), and whoever humbles himself [whoever has a modest opinion of himself and behaves accordingly] shall be [d]raised to honor.

13 But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, pretenders (hypocrites)! For you shut the kingdom of heaven in men’s faces; for you neither enter yourselves, nor do you allow those who are about to go in to do so.

14 [e]Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, pretenders (hypocrites)! For you swallow up widows’ houses and for a pretense to cover it up make long prayers; therefore you will receive the greater condemnation and the heavier sentence.

15 Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, pretenders (hypocrites)! For you travel over sea and land to make a single proselyte, and when he becomes one [a proselyte], you make him doubly as much a child of hell (Gehenna) as you are.

16 Woe to you, blind guides, who say, If anyone swears by the [f]sanctuary of the temple, it is nothing; but if anyone swears by the gold of the [g]sanctuary, he is a debtor [bound by his oath]. 17 You blind fools! For which is greater: the gold, or the [h]sanctuary of the temple that has made the gold sacred?

18 You say too, Whoever swears by the altar is not duty bound; but whoever swears by the offering on the altar, his oath is binding. 19 You blind men! Which is greater: the gift, or the altar which makes the gift sacred?

20 So whoever swears by the altar swears by it and by everything on it. 21 And he who swears by the [i]sanctuary of the temple swears by it and by Him Who dwells in it. 22 And whoever swears by heaven swears by the throne of God and by Him Who sits upon it.

23 Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, pretenders (hypocrites)! For you give a tenth of your mint and dill and cummin, and have neglected and omitted the weightier (more important) matters of the Law—right and justice and mercy and fidelity. These you ought [particularly] to have done, without neglecting the others.

24 You blind guides, filtering out a gnat and gulping down a [j]camel!

25 Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, pretenders (hypocrites)! For you clean the outside of the cup and of the plate, but within they are full of extortion (prey, spoil, plunder) and grasping self-indulgence. 26 You blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup and of the plate, so that the outside may be clean also.

27 Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, pretenders (hypocrites)! For you are like tombs that have been whitewashed, which look beautiful on the outside but inside are full of dead men’s bones and everything impure. 28 Just so, you also outwardly seem to people to be just and upright but inside you are full of pretense and lawlessness and iniquity.

29 Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, pretenders (hypocrites)! For you build tombs for the prophets and decorate the monuments of the righteous, 30 Saying, If we had lived in the days of our forefathers, we would not have aided them in shedding the blood of the prophets. 31 Thus you are testifying against yourselves that you are the descendants of those who murdered the prophets. 32 Fill up, then, the measure of your fathers’ sins to the brim [so [k]that nothing may be wanting to a full measure]. 33 You serpents! You spawn of vipers! How can you escape the [l]penalty to be suffered in hell (Gehenna)?

34 Because of this, take notice: I am sending you prophets and wise men (interpreters and teachers) and scribes (men learned in the Mosaic Law and the Prophets); some of them you will kill, even crucify, and some you will flog in your synagogues and pursue and persecute from town to town, 35 So that upon your heads may come all the blood of the righteous ([m]those who correspond to the divine standard of right) shed on earth, from the blood of the righteous Abel to the blood of Zechariah son of Barachiah, whom you murdered between the sanctuary and the altar [of burnt offering].

36 Truly I declare to you, all these [[n]evil, calamitous times] will come upon this generation.

37 O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, murdering the prophets and stoning those who are sent to you! How often would I have gathered your children together as a mother fowl gathers her brood under her wings, and you refused! 38 Behold, your house is forsaken and desolate (abandoned and left destitute of God’s help). 39 For I declare to you, you will not see Me again until you say, Blessed (magnified in worship, adored, and exalted) is He Who comes in the name of the Lord!

Matthew 24

Jesus departed from the temple [a]area and was going on His way when His disciples came up to Him to call His attention to the buildings of the temple and point them out to Him. But He answered them, Do you see all these? Truly I tell you, there will not be left here one stone upon another that will not be thrown down.

While He was seated on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to Him privately and said, Tell us, when will this take place, and what will be the sign of Your coming and of the end (the completion, the consummation) of the age? Jesus answered them, Be careful that no one misleads you [deceiving you and leading you into error]. For many will come in (on the strength of) My name [[b]appropriating the name which belongs to Me], saying, I am the Christ (the Messiah), and they will lead many astray.

And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars; see that you are not frightened or troubled, for this must take place, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and there will be famines and earthquakes in place after place; All this is but the beginning [the early pains] of the [c]birth pangs [of the [d]intolerable anguish].

Then they will hand you over to suffer affliction and tribulation and put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake. 10 And then many will be offended and repelled and will [e]begin to distrust and desert [Him Whom they ought to trust and obey] and will stumble and fall away and betray one another and pursue one another with hatred. 11 And many false prophets will rise up and deceive and lead many into error. 12 And the love of [f]the great body of people will grow cold because of the multiplied lawlessness and iniquity, 13 But he who endures to the end will be saved.

14 And this good news of the kingdom (the Gospel) will be preached throughout the whole world as a testimony to all the nations, and then will come the end. 15 So when you see the appalling sacrilege [the abomination that astonishes and makes desolate], spoken of by the prophet Daniel, standing in the Holy Place—let the reader take notice and [g]ponder and consider and heed [this]— 16 Then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains; 17 Let him who is on the housetop not come down and go into the house to take anything; 18 And let him who is in the field not turn back to get his overcoat. 19 And alas for the women who are pregnant and for those who have nursing babies in those days! 20 Pray that your flight may not be in winter or on a Sabbath.

21 For then there will be great tribulation (affliction, distress, and oppression) such as has not been from the beginning of the world until now—no, and never will be [again]. 22 And if those days had not been shortened, no human being would endure and survive, but for the sake of the elect (God’s chosen ones) those days will be shortened. 23 If anyone says to you then, Behold, here is the Christ (the Messiah)! or, There He is!—do not believe it. 24 For false Christs and false prophets will arise, and they will show great signs and wonders so as to deceive and lead astray, if possible, even the elect (God’s chosen ones).

25 See, I have warned you beforehand. 26 So if they say to you, Behold, He is in the wilderness (desert)—do not go out there; if they tell you, Behold, He is in the secret places or inner rooms—do not believe it. 27 For just as the lightning flashes from the east and shines and [h]is seen as far as the west, so will the coming of the Son of Man be.

28 Wherever there is a fallen body (a corpse), there the vultures (or eagles) will flock together. 29 Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not shed its light, and the stars will fall from the sky, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken.

30 Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn and [i]beat their breasts and lament in anguish, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory [in brilliancy and splendor]. 31 And He will send out His angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather His elect (His chosen ones) from the four winds, [even] from one end of the [j]universe to the other.

32 From the fig tree learn this lesson: as soon as its [k]young shoots become soft and tender and it puts out its leaves, you know [l]of a surety that summer is near. 33 So also when you see these signs, [m]all taken together, coming to pass, you may know [n]of a surety that He is near, at the very doors. 34 Truly I tell you, this generation ([o]the whole multitude of people living at the same time, [p]in a definite, [q]given period) will not pass away till all these things [r]taken together take place. 35 [s]Sky and earth will pass away, but My words will not pass away.

36 But of that [exact] day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. 37 As were the days of Noah, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. 38 For just as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, [men] marrying and [women] being given in marriage, until the [very] day when Noah went into the ark, 39 And they did not know or understand until the flood came and swept them all away—so will be the coming of the Son of Man. 40 At that time two men will be in the field; one will be taken and one will be left. 41 Two women will be grinding at the hand mill; one will be taken and one will be left. 42 Watch therefore [[t]give strict attention, be cautious and active], for you do not know in what kind of a day [[u]whether a near or remote one] your Lord is coming.

43 But understand this: had the householder known in what [part of the night, whether in a [v]night or a morning] watch the thief was coming, he would have watched and would not have allowed his house to be [w]undermined and broken into. 44 You also must be ready therefore, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour when you do not expect Him.

45 Who then is the faithful, thoughtful, and wise servant, whom his master has put in charge of his household to give to the others the food and supplies at the proper time? 46 Blessed (happy, fortunate, and [x]to be envied) is that servant whom, when his master comes, he will find so doing. 47 I solemnly declare to you, he will set him over all his possessions.

48 But if that servant is wicked and says to himself, My master is delayed and is going to be gone a long time, 49 And begins to beat his fellow servants and to eat and drink with the drunken, 50 The master of that servant will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour of which he is not aware, 51 And will punish him [[y]cut him up by scourging] and put him with the pretenders (hypocrites); there will be weeping and grinding of teeth.

And the Women of the Lord cry “Amen”

#Lessonsfromlent

The shouting blind men are pushing their way to the forefront of my heart today.

29 And as they were going out of Jericho, a great throng accompanied Him. 30 And behold, two blind men were sitting by the roadside, and when they heard that Jesus was passing by, they cried out, Lord, have pity and mercy on us, [You] Son of David! 31 The crowds reproved them and told them to keep still; but they cried out all the more, Lord, have pity and mercy on us, [You] Son of David! 32 And Jesus stopped and called them, and asked, What do you want Me to do for you? 33 They answered Him, Lord, we want our eyes to be opened! 34 And Jesus, in pity, touched their eyes; and instantly they received their sight and followed Him.  Matthew 20:29-34

These two men cried out to Jesus from right where they were.  They didn’t have the ability to make themselves presentable, clean themselves up before they met the Messiah.  They knew their need, they knew He was near and they would not be silenced.  The crowds tried to quiet them but they “cried out all the more” and for all the veracity they showed in getting His attention the request seems to ooze humility. . . “have pity and mercy.”  And then the sound of Christ, not the reprove of the crowd, but the open invitation . . . the chance to petition for healing. “Lord, we want our eyes to be opened!”  And the Savior reached out, touched the untouchable, and blessed with sight.  How could they keep from following Him?  What divine compulsion must have moved their feet?

Sister, here’s the comparison I see to my own life.  I met Jesus on the roadside.  No chance and no way to make myself presentable to my Messiah. After years of sitting in the dust unwilling to see, I knew my need and I cried out to the Healer.  Were there some in the crowd that tried to quiet me, to keep me on the roadside? There were.  But the sound of Christ, the open invitation to boldly lay my need before Him silenced them all. “Lord, open my eyes!” and the Savior reached out, touched the untouchable, and blessed with sight.  And divine compulsion moved my feet to follow Him.

Girlfriend, wherever you are right now, Jesus is near and He will hear you.  You cannot clean yourself up or wipe the dust off your own heart.  See your need Sweet One and shout to the Healer of your soul.  Even when the crowds are hushing you . . . cry out to Jesus!  Don’t let the voices of this world keep you on the roadside.  Lay it all before Him . . . “Lord, open my eyes” and the Savior will reach out, touch your soul, and heal your heart.  You will be blessed with sight Sister and you will stride out with joy to follow Him.

SONY DSC

He hears . . .He heals.  #lessonsfromlent

4 Responses to “Lessons From Lent: Day Four”

  1. Husband February 22, 2015 at 1:29 pm #

    My Sweet wife, how I’ve enjoyed watching you regain your spiritual footing as you plowed on even when it may have been hard to hear Gods voice. Sometimes as we put on the Armor of God it may not feel like it fits as it should, the shield and the sword might seem awkward to hold, but they are just as mighty and you are a warrior Princess. God can win the battle for us or He may bring us through it but He is always there! I Love You!

    • Marilyn (Bunny) Biddinger February 22, 2015 at 1:43 pm #

      I have no idea why God chose to bless me with you but I am so thankful He did. Thank you for loving me so well Nehemiah Man. I treasure you so.

  2. Kim Higbie February 23, 2015 at 7:03 am #

    This blessed me so today. I thank the Lord for the words He gives you and your willingness to be used of Him.

    • Marilyn (Bunny) Biddinger February 23, 2015 at 8:01 am #

      I’m so glad to share the love of the Messiah and our journey with you. Praying the Spirit spurs you on today and uses the sweet teachings we experienced this weekend to reality in your life. Blessings my Friend!

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