Spiritual Training

Spiritual Training X2

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March 15 - Evening

"In the days of Shamgar son of Anath, in the days of Jael, the highways were abandoned; travelers took to winding paths. Villagers in Israel would not fight; they held back until I, Deborah, arose, until I arose, a mother in Israel. God chose new leaders when war came to the city gates, but not a shield or spear was seen among forty thousand in Israel." - Judges 5:6-8

Things Change When Moms Are Fed Up

In poetic fashion Deborah recounts the social condition of Israel before her rule and the Lord’s deliverance. Deborah’s lyrics describes the days preceding her rise to power when Shamgar became a national hero and before Jael secured the Deborah’s battle with Sisera. Shamgar and Jael were both deliverers for Israel, yet neither of them were Israelites. Shamgar had a foreign name similar to the Hurrian’s of Anatolia (modern Turkey) who appear to worship Anath, Baal’s sister, the fierce goddess of war. Jael, the woman who killed the Canaanite General Sisera in fulfillment of Deborah’s prediction, was a member of the nomadic Kenite tribe from Midian who joined Israel in the wilderness after they became Moses’ in-laws through his marriage to Zipporah.
Deborah’s lyrics continue to describe these days:
  • Abandoned highways
  • Fearful travelers who avoided being robbed by not using the main roads
  • Trade ceased and the economy collapsed
  • Villagers would not engage in self-defense and after disarmament, they could
  • Israel had been disarmament in order to secure peace treaties with the Canaanites
  • New gods where chosen (to accommodate the peace treaties with the Canaanites)

Then in the midst of a society riddled by crime, suffering from economic collapse and unable to defend itself, they were attacked. War came to their “peaceful,” crime infested, financially broke, unarmed city gates, since “not a shield or spear was seen among forty thousand in Israel.”

It was at this point Deborah had enough! And, Deborah, a mother in Israel arose, and the Lord arose with her, to guide and deliver Israel out of this cultural abyss.

Now Deborah sings lyrics of the Lord’s deliverance and the incredible turn of events Israel had experience. But, deliverance is not the same thing as transformation. Since Israel will remain uneducated concerning the things of the Lord and untransformed in their souls, they will simply live to be oppressed and conquered another day.
Nike (Gr) – Victory (Eng) – nike is a Greek word that is translated “victory in 1 John 5:4. In Matthew 12:20 and 1 Corinthians 15:54-57 (3x) nike is spelled nikos and, again, means “victory.” In Revelation 15:2 the word used is nikao which means “to conquer” and “to overcome.” Nikao is translated “come victorious from.”
Do I help my culture and society avoid the pitfalls of evil and complacency?
Do I vocalize the dangers of evil and actively avoid evil in my own actions?
I will help my society by communicating and expressing the knowledge of the Lord.

Bible Reading Descriptions Here


(morning only)

Complete Text

General Text


For desire to be productive


Electronics, sound board, mics, amps, etc.

Remains of the mud brick gate of Ashkelon from the days of Joshua and David. (Details here and here)
Details and labels of the Temple Treasures taken into Rome in 70 AD located on the Arch of Titus built in 82 AD. (Details)

Someone to Quote

"If God is for anybody anywhere, it's for everybody everywhere."  — Edward Lawlor

Something to Ponder

In 598 Augustine of Canterbury asked Pope Gregory directions for the organizaiton of the church in England.

Augustine asked: "Whereas the faith is one and the same, are there different customs in different churches? and is one custom of masses observed in the Holy Roman Church, and another in that of the Gauls?"

Pope Gregory's answer: “You know, my brother, the custom of the Roman Church, in which you remember you were brought up. But my advice is that you should make a careful selection of anything that you have found either in the Roman or of the Gauls, or any other Church, which may be more acceptable to Almighty God, and diligently teach the Church of the English, which as yet is new in the faith, whatsoever you can gather from the several Churches. For things are not to be loved for the sake of places, but places for the sake of good things. Choose, therefore, from each Church those things that are pious, religious and seemly, and when you have, as it were incorporated them, let the minds of the English be accustomed thereto.”

Here’s a Fact

Most forms of Jewish eschatology at the time of the coming of Jesus included these common features:
• Destruction of empires
• Casting down of idols
• Glorified Jerusalem
• National restoration
• Punish corrupt Jewish leaders
• All wrong made right
• Enthroned Davidic King
• Israel’s sins forgiven
• Spirit poured out on all God’s people
• Spirit’s presence leads all into obedience
• Truth/Light from Jerusalem to world
• All nations worship the Lord


"A fool spurns a parent’s discipline, but whoever heeds correction shows prudence."
- Proverbs 15:5

Coach’s Corner

You want to be a leader and have influence? Then simply realize there are people watching you. Some of these people will imitate and follow you.

1 John 5:4
New International Version (NIV)
for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith.
Matthew 12:20
New International Version (NIV)
A bruised reed he will not break,     and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out, till he has brought justice through to victory.
1 Corinthians 15:54-57
New International Version (NIV)
54 When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: “Death has been swallowed up in victory.”
“Where, O death, is your victory?     Where, O death, is your sting?”
56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. 57 But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
Revelation 15:2
New International Version (NIV)
And I saw what looked like a sea of glass glowing with fire and, standing beside the sea, those who had been victorious over the beast and its image and over the number of its name. They held harps given them by God
Judges 6
New International Version (NIV)
The Israelites did evil in the eyes of the Lord, and for seven years he gave them into the hands of the Midianites. Because the power of Midian was so oppressive, the Israelites prepared shelters for themselves in mountain clefts, caves and strongholds. Whenever the Israelites planted their crops, the Midianites, Amalekites and other eastern peoples invaded the country. They camped on the land and ruined the crops all the way to Gaza and did not spare a living thing for Israel, neither sheep nor cattle nor donkeys. They came up with their livestock and their tents like swarms of locusts. It was impossible to count them or their camels; they invaded the land to ravage it. Midian so impoverished the Israelites that they cried out to the Lord for help.
When the Israelites cried out to the Lord because of Midian, he sent them a prophet, who said, “This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: I brought you up out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. I rescued you from the hand of the Egyptians. And I delivered you from the hand of all your oppressors; I drove them out before you and gave you their land. 10 I said to you, ‘I am the Lord your God; do not worship the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you live.’ But you have not listened to me.”
11 The angel of the Lord came and sat down under the oak in Ophrah that belonged to Joash the Abiezrite, where his son Gideon was threshing wheat in a winepress to keep it from the Midianites. 12 When the angel of the Lord appeared to Gideon, he said, “The Lord is with you, mighty warrior.”
13 “Pardon me, my lord,” Gideon replied, “but if the Lord is with us, why has all this happened to us? Where are all his wonders that our ancestors told us about when they said, ‘Did not the Lord bring us up out of Egypt?’ But now the Lord has abandoned us and given us into the hand of Midian.”
14 The Lord turned to him and said, “Go in the strength you have and save Israel out of Midian’s hand. Am I not sending you?”
15 “Pardon me, my lord,” Gideon replied, “but how can I save Israel? My clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my family.”
16 The Lord answered, “I will be with you, and you will strike down all the Midianites, leaving none alive.”
17 Gideon replied, “If now I have found favor in your eyes, give me a sign that it is really you talking to me. 18 Please do not go away until I come back and bring my offering and set it before you.”
And the Lord said, “I will wait until you return.”
19 Gideon went inside, prepared a young goat, and from an ephah of flour he made bread without yeast. Putting the meat in a basket and its broth in a pot, he brought them out and offered them to him under the oak.
20 The angel of God said to him, “Take the meat and the unleavened bread, place them on this rock, and pour out the broth.” And Gideon did so. 21 Then the angel of the Lord touched the meat and the unleavened bread with the tip of the staff that was in his hand. Fire flared from the rock, consuming the meat and the bread. And the angel of the Lord disappeared. 22 When Gideon realized that it was the angel of the Lord, he exclaimed, “Alas, Sovereign Lord! I have seen the angel of the Lord face to face!”
23 But the Lord said to him, “Peace! Do not be afraid. You are not going to die.”
24 So Gideon built an altar to the Lord there and called it The Lord Is Peace. To this day it stands in Ophrah of the Abiezrites.
25 That same night the Lord said to him, “Take the second bull from your father’s herd, the one seven years old. Tear down your father’s altar to Baal and cut down the Asherah pole beside it. 26 Then build a proper kind of altar to the Lord your God on the top of this height. Using the wood of the Asherah pole that you cut down, offer the second bull as a burnt offering.”
27 So Gideon took ten of his servants and did as the Lord told him. But because he was afraid of his family and the townspeople, he did it at night rather than in the daytime.
28 In the morning when the people of the town got up, there was Baal’s altar, demolished, with the Asherah pole beside it cut down and the second bull sacrificed on the newly built altar!
29 They asked each other, “Who did this?”
When they carefully investigated, they were told, “Gideon son of Joash did it.”
30 The people of the town demanded of Joash, “Bring out your son. He must die, because he has broken down Baal’s altar and cut down the Asherah pole beside it.”
31 But Joash replied to the hostile crowd around him, “Are you going to plead Baal’s cause? Are you trying to save him? Whoever fights for him shall be put to death by morning! If Baal really is a god, he can defend himself when someone breaks down his altar.” 32 So because Gideon broke down Baal’s altar, they gave him the name Jerub-Baal that day, saying, “Let Baal contend with him.”
33 Now all the Midianites, Amalekites and other eastern peoples joined forces and crossed over the Jordan and camped in the Valley of Jezreel. 34 Then the Spirit of the Lord came on Gideon, and he blew a trumpet, summoning the Abiezrites to follow him. 35 He sent messengers throughout Manasseh, calling them to arms, and also into Asher, Zebulun and Naphtali, so that they too went up to meet them.
36 Gideon said to God, “If you will save Israel by my hand as you have promised— 37 look, I will place a wool fleece on the threshing floor. If there is dew only on the fleece and all the ground is dry, then I will know that you will save Israel by my hand, as you said.” 38 And that is what happened. Gideon rose early the next day; he squeezed the fleece and wrung out the dew—a bowlful of water.
39 Then Gideon said to God, “Do not be angry with me. Let me make just one more request. Allow me one more test with the fleece, but this time make the fleece dry and let the ground be covered with dew.” 40 That night God did so. Only the fleece was dry; all the ground was covered with dew.
Deuteronomy 13
New International Version (NIV)
Worshiping Other Gods
13 If a prophet, or one who foretells by dreams, appears among you and announces to you a sign or wonder, and if the sign or wonder spoken of takes place, and the prophet says, “Let us follow other gods” (gods you have not known) “and let us worship them,” you must not listen to the words of that prophet or dreamer. The Lord your God is testing you to find out whether you love him with all your heart and with all your soul. It is the Lord your God you must follow, and him you must revere. Keep his commands and obey him; serve him and hold fast to him. That prophet or dreamer must be put to death for inciting rebellion against the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt and redeemed you from the land of slavery. That prophet or dreamer tried to turn you from the way the Lord your God commanded you to follow. You must purge the evil from among you.
If your very own brother, or your son or daughter, or the wife you love, or your closest friend secretly entices you, saying, “Let us go and worship other gods” (gods that neither you nor your ancestors have known, gods of the peoples around you, whether near or far, from one end of the land to the other), do not yield to them or listen to them. Show them no pity. Do not spare them or shield them. You must certainly put them to death. Your hand must be the first in putting them to death, and then the hands of all the people. 10 Stone them to death, because they tried to turn you away from the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. 11 Then all Israel will hear and be afraid, and no one among you will do such an evil thing again.
12 If you hear it said about one of the towns the Lord your God is giving you to live in 13 that troublemakers have arisen among you and have led the people of their town astray, saying, “Let us go and worship other gods” (gods you have not known), 14 then you must inquire, probe and investigate it thoroughly. And if it is true and it has been proved that this detestable thing has been done among you, 15 you must certainly put to the sword all who live in that town. You must destroy it completely, both its people and its livestock. 16 You are to gather all the plunder of the town into the middle of the public square and completely burn the town and all its plunder as a whole burnt offering to the Lord your God. That town is to remain a ruin forever, never to be rebuilt, 17 and none of the condemned things are to be found in your hands. Then the Lord will turn from his fierce anger, will show you mercy, and will have compassion on you. He will increase your numbers, as he promised on oath to your ancestors— 18 because you obey the Lord your God by keeping all his commands that I am giving you today and doing what is right in his eyes.

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