Spiritual Training

Spiritual Training X2

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May 30 - Morning

"Blessed is the one whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered. Blessed is the one whose sin the Lord does not count against them and in whose spirit is no deceit.

When I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long. For day and night your hand was heavy on me; my strength was sapped as in the heat of summer.

- Selah -

Then I acknowledged my sin to you and did not cover up my iniquity. I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord.” And you forgave the guilt of my sin.

- Selah -

... I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my loving eye on you. Do not be like the horse or the mule, which have no understanding but must be controlled by bit and bridle or they will not come to you."
- Psalms 32:1-9

The Blessing of Confession of Sin

Psalm 32 is categorized as a “maskil” in the title superscript, but the exact meaning of this word is still undecided. Some clues come from:

1. Verse 8 where this same psalm uses the same root word which is translated “let me teach you.” This sense of “teach” and “instruct” matches the tone of this Psalm 32 which is a didactic psalm, or an instructional psalm. (This is similar to the intent of Psalm 78:1. Also, consider Psalm 42, Psalm 44 and Psalm 45.)
2. Amos 5:13 the word “maskil” is translated as "prudent".
3. Some commentators suggest “maskill” means:
  1. A psalm for meditation
  2. A psalm of understanding
  3. A psalm of skill

Psalm 32 is indeed a Psalm that shares the instruction of a man who has experienced and discerned truth. In this case, David explains the effect of his transgression and how he navigated his way through the chaos and darkness to gain restored fellowship with the Lord and find deliverance and victory.

The instruction begins in verse 1 by identifying the ultimate principle which is this: The blessed state, or the true happiness, is having your sins forgiven. (Note: there is no assumption that sinlessness is even an option nor is living free from sin presented as an option.) The focus is on the fact that it doesn’t get any better than having your sins forgiven.

Humans are introduced as sinning in three basic ways:
1. “transgressions which is rebellion towards God
2. “sin” which is a turning away or missing the target demanded by God
3. “iniquity” which is guilt before God

Human evil is thus identified and introduced as universal, but it is also presented with the hope that there is an opportunity of your sin being “lifted,” “covered,” and “not counted.”

It is interesting that a fourth sin, “deceit,” is also introduced, but it is not given any option of being lifted, covered, removed or forgiven. This is true because the existence of deceit prevents the human spirit from honestly identifying personal sin. Without the ability to honestly evaluate personal sin there is no possible way to confess that sin. The deceitful spirit will try to justify the iniquity, hide the sin, and reject the Lord’s authority.

32:3-4 detail the results of the sinner failing to confess their sin. They fail to have their sins forgiven because they remain silent refusing to confess their sin. This position advances their program of deceit. The hidden sin of the deceitful sinner effects their body and their emotions. At the same time, the conviction of the Lord weighs down their soul.

But, when the sinner identified their sin and confessed their sin to the Lord instead of covering it with deceit, the Lord willingly forgave the broken sinner. (32:5-6)

This psalm is written with a selah inserted. A selah is the time during the public singing of this psalm that the singing of the lyrics stops while the playing of the music continues. A selah was a time for the worshipper to meditated silently and consider the meaning of the words just sung and make personal application of these truths to their own life.

After a time of reflection, while the background music played (or during the selah), the psalmists appeals to all sinners (thus, all mankind) in 32:8-9. The Psalmists asks the listening congregation to receive this instruction and to not be like a horse or a mule who must be controlled with a bridle.

The sinner can only be free and blessed if they honestly identify their sin to the Lord. Without confession the sinner will never be free, but will instead be bridled and saddled by the Lord like a horse is bridled and saddled by a rider who forces the horse wherever the rider desires.
Tsaba (Hb) – Army (Eng) – tsaba is the Hebrew word where several idea s come together including “a group,” “a difficult task,” and “to force into action.” These concepts come together to give the Tsaba the meaning of “service as a group” and is applied in the military sense. It is used as “host” (including angelic host) in military service, war or as an army. Tsaba also is used to communicate “work,” or “a labor force,” “forced labor,” Tsaba can even be translated as “conflict.”
Have I confessed my sin today? I will make a commitment to daily confess my sins to the Lord, instead of ignoring them, hiding them or neglecting to recognize sin as sin.

Bible Reading Descriptions Here


Complete Text

General Text


Food and healthy diet


Humility among leaders
Government reform

Olive trees deflect the sunlight in the Hinnom Valley at sunset below Jerusalem on the south side. Jerusalem, or the ancient City of David, is at the top of the hill (or, mount) on the right side of the photo.
A map detailing 1 Kings chapter 12 and Jeroboam's golden calves that led northern Israel astray.

Someone to Quote

“I am going to put the Bible out of business.” – Robert Ingersoll (1833-1899)

Something to Ponder

Here is a list of 27 crimes that required the death penalty under the Law of Moses:

- Premeditated Murder Ex. 21:12 Num 36:16-22
- Killing Pregnant Woman and Child
- Kidnapping
Ex. 21:16; Dt. 24:7
- Oppressing Strangers
- Killing Slaves
- Afflicting Widows/Orphans
- Persistent Disobedience to Parents
- Persistent Disobedience to Authority
- Striking Parents
Exodus 21:15
- Cursing Parents
Ex.21:17; Lev.20:9; Deut.21:21
- False Prophesy
- Followers of a False Prophet
Deut. 13:12-18
- Sacrificing to False Gods
Ex.22:20; Deut. 17:5
- Offering Human Sacrifices
- Magic and Divination
Ex.22:18; Lev.19:26, 31; 20:27; Deut. 18:9-14
- Blasphemy
Lev.24:10-16, 23
- Profaning Sabbath
Ex.22:14; 35:2; Num.15:32-36
- Adultery
Lev.20:10-21; Deut.22:22
- Homosexuality
Lev. 18:22; 20:13,
- Sexual Perversion
- Incest
Lev.18::6-17; 20:11, 12, 14
- Bestiality
Ex.22:19; Lev.20:15-16
- Prostitution
- Rape
Deut.22:21, 25-27
- Premarital Sex
Lev.21:9; Deut.22:20-21
- False Witness
Deut.19:19, 21
- Owning an animal that attacks people

Here’s a Fact

It is worth recognizing that the followers of the apostles honored the writings of the apostles as authoritative. Many of those in the second generation after the apostles suffered for what the text of the New Testament documents taught. So, it is not reasonable to assume that the early church willingly altered the text of these documents or felt they could publish deviations of the very words that gave their faith substance, gave their history meaning and gave their life direction. Besides, for many years, even well into the second century, eyewitnesses of Jesus and his apostles continued to live and remain active in the church community. These world hardly had stood for faulty transmission of the New Testament. And, do not forget that extra-biblical documents from secular sources such as the:

Pliny the Younger,
Mara Bar-Serapion

All these write in such a way that supports the New Testament record that has been handed down to us.


"If you play the fool and exalt yourself,
    or if you plan evil,
    clap your hand over your mouth!"

- Proverbs 30:32

Coach’s Corner

Sometimes you do not need a clear goal for motivation, but a genuine fear of failure.

1 Samuel 8
New International Version (NIV)
Israel Asks for a King
When Samuel grew old, he appointed his sons as Israel’s leaders. The name of his firstborn was Joel and the name of his second was Abijah, and they served at Beersheba. But his sons did not follow his ways. They turned aside after dishonest gain and accepted bribes and perverted justice.
So all the elders of Israel gathered together and came to Samuel at Ramah. They said to him, “You are old, and your sons do not follow your ways; now appoint a king to lead us, such as all the other nations have.”
But when they said, “Give us a king to lead us,” this displeased Samuel; so he prayed to the Lord. And the Lord told him: “Listen to all that the people are saying to you; it is not you they have rejected, but they have rejected me as their king. As they have done from the day I brought them up out of Egypt until this day, forsaking me and serving other gods, so they are doing to you. Now listen to them; but warn them solemnly and let them know what the king who will reign over them will claim as his rights.”
10 Samuel told all the words of the Lord to the people who were asking him for a king. 11 He said, “This is what the king who will reign over you will claim as his rights: He will take your sons and make them serve with his chariots and horses, and they will run in front of his chariots. 12 Some he will assign to be commanders of thousands and commanders of fifties, and others to plow his ground and reap his harvest, and still others to make weapons of war and equipment for his chariots. 13 He will take your daughters to be perfumers and cooks and bakers. 14 He will take the best of your fields and vineyards and olive groves and give them to his attendants. 15 He will take a tenth of your grain and of your vintage and give it to his officials and attendants. 16 Your male and female servants and the best of your cattle and donkeys he will take for his own use. 17 He will take a tenth of your flocks, and you yourselves will become his slaves. 18 When that day comes, you will cry out for relief from the king you have chosen, but the Lord will not answer you in that day.”
19 But the people refused to listen to Samuel. “No!” they said. “We want a king over us. 20 Then we will be like all the other nations, with a king to lead us and to go out before us and fight our battles.”
21 When Samuel heard all that the people said, he repeated it before the Lord. 22 The Lord answered, “Listen to them and give them a king.”
Then Samuel said to the Israelites, “Everyone go back to your own town.”
Hosea 11
New International Version (NIV)
God’s Love for Israel
“When Israel was a child, I loved him,     and out of Egypt I called my son.

But the more they were called,     the more they went away from me. They sacrificed to the Baals     and they burned incense to images.

It was I who taught Ephraim to walk,     taking them by the arms; but they did not realize     it was I who healed them.

I led them with cords of human kindness,     with ties of love. To them I was like one who lifts     a little child to the cheek,     and I bent down to feed them.

“Will they not return to Egypt     and will not Assyria rule over them     because they refuse to repent?

A sword will flash in their cities;     it will devour their false prophets     and put an end to their plans.

My people are determined to turn from me.     Even though they call me God Most High,     I will by no means exalt them.

“How can I give you up, Ephraim?     How can I hand you over, Israel? How can I treat you like Admah?     How can I make you like Zeboyim? My heart is changed within me;     all my compassion is aroused.

I will not carry out my fierce anger,     nor will I devastate Ephraim again. For I am God, and not a man—     the Holy One among you.     I will not come against their cities.
They will follow the Lord;     he will roar like a lion. When he roars,     his children will come trembling from the west.
They will come from Egypt,     trembling like sparrows,     from Assyria, fluttering like doves. I will settle them in their homes,”     declares the Lord.
Israel’s Sin
Ephraim has surrounded me with lies,     Israel with deceit. And Judah is unruly against God,     even against the faithful Holy One.
Psalm 119:1-44
New International Version (NIV)
Psalm 119
א Aleph

Blessed are those whose ways are blameless,     who walk according to the law of the Lord.

Blessed are those who keep his statutes     and seek him with all their heart—

they do no wrong     but follow his ways.

You have laid down precepts     that are to be fully obeyed.

Oh, that my ways were steadfast     in obeying your decrees!

Then I would not be put to shame     when I consider all your commands.

I will praise you with an upright heart     as I learn your righteous laws.

I will obey your decrees;     do not utterly forsake me.
ב Beth

How can a young person stay on the path of purity?     By living according to your word.
I seek you with all my heart;     do not let me stray from your commands.
I have hidden your word in my heart     that I might not sin against you.
Praise be to you, Lord;     teach me your decrees.
With my lips I recount     all the laws that come from your mouth.
I rejoice in following your statutes     as one rejoices in great riches.
I meditate on your precepts     and consider your ways.
I delight in your decrees;     I will not neglect your word.
ג Gimel
Be good to your servant while I live,     that I may obey your word.
Open my eyes that I may see     wonderful things in your law.
I am a stranger on earth;     do not hide your commands from me.
My soul is consumed with longing     for your laws at all times.
You rebuke the arrogant, who are accursed,     those who stray from your commands.
Remove from me their scorn and contempt,     for I keep your statutes.
Though rulers sit together and slander me,     your servant will meditate on your decrees.
Your statutes are my delight;     they are my counselors.
ד Daleth
I am laid low in the dust;     preserve my life according to your word.
I gave an account of my ways and you answered me;     teach me your decrees.
Cause me to understand the way of your precepts,     that I may meditate on your wonderful deeds.
My soul is weary with sorrow;     strengthen me according to your word.
Keep me from deceitful ways;     be gracious to me and teach me your law.
I have chosen the way of faithfulness;     I have set my heart on your laws.
I hold fast to your statutes, Lord;     do not let me be put to shame.
I run in the path of your commands,     for you have broadened my understanding.
ה He
Teach me, Lord, the way of your decrees,     that I may follow it to the end.
Give me understanding, so that I may keep your law     and obey it with all my heart.
Direct me in the path of your commands,     for there I find delight.
Turn my heart toward your statutes     and not toward selfish gain.
Turn my eyes away from worthless things;     preserve my life according to your word.
Fulfill your promise to your servant,     so that you may be feared.
Take away the disgrace I dread,     for your laws are good.
How I long for your precepts!     In your righteousness preserve my life.
ו Waw
May your unfailing love come to me, Lord,     your salvation, according to your promise;
then I can answer anyone who taunts me,     for I trust in your word.
Never take your word of truth from my mouth,     for I have put my hope in your laws.
I will always obey your law,     for ever and ever.

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