Spiritual Training

Spiritual Training X2

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June 5 - Morning

"When I am afraid, I put my trust in you. In God, whose word I praise — in God I trust and am not afraid.
What can mere mortals do to me?
All day long they twist my words; all their schemes are for my ruin. They conspire, they lurk, they watch my steps, hoping to take my life.
Because of their wickedness do not let them escape; in your anger, God, bring the nations down.
Record my misery; list my tears on your scroll — are they not in your record?
Then my enemies will turn back when I call for help. By this I will know that God is for me.
In God, whose word I praise, in the Lord, whose word I praise — in God I trust and am not afraid.
What can man do to me?"

- Psalms 56:3-11

David's Trust in God

Psalm 56 opens with David being “hotly pursued” or “hounded” by Philistines who have taken David captive in Gath. A large group of Philistine warriors have pursued David with their swords while they accuse and slander him.

David expresses his need for underserved divine assistance as he begins his request: “Grant me grace, O God” in 56:1. After voicing his need in 56:1-2, David proclaims his confidence in God in 56:3-4 before returning to expressing his need in 56:5-6. In verses 56:7-11 David is hopeful of his deliverance.

David admits to being afraid of his pursuers, but knows he can have confidence in divine help. David knows God’s will and understands what God does because God’s word has been made available to David. Because of this David “will praise the word,” put his trust in God and stop fearing what mere “flesh can do.”
Yhl pi (Hb) – to wait (Eng) – In the Hebrew yhl pi means “to wait” 24x and yhl hi means “to be in a state of waiting” 15x. Sometimes yhl pi is used to refer to waiting on events or circumstances. Noah waits for the flood water to dry up in Genesis 8:10, 12. (Also, 1 Samuel 10:8 and Job 32:11). Sixty-six percent of the time yhl is used in reference to God:

Psalm 130:1, 3, 5 is a confession of faith in God
Isaiah 42:4 has a sense of waiting on God to fulfill prophecy
Isaiah 51:5 has a sense of waiting on God to fulfill prophecy
Micah 5:6 has a sense of waiting on God to fulfill prophecy
I will recognize both my fears in life and my trust in God. I will not deny my concerns,
but neither will I forget my God. I will seek him for divine help and guidance.

Bible Reading Descriptions Here


Complete Text

General Text


Confess sin


Testimony to the Power of God
Race relations

This is a photo looking south down the New Testament time street that ran along the Western Wall of the Temple Mount down to the Pool of Soloam. Part of the street's curb can be seen on the right side where Toni is sitting and Western Wall can be seen on the left side. The pile of broken stone and rubble is the Roman destruction that took place on the Temple Mount above in 70 AD. These pieces were pushed over the edge and the walls dismantled by the Romans. This road was crushed in many places at that time.
(Details 1, 2)
Ezekiel's vision and activities in the Temple in Ezekiel 8.

Someone to Quote

"Let our praise be in God and not from ourselves, for God hates those that commend themselves. Let testimony to our good deeds be borne by others, as it was in the case of our righteous forefathers. Boldness, arrogance, and audacity belong to those that are accursed of God, but moderation, humility, and meekness to those that are blessed by Him."
- Clement of Rome, 96 AD

Something to Ponder

From David Kinnaman's book "You Lost Me"

Myth 4: This generation of young Christians is increasingly "biblically illiterate."

The study examined beliefs across the firm's 28-year history, looking for generational gaps in spiritual beliefs and knowledge. When comparing the faith of young practicing faith Christians (ages 18 to 29) to those of older practicing Christians (ages 30-plus), surprisingly few differences emerged between what the two groups believe. This means that within the Christian community, the theological differences between generations are not as pronounced as might be expected. Young Christians lack biblical knowledge on some matters, but not significantly more so than older Christians.

Instead, the research showed substantial differences among those outside of Christianity. That is, older non-Christians were more familiar than younger non-Christians with Bible stories and Christian theology, even if they did not personally embrace those beliefs.

The Barna president described this as "unexpected, because one often hears how theologically illiterate young Christians are these days. Instead, when it comes to questions of biblical literacy, the broader culture seems to be losing its collective understanding of Christian teachings. In other words, Christianity is no longer 'autopilot' for the nation's youngest citizens. (source)

Here’s a Fact

Jewish manuscripts from 400’s BC sent from the Jewish community on Elephantine Island (in the Nile River) includes the “Passover Letter.” (Details)

Other existent letters from Elephantine such as the "Elephantine Temple Reconstruction Petition" refer to “Delaiah and Shelemiah, the sons of Sanballat, governor of Samaria (which is in agreement with Nehemiah 2:10).

Included in these Elephantine Papyri is also a reference to the Persian king Darius’ authorization to rebuild Jerusalem and the Israelites participation in Jerusalem’s reconstruction (in agreement with Ezra and Nehemiah).


"Drink water from your own cistern, running water from your own well."
- Proverbs 5:15

Coach’s Corner

Pray, and then, be strong. Pray, and then, be the man.

1 Samuel 14
New International Version (NIV)
One day Jonathan son of Saul said to his young armor-bearer, “Come, let’s go over to the Philistine outpost on the other side.” But he did not tell his father.
Saul was staying on the outskirts of Gibeah under a pomegranate tree in Migron. With him were about six hundred men, among whom was Ahijah, who was wearing an ephod. He was a son of Ichabod’s brother Ahitub son of Phinehas, the son of Eli, the Lord’s priest in Shiloh. No one was aware that Jonathan had left.
On each side of the pass that Jonathan intended to cross to reach the Philistine outpost was a cliff; one was called Bozez and the other Seneh. One cliff stood to the north toward Mikmash, the other to the south toward Geba.
Jonathan said to his young armor-bearer, “Come, let’s go over to the outpost of those uncircumcised men. Perhaps the Lord will act in our behalf. Nothing can hinder the Lord from saving, whether by many or by few.”
“Do all that you have in mind,” his armor-bearer said. “Go ahead; I am with you heart and soul.”
Jonathan said, “Come on, then; we will cross over toward them and let them see us. If they say to us, ‘Wait there until we come to you,’ we will stay where we are and not go up to them. 10 But if they say, ‘Come up to us,’ we will climb up, because that will be our sign that the Lord has given them into our hands.”
11 So both of them showed themselves to the Philistine outpost. “Look!” said the Philistines. “The Hebrews are crawling out of the holes they were hiding in.” 12 The men of the outpost shouted to Jonathan and his armor-bearer, “Come up to us and we’ll teach you a lesson.”
So Jonathan said to his armor-bearer, “Climb up after me; the Lord has given them into the hand of Israel.”
13 Jonathan climbed up, using his hands and feet, with his armor-bearer right behind him. The Philistines fell before Jonathan, and his armor-bearer followed and killed behind him. 14 In that first attack Jonathan and his armor-bearer killed some twenty men in an area of about half an acre.
Israel Routs the Philistines
15 Then panic struck the whole army—those in the camp and field, and those in the outposts and raiding parties—and the ground shook. It was a panic sent by God.
16 Saul’s lookouts at Gibeah in Benjamin saw the army melting away in all directions. 17 Then Saul said to the men who were with him, “Muster the forces and see who has left us.” When they did, it was Jonathan and his armor-bearer who were not there.
18 Saul said to Ahijah, “Bring the ark of God.” (At that time it was with the Israelites.) 19 While Saul was talking to the priest, the tumult in the Philistine camp increased more and more. So Saul said to the priest, “Withdraw your hand.”
20 Then Saul and all his men assembled and went to the battle. They found the Philistines in total confusion, striking each other with their swords. 21 Those Hebrews who had previously been with the Philistines and had gone up with them to their camp went over to the Israelites who were with Saul and Jonathan. 22 When all the Israelites who had hidden in the hill country of Ephraim heard that the Philistines were on the run, they joined the battle in hot pursuit. 23 So on that day the Lord saved Israel, and the battle moved on beyond Beth Aven.
Jonathan Eats Honey
24 Now the Israelites were in distress that day, because Saul had bound the people under an oath, saying, “Cursed be anyone who eats food before evening comes, before I have avenged myself on my enemies!” So none of the troops tasted food.
25 The entire army entered the woods, and there was honey on the ground. 26 When they went into the woods, they saw the honey oozing out; yet no one put his hand to his mouth, because they feared the oath. 27 But Jonathan had not heard that his father had bound the people with the oath, so he reached out the end of the staff that was in his hand and dipped it into the honeycomb. He raised his hand to his mouth, and his eyes brightened. 28 Then one of the soldiers told him, “Your father bound the army under a strict oath, saying, ‘Cursed be anyone who eats food today!’ That is why the men are faint.”
29 Jonathan said, “My father has made trouble for the country. See how my eyes brightened when I tasted a little of this honey. 30 How much better it would have been if the men had eaten today some of the plunder they took from their enemies. Would not the slaughter of the Philistines have been even greater?”
31 That day, after the Israelites had struck down the Philistines from Mikmash to Aijalon, they were exhausted. 32 They pounced on the plunder and, taking sheep, cattle and calves, they butchered them on the ground and ate them, together with the blood. 33 Then someone said to Saul, “Look, the men are sinning against the Lord by eating meat that has blood in it.”
“You have broken faith,” he said. “Roll a large stone over here at once.”
34 Then he said, “Go out among the men and tell them, ‘Each of you bring me your cattle and sheep, and slaughter them here and eat them. Do not sin against the Lord by eating meat with blood still in it.’”
So everyone brought his ox that night and slaughtered it there.
35 Then Saul built an altar to the Lord; it was the first time he had done this.
36 Saul said, “Let us go down and pursue the Philistines by night and plunder them till dawn, and let us not leave one of them alive.”
“Do whatever seems best to you,” they replied.
But the priest said, “Let us inquire of God here.”
37 So Saul asked God, “Shall I go down and pursue the Philistines? Will you give them into Israel’s hand?” But God did not answer him that day.
38 Saul therefore said, “Come here, all you who are leaders of the army, and let us find out what sin has been committed today. 39 As surely as the Lord who rescues Israel lives, even if the guilt lies with my son Jonathan, he must die.” But not one of them said a word.
40 Saul then said to all the Israelites, “You stand over there; I and Jonathan my son will stand over here.”
“Do what seems best to you,” they replied.
41 Then Saul prayed to the Lord, the God of Israel, “Why have you not answered your servant today? If the fault is in me or my son Jonathan, respond with Urim, but if the men of Israel are at fault, respond with Thummim.” Jonathan and Saul were taken by lot, and the men were cleared. 42 Saul said, “Cast the lot between me and Jonathan my son.” And Jonathan was taken.
43 Then Saul said to Jonathan, “Tell me what you have done.”
So Jonathan told him, “I tasted a little honey with the end of my staff. And now I must die!”
44 Saul said, “May God deal with me, be it ever so severely, if you do not die, Jonathan.”
45 But the men said to Saul, “Should Jonathan die—he who has brought about this great deliverance in Israel? Never! As surely as the Lord lives, not a hair of his head will fall to the ground, for he did this today with God’s help.” So the men rescued Jonathan, and he was not put to death.
46 Then Saul stopped pursuing the Philistines, and they withdrew to their own land.
47 After Saul had assumed rule over Israel, he fought against their enemies on every side: Moab, the Ammonites, Edom, the kings of Zobah, and the Philistines. Wherever he turned, he inflicted punishment on them. 48 He fought valiantly and defeated the Amalekites, delivering Israel from the hands of those who had plundered them.
Saul’s Family
49 Saul’s sons were Jonathan, Ishvi and Malki-Shua. The name of his older daughter was Merab, and that of the younger was Michal. 50 His wife’s name was Ahinoam daughter of Ahimaaz. The name of the commander of Saul’s army was Abner son of Ner, and Ner was Saul’s uncle. 51 Saul’s father Kish and Abner’s father Ner were sons of Abiel.
52 All the days of Saul there was bitter war with the Philistines, and whenever Saul saw a mighty or brave man, he took him into his service.
Micah 7
New International Version (NIV)
Israel’s Misery

What misery is mine! I am like one who gathers summer fruit     at the gleaning of the vineyard; there is no cluster of grapes to eat,     none of the early figs that I crave.

The faithful have been swept from the land;     not one upright person remains. Everyone lies in wait to shed blood;     they hunt each other with nets.

Both hands are skilled in doing evil;     the ruler demands gifts, the judge accepts bribes,     the powerful dictate what they desire—     they all conspire together.

The best of them is like a brier,     the most upright worse than a thorn hedge. The day God visits you has come,     the day your watchmen sound the alarm.     Now is the time of your confusion.

Do not trust a neighbor;     put no confidence in a friend. Even with the woman who lies in your embrace     guard the words of your lips.

For a son dishonors his father,     a daughter rises up against her mother, a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law—     a man’s enemies are the members of his own household.

But as for me, I watch in hope for the Lord,     I wait for God my Savior;     my God will hear me.
Israel Will Rise

Do not gloat over me, my enemy!     Though I have fallen, I will rise. Though I sit in darkness,     the Lord will be my light.

Because I have sinned against him,     I will bear the Lord’s wrath, until he pleads my case     and upholds my cause. He will bring me out into the light;     I will see his righteousness.
Then my enemy will see it     and will be covered with shame, she who said to me,     “Where is the Lord your God?” My eyes will see her downfall;     even now she will be trampled underfoot     like mire in the streets.
The day for building your walls will come,     the day for extending your boundaries.
In that day people will come to you     from Assyria and the cities of Egypt, even from Egypt to the Euphrates     and from sea to sea     and from mountain to mountain.
The earth will become desolate because of its inhabitants,     as the result of their deeds.
Prayer and Praise
Shepherd your people with your staff,     the flock of your inheritance, which lives by itself in a forest,     in fertile pasturelands. Let them feed in Bashan and Gilead     as in days long ago.
“As in the days when you came out of Egypt,     I will show them my wonders.”
Nations will see and be ashamed,     deprived of all their power. They will put their hands over their mouths     and their ears will become deaf.
They will lick dust like a snake,     like creatures that crawl on the ground. They will come trembling out of their dens;     they will turn in fear to the Lord our God     and will be afraid of you.
Who is a God like you,     who pardons sin and forgives the transgression     of the remnant of his inheritance? You do not stay angry forever     but delight to show mercy.
You will again have compassion on us;     you will tread our sins underfoot     and hurl all our iniquities into the depths of the sea.
You will be faithful to Jacob,     and show love to Abraham, as you pledged on oath to our ancestors     in days long ago.
Job 1-3
New International Version (NIV)
In the land of Uz there lived a man whose name was Job. This man was blameless and upright; he feared God and shunned evil. He had seven sons and three daughters, and he owned seven thousand sheep, three thousand camels, five hundred yoke of oxen and five hundred donkeys, and had a large number of servants. He was the greatest man among all the people of the East.
His sons used to hold feasts in their homes on their birthdays, and they would invite their three sisters to eat and drink with them. When a period of feasting had run its course, Job would make arrangements for them to be purified. Early in the morning he would sacrifice a burnt offering for each of them, thinking, “Perhaps my children have sinned and cursed God in their hearts.” This was Job’s regular custom.
One day the angels came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came with them. The Lord said to Satan, “Where have you come from?”
Satan answered the Lord, “From roaming throughout the earth, going back and forth on it.”
Then the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil.”
“Does Job fear God for nothing?” Satan replied. 10 “Have you not put a hedge around him and his household and everything he has? You have blessed the work of his hands, so that his flocks and herds are spread throughout the land. 11 But now stretch out your hand and strike everything he has, and he will surely curse you to your face.”
12 The Lord said to Satan, “Very well, then, everything he has is in your power, but on the man himself do not lay a finger.”
Then Satan went out from the presence of the Lord.
13 One day when Job’s sons and daughters were feasting and drinking wine at the oldest brother’s house, 14 a messenger came to Job and said, “The oxen were plowing and the donkeys were grazing nearby, 15 and the Sabeans attacked and made off with them. They put the servants to the sword, and I am the only one who has escaped to tell you!”
16 While he was still speaking, another messenger came and said, “The fire of God fell from the heavens and burned up the sheep and the servants, and I am the only one who has escaped to tell you!”
17 While he was still speaking, another messenger came and said, “The Chaldeans formed three raiding parties and swept down on your camels and made off with them. They put the servants to the sword, and I am the only one who has escaped to tell you!”
18 While he was still speaking, yet another messenger came and said, “Your sons and daughters were feasting and drinking wine at the oldest brother’s house, 19 when suddenly a mighty wind swept in from the desert and struck the four corners of the house. It collapsed on them and they are dead, and I am the only one who has escaped to tell you!”
20 At this, Job got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell to the ground in worship 21 and said:
“Naked I came from my mother’s womb,     and naked I will depart. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away;     may the name of the Lord be praised.”
22 In all this, Job did not sin by charging God with wrongdoing.
On another day the angels came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came with them to present himself before him. And the Lord said to Satan, “Where have you come from?”
Satan answered the Lord, “From roaming throughout the earth, going back and forth on it.”
Then the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil. And he still maintains his integrity, though you incited me against him to ruin him without any reason.”
“Skin for skin!” Satan replied. “A man will give all he has for his own life. But now stretch out your hand and strike his flesh and bones, and he will surely curse you to your face.”
The Lord said to Satan, “Very well, then, he is in your hands; but you must spare his life.”
So Satan went out from the presence of the Lord and afflicted Job with painful sores from the soles of his feet to the crown of his head. Then Job took a piece of broken pottery and scraped himself with it as he sat among the ashes.
His wife said to him, “Are you still maintaining your integrity? Curse God and die!”
10 He replied, “You are talking like a foolish woman. Shall we accept good from God, and not trouble?”
In all this, Job did not sin in what he said.
11 When Job’s three friends, Eliphaz the Temanite, Bildad the Shuhite and Zophar the Naamathite, heard about all the troubles that had come upon him, they set out from their homes and met together by agreement to go and sympathize with him and comfort him. 12 When they saw him from a distance, they could hardly recognize him; they began to weep aloud, and they tore their robes and sprinkled dust on their heads. 13 Then they sat on the ground with him for seven days and seven nights. No one said a word to him, because they saw how great his suffering was.
Job Speaks
After this, Job opened his mouth and cursed the day of his birth. He said:

“May the day of my birth perish,     and the night that said, ‘A boy is conceived!’

That day—may it turn to darkness;     may God above not care about it;     may no light shine on it.

May gloom and utter darkness claim it once more;     may a cloud settle over it;     may blackness overwhelm it.

That night—may thick darkness seize it;     may it not be included among the days of the year     nor be entered in any of the months.

May that night be barren;     may no shout of joy be heard in it.

May those who curse days curse that day,     those who are ready to rouse Leviathan.

May its morning stars become dark;     may it wait for daylight in vain     and not see the first rays of dawn,
for it did not shut the doors of the womb on me     to hide trouble from my eyes.
“Why did I not perish at birth,     and die as I came from the womb?
Why were there knees to receive me     and breasts that I might be nursed?
For now I would be lying down in peace;     I would be asleep and at rest
with kings and rulers of the earth,     who built for themselves places now lying in ruins,
with princes who had gold,     who filled their houses with silver.
Or why was I not hidden away in the ground like a stillborn child,     like an infant who never saw the light of day?
There the wicked cease from turmoil,     and there the weary are at rest.
Captives also enjoy their ease;     they no longer hear the slave driver’s shout.
The small and the great are there,     and the slaves are freed from their owners.
“Why is light given to those in misery,     and life to the bitter of soul,
to those who long for death that does not come,     who search for it more than for hidden treasure,
who are filled with gladness     and rejoice when they reach the grave?
Why is life given to a man     whose way is hidden,     whom God has hedged in?
For sighing has become my daily food;     my groans pour out like water.
What I feared has come upon me;     what I dreaded has happened to me.
I have no peace, no quietness;     I have no rest, but only turmoil.”

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