Spiritual Training

Spiritual Training X2

July 24 - Morning

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July 1 - Morning

"I said, 'I will watch my ways and keep my tongue from sin; I will put a muzzle on my mouth while in the presence of the wicked.'

So I remained utterly silent, not even saying anything good. But my anguish increased; my heart grew hot within me. While I meditated, the fire burned; then I spoke with my tongue:

'Show me, Lord, my life’s end and the number of my days; let me know how fleeting my life is. You have made my days a mere handbreadth; the span of my years is as nothing before you. Everyone is but a breath, even those who seem secure.' "

- Psalms 39:1-5

Think Before You Spew Out Your Questions

The superscript of David’s Psalm 39 contains the name Jeduthun:
            “For the director of music. For Jeduthun. A psalm of David.”

Jeduthun is mentioned in First Chronicles 16:42 as being one of two Levites “responsible for the sounding of the trumpets and cymbals and for the playing of the other instruments for sacred song.” Jeduthun was a Levites who ministered in song during the days of Zadok the high priest when the tabernacle was set up at the high place in Gibeon around 1000 BC. Even though the Ark of the Covenant had been brought into Jerusalem and set inside the tent of David, the Levite Jeduthun led the music in the tabernacle courts in order to give thanks to the Lord during the daily sacrifices 7 miles to the north of Jerusalem at the High Place of Gibeon. (See First Chronicles 16)

The psalm begins with David realizing that he has to watch what he says since he is being challenged emotionally and intellectually concerning the true meaning of life and wicked people. David realizes if he simply allows his thoughts to burst out in words he will be sinning with his mouth. So, instead David vows to “put a muzzle” on his mouth in order to prevent a bad situation from becoming worse. (Psalm 39:1)

Yet, the anguish of his thoughts and the questions he had concerning life and wicked men burned in his soul. He sought a logical balance in life between purpose, sinful behavior and the justice of God. (Psalm 39:2-3)

Ultimately David has to speak and he begins by not spewing out his rash conclusion, but instead begins his quest by first establishing a perspective. David begins by asking to see or understand the length and limits of a human life. Now, from this lofty vantage point David can begin to analyze with a proper perspective all the issues that are bothering him. (Psalm 39:3-8)
Kbd (Hb) – to be heavy (Eng) – Kbd is a Semitic root that means “to be heavy.” The adjective kabed means “heavy” and kabod means “weight, honor, majesty.” Kabed, “heavy in weight,” is used in 1 Samuel 4:18 to refer to the overweight high priest Eli. In Exodus 17:12 kabed is used in reference to Moses’ tired arms. Kbd was used negatively to refer to the weight of a burden on a person. Positively kbd can refer to the | weight of honor a person deserves or to the majesty of God.  
I will focus on thinking about the effect my words will have on others, on situations and on myself before I speak. I will put a muzzle on and | give myself a chance to analyze my thoughts before they become spoken words.

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Physical strength


Local mayors and city officials

Warren's fallen ashlar stone seen by Charles Warren in 1873 (photographed here in 2012) in the city gutter (or, sewer) under the road that ran along the Western Wall of Herod's temple mount. This is below Robinson's Arch and was probably the result of a construction accident around 10 BC during Herod's construction of Robinson's Arch. The ashlar fell during construction, but was never retrieved. (I wonder if there was a follow-up inspection and fines assigned by OSHA?) See Warren's 1873 image here.
Three phases of salvations work in our lives.

Someone to Quote

"Christianity is a battle, not a dream."
- Wendell Phillips

Something to Ponder

"On average, an ordained Protestant pastor serving a small congregation received a median salary and housing package of $31,234, according to a study by sociologist Jackson Carroll."

Here’s a Fact

An ancient Egyptian document from 1300 BC, “Destruction of Mankind”, describes a group of people who were not Egyptian fleeing from the Land of Goshen (eastern Nile Delta area), but pursued by the armies of Pharaoh. Within this document is the Egyptian root. YWY, which is the name of the Hebrew God YHWH, or, I AM THAT I AM. (Hieroglyphic text) (Translated text)


"Whoever listens to me (wisdom) will live in safety and be at ease, without fear of harm."
- Proverbs 1:33

Coach’s Corner

Personal growth increases your personal potential. The failure to learn and the refusal to change is the rejection of increasing your opportunity for success.

"The Lord said to me, 'Take a large scroll and write on it with an ordinary pen: Maher-Shalal-Hash-Baz.'

So I called in Uriah the priest and Zechariah son of Jeberekiah as reliable witnesses for me.

Then I made love to the prophetess, and she conceived and gave birth to a son.

And the Lord said to me,
'Name him Maher-Shalal-Hash-Baz. For before the boy knows how to say "My father" or "My mother," the wealth of Damascus and the plunder of Samaria will be carried off by the king of Assyria.'

The Lord spoke to me again:

'Because this people has rejected     the gently flowing waters of Shiloah and rejoices over Rezin     and the son of Remaliah, therefore the Lord is about to bring against them     the mighty floodwaters of the Euphrates—     the king of Assyria with all his pomp.

It will overflow all its channels,     run over all its banks and sweep on into Judah, swirling over it, passing through it and reaching up to the neck! Its outspread wings will cover the breadth of your land, Immanuel! ' "

- Isaiah 8:1-8


Since King Ahaz rejected the Word of the Lord in 733 BC when Isaiah offered comfort and protection in Isaiah 7, the Lord sends Isaiah back in 724 BC with another message. This time Isaiah was to document his prediction/prophecy on a scroll in the presence of the high priest Uriah (2 Kings 16:10-11) and Zechariah (possibly the royal prophet of King Ahaz). King Ahaz has rejected Isaiah, but the King’s high priest and possibly his prophet, Zechariah, will be forced to witness the authenticity of Isaiah's words.

Isaiah writes Maher-Shalal-Hash-Baz which means, “swift to plunder and quick to carry away.” Then goes to his wife who conceives and gives birth to a son who is named Maher-shalal-Hash-Baz in 723 BC. Along with the naming of his son Isaiah gave this prophecy:

“Before this boy knows how to say, ‘daddy’ or ‘mommy’ the king of Assyria will plunder the capital of Israel.” (Within the next 12-24 months northern Israel had fallen to the Assyrians.)

At the Upper Water Pool (Isaiah 7) Isaiah had offered King Ahaz the “gently flowing water of Shiloah” (the Lord Almighty) as Jerusalem’s protection, but since King Ahaz is more impressed with the promises and threats of men, the Lord will bring the flood waters of the Euphrates (the King of Assyria) as Judah's “protection”, but the protection of man will consume the land of Judah.

Hekal (Hb) - palace (Eng) - The Hebrew word hekal means “palace” and “temple.” The hekal is the dwelling place of a god or a king.
1 Samuel 1:9 - tabernacle at Shiloh
1 Kings 21:1 - Ahab's hekal in Samaria
2 Kings 20:18 - in Babylon
Nahum 2:6 - in Nineveh
I will trust the Lord instead of turning to schemes.

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Affirmative Action

Ossuary burial boxes on the Mount of Olives.
Highlighting the Herodian street that can still be seen running along the Western Wall. (Photos and information concerning this New Testament street)
1 Chronicles 28 New International Version (NIV)
David’s Plans for the Temple
28 David summoned all the officials of Israel to assemble at Jerusalem: the officers over the tribes, the commanders of the divisions in the service of the king, the commanders of thousands and commanders of hundreds, and the officials in charge of all the property and livestock belonging to the king and his sons, together with the palace officials, the warriors and all the brave fighting men.
King David rose to his feet and said: “Listen to me, my fellow Israelites, my people. I had it in my heart to build a house as a place of rest for the ark of the covenant of the Lord, for the footstool of our God, and I made plans to build it. But God said to me, ‘You are not to build a house for my Name, because you are a warrior and have shed blood.’
“Yet the Lord, the God of Israel, chose me from my whole family to be king over Israel forever. He chose Judah as leader, and from the tribe of Judah he chose my family, and from my father’s sons he was pleased to make me king over all Israel. Of all my sons—and the Lord has given me many—he has chosen my son Solomon to sit on the throne of the kingdom of the Lord over Israel. He said to me: ‘Solomon your son is the one who will build my house and my courts, for I have chosen him to be my son, and I will be his father. I will establish his kingdom forever if he is unswerving in carrying out my commands and laws, as is being done at this time.’
“So now I charge you in the sight of all Israel and of the assembly of the Lord, and in the hearing of our God: Be careful to follow all the commands of the Lord your God, that you may possess this good land and pass it on as an inheritance to your descendants forever.
“And you, my son Solomon, acknowledge the God of your father, and serve him with wholehearted devotion and with a willing mind, for the Lord searches every heart and understands every desire and every thought. If you seek him, he will be found by you; but if you forsake him, he will reject you forever. 10 Consider now, for the Lord has chosen you to build a house as the sanctuary. Be strong and do the work.”
11 Then David gave his son Solomon the plans for the portico of the temple, its buildings, its storerooms, its upper parts, its inner rooms and the place of atonement. 12 He gave him the plans of all that the Spirit had put in his mind for the courts of the temple of the Lord and all the surrounding rooms, for the treasuries of the temple of God and for the treasuries for the dedicated things. 13 He gave him instructions for the divisions of the priests and Levites, and for all the work of serving in the temple of the Lord, as well as for all the articles to be used in its service. 14 He designated the weight of gold for all the gold articles to be used in various kinds of service, and the weight of silver for all the silver articles to be used in various kinds of service: 15 the weight of gold for the gold lampstands and their lamps, with the weight for each lampstand and its lamps; and the weight of silver for each silver lampstand and its lamps, according to the use of each lampstand; 16 the weight of gold for each table for consecrated bread; the weight of silver for the silver tables; 17 the weight of pure gold for the forks, sprinkling bowls and pitchers; the weight of gold for each gold dish; the weight of silver for each silver dish; 18 and the weight of the refined gold for the altar of incense. He also gave him the plan for the chariot, that is, the cherubim of gold that spread their wings and overshadow the ark of the covenant of the Lord.
19 “All this,” David said, “I have in writing as a result of the Lord’s hand on me, and he enabled me to understand all the details of the plan.”
20 David also said to Solomon his son, “Be strong and courageous, and do the work. Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord God, my God, is with you. He will not fail you or forsake you until all the work for the service of the temple of the Lord is finished. 21 The divisions of the priests and Levites are ready for all the work on the temple of God, and every willing person skilled in any craft will help you in all the work. The officials and all the people will obey your every command.”
New International Version (NIV)
Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by
Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
Jeremiah 34 New International Version (NIV)
Warning to Zedekiah
34 While Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon and all his army and all the kingdoms and peoples in the empire he ruled were fighting against Jerusalem and all its surrounding towns, this word came to Jeremiah from the Lord: “This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: Go to Zedekiah king of Judah and tell him, ‘This is what the Lord says: I am about to give this city into the hands of the king of Babylon, and he will burn it down. You will not escape from his grasp but will surely be captured and given into his hands. You will see the king of Babylon with your own eyes, and he will speak with you face to face. And you will go to Babylon.
“‘Yet hear the Lord’s promise to you, Zedekiah king of Judah. This is what the Lord says concerning you: You will not die by the sword; you will die peacefully. As people made a funeral fire in honor of your predecessors, the kings who ruled before you, so they will make a fire in your honor and lament, “Alas, master!” I myself make this promise, declares the Lord.’”
Then Jeremiah the prophet told all this to Zedekiah king of Judah, in Jerusalem, while the army of the king of Babylon was fighting against Jerusalem and the other cities of Judah that were still holding out—Lachish and Azekah. These were the only fortified cities left in Judah.
Freedom for Slaves
The word came to Jeremiah from the Lord after King Zedekiah had made a covenant with all the people in Jerusalem to proclaim freedom for the slaves. Everyone was to free their Hebrew slaves, both male and female; no one was to hold a fellow Hebrew in bondage. 10 So all the officials and people who entered into this covenant agreed that they would free their male and female slaves and no longer hold them in bondage. They agreed, and set them free. 11 But afterward they changed their minds and took back the slaves they had freed and enslaved them again.
12 Then the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah: 13 “This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: I made a covenant with your ancestors when I brought them out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. I said, 14 ‘Every seventh year each of you must free any fellow Hebrews who have sold themselves to you. After they have served you six years, you must let them go free.’[a] Your ancestors, however, did not listen to me or pay attention to me. 15 Recently you repented and did what is right in my sight: Each of you proclaimed freedom to your own people. You even made a covenant before me in the house that bears my Name. 16 But now you have turned around and profaned my name; each of you has taken back the male and female slaves you had set free to go where they wished. You have forced them to become your slaves again.
17 “Therefore this is what the Lord says: You have not obeyed me; you have not proclaimed freedom to your own people. So I now proclaim ‘freedom’ for you, declares the Lord—‘freedom’ to fall by the sword, plague and famine. I will make you abhorrent to all the kingdoms of the earth. 18 Those who have violated my covenant and have not fulfilled the terms of the covenant they made before me, I will treat like the calf they cut in two and then walked between its pieces. 19 The leaders of Judah and Jerusalem, the court officials, the priests and all the people of the land who walked between the pieces of the calf, 20 I will deliver into the hands of their enemies who want to kill them. Their dead bodies will become food for the birds and the wild animals.
21 “I will deliver Zedekiah king of Judah and his officials into the hands of their enemies who want to kill them, to the army of the king of Babylon, which has withdrawn from you. 22 I am going to give the order, declares the Lord, and I will bring them back to this city. They will fight against it, take it and burn it down. And I will lay waste the towns of Judah so no one can live there.”
  1. Jeremiah 34:14 Deut. 15:12
New International Version (NIV)
Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by
Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
Isaiah 35 New International Version (NIV)
Joy of the Redeemed
The desert and the parched land will be glad;     the wilderness will rejoice and blossom. Like the crocus, it will burst into bloom;     it will rejoice greatly and shout for joy. The glory of Lebanon will be given to it,     the splendor of Carmel and Sharon; they will see the glory of the Lord,     the splendor of our God.

Strengthen the feeble hands,     steady the knees that give way;

say to those with fearful hearts,     “Be strong, do not fear; your God will come,     he will come with vengeance; with divine retribution     he will come to save you.”

Then will the eyes of the blind be opened     and the ears of the deaf unstopped.

Then will the lame leap like a deer,     and the mute tongue shout for joy. Water will gush forth in the wilderness     and streams in the desert.

The burning sand will become a pool,     the thirsty ground bubbling springs. In the haunts where jackals once lay,     grass and reeds and papyrus will grow.

And a highway will be there;     it will be called the Way of Holiness;     it will be for those who walk on that Way. The unclean will not journey on it;     wicked fools will not go about on it.

No lion will be there,     nor any ravenous beast;     they will not be found there. But only the redeemed will walk there,
    and those the Lord has rescued will return. They will enter Zion with singing;     everlasting joy will crown their heads. Gladness and joy will overtake them,     and sorrow and sighing will flee away.
New International Version (NIV)
Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by
Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
"Theology is practical: especially now ... if you do not listen to Theology, that will not mean you have no ideas about God. It will mean you have a lot of wrong ones - bad, muddled, out-of-date ideas. For a great many of the ideas about God which are trotted out as novelties today are simply the ones which real Theologians tried centuries ago and rejected."
- C. S. Lewis

Hawaii is the only state that has a church growth rate that out paces its population growth. 13.8% of Hawaii’s population regularly attends church. Although, Arkansas, Oklahoma, South Carolina and Tennessee were close to keeping up with their population growth.

Rahab’s house is recorded as being in the wall of Jericho according to Joshua 2:15. In the excavated remains of Jericho there were houses built between the inner retaining wall and the outer wall of the city. (Details and photos)

"Do not gloat when your enemy falls;
when they stumble, do not let your heart rejoice,
or the Lord will see and disapprove and turn his wrath away from them."

- Proverbs 24:17-18

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