Spiritual Training

Spiritual Training X2

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July 28 - Evening

"Be stunned and amazed, blind yourselves and be sightless; be drunk, but not from wine, stagger, but not from beer. The Lord has brought over you a deep sleep: He has sealed your eyes (the prophets); he has covered your heads (the seers).

For you this whole vision is nothing but words sealed in a scroll.

And if you give the scroll to someone who can read, and say, 'Read this, please,' they will answer, 'I can’t; it is sealed.'

Or if you give the scroll to someone who cannot read, and say, 'Read this, please,' they will answer, 'I don’t know how to read.'

The Lord says:

'These people come near to me with their mouth and honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. Their worship of me is based on merely human rules they have been taught'...

...In that day the deaf will hear the words of the scroll, and out of gloom and darkness the eyes of the blind will see. Once more the humble will rejoice in the Lord; the needy will rejoice in the Holy One of Israel."

- Isaiah 29:9-13, 18-19

A Spiritual Hangover from Wrong Doctrine

29:9 Literal Hebrew says, “stupefy yourselves and be in a stupor”. Calvin says: “tarry and wonder” Rotherham says: “stand ye stock still and stare.” The point is that Isaiah is telling them to think real hard and try to figure out what he is saying. But, mockingly, they will never figure out his message because of their rebellion.

The main problem with Jerusalem is that the spiritual and moral leaders are so blind by their own traditional religious system that they can not even understand God’s revelation if it were written down.  The prophets and the seers do not understand what God is saying nor can anyone read and understand the words of the prophets or of the Law.

Jerusalem rejected the revelation that they understood. If people see the will of God and refuse to do it they will become incapable of seeing and doing any further thing God has revealed. As a result of this they will be spiritually blinded from understanding anything further. If you reject known spiritual truths, you will be cut off by God in the future from understanding other truth. This would result in Jerusalem slipping further and further away from God and into judgment. Intentional resistance and rebellion to God results in being left in the darkness of the soul.  In this condition a person will act out the darkness that is in them which will ultimately destroy their life and demand God's judgment.

This is fulfillment of God's words to Isaiah concerning his ministry in chapter 6 when God called him:

Go and tell this people: ‘Be ever hearing, but never understanding; be ever seeing, but never perceiving. Make the heart of his people calloused; make their ears dull and close their eyes.

29:10 Interestingly God does not rebuke the priests here but the prophets. The priest and the Levites were to lead the established worship and teach the people the law. The prophet was to wake the people up and call them back to the Law of Moses. The priest came from within the established religious system, but the prophets came from outside the system. (Or, if they where from a priestly family like Jeremiah they quickly found themselves outside the system.)

Revelation has been cut off. The people chose not to obey God, now they do not even remember. No one will be able to speak and explain the word of God.

29:11-12 Those who are trained and can read can not understand it. Those who are not trained can't even read it. The idea communicated here is that people are without hope in this culture because the trained religious leaders are too “drunk” on religion to understand revelation.  This leaves the discovery of the revelation to the untrained who can not even read it naturally let alone interpret it.

Notice that the scrolls and the doctrine is still there, it just can not be understood.

Because the prophets have failed to reveal God’s words (written in the scroll) the people have fallen into religious manipulation by the priest

29:13 Because they do not understand the revelation they must reduce it to rules and regulations. They turn it into a religion.

What then shall we say?  That the Gentiles, who did not pursue righteousness, have obtained it, a righteousness that is by faith; but Israel, who pursued a law of righteousness, has not attained it. Why not? Because they pursued it not by faith but as if it were by works. They stumbled over the stumbling stone. As it is written, "See, I lay in Zion a stone that causes men to stumble and a rock that makes them fall, and the one who trusts in him will never be put to shame." - Romans 9:30-34

Faith is seen here as a soft heart determined to respond and follow God. Not rules and regulations that are used to replace relationship and righteousness.

29:14 Because they are so dull spiritually that they cannot hear the prophet and they can not read the scriptures, God will have to shock them into understanding like he did when he brought them out of Egypt.

God will work a wonder. The Lord will upset any image they have of him fitting into their religious box. Throughout church history and in many countries God has exploded on the scene with a novel and amazing work without contradicting his word and character. But, also without consulting the local religious institutions!
Dichazo (Gr) – variance (Eng) – the Greek word dichazo means “to cut apart” and “to divide in two.” Dichazo is used in Matthew 10:35.
I will respond to God and not neglect what I know is right.
I will use what God has given me and not be careless with my responsibilities.

Bible Reading Descriptions Here


(morning only)

Complete Text

General Text


Relaxation and refreshing


Spirit of prayer and intercession
Religious Liberty

An arrow loop as viewed from the outside of the walls of Jerusalem. Archers would shoot arrows through this slot from the other side of the wall. See the inside view of an arrow loop. Look through an arrow loop from the Temple Mount into thd Kidron Valley.
Zechariah 10 detailed on a map.

Someone to Quote

"We fear men so much, because we fear God so little."
- William Gurnall

Something to Ponder

The projected church attendance in America in 2050 is 11.7% of the U.S. population. This is half of what it was in the 1990’s. (source)

Here’s a Fact

The city of Ashkelon has been under excavation since 1985. The gate of this large city has been uncovered along with a shrine to a silver calf. Ashkelon is mentioned in Joshua 13:3; 1 Samuel 6:17. The prophets condemned Ashkelon and it fell to Nebuchadnezzar in 604 BC. (The Gate. The silver calf god. Marketplace. Excavation site.)


"Blessed is the man who always fears the Lord,
but he who hardens his heart falls into trouble."

- Proverb 28:14

Coach’s Corner

The greatest miracle is salvation. The godliest spiritual manifestation is the transformed soul.

Ezekiel 34New International Version (NIV)
The Lord Will Be Israel’s Shepherd
34 The word of the Lord came to me: “Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds of Israel; prophesy and say to them: ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Woe to you shepherds of Israel who only take care of yourselves! Should not shepherds take care of the flock? You eat the curds, clothe yourselves with the wool and slaughter the choice animals, but you do not take care of the flock. You have not strengthened the weak or healed the sick or bound up the injured. You have not brought back the strays or searched for the lost. You have ruled them harshly and brutally. So they were scattered because there was no shepherd, and when they were scattered they became food for all the wild animals. My sheep wandered over all the mountains and on every high hill. They were scattered over the whole earth, and no one searched or looked for them.
“‘Therefore, you shepherds, hear the word of the Lord: As surely as I live, declares the Sovereign Lord, because my flock lacks a shepherd and so has been plundered and has become food for all the wild animals, and because my shepherds did not search for my flock but cared for themselves rather than for my flock, therefore, you shepherds, hear the word of the Lord: 10 This is what the Sovereign Lord says: I am against the shepherds and will hold them accountable for my flock. I will remove them from tending the flock so that the shepherds can no longer feed themselves. I will rescue my flock from their mouths, and it will no longer be food for them.
11 “‘For this is what the Sovereign Lord says: I myself will search for my sheep and look after them. 12 As a shepherd looks after his scattered flock when he is with them, so will I look after my sheep. I will rescue them from all the places where they were scattered on a day of clouds and darkness. 13 I will bring them out from the nations and gather them from the countries, and I will bring them into their own land. I will pasture them on the mountains of Israel, in the ravines and in all the settlements in the land. 14 I will tend them in a good pasture, and the mountain heights of Israel will be their grazing land. There they will lie down in good grazing land, and there they will feed in a rich pasture on the mountains of Israel. 15 I myself will tend my sheep and have them lie down, declares the Sovereign Lord. 16 I will search for the lost and bring back the strays. I will bind up the injured and strengthen the weak, but the sleek and the strong I will destroy. I will shepherd the flock with justice.
17 “‘As for you, my flock, this is what the Sovereign Lord says: I will judge between one sheep and another, and between rams and goats. 18 Is it not enough for you to feed on the good pasture? Must you also trample the rest of your pasture with your feet? Is it not enough for you to drink clear water? Must you also muddy the rest with your feet? 19 Must my flock feed on what you have trampled and drink what you have muddied with your feet?
20 “‘Therefore this is what the Sovereign Lord says to them: See, I myself will judge between the fat sheep and the lean sheep. 21 Because you shove with flank and shoulder, butting all the weak sheep with your horns until you have driven them away, 22 I will save my flock, and they will no longer be plundered. I will judge between one sheep and another. 23 I will place over them one shepherd, my servant David, and he will tend them; he will tend them and be their shepherd. 24 I the Lord will be their God, and my servant David will be prince among them. I the Lord have spoken.
25 “‘I will make a covenant of peace with them and rid the land of savage beasts so that they may live in the wilderness and sleep in the forests in safety. 26 I will make them and the places surrounding my hill a blessing.[a] I will send down showers in season; there will be showers of blessing. 27 The trees will yield their fruit and the ground will yield its crops; the people will be secure in their land. They will know that I am the Lord, when I break the bars of their yoke and rescue them from the hands of those who enslaved them. 28 They will no longer be plundered by the nations, nor will wild animals devour them. They will live in safety, and no one will make them afraid. 29 I will provide for them a land renowned for its crops, and they will no longer be victims of famine in the land or bear the scorn of the nations. 30 Then they will know that I, the Lord their God, am with them and that they, the Israelites, are my people, declares the Sovereign Lord. 31 You are my sheep, the sheep of my pasture, and I am your God, declares the Sovereign Lord.’”
  1. Ezekiel 34:26 Or I will cause them and the places surrounding my hill to be named in blessings (see Gen. 48:20); or I will cause them and the places surrounding my hill to be seen as blessed
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.
Psalm 80New International Version (NIV)
Psalm 80[a]
For the director of music. To the tune of “The Lilies of the Covenant.” Of Asaph. A psalm.

Hear us, Shepherd of Israel,     you who lead Joseph like a flock. You who sit enthroned between the cherubim,     shine forth before Ephraim, Benjamin and Manasseh. Awaken your might;     come and save us.

Restore us, O God;     make your face shine on us,     that we may be saved.

How long, Lord God Almighty,     will your anger smolder     against the prayers of your people?

You have fed them with the bread of tears;     you have made them drink tears by the bowlful.

You have made us an object of derision[b] to our neighbors,     and our enemies mock us.

Restore us, God Almighty;     make your face shine on us,     that we may be saved.

You transplanted a vine from Egypt;     you drove out the nations and planted it.

You cleared the ground for it,     and it took root and filled the land.
The mountains were covered with its shade,     the mighty cedars with its branches.
Its branches reached as far as the Sea,[c]     its shoots as far as the River.[d]
Why have you broken down its walls     so that all who pass by pick its grapes?
Boars from the forest ravage it,     and insects from the fields feed on it.
Return to us, God Almighty!     Look down from heaven and see! Watch over this vine,
    the root your right hand has planted,     the son[e] you have raised up for yourself.
Your vine is cut down, it is burned with fire;     at your rebuke your people perish.
Let your hand rest on the man at your right hand,     the son of man you have raised up for yourself.
Then we will not turn away from you;     revive us, and we will call on your name.
Restore us, Lord God Almighty;     make your face shine on us,     that we may be saved.
  1. Psalm 80:1 In Hebrew texts 80:1-19 is numbered 80:2-20.
  2. Psalm 80:6 Probable reading of the original Hebrew text; Masoretic Text contention
  3. Psalm 80:11 Probably the Mediterranean
  4. Psalm 80:11 That is, the Euphrates
  5. Psalm 80:15 Or branch


Psalm 135New International Version (NIV)
Psalm 135

Praise the Lord.[a]
Praise the name of the Lord;
    praise him, you servants of the Lord,

you who minister in the house of the Lord,     in the courts of the house of our God.

Praise the Lord, for the Lord is good;     sing praise to his name, for that is pleasant.

For the Lord has chosen Jacob to be his own,     Israel to be his treasured possession.

I know that the Lord is great,     that our Lord is greater than all gods.

The Lord does whatever pleases him,     in the heavens and on the earth,     in the seas and all their depths.

He makes clouds rise from the ends of the earth;     he sends lightning with the rain     and brings out the wind from his storehouses.

He struck down the firstborn of Egypt,     the firstborn of people and animals.

He sent his signs and wonders into your midst, Egypt,     against Pharaoh and all his servants.
He struck down many nations     and killed mighty kings—
Sihon king of the Amorites,     Og king of Bashan,     and all the kings of Canaan—
and he gave their land as an inheritance,     an inheritance to his people Israel.
Your name, Lord, endures forever,     your renown, Lord, through all generations.
For the Lord will vindicate his people     and have compassion on his servants.
The idols of the nations are silver and gold,     made by human hands.
They have mouths, but cannot speak,     eyes, but cannot see.
They have ears, but cannot hear,     nor is there breath in their mouths.
Those who make them will be like them,     and so will all who trust in them.
All you Israelites, praise the Lord;     house of Aaron, praise the Lord;
house of Levi, praise the Lord;     you who fear him, praise the Lord.
Praise be to the Lord from Zion,     to him who dwells in Jerusalem.
Praise the Lord.
  1. Psalm 135:1 Hebrew Hallelu Yah; also in verses 3 and 21
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.

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