Spiritual Training

Spiritual Training X2

August 18 - Evening

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August 1 - Evening

"As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, my God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God? My tears have been my food day and night, while people say to me all day long, 'Where is your God?' These things I remember as I pour out my soul: how I used to go to the house of God under the protection of the Mighty One with shouts of joy and praise among the festive throng. Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God."
- Psalms 42:1-5

Longing to Once Again Join the Worship Band


Psalm 42 begins “Book Two” of the collection of Hebrew psalms (Psalms 42-72). It is an accepted interpretation that Psalm 42 and 43 were originally one psalm. The reason for their division is unknown, but it could have been for liturgical purposes. The several reasons for understanding them to be two parts of the same psalm is:

1. Psalm 42 is titled, but Psalm 43 is not titled. You will notice that all of the psalms in “Book Two” of the psalms (Psalms 42-72) have titles with the only other exception being the next to last psalm in “Book Two,” which is Psalm 71. But, even Psalm 71 seems to be connected to Psalm 70 since it serves as an introduction to Psalm 71.
2. Hebrew manuscripts themselves exist that present Psalm 42 and 43 as a single psalm.
3. The same chorus is repeated three times after each of the three sets of verses which are presented like this:
  1. Stanza #1 (Psalm 42:1-4)
  2. Chorus (Psalm 42:5)
  3. Stanza #2 (Psalm 42:6-10)
  4. Chorus repeated (Psalm 42:11)
  5. Stanza #3 (Psalm 43:1-4)
  6. Chorus repeated (Psalm 43:5)

Psalm 42 is about someone being separated from the worship of God for some reason. It appears the separated writer was one of the Levites from the family of Korah who may have been physically removed from worshipping the presence of the Lord at the temple in Jerusalem because of exile, expulsion, uncleanness, sickness, travel or some other unknown reason.

The second best thing to being there for the Levitical worship service was the memory of having once been part of the “procession to the house of God….among the festive throng.” (Psalm 42:4) At least this person could recall better times of being in the midst of the crowd worshipping God as he sang and performed skillfully on his musical instrument.

This Levite compares his desire to worship God to the desire of a deer for water. This water is called “streams of water” which is known as moving water or living water in contrast to stagnant pools of stale water. So, of course, the psalmist compares the deer searching for streams of living water to his soul’s desire “for God, for the living God.” (Psalm 42:1-2) It is interesting to note that in this second book of Psalms the writers typically refer to “God”, or Elohim, instead of “Lord”, YHWH.

The chorus that is repeated three times voices the hope of the psalmist as he speaks to his own self that he will again “yet praise him, my Savior and my God.” (Psalm 42:5, 11 and Psalm 43:5)
Hupodeiknumi (Gr) – Warn (Eng) – a Greek word which comes from hupo meaning “under” and deiknumi meaning “to show.” Together hupo-deiknumi, “to show under” means “to give information,” “to share a private tip,” and “to point out” (as in Luke 3:7). The idea of hupodeiknumi can refer to thoughts making their way into the mind where they can be understood.
Today I will begin to be thankful for the great things that have happened in my past. I will remember the goodness of the Lord that I have already experience.



Bible Reading Descriptions Here

Narrative

(morning only)

Complete Text

General Text




Personal

An elderly person

Church

Vision of potential
Local economy
Germany



Original stone carvings and decoration from Herod's New Testament Temple time in the jamb of the Triple Gate in the south wall of the Temple Mount retaining wall. People visiting the Temple in the New Testament would have walked past this decorated gate jamb and ascended the stairs behind the blocked entrance on the right side of this photo to enter the Jewish Temple courts. (Details, Photo)
Details of the account of Deborah in
Judges chapter 4 on a map




Someone to Quote

(On taking an oath to uphold Magna Carta in 1253...)
"All these things shall I keep faithfully and undiminished, as a man, as a Christian, as a soldier, and as a king, crowned and anointed."
- Henry III (1207-1272),
King of England

Something to Ponder

Use these online flash cards to study and review the names of the Assyrian gods, then take the test -
Flash Cards and Test HERE

Here’s a Fact

Critics of Moses’ authorship of Exodus in 1400 BC instead assign the origins of the book of Exodus to the Jewish exiles in Babylon around 500-400 BC. The problem with the critics rejecting a 1400 BC date is the overwhelming amount of accurate details of Egyptian life, culture and land (slave-labor practice, royal court proceedings, Flora, fauna, language, geography of Egyptian) from the time of the Exodus. It is hard to imagine an author in Babylon 1000 years after the exodus writing a story that contains such an apparent familiarity with a land he had never seen from an age he had never lived in.

Proverb

"The way of the Lord is a refuge for the righteous,
but it is the ruin of those who do evil."

- Proverbs 10:29

Coach’s Corner

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

"We get our bread at the risk of our lives because of the sword in the desert. Our skin is hot as an oven, feverish from hunger.

Women have been violated in Zion, and virgins in the towns of Judah. Princes have been hung up by their hands; elders are shown no respect. Young men toil at the millstones; boys stagger under loads of wood.

The elders are gone from the city gate; the young men have stopped their music. Joy is gone from our hearts; our dancing has turned to mourning. The crown has fallen from our head. Woe to us, for we have sinned!

Because of this our hearts are faint, because of these things our eyes grow dim for Mount Zion, which lies desolate, with jackals prowling over it.

You, Lord, reign forever; your throne endures from generation to generation. Why do you always forget us? Why do you forsake us so long? Restore us to yourself, Lord, that we may return; renew our days as of old unless you have utterly rejected us and are angry with us beyond measure."

- Lamentations 5:9-22

Jeremiah’s Visual of the Consequences that Resulted from Rebellion Against the Lord


Food had been scarce during the last several years not only because of the siege, but also because of the famine that had struck the land. The lack of food continued even outside the walls of fallen Jerusalem. Attaining food was not only difficult, but also dangerous because of the raiders who moved freely through the land searching for food.

Dehydration (from lack of food and water) made the bodies of the Jews who remained in the land feverish and discolored.

The people left behind have been abused and continued to be abused:

  • Women who endured a two and a half year siege inside the city of Jerusalem were raped
  • Virgins from all the remote rural towns in Judah have been taken by Babylonian soldiers and officers.
  • Princes, the bodily remains of men from the royal family that did not try to escape with Zedekiah and where not taken back to Babylon are still hanging by their hands on the walls, buildings and trees for birds and wild animals to eat.
  • Elders are no longer recognized, in fact in Lamentations 5:8 it indicates that many of these former slave owners are now working mercilessly for their former slaves who had apparently been given some kind of authority by the Babylonians (These elders may have gone into hiding only to reappear after the Babylonian forces had left the land since 2 Kings 24:14 says, “only the poorest people of the land were left” after the 597 BC exile that took Ezekiel and the other craftsmen.)
  • Young men were forced to labor like an animal
  • Boys have had their childhood stolen from them since they now work like pack animals

Before the Babylonian invasion these people’s lives had been quite different:

  • Elders ruled with authority in the city gates
  • Young men played music
  • Women and young girls where filled with joy as the danced in the glory that came from culture with structure and freedom.
But, all this has changed because of sin.

The ruins of the glorious Temple and its courts on Mount Moriah are now nothing more than hunting grounds for wild jackals who are also scavenging this desolate land for food.

Yet, in this hopeless state Jeremiah ends his book of lamentation seeking the Lord and crying out for mercy. What else can they do? So, now, they wait in hope for their restoration.


Paideia (Gr) – correction (Eng) – the Greek word paideia refers to training a child with instruction. It can be translated: “discipline,” “correction,” “instruction,” “training.” Paideia is used in: Ephesians 6:4 – “Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord. Hebrews 12:5 – “And have you completely forgotten this word of encouragement that addresses you as a father addresses his son? It says, 'My son, do not make light of the Lord’s discipline, and do not lose heart when he rebukes you...' " Hebrews 12:7-8 – “Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as his children. For what children are not disciplined by their father? If you are not disciplined—and everyone undergoes discipline—then you are not legitimate, not true sons and daughters at all." 2 Timothy 3:16 – “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness."
I will consider the blessing I have today. I will thank God for the goodness I participate in everyday which include:
  • provisions
  • order
  • safety
  • relationships
  • hope


Bible Reading Descriptions Here

Narrative

(morning only)

General Text

Zechariah 13 (520-519 BC)


Personal

Parents

Church

Peace with opponents
Macedonia
Poor


The top of the Dome of the Rock on the Jewish Temple Mount is a crescent moon whose tips touch, creating a full moon. The moon is a traditional symbol of the moon-gods throughout the ancient Middle East throughout history. The Sumerians worshipped the moon-god named Sin whose symbol was the crescent moon (Gideon took the crescent jewelry from the invading eastern peoples called Midianites and Ishmaelites in Judges 8:24-26). The temple of Sin has been excavated in Abraham's old city of Ur. YHWH told Abraham to leave his culture, his land and his family who were worshippers of this Pagan moon-god (Genesis 12:1; Joshua 24:2). Throughout the Old Testament worship of the moon-god and other heavenly hosts is forbidden and met with judgment (Deut.4:19; 2 Kings 21:5; 2 Kings 23:5). This moon on the top of the dome of the Rock is aligned so that if you look through it, you will look straight toward Mecca, the seat of the Black Stone.
The Jot and the Tittle detailed in a diagram that helps explain Jesus teaching in Matthew 5:18.
Zechariah 13 New International Version (NIV)
Cleansing From Sin
13 “On that day a fountain will be opened to the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, to cleanse them from sin and impurity.
“On that day, I will banish the names of the idols from the land, and they will be remembered no more,” declares the Lord Almighty. “I will remove both the prophets and the spirit of impurity from the land. And if anyone still prophesies, their father and mother, to whom they were born, will say to them, ‘You must die, because you have told lies in the Lord’s name.’ Then their own parents will stab the one who prophesies.
“On that day every prophet will be ashamed of their prophetic vision. They will not put on a prophet’s garment of hair in order to deceive. Each will say, ‘I am not a prophet. I am a farmer; the land has been my livelihood since my youth.’ If someone asks, ‘What are these wounds on your body?’ they will answer, ‘The wounds I was given at the house of my friends.’
The Shepherd Struck, the Sheep Scattered

“Awake, sword, against my shepherd,     against the man who is close to me!”     declares the Lord Almighty. “Strike the shepherd,     and the sheep will be scattered,     and I will turn my hand against the little ones.

In the whole land,” declares the Lord,     “two-thirds will be struck down and perish;     yet one-third will be left in it.

This third I will put into the fire;     I will refine them like silver     and test them like gold. They will call on my name     and I will answer them; I will say, ‘They are my people,’     and they will say, ‘The Lord is our God.’”
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 40 New International Version (NIV)
Jeremiah Freed
40 The word came to Jeremiah from the Lord after Nebuzaradan commander of the imperial guard had released him at Ramah. He had found Jeremiah bound in chains among all the captives from Jerusalem and Judah who were being carried into exile to Babylon. When the commander of the guard found Jeremiah, he said to him, “The Lord your God decreed this disaster for this place. And now the Lord has brought it about; he has done just as he said he would. All this happened because you people sinned against the Lord and did not obey him. But today I am freeing you from the chains on your wrists. Come with me to Babylon, if you like, and I will look after you; but if you do not want to, then don’t come. Look, the whole country lies before you; go wherever you please.” However, before Jeremiah turned to go, Nebuzaradan added, “Go back to Gedaliah son of Ahikam, the son of Shaphan, whom the king of Babylon has appointed over the towns of Judah, and live with him among the people, or go anywhere else you please.”
Then the commander gave him provisions and a present and let him go.
So Jeremiah went to Gedaliah son of Ahikam at Mizpah and stayed with him among the people who were left behind in the land.
Gedaliah Assassinated
When all the army officers and their men who were still in the open country heard that the king of Babylon had appointed Gedaliah son of Ahikam as governor over the land and had put him in charge of the men, women and children who were the poorest in the land and who had not been carried into exile to Babylon, they came to Gedaliah at Mizpah—Ishmael son of Nethaniah, Johanan and Jonathan the sons of Kareah, Seraiah son of Tanhumeth, the sons of Ephai the Netophathite, and Jaazaniah the son of the Maakathite, and their men. Gedaliah son of Ahikam, the son of Shaphan, took an oath to reassure them and their men. “Do not be afraid to serve the Babylonians,” he said. “Settle down in the land and serve the king of Babylon, and it will go well with you. 10 I myself will stay at Mizpah to represent you before the Babylonians who come to us, but you are to harvest the wine, summer fruit and olive oil, and put them in your storage jars, and live in the towns you have taken over.”
11 When all the Jews in Moab, Ammon, Edom and all the other countries heard that the king of Babylon had left a remnant in Judah and had appointed Gedaliah son of Ahikam, the son of Shaphan, as governor over them, 12 they all came back to the land of Judah, to Gedaliah at Mizpah, from all the countries where they had been scattered. And they harvested an abundance of wine and summer fruit.
13 Johanan son of Kareah and all the army officers still in the open country came to Gedaliah at Mizpah 14 and said to him, “Don’t you know that Baalis king of the Ammonites has sent Ishmael son of Nethaniah to take your life?” But Gedaliah son of Ahikam did not believe them.
15 Then Johanan son of Kareah said privately to Gedaliah in Mizpah, “Let me go and kill Ishmael son of Nethaniah, and no one will know it. Why should he take your life and cause all the Jews who are gathered around you to be scattered and the remnant of Judah to perish?”
16 But Gedaliah son of Ahikam said to Johanan son of Kareah, “Don’t do such a thing! What you are saying about Ishmael is not true.”
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.
“Jesus “Christ is the object of all things, the centre towards which all things tend. Whoever knows him knows the reason for everything.” – Blaise Pascal (1623-1662), a French scientist, mathematician and thinker in his book “Pensees,” (meaning "thoughts") a defense of the Christian faith (read it here)


Luke was a medical doctor from Troas (Colossians 4:14). Luke’s use of medical terms in his Gospel and in the book of Acts have been noted by scholars (see commentary with Emphasis on Luke's Medical Terms here)


An imprint in a clay seal was found in Lachish that reads: “The property of Gedaliah who is over the house.” This clay seal had at one time sealed a papyrus scroll. The imprints of the fibers from this scroll can still be seen on the back of the clay seal.
Second Kings 25:22 tells us who this Gedaliah was, “Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon appointed Gedaliah son of Ahikam, the son of Shaphan, to be over the people he had left behind in Judah. When all the army officers and their men heard that the king of Babylon had appointed Gedaliah as governor, they came to Gedaliah at Mizpah….”
Details 1, 2, 3, 4
Photos 1, 2, 3


"A gift opens the way for the giver and ushers him into the presence of the great."
- Proverbs 18:16




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