27July2012 @ @ RandyP comments: index:BIBLEREADPLAN1 July27 Waiting on Thy name. We have a great deal to consider in our reading today. A good size dose of praise and thankfulness in the understanding for who God is. A good size dose of who we are, who we have been, what He is doing on us, what we will be. A short statement of what will happen to the man who closes his ears to these things. And a fantastic trip across the tempestuous sea's by one of God's greatest servants. We are left with the conclusion that there is no better reason for us to wait/serve than the very name of God and what so much that name means to us; to wait/serve under each and every situation or circumstance with no other fear; to humbly offer our thanks and to contritely pay our every vow.
29July2012 @ @ RandyP comments: index:BIBLEREADPLAN1 July29 The wearing of trials. David has clearly been through much. Paul has been through much. Both are going through something few of us will ever experience nor understand. THe two men deal with their trials in similar ways. David takes out a psaltry and a harp and sings praises. Paul spends time in fellowship with unexpected brethren. They rejoice. They are refreshed. They go right back into the battle with renewed vigor. Everything that they do they do for God; you would think that they would just want to step away for a moment, take a break from the service. Instead, this is what they live for, these are the true moments, this is the experience that they wish to share most with others, this is their brook of fresh mountain water: Praise and Fellowship.
July2012 @ July2012 @ RandyP comments: index:BIBLEREADPLAN1 July Job, David, Peter, Paul and the enemies of God. Another month of reading and journaling. What sense do I take out of it? Job had Satan a wife and three friends. David for all his court and counselors was surrounded to the point of trembling fear and depression. Peter was imprisoned, freed, but, then his congregation was persecuted and dispersed. Paul was stoned, scourged, left for dead outside many a town. In each and everyone of them God receives great praise. And then there is us. Where do we stand in this multi millennial transcendent struggle? Has the battle been won that we don't experience this any longer? Has the enemy just collapsed and retreated or changed tactic? Job, David, Peter, Paul, all of these men were surrounded by friends that thought they were doing right, thought that they were on their side, giving their support and wise counsel, only to be a passive or duplicitous audience. We should consider well the sheer evidence of mathematical probabilities here. We would like to think that we are moving forward and in the right, perhaps similar to one of these heroic icons. Yet the chances are more likely that we are doing little or nothing for or are moving against the modern heroes of our faith.
1August2012 @ @ RandyP comments: I noticed today going back through my comments and journal on the Book of Acts that I had lost my originally intended focus which was to be on the Acts of the Holy Spirit. I've learned that it is too easy getting caught up in the characters performing the storyline action. These persons however are being moved and events are being shaped in each and every case by the Spirit. It is like reading a book trying to watch the author, but if the story is good enough you loose sight of the author. This author however was very much involved in the story, the very reason the characters were able to do the things that they did. In a sense the Acts of the Holy Spirit were brought forth physically through the Acts of the Apostles. I will have to re-read the book and try better to keep the focus!
5August2012 @ @ RandyP comments: index:BIBLEREADPLAN1 August5 Knowing the heart. Today I wrote of knowing our spiritual infirmity, how it invents ways to perceptually distance God from us. I also wrote of the only two available conscious daily decisions we have to make having been crucified in Christ, serving the flesh or serving righteousness. It is one or the other. Serving righteousness is often difficult, tough choices have to be made and pathways established, self sacrificing. Serving the flesh is often quite easy, very little has to be done or sacrificed, tearing down is the norm not building up. This is why even as born again believers we make wrong choices; because we suddenly have choices. We fool ourselves into thinking that every choice we make is automatic and right. And then we have the audacity to further deduct that God has distanced Himself, withheld His promise, hung us out to dry. This too is serving the flesh, but, hey having two choices are better than having none. Which choice shall we make today?
6August2012 @ @ RandyP comments: index:BIBLEREADPLAN1 August6 The Law versus The Faith. How interesting that today we would be reading a lengthy recap of the effects of the Law and a scholarly explanation of the need for a new and better covenant. The results of the Law is seen over a millennium wide multi-generational record proving by the Law man may know what is right but lacks the ability to perform it. The effect of the new covenant in Christ is that the sin exposed by the Law is put to death and we are new creatures in Christ no longer married to it, that Christ has performed what we could not.
16August2012 @ @ RandyP comments: index:BIBLEREADPLAN1 August16 How did God fail? Two pictures. A picture of Israel not being able to sustain a focus on their miraculous God for any length of time; seems the harder He pushed the more resistant they became. The second picture one of the successful ministry of Paul to the Gentiles. One from the top down nation to individual. The other bottom up from the individual to the nation (or nations). The difference? The empowerment of the Holy Spirit brought within us by the sacrifice and resurrection of Jesus Christ. If God had failed in the first instance, what then is it that drove us to need a Jesus Christ? God did not fail. The situation surrounding sin and our sin nature is much much deeper than we would carnally allow. Thousands of years were spent ahead of time to prepare us for this stark conclusion. There is no other conclusion left to be made for God did not and can not fail!
19August2012 @ @ RandyP comments: index:BIBLEREADPLAN1 August19 The world by wisdom knew not God. Today's reading in Psalms leads us through some magnificent praise; not just empty praise, but, praise filled with particular knowledge about who God is and what God is doing. One has to seek deeper into it to see just how deep this knowledge really goes. By starting today in Corinthians we see a different knowledge, a knowledge the world would call knowledge that doesn't lead to any particular knowledge of God, a form of knowledge that God has promised to put to an end. We see a local church that should be a place to praise such magnificent praises being torn by divisions. The world's knowledge would see that and determine that this god type knowledge is as defiled as the rest; that is what the world knowledge is seeking to find from the god knowledge to begin with. To the un-pure in heart everything is defiled, everything is relative, everything is a personal perspective, it's knowledge is based entirely on just that. By the time Paul is finished we see this situation in a different light, a light where no one is to glory except in the Lord. What advantage then has the believer? That he is the Lord's. That the Lord will do with him what in the long run is merciful and right.
22August2012 @ @ RandyP comments: index:BIBLEREADPLAN1 August22 Faithful affliction. Interesting how today's reading in the 119th Psalm speaks speaks of man observant and conversant in God's statutes and precepts because the reading in Corinthians speaks of the Apostles life. The one reads that he is faithfully afflicted by God the other reads that he is afflicted for our sakes. Perhaps each one is speaking of the other. Both suffer, both require the Lord's help, both glory in the course laid upon them, both pursue despite the affliction all the more.
6September2012 @ @ RandyP comments: index:BIBLEREADPLAN1 September6 Open minds. Open mindedness is often no more than scorn and self justification. Today in the Proverbs we read of the fear of the wicked and how it will inevitably come upon them. We also read of the central core of the gospel faith "Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures...is risen...all things subjected to Him...Him to Father". Many will scorn. Many will go about as they've always done searching the secret and stolen depths. They would call all this open minded but, is it? Their fear shall come upon them. Then we shall see how locked tight their minds really were.
20September2012 @ @ RandyP comments: index:BIBLEREADPLAN1 September20 Today we read Solomon's conclusion that we should fear the Lord and keep His commandments, In Paul's testimony we see a man that did just that. It looks quiet a bit different than we might expect. Paul is not the only to suffer to bring us the wisdom and instruction called for by the truth. Truth must suffer the hands and tongues of the foolish. Fearing God is not in fearing what others may do to you, it is putting all of this aside for the unmovable service of/to God.
4October2012 @ @ RandyP comments: index:BIBLEREADPLAN1 October4 The Law and the Spirit. Today we find Isaiah speaking of the man on the street view of a rebellious people fleeing to Egypt to get away from the anger of the Lord. There is no doubt that living under the Law is hard for it is meant to be impossible. One eventualy has to come to the conclusion that it cannot be done and that all efforts to fulfill it are futile, might as well run or ask for the Lord's election to cease. Being the Lord's standard barer amongst heathen nations is no less an impossible task; much easier just to fit in especially when this Law thing just aint workin'. In Ephesians, Paul is writing to us of taking on the power of the Lord's might, preparing daily for spiritual warfare. The difference in this case is that the Law has been fulfilled by one man as it was meant to be, in Him we are equipped to fight His fight of dominion and principality. The Law served it's purpose leading us to Him and now we move forward in Him toward the heavenly task at hand by His strength, His Holy Spirit.
24October2012 @ @ RandyP comments: index:BIBLEREADINGPLAN1 October24 There is such a difference in tenor between our two readings today (the past several days in fact). In Jeremiah we are coming to a close of a great era of the Old Testament covenant. If God's intent was to show the necessity of the quickly approaching Messianic covenant, He certainly has done that. So we see proceeding our Lord's arrival the inability of the Law and Covenants and the utter disobedience of each and every imaginative heart. In Timothy however, we are reading of a young man, the second generation of the faithful, Spirit filled and Spirit lead, with the ability to better consider and obey the things of God having been transformed be the sacrifice and ascension and atoning blood of said Messiah. Surely there are still problems. It is still a daily choice and decision but, now at least that decision can be made and by grace fulfilled. God is justified in all that has passed by the tangible results achieved in the fulfillment of the first covenant within the envelope of the second. Signed, Sealed, Delivered!
5December2012 @ @ RandyP comments: I was thinking this morning in Daniel that this Old Testament is taking me through as master class in human government. I have seen from the time of Joseph through to the Pharaohs on through Joshua and Gideon and Saul and David and the line of kings down to the captivity the inner workings of a nation Israel/Judah. Now in captivity, I see the inner workings of one great empire and then a progression of other empires. I have seen the multiplicity of influence, the rolling cycles of affluence and poverty, the directions pulled and torn and put back together. I have seen leaders that stood for right, stood for wrong, stood for their own honor and shame. I've seen deceit, impulse, corruption, conspiracy along with murmuring and dissent. I've seen exile and banishment and insubordination and assassination. I've even seen the decrees of wise kings used against their better intents. I read today that the kingdoms of man are ruled by God and that He appoints whom He will over them. What then is trying to show us? What is the lesson I should take from this? Why has He spent so much written space to paint this picture for me? This master class... what does the final graded paper say? It should spell out our dire need for the coming kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ the Son of our living God.
January1 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesusgeneva@Matthew:1:1-17 - 42 generations. A span of some 1950 years. Peoples lives and peoples future hope in God. It is a long time preparing mankind for the Savior's entry. There has been nearly a constant steady movement towards this moment when Son becomes incarnate flesh. Things are about to take a sudden turn. The taskmaster, the Law is about to be fulfilled and the Law of Grace about to superceed it. What do we find as the faith our Lord possesses in this geneology?. 1. His faith in the Father's plan, His judgment, His timing. 2. A faith in the Holy Spirit's abilities once the Son comes into this flesh and a faith in the same when He departs. 3. A faith in His own complete submission. 4. A faith backwards to include salvation to those this life has passed, a faith present into the salvation of those with whom He will be here with for 3+ years, a faith future toward the salvation of thise who will believe based on these present men's testimony. It is a large faith that we hope to look more deeply into as this journal continues.
January2 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesusgeneva@Matthew:1:18-25 - I notice the sequence of events surrounding Joseph and see details of the faith my Lord posseses. Joseph finds out, Joseph considers what to do, Joseph has it explained after the fact by an Angel, Joseph consents to what is already in motion. The Lord's faith seeks the consent of participating individuals. To gain that consent, at least in this instance, He proceeds before hand, creating the need for consideration and consent. Surely, He knows these people well enough to know their answer, but, it is a faith that is inclusive of other peoples needs and creates and at the same time proceeds with what must be done for the good of all mankind. In effect He is showing a faith in Joseph. He must have prepared Joseph and Mary for this consent along with everything else.
January3 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesusgeneva@Matthew:2:1-12 MAGI - The Herods play a key role in Gospel events, their first incling of Jesus received at the hands of a band of of mystics or astronomers from likely Persia (recent captors). The appearance of this band is certainly troubling to the public in Jerusalem as well. This is not a quiet and polite announcement. Of interest is how the Spirit allowed this Herod to become aware of the occurance of the Messiah's birth with such a disturbing foriegn parade and yet snuck the parade out the backdoor so as not to reveal anymore. Our glimps into the faith of Jesus remains with His preliminary consent beforehand, knowing that He would not be received by His own, and that significant handeling/directing of the human nature was to be required of the Holy Spirit at least during the time of His infancy.
January4 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:2:13-18 EGYPT - Events and situations are already beginning to form around the young child before He says or does anything; before his first steps most likely. These movements are based solely upon what He might represent to others. The faith of Jesus here is seen in what He had consented to before hand. Unlike any other religious icon Jesus came to be tested and to be proven to/by those who He came save. He would not become savior just because He declared Himself so, not because of some vision under a tree meditating on nothingness or some collection of thoughts gazing into the vastness of the night sky, but, because the Father submitted Him to our doubting suspicious manipulating tests. Anyone could portray themselves to be from God, only one could be proven starting even before He was barely conscious and absolutely powerless, totally in the hands of His Father. This is the Faith of Jesus, what He consented to. This is what makes His faith different from any other. This is what we need to find and keep within ourselves as well.
January5 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:2:19-23 RETURN FROM EGYPT - The savior of the world could have grown up or even based his ministry from anywhere, Egypt, Rome, South America, etc... It was not the Father's will though; the plan was to save the world by fulfilling the promise made to Abraham and the exact details given long ago to the prophets. Joseph is not told Nazareth specifically. Unless he himself knows of the prophecy, his own fear and protective sense leads him to the fulfillment of God's prophecy. Our Lord's faith, again by previous consent, is that He has come first as and for the children of the covenant and by that then also the rest of the world. He has also come that all prophecy may be fulfilled. No other religious icon has been prophesied to such extraordinary detail and fulfilled it thus passing the test of our scrutiny. Our faith needs to be placed in exactly that!
January6 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:3:1-12 THE BAPTIST JOHN - The old prophecies fulfilled are beginning to flood forth. John is now a fully reasoning and consenting adult and so is Jesus. John is sent to prepare the way for Jesus and the way is through repentance. Jesus is relying on the timing of the Father in order to kick off His active ministry. God's timing is likely based upon the Levitical shadow or type regarding the Passover Lamb and it's requirements. He is close to beginning the time of inspection. The preparations made these millenniums are many and exact, just as the requirements of the role Messiah; they are not just anything some ambitious wanna be wants them to be. Jesus is prepared to go up against every imaginative preconception (and there are many even amongst the most devoted and zealous) to achieve His Father's will. It is His faith. Is it ours?
January7 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:3:13-16 BAPTISM OF JESUS - Two main keys: 1. That righteousness is not just something we are or He is or we become or He has imputed on to us, it is also a action/event/command needing to be fulfilled toward the greater whole of righteousness; 2. The reason for doing a righteous thing does not need to be known or well reasoned, suffice it for now, without a full explanation, it is proper for the two of us inclusive to do this. Not just anyone can make the second claim. It is because of the righteousness of Jesus that the act being proposed can be suffered face value for now. If it were a scoundrel asking us to do this on face value no questions asked, we would have been bamboozled. Our Lord's faith then is first in the righteousness of the Father and the Fathers plans/abilities, second that this act/event further fulfills righteousness, third that we would be able to see/sense His sum of righteousness and therefore know it is safe/proper to act upon His promptings without having to know every detail before hand. We can fulfill the righteousness He inclusively intends to act out with us. John may have plenty questions about why this had to be done later that day, theologians may have many similar questions today, it is a rather odd event. Suffice it for now Jesus has led John into doing something very righteous; like two polarities of faith met together on both men's part (He has the faith in you that you will join Him in doing it, you have the faith in him enough to follow along and get it done).
January8 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:4:1-11 THE TEMPTATION OF JESUS IN THE WILDERNESS - There is more than a books worth of journaling to be done here, this is the much condensed version. The Spirit leads Jesus to a place to be examined by the devil, Jesus has given Himself into the Spirit's hands at all times (we are not told that the Spirit just dropped Him off), Satan has no power over Him at any time other than to attempt to test Him; Jesus had willingly submitted Himself to this and this is faith one. Knowing the source of this inquiry, Satan, the best strategy is always to refuse doing/showing/proving anything, being able to identify that this was Satan is made clearer as always by a. knowing/believing God's will/plan and b. days of devoted fasting and communion with Spirit/Father and c. seeking/memorizing not only scripture but the underlying principals involved; this is faith two. Some preachers make this event to sound as some monumental battle of wills and enticements. I believe this to be an event where both fighters had each other sized up before hand and that Satan was staring face to face with his ending, making sure that this one was the true one come in the flesh.
January9 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfFaithkjv@Matthew:4:12-17 JESUS BEGINS TO PREACH - There are two linguistic ways of translating this. John said "repent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand". Jesus said the same thing but, the same words also can be used to say "repent for Royalty is near to you". It is not a stretch to say that He meant both. Think of all the reasons one would want to repent, burden of sin/addiction/abusiveness/guilt/despair/etc... They are rather short sighted are they not? Jesus has a much bigger frame of reference, millions if not billions of redeemed souls, God's creation in communion as they were meant to be. Why should you repent? Why should any of us repent? Because the Kingdom and the Royal One are at hand! The Lord's faith in this regard is much much bigger than our minds can grasp.
January10 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:4:18-22 THE FIRST DISCIPLES - Our Lord's faith is not only in heavenly and ethereal things but, in four common fishermen (soon to be twelve common men total ). When we think about the effect/impact Jesus needed to make in the short time that He had available, the stock of well prepared/educated people to draw a team of disciples from, it is illustrative of the faith that he had in these few particular men and this sort. There were hundreds of disciples, but, there were only twelve Disciples. After His death, these are the men whose testimony would be used to spread the gospel to the entire world. How did He know that they would follow? How did He know that they would be able of heart, mind and body? Better yet, what did they see in Him? Was it not His faith in them? His faith in His Father? His faith in the redemptive plan?
January11 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:4:23-25 GOING ALL ABOUT - Three important parts to Jesus' early ministry, teaching (instructing), preaching (exhort reproof convince) the gospel of the kingdom, healing (taking from) all manner of sickness/disease. These three went hand in hand. Word of Him spread throughout Syria particularly because of His work with a diversity of untreatable diseases and torments. Of these torments there is listed a descending order, the possessed, the lunatic (moon struck or moon cycled), palsied (epileptic). People from the region packed in tight around him to follow. Word traveled in the form of rumor and innuendo as much as by testimony no doubt faster and deeper than a hundred thousand watt radio antenna would today. In modern social media terms the word went viral reaching even to the hard hearts in Jerusalem. Today we have faith in broadcast mediums reaching vast masses. Jesus had the faith of one on one contact; what you see the Father doing, that you do.
January12 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:5:1-12 BLESSED ARE - If sin is the cause of all unhappiness/dread/curse, then theses attitudes go a long way to setting things back aright. Jesus is saying that these are 'the' attitudes... be this... thus we remember them as the beatitudes. These attitudes lead first to the acceptance of a Lord and Savior and then continue after as a result. The produce is properly a spiritual happiness, but, the word happiness in English has been considerably diluted. There is a notion of joy filled contentment even in the face of adversity, a sense of virtuous imperative moral excellence and the courage to stand against the viral hostility of wickedness, the calming certainty of a future tense reunion and just reward. Blessed is not only a vision of how man will one day be, it is a image to be held by those of such deepened spiritual traits. These are all traits of putting it all into God's hands, these are all traits heavily shunned by the natural man. The flesh is at enmity with the spirit. Jesus would not have declared this had it not been His faith.
January13 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:5:13-16 SALT AND LIGHT - Think of light as being His glory. Think of salt as being His glory. There is no other. We become vessels of that light and vessels of that salt on earth by accurately reflecting His glory. We can easily become vessels of a light trying to be hid, vessels of salt that becomes unsavory. How would we become that? Not accurately reflecting His glory. If our light shining before all men is the light of our many good works then Christ's glory is hid, others will not see it as anything other than our own works nor will He receive the praise. If our light shining before all men is the light of His glory then they see our many good works as His and correctly give Him the glory. It is the faith of Jesus that in His earthly course He Himself must accurately reflect the glory of the Father exclusively; what He see's the Father do... that He does. Many great works are accomplished from this reflective mindset plus to each and every work He rightly and perceivibly gives the Father the entire credit. Likewise, it is His faith that we too would see what Jesus is doing and do it exclusively that so that when people see Him working through us they rightfully give Him the praise. We are preordained to do these good works because they are the works of Christ in/through us. We abide in His vine, we produce His fruit.
January14 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:5:17-20 THE LAW BY JOT AND TITTLE - The faith of our Lord is written all over this passage. First that He did not come to destroy the Law/Prophets, He came to fulfill. There is the letter of the Law and the spirit of the law. The spirit of the Law is that it was meant all along to be a vehicle to convict all men of their sin and drive men to repentance and acceptance of the remission of sins secured in the blood of the promised Christ. Christ fulfilled the spirit of the Law by proving even to the most ardent adherents of the Law their utter inability yet to escape sin (as in their adherence they broke every single one of their commandments putting Messiah to death). The relevance of the Law never ends until the sinner is brought to the point of depending solely upon the grace and righteousness of Christ. The second article of faith presented is that the righteousness that He would impute upon us believers through His death and resurrection would far exceed the assumed righteousness of even the most zealous and fanatic adherers of the Law. His faith is quite unlike any other's indeed.
January15 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:5:21-26 BUT I SAY UNTO YOU (MURDER) - 'Okay, so this is the way you have been taught, the way that I am about to teach you is the way it needs to be taught'; this is essentially what Jesus is saying. For instance, consider murder (one of several similar considerations). The key twist is the word 'therefore' because it ties two very different thoughts (so we think) together. You are bringing your gift to the alter. You remember or become aware of another person having ought against you. What ought would another have? An ought that places you in danger of judgment/tribune/hell fire. The alter that you thought you were standing at has become the throne of a Judge, in His hands you have been delivered to stand for the sin of murder. How so? A person was kept from heaven because you religious person were angry at him without cause. A sister was kept from heaven because you made her to feel her worthless. A struggling sinner was kept from heaven because he was called or was treated like a fool. Who have you kept from heaven's gate in your own pursuit to this alter? Who soul have you damned? This is a murder beyond all murder, the murder lasting eternity; the type of murder never considered nor taught against by men. Our Lord's faith is in a much higher calling, a completely different frame of mind and self image. All men fall short. All men have done this. Where then have we repented? Where have we turned our course? Agree with thine adversary quickly whiles thou art in the way with him....
January16 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:5:27-30 BUT I SAY UNTO YOU (ADULTERY) - The common teaching again falls short. It sees sin as actions and this action of adultery as mutual and consentual. Sin is of the heart however. You could cut eyes and limbs, anything would be better than nothing, but, you would still have the heart. The purpose of the law is to point us to the need for Christ, for Christ to be our fulfillment, not to provide a way for us to legislate against the flesh. One would have to legislate it in so many areas to the point where it would become sick and tired of any law and rebel against it out of spite. You cannot legislate the heart. The heart has played a trick already on us in defining adultery down to a remote and distant action. How many other other areas has it done this? It is Jesus' faith that the Law is correctly in place and can be used with the correct discernment to show us this errant heart. Remember He said 'blessed are thou'. Why? Because He 'has not come to destroy the law but fulfill it'. In what way then am I blessed? Because broken and humbled and contrite we turn to Him to be our fulfillment. It is our Lord's faith that Law and Grace (a specific grace - He Himself) work hand in hand to separate/lift men from their sin stained hearts.
January17 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:5:31-32 BUT I SAY UNTO YOU (DIVORCE) - The common teaching again falls short, this time concerning the writ of divorce. A vow is made before God, one or both want out. Adultery has been made atleast by one as defined in the previous verses perhaps even murder regardless of whether any act has been commited (throw in false worship and lying as well). The common teaching would be to draw up a writ of divorce presumably to legally protect the helpless wife. The spiritual effect of such a teaching is that not only would sin be allowed and continued, that it would be multiplied beyond anyones narrow minded intention. Even at it's sincerest best, the heart is looking from it inside out to search what God may have meant by a commandment. The faith of Jesus is that He is looking from outside in, knowing as the Father would know the command's intention, viewing down into the effects of the heart's self fashioned faulty drive and reasoning. The allowance we cloth divorce in is the same filthy wardrobe we dress our other sins up in. If only we could see as He does the naked truth.
January18 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:5:33-37 BUT I SAY UNTO YOU (OATHS) - This one questions tradition more than any one commandment. We are commanded not to lie or deceive surely. We are commanded to bare not false witness. The taking of an oath in a court of law may be required. Tradition in everyday religious life however held that your commitment to performing a general oath was backed and guarantied by the full weight of God or object of reverence to Him. The problem is man does not fully revere obey God and by swearing by God His name becomes associated with ones lying and deceit and manipulations. Despite even the best of intentions oaths are often left off. The oath becomes a very real form of false worship which in effect then is being encouraged by these religious traditions. God is not the guarantee of our intentions, He is the object of our obedience. It is the faith of our Lord that reverence, obedience, commitment, truthful witness and worship all need to proceed solely from a pure heart and clear conscience; a heart that need not be propped up with flowery promises or name associations. As a good teacher He must be fully aware of what is being taught and from what heart it is being taught from. As good listeners so must we.
January19 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:5:38-42 BUT I SAY UNTO YOU (RESIST NOT INJURY) - The common teaching all revolves around an eye for an eye; equal measure retribution for personal injury. Three men's actions are given for example, one smites your cheek, one sues, one impresses you into some form of civil or royal task/service. The fuller teaching is that equal in a mans mind is not always equal. Physical retaliation for instance is not always most prudent, exceeding the eye for eye when you yourself are judged/indebted is encouraged, as is going an extra mile when pressed into some unsought service; it doesn't always mean personal injury and that it has to be resisted. Various situations differ. Eye for an eye was meant to address self empowered self righteous lynch mobs, applying it to all situations leads to a sense of victimization and entitlement. It is not always warranted and often merely continues the cycle of excess. Discretion, discernment, valor, impartiality, searching the evidence/testimony, etc... are the better forms of justice. Personal retaliation outside of normal course of law must be thought out seriously. There is an example of Jesus being smited on the cheek kjv@John:18:22-23. It is the faith of our Lord that though He would suffer personal injury He would not allow His reactions no temper/impulse to it to destroy the work and time at hand. His eyes are fixed on the prize ahead and not the violations against Him. He is asking for us to be the same.
January20 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:5:43-48 BUT I SAY UNTO YOU (ENEMIES) - Every man determines himself his enemies. The label enemy can also be influenced by peer pressure, religious indifference, racial prejudice, false witness, etc.. What criterion then is to be used? Justice? The common teaching has become the mentality of us against them, just versus unjust. The fuller teaching is that God makes his rain to fall upon all. There is a higher calling, to love even a much proven enemy with the love of God; to see others as God sees them. If we needed any further prompting, God added a reward for such. The faith of our Lord is much the same. Though He is surrounded by the wicked and the unjust and the foolish and the hardened and the negligent and the abusive and the timid and the disbelieving and the... (you get the idea), the core of a man's heart that makes Him at enmity with God, His love yet remains all the more. It is not just for them that we should do this, it is for Him and for our own selves.
January21 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:6:1-4 ALMS - For the needy receiving alms you'd think that the end result would be the same; what difference does the motivation of the giver make when the money is handed over? For the giver the difference seems to be in their personal final reward. But is it? Perhaps the true difference goes back to the earlier mention of being a shining light and salt, it is in the accurate reflection of God light. If Jesus is the fulfilment of the the law, if He has become our exceeding righteousness, if we are of truly broken and contrite and meek spirit, then alms is one tangible measurement of our sincerity and ability toward these spiritual objectives. In one manner His light is hidden and in another more secretive way the light is in full view. As much as the needy need to have our alms, they need to see it in God's light. The question may be whether God rewards us regardless of the outcome to the needy person or is the outcome all important to the reward? The faith of our Lord is in tangible things done from the proper heart making His light shown to those who need light most.
January22 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:6:5-15 PRAYER - The objective of prayer, the sincerity of prayer, the secretiveness and repetition are all products of the heart. The honest heart will proceed one way, the confused or deliberate heart another. Prayer reveals much about ones image of God. Is He a candy machine? Is He a genie sworn to our three wishes? Is He close, distant, friendly acquaintance, or divine supreme? Reverence and forgiveness are brought up as key indicators. The Lords prayer reveal much about His faith, that the Father is above all, that His rule is sovereign, that He is provident, forgiving, delivering, supreme, omnipotent, glorious and eternal. How we treat others is as much of a product of how we view Him as anything other; especially along the lines of forgiveness.
January23 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:6:16-18 FASTING - Purpose. Why does one fast? Jesus fasted. What reason did He have to fast. The description here of the hypocrite seems obvious, but, it's implications far reaching; there are ways unbeknownst to us (less obvious) that our reverence toward God is stained deep with hypocrisy. Some things more honest like trying to set an example or encouragement for others to emulate can easily be confiscated by lesser intentions. Some group activities set off to be more pious and grandstanding are highly contagious. Truly, I don't think many start off intending to be hypocritical, it is just that it is so natural to drift off that way. The Lord is asking us to take an inventory not only with fasting but, with all of the observances and ritual we follow. Do these things by all means, but do them from the right heart. It is the Lord's faith that religion and worship and observance like fasting are ways of putting the flesh aside momentarily in order to draw closer to the Father. Being closer is reinvigorating and strengthening when done first and foremost in the honesty and reverence deserved of the Father's honour.
January24 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:6:19-24 TREASURE AND SERVICE - The Lord's faith is in a much larger vision or time reference, eternity. This life is the potting soil for something much bigger. For us to spend this present time absorbed and deeply hidden within it is to not peek out from our shell to see the breadth and scope beyond. So you do everything in this life for this life? When this life is taken away, what then do you have left? His faith from there is further expanded adding singleness of vision on top of it. The demands of this life are not trivial but they can be distracting, even re-absorbing. These daily demands are meant to mold and develop us, proof us. Only by single focus on that which is above are we kept from being buried/destroyed by the desperate things below. It is His light, shown in His faith that we are meant to grasp hold and serve.
January25 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:6:25-34 NEED - There are some things within our control. There are things outside of our control. There are things that consume our time and worries that probably shouldn't that we think that we must take control that pulls us far from God. It is not that He doesn't want us to have what we truly need. It is not that He doesn't know that we need them. It is that He wants us to seek His Kingdom and righteousness first. Busy buddies and worry warts are what we are, always an excuse, always another reason, little progress or control, many things spinning further out of control, and for what? Something that He knows that we need? Something maybe that we don't need? Something that may bring further worry and desperation of control? The Lord's faith is firm, God's glory, God's Kingdom first. Once settled and firmly planted then prayer, once prayed for and trusted then patience and obedience and then a willingness to accept that if it is not His will it may not be needed.
January26 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:7:1-6 JUDGEMENT - Judgement is so very closely related to hypocrisy. We are so much willing to hold others to a standard that we would never hold ourselves to. We can sniff out hypocrisy in others from a mile a way, perhaps that is because we fully expect it. Judgement cannot be avoided in our day to day lives. Most every activity and relationship encountered in a day requires some form of judgement. It is not judgment that is being forbidden here, it is the type of judgement; the most common type - Hypocrisy. One should learn to expect it from themselves and know how to look for it. We want to be judged a fair judge, one whose judgement applied first and foremost to their own-selves. Judge as one who knew his on weaknesses yet was brave enough to battle his weaknesses and to help others through theirs as well. What use is it to strive not to judge at all, neither owns-self nor others? The Lord's faith is not that we will become a bunch of passivists, it is that we will be able to judge right from wrong, truth from falsehood, help from oppression........
January27 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:7:7-12 ASK SEEK KNOCK - Let's take this in context for a minute. If we were to ask for what we have already ready, what would be asking for? His Kingdom to come and Will to done on Earth as in Heaven. Our daily bread spiritually first and for our physical needs. Forgiveness of our trespasses in like measure. To be led from temptations such as judging one another from such hypocritical eyes. What does it mean to seek this? To seek it from Him? To seek Him to develop it within us? To seek as a distant wish or as daily presentable action? To hunger and thirst for His righteousness? What does it mean to knock then? It is the faith of the Lord that you have at least this in you. That you will see the need to ask. That you will search through our darkness for His light. That you will knock for the door to be opened for you. Would He really say no to this or provide something other?
January28 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:7:13-14 NARROW - The narrow mind today is much frowned upon. The modern mind is conceded enough to think that anywhere it goes that there is something there for it, that a narrow mind is missing out on what ever it is that is there. What if what is there is destruction? What is the narrow mind missing out on? Many consider Jesus to be an excellent teacher on most everything but this one point. What if Jesus is not speaking from opinion but from observable fact? One would ask 'Observable from whose standpoint'? From the incarnate Son of God's! Are open minds rather too narrow to consider that the Son of God would not see it as such? To consider that He made it to be so with reason?
January29 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:7:15-23 FRUITS - Two lives are examined by their fruits; a third is implied. The two are extremes but produce similar corrupt fruit, false prophets and those who presume to do the Lord's work but are not. To Jesus the equation is simple: good tree good fruit, bad tree bad fruit; no in between to consider. What in life is so stark in comparison? Spirituality! It is either born of Him or not. Does that mean that we do no wrong? No that means that He is able to produce good fruit through us as we abide in His tree. Think of all the elements discussed so far in this sermon (low and meek to self/reflecting His light/having all righteousness fulfilled in Him, convicted under the fullest sense of the law, non-hypocritical/judgmental, will be done, seeking first.... ). Is there any doubt that this tree can produce nothing other than good fruit in the big picture? The faith of our Lord sees the stark division between good and corrupt, works of flesh and of spirit, fruit born of Him versus all else that is not. He is sure of our path.
January30 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:7:24-29 THESE SAYINGS OF MINE - Therefore. Therefore what? Therefore everything He has said in this sermon is something supremely wise for us to take hold and build our faith/lives upon. It is our Lord's faith that this series of sayings will make the needed spiritual difference in us. Not only will we be built up but built on solid indestructible footings, all focused and centered upon His righteous fulfillment of the righteous eternal demands of His/our Father. The difference is as radical and stark as darkness and light. The fruit of which exceeding the righteousness of the most zealous scribes and legalists. The entirety of fulfillment would still not be available to us until His death and resurrection, but, He is well on His way to providing us the reasoning and the means of the Father's plan. This one sermon is without doubt the greatest most concise and all encompassing teaching delivered by any person in human history. Well worth re-reading kjv@Matthew:5-7
January31 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:8:1-4 I WILL - Was the leper part of the show or part of the testimony? Jesus wanted him to be healed but, did not want him to tell anybody except as required by the Law. If part of the show, such a cleansing would garner great press and recognition. If part of the testimony a man would be healed and the Law fulfilled. Strangely, as a consequence, it seems that straight/honest fulfilling of the Law would bring greater press through controversy. The faith of our Lord does not operate on human terms of what will certain people think or what result will stir from this, it operates from the center of what is right to do. If it stirs controversy amongst this or that group, fine, it is because they are unaccustomed to seeing what is right being done. If ever you have opportunity to ask our Lord if He wilt.. be prepared for Him to say yes He wills it... oh and all of the consequence that comes along with that. The man might have better asked "do you want that I should stir up the hornet's nest by you doing simply what is right?" You see the faith of our Jesus do you not?
February1 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:8:5-13 MANY SHALL COME SIT DOWN - The Centurion was a gentile Roman captain over one hundred. When the Lord says many from the east east and west, He means to include non-Hebrews at a banquet alongside even the Jewish patriarchs. When He says I have not seen such faith in all of Israel He is pointing to the fact that amongst His own something has been left amiss, apparently with their perception and acknowledgement of His authority. An outsider is portrayed as being in the inner circle while many of the covenant children are left out in the darkness. The man's faith and perception of authority is made an example of. The faith of our Lord believes that both Jew and Gentile would be able to see and sense His authority and thus be petitioned of to be put to use for the good of others. We are not told of the servants faith, but, we do know that he was healed by the faith of another convinced of our Lord's authority.
February2 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:8:14-17 HE TOOK AND BARE - When Jesus healed where did the sickness go? The answer may lay in the word bare. Some would say that He took it into Himself and thus bare it. Others would say that He lifted it or carried it away to some other place and thus bare it. The fact is that we do not know for certain. There is the verse that say by His stripes we are healed; those stripes generally considered to be at His scourging before the Roman soldiers; suggesting more of a payment/price paid rather than a consumption. Could these healings have been paid on a promissary note? The faith of our Lord in this regard is in the prophet Isaiah, that through him (and select others) the Father had beforehand mandated the steps to be followed by the Christ. Not only was Jesus given the ability to do so He had the mandate to follow, it was then left to His willingness and obedience to accomplish. Even if we are not sure of the where sickness, we have the what how and the why.
February3 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:8:18-22 HOLES AND NESTS - Our lives are filled with priorities. One man believes he can set Jesus as his number one priority, Jesus asks him to consider more carefully just how much of a priority that commitment could become. Another man has Jesus as his priority but another priority temporarily becomes more the priority, Jesus asks him to reconsider. The Lord knows our hearts and our lives. He knows that they are controlled by priorities; priorities that we ourselves set. At this particular time, given His short stay, His disciples priority had to be one thing and one thing only. Even during His time here at times He worked within other peoples commitments (Peter's mother in law for instance) to make His message known. Now that His pathway for us has been paved, though we be not removed from being His disciples, neither are we to remove ourselves from our vows and obligations. The message is that we make those vows and obligation and we set those priorities; not to make those rashly or hastily or foolishly that they become a distraction from our true obligation following and serving the discipline of our Lord. Not to let those involvements become an excuse for not proceeding further in the Lord's work. Understand how much sacrifice and commitment our discipleship must at all times be. Our Lord's faith is shown in how single minded and dedicated His obligation and priority was and is.
February4 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:8:23-27 YE OF LITTLE FAITH - A storm rages and Jesus sleeps. Were the disciples to have the faith enough to speak to the storm on their own to allow Him more sleep? Were they rather to have the faith that Jesus the Son of God Holy Redeemer was not to die in a sudden storm fierce as it was? Who brought the storm? In whose hands are is the storm controlled? Storms rage around us today, even storms of emotion and circumstance and consequence and accident. They are beyond our control. They threaten us with disaster and injury, even death. Is it not that even in death God is in control? Is there not anything not within His control? Where then is the fear? Trust the Lord, lean not on your own understanding, in all your ways acknowledge Him. Our Lord's faith is that in us (as hard as it seems for us to find) that within us there is the ability to have this certainty of mind, that He can lead us to this place of faith/trust, that our fear of Him be not displaced by the fear of the storm.
February5 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:8:28-34 BEFORE OUR TIME - Demons have a time? We dive into the realm of the uncomfortable. Most of us have reduced this life down to a series of good and bad choices. Devils and demons are but characterizations of thought patterns/tendencies. What makes a thought pattern jump from two men into a herd of swine making them rush to their death over a cliff? The faith of our Lord knows a much larger battle with fierce and possessing entities that are just as aware of their allowance and time frame as He is. The people that watched and the people of the city that later heard about this reacted in a very troubling way. Some commentaries suggest that they were troubled by the loss of the herd. I suggest that they were troubled by there limited understanding of discomforting spiritual realities.
February6 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:9:1-8 THAT YOU MAY KNOW... ARISE - Does Jesus actually link palsy to sin? It could be read this way. However, if so why did He not say 'that you may see that sin causes palsy and that I have the power to forgive sin'. Would He have left the man at 'good cheer' had it not been for the thoughts of blasphemy in the audience? We have a observable evidence here in being able to walk. We have an unobservable evidence here being forgiven. Could it be that this healing was meant to be testament to His power as Christ first and foremost and if Christ then the power to heal as well as the power to forgive? The audience seemed to think that God had given a power to men. The power to heal palsy by the casual forgiveness of sins? Or the power to come to a Christ who has the proven authority to do either or both? Is it easier to say forgiven or arise? Both are impossible to say if you are not Christ. The faith of our Lord is in the authorities given Him by the Father for the purposes of performing the Father's will. Not only does He believe in such, He is willing and able to demonstrate such; both observable and unobservable.
February7 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:9:9-13 I AM NOT COME BUT - 'Why eateth your Master with publicans and sinners' tells a lot about the frame of mind of the so called righteous. We are all sinners. The fact that we would not consider ourselves sinners would preclude us from inviting a savior into our home dine. The message is not so much in who Jesus ate with but, who would allow themselves to eat with Jesus. Some would feel it an honor to host the Lord, to invite as many friends and citizens along with to meet with Him, to celebrate a moment face to face with divinity; others would be disgusted and ashamed at the very notion. These are the so called righteous. There is not much one can do for these people, they feel no need for a savior. The faith of our Lord is not going to beg and plead at the door of these people for whatever tiny morsels that they are unlikely to offer. He goes where He is needed and accepted and invited. Maybe that will make them mad/embarrased enough to reconsider their indefensible position.
February8 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:9:14-17 BUT THY DISCIPLES - Some of the remaining disciples of John the Baptist are a little behind the times now. The are struggling making the transition from 'preparing the way' to the 'I am the Way'. They are willing to follow the message of repentance, willing to follow a similar legalism to the Pharisees, but, not willing to follow the Christ. Many of us are in a similar position having done everything religious up to accepting the person of Christ. Without the person of Christ the religion of man is of no value. The person of Christ is not a patch placed on old leaky wine sack, it is an entirely new bag altogether. Neither Pharisee nor Baptist can patch the difficulties and inconsistencies of their faith, neither can we. The followers of Christ must be born from new stock; spiritual not human stock, the stock bonded together in the person of Christ. Afterwards by comparison the two stocks will have similar appearances and functions but, will be entirely different in their initiation motivation and intents. The faith of our Lord is in the new. He fulfills the old, we become His new.
February9 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:9:18-26 THY FAITH HATH MADE THEE WHOLE - It is one thing to go along with the flow against Jesus, another when presented with a deep need that you rebellion cannot negotiate and He becomes your only chance. Jairus is a ruler of the synagogue. We are not told whether he was a believer either before or after, we only know that he was for this moment. The woman with issue took it upon her own, nothing had been said about touching His garment to be healed that we are aware of. Surely many people had touched Jesus, she however believed. Had they not need or faith or initiative? Is Jesus looking for a certain type of faith? Perhaps a faith planted by the Spirit alone that becomes all one's own? A inner faith that compels a person to do the unlikely? Propels a person against the tide of the mass of commonality? The faith of our Lord does what it sees the Father do. In a crowd of many outward faiths it sees the lone inner faith as a indicator of the Father's doing and therefore does the Father's will to it in response.
February10 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:9:27-34 SEE THAT NO MAN KNOWETH - Why wouldn't Messiah want all the press that He could get? Two blind men and a man possessed healed, never so seen in all Israel? Is it a test of these men? Are the crowds getting out ahead of Jesus and what work He really must do? Yes and yes Is it a principal He is trying to teach or a fulfillment of the Law He must follow? Yes and yes The faith of our Lord is always in view of the big picture. At His level the picture is vast, the considerations manifold yet simple. In obedience and submission to the Father He exhibits the character traits of patience and temperance and humility and spiritual alertness and knowledge and......
February11 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:9:35-38 MOVED WITH COMPASSION - Shepherd-less sheep scattered and torn about. He was probably the only one there that day that saw it that way. There were those that may have thought that they were doing a pretty good job holding the flock together. Those that thought that they were just steps away from having it all. There were plenty of others that thought that they were protecting themselves and others from Him. What He was looking at was the result of thousands of years of the human heart bending the Law into something unrecognizable, the consequences of deceitful ambitions trying to make it right on it's own terms. He was moved with compassion. Not blame mind you, though He knew where blame laid. Compassion. Not condemnation, they were already condemned. In the midst of this sight the faith of our Lord sees a harvest of souls and laborers going out to do the harvest. We are to pray for laborers, that the Father would send them. These laborers are important in the plan. Souls are ripe! Do you see that?
February12 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:10 FREELY YE RECEIVED, FREELY GIVE - Twelve men sent out like sheep to the wolves. You would think that men with these powers and this kingdom message would be gladly received. Is it not time in Israel for such good news and such manifestations? Wouldn't one's own family be ecstatic? We see the depths of the sin nature, the news is not well received, in fact it is vehemently opposed. They might say that they want a sign but they are not willing to let the sign into their own household. They might say that they want God's mercy but they are more willing to forcibly escort you outside of their city. The truth is very upsetting. Always has been. Always will be. The truth exposes the heart, all of it's imaginations, all the games it would rather play. These twelve men, their hearts are barely any different. The faith of our Lord is in these twelve men. He pairs them up and sends them out with His anointing. Who is to say that they will do according to what He commands any more than we ourselves would facing such resistance. They are targets. They are being shown something that He knows all to well. The nature of man is evil to the core. Healing and deliverance and justice and the kingdom here and now, those are just words, disturbing words. Proven with an undeniable God given anointing to such human and common men, fighting words.
February13 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:11:1-19 OFFENDED IN ME - What would John the Baptist have to be offended in Jesus for? In the list of things that He is doing? In the way He is going about it? In the violence the kingdom is suffering because of Him? Is it to John or to John's disciples that Jesus answers? If so they treated the prophets who gave the prophecies, how so would they treat the one who fulfills those prophecies? Offended in Jesus? No rather that we should be offended in man's nature. The faith of our Lord comes as light into the darkness and the darkness receives Him not. Not even John the re-embodiment of Elijah is fully aware apparently. How plain can it be who He is and what He is doing, yet, so hidden by the heart? So tempting to be covered over?
February14 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:11:20-24 UPBRAID - How could a God of love be so uncompromising and mad? Like no other time before the Lord pours Himself out in mighty works with the intent of convincing us His deity, His power, His worthiness, our standing within His love and mercy and judgment. It is not like He hasn't poured Himself out before, for He surely has. It is that this is the time for all times that His people have looked forward to and His people will look back on as the one time He really put it all out there face to face. This is His showing of love. This is His showing of full acceptance without any compromise; His full on love sent direct and in person. And what do the people do? They attempt to explain it away however they themselves see it. They attempt to contain it in a wrapper of improbability; try to make it something it is not; something to be disrespectful of. The faith of our Lord is that enough people will take a hold. What He is willing to offer is greater than any other thing that this life/death could hold. Some will take hold seeing Him in the smallest of His expressions. Some will require His largest efforts. Only one time will He present His case in person and if that is not enough what further then can He do? He will give it time for our decision, but, at some point it will be time to take His loved/loving ones and move along.
February15 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:11:25-30 GOOD IN THY SIGHT. Jesus prays to His Father. It is comforting to see that He prays for what is good in His Father's sight; disturbing that He thanks Him that the opposition of the wise and prudent is divinely intended. After all, if you cannot trust the wise and prudent who can you trust? We must first ask does He hides it or they hide it from themselves? Isn't the title wise and prudent self sought and self proclaimed? What is wise and prudent truly about intellectualizing a god of ones own making? A God for something other than what He is? God is someone not to be thought up but, someone revealed. Not revealed by the thinking up/down of the wise and prudent, revealed instead by His very presence, His expressions and mannerisms, His passions/dissatisfactions/involvements. He shows Himself. A person must accept who He is, as He has shown Himself and then so come to Him burdens and all. Like as to how He came to us, meek and lowly, we come to Him. The faith of our Lord is that this is all good in the Father's sight. Not everyone will agree, they will think themselves wise as they want to be. Not everyone will allow themselves a real glimpse, they will think themselves prudent. If they are not willing to see the God in man who now for this moment stands before them they will not see man God chose to become in order to most convincingly reveal Himself. How wise and prudent does one really need to be if not to see what is so persistently obvious?
February16 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:12:1-14 LORD OF THE SABBATH - Can the Law legislate against mercy? The intent of Sabbath is for rest. Rest from mercy? How hungry were the disciples? Hungry enough for this to be considered mercy on the Lord's part? How withered was the man's hand? Not enough for him to wait till Sunday? Surely the Law cannot contradict its deepest fulfillment mercy but, our interpretation of it can. The work of mercy as long as it is indeed mercy never rests. It is the faith of our Lord that these disciples have gone too long without eating, that this man has gone too long without the use of his hand, that this fallen sheep is in too much danger, that the opportunity to provide a needed mercy is at hand, that even if it means breaking somebody else's awkward interpretation of Sabbath it is well worth Him proceeding. After all, He is the Lord of the Sabbath.
February17 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:12:15-21 MY SERVANT - Matthew ties a quote from kjv@Isaiah:42:1-4 into the reasoning Jesus did not want the people to make Him known. It appears to revolve around the judgment that He intends to shew to the Gentiles and the plots that are beginning to solidify from the Jewish leaders. Israel and His covenant to them remains in His heart but, not everything He does is strictly for Israel. In a sense Israel will have to come around in the future to this understanding of revelation and in great measure the Gentile nations will be used to drive them to this conclusion. For now, everything He does, every act of mercy, every piece of indisputable logic, every revealing parable only goes to anger them all the more. Their minds are now set against Him. Jesus does not snap, does not get unruly, does not turn away, His judgment is crisp and clear and evident and victorious to all honest observers. The faith of our Lord is not only in the past and the present, but, in the future; how pieces all come together as a whole. Words and deeds are one thing. The examples He lays out another. How they all play out in the end, that is the beautiful thing; the miraculous thing that can only be done by this God's servant and the spirit place upon Him.
February17 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:12:15-21 MY SERVANT PART 2 - I should not neglect to state as well that we need to see Jesus as He sees Himself, The Servant. This brief stay on earth is not about Him, it is about serving His Father's will. He is revealing the Father as never before to the future generations and to the many nations. With humility and meekness and tenderness He is showing forth a truly victorious form of judgment. His judgment could have included press and publication and mass outreach, but, instead His judgment was for the individual (here..this is your healing...do not tell) and for His disciples (go..as you have freely received). Service is not rewarded at the present time, reward is a long hard road. And so it is for The Servant; My Servant. Thus is the faith of our Lord.
February18 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:12:22-37 BIND THE STRONG MAN - This passage seems to be more about the Holy Spirit than any one else. kjv@Acts:10:38 declares that Jesus was anointed fully with the Holy Spirit. Here He is saying that one strong proof of His kingdom is that the Holy Spirit casts out demons, He literally binds Satan and steals away the spoils of his house. Satan would cause division in his own kingdom if he were to do this. Men by trying to explain this as something other are in fact blaspheming the character and work of the Holy Spirit; the more serious forms of knowingly blaspheming the Spirit will not be forgiven. The logical conclusion is that the tree is either good or bad, no in between, proven by it's fruit. Judgment is given as much upon words and accusations such as these as any of our works. The faith of our Lord is in His anointing. His anointing is the Holy Spirit. Our consideration and respect for the person character and works of the Holy Spirit is of utmost importance to our salvation. Be careful then how you try to explain these things that He worked in Jesus and now the followers of Jesus away.
February19 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:12:38-45 THIS GENERATION - Wait a minute...which is it? Is this a potential christ or a definite devil that they are asking for a sign from? Certain scribes? Whose kingdom is it now being divided? Be careful what you ask for a true sign demands a reciprocal action - repentance. Others have witnessed less and repented; do these certain men really know what they are asking for? We have mentioned here both an evil/adulterous generation and a wicked generation. One is seeking a undeniable proof. What would they ever do with such a truth if it meant disposing of their evil/adulterous ways? The other is accepting of the proof to the point of a cleansing, but, yet leaves the door wide open to be overcome by much more of the same. For a moment we are thinking of an individual man possessed, but, the conclusion involves a generation; this generation. The only sign offered to them is the only sign offered to us... the sign of His Resurrection. It is the faith of our Lord that this particular proof is to be timeless, ultimate and undeniable. Those that do dispute it do so for their own exaltation and peril. For the generations looking forward, the generations looking back it should be more than needed to conclude and repent to it's certain salvation. For those of this generation it is their dividing moment.
February20 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:12:46-50 STANDING WITHOUT - Is Jesus saying that His mother and siblings are not doing the will of the Father at present? What were they going to tell Him? That they were being followed every where they go? That strange cults were beginning to develop outside the house regarding Mary? Was the public's curiosity making carnival acts out of their own lives? Were they projecting their own stress upon Jesus and asking Him to come home, rest, let things cool down? Were there threats circulating? It would all be conjecture, but, surely their quiet lives have been burdened as well. This lifestyle is not anything that they would have chosen themselves, at times it may have even been understandable for them to resent. Jesus is not pushing them away, He is desiring for them to come along side. He is asking them to consider the larger picture, the adoption of a great many into the brotherhood of the kingdom. The faith of our Lord regards many issues as one; it all comes down to obeying the will of God. It would be easy to be pulled aside by this problem or this concern or that wise motherly counsel. His followers must be able to follow along with Him even through the impossible and uncertain as much as is both humanly possible and spiritually empowered. Without this frame of mind we too could find ourselves outside the crowd insisting to advise Him on something that in the grand scheme of things is of little consequence.
February21 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:13:1-23 TO THEM IT IS NOT GIVEN - As Jesus looked onto the crowded shoreline this parable was written out all over their many faces; each of these four profiles identifiable. Therefore He spoke to them in parable. Why did He speak to them in parable? Because it was not given for many of them to understand. Huh? Their hearts are fattened and their ears are heavy. People were looking to come up with it on their own without it being given by this sower. A sower plants a seed into the ground, the ground does not plant the seed itself. The ground might be willing to receive any and every other form of foreign seed but why not this one? Because it is the seed from this particular sower. Because He plants the seed expecting a very particular fruit. It is the faith of our Lord that for a few souls in this crowd that the understanding will be given, that the understanding will be tested, that the understanding will set one apart from the rest, but, that the fruit will well be worth the process it took to bring it forth.
February22 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:13:24-30 WHILE MEN SLEPT - The Kingdom sowed but, certain men were apparently given the responsibility of watching over the field and did not. While they slept the enemy came in and planted near identical yet false seed. This parable goes hand in hand with the original Parable of the Sower. Wouldn't it be good to know that along with your personal struggle to bring forth fruit that there is a field (world) of other believers going through the same process? Wouldn't it be equally as good to know that not everyone that you would think by appearance is of the same stock? No one would know until the final fruit was harvested. It is interesting that all the enemy had to do is plant the seed and then go about his way. Are these darnel seeds subject to the same process of root and depth and parching sunlight as the wheat? Most likely. Is one required to grow the other? Apparently not. What then is the difference and how can they be identified? Not even the servants from above can tell until the final fruit is bore. Once intermingled, removing the one would uproot the other. Imagine for instance the prospects of the Protestant church if ever the Catholic Church was removed or vise versa. The faith of our Lord is in that while this did not need to happen it was going to and did happen because men do sleep. It is deceptive to say that all paths lead to God when not all seed leads to the same fruit, when not all seed is planted to the same intent by the same kingdom. While we cannot identify the measure now amongst ourselves, He certainly can when all things come to fruition.
February23 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:13:31-35 SECRET FROM THE FOUNDATION - There may be a way to look at these parables and have them confirm what we have known all along. Jesus intends though to reveal things that have been concealed up until now and this/that parable. One must ask 'what do I understand now that until this parable was not known'? To do that one must search deeply with more than a passing glance. If the tiniest of seeds becomes a substantial tree, if the Kingdom hidden in three measures of meal raise the entire loaf, what new thing then does that mean? I think that the casual reader gets that He is talking about increase or growth here. Do they get what it is that is growing? Isn't the example of leaven also used as a analogy to spiritual corruption? Isn't the mustard seed used of the size of faith? Commentary cannot answer everything for you. Somethings simply must be searched out by one's self. To know that the true meaning is deep down into what has been concealed is an invitation into the parable. To know that parables are only opened up to the honest and sincere of reverent faith is a discipline. It is the faith of our Lord that all those that truly ask/seek/knock will find this wisdom and that this wisdom will grow out into every area and aspect of the believer's life. That the lives of believers together and united will combine throughout the world and ages to be supernaturally more than can be found in just one person.
February24 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:13:36-43 SO SHALL IT BE - The Lord's explanation of the 'Parable of the tares' has more to do with the end of the tares than anything else. 'He that hath ears to hear, let him hear' He concludes. There is a consummation of time when the angels will be used to gather the tares for burning because they offend and do iniquity. They offend because they are moral agents of the enemy and even in their best of intentions/deeds they commit iniquity. Remember how often Jesus has spoken of no middle ground, the tree/fruit is either good or evil. Given that for so long there was little way for anyone else to tell the difference from the wheat this must come as a shock to a great many. The difference must be quite obvious in the final fruit. Many have faith in some form of His non-judgmental universal compassion, the faith of our Lord is not only in the execution of judgment but, that the judgment that He intends is entirely righteous; it is the ultimate form of compassion to those on whom it will be placed.
February25 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:13:44-46 WHEN A MAN HATH FOUND - Is the man described here one of us or is it Him? Could be either, but, not as you might think. There is not anything that we could sell or trade to buy the kingdom of heaven ourselves. The price is not in our hands. The price has been paid however by Him. Is it so much to ask that we would not be better off now selling all that we have that is holding us back in this life for His life to live in us? He once said 'where a man's treasure is, there will be his heart'. Peter later implored 'having done all to make our calling and election sure'. There is the grace that saves us, that pays our price for us. There is the grace that we release ourselves into as a daily living sacrifice. There is the exceeding and overflowing grace that we share as a result upon others. The faith of our Lord is that He is willing to pay the price for this type of kingdom, even if it means hiding it away for the time that it takes to come up with the price. Now that He has the price, this is what He most wants to see and what He is most willing to give Himself entirely to. How about us?
February26 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:13:47-52 GATHERED OF EVERY KIND - Ah so all paths do lead to God; God's judgment. The Kingdom of Heaven is the net drawing up all types. A division is then made between the wicked and just as performed by angels. The basis of distinction appears to be clear black and white with little guess work or inquiry. The wise scribe is one instructed in the net that aptly draws from old and new testaments to convince men to change their ways in light of this judgment beforehand. These disciples surrounding Jesus now many will be writers documenting and testifying to what they have heard and seen. We have insight into their rationale and method by understanding the net. It is because of and through the Kingdom of Heaven that this all can take place. It is the faith of our Lord that the Kingdom of Heaven is now come and is further coming, that He is the key component of this net that makes this judgment holy and right. Because of Him the believer becomes just by imputation and the non-believer becomes wicked by insolence. The differentiation is simple based on ones belief in Him.
February27 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:13:53-58 BECAUSE OF THEIR UNBELIEF - The people of Nazareth were astonished but, not in the right way; they were astonished that the son of their well known carpenter was causing such a national disturbance. They may have even been witness or over-hearers of the burden Jesus' fame was placing on the rest of the family in these parts. Perhaps there was an embarrassment of their own. Here we see the limits of miracles, they are easy to write off, overlook or to see in the wrong light. Some would theorize that Jesus needed others to believe that He could do it in order to make a miracle happen, therefore He did few miracles during this time frame. It seems more likely that there was no point in wasting the efforts if they were just going to produce more of the same feelings of offence. Jesus limited Himself to mostly teaching, not that He didn't want to offend but, that He didn't want any progress to be set back. As always, He did what was right/given. The fact that this response from others was predicted by Isaiah (and others) should have alerted those in the know to caution or even quiet optimism. kjv@John:7:15-16 John records that Jews even marveled thinking that He was untrained. Jesus' reply was quite simple 'My doctrine is not mine, but his that sent me'. The faith of our Lord is in knowing that human perception is always biased but can be swayed in some with much effort exposing falsity and truth. Others this effort merely offends. Miracles/signs can get into most doors but, not necessarily their hearts. You do what you can do with these doubters and leave it in God's patient hands for the rest.
February28 @ @ RandyP comments: m[FaithOf Jesus] kjv@Matthew:14:1-12 AND TOLD JESUS - John upset the wrong person... Herodias. Her scheme to win Herod's favor/obligation via the daughter from her first marriage is plotted and carried out; John is done away with cleanly with little public fuss. John angered one wrong person, Jesus angers them all. Rumors of riots and revolution around the much beloved John's death never come to fruition. The inconsequential public after math gives the elites a false sense of confidence and control that may effect decisions when it comes up later to Jesus. This passage is as much a statement about the sheepishness of the adoring general public as it is the haunting guilt of Herod or the soap opera happenings within his court. John says something that says should be clear to any citizen Jew only none of them stand behind him. Jesus says many things that should be apparent to any human being and He too stands alone. People who stand alone stand out. People who stand out are troublemakers or at least can be presented as such by those that want Him dead. The faith of most men is to play the game and keep the peace. The faith of our Lord is to proceed ahead revealing the thought and intents of all men even in His death. Some would have us to think that the human heart simply needs convincing; the Gospel suggests rather that it needs to be exposed.
March1 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:14:13-21 LOOKING UP TO HEAVEN BLESSED - Jesus performs miracles for many individuals, for the twelve disciples specifically, and for groups large and small. After a day of many individual healings it may be easy to loose sight on the 'for whom' and 'by whom' all such things are done. Jesus looks to the heavens. The disciples offered a logical plan and conclusion. Jesus took their humane effort in this case releasing the masses to fend for themselves as an excuse for not putting their wellfare into the Father's hands, thanking Him for what they did have and asking His blessing upon that. In all it is a perfect conclusion to day filled with wonder, a time to refocus on 'whom by' and 'whom for'. It is the faith of our Lord that it is the Father and Spirit by whom these things come about. They are doing it for the Son. The Son is to stand apart from all others so that He may lead the people's hearts back to them. He stands apart because the Father and Spirit are doing for Him. This is not as much about having the power to do so as it is the power being done for Him. He in turn thanks and blesses and continues to be obedient to the course laid out.
March2 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:14:22-36 COME - I doubt if Peter walked on water by any measure of his own faith as most readers would interpret. He walked by Jesus power alone. Remember that the question never was could man walk on water as well, it was 'if it is you Lord bid me to come'. It is a test of whether this appearance is Jesus Himself or a haunting spirit before him; or else where would a odd request such as this come from? So Peter sinks. Did Jesus no longer bid because of Peter's fear/doubt? In other words did Peter's faith have to meet Him half way? No I don't think so! If so then it was not all by Jesus' power. Rather, it is being shown to a frightened Peter that yes this embodiment standing impossibly before him in the midst of a fierce threatening storm Him is indeed Jesus his Lord. Then, in a somewhat humorous way, Peter is dunked into the water for having thought that anything other could come between himself and his Lord's bidding. If this is not the intended message, why then would the disciples not be practicing the next few days on the shoreline in order to build their faith to the point that they could consistently walk on water? Why then would this teaching not come back up, or others have walked? Instead, the faith of our Lord is that at some point we will realize without any doubt in any situation who (and where) He is and what He can make us to do if He bid; that nothing can come between us and that.
March3 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:15:1-20 OFFENDED - The base context throughout this passage is that it is not what goes into the body that defiles but, what comes out. Lying, deceit, accusation, threats, perversity most assuredly. What is that is coming out in this case? Accusations based upon tradition, traditions based upon a heart and lips though religious far from God. How far from God? Far enough to sanction the breaking of one of the Ten Commandments honoring father and mother. Break one commandment and you've broken them all. How far? Far enough to have the gall to accuse God in the flesh of breaking a tradition of the elders. If broken by this one tradition, how many other traditions as well? What we must realize is that everything surrounding Jesus at this moment is the product of everything that mankind has been able to do up until now, God given or not. What was true in Isaiahs' age is just as true now. None are found righteous no not one. Without Christ the person this is as far as any measure of religion gets. What goes into the heart is nothing but the refuse of other defiled hearts and whatever ones defiled heart can make of that. No heart is not changed until the person-hood of the risen Christ dwells within. God is not experimenting with the right combination of things until He gets human nature right. Everything the Godhead has done up to incarnate Christ has been to show the absolute human need and dependence for Christ. What Jesus sees around Him in every direction is nothing but venomous tongues, even in His disciples. The faith of our Lord is that what He is doing at this moment, what He is about to do on His cross is exactly what is needed for mankind. In one sense He is repulsed by the utter defilement constantly exhibited by all. On the other hand His overwhelming love for those who will eventually believe and come to His light is much much greater. His being here is not by mistake. What then is our response? Are we offended also?
March4 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:15:21 NOT SENT BUT - I don't think that the Lord is giving this Phoenecian gentile the brush off. There are several at least partial references to Jesus/Gospel coming to the Jew first. God in His righteous wisdom and for the sake of His covenant with Israel has foreseen the maximum benefit to the entire world will be gained through the initial and final emphasis on the lost house of Israel. In the middle of these two points is an age primarily of the Gentiles. It is because of the Jew's rejection of Christ that the Gentile is grafted into the Kingdom. Jesus signals to us herein a soon to come means of grace to all believers by drawing out of this woman a desperate but amazingly humble confession of faith. Jews should take careful note of this particular exchange. The faith of our Lord is in the entire plan for all mankind by means of a single point of injection, the rejection of the one tissue producing the antibody in the another returning in the end to immunize the fevered and rejecting tissue.
March5 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:15:29-39 HOW MANY HAVE YE - Ever notice how Jesus is using whatever the disciples have available? In the days of the Exodus He brought the manna from Heaven out of nowhere; it had nothing to do with what anybody there had available. Now that He is the manna from Heaven, whatever the disciples have available He is making it work. Maybe this is the way His healing works at times as well! I think that we often skip passed the three non stop days spent by the multitude witnessing/partaking in this healing fest; that is really the true miracle, dinner is just the 'how do you top this' communion experience. Imagine being there during this time and what you would have seen. Imagine recapping these many events hillside in the calm evening air with the taste of fresh fish on the tongue. When Matthew says glorifying the God of Israel, he means glorifying! If anyone is counting back in Jerusalem, every person that is healed by Jesus is one more than any Priest there has been able to do. Wouldn't you count that as a sign? If there was to be a legitimate trial upcoming, do you not think that some of these three day thousands would be more than willing to take the stand? The faith of our Lord is in the testimonies of individual people; multitudes of individual people. Remember, He is not telling us of His successes, transformed people like you and me are. There are more details given in these accounts than Matthew could ever take note of himself, these are surely his collection of other's testimonies.
March6 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:16:1-4 YE DISCERN THE FACE OF THE SKY - Is there any difference between Satan tempting Christ at the temple peak and the Pharisees/Sadducees here on ground zero? In their minds these men are simply demanding an indisputable sign, something in/from the heavens that would prove once and for all that Jesus is/isn't the Son of God. Where in their scriptures was it ever said that there would be a sign such as this given? Was it not said rather that the sign given would be that He would heal the lame and the sick, proclaim deliverence the captives, be rejected by His own....? Is not the fact that they are asking for a sign a sign in itself? Why would He not just give them/us a certain sign? What about doing so would be tempting God thereby proving that He is not the promised one? Are we certain that such a sign would even be accepted? That such a heavenly declaration would not be an immediate then eternal curse to our rebellious hearts that would go about it's own way regardless? The faith of our Lord is in His installments of faith into man. He believes in the faith we will someday have even though there is no certain and present sign. He believes that with His slow and steady and methodical pressure that the heart will be brought to see their errors of it's direction and will turn eventually to follow His. A sign if it weren't for tempting God would only scare the heart further away; destroy the process that He is using to build faith and trust and desire within us with. Besides, there are great and wondrous signs big and little all around us, if with discerning eye we were to see. Faith comes through the knowledge of the righteousness of God and of our Lord Jesus Christ kjv@2Peter:1:1
March7 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:16:5-12 TAKE HEED AND BEWARE - The Disciples have forgotten to bring bread (perhaps not even five loafs) and must think that the Pharisees are going to attempt to emulate the wonder with their own bread. In their minds I think that they feel that they've let Him down. That is an issue with their faith, Jesus is able to make bread from rocks if He has to. Instead the warning was to take heed (observe/examine) and beware (be alert to/take precaution against what has been discovered) of their false doctrines. Even a little bit of their doctrine ferments and puffs up the entire loaf. Leaven is essentially the left over or reserve from a previous batch of dough. Jesus at a latter point compares bread to His own body which is given for our sins; this is His doctrine, a new dough entirely. Anything other than this above or beyond (say legalism) produces a comparative diminishment of His doctrine and a swelling of man's. Amazing how the use of one word can describe the entirety of the doctrine held by others to such a tee. Little faith is that God does not have everything well in hand and is capable of doing whatever is most needed despite our effort or lack, corrupt faith is that salvation is anything less or more than the incarnation and sacrifice of the Son of God Jesus Christ. The faith of our Lord is that we will be able to take heed and beware of such corrupting doctrine once clued into this truth. However, it will be a constant effort and struggle against. A very small amount does change everything about what should be believed. And once altered, who do we get the loaf back to it's true unleavened form?
March8 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:16:13-20 WHOM AM I - The base context throughout is who Jesus is, not Peter, not the Church, everything is His, God is unchanged about not being a respecter of persons. God has revealed who Jesus is first hand to the disciples for whom Peter is often spokesman, they in turn at this point are to tell no man. The label Messiah/Christ unfortunately has a much more corrupted political meaning outside the group than Jesus wishes to draw attention to at this time. They are the very first, there was no one other to tell/reveal it to them, in this respect they are truly blessed. The foundation He has built already in them through revelation knowledge and in person witness/testimony is the Rock that He will continue to build His Church upon. The Rock is who Jesus is. The keys for Peter are the same keys as to any gospel believer/evangelist, abiding in the righteousness and knowledge of God and Son and applying all diligence toward becoming fruitful. With faith in the person of Jesus Christ and obedience to the will of Jesus Christ both heaven and earth mirror each other in the ability to bind and loose for the Kingdom sake. The faith of our Lord in who He is and what the Father is doing through Him towards us. It is the same faith He calls His gathered believers to hold and identify with. It is not to establish an intermediary papal system; it is a direct assembly/submission to Himself and His immediate Lordship alongside other like minded servants. Nothing, not even death, not even a papal version of itself, will prevail against this type of Christ infused church.
March9 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:16:21-28 THINGS THAT BE OF GOD - We are at a turning point in His ministry. Up to now Christ has been working with the disciples in a way allowing the Father to fully reveal Jesus as Christ to His disciples. They began with an intellectual consent enough to follow Him and after all this time and work and experience they are now at the point they know this spiritually in their hearts. Now comes the hardest part to reveal to them where one's entire understanding and framework shifts. Even with Peter's confession of Christ he is accused of savoring the things of man; concocting a storyline that fits his comforts and earthly desire, his vision of how man might accept Jesus. Jesus instead must die for sin, all sins, the sins of all, all the sins that man is uncomfortable in acknowledging. It is a gruesome death ahead that brings forth eternal deliverance. This is the course ahead that is of God. The deliverance from sin, much like Israel's deliverance from Egypt, leaves us in a wilderness/void where new life must begin, develop, rely solely upon and carry out God's will exclussively. All that is left us in this birthing void is to bare the symbol of deliverance, His cross to the fallen world surrounding. As much as we are ambassadors of His death, we are ambassadors of His resurrection and accession, we are foreseers of His glorious return. The faith of our Lord is that as nice and pleasant as it might be not to have to go through with this, the plan from Heaven is correct, it is the only way to secure what has been design for and promised and guaranteed. In our knowing this plan however, we must face the true depth and depravity of our sins as well as the hostile even violent reactions of other sinners against it.
March10 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:17:1-13 ARISE AND BE NOT AFRAID - The Disciples believed, and for at least four of them because of their belief they were granted a sign. Not just a sign but, the momentary presence and voice of God the Father. Why then only four? Why then keep it secret? To release such information would cause quite the stir; a stir amongst the other disciples, a stir amongst the public. A stir in one direction is productive, a stir in another counter productive. Egos are damaged and inflamed, issues get side tracked, importance becomes orphaned. Why then grant the sign? It has as much to do about the connection of Jesus to Moses and Elias and their where abouts in all of this. In their presence He remains the glorious object. Peter sought three tabernacles when the Father stepped in saying 'this is my Son; hear ye Him'. To contrast this glorious moment so abruptly with the road of suffering ahead is vitally important. The faith of our Lord is not just in who He is and what position He should rightfully be seen, it is in what He must do now to bring man along to a vantage point where we can see Him in that light and how much it will cost. It is a light that we are unaccustomed to. A light that makes us to drop to the ground as if dead in fear. But, by a touch of His hand and a whisper in His voice we are brought to stand and listen.
March11 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:17:14-23 OH FAITHLESS AND PERVERSE GENERATION - What is the cause of this issue? The man? The child? The Disciples? The crowd? The generation! How long will they provoke? How long will He suffer them? We see the broad range of Jesus' task. It is not just the faith of any one person, it is the pool of sin from which we are all taken. We know nothing other than this. For this brief time each of us will experience what the other side of the spiritual universe is like. Why did this possession come about? Why did it go on for so long? Why when the disciples had the anointing did the anointing not work? Faith? Where do we get our faith? How do we come to believe such a powerful gift? Is it faith in the power or faith in the person that holds the power? Faith in the person for whom the disciple is an ambassador? The faith of our Lord is in light of everything that this generation represents and all the struggles that even the true followers will have even within their own faith that it all in the end works out right. That He will have to suffer this generation but a while longer.
March12 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:17:24-27 - Jesus has taken for Himself an oath of poverty; anything He must put forward must be provided to Him by the Father. While He technically would not be required of the Father to pay the Temple Tax (because He actually is the Temple), He pays the tax just the same in order not to add fuel to the priest's fire. The faith of our Lord is shown in this oath of complete poverty. The utter reliance on the provisions of the Father, how and when to call for them, the knowledge as to where these provisions maybe found, all go into His definition of faith. He legally has the position of authority not to have to be required certain customary things, to rather demand such observances/taxes be paid Him, however, the course forward at this time is best served by putting what is due Him aside. Though late in the eyes of the human temple, He pays out of His sworn poverty for Himself and His disciple.
March13 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:18:1-9 CONVERT AND BECOME AS - Follow the question from beginning to end; it remains 'who is the greatest'. The child is the symbol of a true believer, converted and becoming, the offender one who thinks himself greater or greatest, that he holds special rank or position there. The hands, feet and eyes aren't the cause of thinking oneself greater they are merely the means of action. The action is an attempt to trap or entice others to their point of view. Such offenses are sure to come, they were occurring even amongst His own disciples, but, woe to those by whom the offence comes. Think of what actions you might come up against that are intended to entice you into attempting to raise your position better or best in the kingdom as well, most are legalistic. When Paul addresses similar humility it is as opposed to the offences of legalism as well. Hands feet and eyes then are trying to impose legalism in many of these cases. How does best or greatest have any regard to a child who only yearns for the sense of family and belonging and safety? What type of kingdom is it where legalists only seek to out do each other and make others to behave the same? Who is the greatest is a selfish question with a unpleasant trap door. The faith of our Lord is in a kingdom comprised of family, of belonging, of inclusion, of joyful community experience. Unless one converts their way of thinking and becomes like a kingdom child in thought and action one very likely will not fit into the type of kingdom Jesus has awaiting, many may not be allowed or even permit themselves enterance therein. Like a child we have much to learn, much to be part of, and much joy to experience from our loving Father.
March14 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:18:10-14 THE WILL OF YOUR FATHER - Parable part one warns against offending the child of faith. Parable part two warns against despising the child of faith whom the Son of Man goes after when he has gone astray. Offended and offender, despised and despiser, who is who? The principal can be applied in several ways. For now, let's ask the question this way: Who are typically considered the lost sheep over and over in the scriptures? How often has the larger body of believers rather despised these lost sheep and the Lord's attention to them thus becoming their greater offenders? Did Jesus not know that in the future this historically defining opposition would be so? The faith of our Lord is that it is the Father's expressed will that not one of these should perish; He has come (been sent) to save that which was lost; gentile believers are not being lost they are being grafted in. The angels over Israel rejoice exceedingly along with their Shepherd when another Jewish soul is redeemed. Whomsoever that despises them despises God's Will and shall be an offender of all.
March15 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:18:15-20 THERE I AM IN THE MIDST - Within the flock there are things that can separate and drive members away. We have seen enticement/offense and then despising those gone astray and the effort made to regain them. Now we see internal trespass between two and the response to that trespass. Before either give the other up for lost there is a progression expected to include more and more witnesses to establish/settle the case. Plenty of opportunity is given for the one or both to work matters out civilly. Binding here is in the sense of legal agreement. If the two shall come to a mutually agreeable arrangement, Heaven and the Father will stand behind that; as agreement within the flock is most desired from above. It should be fairly natural for the two parties to desire/achieve this if both parties are sincere about moving forward in the name of their Lord. The picture of the flock very much describes the faith of our Lord. It is His flock, He is it's shepherd. The inner workings and resulting culture within the flock are therefore most important as it has the ability to keep souls away and drive souls out; and as this reflects directly upon His leadership. If we are truly gathered as a flock in His name then agreement amongst us, binding agreement, should be every man's pursuit and petition. If the offender or offended cannot abide by this then certainly He/they should be loosed from the flock at least until they fully repent from the hardness of their hearts. The offended party should then not despise the efforts of Christ and Christ's body to win the lost soul back else they become an offender as well.
March16 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:18:21-35 BECAUSE THOU DESIREDST ME - You can imagine a man going through this life void of the sense of debt to his creator, doing as he pleased, taking what he pleased, conducting himself amongst the rest of creation just as he pleased. If anything is owed by anybody, it is owed to him for having made him work so hard to get where he is at; right?. Imagine then his surprise when his creator calls in the man's debts to Himself. How small is his grasp of the reality things when he thinks that somehow he can repay it on his own? Though the debt is forgiven him this man then continues on thinking that whatever is owed God from here on out will be extracted from what others owe to him; he won't be caught in the embarrassment of having to beg for mercy again. How small is his grasp of the reality of things again when he thinks that the small hundred pence owed him by others is anything near the amount of any future debt incurred to his creator? Instead he is incurring all the more debt. The two debts are completely dissimilar but, the principal being taught is the same; true compassion. Many today seek God to be unconditional without placing the same expectation upon themselves. Isn't that convenient? The Lord instead places one condition on compassion, it is implied by His forgiveness to you, that along the way from here on out that you proceed with the same compassion to all others that He has shown to you. That in itself is impossible to do unless we daily leave ourselves behind at the foot of His cross and pick up with His eternal burden. The faith of our Lord is that He will suffer many a horrible things in the weeks and months to come. He will suffer from the hands of those that He has most compassion for; He is the Father's direct offer of compassion. He see's this time as proving of His oath and understanding of the compassion of His Father. Not unconditional by our odd standards but, so much more effective towards the eternal.
March17 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:19:1-12 LET NO MAN - The answer seems fairly simple, Let no man. There are three test given to this, one from the Pharisees trying to catch Him in a 'no right answer' dilemma, one from the Disciples thinking if it is really that tough then it would be better not to marry, one from their use of Moses making allowance for the hardness of men's heart. What is it that is so difficult about about marriage in the first place? Men's hearts. Why is it so difficult? The heart can not and will not be legislated against, it will always find reason and logical provision out. If it doesn't find a way out it will just make up a different legislation or none at all. Jesus is not trapped by either three, His statement stands above them all: What God has joined. The heart will find infidelity to be found whether married or eunuch or single. One cannot say that one form is better than the other unless one has received such personal direction from God and then it becomes a matter of personal fidelity to God. Where the Lord's answer is simple 'let no man' man's answer revealing 'but, but, but'. The faith of our Lord is in what God has joined together and to that be faithful. Man's faith is in everything else he can come up with not to remain faithful.
March18 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:19:13-15 FORBID THEM NOT - People have their own ideas of what needs be. Sometimes you are thinking of giving the man space, holding the crowds back, keeping the madness under some type of control. Other times you are thinking of the predictable course ahead for a messiah, the steps that should be taken by Him. Who knows what the others are thinking, but, it could easily become a mob. As a Disciple you have His best interest at heart but, in anyway your thoughts come off to either Him or others as rebuke. People from all directions including our own selves are demanding of Him to do all sorts of things as they see fit. To the minds eye it all appears as chaos. It all doesn't seem to phase the Lord however. It takes the focus of the Lord to remind us of what is most important and that includes the children. Who would have ever thought in the midst of such an adult spectacle to bring the children up to Christ for His blessings? They should be commended. It is not just about us after all, our salvation and blessings and teachings, it is about the youngest of the kingdom and theirs. This is an embarrassing moment for the Disciples, but, a teachable moment none the less. The faith of our Lord is that they will remember this one in the times to come, to mark this one down and bring it up over and over especially when it all gets too hectic. Do not get so focused as to miss what things the Lord would have focus on. Do not forbid the children from having their time and experience with Him as well.
March19 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:19:16-30 WITH GOD ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE - For the rich man it is his many possessions. For the criminal it is his pride. For the poor man his covetousness. For each of us there is something too hard to let go of in order to pass through the eye of the needle. It can be done, the Disciples are proof (at least 11 of them), but, even that was not by their own power; it was by God's. The rich young man approached kingdom entry by what further he needed to do. If judged by that criteria we would all be hopeless because there is always something more that we are unwilling to do, always something more that we are unwilling to give up, even more that the Law requires. However, if entry is based upon what God has done for us in Christ then there is the possibility. From that point what we are willing to have Him do through us becomes liberating. When there is nothing that we can do of our own, nothing of ours that can be given away as payment we are in a much better position of receiving His grace and therefore entry into His kingdom. These things we may be asked to leave behind after we have received His grace, but, not beforehand so as to buy into His grace. We find the faith of our Lord today displaying the perfection of the Father's grace instead of the pursuit of perfection somewhere other in man. Jesus is the evidence of the Father's grace, He Himself is in submission wholly to the goodness of that grace. This is about the Father's goodness and what the Father is able to do.
March20 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:20:1-16 WHATSOEVER IS RIGHT - What is fair and just to us is largely a matter of perception. It shouldn't be that way but, it of course is. At the end of the day the first laborers hired think the master harsh and the last think that he is the greatest. The first had agreed to a penny, it was a very good day's wage. What upset them was that those that followed got the very same wage for half or quarter the work. What difference would it make if they made a very good day's wage? A wage they agreed to from hour one till the time wages were issued? The master said that he would pay each person whatever was right and he did. He was more than generous to all with his money and helped a great many unemployed people. Would you be upset that a man receiving Christ on his death bed was rewarded the same as you who had served the Lord all your life? Would you not be happy that the man was not left cold and dark and hungry? Let's take it a step further, would you be angered if a nominal believer received a certain blessing but not you? Is the blessing not His as well as the many long range reasons? Is not the kingdom His, first last and last first or what ever? The faith of our Lord is in whatsoever is right as a kingdom just as much as it is what is right for the individual. His warning is that we, being short sighted, may not see it that way. Many will be offended even though there is no cause because of their personal perception of fairness.
March21 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:20:17 BETRAYED - We have known that Jesus was going to die for our sins and we have known that it had to be this way. Now we know how it is going to come about; betrayal. The opposition has had their mind set for some time now. They have had plenty opportunity, Jesus had always been able to get away. The most painful sin of it all is that He would be turned over to His people Israel for condemnation unto death by the hands of one of His own. Many have been crucified, most all scourged, even some innocent. What is more unique is the utter excess of these tortures used upon Him because of who claimed to be. What is more unique is by whom this was commissioned. In one sense this is done entirely by the sin in all men. In another sense it is done entirely by what was required by God to loosen man free from the nature of sins bondage. What is most unique in human history is determined by this standard - that it is the Son of God receiving this death sentence. The faith our Lord does not flinch from what lies ahead for Him; thankfully!
March22 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:20:20-28 EVEN AS THE SON OF MAN - Christ has dramatically humbled Himself in ways that we barely comprehend from His previous state to the point where not even who sit at His future right and left hand are not in His power. He has given it all to the Father that He might minister to man and give His life for many. Few could ever say that they ministered unto Him but, that He ministered unto them. His answer settles a lot of question and dispute on both sides. As His Father ministered through Him to man, He is to continue ministering through us to man. The focus for us is to be as Him, humble to the point where it is Him working through us. Humble is not determined by standing or position or even how many possessions and effort that you and your family have volunteered into the ministry; it is an attitude and viewpoint that is pervasive through out your being. The faith of our Lord is in His Father. He submits Himself to whatever the Father wills to be, knowing that whatever is willed to be is throughly righteous because the Father is righteous. His cup is filled with the Father's will if even to death.
March23 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:20:29 WHAT WILL YE - The mechanics of a crowd are always interesting. What makes a crowd behave as it does? In this case the expressed will of the multitude was for the two to hold their peace. The two are blind, this is their opportunity to regain their sight, yet the majority see them as a disturbance. The crowd may have been made up of those sympathetic to Jesus as they were following Him out of Jericho. Their intents may have been for Jesus' good and out of respect. The requests upon Jesus may have been so frequent that they had become common and distracting and keeping them from reaching their next destination. Jesus saw the event differently; not as the crowd obviously and perhaps not even as the two petitioners, but, as the Father did. We have seen so frequently that Jesus did not do things to garner more press; He forbid receivers to publicly tell. The faith of our Lord is focused much more on the present moment and the needs of the people around. The two men need their sight, the crowd needs to look beyond themselves. The impression of the truly needy should not be "oh he was too much in a hurry" or "yea she had to get somewhere" or even "should I disturb them". It should be "He was there when I needed/called" and "the first person I ever saw was the one who ever really saw through to me".
March24 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:21:1-11 HOSANNA - kjv@Psalms:118:26 is where 'blessed is he' comes from. Hosanna is better defined as both kjv@Psalms:118:25 'save us now I beseech thee' and kjv@Psalms:118:26 'blessed is he' combined. In turn we must recall kjv@Psalms:118:27 as well 'bind the sacrifice' 'unto the horns of the alter'. If Jesus is aware of the quote that the crowd is chanting (we must assume that He does) then He would know the context of how He is to bless/save them and why it is that He has come; He is the sacrifice. kjv@Zechariah:9:9 is where the 'thy King cometh' comes from which has it's meaning continued in kjv@Zechariah:9:10 'shall speak peace to the gentiles' and 'dominion...to the ends of the earth'. While this is the time for riding the ass and colt in, this is not the time for the ends of the earth. Why not? He is to be bound to the alter first. The palm branches I believe are from the Feast of the Tabernacles, a harvest time remembrance of the Lord leading the captives out of Egypt. The symbolism is to deliverance from sin. This day's events are rich with meaning, but, He is the only one that really knows really what that meaning truly is. The faith of or Lord stands alone. Even the closest to Him know little of what He sees even at jubilant times such as these.
March25 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:21:12-17 HOUSE OF PRAYER - Though not recorded by Matthew, John depicts this event as the second time in but a few years that Jesus has done this temple cleaning. The problem continues. Currency exchanges and selling doves (the poor man's sacrifice) were not wrong per se, they were actually needed especially this time of year due to volume. We believe that either the profit margins or inconstant arbitrary rates or the location (Court of Gentiles) or all were amiss. The temple priest surely were by now aware if not complicit in the unfair trade. A house of prayer is made a den of thieves and many more than just the vendors were involved thus giving the Temple a bad public reputation. The issue more than anything is how quickly these weed like practices reseed and take root and flourish. It leaves us to wander if in the Lords eye it is not seen the same today. How much of what we know as our "Temple" experience isn't clouded by greed and profiteering and unscrupulous religious industry? The faith of our Lord is in the access for all men to a common place of worship. A place for congregation. A place of prayer and healing. A place for the perfected praise of devoted adherents young and old alike. A place undefiled for sinners and weary souls alike to return to their most holy God. He knows that without Him it just doesn't happen on it's own; in fact He is likely to displease those to whom He has given charge.
March26 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:21:18-22 IT SHALL BE DONE - His faith or the faith encouraged of these disciples is acting upon the fig tree. He hungers for fruit from a type of tree where there should be an over abundance. What then does this fig tree symbolize? In past parables trees, vines, wheat shafts that bare fruit have been used to illustrate faith; how it is rooted; what it is rooted along with; good tree good fruit; 30-60-100 fold; etc... Fruit has been the outgrowth of faith. We have seen good fruit and we have seen bad fruit. Now we are shown no fruit. Once support is removed from the fruitless fig tree it withers amazingly quick. The passage nearly suggests that those/some with fruitful faith have the power/responsibility to remove earthly support/continuance from the trees of those whose with fruitless faith, but at the same time they have a similar ability to move the unsurmountable obstacles to faith at the same time. Can both be asked for at the same time? That fruitless faith be ended and the voluminous task of fruitful faith begin? Too often we detach the first part of the teaching from the 'whatsoever ye shall ask'. Why then did Jesus not ask that the tree be made fruitful forever? Because only faith that abides in Him can be made to produce fruit, it is fruit that He Himself causes. The fruitless tree does not abide in Him and therefore cannot be made to bare His fruit unless made to abide in Him. Two trees perhaps within the same person and a mountain of difference between them. The faith of our Lord is shown here to hunger for one thing - fruit; good fruit, the type that the planter intended.
March27 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:21:23-27 IN LIKE WISE - He says you can answer your own question with one word, the answer to my question will be the answer to yours. John the Baptist was filled with the Holy Spirit from birth. He waxed strong in the Spirit waiting in the desert for God's word to come. Once word was received he then preached a consistent message the repentance for the remission of sins telling the Pharisees specifically to bring fruit worthy of repentance. He preached in the spirit/words from Elijah preparing the way of the Lord. A great many were prepared by him to hear the words of the one to follow, not the elders and chief priests however, their road was paved to be hewn down like a fruitless tree, there was shown no fruits of repentance. It was a worse sin in their book for Jesus not to comply under their authority than not comply with God's. Whose authority? Well it certainly was not theirs. John had called them vipers to whom wrath was to come, urged individuals of them to flee. Where are these men now today? Where is their authority gone? It is gone. Why indeed did they not believe John then? What was there to fear from the people if they themselves were correct? The faith of our Lord is in the authority of God as proven out by the Holy Spirit. Things have been done, steps made and proven out for millennium by the Spirit to prepare these next few days, things that Jesus if a man could not have possibly prepared for himself. All the pieces now will fall together, mind you not accidentally but, quite masterfully. Had they really been concerned about proper authority they would have traced all the steps.
March28 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:21:28 INTO THE KINGDOM BEFORE YOU - Let me try my hand at stringing the past few sections together. They are tied by the authority of the Father, the ability/responsibility of the believer who is convinced of that authority, and the message to the church and then the world for repentance as preached by John; the way of righteousness. They also have the common thread of producing fruit for a divine purpose. Let us suppose that the fig tree is the calcified/unrepentant church; John/Elijah said that Messiah would hew it down, Jesus says that if one does not doubt the Father's authority that they will have this power too. Then there is the call to go out into the vineyard and work. Here He illustrates that if you say you're going to obey the authority of the Father and don't go work the vineyard the kingdom is not yet yours. Repentance from this disobedience separates those who will receive it and those who will not. If the fig tree speaks of unrepentant/disobedient religion as a whole then it is just as likely that He is speaking of the repentant/obedient Church of the Disciples as a whole as well; this would explain the two sons, Jew and Christian (both His). This is not to say that individual members of these bodies cannot become encumbered by these tendencies also. The faith of our Lord is in this "way of righteousness". It begins with the righteousness and authority of the Father, works it's way outward through the prophets of old and the law which Jesus fulfills, continues as a call to the world at large to repentance and then obedience back to the authority of the Father thus producing the fruit in us of an overall righteousness. It is collective just as much as it is individual. The way of righteousness is righteous in every way.
March29 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:21:33-46 MARVELOUS IN OUR EYES - Why did the Lord choose the Jews in the first place? To be husbandmen over His vineyard. What happened to the fruit of it? It was withheld, kept by them for their own purposes. Did the master not try to get the fruits back? He did, they would have nothing of it. So where are we at now? The master has sent His Son and they are days from killing Him. Why would they do that? Because they know that He is the rightful heir of the vineyard and they want it for themselves. Wait a minute...they know? Yes they know and thereby reject. We are not told how many know, but, it is enough to make useful minions of the rest. It is also suggested that this take over has been the plan since the vineyard was given over (WOW!). How could they not know with all of the prophecy being fulfilled before their eyes; do they not know their own treasured prophecies? Sure they appear to have their intellectual arguments but, in the end what it all comes down to is that they want what is His for themselves. So they perceived that He was talking about them, but, did they repent having been called out? No they sought to lay hands on Him. This changes our perspective of the faith of our Lord knowing how He sees them, knowing that He knows what they have done to those before Him, knowing that this vineyard is the Fathers and He is going to get it back. How He gets it back is what is a surprise to everyone but the Father. There is a twist in here however, the multitude still only see Him as a prophet.
March30 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:22:1-14 MANY ARE CALLED - Of those called, there are those who refuse, there are those who make light of (some of which who strike back at the messengers), those that accept, those who come but are irreverent or ill prepared. The first thing to clarify is that we are not talking about the bride or any portion thereof rejecting Christ, these are strictly guests talked about here. The wedding is going to happen regardless and will be well attended by a most appreciative crowd kjv@Revelation:19:7-9. We are told even of bride's maids not having enough oil for the wait in their lamps having the door shut on them kjv@Matthew:25:1-10. If these people are outside of the bride then we must consider who the bride is. Some would say the Gentile Church; who then are the guests from the highways? Some would say the Raptured Church; where then would Tribulation Israel fit in? Some would say Israel and with Old Testament reasoning; but, she would have to be dressed in the righteousness of the saints kjv@Jeremiah:3:14. Israel would give cause for many of the invited to reject the invitation or run out of oil in the wait. Truth is that we may not know exactly who/what (as in institution) the bride consists, but, we know of the bridegroom. If we are merely guests it is best for us to be dressed as a reverent guest and not ourselves as a bride or a party crasher. If it is the institution instead that we are to witness then we best be reverent to the institution as well so as not the upset the groom. The faith of our Lord is in the marriage made by the Father. He has given Himself wholly and unreservedly for Her. If we see Her as tarnished or unacceptable it is very likely that we know nothing of who she is or have mis-identified Her altogether.
March31 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:22:15-22 WHY TEMPT YE ME - Even today men seek to catch Him in a lie or contradiction, to entangle/corner Him in His talk. They present their question with flowery praise, the good lord, good prophet, good teacher, but, it is all done to disprove Him to believers or potential believers. They counsel together on the internet, in the class rooms, in the courts and temples. They come in both religious and political varieties. Strange/unlikely bed fellows intermix to come against Him. How do we know/spot them? By just that At the core they are hypocrites You will notice that the argument is over a penny, small change when it comes to the loftier things of God. With Simon kjv@Matthew:17:25-27 Jesus had made it a point that during an captivity/occupation tribute is extracted heavily from the occupied in order to lessen the burden on the true citizen. The Jews had whistled their self sovereignty away by rejecting the Lord and were now being taxed for it by their conquerers. The coin is Caesars just as they are. kjv@Luke:23:2 Jesus is accused of exactly the opposite of what He has said at least twice now. They are utter hypocrites. They puff Him up to tear Him down, they intellectually place Him in positions that they think impossible to defend when He is not in that position to begin with, they bring questions that are of little consequence to the overall debate. Render to God what is God's? They cannot, it is no longer their's to render. The faith of our Lord is in knowing that we will be met by such people. Though we give these people too much importance given their track record, though we might think they are finally coming around to see things as we do, they are constantly there and the same regardless. He believes that the truth will be proven out, the truth about Him, the truth about them.
April1 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:22:23-33 YE DO ERR - The Sadducees dict:easton Sadducee were largely defined by their non belief in the resurrection. They attempt the same brain twister on Jesus that stupefied so many a Pharisee. Unless one knows scripture dict:naves Resurrection which points to life after death and considers God's power kjv@Jeremiah:32:17kjv@Philippians:3:21 one is left to fall into this conundrum of false logic. As to there being no marriage in the resurrection, I believe this is a new revelation or a composite of a larger base of scriptural doctrines. The Sadducee's case seems to involve more human logic than any particular scriptural knowledge, apparently they had not thought through the logic enough to have foreseen the logical resurrection confirming answer Jesus could use to easily escape their supposed trap with. We must be careful ourselves when scripture suggests something and our logic is spent exclusively attempting to disprove it; even more so when we cherry pick single scriptures to say what they do not. The Sadducee's are gone as a power by the time of the destruction of the Temple AD70, suggesting a change of public sentiment regarding resurrection and proof of Messiah hewing down the fruitless trees of that time. The faith of our Lord is rooted deeply in scripture and the sovereign omnipotence of God. It is also in the purpose to which He created man initially for. He is and will forever be the God of the living.
April2 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:22:34-40 THE LAW AND THE PROPHETS - When Jesus said that He came to fulfill the law and the prophets kjv@Matthew:5:17 now basically He is saying that He came to love. Likewise we should love, but, without believing on Him first we find that we are unable to love to this extent. For most people love is this large nebulous puffy cloud of whatever they want it to be. How do you love God with all heart/soul/mind when you know nothing about Him, when He is merely whatever you want Him to be? Likewise, how do you love yourself and thus your neighbor without knowing the type of love God has for you? God's love very well could be shown in His law convincing us of our sin and the need for change, our inability to that of ourselves. God's love could be shown in the prophets pointing us to the single person from which that change is possible. God's love could be shown in that while we were yet sinners He sent His Son to become the propitiation for our sins. How does one love to the full extent without such blessed knowledge? Does and mom and dad truly love their dear newborn child without first knowing the actual love of God? Can a child be raised in true love having any doubt or reservation or false pretense about God's hand and doing? If not a child then how so a neighbor? And the prophets, had they not constantly told us where God was going with this, would we not have known who Jesus would be, what He would do, and where to look for Him? So a question is asked to tempt Him, a question that they probably know the same answer, love. Two opposite directions occur at the point of believing on Jesus, man's and God's. The faith of our Lord is that these two commandments properly seen and practiced will revolutionize the lives of it's adherents. His love which is the Fathers love will shine through to our love, our true love will be made to sprout. Our love separated from His love is darkness. His love separate from Jesus is imaginary.
April3 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:22:41-46 WHAT THINK YE - Theology can fork at very interesting points leading believers in differing directions. Take the phrase "Son of David". If the Christ is only the descendant of David then he is not God incarnate; a whole world of different doctrines develop. Christ becomes just a really good really strong Jewish leader. If Christ is God in the flesh, flesh borrowed from the line of David and has to suffer and die in the flesh to redeem fallen mankind, the direction of doctrine is forced much different way. The distinction is crucial. "The Lord said unto my Lord" is the theological fork between Christianity and Judaism. From it way have two thirds of the Trinity, Incarnation, Redemption, Atonement etc... From it we also derive the [second coming] of Christ in order to fulfill the remainder of "leadership" prophecy. Christ however is not to be leader of just the Jews. He is not to be king of the same old untransformed sinners. It is not everything would be alright if we had a really good leader. Mankind has to be changed from the deepest core and once brought out of it's utter depravity lead to entirely new unfamiliar un thought of holly ground. No one there on this day was going to understand that. Symbolically after days of intense interrogation the inspection of the passover lamb was over. The faith of our Lord was that though no one yet understood it, what being Christ meant, they soon would. Until His resurrection everyone would continue to see Him as a Son of David and not the Son of David being God incarnate. The distinction is just as important for us today.
April4 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:23:1-39 MOSES SEAT - There is a place of honor and respect given by Jesus to Moses and the seat that remains that is to be carried on by His disciples. The life of a follower is a completely different mindset however because it is focused on Christ. Righteousness now is inputed because of His sacrifice and a new life is enabled because of His resurrection. This is what the Law had been pointing us to. Without the righteousness of Christ none of this is remotely possible. The woes described of the Scribes and Pharisees are more properly woes to any man who pursues righteousness minus Christ regardless of affiliation. In a sense these men are the most zealous and ardent of all religious men, but, this is the closest men's efforts can come to the target. Take the commandment to love the Lord your God. If Christ Jesus is God's offer of righteousness and such offer is pushed aside, how can it be said God is loved? Having justified not loving God in His entirety, what else then can be justified? Are not all the commandments broken at that point? The seat still holds authority (even if held by others) especially as schoolmaster over to those who have not received Christ, but, also to those who have. Do as they bid but, not as they do. It is almost a challenge to show them how in Christ things must be done. Remember that if God did not want them in the seat, they would not be in the seat. Today, these particular affiliations are not in power, but, others just as hypocritical often are. There is a means and a purpose in the life of the believer for this. Given all of these woes and faults the Lord's command has never been to pack up and start up anew. The faith of our Lord is firm, we must follow His lead. We don't have to know why it is this way only that He see's it as such. We are challenged considerably, we grow. We do as He see's fit in the midst of such darkness, He is honored. A rebel? no. A revolutionary? Yes!
April5 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:24:1-35 AS LIGHTNING OUT OF THE EAST - It will be easy to deceive a great many but, perhaps not the elect. I think we have the impression that in the end days people just don't believe in God, that intellectualism will have out grown the need for God. The end Jesus teaches is of people flocking to false Christs. We live in an age now of relativism, a necessary precursor to an day of multitudes desperately gasping for any breath or hint of messianic slight. In a sense He is prophesying the end of intellectual relativism. Given that the gospel will have reached the ends of the earth (may have already have) this is a sign of just how much the people of Earth do not want to accept Jesus and will violently oppose Him, His approaching kingdom and His devoted followers. The injection of truth into the world causes it to fester and boil as if to expel it, but, somewhere in this process God's plan is fulfilled by producing vaccinated sin immune children from Earth to inhabit eternity. As the heat and pressure are turned up to final boil many false messiahs will bubble up leading to one ultimate false Christ; a world nearly of one religion. I suppose that there will be a sense of relief, even victory. Then, however, there will be an undeniable lightning from the east. The faith of our Lord is utterly remarkable. In so few words, how could such detailed insight into human nature and God's plan be revealed? Though we have a confirming picture of this event (disturbing in how quickly it can come about) in 70 AD it is clear that 70 AD is not this event. There will be no dispute remaining when this prophecy comes about.
April6 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:24:36-51 FAITHFUL AND WISE SERVANT - Two sets of eyes see the same passage differently. Some see it as an intellectual challenge to piece together all the prophetic clues and come up with a theory as to when. Other eyes see it as call to be doing the Lords work all the more for the time is not known but sudden when He will look in on His accounts. Responsibilities have been entrusted to us to immediately and diligently service. It is likely that many given these responsibilities will be found not doing so when the Lord returns because of the allowances they give themselves in the Lord's delay. The emphasis is not on knowing "when", but, it is on "what" "to what extent" we are fulfilling ordained obligations until it does happen. The servant is described as the good man of the house on watch and the ruler of the household giving meat. The faith of our Lord is in the urgent doing here and now in light of how sudden future event will happen. It is in the responsibility at hand, not so much in the exact time-frame.
April7 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:25:1-13 OIL/LAMPS - I guess that I have always figured that the oil was faith; half did not have enough faith to last the wait. How then could they ask the wise maids to share fuel for their lamps? In light of the previous passage the oil more likely is the doing of the Lord's work. the fulfilling of responsibility and obligation. How then could the wise share their fulfillment with those that have carelessly disregarded such? The lamp is then faith, a container filled or emptied of oil. The Lord's work is never done, it never runs out. The only reason a lamp would not have oil is because the lamp doe not contain the sense of urgent calling and diligent obligation. Oil has also often been associated with anointment, which fits in well with this analogy. How does one run out of God's anointing unless he does not hold himself to do what he has been anointed to do? Watch therefore. Watch for His coming? Watch yourself for what you are doing in light of His coming? Anointing carries the obligation to perform. The faith of our Lord has performed and is performing it's obligations. Many of those obligations he has now delegated to us so as to test and build us up. Many will be thankful of His performance and will be awaiting His marriage so as to attend, not everyone one waiting will be able to perform their duties then because of their failure now to be ready.
April8 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:25:14-30 DELIVERED UNTO THEM HIS GOODS - The picture is of the servants responsibility with the Lord's goods after He leaves. A considerable amount is given to even the least according to his particular ability. Paul explains it as "grace given" kjv@Romans:12:6 "the manifestation of Spirit given to each man to profit withal" kjv@1Corinthians:12:7 "stewards of mysteries" kjv@1Corinthians:4:1-2. Peter says "minister the same one to another as stewards of manifold grace of God" kjv@1Peter:4:10. The fact is that He has given us His goods, spiritual gifts/ability and opportunity, this with any type of investment compounds with interest. It is not usury per se, not at the expense or misuse of anybody, it is natural and beneficial growth of the Kingdom. Withal implies the common good of all as does one to another. By the one man burying the grace given and not making diligent profitable use of it, he is accusing his Lord of reaping where He has not sown, profiting on the back on others, hardness in the ways of business. He is also burying it away from the profit of the collective. His own ability has been ceased by his mis-understanding of the Lords intentions/rights and by implication his association to the larger group. What he has been given is then to be taken away and given to those whose faithfulness has been proven. The faith of our Lord is in increase. He has given His grace; the Holy Spirit and it's manifestations, spiritual gifts to be ministered one to another for to profit withal and for all. What good is such an uncommon privilege if not faithfully executed as a good steward.
April9 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:25:31-46 UNTO THE LEAST OF THESE MY BRETHREN - Back up to the previous goods given the stewards to invest. Forward to the judgement of the tribes. Righteousness appears not only along the lines of individuals it appears also along lines of the human tribes. The implications are intriguing. The least of these my brethren appear in all cultures; they are the peoples Jesus identifies Himself most with. How these nations respond to the needs of these least brethren is the identifying factor that separates the nations on the right from the left. As stewards of the goods the Lord has given all tribes and nations, they are to faithfully invest such to the care of the least. It is interesting that tendencies could run so deep as to effect the judgement upon entire cultures. Men as individuals it seems can be heavily influenced by the attitude of the collective as it concerns the goods of the Lord being invested into the needs of the least. The Lord is seen either as a harsh man reaping where He has not sown or else a Lord of grace owed reinvestment toward those He would identify Himself so closely to. The faith of our Lord differs so greatly from the faith of most. What the righteous soul lacks most ahead of eternity is the judgement and clearing away of the unrighteous as a whole, nation and individual. Our's is not to presume this judgement on our own but, to be deeply conscious of it's universal need and to faithfully execute in it's stead the aid and investment required up to that. Some would ask where is the love of God? This is the love as given to us! We can draw men out from this impending judgement of nations by serving as would our Lord the needs physical/spiritual of their least.
April10 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:26:1-5 AFTER TWO DAYS - That is it. Not any longer. Not even the chief priests and scribes are in charge of what will happen. The elders will have their part, God will use their conscious decision, but, it will come about on His timeline. Note that they think that they will have to be crafty and subtle; the consult wasn't as to whether but, as to how. The faith of our Lord is perhaps best observed at this point by kjv@Isaiah:53 which He would have been well aware of. kjv@Isaiah:53:10-11 particularly give us the sense that it is God is doing the bruising and putting Him to grief making His soul an offering for our sins. The Father will see the travail of His soul and be satisfied.
April11 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:26:6 A GOOD WORK UPON ME - Now that we are this far into the storyline and sense just how many people are daily around Jesus, let's count the number of good works done unto Him. Let's count now that one is done how many others see it as a good work. The next good work? Joseph of Arimathea and our Lord's secret acquaintance Nicodemus. Both of these good works have to do with His burial. How often today do we get caught up in what the Lord is going to do for me? How the Lord needs to go about doing my business? What the end result should look like? How I want His praise and blessing? This woman gets it. If but for a moment she is on a wave link few travel. It is not all about what we want/need things to be, it is not all about what is going on in our lives but in His. Where this woman got this perfumed oil and what she was hoping to one day do with it we just don't know. We are glad however that she decided to do what she did if even to remind us of the place we ourselves need to be in regards to our Lord. The faith of our Lord endures hardness even from His closest softest companions. These are all teachable moments. Hearts need to be taught to be softened all the more to their surroundings and to their core, locked into the present moment of the One and of others outside of themselves.
April12 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:26:14-16 BETRAYAL PART 1 - The betrayal of Jesus by Judas came in two stages, this stage is the arrangement, the next the actual act of leading them to His whereabouts. He has opportunity still at anytime to talk himself out of this and yet does not. In fact he goes back and congregates with the others and partakes at the Lord's table. Wouldn't you like to crawl into his head for a moment to know why he has gone as far as this first stage? Many have pondered and there are all sorts of varying theory's. In some respect it is amazing that of the primary twelve over this amount of time and under this amount of pressure and scrutiny eleven now remain intact, testament to Jesus' ability as a shepherd. I think it quite natural to have many tire out, move aside, resign to the rigors of the road. Perhaps not to the level of betrayal, but at least to a level of wanting to do something else. Given all the pitfalls and enticements and ravaging wolves along the way His achievement is substantial. Where, we must ask as well, in our own walk have we also turned aside if only in small measure betraying the Lord's faith and trust or image. In the next hours Judas will be watching on with particular interest of seeing his opportunity; surely a gut wrenching yet intoxicating en-devour. There will even be awkward moments where Jesus identifies him to the others without pointing directly at him. The faith of our Lord continues even knowing what is going on behind His back. Betrayal is but one of the many painful steps up toward the cross ahead. The road itself He sees even as from the Father. The same thorny road for Him may not end even as of today.
April13 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:26:17-30 THOU HAST SAID - The Lords supper is a monumental event for the disciples to look back on the remainder of their lives. You think back on all that they have seen and all the stories that they would have to talk about, what would be their most cherished moment of all? This would probably rate second after seeing Him resurrected/glorified. The memory would be tainted however with the undercurrent of betrayal throughout. Like when a close friend unexpectedly takes his life or is caught in a criminal affair, the shock that the others would later be left with regarding Judas and the clues that they would feel that they might have missed would be considerable. Jesus did not flush Judas out other than to Judas himself. Judas remained with the group for a good part of the evening trying to keep his cover. Some would conjure that Jesus somehow wanted him to betray Him. I rather think that Jesus was not going to stop him. The weight of the evening did not cause either man to buckle. The disciples surely, though it is undocumented, would have discussed this under current extensively in the weeks to come. The dipping could have been anyone of them at the time. The faith of our Lord is in Him being the sacrifice. The strength of our Lord is in holding true and not letting the gut wrenching emotion of this evening distract or sway Him. Satin's three previous tests were juvenile compared to these matters at hand this night. Judas's test comes after he finishes what he is about to do.
April14 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:26:31-35 SMITE THE SHEPHERD... - I don't doubt that Peter meant what He said just as much as Jesus did. I don't think that there was any doubt the Peter was set out to prove it by the strength of his will. Much of my life has been spent attempting to do the same. Here's the problem; much of our will is nothing but pride, before the fall comes pride. Peter ignored the fact that the scattering was according to prophecy. Peter ignored the fact that there were forces at work smiting the Shepherd that the flock would have no control over. Courage never was Peter's short suit, that is why later he would be quoted kjv@2Peter:1 as saying diligently add to your virtue/valor knowledge and to knowledge temperance. It is funny that an evil dictator has no problem finding minions who'd never desert or be offended, a good Shepherd hand selects the type that will but will come right back. The faith of our Lord is in the time and effort He has invested in this core group of men. The experiences and teachings that they have received in the next few weeks will birth a new spiritual understanding and wisdom fueled by the Holy Spirit. The plan is intact and moving forward now quickly.
April15 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:26:36-46 SORROWFUL EVEN UNTO DEATH - We should not think that these next several hours came easy for Jesus. To see Him as weak or having second thoughts while underplaying what He is up against severely misses the point. The sins of all mankind is not an easy thing to suffer for. The totality of griefs and sorrows being laid upon Him is wondrous to bare. Plus there is the additional concern for His sheep while they are scattered. He prayed the first time for and until He had certain confirmation. He prayed the second and third time confessing and bringing His other faculties into submission. All three prayers exhibit the fact that Jesus had His own will like we do. And as we, He needed at times to strengthen His connection to the Father by prayer in order to bring Himself fully into line; this was certainly one of those times. It is not a sign of weakness for either of us, it is a sign proper process and preparation (not neglecting to mention pure reverence). It is weakness when you are asked to maintain a level of prayer for the comfort of another or the group and cannot sustain that level long enough as Peter John and James those same hours; the temptation for sleep or distraction is too great. The faith of our Lord is unshaken. Faith however often requires the will and the impulse and body to submit and follow suit. Thus we have prayer. Side by side examples are pictured here, both a case study in what we need and need not do.
April16 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:26:47-56 THUS IT MUST BE - kjv@Acts:1:16 David prophesied about the betrayal by a friend/equal/guide kjv@Psalms:41:9kjv@Psalms:55:12-15 and the crucification kjv@Psalms:22:1-31. All this kjv@Acts:2:23 by the determined counsel and foreknowledge of God as Isaiah and others reported kjv@Isaiah:53:1-12. The faith of our Lord is in the Father and the pathway Divinely reported to Him through the prophets. Jesus places a very heavy emphasis on the prophets as should we. In modern times prophecy is uncommon and near silent dry hard ground. We lack to see it's former miraculous operation and necessity in revealing divine depth. Jesus' course was laid out before Him and well written for continuous direction and confirmation. He was out to fulfill it's every word. We should now know that we have the more sure word because of the more sure word of prophecy. We should know the tremendous arm/power of the Lord revealed in the fulfillment of the prophets report kjv@Isaiah:53:1. Modern spiritualism teaches that all things are within ones power, legions of angels can be called by us as well; yet we are taught power and prudence are two separate things. What is all important is obeying God's will, much of it revealed by the prophets, if true for our savior than surely for us.
April17 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:26:57-68 THOU HAST SAID - Imagine in a modern day court setting the judge (not the prosecutor) stacking the jury against the accused, gathering as many false witnesses as it would take, disallowing testimony for the defense, and forcing the accused into self incrementation. There would be grounds for a mistrial would there not? If Jesus is Messiah (there is evidence) would it be blasphemy for Messiah to state the obvious fact that soon the roles of judge would be reversed and He would be judging them? The chief prosecutor (who was also the judge) did not prove that Jesus was not Messiah, did not even try, for his judgement was predetermined (despised and rejected, esteemed not) and guilt was merely implied. There would be quiet a case for any defense attorney to use in the extradition proceedings to Roman authorities up to and including the physical mistreatment of the defendant if Jesus so chose. Jesus did not pursue such a course as prophesied by Isaiah, like a sheep drawn by her shearers He kept silent. There will be a proper judgement however of these proceedings and these men when the time is right. Those that smote him will be named and by the judgement by which they judged they likely could be judged as well. How is this relevant to us today? We too hold ourselves as judge and jury and prosecutor, the evidence we allow and disallow is based upon a predetermined implication of guilt. Jesus and the followers of Jesus are judged by this standard everyday and night in the high palace of public and civic opinion. The faith of our Lord is not in the legal rights He Himself has because He has forgone any such rights as sacrificial lamb. It is not in this worlds legal system (though in a negative sense it is). It is not in Peter and John outside gathering up the troops or moving legal mountains into the sea by faith. It is in His Father's plan and the report of the prophets. So must our's.
April18 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:26:69-75 THRICE - It would be hard for any Galilean in Jerusalem to deny that He is not a follower of the accused Galilean, his speech/inflections would give him away. No one was fooled of course and the more he tried to deny it the more insistent others became. So why then did he continue? Keep in mind that he swore that he wouldn't. I feel that the sense of personal danger must have been too great. If the authorities wanted to reign in the rest of Jesus' group what better place to start than with the interogation of Peter. Torture could be used to discover the whereabouts of the remainder. The mood of the public had certainly changed as well, Peter may not have made it into the hands of the authorities if taken by the hand of the mob. Peter's testimony of what Jesus had declared could be used against Jesus as well. There is so much unknown and suspicious tide to consider. Earlier Peter had thought that he understood the pressures that would come to bare against him as a disciple of the captured Christ; he underestimated the depths that this late night could erode down into and the sentiments of the aroused mobs now gathering. There are well thought out reasons not just cowardice at work in Peter's denial. Extreme danger brings with it different angles and realities that Peter had not before considered. Jesus had considered these pressures and angles though and yet was not condemning. Peter would weep bitterly. A river would flow of embarrassment and shame and powerlessness and complete let down, but, most of all a torrent of love for the man that he had invested all his devotion and hope into. Even though we may not know the full weight of momentum behind this denial, we can certainly sympathize with it as we are just as likely or more so to do the same under lesser conditions. The faith of our Lord understands the pressures His word can bare on us just as much as He knows our strengths and weaknesses. He knows that what we intend to be/do for Him is rarely what comes out; and frankly He is okay with that as long as there is open repentance and progress made. The way of our lives is a constant correction. This is a real and correctable experience Peter has stepped into that will mold and shape the remainder of his life. Not many would have the guts to step into the danger so far as Peter did, it is almost as miraculous as stepping out onto the raging waters. We cannot say that what Peter ended up doing as he realized the storm set against him was right but, we can say that it was transformative; love and devotion will continue and grow. The Lord knows how to lead us from here in our bitter and broken tears to there into His secure and loving arms. This as much as anything is the trust that we must come to have in Him.
April19 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:27:1 BLOOD MONEY - Isn't it interesting the chief priest's sudden concern the money for blood being put back into the treasury? It is as if it goes out holy and just spends an hour or two with an informant comes back and because they now have officially decided Jesus will die now it becomes contaminated blood money. Interesting the contortions the reprobate mind goes through to justify it's self. When was payment for info leading to the capture and execution of a man of miracles (possibly a prophet if not messiah), a man that you had to frame with false testimony and hung jury ever holy and just? Isn't it interesting that they bought a field to bury strangers with it? That makes it all clean and wholesome eh! Within just a few verses Peter feels his guilt, Judas feels his guilt, the chief and elders magically transform tainted money (tainted by another's guilt?) and make it whole again. So that essentially was the price Jesus was valued at, the price of a small clay quarry. The author quotes the prophet Jeremiah, though we are not actually sure were this quote is found in our canonized version. The importance still remains on the report of the prophets not being believed (as kjv@Isaiah:53:1 suggests). The Lord is silent at this point. It is not Him describing all these parts and pieces of the mob mentality. This is a collection of testimonies gathered later from insiders and onlookers that observed these events. The faith of our Lord is that by the hand of the Holy Spirit that the report of the prophets along with these collections of testimonies will be convincing and convicting and insightful to the future generations of Jews and Gentiles whom He seeks to deliver.
April20 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:27:11-26 WHETHER OF THE TWAIN - One man washes his hands of the blood guilt and the others pour it on to their heads of themselves and their children. Blood by both is made lite of. One cannot be innocent of the blood simply by washing their hands of the matter. The fact is that matters were poorly and unjustly handled in the first place. Pilate proved coward to the pressures of the Sanhedrin. Others cannot take such minute opinion of any man's life so as to not guarantee a safe and judicious proceedings, so as to not be driven by impulse or shrewd coercion. After all Jesus had done to reveal the sinful hypocrisy and false teaching and spiritual callous blindness of the Pharisees/the Sadducee/the Scribes the make up the Sanhedrin, for the general public to be so easily intimidated and manipulated is a sin equal to that of Judas even if this had not been Christ. What then of the evidences in favor, the many and daily healings, the exorcisms, the wondrous and picturesque sermons, the miracles, the possible ties to long held prophecy, the hope of Israel? Were these possibilities no factor to them at all? The blood stains of guilt cannot be washed away. The price of guilt cannot be negotiated by the guilty parties involved. Jesus' blood is meant to redeem but, if it is not accepted as such it becomes a terrible pronouncement of guilt; guilt then, guilt today. There is a notorious thief that is given amnesty by us even at this hour. He is the embodiment of our being so easily turned and manipulated and used as a driving wedge between justice and those that must judge. Perhaps the greatest revelation of our hearts by Jesus was taught without a word. The faith of our Lord is not in the present but, in the future. It is a future ripped free from the clutches of man's continuous evil imagination and heart that is deceptive above all else. It may be a good time to review kjv@Proverbs:1:20-33 in consideration of this particular multitude and then ours.
April21 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:27:27-31 HAIL - The accusation of King is what seems to be sticking in everyones craw. We have heard it from the Jews, from the the Governor, now we see it from the Roman guard. That Jesus has said that His Kingdom is not of this world is of little weight, they are all taking Him literally as of this moment. He was delivered into this position by the Jews on the evidence of blasphemy. For the Romans this may be more about the hatred for anything Jewish and about the disturbance. They seem well practiced at the art of mockery and quite creative in adapting common items to their purpose. For us it is a pipeline into the dynamics and mechanics of the mob mentality, the overwhelming proof of man's sinful nature. Everything that man purports himself to be and to have evolved into is contradicted and disproved by the frequent and vile occurrences such as this. Jesus had to endure such contradiction kjv@Hebrews:12:3 because such contradiction is mankind's nature. The faith of our Lord is in the role of revealer. He reveals the heart of man whole as so He does man individual. He is rejected and despised not for what miraculous things He did (those seem to be forgotten) but, for what these things reveal about us. Often He does not even have to say or do a thing to reveal us at the core, has simply to endure our action we mount against Him. Like the Roman guard, we might think that we are on top. For how much longer? Until Kingdom come?
April22 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:27:32-44 HE TRUSTED IN GOD - King David seemed to have the clearest vision of what the Lord would have to suffer. Many of the articles he would pen into his songs at first reading would seem to point to David or else no one. But, when did David suffer these things he wrote of? Without what we see here happening unto Jesus we would have to conclude that David was near paranoid, highly over exaggerated, consumed with the pressures mounted against him, obsessed with the persecution of the wicked and the silence of a slumbering God. With Jesus we wonder what then is David somewhere in this audience that he can see these things sentenced onto Jesus by the Lord of His Lord? His descriptions are uncanny to the smallest of details; the parting of clothes, the offer of gall, the wagging of heads. Where is David? How did he see this? Who has believed his report? To whom had the arm of his Lord been revealed? While the sign above speaks the official accusation, the words on the ground heard spoken declare the actual accusation, that He trusted in God. This is apparently what one gets for trusting in such a far fetched notion as God, says even the Jews. What would it take for them to believe? For Him to save Himself and come down, but, wait... that would break the commandment of God and of the prophets. In other words, for them to believe in Jesus He would have to break every commandment and become like them. Why would God even want their belief if that is the case? David was deeply troubled by what he foresaw as were the other messianic prophets. Yet in every messianic psalm he come to the conclusion the seed - Jesus would hold true to the end and that the Father would avenge Him with all certainty. David took comfort and inspiration in that. The faith of our Lord is in His Lord the Father and in seeing the plan through to it's end. It is in the words He had had recorded long before hand to remind Himself and to tow us through the dark cloudy mist of perception and truth that we not loose sight of Him. How the Jews lost that sight, it is almost as if they were blinded for the sake of germinating this seed into the far reaches of the Gentile nations by their rejection. The more even that the report/arm of the Lord is being revealed.
April23 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:27:45-56 MY GOD MY GOD - The gospel writers record Jesus saying seven things on the cross, Matthew records one - the most important. Few there on the scene are going to know that Jesus quotes from kjv@Psalms:22:1, but those of us that do know and are interested we should go on to read the entire chapter kjv@Psalms:22. There is a reason now that Jesus qualifies as the governor among nations deserving of all man's praises and adoration. He despised not the afflicted nor turned His face from them, the meek shall be satisfied, because that His Lord was not far from Him and saved Him from the mouth of the lion. He poured Himself out like water, His heart melted like wax, He was cast upon this will of the Father's from the womb. Now the course has been fulfilled. The full weight of sin had been transfered upon Him; because of which the Father stepped aside momentarily and was far from helping. Jesus yelled out victoriously with tremendous strength when no strength should have been left in Him. The faith of our Lord was in that He trusted in the Father and the Father did deliver Him. The weight of sin was not as great as the pain of separation and the drowning fatigue of death not so great as the defiant liberating yelp against it. Those that saw these things feared greatly, saying, Truly this was the Son of God.
April24 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:27:57-61 DISCIPLES - There are twelve men (now eleven) that we use the specific title Disciple for. There are many others even in high places, even secretive that we use the more general term disciple for as well. Three are mentioned early on at the tomb burying Jesus (A forth Nicodemus reported by John). The two men in particular are members of the Sanhedrin and are thereby given consent for burial and possession of the body by Pilate. Joseph is elsewhere described as a counselor, the word having direct ties to this governing body. Pilate may have seen these men as "non consenting" to the crucification but, surely not as pupils of the convicts' teachings. Had the major disciples attempted such they would have either been detained to squelch any possible uprising or they would have brought intense criticism as to the validity of the burial should something happen to the body under his watch. In these two men Pilate would find a comfortable political solution to the awkward/crucial issue of what to do with the body. These disciples are very important to birth and history of the church, as much as any other even though they were somewhat hidden away. There is very little that we have to go on to know how much of this Jesus had prepared for or how much that he had left to come about organically or by the Spirit. My guess would be all of the above. The more obvious evidence is that He had the faith to leave it to capable hands after His departure. The faith of our Lord is in the ability of His Father and His Holy Spirit. It is in peoples and places we may not have considered friendly to our cause. It is in the emotional but thoughtful obedience and effort of some loving women fearless that would attend to Him. It is in peoples two thousand years still having access to their testimonies that will come to believe. It is in a stone being rolling away, human eyes peeking in to see an Angel sitting at the foot of uninhabited burial linens and a folded napkin. It is in four women running back to the house to tell the others in the dawn's early light. Our Lord's faith is most supreme!
April25 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:27:62-66 THAT DECEIVER - We see the hatred or else the guilt of the priests and Pharisees turning to paranoia. As they saw it the first error was to be deceived into believing Jesus to be Christ, the last error to be deceived into believing His resurrection. If one could be deceived into either of these errors, one could be deceived into staging events and evidence to deceive others. Apparently, Pilate did not trust the Jewish temple guard either. Roman guards were already attached to the temple, so they were to be used to secure the sepulcher. So the tomb was sealed, move the stone/break the seal, and the guard was placed around it. This is the day after. The question becomes, with the evidence of the resurrection so central to the debate, why wasn't more done by either side to make sure the evidence? Given the accusation of deceit by the one and the accusation of extreme hatred and blood guilt by the other? The only one truly that could have done any better would have been Pilate and he had attempted to wash his hands of the matter. Others might feel that Jesus or the Father could have done better, but, really how much is enough? How much secured evidence does it take to make the issue convincing to ardent skeptics? Will there not always be areas of doubt? What about doubt and debate though is unhealthy? The Word of God has always been carried to the farther reaches more by its' opposition than it has its' friendly alliances. The faith of our Lord is in His read of the nature of man doing what it is going to do, the plan of God accounting for exactly that, consent and opposition to Him both carrying out His objective. Remember that He/we has thousands of years of historical insight into spreading His word ahead of this to know man's sparse obedience and coagulating opposition. He knows how to get things done.
April26 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesus HAIL - I would think that Jesus imagined days like today as a young man; this day and the day after the judgement. Imagine the joy that He would have actually coming to this group of women. I love how the four gospels give an unintentional sense of confusion (not contradiction) and chaos over the events simply because there would be. Much like eyewitness testimony in a court case, we are left to piecing details together into a cohesive sequence, much is happening at one time. There is confusion, excitement, joy, fear, tears, relief, reverence, fulfillment, disbelief, new belief, all the emotions that one would expect. For the angels watching upon this, they have to be busting out in heaven don't they? This isn't the end of their work by a long shot but, this resurrection is a huge piece. Jesus seems very calm and dignified about this all, still focused on the task ahead. At the same time He has to be excited about seeing and revealing His living breathing glorified self to these loyal brethren. Like a liter of young pups they will be running up quite surprised and tails a wagging, barking gleefully thrilled to see their Master. After thousands of years of preparation for this, this has to be a big moment for Him too. And it seems only fitting that the first revelation was to these women who had been and were this dawn ministering so faithfully to Him. The faith of our Lord is very much like a Shepherd, very much like a parent, very much like a master. The work is hard but, the rewards very pleasing. The work continues but, our Lord of all people has to know how big and great this accomplishment of His is today.
April27 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:28:11-15 COMMONLY REPORTED - It may illustrative of what the truth is up against all of the time. The people most important outside the actual story know only what is reported. Two parties may be in cahoots together and put a third party to blame. It is reasonably cheap when you are in a position of power to disregard the facts and bend the will of the people. Who is going to know? Some one from within these two groups might confess at some point (could have in this case) but, as long as the majority holds to the deception suspicion can be redirected. How much of this has happened in the past? Who is to say; how deep into this do you really want to go? How much of this is happening now? How much of what we know to be true is rather a cover up or deception? It would drive one crazy with the manifold possibilities and puzzling conspiracies and produce nothing but isolation and seething contempt in general (the opposite of love). One would likely still be left no closer to the actual truth for having pursued this course minus Christ as well. This is the chaos surrounding truth and who is the author of chaos? Man wanted to be like gods knowing good and evil? Well here it is to know one of the vicious clinging tentacles of evil's reach, the ease at which truth/facts/evidences can be spun and commonly misreported. The faith of our Lord is fully aware of this and yet does not get side tracked by attempting to combat these tendencies directly; they are what they are. Instead, it must be felt that by sticking to the presentation of the full gospel light that these hidden things of darkness eventually will be exposed. And who is the author of such singular faith?
April28 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Matthew:28:16 WITH YOU ALWAY - Over five hundred people at different points saw Jesus glorified by resurrection according to Paul kjv@1Corinthians:15:6, some present at His ascension. Of the several occasions available, Matthew focuses on a meeting in Galilee ahead of Pentecost with the eleven to close His gospel. Everyone present there appeared to worship Him, but, we are left with the observable sense that at this point there was still some intellectual doubt present in the group. I think this to be admirably honest. We know that all were later present in the upper room for the infilling of the Holy Spirit and from Church tradition/history we know that each actually did go on to pursue this great world wide commission; so the doubts must have been laid to rest somewhere from this time forward. Doubt can take several different forms. One can be in agreement with but, still have some reservation. One can be in flat out denial. One can be scientifically skeptical awaiting further/conclusive data. Seeing Jesus stand before you may not cause all doubt to be erased immediately and I believe that this is alright with Jesus, He understands it as natural as long as is is not outright unconvincable denial; everyone comes to believe at different rates. Once on-board, occasion to doubt doesn't vanish either. To know however that our Christ is always with us and that all power is given Him in heaven and earth is of great great comfort. Doubt can be caused by fear, doubt can be caused by tribulation or the sudden death of a loved one. It is in these times most of all that for us to Love God and others (which is the the whatsoever He has commanded) as He has loved us and given Himself for us (even our enemies) that our doubts subside by faithful obedience. The faith of our Lord is always of great comfort to us and He wants it to be that way. With that comfort comes the power to pursue even this Great Commission. And with the power given to Him all things are to be gathered back unto Him to which we perform our obedience. Therein is the true worship even to the end of this world!
April29 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Mark:1:1-8 PREPARE YE - Luke begins his gospel by tying it immediately to the report of the prophets. The prophets had foretold the series of events ahead of Christ to watch for, Malachi speaks of a messenger preparing the way, John the Baptist fills that roll. The importance of all Messianic prophecy cannot be set aside. God intentionally uses prophecy to show that it is from Him and that it has His strength and power behind it and not man's. John's message was two fold, dict:naves repentance in preparation for the immediate appearance of our Lord. Repentance in and of itself does not save, it acknowledges the necessity of Christ and makes room for the person of Christ to enter. It is the belief that Jesus Christ is the promised savior that actually saves. As an outward confirmation/confession of one's repentance and belief in the coming Messiah John instituted a baptism. John's baptism did not mean to save, only to prepare, we find Paul taking a remnant of John's disciples evangelizing the further gospel to them and baptizing with the Holy Spirit. We then have two major components listed to prepare for Christ, prophecy and repentance, God's power to make what has been said before hand happen, man's power/obligation to change course in very specific manner toward the one prophesied about: Jesus Christ. It is the faith of our Lord in advance of His coming out that these preparations have been fully made.
April30 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Mark:1:9-13 SPIRIT DRIVEN - The Holy Spirit is mentioned here descending upon Him, driving Him immediately into the wilderness. One action the result of an obedience the other testing for another obedience. And so He moves continuously one obedience to the next. We also have the ministry of angels and the symbol of the prophetic foundation that has been laid John the Baptist. All of these influences work together and are accounted for in Jesus. Then there are also the elements pushing against Him, the inhospitable wilderness, the danger of wild beasts and of course the probing of Satan. One other factor to consider is the voice from heaven confirming pleasure in the beloved Son. It is the faith of our Lord that because He is the Son, because He is anointed and driven of the Holy Spirit, ministered to by angels, He will continue onward in obedience to the goal at hand despite anything that would come up against Him. His faith contains a large measure of spiritual valor. So must ours, valor toward obedience.
May1 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Mark:1:14-20 KINGDOM - Jesus mentions the "kingdom of God frequently as do His Apostles kjv@STRING:kingdom+of+God. It has an importance in the message that I fear we often miss. We take the repentance and belief in the gospel and try to run only with that without placing those things in the deeper context of why they are to be done. Jesus is purposely trying to avoid the immediate political connotations that "Christ" or "Messiah" would have to the people of Israel hungry for regaining their own national determination and governance. His kingdom instead begins and ends with Him and what He must accomplish for the sake of all mankind, having done so the portion that the Father will give Him, the spoils of which that He then will divide amongst the many, the kingly role He will play when all things are finally gathered to Him. This kingdom on our part is first sought, received, entered, costly to enter, preached, inherited, rewarded, waited for, seen coming with power, revealed from out of a mystery, within us, entered with much tribulation, etc... The kingdom suggests God's governance/authority/judgment, God's economy/providence, His design and desire and know how. Repenting for anything less is repenting for more selfish reasons. Believing the gospel of salvation/redemption/remission/cleansing for anything less is believing for more selfish reasons. The faith of our Lord is in an actual kingdom that is now in Heaven, for us both there in the future and here in our hearts. It grows like a mustard seed, it is as the little children coming unto 'Me', it is of very glad tidings. It is a treasure. It is a long and determined process much like making fisherman fishers of men.
May2 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Mark:1:21-28 AUTHORITY - Witnesses of Jesus immediately attributed His power to some new doctrine, twice in this passage. He had shown uncommon power in His teaching and also in the exorcism of one man's demons. They weren't yet willing to attribute this to God the Father working through the incarnate Son of God. Jesus doing these things was not dependent upon their belief as is often thought (as in if everyone believes enough we can do this). It is not in trusting demons announce to everyone who He is (as shown by His rebuke). His power is exerted here in obedience to the Father for the sake of those who do/will believe and for the person possessed. The disciples may not have known about these abilities before this and it may take them some time to understand but, this authority does not come from any special doctrine, it comes from a special relationship Son to Father and a special promise made as far back as kjv@Genesis:3:15. The faith of our Lord is in the authority of the Father and the authority the Father in turn has given Him. It appears to us as authority because it is. His fame may spread but, that is not the purpose that is one of several results.
May3 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Mark:1:29-34 PETER'S WIFE - Not much thought ever goes into the tremendous role of Peter's wife in the early church. Her husband in a sense is stolen away. What becomes of the finances and family business while he is away? What becomes of their plans? Who is her daily companion? She is left to care for her mother and possibly raise kids (assumed) by herself. We see that the ministry frequents their house, a blessing to have him near but, extra work for her and her mom none the less. We must also consider the burden of being Peter's wife when she goes out in public. I don't know that we are ever told how she truly felt about this and the types of struggles she endured so that Peter could become the influence that he latter became. We do know that she joined him latter on and came along at least part of the time kjv@1Corinthians:9:5. I have no doubt that she loved her husband and the Lord dearly. I have no doubt that she approved very much of what the 'boys' were out doing. I wish to think knowing my Lord's sensitivity to everything/one around Him that He had private conversation(s) with her maybe out there on her porch in the sunset on other days. The faith of our Lord isn't in just what has been written for us to digest intellectually it is in the practical and personal matters that each of these things imply. As with any ministry there are people and burdens being carried by those people behind the scenes that outsiders may not ever notice. Hopefully the people that they are serving take note. Their service is just as important to the storyline as those up and out front. Their sacrifice is perhaps more than any of ours and they should know with certainty that our Lord is very much pleased and honored. I do not know if this woman lived to see her husband's death, odds are so, if not she would have sensed (or have been gently told) that this was part of the deal. And yet, she would have looked at Peter the way only a wife could and encourage him to continue with the joy of her smile and the tears of her embrace. This women and others like her should be, nay will be highly sainted. They are as much a powerful wittness to Christ as those exorcised of demons.
May4 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Mark:1:35-39 ALL MEN SEEK THEE - Peter leads a group of people in the pre-dawn outside Capernaum. Fame is spreading quickly and the opportunities of the new day are invigorating/intoxicating, perhaps keeping them awake; except for one thing, Jesus their miracle man is missing. There will be a great swell of people coming in from everywhere in the coming hours. People will want to be healed. People will want to be released from demons. People will want a political/religious uprising. People will want to witness miracles, but, will they want to believe in Jesus as the Son of Man? Sure all men would seek after Him, they seek after still today, what is it however that they seek of Him. Peter seeks after Jesus. What are his motives? Good I am sure but, pure? What is best? It is Peters' house that they are staying at, it is his hometown, he doesn't have to leave his wife or his front door step and the lost sheep are coming to him. I am not accusing him nor trying to read his mind, just saying He is new at this fame and miracle thing and the excitement may cloud his judgment/expectations. And the anonymous others with him, are they following Jesus or Peter? Where do they finally find Him? Where Peter's mind is racing with the many opportunities Jesus' mind is settling in worship and supplication to the Father. The settled mind seeks God's holiness, His omniscience, His righteousness, His communion, and from that reverent position receives a peaceful confident heart and direction. The faith of our Lord is not in all the opportunities to use His powers that the others might see it is in the need to maintain those powers and opportunities under will of the Father where all such blessings come. Power makes for itself plenty of opportunities, the focus of prayer makes so that the right opportunity come to light.
May5 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Mark:1:40-45 GO THY WAY - Lepers were outcast from the society until given inspection and clearance from the priests. The general population untrained in these matters were to comply with the law in this regard. By showing and telling the people first this man is both breaking the commandment given by Jesus who just healed him and causing the people to break the law by not segregating him until the clear signal was given. There is no doubt that he is healed. Jesus is showing respect toward the law and the rule of order. Jesus cannot be accused of stepping outside this law. He is nearly in a no win situation of either leaving a man in his leprosy, being accused of neglecting the law (which He will anyway) or having His fame spread about forcing His ministry away from the cities. Jesus of course chooses the course of most compassion. The faith of our Lord is clear even when there is no clear choice apparent, to uphold the law by being compassionate even if there is a price to pay or a negative consequence, to adapt to the situation there after as it leads you on the ground. It is a compassion not just for compassion's sake but for the law's and for what God has ahead.
May6 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Mark:2:1-12 SAW THEIR FAITH - Faith is visible. It may not always be what you'd expect to see though, at times it may appear as resourcefulness and with some of those times it may be the resourcefulness of others. In this case the oddity is that it seems like pretty destructive and dangerous faith at the expense of Peter the home owner. We are not told what it was that these men believed about Jesus other than the implication that He was the one who could heal their friend. We no nothing other the paralytic's faith. Accusation isn't always seen at first, it is more often perceived and has much to do with a man's reasoning. You can almost expect that it is hiding somewhere out in the crowded room in multiple places. Doubt that raises up to the charge of blaspheme may be easier to detect as it may show up in the eyes and faces. It may also come from knowing the men's hearts with whom you have been dealing. In Jesus' case, He would almost have to start each occasion from the presumption of the other's disbelief, even of His disciples, but, He'd be looking for every occasion to help who He could to believe. Some times an occasion may not be ideal such as the unruliness and disorderliness of these four. On the other hand it may have been the most opportune occasion given the foul reasoning filling the room air. The faith of our Lord encourages risk taking. He is honest about His surroundings but, faithful to the Father and therefore on the look out for opportunities that may even fall from the sky to engage and promote the faith of others.
May7 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Mark:2:13-17 HEARD IT - Some one has either told Jesus or He has caught the sounds in the corner of His ear that there is growing displeasure with Him eating and drinking with sinners. I don't know whether the religious elite are still holding out a chance for Him as it would be hard to deny His miraculous powers or whether they have outright given up. I do believe that there is something substantial going on culturally that modern audiences would not be attuned to; Jesus is being radical to their viewpoint. Often the best teaching is not discussed it is exposed. Jesus is not going to them and partaking in their sin, He is going out like a physician to where they are and gracefully calling them to establish the ground work of something much better. If that means eating in a room of them, then by all means. Contact with one man leads to the man inviting His circle of friends. These friends are coming to partake of their own friendships and because of their trust in their host in turn they trust in His goodness. No doubt fame precedes Him here but, even without fame the trust building process works the same; why not build upon what is already there? Other's fear the associations that may be implied, if one hangs out with sinners one must be a sinner. The faith of our Lord is not afraid of such possible negative associations, He is afraid of what may happen to these people should He not reach out. In His eyes He is a physician and physicians go where people are sick. He does not partake in their sickness, he partakes in the future fellowship that might come should He be able to win their further trust.
May8 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Mark:2:18-22 THE BRIDEGROOM - There are some key elements to consider here. There is the purpose, the occassion, the vessel and the substance. The purpose of our Lord has always been the same, to have the Father gather all things back unto Him. Along the timeline of achieving said purpose, different occassions are brought up nessecitating different vessels and substance. Take the illustration of wine. There is wine for everyday events, there is wine for very special events. Approaching the first coming of Jesus a certain container and substance was called for. Now that He has come in person with the intention to marry a new and different container and substance is required, a vessel and substance of much greater honor as the occasion has dramatically shifted. Not that anything is wrong with the old wine, it has and continues to serve the overall purpose. It is not the purpose but, is a step toward the purpose. Pouring the new wine into the old container alongside the old substance is not good for either wine for the old container will burst, both substances will pour to the ground, the overall purpose will not be forwarded. The same truth can be illustrated in the original question as to fasting. The purpose is constant and moving forward, the occasion changes nessecitating totally new attitude of feasting, the occasion is promised to change again shortly, but, for that brief moment we had a glimps of the expectation and honor of being invitees/attendees of a most heavenly marriage banquet of our Lord. Don't get confused by the changing of vessel and substance as occasions are dynamically driven by His purpose. The faith of our Lord is much larger than the finite things our minds are left to consider. He attempts to illustrate them in terms that we can identify with, really though, how much do we actually understand? Just because it is bigger than we can understand doesn't mean that it doesn't exist or is anything less. Wine/Fasting/Sabbath/Law, these are but things to get us to understand slight as that may be His big big picture.
May9 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Mark:2:23-3:6 LORD ALSO OF THE SABBATH - How frustrating it must be to ask your accusers to engage you rationally and have them not answer you. How welcome would it be to have the opposing view point stand forth and debate matters of law and truth on logical and spiritual merits. How enlightening it would have been even of our persuasion to hear learned point and counterpoint, to battle it out to wits end. We don't have that however here and up against Jesus we won't ever have it. No one in His presence had ever seen anyone teach with such authority; if you can't beat Him then you have to trap Him; get Him to beat Himself. Plucking handfuls of corn? Healing on the Sabbath? Is this really the best that you have Pharisee? He asks you. Do you not have an answer Herodian? Or does the answer that you have weaken your position? The public's perception of your position? Jesus is angry with them. He has every right. But, anger is not going to get Him to stray off course. He will walk the mine field that you've laid out by rising above it. The faith of our Lord is that in every other thing that He is Lord over, He is also Lord of the Sabbath. He is our Sabbath literally; our peace, our rest, our praise and communion. If critics acted this way in His day how likely are they to act the same in ours?
May10 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Mark:3:7-12 LEST THEY THRONG - Arrangements have to be made for Jesus' safety; not hostile endangerment per se but, eager/desperate. The pressing of the crowds were like those in a famine at a food distribution line where innocent people do get trampled. Perhaps the most dangerous thing is that people now presume that they can get healed simply by touching Jesus. They don't even have to converse with Him or receive His consent/action. We are told of this being true in a few cases but, not as I am aware as a general rule. With this inhibition torn down the people feel free to press in on and through and around anything or anyone that might stand in their own way. Crowd control is always a major factor as multitudes take on a illogical unpredictable dynamic all of their own. As we see with modern terrorist tactics, a crowd can even be used against itself by malcontents when excited into a stampede or incited into a riot. How odd/nightmarish it must of seemed to be packed into a tight space of sickly even demon possessed people all moving in without self prohibition toward the center. The plan was to stay close to the shoreline cutting off half of the encirclement, providing a means of retreat via small swift boat. The faith of our Lord is very bold but, certainly not stupid. The nature of men, the nature of desperation, the nature of crowds is all taken into account. Being a disciple was often like being a body guard, intense, physical, eerie, and dangerous; not the place for mere academics. The whole experience must have been becoming more and more unimaginable to them. The Lord I am sure takes that into account too.
May11 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Mark:3:13-19@ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Mark:3:13-19 HE ORDAINED TWELVE - Of several select individuals called to Him in the mountain Jesus ordained but twelve. There is the thought that if twelve why not have fifty, if fifty why not have five hundred....? Jesus is revealing something very substantial about the divine plan at this moment. It is not that He is cutting anyone out, all men are to be discipled under Christ's tutelage and all have been sent to declare the gospel. All men have been given communion with the Lord and been granted to suffer for and as their Savior for their own and the church's edification. These twelve will now be sent two by two to preach/heal/cast out demons. A hundred more will be sent soon after, they will be gifted similar ability but not in the same sense of being ordained. What Jesus is doing is establishing order not just for now but for all the future. The situation now is developing on the ground where both the following of disciples and the following of seekers has grown beyond capabilities of the loose fit organizational structure previous. As the numbers increase and the danger increases, as the training of the select few intensifies, the time has come to make the organization more formal. Think of a small business today that grows into that next bigger level and the changes necessitated by that. In the long run this move proves most valuable to the early first century when many falsely proclaimed to be apostles that most people knew better who their Apostles were. This move even later gave second century scholars a road map to verifying and canonizing certain Apostolic epistles over a flood of lesser. There are weakness of course further out to the system as we see in the centuries leading up to the reformation as men corrupt the system but, the scriptures yet hold true as pillars even in those turbulent times. "Sola Scriptura" (only scripture) (Hebrew old with Apostolic new) becomes the protestants reforming creed lessening but, not eliminating the influence of church held traditions. I believe that the faith of our Lord is in being fully aware of the future Church that He is building and the types of problems and issues it will undergo. These issues may be healthy in that they are a constant stirring of the resolution of mens' intents and wills but, certainly less resolvable for true seekers had He not taken the steps that He just took. His declaration of these twelve gives the Holy Spirit written reinforcement/authority to conduct it's operations on a massive scale after Christ's Accession.
May12 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Mark:3:20-30 - The friends close to Jesus suspect the toll of this ministry on a man to be greater than it actually is on Jesus. Perhaps they are beginning to feel the wear on themselves. Jesus had just returned from a prayer filled time of reinvigoration and reorganization; did they? Jesus' daily life was filled with such moments even in the midst of such business; was theirs? Even when the day became too busy and too crowded even to eat, Jesus would spend entire nights soaking in the Fathers communion; did they? Those that oppose Jesus never seem to tire because there are so many of them coming from so many directions; an endless supply of them so that one individual never has to tire. Add to it that even for one opponent it is so much easier to portray a foe in a negative light than it is to advance the cause and work of the much better light. At this point opponents don't have to reason nor defend what they are saying, just throw it out there like a sniper then run and hide till the next. Eventually the opponent however comes to the point where He has discounted the integrity and work of the Holy Spirit to such a measure that he either passively or vigorously aligns his own self with the workings of the Devil. If the Spirit is working to establish Jesus as Messiah and you are working against that, well matters have become quiet grave for you mister junior devil. Some people might do this for a time, come to the realization of who Jesus is and then repent. For those who continue on however, repentance and salvation are far from reach. What forgiveness from damnation would one ever hope to have? This is the blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, not finding repentance, not allow the Spirit's work to continue inside of you. The faith of our Lord is well reasoned, though we may not allow ourselves to see it as so. Friend's think He is beside Himself, enemies think that He is an agent of Satan, neither of which can defend their statements. Not only is He in line, He does everything spiritual to keep Himself in line. Do we?
May13 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Mark:3:31-35 THE SAME IS MY - It could very well be that Jesus' half brothers and sisters did not see Him as the Christ yet. To them He was still only their brother. Mary His mom probably knows too well His heavenly appointment and is having difficulty with what it all means; she may have been pressured into this. It may seem harsh that He would reply to their request in this way, but, it also seems harsh that they would call Him out in front of a crowd. Some commentaries suggest that they were the "friends" or a part of those that were suggesting that He was "beside Himself". I do not believe that Jesus is discounting His physical relationship to them, He is elevating His spiritual relationship to greater humanity and thereby expressing their need to get on board believing in Him fully as their Lord and Savior. It is a difficult relationship to fathom being the half brother say of the Son of God. Few will ever have to process faith in those terms. The time is short however. They will remember His words no doubt when His death comes. Also notice the absence of His dad Joseph, by all appearances deceased. Did Joseph ever come to true spiritual faith? Did Joseph ever do the will of God? We are never told. The faith of Jesus reaches out into all the world but, is also close to home in His brothers and sisters and mom. Their entry into His kingdom is on the same exact terms as all the rest. He is not willing that any should perish but, that they come to repentance and knowledge of Christ.
May14 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Mark:4:1-20 WITHIN WITHOUT WAYWARD - This is a foundational parable that helps us to understand the rest. Principal one is that it is not given for others to receive the payload understanding of these parables; the revelation of said parable is a Jesus to sanctified believer exclusive, spiritually discerned. In fact, no man can come to it complete with out living and proving it out which requires a strong devotion to Christ. Theoretically, a class of college senors can analyze a Jesus parable and probably come to the same initial message that a believer can, maybe to another level or two, but that is as far as they can take it. Because they do not believe in Jesus it holds no further interest, any further meaning is stolen away. Many religions can be/have been formed from borrowing the superficial understandings of these parables; this is what Jesus has always strived to protect Himself from. However, by believing squarely in the righteousness of Jesus the desire will be to search out and grow into the message further. The message has to be applied into the daily life of a believer and experienced fully before the payload Jesus is revealing comes to fruition. The heart to apply oneself to it's growth is where the difficulty comes, as some believers lack the root, others lack the valor and fortitude, others lack the will to keep worldly influences weeded out. As hard as it is for believers to come to this knowledge without sincerity and endurance it is outright impossible for the insincere and academic critic. The faith of Jesus does not cast it's pearls before the swine and it cannot be counterfeited nor universalized. This is utter foolishness to the wise and learned, but, this foolishness is deliberately made to be our wisdom. Take this introductory understanding into the remaining parables and your efforts to live/grow into this word will yield plenty fruit.
May15 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Mark:4:21-25 EARS TO HEAR - If a believer and non believer arrive at the same conclusion on this parable then the parable has not accomplished its stated objective. The parable concerns all things hidden being revealed. Are you open and receiving, willing to endure and grow into such revelation? With the measure with which you hear this you will be given more. The faith of our Lord is all about an experiential process that brings His light into the darkest corners of our existence. It requires an openess and devotion few are willing to submitt themselves to, the rewards however are promised to liberating.
May16 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Mark:4:26-29 SO IS THE KINGDOM - Let's again try to recall that it is easy for believer and non believer to begin at the same point with this parable but, if the two end at the same place the believer has operated from mere carnal intellect. The true understanding is going to require the Spirit/revelation and engagement with the growth process. Ask/Seek/Knock. There are some clues however to begin with. Action in terms of self should be changed to terms of the broader Kingdom. Receiving should be changed into spreading. Analytical pre-process should be changed to trust and observance, investment and experience seed to sickle. One does not have to know how the process works for the process to work, it works regardless as it is supposed to. The faith of our Lord is not the one being depicted here as not knowing how it is going to happen, that is our faith. It is not that He will leave it all up to us to fill in the details or to nature to make this Kingdom happen. His faith is in the "Kingdom come, Thy Will be done" principal where if we obey the Will the Will will take us where He wills us to be. The commitment is our's, the details are left to Him.
May17 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Mark:4:30-34 AS THEY WERE ABLE TO HEAR - When they were alone then He expounded. Don't you wish that they would have recorded these teachings? Saved us all a lot of trouble? That tells us two important things right off the bat. One, there is much to take in, too much for one parable/session/three year apprenticeship. Two, Jesus does not mean for just anybody to know because not everyone spiritually discerns it. Despite the huge amount of time He spent publicly/privately, I believe that it can be shown that not even the disciples discerned the message spiritually until after Pentecost. Not because it is too heavy intellectually but, because the mind always tries to discern it intellectually which leads to counterfeiting and approximation and various interpretations. It is almost as if Jesus is investing His teaching forward to the future. He is depositing into their memories knowing that these teachings will not take hold until after they become spiritual. For the moment it is a tiny seed, there is some potential/benefit, what it is though is not what it will become. There is process, there is nurturing, there is husbandry. Take the Kingdom message, He plants it now, He expounds it to those who will carry it forward after Him, they invest/devote themselves to seeking it/Him out, He infuses the seed/their efforts with Spirit, there is miraculous growth. The mind resists this, it bypasses the essential steps and determines the meaning that serves itself best, it universalizes the teaching with other teachings that it can come with on it's own. The mind wants/expects a kingdom of much different design on much different terms. Ask yourself, is this a seed of intellect, a seed of self growth and determination, or is it a seed of spirit, a seed of Heaven on Earth, ever lasting redemption? The faith of our Lord is in big plans and changes in the hearts of all men, a faith where the things of this carnal world are not much more than fertilizer for a much greater thing. That we so easily/readily confuse and contradict spiritual process even as believers by resorting to the present intellect such ethereal matters itself is every indication of the types of things Jesus is up against. The other thing to see is how several parables are meant to interact together as a whole to stimulate/compound growth and yet to protect growth from diseased carnal influences. It will be a substantial and healthy enough end product that the angelic community will be able to be mixed back into it and cohabitate with it as well.
May18 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Mark:4:35-41 LET US PASS - Fearful and no faith tie together in this passage. This Greek "no" may also suggest the definite no, as in never or not yet faith. Intellectual consent got them into the boat. Intellectual consent assumes that everything ahead will go alright, if trouble comes up there will be time to adjust or abandon. Spiritual consent assumes that no matter what comes up against it it will be as planned, placing more faith in the master of the wind than the obvious physical tumult of the tempest. Fear is natural in either respect, it is where intellectual consent hides to when faced with something greater or more threatening/unknown comes against it's approved consent/control. Just as these men had never faced fear to this level before they had never faced faith. Note that this took place at the end of one of the most successful single days thus far of their discipleship/ministry. The faith of our Lord challenges both faith and fear to it's core and calls for some uncomfortable occassions. It rebukes not the person nor the elements but the forces stirring them toward disturbance. Peace and calm are found in the divine settling of these compulsively consuming momentums. Let us pass over to the other side!
May19 @ @ RandyP comments: mypad:FaithOfJesuskjv@Mark:5:1-20 GO HOME TELL - How many times has Jesus forbidden others to tell of their healing? Why is it different in this case? The situation with the citizens of Gadarenes may necessitate it. The testimony of this man may be more productive for the Kingdom than Jesus staying and stirring things up more. People often think that if they were to see a miracle that they would believe. I believe that in most cases it is not that they don't believe it is how they respond to their belief. Belief in this case has caused fear and fear has caused discomfort and discomfort has caused opposition. Belief when not tied to faith is threatening. Why did Jesus not insist on staying to work through this resistance? Efficiency! Demons retreat into the sea rather than be tormented and are swallowed up. Men retreat into businesses and idols rather than be threatened and are swallowed up. Jesus leaves them a reminder, a man that has nothing but his own personal testimony. The man is as much a testimony against them even from his home in Decapolis Syria. His testimony is honest and simple, what Jesus did for Him, how Jesus had had compassion on him. Many marveled. The faith of our Lord has every option available to it. It is not limited even to Him having to be there. The best option can change to meet the situation, but, He always is clear as to what the best option for that occasion is. No doubt there is much prayer and spiritual diligence involved in Him being prepared for these types of decisions. This report may very well be Gentile Syria's first exposure to the Gospel of Christ. Marvel may be accurate for they would not yet know that Jesus is Messiah for all mankind. In kjv@Mark:7:31 Jesus will be on the coast of this man's homeland.
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