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FaithOfJesus
Found: February4 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@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.


FaithOfJesus
Found: February23 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@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.


FaithOfJesus
Found: March20 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@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.


FaithOfJesus
Found: April12 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@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.


FaithOfJesus
Found: May6 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@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.


FaithOfJesus
Found: May23 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@Mark:6:14-29 AND THEREFORE - How do you explain Jesus? We see how vulnerable human reasoning in this passage. We have the reasoning King Herod, Herodias, her daughter, and others. Each have their bend. Some rationale is being bent by guilt/fear/drunken enticement/exaggerated commitments/justifying unlawful marriages. Other rationale is being bent by retribution/scheming/manipulation/deceit. Anothers' rationale is bent by the vanity of youth/sexual seduction/promiscuity and either a naivete or collusion of her mother's true intents. Others are bent by misinterpreted scripture or myth. All of this and more works against John and now Jesus. People like to think that they are free to make the right choices, that discernment and reasoning is their particular even inherent strength; it is simply not true. The carnal mind is at enmity against the spiritual, the closest it can come to being right is a counterfeit substitution of what God himself has chosen to reveal. Much of that is hidden inside parables and prophecies and large millennium wide swaths of history so that it can't be counterfeited and so that only true diligent seekers can be brought to it. In our own lives the question must be where is our rationale being bent? What sin or carnal trait is obstructing or altering the course of spiritual insight? What keeps us from true discernment of the facts and road map before us? The faith of our Lord is implied in this passage, implied that He knows what He is up against/what we are up against that He must save us from. When He contrasts light to darkness and groups all of mankind into darkness this constant bend is much of what He is talking about. Worse yet people more love this darkness more than surrendering it to His light. They continue to use the same rationale to make the same decisions and take the same actions with the same insolence and self determination and kill off the things that contradict or counteract their torturous corruptions. Somehow they justify this all as being right vaguely aware if at all of what is actually occurring. AND THEREFORE and with this bend they attempt to explain away Jesus.


FaithOfJesus
Found: June8 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@Mark:10:13-16 FORBID THEM NOT - It is an encouraging sign of reverence that parents would bring children up to Jesus to be touched. That the disciples were rebuked for holding them back shows me that the event was not staged. Part of their discipleship no doubt was to hold back crowds allowing Jesus more room to operate. There must of have been a reason that they thought it best to hold back the children either for their safety or for their interruption or their encouragement of others. The parents on the other hand must have felt a let down, perhaps understanding but, still dejected. It is one form of worship to come to Jesus as an adult. It is another to encourage your children to do what you perhaps would be too shy to do yourself, actually go up to be touched. It shows an understanding of Jesus on these parent's part. The children themselves may not understand what is going on and all the oddity and controversy surrounding it. They are much more inquisitive and experiential. No doubt they sense that this man is a man of importance, He garners an interesting crowd, but, He also seems unusually friendly and approachable. That someone would wish to hold me off from Him makes me want to meet Him all the more. Perhaps I have to step around people and make my way through the tight corridors of stationary bodies but, He beacons me. And as I am touched, and my sister, and friends there with me, He speaks as if this the way all the town folk should be, brave enough to meet Him, calm enough to enjoy His gentle hand, joyful enough to look back on my parents and acknowledge that they put me up to something I genuinely enjoy. I will remember this man as the friendly important stranger I met. The faith of our Lord is that men and women of all ages can adopt the heart of a child. It is possible. The crowds grinding at Him would be a whole lot different if they were filled with truth and joy seeking adventurers. They would be different to Him and different to each other. For one thing they would allow themselves to be touched, some deeply, to the point of being reverent.


FaithOfJesus
Found: June14 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@Mark:11:12-19 DEN OF THIEVES - Was the Temple in Jerusalem really as bad off as Jesus said or was He trying to making a bigger point? My guess is that it is far worse, that the Temple courts were just the most easily identifiable manifestation to the public of the darkness that dwelt within. He knows that like the fig tree what little fruit it does bare is not given to Him and is rotten to the core not of His liking; at this point He is just finished with it. Actions like these have targeted messages higher up. If this is the second temple event of this sort the message would be that "you've had time to think this through, we are back where we left off, now what are you going to do?". Notice that it is Jesus performing the action, He is not delegating to His disciples and not encouraging His crowd or other revolutionaries to do likewise. This is between Him and those with the power to make the decisions. Theoretically they have the choice to reform their Temple system or to try to destroy Jesus. Actually however, their choice has long been made, Jesus is just calling them to make it. The faith of our Lord knows of a time to calmly teach and instruct, convey and convince, but, also a time to curse fruitless fig trees and over turn money grubbing exchange tables forcing others to act upon the decisions that they've already made. It is not ever business as normal either way. People are astonished at His doctrine because His doctrine moves forward unafraid and unimpressed by fraudulent abusive power and principality; even in the den of thieves.


FaithOfJesus
Found: July15 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@Luke:2:8-20 AS IT WAS TOLD THEM - Did anyone follow up on Luke's proposition that there were Shepherds in/around Bethlehem that could attest to this event or people that knew of these shepherds these many years later? The Apostles seem to know of them or else they would have stopped Luke from making such unsubstantiated claims. These four canonized gospels are almost dares or challenges for others/critics to attempt to disprove the facts as depicted, as there are just so many examinable points put forth. Did the Sanhedrin of 45-70 AD make any effort for instances to investigate/rebut these testimonies; and if not then why not? Could they be refuted? The faith of our Lord is putting this all detail out on the line. His story is largely being told by the people around Him describing it; multiple people from multiple vantages. If anybody at that time did make inquiry worthy of debating the evidences provided here it apparently never got long term traction. One would expect that any counter (reliable or not) information would have received much play from Christianity's many immediate/vehement critics.


FaithOfJesus
Found: July20 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@Luke:4:1-13 FORTY DAYS TEMPTED - This passage seems to be one of the oddest passages in the Bible along with the Devil standing before God asking to test Job. The questions that come up are many, some turn bizarre. Satan has had since kjv@Genesis:3:15 to prepare for a moment like this to tempt Eve's promised seed, and at least to this readers eye he never really takes the gloves off with these three efforts. Luke gives us room to interpret that this was forty days of temptation climaxing in these three notable ordeals. Not being privy to the events of those many days we can further interpret that it may have been Satan's plan to wear at Jesus and then at strategic points flash a quick barrage of punches hoping to intimidate Him with a commanding presence, awesome power and authority. The individual events hardly seem like tests plural as much as the overall duration and display. If this is the correct interpretation, we must also be on the constant watch for this multi-front long duration attack. Seldom is Satan outright identifiable. He does typically hide behind others using peer pressure and intimidation, he does hide behind scripture as well. The tactic isn't always to scare us into doing something wrong, it is often to scare us off or scare us into doing nothing at all. Therefore it is advantageous for him to wear at a believer any way and any time he can. Forty days of dull pressure is just as effective as three minutes of fright. Combined together, the impact could be devastating. Note however that Jesus fasted. His chosen preparation was to put His human flesh into submission to His spirit and to feed and strengthen His spirit upon the Word of His Father alone. This He did knowing the the dull test was constant and the barrage was soon to come. The faith of our Lord is in preparation. Not just waiting for events to happen that are then responded to with prayer/fasting but, putting oneself in front at the ready at all times should any sudden assault or need come about.


FaithOfJesus
Found: July22 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@Luke:4:31-37 AUTHORITY - Devils don't just relocate because they are told to no matter how stern and demanding. Exorcism requires an authority above and beyond the authority of the demonic. Authority requires either the threat of or exercise of greater power. When the townsfolk in Capernaum are are amazed and curious as to the authority exerted they are rightly familiar with these basics of this form of spiritual warfare. The question left for the ages however is where did the demons get their authority to posses in the first place? The most likely answer is from the possessed soul themselves or from someone in authority (such as a parent in the case of possessed from birth) either by permission or by blindly opening the door for them. Once authority is surrendered it seems that the authority cannot be resumed on ones own unless an authority above the authority of the demon(s) wins/brings authority back. The demons in this man believe Jesus to have the power to destroy them. Jesus does not destroy them at this time however. We must give this action/allowance the presumption of righteousness as we do not fully understand why why it is in fact righteous. Such a presumption opens up possibilities as to how all things can work for the good of those who love our Lord. The faith of our Lord exercises authority always within the framework/dictates of righteousness, not always by our understanding/self determination of such. By these actions He is by implication suggesting our need to offer Him the presumption of righteousness. It is an additional part of His faith in us.


FaithOfJesus
Found: August30 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@Luke:12:1-12 IN THE MEANTIME - You will recall that Jesus had sent the seventy out in advance to every town that He would Himself go. Now that He is going there are much larger crowds; innumerable onlookers. Add to that the common people are hearing of the clash between Jesus and the religious/political elite and that they (those in power) are publicly now going out of their way to try to bring Jesus down. The crowds are huge. How one could speak and project to such a crowd I do not know unless one focuses more so on the twelve primary disciples. Jesus is repeating several frequent messages from earlier, the leaven of hypocrisy, nothing being hidden, whom to fear, the worth of a soul, the unpardonable sin, the teaching of the Holy Spirit in perilous times. It may be that He wants it recorded what was said so that the pharisees can not manufacture their own tale of what He was saying leading up to His arrest. Jesus is far ahead of their plans by preparing crowds for Himself and the crowds are producing by the spectical undeniable interest all the region over. Luke is making it a point to follow up the dinner time explosion with an immediate continuation of attack regarding the hypocrisy, secretiveness, tactics of intimidation, trail and persecution that will be resorted to by these raveness and wicked combatants identified specifically out from the synagogues/magistrates/powers. Just as they are coming against Him they will soon enough come after His disciples as well. The faith of the Lord has already prepared itself for the battle ahead in many respects, but at the same time is being totally open and observant of the impromptu teachings/directions of the Holy Spirit. It is an interesting logistical parallel observed that we might miss if not keeping in mind in a fuller context. There is now building an innumerable amount of witnesses; whether they remain true will be the interesting thing to watch. It is an especially important time to beware of the leaven for it swells the entire loaf quick.


FaithOfJesus
Found: September6 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@Luke:13:10-17 WHOM SATAN HATH BOUND - Jesus has said that He can only do what He sees the Father do. He sees the Father loosening here. #G630 The word means to send away, divorce, pardon. The woman goes one direction and the infirmity goes the other. The more classical view is that God would be causing infirmity either because she is a sinner or because there is a break down in His genetic codes. If we go back one passage to Jesus' talk regarding catastrophe and mayhem, the context may be that this is what it looks like having a fruitless tree. You will recall in the wilderness for forty years people did not get sick, their clothes did not fray, their shoes even did not wear. When they were in God's complete care infirmity did not appear. As they have removed themselves from God's complete care infirmity abounds more and more. You will recall all the many quotes through the prophets that God has always been willing to heal Israel if they would just keep things straight. Like with the collapse of the towers innocent people may be caught under societies rubble. In fallen societies (from God's view) normal sexual inhibitions lessen, diets change, fears of pain and infirmities and deformities and bad deaths rise and thus odd prescriptions and remedies worsen the situation, medicines and surgeries are mis-prescibed, the entire course of affairs have dire affects upon what was otherwise made to work by God's command. It is an environment dominated by abject fear. Worse yet the door is left wide open for Satan to operate at his will. If God's will is not being followed, whose other will is strong enough? Does this mean that this woman was a devil worshiper? Probably not. Does this mean that she was a sinner? Well we all are. Why are we not all folded over? When so much of God's creation works so well as designed, when it does not these relatively few times (and there is no apparent reason why it shouldn't have) it should be a sign that we have as a society left the door open to another's will. It is not as easy as any one person reaching up and closing that door, it is opened by the whole, it effects the whole, it is closed by the Lord when He sees fit (re-establishes a final closure) for the whole. We also have Israel receiving a double measure sworn from the Lord. God's blessings to us are magnified in them for our observation; so too His curses. Israel was given something Holy to possess: His Commandments, His Covenant, His Name, His Temple, His Seed. Moses warned them of how such blessings would turn to curse should they not fulfill their obligations to that covenant. We today possess a similar (extended) form of that covenant in the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Should we not expect the same double measure or more should we as a group neglect so great a salvation as well? Jesus appears to be walking in an extraordinary time of infirmity and demonic possession. The fruitless tree as a whole is rotted from the core outward. Yet for now, His work was being done on a smaller individual level because that is what He saw the Father as doing. It is not the time yet to remove all sickness because it is not a time yet where we have all come back to HIM. The holiness of His that we hold is yet held by defiled and idle hands. That this miraculous and instantaneous healing was done on Sabbath better states the idleness that prevails week long because of defiled (dead) religious traditions. The faith of our Lord is simply beyond our capacity to understand; our perception of it is too short sighted if not blind. Signs and indications that we should be seeing as messages and proofs are seen rather as God abandoning us. The big picture healing for mankind is not as instantaneous; it has taken several thousand years already to develop. And each one of us (believer and non-believer) are swallowed up in that plan till it comes to full fruition. That it hasn't already is a sign of the size and scope of the problem.


FaithOfJesus
Found: October22 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@Luke:24:50-53 HE BLESSED THEM - Doctor Luke began this exercise as a means of detailing these events to foster certain man Theophilus' certainty in these matters. It is by no means an exhaustive detailing (how could any such work be given the subject matter?), but enough to be most convincing. The letter will become important as the years go on and other stories and fables begin to germinate. This letter along with a few select others will become the standard barrier to keep us grounded to the true faith in the midst of so much other chatter. Work will begin immediately by many to disprove it and disassemble it and detach it. It will be this harsh acidic test throughout the ages that will make it to standout to demand our more consideration. Two things in this passage should begin any examination, that they (those who saw all this) worshiped Him, that they were continually praising and blessing God, which is most likely the point years later where Theophilus first encountered them. Theophilus, like us must first consider why do these people behave in this manner and what/why they believe in this Jesus. The story is laid out so that any person of any intellectual ability can examine it and come to terms with their own beliefs. The Lord did not write these things down Himself as with other so called messiahs but relied upon the testimony of common down to earth men and their life long living and sacrificial reactions to what they had witnessed. Such proves to be a powerful indication of the veracity of said evidences. The faith of our Lord is in men being transformed deeply by His message, so deeply as to desire to testify on His behalf to others, so as to spread such transformation to many more as well. Many will come to know and praise/worship God because of Him.


FaithOfJesus
Found: November29 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@John:12:1-11 AGAINST THE DAY OF MY BURYING - It is ironic that Jesus in large part is being sentenced to death for raising a man from the dead. Name me another such case. Now the reasoning behind the sentence will quickly evolve into more, but at this point the fear is that Jesus is now performing things that have serious internal and external consequence. Lazarus is also marked out (sentenced to death for once being dead). There are many aware of Jesus' whereabouts. They are commanded to report it to the leaders, not many did. They could be held as duplicitous cooperatives (knowing that the dead man raised and the man who raised him were meeting). You can see just how ridiculous the leadership has gotten. Then there is Mary, Martha's sister. We have already spoke of Martha's uncommon faith; it appears that it has rubbed off on to Mary. Mary and Martha had kind of gone back and forth with the lead of obtaining the fullest measure of faith, Mary having been the un-distracted pupil first and Martha recently having accepted the Lord's omnipotence first. Mary now comes forth with nearly a years worth of common wages to pour over her Lord's head, intuitively realizing that He is about to die for mankind's sins. The men folk are not this far along yet as some are swayed (or confused) by Judas' reasoning. They do not yet know Judas as the Lord knows him, nor do they know the road that has been leading him to betrayal. Judas will betray Jesus. He'll be the one to tell Sadducee where Jesus will be at. We suspect that it will also be about the money, but the money may just be the gateway drug to something much more determined. Judas trips up here and crosses Jesus and nearly brings the other men crosswise along with him. Surely he knows that. There is more than just ointment that has been stored up that is about to be broken open and spilled out. There was a prophecy given to the young mother Mary that the Christ child she bore would one day cause her great pain because that He would reveal the hearts of many. See then the hearts revealed. Feel her pain amongst otherwise anticipation and excitement. The day now is soon coming and is already. How much more do you need to see to be convinced? Not enough revelation yet? The faith of our Lord is that none of this trouble is by accident, it is raised by His presence. A son cannot do any of the works of his father in this darkening light without the whole world coming to pieces. And why this? Because of the hearts of man. A hundred billion hearts all with such busyness to do. How crucial this quiet personal moment of sincere personal homage by a long haired woman of such great compound yet simple faith. A moment saved up for against the day of His burying!


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Found: February4 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@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.


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Found: February23 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@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.


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Found: March20 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@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.


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Found: April12 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@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.


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Found: May6 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@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.


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Found: May23 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@Mark:6:14-29 AND THEREFORE - How do you explain Jesus? We see how vulnerable human reasoning in this passage. We have the reasoning King Herod, Herodias, her daughter, and others. Each have their bend. Some rationale is being bent by guilt/fear/drunken enticement/exaggerated commitments/justifying unlawful marriages. Other rationale is being bent by retribution/scheming/manipulation/deceit. Anothers' rationale is bent by the vanity of youth/sexual seduction/promiscuity and either a naivete or collusion of her mother's true intents. Others are bent by misinterpreted scripture or myth. All of this and more works against John and now Jesus. People like to think that they are free to make the right choices, that discernment and reasoning is their particular even inherent strength; it is simply not true. The carnal mind is at enmity against the spiritual, the closest it can come to being right is a counterfeit substitution of what God himself has chosen to reveal. Much of that is hidden inside parables and prophecies and large millennium wide swaths of history so that it can't be counterfeited and so that only true diligent seekers can be brought to it. In our own lives the question must be where is our rationale being bent? What sin or carnal trait is obstructing or altering the course of spiritual insight? What keeps us from true discernment of the facts and road map before us? The faith of our Lord is implied in this passage, implied that He knows what He is up against/what we are up against that He must save us from. When He contrasts light to darkness and groups all of mankind into darkness this constant bend is much of what He is talking about. Worse yet people more love this darkness more than surrendering it to His light. They continue to use the same rationale to make the same decisions and take the same actions with the same insolence and self determination and kill off the things that contradict or counteract their torturous corruptions. Somehow they justify this all as being right vaguely aware if at all of what is actually occurring. AND THEREFORE and with this bend they attempt to explain away Jesus.


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Found: June8 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@Mark:10:13-16 FORBID THEM NOT - It is an encouraging sign of reverence that parents would bring children up to Jesus to be touched. That the disciples were rebuked for holding them back shows me that the event was not staged. Part of their discipleship no doubt was to hold back crowds allowing Jesus more room to operate. There must of have been a reason that they thought it best to hold back the children either for their safety or for their interruption or their encouragement of others. The parents on the other hand must have felt a let down, perhaps understanding but, still dejected. It is one form of worship to come to Jesus as an adult. It is another to encourage your children to do what you perhaps would be too shy to do yourself, actually go up to be touched. It shows an understanding of Jesus on these parent's part. The children themselves may not understand what is going on and all the oddity and controversy surrounding it. They are much more inquisitive and experiential. No doubt they sense that this man is a man of importance, He garners an interesting crowd, but, He also seems unusually friendly and approachable. That someone would wish to hold me off from Him makes me want to meet Him all the more. Perhaps I have to step around people and make my way through the tight corridors of stationary bodies but, He beacons me. And as I am touched, and my sister, and friends there with me, He speaks as if this the way all the town folk should be, brave enough to meet Him, calm enough to enjoy His gentle hand, joyful enough to look back on my parents and acknowledge that they put me up to something I genuinely enjoy. I will remember this man as the friendly important stranger I met. The faith of our Lord is that men and women of all ages can adopt the heart of a child. It is possible. The crowds grinding at Him would be a whole lot different if they were filled with truth and joy seeking adventurers. They would be different to Him and different to each other. For one thing they would allow themselves to be touched, some deeply, to the point of being reverent.


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Found: June14 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@Mark:11:12-19 DEN OF THIEVES - Was the Temple in Jerusalem really as bad off as Jesus said or was He trying to making a bigger point? My guess is that it is far worse, that the Temple courts were just the most easily identifiable manifestation to the public of the darkness that dwelt within. He knows that like the fig tree what little fruit it does bare is not given to Him and is rotten to the core not of His liking; at this point He is just finished with it. Actions like these have targeted messages higher up. If this is the second temple event of this sort the message would be that "you've had time to think this through, we are back where we left off, now what are you going to do?". Notice that it is Jesus performing the action, He is not delegating to His disciples and not encouraging His crowd or other revolutionaries to do likewise. This is between Him and those with the power to make the decisions. Theoretically they have the choice to reform their Temple system or to try to destroy Jesus. Actually however, their choice has long been made, Jesus is just calling them to make it. The faith of our Lord knows of a time to calmly teach and instruct, convey and convince, but, also a time to curse fruitless fig trees and over turn money grubbing exchange tables forcing others to act upon the decisions that they've already made. It is not ever business as normal either way. People are astonished at His doctrine because His doctrine moves forward unafraid and unimpressed by fraudulent abusive power and principality; even in the den of thieves.


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Found: July15 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@Luke:2:8-20 AS IT WAS TOLD THEM - Did anyone follow up on Luke's proposition that there were Shepherds in/around Bethlehem that could attest to this event or people that knew of these shepherds these many years later? The Apostles seem to know of them or else they would have stopped Luke from making such unsubstantiated claims. These four canonized gospels are almost dares or challenges for others/critics to attempt to disprove the facts as depicted, as there are just so many examinable points put forth. Did the Sanhedrin of 45-70 AD make any effort for instances to investigate/rebut these testimonies; and if not then why not? Could they be refuted? The faith of our Lord is putting this all detail out on the line. His story is largely being told by the people around Him describing it; multiple people from multiple vantages. If anybody at that time did make inquiry worthy of debating the evidences provided here it apparently never got long term traction. One would expect that any counter (reliable or not) information would have received much play from Christianity's many immediate/vehement critics.


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Found: July20 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@Luke:4:1-13 FORTY DAYS TEMPTED - This passage seems to be one of the oddest passages in the Bible along with the Devil standing before God asking to test Job. The questions that come up are many, some turn bizarre. Satan has had since kjv@Genesis:3:15 to prepare for a moment like this to tempt Eve's promised seed, and at least to this readers eye he never really takes the gloves off with these three efforts. Luke gives us room to interpret that this was forty days of temptation climaxing in these three notable ordeals. Not being privy to the events of those many days we can further interpret that it may have been Satan's plan to wear at Jesus and then at strategic points flash a quick barrage of punches hoping to intimidate Him with a commanding presence, awesome power and authority. The individual events hardly seem like tests plural as much as the overall duration and display. If this is the correct interpretation, we must also be on the constant watch for this multi-front long duration attack. Seldom is Satan outright identifiable. He does typically hide behind others using peer pressure and intimidation, he does hide behind scripture as well. The tactic isn't always to scare us into doing something wrong, it is often to scare us off or scare us into doing nothing at all. Therefore it is advantageous for him to wear at a believer any way and any time he can. Forty days of dull pressure is just as effective as three minutes of fright. Combined together, the impact could be devastating. Note however that Jesus fasted. His chosen preparation was to put His human flesh into submission to His spirit and to feed and strengthen His spirit upon the Word of His Father alone. This He did knowing the the dull test was constant and the barrage was soon to come. The faith of our Lord is in preparation. Not just waiting for events to happen that are then responded to with prayer/fasting but, putting oneself in front at the ready at all times should any sudden assault or need come about.


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Found: July22 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@Luke:4:31-37 AUTHORITY - Devils don't just relocate because they are told to no matter how stern and demanding. Exorcism requires an authority above and beyond the authority of the demonic. Authority requires either the threat of or exercise of greater power. When the townsfolk in Capernaum are are amazed and curious as to the authority exerted they are rightly familiar with these basics of this form of spiritual warfare. The question left for the ages however is where did the demons get their authority to posses in the first place? The most likely answer is from the possessed soul themselves or from someone in authority (such as a parent in the case of possessed from birth) either by permission or by blindly opening the door for them. Once authority is surrendered it seems that the authority cannot be resumed on ones own unless an authority above the authority of the demon(s) wins/brings authority back. The demons in this man believe Jesus to have the power to destroy them. Jesus does not destroy them at this time however. We must give this action/allowance the presumption of righteousness as we do not fully understand why why it is in fact righteous. Such a presumption opens up possibilities as to how all things can work for the good of those who love our Lord. The faith of our Lord exercises authority always within the framework/dictates of righteousness, not always by our understanding/self determination of such. By these actions He is by implication suggesting our need to offer Him the presumption of righteousness. It is an additional part of His faith in us.


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Found: August30 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@Luke:12:1-12 IN THE MEANTIME - You will recall that Jesus had sent the seventy out in advance to every town that He would Himself go. Now that He is going there are much larger crowds; innumerable onlookers. Add to that the common people are hearing of the clash between Jesus and the religious/political elite and that they (those in power) are publicly now going out of their way to try to bring Jesus down. The crowds are huge. How one could speak and project to such a crowd I do not know unless one focuses more so on the twelve primary disciples. Jesus is repeating several frequent messages from earlier, the leaven of hypocrisy, nothing being hidden, whom to fear, the worth of a soul, the unpardonable sin, the teaching of the Holy Spirit in perilous times. It may be that He wants it recorded what was said so that the pharisees can not manufacture their own tale of what He was saying leading up to His arrest. Jesus is far ahead of their plans by preparing crowds for Himself and the crowds are producing by the spectical undeniable interest all the region over. Luke is making it a point to follow up the dinner time explosion with an immediate continuation of attack regarding the hypocrisy, secretiveness, tactics of intimidation, trail and persecution that will be resorted to by these raveness and wicked combatants identified specifically out from the synagogues/magistrates/powers. Just as they are coming against Him they will soon enough come after His disciples as well. The faith of the Lord has already prepared itself for the battle ahead in many respects, but at the same time is being totally open and observant of the impromptu teachings/directions of the Holy Spirit. It is an interesting logistical parallel observed that we might miss if not keeping in mind in a fuller context. There is now building an innumerable amount of witnesses; whether they remain true will be the interesting thing to watch. It is an especially important time to beware of the leaven for it swells the entire loaf quick.


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Found: September6 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@Luke:13:10-17 WHOM SATAN HATH BOUND - Jesus has said that He can only do what He sees the Father do. He sees the Father loosening here. #G630 The word means to send away, divorce, pardon. The woman goes one direction and the infirmity goes the other. The more classical view is that God would be causing infirmity either because she is a sinner or because there is a break down in His genetic codes. If we go back one passage to Jesus' talk regarding catastrophe and mayhem, the context may be that this is what it looks like having a fruitless tree. You will recall in the wilderness for forty years people did not get sick, their clothes did not fray, their shoes even did not wear. When they were in God's complete care infirmity did not appear. As they have removed themselves from God's complete care infirmity abounds more and more. You will recall all the many quotes through the prophets that God has always been willing to heal Israel if they would just keep things straight. Like with the collapse of the towers innocent people may be caught under societies rubble. In fallen societies (from God's view) normal sexual inhibitions lessen, diets change, fears of pain and infirmities and deformities and bad deaths rise and thus odd prescriptions and remedies worsen the situation, medicines and surgeries are mis-prescibed, the entire course of affairs have dire affects upon what was otherwise made to work by God's command. It is an environment dominated by abject fear. Worse yet the door is left wide open for Satan to operate at his will. If God's will is not being followed, whose other will is strong enough? Does this mean that this woman was a devil worshiper? Probably not. Does this mean that she was a sinner? Well we all are. Why are we not all folded over? When so much of God's creation works so well as designed, when it does not these relatively few times (and there is no apparent reason why it shouldn't have) it should be a sign that we have as a society left the door open to another's will. It is not as easy as any one person reaching up and closing that door, it is opened by the whole, it effects the whole, it is closed by the Lord when He sees fit (re-establishes a final closure) for the whole. We also have Israel receiving a double measure sworn from the Lord. God's blessings to us are magnified in them for our observation; so too His curses. Israel was given something Holy to possess: His Commandments, His Covenant, His Name, His Temple, His Seed. Moses warned them of how such blessings would turn to curse should they not fulfill their obligations to that covenant. We today possess a similar (extended) form of that covenant in the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Should we not expect the same double measure or more should we as a group neglect so great a salvation as well? Jesus appears to be walking in an extraordinary time of infirmity and demonic possession. The fruitless tree as a whole is rotted from the core outward. Yet for now, His work was being done on a smaller individual level because that is what He saw the Father as doing. It is not the time yet to remove all sickness because it is not a time yet where we have all come back to HIM. The holiness of His that we hold is yet held by defiled and idle hands. That this miraculous and instantaneous healing was done on Sabbath better states the idleness that prevails week long because of defiled (dead) religious traditions. The faith of our Lord is simply beyond our capacity to understand; our perception of it is too short sighted if not blind. Signs and indications that we should be seeing as messages and proofs are seen rather as God abandoning us. The big picture healing for mankind is not as instantaneous; it has taken several thousand years already to develop. And each one of us (believer and non-believer) are swallowed up in that plan till it comes to full fruition. That it hasn't already is a sign of the size and scope of the problem.


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Found: October22 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@Luke:24:50-53 HE BLESSED THEM - Doctor Luke began this exercise as a means of detailing these events to foster certain man Theophilus' certainty in these matters. It is by no means an exhaustive detailing (how could any such work be given the subject matter?), but enough to be most convincing. The letter will become important as the years go on and other stories and fables begin to germinate. This letter along with a few select others will become the standard barrier to keep us grounded to the true faith in the midst of so much other chatter. Work will begin immediately by many to disprove it and disassemble it and detach it. It will be this harsh acidic test throughout the ages that will make it to standout to demand our more consideration. Two things in this passage should begin any examination, that they (those who saw all this) worshiped Him, that they were continually praising and blessing God, which is most likely the point years later where Theophilus first encountered them. Theophilus, like us must first consider why do these people behave in this manner and what/why they believe in this Jesus. The story is laid out so that any person of any intellectual ability can examine it and come to terms with their own beliefs. The Lord did not write these things down Himself as with other so called messiahs but relied upon the testimony of common down to earth men and their life long living and sacrificial reactions to what they had witnessed. Such proves to be a powerful indication of the veracity of said evidences. The faith of our Lord is in men being transformed deeply by His message, so deeply as to desire to testify on His behalf to others, so as to spread such transformation to many more as well. Many will come to know and praise/worship God because of Him.


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Found: November29 @ @ RandyP comments: devotion:FaithOfJesus kjv@John:12:1-11 AGAINST THE DAY OF MY BURYING - It is ironic that Jesus in large part is being sentenced to death for raising a man from the dead. Name me another such case. Now the reasoning behind the sentence will quickly evolve into more, but at this point the fear is that Jesus is now performing things that have serious internal and external consequence. Lazarus is also marked out (sentenced to death for once being dead). There are many aware of Jesus' whereabouts. They are commanded to report it to the leaders, not many did. They could be held as duplicitous cooperatives (knowing that the dead man raised and the man who raised him were meeting). You can see just how ridiculous the leadership has gotten. Then there is Mary, Martha's sister. We have already spoke of Martha's uncommon faith; it appears that it has rubbed off on to Mary. Mary and Martha had kind of gone back and forth with the lead of obtaining the fullest measure of faith, Mary having been the un-distracted pupil first and Martha recently having accepted the Lord's omnipotence first. Mary now comes forth with nearly a years worth of common wages to pour over her Lord's head, intuitively realizing that He is about to die for mankind's sins. The men folk are not this far along yet as some are swayed (or confused) by Judas' reasoning. They do not yet know Judas as the Lord knows him, nor do they know the road that has been leading him to betrayal. Judas will betray Jesus. He'll be the one to tell Sadducee where Jesus will be at. We suspect that it will also be about the money, but the money may just be the gateway drug to something much more determined. Judas trips up here and crosses Jesus and nearly brings the other men crosswise along with him. Surely he knows that. There is more than just ointment that has been stored up that is about to be broken open and spilled out. There was a prophecy given to the young mother Mary that the Christ child she bore would one day cause her great pain because that He would reveal the hearts of many. See then the hearts revealed. Feel her pain amongst otherwise anticipation and excitement. The day now is soon coming and is already. How much more do you need to see to be convinced? Not enough revelation yet? The faith of our Lord is that none of this trouble is by accident, it is raised by His presence. A son cannot do any of the works of his father in this darkening light without the whole world coming to pieces. And why this? Because of the hearts of man. A hundred billion hearts all with such busyness to do. How crucial this quiet personal moment of sincere personal homage by a long haired woman of such great compound yet simple faith. A moment saved up for against the day of His burying!