Monday, August 31, 2009

The Invasion Isaiah 8

UIsaiah 8:7 "Now therefore, behold, the Lord bringeth up upon them the waters of the river, strong and many, even the king of Assyria, and all his glory; and he shall come up over all his channels, and go over all his banks; v8 And he shall pass through Judah; he shall overflow and go over, he shall reach even to the neck and the stretching out of his wings shall fill the breadth of thy land, O Immanuel." See also Matthew 1:23

This is a continuation of chapter 7 which was headed up as during the reign of Ahaz.

II Kings 16:10 "And king Ahaz went to Damascus to meet Tiglathpileser king of Assyria, and saw an altar that was at Damascus; and king Ahaz sent to Urijah the priest the fashion of the altar, and the patter of it, according to all the workmanship thereof."

Uzziah is now dead. He was a good king. Now we have a bad king and those prophecies about the destruction because of idol worship and other sins is coming to pass.

Isaiah had a child and it was said that before the child could ask for his father or mother, these things would come to pass.

v3 "And I went unto the prophetess; and she conceived, and bare a son, Then said the LORD to me, Call his name Mahershalalhasbaz." which means 'hasting in the spoil.

v4 "For before the child shall have knowledge to cry, My father, and my mother, the riches of Damascus and the spoil of Samaria shall be taken away before the king of Assyria."

See Kings for the details of the invasion.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

The Sign Isaiah 7

Isaiah 7:14 "Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel." See also Matthew 1:23 Luke 1:35

These words were spoken in the days of Ahaz the king of Judah. He was ganged up on, on all sides. Even Israel was against Judah. It is in this conversation that the great prophecy shown above was given. Of course, it was not subscribed to the future by these men for they did not know the mystery that was to come to pass.

Judah was defended with these words by the Lord.

v4 "And say unto him, Take heed, and be quiet; fear not, neither be fainthearted for the two tails of these smoking firebrands, for the fierce anger of Rezin with Syria, and of the son of Remaliah."

v7 "Thus saith the Lord God, It shall not stand, neither shall it come to pass."

The rest of the chapter is notable for this phrase "And it shall come to pass..." or similar phrases. Chapter 8 gives us the birth of a child to Isaiah which clouds the prophecy of verse 14 in this chapter but the prophecy stands.

This would be a good place to go back to the records of the kings and check me out. Doctor Vernon McGee was an excellent Bible teacher and you can see his Isaiah study here.

Proverbs 3:5 "Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding."

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

"Here Am I. Send Me" Isaiah 6

Isaiah 6:8-9 "Also I heard the voice of the LORD, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me. And he said, Go, and tell this people, Hear ye indeed, but understand not; and see ye indeed, but perceive not."

We get a glimpse into heaven itself in this chapter and I must say, it can be a frightening thing when we consider our unworthiness as Isaiah did. I for one, would not want to face Him without the blood of Jesus on my soul.

v1 "In the year that king Uzziah died I saw also the LORD sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train filled the temple v2 Above it stood the seraphims; each one had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly."

The peoples understanding is to be clouded by Isaiah. Here is where I have a little trouble. It is the same feeling I used to get when working algebra. The problem seems impossible then it would come to me somehow.

I believe the understanding of the people was to be darkened so that the previous prophecies and judgments could be fulfilled.

Deuteronomy 28:64 "And the LORD shall scatter thee among all people, from the one end of the earth even unto the other; and there thou shall serve other gods, which neither thou nor thy fathers have known, even wood and stone." Also Neh 1:8

I cannot explain this, although I know the LORD knows the future. I think of the price Jesus paid. He preached to his people and did many miracles, yet it seems only a few believed. He was crucified so that everyone could seek salvation and not just the nation Israel. So, if he had not been rejected by his own people, we would not have had salvation. One thing we must always consider while studying the Bible: when God says a thing will happen, it will happen.

v11 "Then said I, Lord, how long? And he answered, Until the cities be wasted without inhabitant, and the houses without man, and the land be utterly desolate, v12 And the Lord have removed men far away, and there be a great forsaking in the midst of the land."

Then the promise: v13 "But yet in it shall be a tenth, and it shall return..."

So we must remember that this was Isaiah during the time of the carrying away to captivity. We have already studied how they came back and started to rebuild Jerusalem.

I should note that I am not a Bible prophecy expert. I recommend seeing the links I have on the right for much more learned men than myself to get a deeper understand here.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Vineyard Isaiah 5

Isaiah 5:4 "What could have been done more to my vineyard, that I have not done in it? wherefore, when I looked that it should bring forth grapes, brought it forth wild grapes?"

I don't know anything about grapes except that they need a place to grow and some pruning. I have done some gardening and it is very disappointing when the hard work does not produce a good crop. I remember one year on the farm where we raised cotton and corn. It rained a lot that year at just the wrong time and the cotton rotted in the boles. It was a very costly year and one that hurt us financially for years.

It is no wonder, after the way God has cared for Israel and Judah that He is disappointed when they turned out to be wild grapes instead of tame ones. Here we find Israel compared to a vineyard and Judah the plant.

v7 "For the vineyard of the LORD of hosts is the house of Israel, and the men of Judah his pleasant plant: and he looked for judgment, but behold oppression; for righteousness, but behold a cry."

So He asked the question "What could have been done more..."

There is nothing else to do when the plants have gone bad than to rip them out of the ground and start over with good plants. So, Israel went into captivity.

v13 "Therefore, my people are gone into captivity, because they have no knowledge; and their honorable men are famished, and their multitude dried up with thirst."

That was how they ended up, here is how they started:

v2 "And he fenced it and gathered out the stones thereof, and planted it with the choicest vine, and built a tower in the midst of it and also made a winepress therein, and he looked that it should bring forth grapes, and it brought forth wild grapes."

We can see the great disappointment here and even the sadness that judgment must come upon Israel and Judah. Part of the story is in this verse in II Chronicles 28:5 "Wherefore the LORD his God delivered him into the hand of the king of Syria; and they smote him, and carried away a great multitude of them captives, and brought them to Damascus. And he was also delivered into the hand of the king of Israel, who smote him with a great slaughter."

These are the words that Isaiah preached to warn the people to turn from their wicked ways, but they heeded not.

The Woes:

v20 "Woe unto them that call evil good and good evil..."

v21 "Woe unto them that are wise in their own eyes..."

v22 "Woe unto them that are mighty to drink wine..."

In the last part of verse 24 we see the conclusion of the matter "...because they have cast away the law of the LORD of hosts, and despised the word of the Holy One of Israel."

The preaching of Isaiah was to warn Israel to turn but they did not turn. It reminds me of those dedicated preachers of our day who sound the warning to America but does America hear?

Psalm 85:4 "Turn us, O God of our salvation, and cause thine anger toward us to cease."

Thursday, August 20, 2009

That Day Isaiah 4

Isaiah 4:2 "In that day shall the branch of the LORD be beautiful and glorious, and the fruit of the earth shall be excellent and comely for them that are escaped of Israel."

I think the 'escaped' is talking about the judgment of Israel that we have been talking about. For those left, the land will be a good place.

Whether this is after their return from captivity or well into the future (I think the future), it is the result of a cleansing of evildoers.

v4 "And the LORD shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion, and shall have purged the blood of Jerusalem from the midst thereof by the spirit of judgment, and by the spirit of burning."

Some horribly things took place at the height of idol worship in Jerusalem. We get some information in the Kings and Chronicles. There was a time when even the children were sacrificed in the manner of those not of Israel.

Chronicles 33:6 "And he caused his children to pass through the fire in the valley of the son of Hinnom; also he observed times and used enchantments, and used witchcraft, and dealt with a familiar spirit, and with wizards; he wrought much evil in the sight of the LORD, to provoke him to anger, v7 And he set a carved image, the idol which he had made, in the house of God,..."

So, it is difficult to see how anyone could argue against the judgment. It is one thing for blinded eyes to commit such evil but for those who had been taught otherwise for generations, it was cause for judgment.

But in this short chapter, we find hope from Isaiah's writings. "And there shall be a tabernacle for a shadow in the daytime from the heat, and for a place of refuge, and for a covert from storm and from rain."

It has never been my intention to dive deep into the prophecy of these books but since they are mostly prophetic by nature, it is impossible to bypass. I think if we keep in mind that Israel is the centerpiece of the Old Testament and that it points to redemption in the person of Jesus Christ, we will be able to deal with the more difficult passages simply by accepting them. What we don't understand will, no doubt, be explained in later passages.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Sad State for Israel Isaiah 3

Isaiah 3:15 "What mean ye that ye beat my people to pieces, and grind the faces of the poor? saith the LORD God of hosts."

I am not Jewish but as a Christian and student of the Bible I have very strong feelings for Israel. I can see the majesty they once had and the sin that brought them low. Also, I relate it to our own country. Many of the things that happened in Israel to anger God are happening in our own country. I once said to a congregation: 'In the old days, people were ashamed to get caught doing bad things, evil things. Nowadays, if they get caught, they stand up proudly and say "so what". They are no longer ashamed.

v9 "The show of their countenance doth witness against them; and they declare their sin as Sodom, they hide it not. Woe unto their soul! for they have rewarded evil unto themselves."

This chapter seems to be aimed at the leaders who should have led the people in the right way but did not. They have not honored God and cared for the poor.

v1 "For, behold, the Lord, the LORD of hosts, doth take away from Jerusalem and from Judah the stay and the staff, the whole stay of bread, and the whole stay of water."

v2 "The mighty man and the man of war, the judge and the prophet and the prudent and the ancient,"

The leadership is to be taken away out of Judah and Jerusalem. It will be utter disorder and it was. After the people were carried into captivity, the enemy left only a few to care for the vineyards and they were the poorest of the land.

v8 "For Jerusalem is ruined, and Judah is fallen, because their tongue and their doings are against the LORD, to provoke the eyes of his glory."

The propaganda that came out in force a couple of decades ago, in the country, was that our country was not founded on Christian principles by Christian leaders. Many of our leaders were discredited for some deed they did. The promoters of these lies failed to mention that the Bible is so intertwined with the law that every law would have to be rewritten to remove it.

From there, the truth (the Bible) was taken away from children by removing it from schools. Now that generation has raised children, many of whom do not honor God or know nothing of His ways. So it was in Israel, they had even lost the book of laws at one time until it was found by a good king when he cleaned out the house of God.

The rest of the chapter is devoted to a description of a beautiful woman as was Jerusalem but because of sin that beauty left the city. v26 "And her gates shall lament and mourn; and she being desolate shall sit upon the ground."

Once a people loose heart, defeat is not far behind.

Revelation 21:2 "And I John saw the holy city new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband."

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Israel's Future Isaiah 2

Isaiah 2:2 "And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the LORD's house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it."

According to Scofield's reference Bible notes, mountain can mean kingdom which would clarify this passage.

It will be a great disappointment to the ego's of present day nation giants when they are not the center of attention and commerce but rather all nations look to Jerusalem as the center of things. Similar to the days of David and Solomon except the King of Kings will reign there.

v3 "And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths; for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem."

Remember when Jesus was twelve and he was found in the temple talking to the doctors: Luke 2:47 "And all that heard him were astonished, at his understanding and answers."

The promises of the kingdom and the gospel often get me a little confused or at least makes me pay more attention to how a passage applies when I read it. All the promises made to Israel by the LORD will be fulfilled just as all the promises of the gospel will be fulfilled for Christians.

Romans 11:26-28 "And so all Israel shall be saved; as it is written, There shall come out of Zion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob; For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins. As concerning the gospel, they are enemies for your sakes; but as touching the election, they are beloved for the fathers' sakes."

There are many scriptures which describe the Father's tender care of Israel and his love for Israel. See Ezekiel 16:10 "I clothed thee also with embroidered work, and shod thee with badger's skin and I girded thee about with fine linen and I covered thee with silk. I decked thee also with ornaments, and I put bracelets upon thy hands, and a chain on thy neck. v11 and 12 And I put a jewel on thy forehead, and earrings in thine ear, and a beautiful crown upon thine head."

It goes on to say that Israel was carried away by its own beauty and was unfaithful to the one who rescued and cared for her. They turned to another.

v8 "Their land also is full of idols; they worship the work of their own hands, that which their own fingers have made."

Isaiah is a plea for Israel to turn or more specifically Judah and Jerusalem. They did not turn and judgment came.

Although Israel was very stiff necked then, there will be a different day:

v20 "In that day a man shall cast his idols of silver, and his idols of gold, which they made each one for himself to worship, to the moles and to the bats,"

Until that day, judgment is pronounced as we will see in the next chapter as well.

Isaiah 3:13 "The LORD standeth up to plead, and standeth to judge the people."

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Thursday, August 13, 2009

Unfaithful City Isaiah 1

Isaiah 1:21 "How is the faithful city become an harlot! it was full of judgment; righteousness lodged in it; but now murderers."

Here we see how it was in Isaiah's time and some prophecy on how it will be.

v27 "Zion shall be redeemed with judgment, and her converts with righteousness."

If you remember, Zion was the city of David. When he first came to Jerusalem, he did not at first secure the whole city but did take Zion and set up residents. He was not going anywhere. Here the kings are buried and a few honored men.

We can jump back to see what was going on that caused the LORD to send Isaiah.

II Chronicles 34:25 "Because they have forsaken me, and have burned incense unto other gods, that they might provoke me to anger with all the works of their hands, therefore my wrath shall be poured out upon this place, and shall not be quenched."

II Kings 21:3 "For he built up again the high places which Hezekiah his father had destroyed; and he reared up altars for Baal and made a grove, as did Ahab king of Israel; and worshiped all the host of heaven, and served them. v4 And he built altars in the house of the LORD, of which the LORD said, In Jerusalem will I put my name. v6 And he made his son pass through the fire, and observed times, and used enchantments, ..."

They have even lost the book of laws until it was found in Josiah's reign.

Judah, Jerusalem, Israel had all fallen a long way from the days when they promised to serve the one true God. To this day, the glory has not been restored but it will happen when the LORD himself reigns from Jerusalem.

Micah 4:1 "But in the last days it shall come to pass, that the mountain of the house of the LORD shall be established in the top of the mountains, and it shall be exalted above the hills, and people shall flow unto it."

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Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Compared to Sodom - Isaiah 1

Isaiah 1:10 "Hear the word of the LORD, ye rulers of Sodom give ear unto the law of our God, ye people of Gomorrah."

When Isaiah, stepped up and told Judah and Jerusalem that they were like these two cities, it must have made them turn and listen if but for a moment. The story was surely passed down directly from Abraham after his nephew Lot was rescued by the angels.

Ezekiel 16:49 "Behold, this was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom, pride, fullness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy. v50 And they were haughty, and committed abomination before me: therefore I took them away as I saw good."

I believe the daughters referred to those surrounding communities.

Sacrifice without obedience was not acceptable. They were going through the motions of obeying the law but after the ceremonies, it was the same out in their regular life. They were going through the motions at the temple but their heart was not in it and they left off service to the poor and needy and built up themselves.

v11 "To what purpose is the multitude of your sacrifices unto me?..."

v13 "Bring no more vain oblations; ..."

v15 "...I will not hear, your hands are full of blood."

So, if it is not the sacrifices and the motions of worship, then what is the correct thing for Judah and Jerusalem to do.

v16-17 "Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil; Learn to do well, seek judgment, relieve the oppressed, judge the fatherless, plead for the widow."

The Lord has told them what was going to happen to them if they persisted in evil, yet he still reaches out and pleads with them to return to him with their heart.

v18 "Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD; though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow, though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool."

From here the Lord talks of the cleansing process that will go on in Judah.

v25 "And I will turn my hand upon thee, and purely purge away thy dross, and take away all thy tin; v26 I will restore thy judges as at the first, and thy counselors as at the beginning; afterward thou shalt be called The city of righteousness, the faithful city."

This preaching was going on during the reign of the kings. Apparently, the inhabitants did not want to hear it for judgment was carried out.

I Samuel 12:6-7 "And Samuel said unto the people, It is the LORD that advanced Moses and Aaron, and that brought your fathers up out of the land of Egypt. Now therefore stand still, that I may reason with you before the LORD of all the righteous acts of the LORD, which he did to you and to your fathers."

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Sick Nation - Isaiah 1:5

Isaiah 1:5 "Why should ye be stricken any more? ye will revolt more and more; the whole head is sick, and the whole heart faint."

Just about everything has been tried to get the children of Israel to repent and come back to God. They still rebel. The parallel to the discipline of a child is apparent. You know, a spank on the hand, a pop on the back side. Some children are very strong willed and it may take unusual discipline methods for them. Love is unquestioned. It is difficult to watch as a child destroys their own life when doing right would be so much better for them. Such is the case with Israel. Israel is in the wrong thinking mode.

v6 "From the sole of the foot even unto the head there is no soundness in it; but wounds, and bruises, and putrifying sores; they have not been closed, neither bound up, neither molified with ointment."

It is like the LORD is saying, 'Come let me bind up your hurts.' but they would not.

Jeremiah 8:22 "Is there no balm in Gilead; is there no physician there? why then is not the health of the daughter of my people recovered?"

Romans 10:21 referring to Isaiah "But to Israel he saith, All day long, I have stretched forth my hands unto a disobedient and gainsaying people."

It is true that when the king of Babylon offered to let Israel go back to their nation, that many stayed where they were because of financial gain.

v7 "Your country is desolate, your cities are burned with fire: your land, strangers devour it in your presence, and it is desolate, as overthrown by strangers."

It seems that the nation is lost. That blessed and promised nation from which would come the Redeemer has gone to waste. Yet a glimmer of hope is there:

v9 "Except the LORD of hosts had left unto us a very small remnant, we should have been like unto Gomorrah."

It was a dark time for Israel. I have often referred to the promise of Abraham that in him all nations would be blessed. Also, I compared Israel to being a pregnant lady carrying the promise down through the ages until Christ was born. She has eaten the fruits of idols and failed to accept healing but through the remnant, hope still exist.

Isaiah 7:14 "Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel" See also Matt 1:23 and Luke 1:35.

Still, He pleads.

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Monday, August 10, 2009

Starting Isaiah - Isaiah 1

Isaiah 1:1 "The vision of Isaiah the son of Amoz, which he saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem in the days of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, Kings of Judah."

Here in verse one, we find out the time Isaiah lived in. We can see something of his longevity. He served during the reign of four kings.

Numbers 12:6 "And he said, Hear now my words: If there be a prophet among you, I the LORD will make myself known unto him in a vision and will speak unto him in a dream."

The time is after Israel was split into two nations: Judah and Israel. It was after the high point in the kingdom. David has risen to be king and then Solomon followed him and built the great temple. Then there was civil war and the greatness slipped away and they were carried away by idols and other sins.

II Kings 15:1 "In the twenty and seventh year of Jeroboam king of Israel began Azariah son of Amaziah king of Judah to reign."

The purpose is found in the second verse. The LORD's people have sinned. They are reaping the rewards of sin.

v2 "Hear, O heavens, and give ear, O earth: for the LORD hath spoken, I have nourished and brought up children, and they have rebelled against me."

It was no surprise for the children of Israel when they were conquered and most of them carried away. God gave them advance warning of what would happen and gave them prophets to continual warn them of the dangers of rebellion.

v3 "The ox knoweth his owner, and the ass his master's crib; but Israel doth not know, my people doth not consider."

I Kings 9:4-7 "And if thou wilt walk before me, as David thy father walked, in integrity of heart, and in uprightness to do according to all that I have commanded thee and wilt keep my statutes and my judgments: Then I will establish the throne of thy kingdom upon Israel for ever, as I promised to David thy father saying There shall not fail thee a man upon the throne of Israel. But if ye shall at all turn from following me ye or your children and will not keep my commandments and my statutes which I have set before you but go and serve other gods, and worship them. Then will I cut off Israel out of the land which I have given them; and this house, which I have hallowed for my name, will I cast out of my sight; and Israel shall be a proverb and a byword among all people;"

Israel did rebel. The nation was ripped into two parts and ultimately destroyed. As we love our own children and still love them even when they make us angry, so the LORD became angry with Israel.

v4 "Ah sinful nation, a people laden with iniquity, a seed of evildoers, children that are corrupters; they have provoked the Holy One of Israel unto anger, they are gone away backward."

So we begin the book of Isaiah. I expect there will be some difficult passages ahead. The book is historical to us now but it was present day for Isaiah. Also, the book is prophetic in that Isaiah looks forward to redemption and talks of the coming Christ.

So we again quote: II Chronicles 7:14 for it has been said that Israel is God's time clock: v14 "If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land."

We could use some of that in our nation as well.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Poetry of the Bible


Psalms is usually credited to King David although some were written by his chief musician. They are filled with praise and honor toward God. We also find David's appeals to God during his times of trouble.

I Chronicles 25:1 "Moreover David and the captains of the host separated to the service of the sons of Asaph, and of Heman, and of Jeduthun, who should prophesy with harps, with psalteries, and with cymbals; and the number of the workmen according to their service was:" It goes on to name them.

So I think we can conclude that the book of Psalm was a direct result of the instructions of David to sing Praise to the Lord.

They are also historical. You can relate many of the Psalms to events in David's life.

It is said (I have not counted to confirm it) that Psalm 119 is the middle book of the Bible. It is all about the word of God and that in itself is amazing.

Psalm 119:9 "Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word."

For me, Psalm 22,23,24 stand out. We all know of Psalm 23 "The LORD is my shepherd..."
I have long look at the three books as belonging together. Psalm 22 describes the sufferings of Christ. Psalm 24 talks about the king of glory. Psalm 23 deals with the good shepherd and is beautiful. I have thought for some time that if 22 is the suffering and 24 is the glory then 23 must fall in between in someway in regard to Christ's suffering. I like to think that as he prayed in the garden and confirmed his acceptance of the cross that Psalm 23 was the peace he felt inside as it so boldly walked to the mob and declared that He was the one they sought. While they beat him and drove the spikes, he was beside still waters. Anyway, I can see the picture in my mind, although I don't know if any agree. Psalm 23 can be the state of mind for a Christian during suffering and affliction. We must learn to rise above the troubles of this life through our faith and the grace of God.

Psalm 23:4 "Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for thou art with me; they rod and thy staff they comfort me."


King Solomon asked God for wisdom to lead his people. In his writings he imparts some of that wisdom to us. It is filled with practical things often telling young men how to avoid the pitfalls of life.

Ecclesiastes or

The Preacher is a view from man's point-of-view or perhaps the hopelessness of self efforts in the face of eternity and judgment. It is from the natural man and provides us contrast. I must admit that I do not totally understand it and the words 'all is vanity' seems depressing. So, in these pages we can see the helplessness of man apart from redemption and God's salvation plan.

Song of Solomon

Using the purity of marriage and love, a description and even prophecy of the love of Christ and the church in a language that might seem quite blunt in an unspiritual thought and mysterious in some ways. To a spiritual mind it depicts a pure relationship that almost causes one to pull away from the impact it has on the heart.

Song of Solomon 8:6-7 "Set me as a seal upon thine heart, as a seal upon thine arm; for love is strong as death; jealousy is cruel as the grave: the coals thereof are coals of fire, which hath a most vehement flame. Many waters cannot quench love, neither can the floods drown it; if a man would give all the substance of his house for love, it would utterly be contemned. "

I am debating on whether to go through these books now or go on to Isaiah.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Job Repents and is Restored Job 42

Job 42:5-6 "I have heard of thee by the hearing of the ear; but now mine eye seeth thee, Wherefore I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes." See also Romans 10:17

I do not want to breeze over this last chapter for it is the conclusion of the matter.

The devil came to God and the LORD mentioned Job. Satan laid down a challenge that if the hedge were taken away, Job would curse God. Well, the afflictions were upon Job while his friends told him it was because of his wickedness. Job held to his integrity but still there was a lesson for him to learn from all of it. Job was a wise man, a prince, a teacher and a man of standing in the world. He was not equal to or above God. He could not demand of God. He must rely on God's grace just as we do.

Job said it like this: v3 "Who is he that hideth counsel without knowledge? therefor have I uttered that I understood not; things too wonderful for me, which I knew not."

I Peter 2:10 "But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strength, settle you."

That's four things that can come out of affliction: perfection (not sinless perfection but maturity), stablish, strength, settle you. These are all indications of a mature Christian who knows that what ever happens around us or to us, God is still in control and knows all the circumstances and needs that we are not aware of and the ones we are aware of.

The conclusion that I got from all this was that even when Satan buffets us, we may still have something to learn from what happens. Our praise may be weak and we may get beaten down but our faith can stay intact. These are enduring times and joy will come in the morning.

Psalm 30:4-5 "Sing unto the LORD, O ye saints of his, and give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness. For his anger endureth but a moment; in his favor is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning."

After this Job's friends were rebuked and instructed to make appropriate offerings. Then:

v10 "And the LORD turned the captivity of Job, when he prayed for his friends: also the LORD gave Job twice as much as he had before."

v15 "And in all the land were no women found so fair as the daughters of Job: and their father gave them inheritance among their brethren."

v16 "After this lived Job and hundred and forty years, and saw his sons and his sons' sons, even four generations." (140 years)

We have now finished the book of Job. I have often read the book but in this study I discovered the character Elihu who prepared Job to talk with the LORD like John was before Jesus. I learned of the patience of the LORD in dealing with his children even when they get a little full of themselves. I learned that affliction can have some rewards although I do not seek the affliction part. I learned that all must repent and depend on the grace of God and not on our own righteousness.

Psalm 1:6 "For the LORD knoweth the way of the righteous; but the way of the ungodly shall perish."

Job repents.

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Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Leviathan Job 41

Job 41:1 "Canst thou draw out leviathan with an hook? or his tongue with a cord which thou lettest down? Canst thou put an hook into his nose? or bore his jaw through with a thorn?" v2

Here the Bible describes a creature beyond anything I have ever seen alive or in pictures.

I've tried to thing of some creature that would match the description. The dragon in mythical stories is the only one that comes to mind. I know that many legends come from truths.

For me, if the Bible says it is so, then it is so and there was at this time such an amazing creature although his kingdom seems contrary to Bible teachings: v34 "He beholdeth all high things; he is a king over all the children of pride." Of course, we know that pride comes before a fall.

Let's look at some of the description: v10 "None is so fierce that dare stir him up: who then is able to stand before me?" God is saying, if you cannot tame this creature which I made, God is greater that it.

v14 "Who can open the doors of his face? his teeth are terrible round about."

v18 "By his sneezings a light doth shine, and his eyes are like the eyelids of the morning."

v19 "Out of his mouth go burning lamps and sparks of fire leap out, v20 Out of his nostrils goeth smoke, as out of a seething pot or caldron. v21 His breath kindleth coals, and a flame goeth out of his mouth."

v22 "In his neck remaineth strength, and sorrow is turned into joy before him."

I thought this indicated that the creature could influence the emotions of anyone coming near it.

v23 "The flakes of his flesh are joined together; they are firm in themselves; they cannot be moved. v24 His heart is as firm as a stone; yea, as hard as a piece of the nether millstone."

It goes on to describe the uselessness of trying to subdue it.

v30 "Sharp stones are under him; he spreadeth sharp pointed things upon the mire."

v31 "He maketh the deep to boil like a pot; he maketh the sea like a pot of ointment. v32 He maketh a path to shine after him; one would think the deep to be hoary. v33 Upon earth there is not his like, who is made without fear."

That is quite a description. The point is that the LORD has covered many of his creation. Job said he would contend with God. Now, he can see that the LORD is way above him and that humility is appropriate before him.

I think Job may have been aware of this creature since he did not question its existence.

caldron, cauldron: a large kettle

Genesis 1:24 "And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so."

Leviathan used in God's discussion with Job.

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Monday, August 03, 2009

Job's Confession Job 40

Job 40:4 "Behold, I am vile; what shall I answer thee? I will lay mine hand upon my mouth."

Job's confession is in two parts, here in chapter 40 and then in chapter 42:6.

Job is shaking off his robe of self-righteousness before the majesty of Almighty God. Many will be lost because they feel that they do not have to humble themselves before God or trust in HIS plan of salvation.

Luke 18:9-13 "And he (Jesus) spake this parable unto certain which trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others: Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican. The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican. I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess.

And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner. I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for everyone that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted."

So, we have it in the words of the Son of God. We must see that we have a need before we will reach out to the one who can save us.

v9 "Hast thou an arm like God? or canst thou thunder with a voice like him?"

Almost the whole chapter 29 of Psalms is about the voice of God: v4 "The voice of the LORD is powerful; the voice of the LORD is full of majesty.

When Jesus was in the ship with his disciples and a storm came up. The disciples thought they would sink but they called the Master and he had but to speak and the waves calmed.

In the book of Genesis, God had to but speak and what we see was created out of nothing but his words. That word was made flesh and dwelt among us in the person of Jesus Christ. John 1:14.

Here in Job 40 the LORD ask Job some questions and then tells him this:

v14 "Then will I also confess unto thee that thine own right hand can save thee."

Now we know that we cannot save ourselves. Had that been possible, Jesus would not have had to die. It is logical when you think about it. There would be no reason for God to give up his only begotten son to die for our sins if there was another way for us to save ourselves.

v15 "Behold now behemoth, which I made with thee, he eateth grass as an ox."

He goes on to describe this giant beast. In the next chapter a creature called leviathan is described and it is something else!

Job's confession.

Romans 3:10 "As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one;"

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Sunday, August 02, 2009

He Died and Lived to Tell about It

A young man named Josh had what he thought was a good life, going the party circuit, then one rainy evening God got his attention. Last Sunday Morning he told about his experience and how it brought him back to God. Every one should listen to this unrehearsed testimony. It will touch you. Click on the Eleventh Avenue A country church) link and go to Webcast then look for Josh on a Sunday Morning service. Here is the link as well