David’s Sermon on the Mount

Lord, who may dwell in your sacred tent?
    Who may live on your holy mountain?

The one whose walk is blameless,
    who does what is righteous,
    who speaks the truth from their heart;
whose tongue utters no slander,
    who does no wrong to a neighbor,
    and casts no slur on others;
who despises a vile person
    but honors those who fear the Lord;
who keeps an oath even when it hurts,
    and does not change their mind;
who lends money to the poor without interest;
    who does not accept a bribe against the innocent.

Whoever does these things
    will never be shaken.

These are amazing words. As I read them in The Passion Translation I discovered new meaning. This particular transliteration suggests this as King David’s ‘Sermon on the Mount’. You’ll see below that I see it as instructions for our personal, internal, temple.

Sacred tent and holy mountain refer to God’s sanctuary. Both the church within and the church at large.

When the Holy Spirit dwells within us He begins reshaping us into passionate, enthusiastic, ernest, truth telling, honorable, Believers.

When the Spirit dwells in us we have no desire, actually we consciously push ourselves away from putting others down in any way.  Whether it be insults, lies, gossip, rumors, or any other manner of using our words to harm another we have erected a wall between ourselves and those sins.

Evil of any kind is shunned. Pursuing truth is our passionate determination.

When we say we will do something, WE DO IT!

The promise for following through is we will stand firm in our now and forever.

I’m going to start memorizing this one. There are some powerful words to remember here.

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

All scripture connections are provided by Bible Gateway.

A Living Sacrifice

 

Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. Romans 12:1-2

Our bodies belong to God because He gave His body for us.

We must live a holy life that becomes an acceptable sacrifice to Him.

Conforming to the culture of the world is unexceptable to our Holy God.

God transforms us when we allow Him to change how we think.

God’s will for us is good, pleasing to both Him and those around us. He is perfecting us to approach His Throne in Heaven where we will see His perfect holiness.

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

All scripture connections (in blue) are with Bible Gateway.

Threes

Have you noticed how many 3 word admonishments, commands, and connections there are in the Word?  Starting with the Father, Son, and Spirit before time began and ending with the Holy Threesome when time, as we know it, ends. Three wise men.  Noah had three sons.  Job had three daughters.  Daniel prayed three times a day.  Jesus answered satan’s three temptations by answering with three scriptures.  Mary stayed with Elizabeth for three months.  Three witnessed the transfiguration.  Three heavens. Three crosses.  Jesus rose on the third day… and more.

The number three is significant because it represents completeness.  Not just the single number but all its multiples.  For example there 27 books in the New Testament which is represented mathematically as 3x3x3. God’s completeness is shown in many ways.  Time is shown through yesterday, today, and tomorrow.  God’s people are called, chosen, and elect. Man is body, soul, and spirit.  We serve God in thought, word, and deed.

God’s word is full of three phrase commands.  Take a look at these…

Micah 6:8 NIV tells us to live justly, love mercy, and walk humbly.

In 2 Timothy 1:7(The Message) we are to be bold, loving, and sensible with what (gifts) God has given us.  In the same chapter, we are to not be afraid because the Spirit gives us power, love, and self-discipline.

How about Deuteronomy 30:16 NIV?  For I command you today to love the Lord your God, to walk in obedience to Him, and to keep His commands, decrees and laws; then you will live and increase, and the Lord your God will bless you in the land you are entering to possess.  This one is a command with a promise…

Love. Obey. Keep.  =  Life.  Increase.  Blessings.

And just one more three to complete this post.  The only attribute of God that is mentioned in groups of three in the Word is Holy, Holy, Holy.

Blessings upon blessings to you and yours!

Marie

All quoted verses are connected to BibleGateway.com.  Check it out! It’s a great resource.

Life-Style Evangelism

When Jesus was asked what is the most important commandment of the Law He replied;

  “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”  Matthew 22

Perhaps there is a 3rd Commandment in the New Testament that we sometimes miss because it’s not seen in that light.  I suggest that the following needs to be added.

 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Matthew 28

In the sermon this past Sunday our Asst. Pastor had done some research into how churches thrived and survived the 1918 Spanish Flu Pandemic.  His take away from the research was the Believers of that time practiced Life-Style Evangelism.

Having trained in Life-Style Evangelism several years ago at Ridgecrest, in North Carolina, I learned that sharing Jesus with our friends and neighbors is as important as any other ministry in the local church.  Below is a list of some ways you can practice this very important part of our Christian walk.

Wear a piece of jewelry that invites discussion.

Take a glass of something cold to your neighbor, or the person doing lawn work, or any other outdoor job, in the hot days of summer.

Visit or call someone at home, in a hospital, or nursing home that doesn’t get visitors. (Of course, call ahead, because they may be isolated due to Covid-19.)

Call friends and family to say I’m thinking of you.

Invite the person who is sitting alone (in church, at a restaurant, etc.) to sit with you.

When someone’s name pops into your mind send them an ‘I’m thinking of you’ note.

Follow through when you’ve said you would do something. IF you said I’ll call, then call.

Don’t hesitate to pray anywhere and anytime you’re asked.  Yes, even when you aren’t asked.  If you see the need, pray!

Create a blog and don’t hesitate to tell others about it.

Be sincere in your compliments.  People can always tell when you’re ‘just sayin’ ‘.

Prayer-walk your neighborhood.  Pray for every home even if you don’t know the person living there.

When you get ready to get rid of your Christmas, Birthday, Anniversary cards put them in a box and keep them in your ‘prayer spot’. Take one out each day and pray for that person. Let them know you prayed with a call or a card/note.

Invite someone who may be all alone to family dinners like Christmas, Thanksgiving, Easter…

Take a picture frame that you aren’t using, or buy one for this purpose. Put a sheet of paper (any color) behind the glass. Use a dry-erase marker to write the names of those you want to pray for.  Hang it in a place you see every day.  (Mine is above my home office desk.)

I hope these are helpful in your endeavors to go and tell. If you have any additional ideas comment in the space below.

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

(I use Bible Gateway for Bible-related resources.)

Best Rules For Life Since The 10 Commandments

I certainly can’t say it any better than Eugene Peterson in The Message. Read these words!  Memorize them!  Use them!  It matters!

And so I insist—and God backs me up on this—that there be no going along with the crowd, the empty-headed, mindless crowd. They’ve refused for so long to deal with God that they’ve lost touch not only with God but with reality itself. They can’t think straight anymore. Feeling no pain, they let themselves go in sexual obsession, addicted to every sort of perversion.

 But that’s no life for you. You learned Christ! My assumption is that you have paid careful attention to him, been well instructed in the truth precisely as we have it in Jesus. Since, then, we do not have the excuse of ignorance, everything—and I do mean everything—connected with that old way of life has to go. It’s rotten through and through. Get rid of it! And then take on an entirely new way of life—a God-fashioned life, a life renewed from the inside and working itself into your conduct as God accurately reproduces his character in you.

 What this adds up to, then, is this: no more lies, no more pretense. Tell your neighbor the truth. In Christ’s body we’re all connected to each other, after all. When you lie to others, you end up lying to yourself.

 Go ahead and be angry. You do well to be angry—but don’t use your anger as fuel for revenge. And don’t stay angry. Don’t go to bed angry. Don’t give the Devil that kind of foothold in your life.

 Did you use to make ends meet by stealing? Well, no more! Get an honest job so that you can help others who can’t work.

Watch the way you talk. Let nothing foul or dirty come out of your mouth. Say only what helps, each word a gift.

Don’t grieve God. Don’t break his heart. His Holy Spirit, moving and breathing in you, is the most intimate part of your life, making you fit for himself. Don’t take such a gift for granted.

Make a clean break with all cutting, backbiting, profane talk. Be gentle with one another, sensitive. Forgive one another as quickly and thoroughly as God in Christ forgave you.

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie