Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Know that I AM God

Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!

           –Psalm 46:10

This familiar verse continues to yield helpful insight about God. It contains a 2-part command and two-fold promise.

Be still and know that I am God is a command. The phrase be still can be understood desist from or stop what you are doing. The command know that I am God can be understood also as a command to recognize I am God. To say it another way, give me the authority and reverence due to me. Know could also be translated understand. To understand that He is God is to know His character, His track record, all that He has done and thereby know that He is sovereign over all things–there is no other God. The LORD our God is one–the only one.

It bears noting I AM, may have been the tetragrammaton, the four-letter Hebrew name for God, Y-H-W-H. This name for God was used by God when Moses asked what name he should use in telling the Israelites about God. It emphasizes His self-existence, that He has no beginning or end which would also contribute to our understanding of His sovereignty.

The next two phrases are promises. I will be exalted among the nations. I will be exalted in the earth! Take it to the bank. God will be exalted among the nations, in the earth if He isn’t already. This again speaks of God’s sovereignty over the whole earth–over everything and everyone.

Know God.

IMG_0529

Fear Not (Part 1)

What does the future hold? . . . What if I get Covid-19? . . . How will I keep my house without a job? . . . What will I do if my spouse gets ill and can’t work? . . . What if my spouse leaves me? . . . What if no one loves me? . . . Who will help me when I get older? . . . How will my child make it in the world? . . . What’s that noise upstairs? . . . Who’s at the door at this time of night?

Big and small, fears are our constant companions. Fear is a universal of the human condition. We all have fears. Perhaps that is why the Bible mentions fear and commands us not to fear so many times.

We can learn some important things from the Bible about fear:

  • There is only One to fear
    In Matthew 10:28, Jesus tells us, “Do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”
  • Fear not because God is with you 
    “Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand. Behold, all those who were incensed against you Shall be ashamed and disgraced; They shall be as nothing, And those who strive with you shall perish. You shall seek them and not find them-Those who contended with you. Those who war against you Shall be as nothing, As a nonexistent thing. For I, the LORD your God, will hold your right hand, Saying to you, ‘Fear not, I will help you.’” Isaiah 41:10-13
  • Don’t fear because God will not leave you
    “Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the LORD your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you.”  Deuteronomy 31:6

Fight fear with the Word of God. It helps to be in the Bible daily, studying and meditating on what God has said. When you are afraid, remind yourself what God has said. If others around you are afraid, remind them of what God has said. Also remember that God cannot lie. What He promises, He will do! He is faithful.

 

If you are looking for additional information and/or materials, please visit our website at RootedinHisWord.org and our Facebook page. 

34857624_201435477340473_855160484356161536_n

Read Haggai Chapter 1                                                                                                                   

1. What is it that God would have us do in order to “consider our ways?” Provide support from scripture where you can.

2. What does God instruct them to do in Haggai 1:8? How will that help them?

3. What do you learn about worship from the following passages?
Psalm 73

Psalm 86

Psalm 96

Psalm 100

Psalm 103

4. What is the result of worship and coming into the presence of God for the believer? Provide support from your own experience and/or scripture.

5. What do you learn from the following passages
2 Kings 22:8-20

Job 42:1-6

Isaiah 6:1-5

6. Copy Haggai 1:8 here. Meditate on this. Record your thoughts and impressions.

7. What does God tell the people through the prophet in Haggai 1:9-11?

8. What is the response of the people and the leaders in Haggai 1:12?

9. What is God’s response in Haggai 1:13?

10. What does God do according to Haggai 1:14-15?

11. What application can you make from Chapter 1 of Haggai?

 

If you are looking for additional information and/or materials, please visit our website at RootedinHisWord.org and our Facebook page. 

34857624_201435477340473_855160484356161536_n

Small

I was nearly made small
surrounded and hemmed in
by small thinking
petty thinking
reactionary
narrow
inside-the-box
the cardboard box
thinking
or the absence of thinking

I felt my thoughts grow small
puny
longing to retaliate
in small-mindedness
crawl into that place
with its sub-basement conduct
underground deportment

after all–that’s what they did
that’s how they treated me
that’s what they would understand
low
lower
base
baser

Into my plans
shot an arrow of light
a spark of wisdom
from above

smallness is their distinctive
small-minded actions
puny-minded words
only confirmed I was one of them

but I didn’t want to be
that’s not who I’m meant to be

The only way to communicate
with the puny mind
is to be big
bigger
big-hearted
gi-normous

put aside every bit of smallness
every shred of puny thinking
be generous to a fault
overlook the wrongs
live above
live big

smallness is not a question of size
smallness is inside
a state of mind
and the state of living that follows

No one can make me small.

by MaryBeth Mullin

Copyright 2020

Psalm 112 – Ahhhh

1 Halleluyah!

How happy is anyone who fears Adonai, who greatly delights in his mitzvot.

2 His descendants will be powerful on earth, a blessed generation of upright people.
3 Wealth and riches are in his house, and his righteousness stands forever.

4 To the upright he shines like a light in the dark, merciful, compassionate and righteous.
5 Things go well with the person who is merciful and lends, who conducts his affairs with fairness;
6 for he will never be moved. The righteous will be remembered forever.

7 He will not be frightened by bad news; he remains steady, trusting in Adonai.
8 His heart is set firm, he will not be afraid, till finally he looks in triumph at his enemies.
9 He distributes freely, he gives to the poor; his righteousness stands forever. His power will be increased honorably.
10 The wicked will be angry when they see this; they will gnash their teeth and waste away,
the desires of the wicked will come to nothing. Complete Jewish Bible

Sometimes I can imagine myself just resting in the words of a psalm, basking in the beauty of what the psalmist is describing. Psalm 112, starting with a wonderful Hallelujah, is a great hammock in which to swing under the shade of a well-watered, leafy tree near a spring in a place like En Gedi or Banias. As you swing back and forth in a steady rhythm and feel the breezes blow over, you can be reminded of all the good that comes to the man or woman who fears G-d and delights in his mitzvot or commands.

  • They will be powerful and they will come into their power in ways that are honorable;
  • They will be bless and righteous in their ways;
  • They will be wealthy and successful and fair;
  • They will be generous with what they acquire, helping those in need;
  • They will be an encouragement to the others who are upright;
  • The wicked will be greatly annoyed by them, but nothing will come of their hatred, plotting or scheming.

It is a beautiful picture–what a wonder this G-d of ours! He is good, good, good! His yoke is easy and His burden is light.

If you are looking for additional information and/or materials, please visit our website at RootedinHisWord.org and our Facebook page. 

34857624_201435477340473_855160484356161536_n

By John Wright Follette (1883-1966)

I am a flame born of celestial fire
I bear a name, Insatiable Desire.
I wear in heart an image all divine,
Past human art, not traced by mortal line.
I hear God call to taste His heavenly power;
I give my all to burn life’s single hour.
So let me burn through fetters that would bind;
Thus will I learn and freedom will I find.
I shall return to Love’s eternal fire,
There shall I burn – a satisfied desire.

follette

Two mountains which figure prominently in the Bible when taken together, represent the character of God. One mountain is characterized by a consuming fire. On that mountain, God displayed His judgment and His holiness. The other mountain is characterized by blood and sacrifice. On that mountain, God displayed His consuming love and mercy.

Mount Sinai

Mount Sinai is the backdrop for Israel’s receipt of the Law. Sinai is where God met Moses and is primarily characterized by fire:

  • Mount Sinai was completely in smoke, because the LORD descended upon it in fire. Its smoke ascended like the smoke of a furnace, and the whole mountain quaked greatly. Exodus 19:18
  • The sight of the glory of the LORD was like a consuming fire on the top of the mountain in the eyes of the children of Israel. Exodus 24:17
  • Then you came near and stood at the foot of the mountain, and the mountain burned with fire to the midst of heaven, with darkness, cloud, and thick darkness. Deuteronomy 4:11
  • The LORD talked with you face to face on the mountain from the midst of the fire. Deuteronomy 5:4
  • Then the LORD delivered to me two tablets of stone written with the finger of God, and on them were all the words which the LORD had spoken to you on the mountain from the midst of the fire in the day of the assembly. Deuteronomy 9:10

Mount Zion

The other mountain is Mount Zion (found within the land given to the tribe of Judah). Mt. Zion was sometimes called The City of David, and descriptions of Mt. Zion paint a very different picture from those describing Mt. Sinai:

  • Remember Your congregation, which You have purchased of old, The tribe of Your inheritance, which You have redeemed-This Mount Zion where You have dwelt. Psalm 74:2
  • But chose the tribe of Judah, Mount Zion which He loved. Psalm 78:68
    Those who trust in the LORD Are like Mount Zion, Which cannot be moved, but abides forever. Psalm 125:1
  • And it shall come to pass That whoever calls on the name of the LORD Shall be saved. For in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be deliverance, As the LORD has said, Among the remnant whom the LORD calls. Joel 2:32
  • Then I looked, and behold, a Lamb standing on Mount Zion, and with Him one hundred and forty-four thousand, having His Father’s name written on their foreheads. Revelation 14:1

Paul makes the case for the two mountains in his letter to the Hebrews:

For you have not come to the mountain that may be touched and that burned with fire, and to blackness and darkness and tempest, and the sound of a trumpet and the voice of words, so that those who heard it begged that the word should not be spoken to them anymore. . . . 

And so terrifying was the sight that Moses said, “I am exceedingly afraid and trembling.”)
But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, to an innumerable company of angels, to the general assembly and church of the firstborn who are registered in heaven, to God the Judge of all, to the spirits of just men made perfect, to Jesus the Mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling that speaks better things than that of Abel. Hebrews 12:18-24

It is the same God of both mountains, so we must keep both mountains in view:

Mount Sinai – where God laid down His law, a place of judgment.
Mount Zion – where God laid down His life, a perfect sacrifice, a place of love, grace, mercy and forgiveness.

Hear, Isra’el! Adonai our God, Adonai is one.

If you are looking for additional information and/or materials, please visit our website at RootedinHisWord.org and our Facebook page. 

34857624_201435477340473_855160484356161536_n

We’re studying through some of the minor prophets. We invite you to study along with us, taking as much as you desire. Please consider the benefit of systematic study of the Bible–how it can improve your life and your relationship with the Creator God, author of the Bible.

Background
1. Who is the author of the book of Haggai?

2. When was this book written?

3. What does the name “Haggai” mean?

Read Haggai Chapter 1
1. What do you learn about Haggai from Haggai 1:1?

2. What do you learn about Haggai from Ezra 5:1?

3. What do you learn about Haggai from Ezra 6:14?

4. When do the events of this chapter take place according to Haggai 1:1?

5. What is the message of God through the prophet in Haggai 1:2-4?

6. What does God say to the people about the consequences of their failure to finish the temple in Haggai 1:6?

7. What does God tell them twice, once in Haggai 1:5 and once in Haggai 1:7? What is God’s meaning? Why does He repeat the phrase?

8. What do you learn from the following verses?
Lamentations 3:40
Romans 14:11-12
2 Corinthians 13:5
Philippians 2:12
James 1:22-25

If you are looking for additional information and/or materials, please visit our website at RootedinHisWord.org and our Facebook page. 

34857624_201435477340473_855160484356161536_n

Shadow and Coolness

By Amy Carmichael, 1867-1951

Shadow and coolness, Lord,
Art Thou to me;
Cloud of my soul, lead, on,
I follow Thee.
What though the hot winds blow,
Fierce heat beats up below?
Fountains of water flow–
Praise, praise to Thee.

Clearness and glory, Lord,
Art Thou to me;
Light of my soul, lead on,
I follow Thee.
All through the moonless night,
Making its darkness bright,
Thou art my Heavenly Light–
Praise, praise to Thee.

Shadow and shine art Thou,
Dear Lord, to me;
Pillar of cloud and fire,
I follow Thee.
What though the way is long,
In Thee my heart is strong,
Thou art my joy, my song–
Praise, praise to Thee.

download

I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service.
– Romans 12:1

 

According to the dictionary, holy  is often associated with God.  It can also mean “sacred” or “endowed or invested with extreme purity or sublimity.

I have heard many preachers explain holy as being “set apart for God” or the idea of being “separate” from the world and/or the things of the world. The difficult part of this is God is usually the one described as holy. How is it that Paul, the author of Romans, would ask me and other believers to present our bodies as holy?

Is it true that God would expect us to be holy? Let’s consider what scripture has to say about this.

  • Just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love   Ephesians 1:4
  • That He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish  Ephesians 5:27
  • For God did not call us to uncleanness, but in holiness.  1 Thessalonians 4:7
  • But as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct,  because it is written, “Be holy, for I am holy.”  1 Peter 1:15-16

The idea of holiness among the children of God is not limited to the New Testament.  The following are Hebrew Bible (Old Testament) references that teach this concept of individual holiness as well:

  • Speak to all the congregation of the children of Israel, and say to them: ‘You shall be holy, for I the LORD your God am holy.  Leviticus 19:2
  • For I am the LORD your God. You shall therefore consecrate yourselves, and you shall be holy; for I am holy.  Leviticus 11:44

Holiness is necessary in order to please God and to approach God, and for that reason we need to diligently seek it in our lives.

If you are looking for additional information and/or materials, please visit our website at RootedinHisWord.org and our Facebook page. 

34857624_201435477340473_855160484356161536_n

Read Habakkuk Chapter 3

1. What does the prophet say God did in Habakkuk 3:12-15? Why?

2. What was the prophet’s reaction according to Habakkuk 3:16?

3. Copy Habakkuk 3:17-19 here meditate on this. Record your thoughts and impressions.

4. What does Job say in Job 13:15?

5. What do Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego tell King Nebuchadnezzar in Daniel 3:16?

6. What do Peter and John tell the council in Acts 5:19-21?

7. What do the people who spoke in questions 14-16 have in common with Habakkuk?

8. Review Habakkuk 2:4 and 3:15-19. How do these verses encourage and/or exhort you?

9. What application can you make to your life from the book of Habakkuk?

If you are looking for additional information and/or materials, please visit our website at RootedinHisWord.org and our Facebook page. 

34857624_201435477340473_855160484356161536_n