Wednesday, December 31, 2014

A New Leader

O. T. #430  "A New Leader"
December 31, 2014
Deuteronomy 31-Part 2
And He gave Joshua the son of Nun a charge, and said, Be strong and of a good courage: for thou shalt bring the children of Israel into the land which I sware unto them: and I will be with thee.  (Deuteronomy 31:23)


God does not change, neither does His Word-He never fails nor leaves me. I came through the CAT scan without any problems. The 2 hour drink was even berry tasty. Now I wait a few more days for the result and what the surgeon's plan is. God always has a plan and that's the one I want. He is amazing God and so trustworthy. Thank You God for strength and courage that comes from You.

Sometimes it is hard to accept a new leader. We become accustomed to the old leader and his ways. Perhaps we are skeptical of the new one, waiting for him to prove himself. Maybe we compare the two, unknowingly. But the new leader deserves a chance, especially when he is in God's will. Israel was soon to be in such a situation. Moses' time of departure was coming, so he wanted to prepare the people for the new leader.

Wiersbe's Expository Outlines on the Old Testament tells us about the last four chapters:
These are "transition chapter" as Moses gives his final word to the people he has loved and led for forty years. It is amazing that Moses remained so loyal to his people, for they were guilty of criticizing him, rebelling against him, and lying about him. Moses knew that he himself would not enter Canaan, yet he did everything possible to enable Israel to enter! Of course, Moses was faithful to the Lord (Heb. 3:1-6), and this is why he was so faithful to Israel.

Wiersbe speaks of the new leader (chapter 31), the new song (32), the new blessing (33), and the new home (34).

In chapter 31, we read about the new leader, Joshua:
  1. Moses announced the new leader for the people (verses 1-6), explaining that he would not be able to lead them any longer because of God's judgment. Moses gave the people that wonderful promise of God's victorious presence in verse 6. It's repeated in verse 8, Joshua 1:9, and Hebrews 13:5.
  2. Mosses called Joshua and commissioned him (verse 7-13), laying his hands on him and thereby granting the spiritual power he would need for his great task (34:9).
  3. Moses put a copy of Deuteronomy in the hands of the priests to place in the ark, and to read at the Feast of Tabernacles. He knew only God's Word could make the people the kind of nation God wanted them to be.
  4. God summoned both Moses and Joshua to the tabernacle (verses 14-30) where He told them that the nation would rebel and turn away from the Law. He commissioned both of them to write a "song" (32:44) to be taught to the people.
  5. Moses was not permitted to lead Israel into Canaan for two reasons: He had sinned against God at Meribah (Num. 20:7-13); Deut. 3:23-29); and Canaan is the type of the "rest" we have in Christ, and Moses the lawgiver could never bring rest. Only Joshua, the type of Christ the conqueror, could do that (Heb. 4; verse 8 calls Joshua "Jesus," which is the Greek spelling). (Wiersbe)


Our God has commissioned His children to share His song and Word with others.

For I know thy rebellion, and thy stiff neck; behold, while I am yet alive with you this day, ye have been rebellious against the LORD; and how much more after my death? (verse 27)

Moses was well acquainted with Israel's obstinate ways, even in the most gracious of divine provision.  (MacArthur)

Moses knew that the Israelites, in spite of all they had seen of God's work, were rebellious at heart. They deserved God's punishment, although they often received His mercy instead. We, too, are stubborn and rebellious by nature.  Throughout our lives we struggle with sin. Repentance once a month or once a week is not enough. We must constantly turn from our sins to God and let Him, in His mercy, save us. (Life Application Study Bible

Although we can be a stiff necked and rebellious people like Israel, He disciplines us and bring us back with His loving arms.

Will we agree with God that we sin and ask His forgiveness? He is so patiently waiting for us.


Repent, turn, surrender to God.

Bend that neck in humility.

Sing praises to the Lord all the day long.

Monday, December 29, 2014

I'm Afraid

O. T. #429  "I'm Afraid"
December 30, 2014
Deuteronomy 31
Be strong and of good courage, fear not, or be afraid of them: for the LORD thy God, He it is that doth go with thee; He will not fail thee, nor forsake thee. Deuteronomy 31:6


Here I am, the day before I have a CAT scan. I have to have it so the surgeon sees what needs to be done to make me healthy again. I tell you, friends, I am a little afraid, maybe more than a little, that going without water, crackers for salt, and bananas for potassium for 10 hours. I'm scared it will dehydrate me again, put me back into the hospital, as it did after my colonoscopy. There, I admitted it. I need encouragement today. God has this lesson just for me. Isn't He always on time, meeting our needs? If you are in need today, as I am, read on and we will both find that encouragement we both need, right in this chapter.

Here we read of Moses' final charge. This chapter's content is different from the others in this book. Perhaps, Moses concluded his sermons and moved from the place he was addressing Israel. He had been preaching about the Law, then shifted to personal material involving Moses' retirement and death.

Did you know Moses was 120 years of age at this time? In spite of his age, Moses' eyes were still sharp and his mind was quick (34:7).  Yet, it was time for him to step down as Israel's leader, for the Lord had forbidden Moses to cross over Jordan and go into the land of Canaan (Num. 20:12).
Moses promises that God will:
  • have His presence going before Israel;
  • destroy the nations who were possessing the Promised Land;
  • help Israel to possess the land.
Anyone need to feel God's presence with you in your situation right now? Yes!
Do you have any enemies that need to be destroyed-fear, doubt, discouragement? Check!
Do you need God's help in your daily life so you can live joyful and the extravagant Christian life as you go through trying times? For sure!
Oooh, that is so me!


Our key verse exhorted Israel, and us, to be:
  • strong,
  • of a good courage,
  • fear not,
  • be not afraid of them,
  • for the LORD thy God goes with Israel,
  • He will not let Israel fail,
  • He will not forsake Israel.
The power of the victorious life is in God; and if a person allows God to work through him, he has the promise that He will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.  (Falwell)

Do we need strength to continue through our trials? Are we lacking in courage in troubled times?
Are we fearful of the future? Anyone afraid of what you face tomorrow? Read on for encouragement from God's Word.

So this word nerd looked up some words in this verse.
The Hebrew word for strong means to fasten upon; to seize; courage; encourage; be established; withstand. The same word is used four times in Joshua chapter 1; in 2 Chron. 11:32; Is. 35:4; Dan. 10:19.
Courage means to be alert; be courageous; steadfastly minded; establish, prevail.
Fail means to slaken; feeble; forsake; leave; let alone.
Forsake means loose; relinquish; permit; fail; leave (destitute). 

That's what I need to hear. I am going to fasten onto Jesus during my test (drinking 2 1/2 hours of chalky stuff.) I will keep my mind focused on Scripture and prayer. God will not leave me nor forsake me. He will help me withstand this.
He can do the same for you, too, friends.


...of fear and doubt; trust Jesus.

Fasten onto Jesus when I'm scared.

Let Him establish my faith.

Remember, God will not leave me nor forsake me, leaving me alone to go through this by myself.

He has the power to see me through this. I will trust Him.

He is with me all the way. Give Him glory for His mighty works.

Will You Choose Life or Death?

O. T. #428  "Will You Choose Life or Death?"
December 29, 2014
Deuteronomy 30-Part 2
I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may life. 
 Deuteronomy 30:19


Have you made the choice of believing in Jesus as your Savior? He is the only way to heaven (John 14:6). No one can come to God except through Jesus. That is God's way, His plan. Jesus became our sacrifice for our sins, so we don't have to pay for our sins our self. Such love!! It must be done before your final breath, for then is will be too late, friend. Will you choose life or death?

God doesn't force His will on anyone. Moses challenged Israel to choose life, to obey God, and therefore to continue experiencing His blessings.
In verse 19, we read where God set before Israel life and death, blessing and cursing. Moses was encouraging Israel to choose life, so they and their children may live.

Choose means to try; select; appoint.

Under the Old Covenant:
  •  God expected an Israelite to trust in the atonement made by sacrifice to make him righteous, and to understand that this sacrifice pointed towards a perfect sacrifice God would one day make through the Messiah. This is how a godly Israelite, in the Old Covenant, trusted Jesus the Messiah to save him even before the time of Jesus.
  • Under the terms of the Old Covenant Israel had a choice-life or death, good or evil. It was up to them.
  • Israel would see blessing if they were obedient; if disobedient, they would perish. (Guzik)
Those of us in Jesus Christ do not relate to God on the terms of the Old Covenant, but on the terms of a better covenant. In this New Covenant, my relationship with God isn't based on what I do, but on what Jesus has done on my behalf.

Will you trust in Jesus as your Savior and Messiah before you stand before God?(Luke 11:23; Matt. 16:15) Our eternal destiny is determined by our answer to that question.


What was Israel to do in order to have life?
Verse 20 tells us:
  • love the LORD thy God,
  • listen and obey His voice,
  • cleave, hold fast unto Him;
  • choose life, and regard Him as our life, and our length of days,
  • so they may dwell in the land God promised their fathers.
God is not a part of our life, He is our life. (Guzik)

Life Application Study Bible explains:
God lets us choose whether to follow Him or reject Him. this decision, however, is a life-or-death matter. God wants us to realize this, for He would like us all to choose life. Daily in each new situation, we must affirm and reinforce this commitment.

Choosing life or death was also emphasized by Jesus. The one who believed in Him had the promise of eternal life; while the one who refused to believe faced eternal death (John 3:1-36). Every person faces this same choice.  (MacArthur)

Moses set before Israel the greatest commandment, which was to love God, and also points out that they should continue loving God in the future. Love is still the essential principle in fulfilling the commandment  (6:4-5).

It is our choice-eternal life or eternal death, Jesus or the devil, repentance or pride.


Let go of pride, humbly come to Jesus, asking Him to forgive you of your sins and be your Savior.

Choose life in Jesus, receiving God's blessings.

Share with others Jesus' way to God.

Saturday, December 27, 2014


O. T. #427  "Returns"
December 26, 2014
Deuteronomy 29-30
And shalt return unto the LORD thy God, and shalt obey His voice according to all that I command thee this day, thou and thy children, with all thine heart, and with all thy soul;
Deuteronomy 30:2

"Return to Me, and I will return to you," says the Lord of hosts. Malachi 3:7


Did anyone fight the crowds and make a return the day after Christmas? Perhaps it was the wrong sized gift, an unwanted gift, or an ugly gift that caused it to be returned, exchanged for another. If you stand in long lines to make your returns, think how far you may have drifted away from the Lord. Make today a day of happy returns. Moses was warning Israel a third time, to not drift away from the Lord, but to return to Him.

This was Moses' third call for Israel's commitment to God. God and Israel made a covenant at Mount Sinai, 40 years earlier (Ex. 19-20). God promised to bless the Israelites by making them the nation through whom the rest of the world could know God. In return, the Israelites promised to love and obey God in order to receive physical and spiritual blessings. (Life Application Study Bible)

Then, this covenant was renewed in Moab. Now the Israelites are camped  across the Jordan River from the Promised Land, before they entered. This Palestinian covenant, a call to commitment, was not only for those Hebrews making it, but for those born in future generations, who would suffer the consequences of what they did. (Liberty bible Commentary)

How was Israel to prosper in life? They were to love God with all their heart, soul, and strength (6:4-5) We are to seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness (Matt. 6:33).
Moses cautioned that the day the Hebrews chose to turn from God, a root would be planted that would produce bitter and poisonous fruit (Heb. 12:15). When we decide to do what we know is wrong, we plant an evil seed that begins to grow out of control, eventually yielding a crop of sorrow and pain. but we can prevent those seeds of sin from taking root. If you have done something wrong, confess it to God and others immediately. If the seed never finds fertile soil, its bitter fruit will never ripen.  (Life Application Study Bible)

Do we need to confess and return to the Lord? What better time is there than the present?

Ultimately, because Israel did not keep their part of the covenant, God took them out of the land, using Assyria and Babylon conquered their land and take them away as slaves. Looking on down through time, in 1948, Israel became a nation once again.

 Eventually, Israel will believe in Jesus as the Messiah. Paul state that "... all Israel shall be saved..." (Rom. 11:26). This is the picture of the national salvation of Israel. They will ultimately love the Lord their God with all their heart.  (Liberty Bible Commentary)


 Verse 29 states, The secret things belong unto the LORD our God, but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children for ever, that we may do all the words of this law.

The word secret, used here, means to hide (by covering); be absent; keep close; hide.

Most people use the term secret as an interpretation of the unexplainable blessings of God, it actually refers to the hidden causes which motivate God to punish His people. (Falwell)

That which is revealed included the law with its promises and threats; consequently, that which is hidden can only refer to the specific way in which God will carry out His will in the future, which is revealed in His Word and completed in His great work of salvation, in spite of the apostasy of His people.

Life Application Study Bible says there are some secrets God has chosen not to reveal to us, possibly for the following reasons:
  1. Our finite minds cannot fully understand the infinite aspects of God's nature and the universe (Eccl. 3:11).
  2. Some things are unnecessary for us to know until we are more mature.
  3. God is infinite and all-knowing, and we do not have the capacity to know everything He does.
Through God's Word we know enough about Him to be saved by faith and to serve Him. We must not use the limitation of our knowledge as an excuse to reject His claim on our life. 

There are some answers to "why?" which we will not know until God reveals it to us when we get to heaven. We trust God that He makes no mistakes, for His ways are higher than our ways, including His thoughts are higher than our thoughts. (Is. 55:8-9) He will accomplish His purposes for His glory. So we continue to live by faith, not by sight.
Your will, Your way, today, I pray.


Trust and obey, for there is no other way, to be happy in Jesus, than to trust and obey.

Return to God and repent when I stray away.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

December 25

December 25, 2014


For to us a child is born, to us a Son is given, and the government will be on His shoulders. And He will be called Wonderful counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.  Isaiah 9:6

It is in Jesus Christ, that love came down and walked among His people, lived a perfect life amidst a sinful people, light in a dark world, the perfect sacrifice for sinners, a Risen Savior.

What and who is Jesus to you?
What are you celebrating today?

We are sharing His love with family today, after we read Luke 2.

May His love fall bountifully upon you today, my friends!!


Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Blessings If...

O. T. #426  "Blessings If..."
December 24, 2014
Deuteronomy 28
And all these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if  thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the LORD thy God.  Deuteronomy 28:2 (My emphasis)


Do we prefer blessings over cursings from God? Of course we do. Israel was given the choice, the requirements for blessings through obedience, and results of cursings if they disobeyed Him.

Chapter 28 gives  us a long list of blessings for those who trust and obey. In the terms of the treaty the Lord brought to Israel, the Hebrew  people were promised that everything they did would be blessed and multiplied. they never need to borrow from anyone-if they kept God's laws (verse 1-14).
Because Israel obeyed the voice of God, these blessings would come upon them and overtake them:
  • Israel obeys God; (verse 1-2)
  • in the city and in the country; (verse 3)
  • the fruit of their body, the produce of their ground, increase of their herds, cattle, and flocks; (verse 4)
  • their basket and kneading bowl; (verse 5)
  • when they come in and go out; (verse 6)
  • their enemies who rise against them will be defeated before their face; coming out one way before them and fleeing seven ways; (verse 7)
  • their storehouses would be blessed, as well as all they set their hand to do, and their land which God gave them would be blessed; (verse 8)
  • they will be established as a holy people to God, if Israel keeps the commandments of the LORD and walk in His ways; (verse 9)
  • their nation would be a worldwide witness of God's grace; (verse 10)
  • rain in its season; (verse 12)
What else could they possibly need or want? Yet, we know how it turned out as we read further into Scriptures. Why, oh why, do people turn from loving God when they know what will result?


Back in chapter 27 and into 28,we read a long list of curses on those who disbelieve and disobey God's Word from Mount Ebal.
Cursed is the one who:
  • makes a carved or molded image, work of a craftsman and sets it up in secret; (verse 15)
  • treats his father and mother with contempt; (verse 16)
  • moves his neighbor's landmark; (verse 17)
  • makes the blind to wander off the road; (verse 18)
  • perverts the justice due the stranger, the fatherless, and widow; (verse 19)
  • lies with his father's wife, any kind of animal, his sister, the daughter of his father or mother, with his mother-in-law; (verses 20-23)
  • attacks his neighbor secretly; (verse 24)
  • takes a bribe to slay an innocent person; (verse 25)
  • does not confirm all the words of this law by observing them;(verse 26)
  • a worldwide witness of God's chastening; (verses 45-46)
  • extraordinary plagues; (verse 59)
  • scattered among the peoples, with no rest, nor a resting place for the sole of their feet, as well as a trembling heart, failing eyes, and anguish of soul; (verse 65)
  • fear will terrify their heart because of the sight which they see with their eyes; (verse 67)
  • Israel would return to Egypt never to be seen again, being sold as slaves, but no one will buy you. (verse 68)
[Resource: The Jeremiah Study Bible by Dr. David Jeremiah]

Moses foretold of Israel's being conquered and carried into slavery, first by Assyria (722 B.C.), second by Babylon (586 B.C.), third by Rome (AD 70). Israel did scatter, but returned to its statehood in May 1948.

After all the curses listed, the people said, "Amen!"
Perhaps these need to be read in the public square for all to hear in our generations.

Promises such as these are not repeated in the New Testament. God has vowed to bless His children, but under the New covenant, blessings are more spiritual than physical (Eph. 1:3). So NT believers are told that while they may experience a life of sacrifice and persecution, they will have the grace to be content with food and clothing alone (1Timothy 6:8) and the grace to give away to others what they have been given (2 Cor. 8:9-14). Yet in addition to the grace to give, God will grace His beloved with the ability to enjoy the good and perfect gifts (1 Timothy 6:17). (David Jeremiah)

We can love out the level of godliness which our Father expects. Also, we can experience the spiritual blessings of salvation, peace, victory, comfort, and strength for daily needs, even in times of trouble.


Obey God and His Word, and receive blessings poured out from heaven.

Disobey God and receive those curses and a broken fellowship with our God.

It's our choice.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Curse or Blessing

O. T. #425  "Curse or Blessing"
December 223, 2014
Deuteronomy 27
Curseth be he that...   (Deuteronomy 27:15-26)


Which do we desire-a curse or a blessing? God tells Israel how they can have one or the other.
Personally, I desire the blessings of God upon my life and family. The grace of God gives us blessings, since the Law is a curse that shows us we are sinners.

Here we have a reminder of the blessings and curses. Moses and the elders give commandments to Israel. Verse 9 continues this with the priests and Levites. Israel is commanded to keep the Law.

What were they commanded to do?
Liberty Bible Commentary tells us:
  • When they passed over the Jordan River, Israel was to set up large stones on Mount Ebal, which was the mount of cursings. (Since the Law carried a curse, it is to be expected that the Law was to be written on the mount of cursings.)(verse 2)
  • Moses didn't tell the people how many large stones to set up, but he prescribes that they were to be plastered with a coating of lime or gypsum. This is similar to the custom in Egypt where they covered their walls and buildings with lime, then pained them with figures and hieroglyphics. The temporary coating of lime indicated that the writing of the laws on these large stones was not for posterity, but was to be done as a public announcement. they were told to write the laws very plainly.
  • Moses was commanded to write all the words of this law. It could be interpreted to mean "write the entire book of Deuteronomy."  Others believe it means they were to write the 613  different commandments contained in the Pentateuch. Others believed they were to select the most significant laws and write them as a symbol for the whole Law. (verse 3)
  • After they had written on the stones, God commanded them to build an altar unto the LORD, and construct it with stones. These were to be a different kind of stones, since stones used for sacrifice were to be unhewn stones (Ex. 20:22-25).
  • The picture of the Law and the sacrifice together shows the relationship between law and grace. The Law brought a curse upon man because it revealed his sinfulness. (My emphasis) (Gal. 3:13), but the altar was a symbol of the forgiveness grounded in the mercy of God. By connecting the sacrificial ceremony with the Law, Israel was given a practical demonstration of how it could settle the tension between perfection and redemption. 
Do we follow the directions the Lord gives us? Or do we do things our own way?


In verse 11-14, we read what happened next.
  •  Moses divided the 12 tribes of Israel into two groups, with 6 stationed on the side of Mont Gerazim, facing the valley, and the other 6 stationed on the side of Mount Ebal. The Levites were to stand in the midst of the valley (about 1600 feet across).
  • The Levites read the curses in unison, with all the people responding with amen, which means sure; so be it; truth; faithfulness. The entire nation of Israel was involved in one loud praise service to God. The Levites represented more than just the priest; they included the teachers and guardians of the Law, as well as those who carried the ark of the covenant (Joshua 8:30). 
  • The 6 tribes who read the blessings were from the two wives of Jacob, Rachel and Leah. Those sons had a higher position in the inheritance.
Let us proclaim that we are all sinful people in need of a Savior. Then let us proclaim the blessings of our God.


Turn from my sinful ways and follow the Word of God.

Share with others that we are all sinners in need of a Savior, Jesus Christ.

Tell others of His blessings that I have experienced in my life.

Praise the Savior, Messiah, King Jesus.

Monday, December 22, 2014

You are Special

O.T. #424  "You are Special"
December 22, 2014
Deuteronomy 26-Part 3
But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of Him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.  1 Peter 2:9


Who doesn't like to feel special? We all do, don't we? It is usually the little things that people do for us that make us feel special. It doesn't take anything dramatic or big. I received a few phone calls from people checking on me during this time of my waiting for surgery. I appreciated them.
What makes you feel special? Does your spouse have to take you out for dinner, buy a gift, or just a sweet kiss or words of encouragement make you feel special?
Do we make others feel special? Do we take the time to show and tell them that they are special to us?
Thank you folks for studying God's Word with me on this blog. You have become a special people to me. I hope I can encourage you to keep your faith in Jesus. Always remember, you are special to God. After all, He became a man in order to provide us with salvation.

The MacArthur Bible Commentary thoroughly explains:
The last four verses of the chapter concluded Moses's explanation of the law's stipulations by calling for the total commitment by Israel to the Lord and His commands. These verses can be viewed as the formal ratification of the Sinaitic covenant between the Lord and the second generation of Israel. In terms of this agreement, acknowledging that the Lord is their God, and promising wholehearted obedience plus a desire to listen to God's voice, the Israelites were assured that they were His people and the chosen over all other nations to receive His blessings and the calling to witness to His glory to all the world. (Ex. 19:5,6).

And the LORD hath avouched thee this day to be his peculiar people, as he hath promised thee, and that thou shouldest keep all his commandments: And to make thee high above all nations which he hath made, in praise, and in name, and in honor; and that thou mayest be an holy people unto the Lord thy God, as he hath spoken.  (verses 18-19)

What is God telling Israel?
  • He has declared them to be His peculiar people. Peculiar means  a peculiar treasure, one that is shut up, enclosed as wealth or jewels are; proper; good; special. Israel was to be a special people to God.
  • He promised this long ago to their father Abraham, and continued throughout the generations to this second generation of Israel. God had obligated Himself to be Israel's God.(Ex. 19:5)
  •  He would set them high above all nations, that they should keep His commandments, in praise, name, and honor.
  • So they would be a holy people to the Lord their God.

The word avouched is used in verse 17 as an act on Israel's part. Avouched has several meanings, of which is applicable to Israel-to say, answer, speak, tell.
Then in verse 18, avouched is an act on God's part, meaning call, certify, challenge, charge, declare, demand.

Do we desire to be a peculiar, special people to God?


Israel was to avouch God as their God. They were to promise their wholehearted obedience.
What were they expected to do, according to verse 16 and 17:
  • to keep God's statues and judgments;
  • to keep and do them with all their heart and with all their soul;
  • avouch God as their God;
  • to walk in His ways;
  • to keep His statutes and commandments and His judgments;
  • to hearken to His voice.

When Israel did those things, they would receive God's blessings and witness His glory to all the world. they would be God's praise, honor, and glory. New Testament Christians are reminded that we are a peculiar people and we are to show forth the praises of Him who called us out of darkness into His marvelous light (1 Peter 2:9). Therefore, the sanctification of Israel is similar to the sanctification of Christians in the New Testament.  (Falwell)

Do you want to be a peculiar people to God? I certainly do.


Love God with all my heart and soul.

Avouch God as my God to others. Share His salvation and love.

Study God's Word so I can walk in His ways, not my ways.

Obey His voice.

Friday, December 19, 2014


O. T. #423  "Miracles"
December 19, 2014
Deuteronomy 26-Part 2
And the Lord brought us forth out of Egypt with a mighty hand, and with an outstretched arm, and with great terribleness, and with signs, and with wonders. Deut. 26:8


Are you needing a miracle this year? Do you live in a troubling time, with a disease, with financial lows, with family problems? I know who can help us. Jesus performed many miracles while He walked upon the earth. He looked for the person's faith in Him. Do you have faith in Jesus to give you a miracle this Christmas season? He was the miracle, is our miracle, and will be our miracle. Are we looking for one, with anticipation? If He so chooses, He is able to perform a miracle for us. Only God can perform miracles.

Webster's Dictionary defines miracle as a wonder; marvel; an extraordinary event manifesting divine intervention in human affairs.

If man can duplicate a miracle, then it is not a miracle, since only God can perform a miracle. (Roger Robins)

Verses 5-11, we read about Israel's patriarch Jacob.

The MacArthur Bible Commentary gives us these details:

 He was the "wandering Syrian." Jacob was each Israelite's father or ancestor. When Jacob fled from his home in Beersheba, he passed through Syria (Aram) to Mesopotamia (Aram-naharaim, genesis 24:10) to live with Laban, his uncle. Returning from there, Jacob was overtaken by Laban after he came through Syria at the Jabbok River, where he not only faced the wrath of Laban, but also that of Esau his brother. Later, the famine in Canaan necessitated his migration to Egypt. when the Israelites became populous and powerful, they were oppressed by the Egyptians, but it was God who enabled them to enter and conquer the land from which the firstfruits were presented before the altar. 
Jacob only had 70 family members that went with him to live in Egypt. Over the course of time, 400 years, as slaves, Israel's population grew to around 2 million.

When an Israelite appeared before God and called himself an Aramaen, it was a confession of his worthlessness and a testimony that he depended upon the grace of God. (Falwell)

Yes, our righteousness is as filthy rags. That is why our soul needs to be clothed in the righteous robe of Jesus' blood when we enter the throne room of a Holy God. We enter prayerfully, surrendered and worthlessness, seeking the grace and mercy of God.


God heard the Israelites' cries, looked upon their affliction, labor, and oppression. How did the Lord bring Israel out of Egypt? Verse 8 tells us, in reference to 4:34, God delivered them with:
  • a mighty hand, (mighty means strong, hard, violent, loud, stiff; hand refers to an open hand, which indicates power, means, direction);
  • an outstretched arm, (outstretched means to stretch or spread out, to bend, to stretch forth)
  • great terribleness, (terribleness refers to a fearful thing or deed; dread; terror)
  • signs, (signs were in the sense of appearing; a signal, as a flag, beacon, monument; evidence; mark)
  • wonders. (wonders referred to a sense of conspicuousness; a miracle
God delivered Israel from the most powerful army in the world at that time. He did it with His strong, open hand, an outstretched arm, which was  to be feared, and evidence of His power, performing a miracle. How awesome our God is!
Israel knew it was their God who delivered them from slavery, setting them free to worship Him and serve Him; to be a new nation that belonged to God. Not only did Israel experience God's power, but the Pharaoh and Egyptians did also. (Exodus 14)

God was going to give Israel a land which flowed with milk and honey, foretold in Exodus 3:17. The land would provide green pastures for the sheep, cattle, and goats, which gave them milk and honey was the sweetness on the biscuit, an added blessing to sweeten their food. Perhaps the honey sweetened their disposition, too.

Reading about the power of God humbles me. Why do I limit Him? His is the same yesterday, today, and forever. god's mighty hand has not weakened. His outstretched arm is long enough to reach my situation. Do I look for evidences of His love and provision as God works in my life? Am I expecting a miracle this year? Am I looking for one?

Do you need a miracle, dear one? I know  who to contact for one-Jesus Christ. He came to earth in a miraculous way (conceived by the Holy Spirit and a virgin girl). Jesus performed many miracles while walking on earth. He lived a sinless life, died on the cross to purchase our salvation. Then, He miraculously rose from the dead, and intercedes for us to the Father. Isn't that a miracle!


Let go of doubts, fears, troubles, and trust Jesus with them.

Believe a miracle is headed my way.

Watch in anticipation.

Thank God for the milk and honey He provides.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Thankful for My Life

O. T. #422  "Thankful for My Life"
December 18, 2014
Deuteronomy 26
And it shall be, when thou art come in unto the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee for an inheritance, and possesses it, and dwellest therein:  (Deuteronomy 26:1)


It's time for me to share what all my Lord God has done for me in the last month. I started having pain in my lower belly, which was sporadic, but intense. I was not able to get into see my family doctor, but saw two different nurse practitioners.They gave me medications, which did not eliminate the pain. Finally, my doctor prescribes Predisone, a steroid. When it helped, but not completely, he gave me double the dosage. I was only able to sleep 3 hours a night and it kept my heart pounding fast constantly, my blood pressure was up, my brain was wired. How was I to rest with all that going on? I didn't for two weeks. All that time, I assumed the problem was a flare up of my Crohn's disease. He got a colonoscopy scheduled right away with my gastroenterologist. That test turned out clear, no inflammation. Well, I still was having pain.

I went home after the test, drank juices and water, and rested. Finally, I insisted that my husband take me to the hospital for an IV, for I knew I was dehydrated and could not replenish my fluids on my own. He did so, and as they pumped those needed fluids into me, they discovered my potassium and sodium were almost depleted. This was due my clean out for the test and I threw up also. I didn't realize how seriously ill I had become until the doctor explained that sodium is needed to keep my heart beating.

So they talked my doctor and he told them to send me over to his hospital, so he could treat me there.  That's what they did, so I had my first ambulance ride. (The EMT was a neighbor of ours, which we didn't know before this time.) I spent the night in the hospital, gaining strength back.
When my doctor came to visit that next morning, I asked him to check me for a hernia and he confirmed that was what was causing my pain. I am so excited and looking forward to having hernia surgery soon. I am grateful that I did not need to have part of my colon cut out. (As of right now, I am waiting for the surgeon's conference and schedule. I would so much like to have it before December ends, since we have met the deductible of our insurance.)

I thank my God for sustaining me through this trying time. He is in control and I yield to His timing. Not only do I celebrate my 13 years of my extended life (almost died after surgery), but I am celebrating my third breath of life, God's sustaining me.
Thank you, friends, for your prayers and patience during this time.
Shall we see what this chapter holds?

We are finishing up the stipulations for life in the New Land of the Israelites. They were included in chapters 12-16. We read of the instructions concerning:
  • the life of worship (12:1-16:17)
  • leadership (16:18-18:22)
  • societal order (19:1-23:14)
  • miscellaneous laws (23:15-25:19)
  • the firstfruits and tithes in the land (26:1-15)
  • affirmation of obedience (26:16-19). (MacArthur)
Moses commanded the people to keep two rituals when they had conquered the Promised Land and began enjoying its produce. these two rituals were the initial firstfruits offering and the first third year special tithe. These special offering were given in order to celebrate Israel's transition from a nomadic existence to a settled agrarian community, made possible by the Lord's blessing. (MacArthur)

Moses commands the people to bring the first fruits of the ground and present them in the Lord at the place of worship as a symbol that they had finally conquered the land. The first fruits were offered yearly on the day after Passover (Lev. 23:10-11).  (Falwell)

The Festival of Firstfruits was a reminder to the people of all God had provided for them. When they arrived in the Promised Land, the people were to recite a confession of faith that would retell the story of their small beginnings in Egypt, their growth into a might nation, and their journey to claim and conquer the land given them by God. (Life Application Study Bible)

Are we praising God for His blessings and gifts that He has bestowed upon us-salvation, family, friends, provisions?
It is a time of praise and rejoicing because of God's goodness and mercy extended to former generations and evidence of divine sustaining grace at that time.


The tithe was collected every third year of Israel's existence in the land of Canaan. Apparently, this tithe was not taken to the central sanctuary, but distributed locally to Levites, immigrants,widows, and orphans. (MacArthur)

Israel existed because of God's grace and indebted to Him for the gift of their land.
What about you? How has the Lord blessed you this year? Will you take time to share with us?


Be thankful for all the gifts God has given.

Share the gift of salvation with others.

Be faithful in my tithing.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014


O. T. #420  "Stripes"
December 16, 2014
Deuteronomy 25-Part 2
Forty stripes he may give him, and not exceed lest, if he should exceed, and beat him above these with many stripes, then thy brother should seem vile unto thee.  (Deut. 25:3)


Liberty Bible Commentary explains the first four verses in this chapter:
Moses recognizes the authority of corporal punishment. The judges of the different towns could pronounce a man "guilty" (Ex. 22:8). For those not counted worthy of death, the punishment was beating. The phrase wicked man be worthy means "son of stripes" and identifies a man liable to be punished. He was to be beaten forty times with the whip; the number forty symbolizing judgment. However, the Law indicated that the guilty could not receive more than forty stripes; so the Jews gave a man forty lashes less one. Paul was beaten by the Jews five times after this manner (2 Cor.11:24).

They accused Jesus of being blasphemous when He said that He was the Son of God. He was whipped with 39 lashes, since it was a crime not punishable by death. Then at His trial, the crowd freed the criminal Barabbas, sending Jesus to the cross in his place.
Luke 22:63-64 tells us they smote Jesus (means strike) and struck Him on the face.

And I get upset whenever someone lashes me with their tongue, only a few times. That is no comparison with what Jesus went through.


What does it take to cause us to turn from following
Paul went through so much as he took a stand for being a follower of Jesus Christ. Yet he fought the good fight and kept the faith to the end-his death. There was laid up for him treasures in heaven.
And so it is with us, dear one. Keep the faith. Stand strong on God's Word. Trust in Him, not our own understanding, acknowledge Him and He will direct our paths. (Prov. 3:5-6)


Turn the other cheek.

Suffer for Jesus by well doing.


O. T. #421 "Honesty"
December 17, 2014
Deuteronomy 25-Part 3
Will the LORD be pleased with thousands of rams, or with ten thousands of rivers of oil? Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? He hath showed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?  (Micah 6:7-8)


Honest and integrity in our business dealings. We want the exact size of material that we are paying for, a full cup of coffee or tea, the fair treatment, full value on our purchase.
We own a tire shop in a nearby town. The company has been in business for 40 years. We have a reputation of being honest with the customer, as well as not tacking on needless added expenses. As a result, we have a good clientele and other businesses use us, also. We are blessed as we strive to honor the Lord Jesus.
Moses made some references to the Jews in being honest in their business dealings. Verses 13-16 touches on it.

Deuteronomy 25:35-36 (Life Application Study Bible) states:
You must not be unfair in measurements of length, weight, or volume. You are to have honest balances, honest weights, an honest dry measure, and an honest liquid measure; I am Yahweh your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt. You must keep all My statues and all My ordinances and do them; I am Yahweh.

How are our dealings in business? Is honest our policy for life?  Do we expect others to be honest with us while we are not honest with them? Or are we honest in all our dealings?


In verses 17-19, Liberty Bible Commentary states:
God commands Israel not to forget Amalek. This nation had attacked the weary, the aged, and the children when Israel passed through its borders. God abhorred this despicable act and commanded Israel to completely blot out Amalek. Egypt typifies the world that God's people were to flee. Amalek typifies the flesh that hinders God's people from leaving this world. Baalam had prophesied that when the scepter would rise out of Israel(referring to the coming of Christ), He would have complete domination (Num. 24:20). Then Amalek would perish forever. In this way the Bible promises that when we receive our glorified bodies, we will no longer have difficulties with the flesh.
In 1 Kings 15, we read of the execution of this command. However, Saul only partially obeyed God by sparing Agag the king and the best of the spoil. That's when the Prophet Samuel confronted Saul with the bleating of the sheep and the lowing of the oxen of the spoils of the Amalekites. Saul tried to justify his disobedience by saying he spared the best of the sheep and oxen to sacrifice unto the LORD.
In 1 Samuel 15:22, Samuel said, Hath the LORD as great delight to burnt offerings and sacrifices as to obeying the voice of the LORD Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice and to hearken than the fat of rams.

Does not God look upon our heart, to our motives,  looking for faith within us, to see if we will obey Him?
Without faith it is impossible to please God. (Hebrews 11:6)

How is our obedience scale?


Remain honest in all business dealings.

Obey God's voice throughout the day as He leads me on this journey of faith.

Do justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with thy God.

*I am waiting for the surgeon's office to call for a consultation about my hernia surgery. Hopefully, it will be before the end of this year, since we have met our deductible on insurance. I'll keep everyone informed when I know anything.
Thank you everyone for keeping me in your prayers. I am so grateful that is all that is causing my pain and not a serious colon issue.
Have a blessed day! (Linda)

Monday, December 15, 2014

Shoe Exchange

O. T. #419  "Shoe Exchanged"
December 15, 2014
Deuteronomy 25, 2014
I know that my Redeemer liveth. (Job 19:25)


Since my foot has always been on the small side, (size 4 1/2-5) my girlfriends did not try mine on, nor did I theirs either.
A simple shoe exchange. I don't return my shoes, for I try them on while in the store. That's all it took for a man's life to be changed forever. Read on to find out the significance and symbolism.

In verses 5-10, Moses explains about the Levirate marriages, according to David Guzik Bible Commentary:
  • In ancient Israel, it was viewed as a tragic thing if a man died without leaving any descendants to carry on his name, and to give his family an inheritance.
  • Therefore, if a man dies and has no son, it was the responsibility of one of his brothers to take the deceased brother's widow as a wife and perform the duty of a husband's brother to her.
  • The first born son she bares would be counted as a son of the deceased brother, not the surviving brother.
  • If brothers of the deceased man refused to take responsibility, they were called to open shame by the widow. The shame was compounded as they would remove his sandal and the widow would spit in his face. 
This is called the law of the kinsman-redeemer, whereas a single surviving brother was to marry his brother's widow.

Kinsman, in Hebrew, means to free, redeem.
It is found in several verses in Isaiah, as well as Job 19:25, where Job says he knows his Redeemer liveth.

Redeemer means to be the next of kin (and as such to buy back a relative's property, to marry his widow, etc.); deliver, purchase; ransom; redeem.

Kinsman-Redeemer. Have you heard of that term before? Looking at the story of Ruth, the Moabitess, we see that her Israelite husband died, and she married another Israelite named Boaz, her deceased husband's closest kinsman. When he applied this law and raised up a son by Ruth, he perpetuated the line of the Messiah. (Ruth 4:17-22)

Liberty bible Commentary has this to say:
Now if a man refused to become the kinsman-redeemer, the widow was to bring him before the town magistrates at the city gate. She was to loose his shoe from his foot, symbolic of the exchange of property. Therefore, exchanging shoes was symbolic of exchanging property. When the man refused to raise up his brother's kin, she took his shoe, which was symbolic of his losing the inheritance. He was thus deprived of a position which he ought to have had via receiving the inheritance of the deceased brother.
What can we gleam from this? Family takes care of family. Often families have conflict within it. Love should rule out above such things so divisions are not made.


Jesus is our Kinsman Redeemer. He purchased our salvation by His death on the cross. Jesus was the perfect sacrifice, which God required for sin. How do we respond to such love?

Isaiah 48:17 says, Thus saith the LORD, thy Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel; I am the LORD thy God which teacheth thee to profit, which leadeth thee by the way that thou shouldest go. 

How grateful we should be that Jesus redeemed us.
I've been redeemed, by the blood of the Lamb!!


Trust and obey my Redeemer.

Love my family and extended family.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Folks, I am sorry for not posting sooner. I had a colonoscopy done Tuesday, with a good report. However, I ended up dehydrating and spent the night in the hospital to replenish my fluids. I am still weak, but recuperating at home. I did find out that I have to have hernia surgery this month . That is the source of my pain, so I am rejoicing it isn't more serious an operation like I had imagined.

So I will try to get back on schedule Friday with our study. I not, then Monday is definite. Please keep me in your prayers, though.

My verse through it all is Philippians 4:13: I can do all things through Christ who strengthen me.

Meanwhile, keep praising the Lord for all His blessing and love.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Pickin' Corn

O. T. #418 "Pickin' Corn"
December 8, 2014
Deuteronomy 24-Part 2
When you are harvesting in your field and you overlook a sheaf, do not go back to get it. Leave it for the alien, the fatherless and the widow, so that the LORD your God may bless you in all the work of your hands.  Deuteronomy 24:19 NIV


Are you hungry? Let's go pick some corn. Nothing like eating an ear of golden, luscious corn in the summer. I used to raise a garden and enjoyed its fruit.
Jesus compassionately took care of His disciples and followers. Not only did He meet their spiritual needs, but He met their physical needs, also. Several times He even whipped up a meal in a flash. Specifically, when the disciples were hungry, they picked corn in a field with Jesus. That was the time when the Pharisees criticized them for working on the Sabbath. (Mark 2:23-28)

How did Jesus answer these guys? The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath. so the Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath.

I wonder if those Pharisees expected the disciples to go hungry all day. Did they ever do so in order to keep the Law and go hungry all day? Pondering.
What about us? Do we get hung up on a law and not have compassion for others in need?


In the rest of this chapter we read of the various and several prohibitions in regard to life.
David Guzik's Bible Commentary on the internet gives us an outline:
  • act swiftly when leprosy breaks out; (verses 8-9)
  • handling a pledge rightly; (10-13)
  • command to pay your workers; (verses 14-15)
  • each shall bear his own sin; (verse 16)
  • a command to be compassionate and fair; (verses 17-18)
  • leave behind some of the harvest for the poor. (verses 19-22)
We must always deal with others remembering how much God has blessed and forgiven us. Farmers were to have a generous heart, and mad the poor to be active and work for their food. It made a way for them to provide for their own needs with dignity.  (Guzik)

Especially during this Christmas season, specifically as the year ends, we have so many opportunities to give to various organization which meet our communities needs. Are we using discernment in which to support? There are even food and clothing pantries who help those in need.
I think our society as wavered the command for the poor to work for their food. They have come to expect a free handout, instead, which is not how God intended it.

An example in the Old Testament is fond in the book of Ruth. She did not expect a free handout for her and her mother in law's food. She went through the fields picking up the gleanings of the grain. (Ruth 1:22).


Share and care live and give.

Show compassion to those in need.

Thank God for meeting my needs.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Marriage vs. Divorce

O. T. #417  "Marriage vs.Divorce"
December 5, 2014
Deuteronomy 24
When a man hath taken a wife, and married her, and it come to pass that she find no favor in he eyes, because she find no favor in his eyes, because he hath found some uncleanness in her: then let him write her a bill of divorcement, and give it in her hand, and send her out of his house.  Deuteronomy 24:1


Well, here we with a common topic, divorce. What family is not touched by divorce? It has become such a common thing in our society, that it is very saddening. The extended family is effected-parents, grandparents, children, not just the two married people involved. Chances are you can figure out my opinion on this subject. My husband and I just celebrated 42 years of marriage. Therefore, I know it is hard to keep our vows faithfully, but it is possible. It takes the Lord Jesus helping us love and forgive each other. We just have to humble ourselves to both God and our spouse.
Moses says it is because of the hardness of our heart that divorce is permitted. Why do we get a hard heart? Why can't we treat each spouse with respect and love like we do others?

So I turned to wise men who wrote Bible commentaries for their insight on this touchy subject.

The MacArthur Bible Commentary has this to say:
This passage does not command, commend, condone, or even suggest divorce. Rather it recognizes that divorce occurs and permits it, but only on restricted grounds. The case presented here is designed to convey the fact that divorce produced defilement. Notice the sequence:
  1. If a man finds an uncleanness (some impurity or something vile)in his wife, other than adultery, which was punished by execution;
  2. If he legally divorces her (although God hates divorce),as in Malachi 2:16 says; He has designed marriage for life, as Genesis 2;24 declares; and He allowed divorce because of hard hearts, as Matthew 19:8 reveals);
  3. If she then marries another man;
  4. If the new husband subsequently does or divorces her; then, that woman could not return to her first husband (verse 4).She is considered defiled.
What constitutes that defilement? Only one thing is possible-she was defiled in the remarriage because there was no ground or the divorce. So when she remarried, she became an adulteress (Matt. 5:31-32) and is thus defiles so that her former husband can't take her back. Illegitimate divorce proliferated adultery.

What's our attitude toward divorce? Is it always an option? Or is it not entering the mind?


Liberty Bible Commentary tells us:
Jesus noted hat Moses did not abolish the tradition "because of the hardness of the (people's) hearts" (Matt. 19:8). The basis for a divorce occurred when a man's wife did not find favor in his sight because he found some uncleanness in her.

The word uncleanness means shame or disgrace.

Its interpretation has been disputed among the rabbis. If the uncleanness was adultery, it would be punished by death (Ex. 20:14). Because its meaning was unclear, the Pharisee tempted Jesus by asking, "Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife for every cause?" (Matt. 19:3) It is though that the meaning was attached to nakedness, disgrace, or some other action having to do with sexual uncleanness which would bring shame upon the family, but was short of adultery.

Loving each other as yourself is what is need in our marriages. Do we think it too convenient to have divorce as an option if things don't work out. Marriage vows are to betaken seriously because they are repeated before God. It is He to whom we are saying our vows and the spouse.


Renew my commitment mad to my husband and God with marriage.

Remain a faithful wife.

Love, forgive, care, respect my husband.

Joyfully live a married life honoring God.

Thursday, December 4, 2014


December 4, 2014
Please excuse me for not posting our Bible study Wednesday and today. I had a death in my family and was gone. Today I am sick, so will check back Friday.

Charles Swindoll said, "I have found great help from two truths God gave me: Nothing touches me that has not passed through the hands of my heavenly Father. Everything I endure is designed to prepare me for serving others more effectively. I needed to be emptied of my own strength so I could discover that His was more than sufficient. If God is taking things away, maybe He's just making room for better things that He wants to give you."

Our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 2 Corinthinans 4:17.

Friends, keep the FAITH, for God is faithful and He grace is all sufficient.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014


O. T. #416 "Appreciation"
December 2, 2014
Deuteronomy 23-Part 2


Be kind and compassionate to one another. (Ephesians 4:32)

This time of year, who doesn't need this reminder? Amidst the busy fast traffic and shoppers with carts out there, everyone's in a hurry and focusing on self.  I need reminding. Who doesn't like to receive a compliment or a thanks of appreciation? So I am trying to be more cheerful and appreciative to others. I am making a special effort to thank those checking me out, conversing with them, appreciating their help. I even thanked the lady at McDonald's for a plain Jane chicken sandwich yesterday (meat and bread only) and told her how good it was. I could tell she doesn't hear that very often. (Complaints are probably what they hear.) Seeing her big smile was worth the extra minute I took me to thank and appreciate her.

Let me challenge you to share appreciation to someone each day. God has blessed us so much in our nation and family.


The rest of the chapter deals with summary laws for Israel and the land. There are 21 listed in 23:15-25:19 to further illustrate the requirements of living under the Sinaitic covenant.
Though  unrelated, these dealt with:
  • keeping the army camp pure, clean, and without idols;
  • instructions against moral, ceremonial, and natural pollution of themselves;  
  • no provisions of shelter for the unclean, whore, or sodomite; 
  • lending brothers money without charging interest;
  • lending to strangers with interest charged was allowed;
  • servants which were abused and wronged by their masters;
  • vows made with the Lord's name added to it obligated the person to pay it;
  • eating grapes and corn in the neighbor's field was permissible to fill one, only no picking extra (not abuse the kindness); farmers produced crops for a profit.

...of grumblings and complainings and be thankful;
...focusing on self and share with others;
...returning evil for evil, but give love instead.