12.5 BSF Matthew Week 12, Day 5

Today’s Scriptures

My Daily Journal:

Now we are getting somewhere.  The pharisees and religious leaders recognize that Jesus has super-natural power.  Literally.  Natural power is power related to nature, to the physical world.  But they have taken a huge step forward and proclaimed that Jesus has power that is greater than that.  It is from out-of-the world,  super-natural, it is from the spirit world.

There are only two possible sources for the power: heaven or hell.  Having acknowledged that Jesus was more than man, they then had to decide from where He and His power originates.

They chose wrong.  All of scripture, every prophecy, every law, every sacrifice, every word that they studied and taught every day pointed to and was being fulfilled in this man Jesus.  While they had dedicated their life to this teaching – they wanted more.  They weren’t satisfied with the relationship God had provided, they wanted something else.  They wanted to commit adultery against the scripture.

Jesus spoke to them very clearly.  He said the only sign they would receive was one from scripture.  He said, you have correctly deduced the situation – heaven or hell.  But, since hell and the devil makes no sense and can be eliminated, then you must acknowledge Jesus is from Heaven.  To not do so is to choose hell themselves.

Do you acknowledge that Jesus was more than a man?  If so, He is super-natural and every sign, every word, every prophecy tells which uniform he wears: a white robe dipped in blood and emblazoned with the name King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

My Answers:

His power and authority over demons

Prince of this world (John 12:31) will be driven out also John 14:30.  Baal-zebub 2 Kings 1 Philistine god, Satan, the adversary, devil (James 4:7), the god of this age (2 Cor 4:).  This house is the earth

The H/S teaches and convicts me of my sin.  If I had rejected the H/S fully, then I would not face such warning or conviction, but instead I would appoint myself as judge and judge my sin to be right and acceptable

I use too few words that proclaim the glory of Christ.  I miss opportunities to have serious engagement by joking.

Every sign and prophecy of the old testament pointed to Christ and was being fulfilled, in their presence, by Him.  But they wanted something outside of all of those teachings, some other sign

The sign of Jonah.  Jesus’ death and resurrection

We are not to be empty shells.  The goal of salvation is not to empty us of evil and impurity but to fill us with the Word and the power of the Holy Spirit.

In love and giving to brothers and sisters in Christ.  In coming alongside missionaries and pastors and teachers.  By walking that road myself and with my family

12.4 BSF Matthew Week 4, Day 4

Today’s Scriptures

My Daily Journal:

Whats and whys are related but not the same.  Our bodies are always working.  Our heart is pumping.  Our muscles are flexing.  We breath and think.

The bible tells us that we were designed to rest.  That doesn’t mean sleep or leisure.  This story is aligned with the call to all who are weary to find rest in Christ.  We are called to work Christ and we are called to rest in Him.

This is something we need and it is something that brings honor to Jesus.  That’s the what.

But it also means more than just showing up for the rest day.  If you are invited to a family gathering and your job is to bring the mashed potatoes, you don’t show up with a bag of potatoes from the store and, in the middle of the party, begin peeling them.

Too often we think of Sunday as our day with God.  Or, even more commonly, our hour with Him at church.  But Jesus calls us to far more.  He says to walk with Him every day.  Work with Him in His harvest fields.  Be yoked with Him in preparation throughout the week.  Then, when our day of rest comes, we are spending it in joy and peace with Him.

The pharisees were like too many of us.  They got mad at their neighbor for mowing their yard on Sunday, but didn’t find the time during the week to spend with that neighbor to share the good news.  They judged others for working on Sunday, but didn’t lay up extra provisions to invite those working with Jesus every day to break bread with them.

A day of rest is not a sacrifice or a burden.  It is not giving up something or doing without.  It is taking on a higher relationship.  It is showing up fully prepared to a really great family gathering with our heavenly family.  Caring for and healing those family members who need help is not work for the Lord, it is joyful and honoring to Him.

My Answers:

Yes, they violated the letter of the law.  They did not take time to prepare to do no work on the Sabbath and thus were picking grain on that day.

Putting your judgment of these men above David?  Above the temple priests?  Something greater than the temple is here.  If understood “mercy not sacrifice” then would not have condemned.  The Son of Man is the Lord of the Sabbath.

It was not distracting or reducing the giving of glory to God by healing this man.

Jesus came to save, not to fight.  There is no need for Him to fight an earthly battle when He is victorious over death

12.3 BSF Matthew Week 12, Day 3

Today’s Scriptures

My Daily Journal:

I slipped in the garage the other day.  I didn’t fall, but, the floor was dusty and my shoes were not giving me the traction I needed for the work I was doing.  I had been out in the yard previously and when I looked at the soles of my shoes they had become caked in dirt, with the grooves filled in so the surface lacked texture.

That is how our heart and soul can become in the muck of this world.  We can become calloused.  We can become caked over.  We can see the word of the gospel but it does not have traction in our lives.

Jesus tells us to achieve true rest first requires real work.  We have to re-cut the furrows, the grooves, in the field of our life.  We have to dig out the weeds and stones and replace them with living seeds.  We have to prepare our heart to receive peace and rest.

But Jesus also tells us that this work is not for us to do alone.  He calls us to yoke to Him.  To ask Him to work along side of us and, when we do, we will find rest in Him.

My Answers:

Chorizin/Bethsaida to Tyre/Sidon (they would have been in sackcloth and ashes, more bearable for them than you; Capernaum to Hades. If miracles in you in Sodom, it would have remained, more bearable for Sodom @ Judgment

They witnessed the promised one.  They saw first hand the miracles.  And, they still chose to turn away from Jesus.

We have the full bible.  We have the full record of Jesus’ saving act, the old and new testaments

Revelation of God is only through God, not to be “deduced” by the logic of man.  While we have free will, that does not usurp God’s control and His desire to show Himself only through Jesus, His son.

a. all who are weary and burdened
b. I will give you rest
c. take my yoke upon you and learn from me
d. To be co-yoked with Christ is to be the apprentice with the master, doing His work with Him.  Through this we find rest.

12.2 BSF Matthew Week 12, Day 2

Today’s Scriptures

My Daily Journal:

Are you sure?  Everything around us screams that there must be a higher power.  Every pagan deity, every “spiritualistic” movement is an attempt by men to put a face or name to this being that we inherently understand exists.

But is Jesus Christ the One?

Asking this question is not a lack of faith, it is an understanding that we cannot rely on our own intellect and senses.  John knew.  John had been present when the voice of God spoke from heaven.  John had been the one who proclaimed Him as the Lamb of God.

Asking for confirmation from Jesus is simply asking Him for clarification and direction in our lives.  When we find ourselves on a path or in a place in life we don’t understand or didn’t foresee, seeking confirmation of the Light of the World is the only way to not be lost.

Jesus could have said, “yes”.  But many men could have (and have) lied and claimed themselves to be something they are not.  Jesus could have said “my actions speak for me”.  But many have tried to claim such things with a “holy lifestyle”.  Instead, Jesus pointed John back to the scriptures.  He used the prophecies that John knew well as comfort to him that Jesus was and is the Lord.

Where do you find confirmation and comfort?  Who do you ask for clarity and direction?  What can we learn from John in taking our questions and needs directly to Christ?

My Answers:

He was expecting a different approach and personality.  He was expecting a conqueror

The blind receive sight, the lame walk, those who have leprosy are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, the good news is proclaimed to the poor

Prayer for peace and letting go of stress and worry – brought me the story of Habakkuk

(29) deaf will hear, blind will see, humble will rejoice, the needy will rejoice
(33) eyes of blind opened, deaf unstopped, lame leap like a deer, mute shout, water gush/streams desert
(61) Lord high and exalted seated on a throne, angels singing praises

All prophets of all time have pointed to the coming of Jesus, the messiah.  John was the last, the one who culminated the prophecy by seeing and proclaiming the arrival of Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God