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from glory to glory…

Feast of Trumpets and the Days of Awe 5

Listen to the sound of the shofar!

It is blown on this day to remind us of the destruction of the Temple and the alarm of war.

O my soul, my soul! I am pained in my very heart! My heart makes a noise in me; I cannot hold my peace, because you have heard, O my soul, the sound of the trumpet, the alarm of war. Destruction upon destruction is cried, for the whole land is plundered. Suddenly my tents are plundered, and my curtains in a moment. How long will I see the standard, and hear the sound of the trumpet?”

–Jeremiah 4:19-20*

The Temple Jeremiah said would be destroyed was rebuilt as promised.  Before the Lord Yeshua was executed, He sounded the alarm of war for those who would reject His fulfilling work of atonement as the Lamb of God…

Therefore, indeed, I send you prophets, wise men, and scribes: some of them you will kill and crucify, and some of them you will scourge in your synagogues and persecute from city to city, that on you may come all the righteous blood shed on the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel to the blood of Zechariah, son of Berechiah, whom you murdered between the temple and the altar. Assuredly, I say to you, all these things will come upon this generation. O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing! See! Your house is left to you desolate; for I say to you, you shall see Me no more till you say, ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord’!”

–Matthew 23:34-39

The Temple Yeshua prophesied would be destroyed has been gone for more than 1900 years. History verifies Yeshua’s words.  Without that Temple, there is no place under the Old Covenant for atonement for anyone–Jew or non-Jew. This means that the war between God and mankind continues unless a man finds reconciliation and peace in the perfect atoning sacrifice of the Lord Yeshua. Without faith in Him, a man is still at war with God. Consider this your alarm…

Are you praying that unbelievers will recognize their Atonement in Yeshua, the Temple not made with human hands? Are you praying forgiveness for those who have disappointed and hurt you?

*NOTE: In the right hand column of my site, there is a link to Bible Gateway, which provides excellent, free, online access to multiple translations of the Bible. There is easy access with search windows to find passages either by a word or phrase or by the Bible reference itself. Enjoy discovering the Word of God online.

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Feast of Trumpets and the Days of Awe 4

Listen to the sound of the shofar!

This day it is blown to remind us of the word of the prophets that was compared to the sound of the shofar.

Again the word of the LORD came to me, saying, Son of man, speak to the children of your people, and say to them: “When I bring the sword upon a land, and the people of the land take a man from their territory and make him their watchman, when he sees the sword coming upon the land, if he blows the trumpet and warns the people, then whoever hears the sound of the trumpet and does not take warning, if the sword comes and takes him away, his blood shall be on his own head. He heard the sound of the trumpet, but did not take warning; his blood shall be upon himself. But he who takes warning will save his life’.”

–Ezekiel 33:1-5*

Now in the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar, Pontius Pilate being governor of Judea, Herod being tetrarch of Galilee, his brother Philip tetrarch of Iturea and the region of Trachonitis, and Lysanias tetrarch of Abilene, while Annas and Caiaphas were high priests, the word of God came to John the son of Zacharias in the wilderness. And he went into all the region around the Jordan, preaching a baptism of repentance for the remission of sins, as it is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet, saying: ‘The voice of one crying in the wilderness: “Prepare the way of the Lord; make His paths straight. Every valley shall be filled And every mountain and hill brought low; the crooked places shall be made straight and the rough ways smooth; and all flesh shall see the  salvation of God’…” John answered, saying to all, ‘I indeed baptize you with water; but One mightier than I is coming, whose sandal strap I am not worthy to loose. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. His winnowing fan is in His hand, and He will thoroughly clean out His threshing floor, and gather the wheat into His barn; but the chaff He will burn with unquenchable fire’.”

–Luke 3:1-6,16-18

How are you responding to the message that judgment is coming?

For I will stretch out My hand against the inhabitants of the land,’ says the LORD to the greatest of them, everyone is given to covetousness; and from the prophet even to the priest, everyone deals falsely. They have also healed the hurt of My people slightly, saying, “Peace, peace!” when there is no peace. Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? No! They were not at all ashamed; nor did they know how to blush. Therefore they shall fall  among those who fall; at the time I punish them, they shall be cast down,’ says the LORD. Thus says the LORD: ‘Stand in the ways and see, and ask for the old paths, where the good way is, and walk in it; then you will find rest for your souls. But they said, “We will not walk in it.” Also, I set watchmen over you, saying, “Listen to the  sound of the trumpet!” But they said, “We will not listen.” Therefore hear, you nations, and know, O  congregation, what is among them. Hear, O earth! Behold, I will certainly bring calamity on this people—the fruit of their thoughts, because they have not heeded My words nor My law, but rejected it’.”

–Jeremiah 6.12-19

One of the messages of the prophets concerned the way the people were treating each other. How are you doing with your behavior toward others in your life?

*NOTE: In the right hand column of my site, there is a link to Bible Gateway, which provides excellent, free, online access to multiple translations of the Bible. There is easy access with search windows to find passages either by a word or phrase or by the Bible reference itself. Enjoy discovering the Word of God online.

AUTUMN’S DESIRE

autumndesirecover-page2

“Be still,” He said, whispering gently to the expectant wood,

The Mighty, Holy Author of all light,

“Cease your leafy labors bearing food.

Let the quiet chill of autumn’s night woo your brilliant beauty to a head.

Delight Me as I fashioned you of old,

Your golden, crimson plumage to behold.”

 

They heard His holy whispers lilting like a hymn, all the verdant leafy columns of the wood,

And yielded, as all nature will attest,

To the Voice of Him whom they understood,

The Master of their seasons of industry and rest,

And surrendered every one, each leaf and limb, to the lullaby of Him who planned of old

That autumn’s light be wreathed in radiant gold.

 

Rejoicing as their foliage flamed in glorious hue, and wond’ring at mankind’s ceaseless, frenzied pace,

They to their Master lifted up their cry,

“Would that men could see You face to face,

And would upon Your Sovereign Will rely,

As they were fashioned to delight all ways in You,  and hear Your call to rest as they behold

The splendor of Your handiwork in autumn’s radiant gold.”

 

“Some men will,” He answered as they cried, “behold My face and love My sov’reign plan as do you,

In your obedience to My voice and My design.

You’ve been created by and for My Son who foreknew

Each frantic, sin-sick soul who sees your golden shine,

And hears My Spirit’s witness that for each He died, upon a tree bearing countless sorrows and untold.

For these His crimson poured, in season, op’ning Heaven’s gold.”

 ©Patricia Stachew, November 2004

Feast of Trumpets and the Days of Awe – 3

 Listen to the sound of the shofar!

It is blown this day to remind us of the coming near of God to establish His covenant with His people. 

‘Behold, the days are coming,’ says the Lord, ‘when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah—not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt, My covenant which they broke, though I was a husband to them,’ says the Lord. ‘But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days,’ says the Lord: ‘I will put My law in their minds, and write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people’.”

–Jeremiah 31:31-33

Compare the descriptions in Exodus 19:14-19 with Revelation 1:7-18:

So Moses went down from the mountain to the people and sanctified the people, and they washed their clothes. And he said to the people, ‘Be ready for the third day; do not come near your wives.’ Then it came to pass on the third day, in the morning, that there were thunderings and lightnings, and a thick cloud on the mountain; and the sound of the trumpet was very loud, so that all the people who were in the camp trembled. And Moses brought the people out of the camp to meet with God, and they stood at the foot of the mountain. Now 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. And when the blast of the trumpet sounded long and became louder and louder, Moses spoke, and God answered him by voice.” 

–Exodus 19:14-19

Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him, even they who pierced Him. And all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him. Even so, Amen. ‘I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End,’ says the Lord, ‘who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.’ I, John, both your brother and companion in the tribulation and kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was on the island that is called Patmos for the word of God and for the testimony of Jesus Christ. I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s Day, and I heard behind me a loud voice, as of a trumpet, saying, ‘I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last,’ and, ‘What you see, write in a book and send it to the seven churches which are in Asia: to Ephesus, to Smyrna, to Pergamos, to Thyatira, to Sardis, to Philadelphia, and to Laodicea.’ Then I turned to see the voice that spoke with me. And having turned I saw seven golden lampstands, and in the midst of the seven lampstands One like the Son of Man, clothed with a garment down to the feet and girded about the chest with a golden band. His head and hair were white like wool, as white as snow, and His eyes like a flame of fire; His feet were like fine brass, as if refined in a furnace, and His voice as the sound of many waters; He had in His right hand seven stars, out of His mouth went a sharp two-edged sword, and His countenance was like the sun shining in its strength. And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as dead. But He laid His right hand on me, saying to me, ‘Do not be afraid; I am the First and the Last. I am He who lives, and was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore. Amen. And I have the keys of Hades and of Death’.” 

–Revelation 1:7-18

Are you expecting the return of a soft-spoken carpenter from Galilee whose appearance commands little respect from people? When He comes to fulfill His covenant, He will not be coming veiled in a carpenter’s body.  Psalm 29 was king David’s response to his knowledge of his Messiah.

God is still working to restore relationships with those who do not yet believe Him. Are you working to restore any broken friendships you have?

NOTE: In the right hand column of my site, there is a link to Bible Gateway, which provides excellent, free, online access to multiple translations of the Bible. There is easy access with search windows to find passages either by a word or phrase or by the Bible reference itself. Enjoy discovering the Word of God online.

Positively “Electrifying”!…

…or “What Hath God Wrought?”

Been watching AMC’s “Halt and Catch Fire…”

Let me say first that I am not a fan of voyeuristic viewing, and I could comment on the fixations of the writers and producers, but I do not wish to dwell on those things here. If you can get past all the gratuitous physical play-acting, there were striking messages in this series which I cannot ignore…

Such as?” you ask…

Rather than my publishing “cliff notes” for the series here, I recommend that you say a prayer and engage your little grey cells and watch how the process began and unfolded–the subject process being that of wrestling information into a communicable medium for a world community to share…

My “Aha!” moment occurred the other day, when I was searching the web for definitions and Bible verses, listening to messages I missed at church, writing e-mails, and sending e-cards, listening to worship music on YouTube, etc…

Those digitally minded brains who see everything in the world–all information in bits and bytes… mathematically defined… they stayed up nights theorizing and seeking mathematical solutions for packaging information into a form which can be communicated, collected, stored, and found all over the world. I think of it as “electrifying” information. (That may not be an accurate description, and to all who are knowledgeable in such things, I apologize;  but that is the only way I can think of it–being that I don’t see the world in numbers and algorithms and mathematical equations. To me it is positively “electrifying!”)…

keyboard head2

I would guess that the series writers and producers were pretty accurate when they developed their cast of cerebral story characters whose efforts became highly competitive (that’s a euphemism) to develop the software and the hardware for this project. In truth, many of them  scratched and clawed to make it to the top of the heap in the “www”…

They thought they were building an empire for themselves…

…But God used the gifting they enjoyed by His grace to build it for us who know and understand the God of all math–even if we don’t understand the math; we understand the God of all math. To be sure, everybody enjoys the mercy of using it for now; but if you view it through the lens of eternal reality, we who believe in Jesus are co-owners with Him of the whole blooming network…

In Bosley’s words: “Well, ain’t that a hoot!”  

Thanking God for the network, even if I have to share it with those who will not acknowledge that their gift has come from God and give Him the glory due to Him… some day… For now, let us who were created for declaring the Kingdom of God in Christ Jesus, use the www in a way which glorifies Him and increases His Kingdom in all the earth…

Trusting the God of all math to grant the increase and to multiply to His glory my bits and bytes about His glory on the www pages of my thoughts…

The Feast of Trumpets and the Feast of Christ the King…

Both feasts—the one celebrated in Jewish circles, and the other celebrated in Gentile circles–call our attention to the return of the King

trumpets stained glass 3Two months apart on this year’s calendar, the Feast of Trumpets comes at evening September 20, while the Feast of Christ the King for many in the Gentile churches comes on November 26. Both feasts—the one celebrated in Jewish circles, and the other celebrated in Gentile circles–call our attention to the return of the King. In Roman Catholic circles the Feast of Christ the King remembers the “parousia” which is that third great moment in His-story when all that has always and ever belonged to Messiah Jesus is at last seen clearly to be put under His subjection–the fulfillment of all that is promised in the Messiah’s return…

…In the seventh month, on the first day…you shall have a…memorial of blowing of trumpets…” 

 –Leviticus 23.24

To be sure, the Feast of Trumpets is the beginning of another season of worship in Jewish circles, whether those believing in Messiah Yeshua, or still boxed in by tradition alone. It is the beginning of 10 days of awe and remembrance, the Yomim Noraim. In many orthodox Jewish circles, spiritual preparation for the Feast of Trumpets begins four weeks earlier during the sixth Hebrew calendar month of Elul. The 10 days observed with the trumpet blast, the sound of the shofar, lead up to the Feast of the Atonement. For Hebrew Christians, these are 10 intensely awesome days of reflection on the majesty and faithfulness of a holy God and the desperate need among rebellious, sin-sick mankind for the coming of the Holy One of Israel, the King of kings, of whom the prophets and Moses and the psalms speak…

Open my mouth, O Lord, and my lips will proclaim Your praise. Praised are You, Lord our God and God of our ancestors, God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob, great, mighty, awesome, exalted God who bestows loving kindness, Creator of all. You remember the pious deeds of our ancestors and will send a redeemer to their children’s children because of Your loving nature. You are the King who helps and saves and shields. Praised are You Lord, Shield of Abraham. Your might, O Lord, is boundless. You give life to the dead; great is Your saving power…”

Prayer for a Festival Eve, Jewish Prayerbook

In Gentile Christian church circles, the Feast of Christ the King is the climax of the 23 weeks of the summer season of Pentecost/Trinity, during which the daily and weekly Scriptural passages declare the authenticating work and reputation of the One to whom the Spirit of God testifies, the  Lord Jesus. While the Feast of Trumpets begins 10 days of awe and remembrance leading to the Feast of the Atonement, the Feast of Christ the King begins the season of Advent in some circles of the Gentile Christian churches—four weeks, 28 days, of reflection on the majesty of a holy God and the desperate need among rebellious, sin-sick mankind for the coming of the Holy One of Israel, the King of kings of whom the prophets and Moses and the psalms speak…

Almighty and everlasting God, whose will it is to restore all things in Your well-beloved Son the King of kings and Lord of lords: mercifully grant that the peoples of the earth, divided and enslaved by sin, may be freed and brought together under His most gracious rule; who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen”

–Of the Reign of Christ, Book of Common Prayer

ChristTheKing3

The hour has come for you to wake up from your slumber, because…[Yeshua] is nearer now than when we first believed.”

–Romans 13.11

He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, in whom we have redemption through His blood…For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth…All things were created through Him and for Him. And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist. And He is the head of the…church…that in all things He may have the preeminence. For it pleased the Father that in Him all the fullness should dwell, and by Him to reconcile all things to Himself, by Him, whether things on earth or things in heaven, having made peace through the blood of His cross.”

–Colossians 1.13-20

Being a Messianic-Jewish-hearted Anglican Christian, I enjoy the double blessing of celebrating and remembering my King Jesus twice. How awesome is that?

And so I celebrate this season, knowing that Messiah Jesus, the King of Glory, will return… and that He is nearer now than when I first believed…

The Feast of Trumpets – Days of Awe 2…

Listen to the sound of the shofar!

Come, and let us return to the Lord; for He has torn, but He will heal us; He has stricken, but He will bind us up. After two days He will revive us; on the third day He will raise us up, that we may live in His sight.”

–Hosea 6:1-2*

Peter said to Him, “You shall never wash my feet!” Jesus answered him, “If I do not wash you, you have no part with Me.”

–John 13:8

Yom Teruah/Rosh Hashanah is not just a day. It begins a season reminding us of our need to confess our sins.  Believe it or not, repentance is a privilege in the covenant between a holy God and His people. We are not holy. We continually fail to obey His laws of holiness also given in the covenant. The one law that must never be broken, however, is repentance when we know we have sinned. If we reject this part of His covenant with us, we have no part with Him.

Psalm 139  and Psalm 51 might be good to examine right now and include in your prayer life from now on. If you have a broken relationship with another person, now is the time to ask God’s wisdom and help in resolving any bitterness that separates you.

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

–1 John 1:9

*NOTE: In the right hand column of my site, there is a link to Bible Gateway, which provides excellent, free, online access to multiple translations of the Bible. There is easy access with search windows to find passages either by a word or phrase or by the Bible reference itself. Enjoy discovering the Word of God online.

The Feast of Trumpets – Days of Awe 1

Listen to the shofar!

With trumpets and the sound of a horn; shout joyfully before the Lord, the King.”  

Psalm 98:6

This is a day to celebrate the wonder of creation, over which the Holy One, blessed be He, created and reigned.  When we acknowledge our Creator, we also recognize Him as King on this day, as king David did. Write down something the atmosphere of this season has shown you clearly is created and given to you to enjoy by God. Start a new season of living with your eyes open to the wonder of all that God has created and governs.

The hour has come for you to wake up from  your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed.”   

–Romans 13:11

Loving the Sound of the Shofar – The Feast of Trumpets Still Echoes…

Yom Teruah/Feast of Trumpets

SCRIPTURE

trumpets stained glass 3Leviticus 23.23-44 states that in the beginning of the seventh month–the Hebrew month Tishrei–the season of summer labors is to cease.  A new season in the life of a Jew begins.  It is characterized by a sabbath, a rest.  The Divine Mandate summons the mind of a Jew burdened with earthly labors to relinquish that yoke for the pleasant yoke of renewed intimacy with God and spiritual revival.  It is a time of remembering the holiness and mercy of Israel’s God, the Lord and Sustainer of all creation.  It is a time of heart response to that remembrance of His awesome being and character.

Leviticus 23.24 says this season of “R&R” begins on the first day of Tishrei with a loud trumpet call. This day is called Yom Teruah which is the Hebrew for “Day of Blowing.”  The Scriptural name for it is the Feast of Trumpets.

The shofar, or ram’s horn, is an essential part of the Feast of Yom Teruah.  Its sound is quite distinctive and is blown to call Israel to return with all their heart to the Lord, away from their labors and all disobedience…

Traditions…  see next page

Pages: 1 2 3

Fallen Co-Regents…

Early in this morning, 5:30, I awaken to a power outage in our neighborhood…In a ground floor garden condo, facing north, it gets dark without the help of interior lighting after sundown. But this was really DARK:  without the benefit of the glow of exterior security lights on the neighboring buildings… 

I felt my way to the room where I keep  my stash of tea light candles and kitchen matches to get some light for my nocturnal shuffling. Then I rummaged for flashlights and batteries. When I finally returned to bed, I was too stimulated to go back to sleep; so I prayed and reflected on Scriptures featured in  recent posts on my blog… all on the theme of the parables of the Kingdom of God–specifically, that Jesus is the King of the Kingdom of God, and His parables are word pictures of what the Kingdom of God is like… And Jesus is explaining the Kingdom of God to His listeners because  we were created to be co-regents and ministers with God over all His creation… and we messed up “royally…”

As I prayed, I remembered an encounter with one of my Sunday School children this past week–an encounter which, in that moment, forced me out of my comfort zone. I confess that over the months of working with the children in my class, I had begun to grow, and especially to grow more comfortable with them. We all grew, the children and I; but without fully realizing it, I had become settled into my little “organized kingdom…”

 With the advent of the new school year, the demographic changed, and God gave me a new little man to nurture in the Word and Kingdom of God. The little man was not having any of it; he is quite comfortable in his own little world where he is king…   

In the early morning moments of this day, remembering this encounter drew me into prayer for the child… And then for me… The answers from the Lord came flooding into my soul… 

Big question: How can a fallen co-regent even hope to approach answering Christ’s holy commission while in this tainted condition? More specifically, how can a fallen but sanctified Sunday School teacher–so much in need of grace–co-reign with Christ in the business of declaring the Kingdom of God to 15 wee fallen ones, each one in need of extra grace?

This is where I was awakened (in the early hours of a morning power outage) to the weight of the glory of God…

I could not access my computer, and I could not see to write the flood of things I was learning in my moments alone with the Lord. I never did get back to sleep, and I had a new Bible Study group to attend after breakfast.  As I lean heavily into the Holy Spirit to bring to memory what we exchanged in prayer in those glorious moments, here, I am pouring it all out as best I can…

‘Not by might, nor by power; but by My Spirit,’ says the LORD of hosts.

–Zechariah 4.6 NKJV

I am called during this season of my life to nurture another generation in the knowledge of the Word of God and the Lord Jesus Christ… I am a member of the human race, a descendant of the ones created in the image and likeness of God for the purpose of  being co-regents and ministers with God in His Kingdom–all of creation… And I am a fallen regent…

But the commission has not changed; and in Christ, the commission is to declare the Kingdom of God revealed in the Bible and the life and ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ: the “now” and the “not yet.” And I am still “becoming…”  I am “not yet” lifted to a  place where my responses in fallen encounters are either immediately or completely characteristic of a “made perfect” co-regent and minister with Christ…

…He came down from heaven: by the power of the Holy Spirit, He became incarnate from the Virgin Mary and was made man…For our sake… 

–The Nicene Creed

Wrapping my mind around the truth of the Nicene Creed: Jesus became incarnate; not like any other man in His Perfect Being, He dwelled in the vessel of a man born like any other man, for our sake

Yes, Jesus laid down His life for our sake; but His sacrifice for our sake began long before He was “led as a lamb to the slaughter…” before “He was wounded for our transgressions and bruised for our iniquities.”  (Isaiah 53.5-7, NKJV)

The angels attended His incarnation, announcing the glory of the Lord. No less gloriously, He laid aside His resplendent majesty and became incarnate; and He lived as a man on our fallen planet, among His fallen co-regents…  for our sake and He told us what we had forgotten about the Kingdom of God… (Matthew 13.1-52, NKJV)  

By His incarnate life we can see how the God-Man, the Unfallen Regent, the One who is  “all the fullness of the Godhead bodily” (Colossians 2.9, NKJV) walked in this dusty existence as the Christus Rex, among and over all fallen creation–in full submission and communion with the Father and the Holy Spirit… at every turn… without fail… perfectly reigning with the Father and the Holy Spirit… for our sake even to death on a cross… to reconcile His fallen co-regents to submission and communion with the Father and the Holy Spirit as He is…

…where I am meant to be… where I am in my sanctification “now,” but in this dusty existence “not yet.” My reflexes are not yet always, completely, and perfectly tuned to seek God’s regency in my life, let alone to seek or comprehend His counsels at the lightning speed of life in times like these…

…when my Sunday School children need to see the presence of the Kingdom of God while I declare the Kingdom of God to them from the Word of God… even while yet a fallen co-regent with Christ… for such a time as this…

I am undone… God, help me… 

My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.

–2 Corinthians 12.9 NKJV

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