[Because we are Christians and live in the world we will always need prayer for our walk and for witnessing to others about CHRIST. Here’s an opportunity to pray for others or even ourselves. Fill the name in the blanks.]
BREAD OF LIFE
“Jesus said to them, ‘I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst” (John 6:35 ESV).
FATHER, not only does Your Son take away ____’s sin, and become (his/her) righteousness, but He continues to be active in (his/her) life. CHRIST must daily feed (him/her) (John 6:56). ____ must live off Him. You were the bread of life to JESUS, as JESUS must be the bread of life to ____ (John 6:57).
SPIRIT, awaken ____ to understand how to wait for Your instructions. Satisfy (his/her) desire to possess the planted-firm faith that JESUS had and not panic with thoughts of situations present and future. Empower ____ with a cool head void of (his/her) own planning and empower (him/her) with ears that wait for Your directions. You, SPIRIT, will supply the bread from JESUS to (him/her). Quicken ____ to open wide and let JESUS feed (him/her) (Ps 81:10).
THE INTENT OF THE SABBATH
“…actual intent of the Sabbath – to bring rest and well-being…” ESV Study Bible (ref#125, p1844, [Matt 12:8]).
GOD rested after creation:
“God entered into Himself again after He had created the world out of Himself, that all created things might enter into Him…and was designed by the strict prohibition of all work to force them to enter into themselves and occupy their minds with God and His word” Keil and Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament (ref#68, [Isa 58:13-14]).
“God’s purpose for the earth is that it should become his dwelling place; it is not simply made to house his creatures….The concept of the earth as a divine sanctuary…runs throughout the whole Bible, coming to a climax in the future reality that the apostle John sees in his vision of the ‘new heaven and a new earth’…” ESV Study Bible (ref#125, [Gen 2:1-3]).
JESUS rested after redemption:
“Just as He rested after performing the ultimate sacrifice, He sat down and rested—ceased from His labor of atonement because there was nothing more to be done, ever….Jesus was sent so that we might rest in God and in what He has provided” (ref#172).
I rest in their accomplishments—my faith in them produces my rest. I rest by doing nothing but believing what they have done. The Triune GOD has done all the work. My Sabbath rest and consequent strength for the coming week is realized by a day-long dwelling in the Kingdom of GOD, going around His altar reviewing and proclaiming His mercies.
Seems the result of Sabbath rest is experiencing my faith strengthened—noticing more and more being ruled by GOD. Confirming the dependence on Him thrills my heart—realizing this is what I was created for and finding rest in it.
“In Thy Presence silence best becomes us, but love inflames our hearts and constrains us to speak” A. W. Tozer (ref#117, p6).
THEY HUNG AN INNOCENT MAN
(That the Scriptures Might Be Fulfilled)
You and I first met on Bonnie’s blog Christmas Day 2015. At that encounter we established it is easy to say that Jesus was born to die because it’s true. “For even the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many” (Mark 10:45 KJV). The wee baby in that manger bed on Christmas morning had a birth announcement like none other. “For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord” (Luke 2:11 KJV). As the Lord God Almighty had foretold, the promised Messiah had come. Yes, Jesus was born to give his life a ransom for many! Jesus had come to die.
“A body hast thou prepared me [born on Christmas morn]. Then said I [Jesus], Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me,) to do thy will, O God” (Hebrews 10:5, 7 KJV [italics and brackets mine]). What “volume of the book” is He speaking of here? Why, in the volume of God’s Word, of course!
“And the LORD God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life: And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel” (Genesis 3:14-15 KJV [italics mine]). “Her seed” came through the womb of Mary by the power of the Holy Spirit—they called his name Jesus.
“Yet it was the will of the LORD to bruise him; he has put him to grief; when he makes himself an offering for sin, he shall see his offspring, he shall prolong his days; the will of the LORD shall prosper in his hand” (Isaiah 53:10 RSV [italics mine]).
“When he makes himself an offering for sin”—on the night he was betrayed Jesus initiated a new testament in His blood! We call it, the Lord’s Supper—The Communion of the saints. Baby Jesus born of a virgin, the seed of a woman had come according to plan and now some thirty-three years later He was about to turn the entire world right side up! “A ransom for many”, Paul describes it here for us:
“For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread: And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me. After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me. For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord’s death till he come” (1 Corinthians 11:23-26 KJV [italics mine]).
From the observance of the very first Communion service in the upper room, Christ and the disciples made their way to the Garden of Gethsemane. It was there Jesus prayed the following:
“Then saith he unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye here, and watch with me. And he went a little further, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt” (Matthew 26:38-39 KJV [italics mine]).
Could it be “the cup” mentioned in the prayer above is that same “cup in my blood” we share in our Communion Service? The Sacrificial Lamb of God had come to do the Father’s will and He did it all the way to the finish line! Baby Jesus, now a man, would be, according to Scripture, the “body prepared” that would hang on a cross, in a cruel public spectacle until dead. But, wait for it! Resurrection Sunday Morning! He arose, just as he said he would! The tomb was empty! Jesus, in that same “prepared body” is alive and reigns today at the Father’s right hand! “Our Savior’s victory over death was obtained by dying, His triumph by rising again. He foiled our common enemy in his own territories, the grave” (Bates, 268). It is finished! The wages of sin’s penalty, which is death, has been paid in full! The serpent’s head has been crushed! The “stinger” has been removed from death’s tail as it were! All because He lives! Yes, they hung an innocent man, but it was not an accident nor mishap, it was and still is all according to plan. I like the way C. H. Spurgeon said it: “Where misery was concentrated weary souls find rest.”
Sing out with me will you!
God sent his son, they called him Jesus,
He came to love, heal and forgive.
He lived and died to buy my pardon
An empty grave is there to prove my Savior lives.
Because He lives I can face tomorrow
Because He lives all fear is gone
Because I know He holds the future
And life is worth the living
Just because He lives.
Happy Resurrection Sunday!
In 1997 the LORD commissioned me to craft for Him and to speak for Him. I’ve been crafting and speaking ever since. I pray He has been pleased by what was said here…and that you have been encouraged.