Finger-pointing

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“Don’t get so caught up in blaming your neighbor that you waste the energy you need to increase your spiritual maturity.”

TB

Blame

It’s not hard to find fault in the people you do life with. There are bad drivers, annoying bosses, nagging spouses, spoiled kids, the list goes on and on. If you’re looking for a reason to be frustrated or angry, it does not take long to find a reason. However, when we exert our energy and focus on who and what is wrong in our lives, we forget to focus on the one who is right. More to the point, we stop to realize our responsibility to ourselves.

Mirror

Friends, life is not perfect, and neither are you. By focusing outward, we stop reflecting inward on how we can pick up our daily cross to walk with Christ. Instead of obsessing and pointing the finger at your neighbor, look in the mirror and ask God how you can improve yourself. We all have areas of improvement. When you aspire to move in God’s direction, you’ll find that you focus on being a better neighbor, lessening your time or need for finger-pointing

Today’s Question

Are you focused on improving with God, or complaining about your neighbor?

Enjoy the reading

Exodus 29

1 “This is the ceremony you must follow when you consecrate Aaron and his sons to serve me as priests: Take a young bull and two rams with no defects. 2 Then, using choice wheat flour and no yeast, make loaves of bread, thin cakes mixed with olive oil, and wafers spread with oil. 3 Place them all in a single basket, and present them at the entrance of the Tabernacle, along with the young bull and the two rams. 4 “Present Aaron and his sons at the entrance of the Tabernacle, and wash them with water. 5 Dress Aaron in his priestly garments—the tunic, the robe worn with the ephod, the ephod itself, and the chestpiece. Then wrap the decorative sash of the ephod around him. 6 Place the turban on his head, and fasten the sacred medallion to the turban. 7 Then anoint him by pouring the anointing oil over his head. 8 Next present his sons, and dress them in their tunics. 9 Wrap the sashes around the waists of Aaron and his sons, and put their special head coverings on them. Then the right to the priesthood will be theirs by law forever. In this way, you will ordain Aaron and his sons. 10 “Bring the young bull to the entrance of the Tabernacle, where Aaron and his sons will lay their hands on its head. 11 Then slaughter the bull in the LORD ’s presence at the entrance of the Tabernacle. 12 Put some of its blood on the horns of the altar with your finger, and pour out the rest at the base of the altar. 13 Take all the fat around the internal organs, the long lobe of the liver, and the two kidneys and the fat around them, and burn it all on the altar. 14 Then take the rest of the bull, including its hide, meat, and dung, and burn it outside the camp as a sin offering. 15 “Next Aaron and his sons must lay their hands on the head of one of the rams. 16 Then slaughter the ram, and splatter its blood against all sides of the altar. 17 Cut the ram into pieces, and wash off the internal organs and the legs. Set them alongside the head and the other pieces of the body, 18 then burn the entire animal on the altar. This is a burnt offering to the LORD ; it is a pleasing aroma, a special gift presented to the LORD . 19 “Now take the other ram, and have Aaron and his sons lay their hands on its head. 20 Then slaughter it, and apply some of its blood to the right earlobes of Aaron and his sons. Also put it on the thumbs of their right hands and the big toes of their right feet. Splatter the rest of the blood against all sides of the altar. 21 Then take some of the blood from the altar and some of the anointing oil, and sprinkle it on Aaron and his sons and on their garments. In this way, they and their garments will be set apart as holy. 22 “Since this is the ram for the ordination of Aaron and his sons, take the fat of the ram, including the fat of the broad tail, the fat around the internal organs, the long lobe of the liver, and the two kidneys and the fat around them, along with the right thigh. 23 Then take one round loaf of bread, one thin cake mixed with olive oil, and one wafer from the basket of bread without yeast that was placed in the LORD ’s presence. 24 Put all these in the hands of Aaron and his sons to be lifted up as a special offering to the LORD . 25 Afterward take the various breads from their hands, and burn them on the altar along with the burnt offering. It is a pleasing aroma to the LORD, a special gift for him. 26 Then take the breast of Aaron’s ordination ram, and lift it up in the LORD ’s presence as a special offering to him. Then keep it as your own portion. 27 “Set aside the portions of the ordination ram that belong to Aaron and his sons. This includes the breast and the thigh that were lifted up before the LORD as a special offering. 28 In the future, whenever the people of Israel lift up a peace offering, a portion of it must be set aside for Aaron and his descendants. This is their permanent right, and it is a sacred offering from the Israelites to the LORD . 29 “Aaron’s sacred garments must be preserved for his descendants who succeed him, and they will wear them when they are anointed and ordained. 30 The descendant who succeeds him as high priest will wear these clothes for seven days as he ministers in the Tabernacle and the Holy Place. 31 “Take the ram used in the ordination ceremony, and boil its meat in a sacred place. 32 Then Aaron and his sons will eat this meat, along with the bread in the basket, at the Tabernacle entrance. 33 They alone may eat the meat and bread used for their purification in the ordination ceremony. No one else may eat them, for these things are set apart and holy. 34 If any of the ordination meat or bread remains until the morning, it must be burned. It may not be eaten, for it is holy. 35 “This is how you will ordain Aaron and his sons to their offices, just as I have commanded you. The ordination ceremony will go on for seven days. 36 Each day you must sacrifice a young bull as a sin offering to purify them, making them right with the LORD . Afterward, cleanse the altar by purifying it ; make it holy by anointing it with oil. 37 Purify the altar, and consecrate it every day for seven days. After that, the altar will be absolutely holy, and whatever touches it will become holy. 38 “These are the sacrifices you are to offer regularly on the altar. Each day, offer two lambs that are a year old, 39 one in the morning and the other in the evening. 40 With one of them, offer two quarts of choice flour mixed with one quart of pure oil of pressed olives; also, offer one quart of wine as a liquid offering. 41 Offer the other lamb in the evening, along with the same offerings of flour and wine as in the morning. It will be a pleasing aroma, a special gift presented to the LORD . 42 “These burnt offerings are to be made each day from generation to generation. Offer them in the LORD ’s presence at the Tabernacle entrance; there I will meet with you and speak with you. 43 I will meet the people of Israel there, in the place made holy by my glorious presence. 44 Yes, I will consecrate the Tabernacle and the altar, and I will consecrate Aaron and his sons to serve me as priests. 45 Then I will live among the people of Israel and be their God, 46 and they will know that I am the LORD their God. I am the one who brought them out of the land of Egypt so that I could live among them. I am the LORD their God.

Dehydrated

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“A child of God without the regular consumption of the word is like a body functioning without water.”

TB

Malnourished

Spending time with God and reading the Bible are not just ‘nice to haves’. They are vital to your spiritual health and nourishment. When we go through prolonged droughts without connecting to Christs, our spiritual fortitude dries up, like a body going through dehydration. When we are malnourished, we start to wander from the narrow path that connects us to Christ.

Rehydrate

Failing to regularly connect to God and His word affects us in so many ways. However, we can quickly rehydrate by getting a tall, refreshing drink of the word. The Bible shares wisdom, guidance, and peace for us to reflect and implement within our lives. The Living Word was given to us so that we may be renewed daily. If you’re feeling parched, come back to Him by taking in His word.

Today’s Question

Are you spiritually dehydrated?

Enjoy the reading

Exodus 28

1 “Call for your brother, Aaron, and his sons, Nadab, Abihu, Eleazar, and Ithamar. Set them apart from the rest of the people of Israel so they may minister to me and be my priests. 2 Make sacred garments for Aaron that are glorious and beautiful. 3 Instruct all the skilled craftsmen whom I have filled with the spirit of wisdom. Have them make garments for Aaron that will distinguish him as a priest set apart for my service. 4 These are the garments they are to make: a chestpiece, an ephod, a robe, a patterned tunic, a turban, and a sash. They are to make these sacred garments for your brother, Aaron, and his sons to wear when they serve me as priests. 5 So give them fine linen cloth, gold thread, and blue, purple, and scarlet thread. 6 “The craftsmen must make the ephod of finely woven linen and skillfully embroider it with gold and with blue, purple, and scarlet thread. 7 It will consist of two pieces, front and back, joined at the shoulders with two shoulder-pieces. 8 The decorative sash will be made of the same materials: finely woven linen embroidered with gold and with blue, purple, and scarlet thread. 9 “Take two onyx stones, and engrave on them the names of the tribes of Israel. 10 Six names will be on each stone, arranged in the order of the births of the original sons of Israel. 11 Engrave these names on the two stones in the same way a jeweler engraves a seal. Then mount the stones in settings of gold filigree. 12 Fasten the two stones on the shoulder-pieces of the ephod as a reminder that Aaron represents the people of Israel. Aaron will carry these names on his shoulders as a constant reminder whenever he goes before the LORD . 13 Make the settings of gold filigree, 14 then braid two cords of pure gold and attach them to the filigree settings on the shoulders of the ephod. 15 “Then, with great skill and care, make a chestpiece to be worn for seeking a decision from God. Make it to match the ephod, using finely woven linen embroidered with gold and with blue, purple, and scarlet thread. 16 Make the chestpiece of a single piece of cloth folded to form a pouch nine inches square. 17 Mount four rows of gemstones on it. The first row will contain a red carnelian, a pale-green peridot, and an emerald. 18 The second row will contain a turquoise, a blue lapis lazuli, and a white moonstone. 19 The third row will contain an orange jacinth, an agate, and a purple amethyst. 20 The fourth row will contain a blue-green beryl, an onyx, and a green jasper. All these stones will be set in gold filigree. 21 Each stone will represent one of the twelve sons of Israel, and the name of that tribe will be engraved on it like a seal. 22 “To attach the chestpiece to the ephod, make braided cords of pure gold thread. 23 Then make two gold rings and attach them to the top corners of the chestpiece. 24 Tie the two gold cords to the two rings on the chestpiece. 25 Tie the other ends of the cords to the gold settings on the shoulder-pieces of the ephod. 26 Then make two more gold rings and attach them to the inside edges of the chestpiece next to the ephod. 27 And make two more gold rings and attach them to the front of the ephod, below the shoulder-pieces, just above the knot where the decorative sash is fastened to the ephod. 28 Then attach the bottom rings of the chestpiece to the rings on the ephod with blue cords. This will hold the chestpiece securely to the ephod above the decorative sash. 29 “In this way, Aaron will carry the names of the tribes of Israel on the sacred chestpiece over his heart when he goes into the Holy Place. This will be a continual reminder that he represents the people when he comes before the LORD . 30 Insert the Urim and Thummim into the sacred chestpiece so they will be carried over Aaron’s heart when he goes into the LORD ’s presence. In this way, Aaron will always carry over his heart the objects used to determine the LORD ’s will for his people whenever he goes in before the LORD . 31 “Make the robe that is worn with the ephod from a single piece of blue cloth, 32 with an opening for Aaron’s head in the middle of it. Reinforce the opening with a woven collar so it will not tear. 33 Make pomegranates out of blue, purple, and scarlet yarn, and attach them to the hem of the robe, with gold bells between them. 34 The gold bells and pomegranates are to alternate all around the hem. 35 Aaron will wear this robe whenever he ministers before the LORD, and the bells will tinkle as he goes in and out of the LORD ’s presence in the Holy Place. If he wears it, he will not die. 36 “Next make a medallion of pure gold, and engrave it like a seal with these words: HOLY TO THE LORD . 37 Attach the medallion with a blue cord to the front of Aaron’s turban, where it must remain. 38 Aaron must wear it on his forehead so he may take on himself any guilt of the people of Israel when they consecrate their sacred offerings. He must always wear it on his forehead so the LORD will accept the people. 39 “Weave Aaron’s patterned tunic from fine linen cloth. Fashion the turban from this linen as well. Also make a sash, and decorate it with colorful embroidery. 40 “For Aaron’s sons, make tunics, sashes, and special head coverings that are glorious and beautiful. 41 Clothe your brother, Aaron, and his sons with these garments, and then anoint and ordain them. Consecrate them so they can serve as my priests. 42 Also make linen undergarments for them, to be worn next to their bodies, reaching from their hips to their thighs. 43 These must be worn whenever Aaron and his sons enter the Tabernacle or approach the altar in the Holy Place to perform their priestly duties. Then they will not incur guilt and die. This is a permanent law for Aaron and all his descendants after him.

Peace in the Valley

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“There is peace in time of hardships, we must steady our resolve to find it.”

TB

Perfection

Here on earth, there is no perfect situation or utopia to be had. That said, once you understand that every moment in your life will never be perfect, you can then turn towards the perfect peace that a relationship with God provides in your valley times.

Valley

Just because there are hardships does not mean that peace is not available to you. Remember that in this life, peace is not a state of mind. Peace comes from knowing who God is, what He’s promised to His children, and who He sent to bring us salvation. When your in the valley, find rest in His peace.

Today’s Question

Are you finding peace in the valley, or are you still searching for a utopia that doesn’t exist?

Enjoy the reading

Exodus 27

1 “Using acacia wood, construct a square altar 7 feet wide, 7 feet long, and 4 feet high. 2 Make horns for each of its four corners so that the horns and altar are all one piece. Overlay the altar with bronze. 3 Make ash buckets, shovels, basins, meat forks, and firepans, all of bronze. 4 Make a bronze grating for it, and attach four bronze rings at its four corners. 5 Install the grating halfway down the side of the altar, under the ledge. 6 For carrying the altar, make poles from acacia wood, and overlay them with bronze. 7 Insert the poles through the rings on the two sides of the altar. 8 The altar must be hollow, made from planks. Build it just as you were shown on the mountain. 9 “Then make the courtyard for the Tabernacle, enclosed with curtains made of finely woven linen. On the south side, make the curtains 150 feet long. 10 They will be held up by twenty posts set securely in twenty bronze bases. Hang the curtains with silver hooks and rings. 11 Make the curtains the same on the north side—150 feet of curtains held up by twenty posts set securely in bronze bases. Hang the curtains with silver hooks and rings. 12 The curtains on the west end of the courtyard will be 75 feet long, supported by ten posts set into ten bases. 13 The east end of the courtyard, the front, will also be 75 feet long. 14 The courtyard entrance will be on the east end, flanked by two curtains. The curtain on the right side will be 22 feet long, supported by three posts set into three bases. 15 The curtain on the left side will also be 22 feet long, supported by three posts set into three bases. 16 “For the entrance to the courtyard, make a curtain that is 30 feet long. Make it from finely woven linen, and decorate it with beautiful embroidery in blue, purple, and scarlet thread. Support it with four posts, each securely set in its own base. 17 All the posts around the courtyard must have silver rings and hooks and bronze bases. 18 So the entire courtyard will be 150 feet long and 75 feet wide, with curtain walls 7 feet high, made from finely woven linen. The bases for the posts will be made of bronze. 19 “All the articles used in the rituals of the Tabernacle, including all the tent pegs used to support the Tabernacle and the courtyard curtains, must be made of bronze. 20 “Command the people of Israel to bring you pure oil of pressed olives for the light, to keep the lamps burning continually. 21 The lampstand will stand in the Tabernacle, in front of the inner curtain that shields the Ark of the Covenant. Aaron and his sons must keep the lamps burning in the LORD ’s presence all night. This is a permanent law for the people of Israel, and it must be observed from generation to generation.

Goaltending

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“Examine the motives and the desires of your heart so that you don’t block blessings from God.”

TB

Foul

Foolish pride is a very dumb catalyst. If you’re not careful, your pride can cost you the very things God set aside for you! Like a sheep to the slaughter, your dumb pride will convince you to throw away what is good for the sake of your ego. Like a basketball player blocking a shot that was going in, your pride will get you fouled out. Friends, don’t let your pride lead you into enslavement.

Free Throw

Understand that God is merciful and when you repent, He will go to the free-throw line and make your shots. When you know the God is sovereign and that His love is unyielding, you learn how to not block your blessings. More to the point, you begin to enact His plays for your life. Salvation is just the beginning. Build your relationship with God so that you may know and use the entire playbook.

Today’s Question

Are you willing to goaltend on the life that God has for you?

Enjoy the reading

Exodus 26

1 “Make the Tabernacle from ten curtains of finely woven linen. Decorate the curtains with blue, purple, and scarlet thread and with skillfully embroidered cherubim. 2 These ten curtains must all be exactly the same size—42 feet long and 6 feet wide. 3 Join five of these curtains together to make one long curtain, then join the other five into a second long curtain. 4 Put loops of blue yarn along the edge of the last curtain in each set. 5 The fifty loops along the edge of one curtain are to match the fifty loops along the edge of the other curtain. 6 Then make fifty gold clasps and fasten the long curtains together with the clasps. In this way, the Tabernacle will be made of one continuous piece. 7 “Make eleven curtains of goat-hair cloth to serve as a tent covering for the Tabernacle. 8 These eleven curtains must all be exactly the same size—45 feet long and 6 feet wide. 9 Join five of these curtains together to make one long curtain, and join the other six into a second long curtain. Allow 3 feet of material from the second set of curtains to hang over the front of the sacred tent. 10 Make fifty loops for one edge of each large curtain. 11 Then make fifty bronze clasps, and fasten the loops of the long curtains with the clasps. In this way, the tent covering will be made of one continuous piece. 12 The remaining 3 feet of this tent covering will be left to hang over the back of the Tabernacle. 13 Allow 18 inches of remaining material to hang down over each side, so the Tabernacle is completely covered. 14 Complete the tent covering with a protective layer of tanned ram skins and a layer of fine goatskin leather. 15 “For the framework of the Tabernacle, construct frames of acacia wood. 16 Each frame must be 15 feet high and 27 inches wide, 17 with two pegs under each frame. Make all the frames identical. 18 Make twenty of these frames to support the curtains on the south side of the Tabernacle. 19 Also make forty silver bases—two bases under each frame, with the pegs fitting securely into the bases. 20 For the north side of the Tabernacle, make another twenty frames, 21 with their forty silver bases, two bases under each frame. 22 Make six frames for the rear—the west side of the Tabernacle— 23 along with two additional frames to reinforce the rear corners of the Tabernacle. 24 These corner frames will be matched at the bottom and firmly attached at the top with a single ring, forming a single corner unit. Make both of these corner units the same way. 25 So there will be eight frames at the rear of the Tabernacle, set in sixteen silver bases—two bases under each frame. 26 “Make crossbars of acacia wood to link the frames, five crossbars for the north side of the Tabernacle 27 and five for the south side. Also make five crossbars for the rear of the Tabernacle, which will face west. 28 The middle crossbar, attached halfway up the frames, will run all the way from one end of the Tabernacle to the other. 29 Overlay the frames with gold, and make gold rings to hold the crossbars. Overlay the crossbars with gold as well. 30 “Set up this Tabernacle according to the pattern you were shown on the mountain. 31 “For the inside of the Tabernacle, make a special curtain of finely woven linen. Decorate it with blue, purple, and scarlet thread and with skillfully embroidered cherubim. 32 Hang this curtain on gold hooks attached to four posts of acacia wood. Overlay the posts with gold, and set them in four silver bases. 33 Hang the inner curtain from clasps, and put the Ark of the Covenant in the room behind it. This curtain will separate the Holy Place from the Most Holy Place. 34 “Then put the Ark’s cover—the place of atonement—on top of the Ark of the Covenant inside the Most Holy Place. 35 Place the table outside the inner curtain on the north side of the Tabernacle, and place the lampstand across the room on the south side. 36 “Make another curtain for the entrance to the sacred tent. Make it of finely woven linen and embroider it with exquisite designs, using blue, purple, and scarlet thread. 37 Craft five posts from acacia wood. Overlay them with gold, and hang the curtain from them with gold hooks. Cast five bronze bases for the posts.

Quiet Time

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“Find your daily quiet time to learn from God.”

TB

Golden Silence

When we’re too busy, too noisy, too everything, we lose sight of the main thing, becoming more susceptible to the opposition’s bag of tricks. Make time to silence the noise around and within you to hear from God. It is in that golden silence where you can glean wisdom from Christ.

Christ Applicable

God patiently waits until we ask Him for wisdom, help, and solutions. Friends, we must pick up our crosses, slow down and be quiet, and ask so that we may hear from our Father in Heaven. In doing so, we can apply the wisdom that we receive both biblically and spiritually. In the quiet time, we learn to grow in Christ.

Today’s Question

Are you enjoying the silence or the chaos of the noise that distracts you from Christ?

Enjoy the reading

Exodus 25

1 The LORD said to Moses, 2 “Tell the people of Israel to bring me their sacred offerings. Accept the contributions from all whose hearts are moved to offer them. 3 Here is a list of sacred offerings you may accept from them: gold, silver, and bronze; 4 blue, purple, and scarlet thread; fine linen and goat hair for cloth; 5 tanned ram skins and fine goatskin leather; acacia wood; 6 olive oil for the lamps; spices for the anointing oil and the fragrant incense; 7 onyx stones, and other gemstones to be set in the ephod and the priest’s chestpiece. 8 “Have the people of Israel build me a holy sanctuary so I can live among them. 9 You must build this Tabernacle and its furnishings exactly according to the pattern I will show you. 10 “Have the people make an Ark of acacia wood—a sacred chest 45 inches long, 27 inches wide, and 27 inches high. 11 Overlay it inside and outside with pure gold, and run a molding of gold all around it. 12 Cast four gold rings and attach them to its four feet, two rings on each side. 13 Make poles from acacia wood, and overlay them with gold. 14 Insert the poles into the rings at the sides of the Ark to carry it. 15 These carrying poles must stay inside the rings; never remove them. 16 When the Ark is finished, place inside it the stone tablets inscribed with the terms of the covenant, which I will give to you. 17 “Then make the Ark’s cover—the place of atonement—from pure gold. It must be 45 inches long and 27 inches wide. 18 Then make two cherubim from hammered gold, and place them on the two ends of the atonement cover. 19 Mold the cherubim on each end of the atonement cover, making it all of one piece of gold. 20 The cherubim will face each other and look down on the atonement cover. With their wings spread above it, they will protect it. 21 Place inside the Ark the stone tablets inscribed with the terms of the covenant, which I will give to you. Then put the atonement cover on top of the Ark. 22 I will meet with you there and talk to you from above the atonement cover between the gold cherubim that hover over the Ark of the Covenant. From there I will give you my commands for the people of Israel. 23 “Then make a table of acacia wood, 36 inches long, 18 inches wide, and 27 inches high. 24 Overlay it with pure gold and run a gold molding around the edge. 25 Decorate it with a 3-inch border all around, and run a gold molding along the border. 26 Make four gold rings for the table and attach them at the four corners next to the four legs. 27 Attach the rings near the border to hold the poles that are used to carry the table. 28 Make these poles from acacia wood, and overlay them with gold. 29 Make special containers of pure gold for the table—bowls, ladles, pitchers, and jars—to be used in pouring out liquid offerings. 30 Place the Bread of the Presence on the table to remain before me at all times. 31 “Make a lampstand of pure, hammered gold. Make the entire lampstand and its decorations of one piece—the base, center stem, lamp cups, buds, and petals. 32 Make it with six branches going out from the center stem, three on each side. 33 Each of the six branches will have three lamp cups shaped like almond blossoms, complete with buds and petals. 34 Craft the center stem of the lampstand with four lamp cups shaped like almond blossoms, complete with buds and petals. 35 There will also be an almond bud beneath each pair of branches where the six branches extend from the center stem. 36 The almond buds and branches must all be of one piece with the center stem, and they must be hammered from pure gold. 37 Then make the seven lamps for the lampstand, and set them so they reflect their light forward. 38 The lamp snuffers and trays must also be made of pure gold. 39 You will need 75 pounds of pure gold for the lampstand and its accessories. 40 “Be sure that you make everything according to the pattern I have shown you here on the mountain.

Mercy We

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“It’s amazing to see God’s handiwork when we practice mercy and forgiveness among each other.”

TB

Commit

Commit to forgiving transgressions and offenses because when you do, God can show you things only seen through obedience. Forgiveness not only lets the other person off of the hook, but it also enables you to be forgiven as well. Friends, we do not have the pay grade to judge one another.

Develop

Anything worthwhile takes time, love, and patience. The best relationships of any kind require those as well. When we learn to live with one another, we learn to grow together. With that growth, not only do we grow closer to God, we see Christ’s teachings in full effect.

Today’s Question

Do you give the mercy that you’re given?

Enjoy the reading

Exodus 24

1 Then the LORD instructed Moses: “Come up here to me, and bring along Aaron, Nadab, Abihu, and seventy of Israel’s elders. All of you must worship from a distance. 2 Only Moses is allowed to come near to the LORD . The others must not come near, and none of the other people are allowed to climb up the mountain with him.” 3 Then Moses went down to the people and repeated all the instructions and regulations the LORD had given him. All the people answered with one voice, “We will do everything the LORD has commanded.” 4 Then Moses carefully wrote down all the LORD ’s instructions. Early the next morning Moses got up and built an altar at the foot of the mountain. He also set up twelve pillars, one for each of the twelve tribes of Israel. 5 Then he sent some of the young Israelite men to present burnt offerings and to sacrifice bulls as peace offerings to the LORD . 6 Moses drained half the blood from these animals into basins. The other half he splattered against the altar. 7 Then he took the Book of the Covenant and read it aloud to the people. Again they all responded, “We will do everything the LORD has commanded. We will obey.” 8 Then Moses took the blood from the basins and splattered it over the people, declaring, “Look, this blood confirms the covenant the LORD has made with you in giving you these instructions.” 9 Then Moses, Aaron, Nadab, Abihu, and the seventy elders of Israel climbed up the mountain. 10 There they saw the God of Israel. Under his feet there seemed to be a surface of brilliant blue lapis lazuli, as clear as the sky itself. 11 And though these nobles of Israel gazed upon God, he did not destroy them. In fact, they ate a covenant meal, eating and drinking in his presence! 12 Then the LORD said to Moses, “Come up to me on the mountain. Stay there, and I will give you the tablets of stone on which I have inscribed the instructions and commands so you can teach the people.” 13 So Moses and his assistant Joshua set out, and Moses climbed up the mountain of God. 14 Moses told the elders, “Stay here and wait for us until we come back. Aaron and Hur are here with you. If anyone has a dispute while I am gone, consult with them.” 15 Then Moses climbed up the mountain, and the cloud covered it. 16 And the glory of the LORD settled down on Mount Sinai, and the cloud covered it for six days. On the seventh day the LORD called to Moses from inside the cloud. 17 To the Israelites at the foot of the mountain, the glory of the LORD appeared at the summit like a consuming fire. 18 Then Moses disappeared into the cloud as he climbed higher up the mountain. He remained on the mountain forty days and forty nights.

A Moment

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“Never underestimate the places and spaces God puts you in because it only takes a moment to change a life.”

TB

On the Job

Picking up your cross and following Christ isn’t easy; if it were, there would be no reason for Him. We all have jobs to do, news to share, encouragement to give, and accountability to convey and receive. It takes an honest day’s work to build your relationship with God. In that honest work, we get to see how the Body of Christ works together.

In the Work

As you grow with Christ, you will begin to see His wonders in the work. Friends, God is wise in that He will show you miraculous things if you put in the time and effort. More to the point, He will also show you how the seeds of love that you sow into your brothers and sisters grow. All it takes is a moment and obedience.

Today’s Question

Are you putting in the work to sow seeds?

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Exodus 23

1 “You must not pass along false rumors. You must not cooperate with evil people by lying on the witness stand. 2 “You must not follow the crowd in doing wrong. When you are called to testify in a dispute, do not be swayed by the crowd to twist justice. 3 And do not slant your testimony in favor of a person just because that person is poor. 4 “If you come upon your enemy’s ox or donkey that has strayed away, take it back to its owner. 5 If you see that the donkey of someone who hates you has collapsed under its load, do not walk by. Instead, stop and help. 6 “In a lawsuit, you must not deny justice to the poor. 7 “Be sure never to charge anyone falsely with evil. Never sentence an innocent or blameless person to death, for I never declare a guilty person to be innocent. 8 “Take no bribes, for a bribe makes you ignore something that you clearly see. A bribe makes even a righteous person twist the truth. 9 “You must not oppress foreigners. You know what it’s like to be a foreigner, for you yourselves were once foreigners in the land of Egypt. 10 “Plant and harvest your crops for six years, 11 but let the land be renewed and lie uncultivated during the seventh year. Then let the poor among you harvest whatever grows on its own. Leave the rest for wild animals to eat. The same applies to your vineyards and olive groves. 12 “You have six days each week for your ordinary work, but on the seventh day you must stop working. This gives your ox and your donkey a chance to rest. It also allows your slaves and the foreigners living among you to be refreshed. 13 “Pay close attention to all my instructions. You must not call on the name of any other gods. Do not even speak their names. 14 “Each year you must celebrate three festivals in my honor. 15 First, celebrate the Festival of Unleavened Bread. For seven days the bread you eat must be made without yeast, just as I commanded you. Celebrate this festival annually at the appointed time in early spring, in the month of Abib, for that is the anniversary of your departure from Egypt. No one may appear before me without an offering. 16 “Second, celebrate the Festival of Harvest, when you bring me the first crops of your harvest. “Finally, celebrate the Festival of the Final Harvest at the end of the harvest season, when you have harvested all the crops from your fields. 17 At these three times each year, every man in Israel must appear before the Sovereign, the LORD . 18 “You must not offer the blood of my sacrificial offerings together with any baked goods containing yeast. And do not leave the fat from the festival offerings until the next morning. 19 “As you harvest your crops, bring the very best of the first harvest to the house of the LORD your God. “You must not cook a young goat in its mother’s milk. 20 “See, I am sending an angel before you to protect you on your journey and lead you safely to the place I have prepared for you. 21 Pay close attention to him, and obey his instructions. Do not rebel against him, for he is my representative, and he will not forgive your rebellion. 22 But if you are careful to obey him, following all my instructions, then I will be an enemy to your enemies, and I will oppose those who oppose you. 23 For my angel will go before you and bring you into the land of the Amorites, Hittites, Perizzites, Canaanites, Hivites, and Jebusites, so you may live there. And I will destroy them completely. 24 You must not worship the gods of these nations or serve them in any way or imitate their evil practices. Instead, you must utterly destroy them and smash their sacred pillars. 25 “You must serve only the LORD your God. If you do, I will bless you with food and water, and I will protect you from illness. 26 There will be no miscarriages or infertility in your land, and I will give you long, full lives. 27 “I will send my terror ahead of you and create panic among all the people whose lands you invade. I will make all your enemies turn and run. 28 I will send terror ahead of you to drive out the Hivites, Canaanites, and Hittites. 29 But I will not drive them out in a single year, because the land would become desolate and the wild animals would multiply and threaten you. 30 I will drive them out a little at a time until your population has increased enough to take possession of the land. 31 And I will fix your boundaries from the Red Sea to the Mediterranean Sea, and from the eastern wilderness to the Euphrates River. I will hand over to you the people now living in the land, and you will drive them out ahead of you. 32 “Make no treaties with them or their gods. 33 They must not live in your land, or they will cause you to sin against me. If you serve their gods, you will be caught in the trap of idolatry.”

Wither

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“Do not let your growth in Christ wither over superficial nonsense.”

TB

Spilled Milk

There will be times where you’re so caught up in being offended by your neighbor that you forget the favor that God has so graciously provided you. Friends, don’t allow the fake tricks of the enemy to cause you to stunt your blessings.

Look Within

Just because there is cause for offense does not mean you should fall into its snare. More to the point, if you grow upset over the bad things that happen to you, you fail to acknowledge the great things that came from the hand of God. So when in doubt, count your blessings.

Today’s Question

Are the things of today that bother you minimizing the grace that God has given you?

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Exodus 22

1 “If someone steals an ox or sheep and then kills or sells it, the thief must pay back five oxen for each ox stolen, and four sheep for each sheep stolen. 2 “If a thief is caught in the act of breaking into a house and is struck and killed in the process, the person who killed the thief is not guilty of murder. 3 But if it happens in daylight, the one who killed the thief is guilty of murder. “A thief who is caught must pay in full for everything he stole. If he cannot pay, he must be sold as a slave to pay for his theft. 4 If someone steals an ox or a donkey or a sheep and it is found in the thief’s possession, then the thief must pay double the value of the stolen animal. 5 “If an animal is grazing in a field or vineyard and the owner lets it stray into someone else’s field to graze, then the animal’s owner must pay compensation from the best of his own grain or grapes. 6 “If you are burning thornbushes and the fire gets out of control and spreads into another person’s field, destroying the sheaves or the uncut grain or the whole crop, the one who started the fire must pay for the lost crop. 7 “Suppose someone leaves money or goods with a neighbor for safekeeping, and they are stolen from the neighbor’s house. If the thief is caught, the compensation is double the value of what was stolen. 8 But if the thief is not caught, the neighbor must appear before God, who will determine if he stole the property. 9 “Suppose there is a dispute between two people who both claim to own a particular ox, donkey, sheep, article of clothing, or any lost property. Both parties must come before God, and the person whom God declares guilty must pay double compensation to the other. 10 “Now suppose someone leaves a donkey, ox, sheep, or any other animal with a neighbor for safekeeping, but it dies or is injured or is taken away, and no one sees what happened. 11 The neighbor must then take an oath in the presence of the LORD . If the LORD confirms that the neighbor did not steal the property, the owner must accept the verdict, and no payment will be required. 12 But if the animal was indeed stolen, the guilty person must pay compensation to the owner. 13 If it was torn to pieces by a wild animal, the remains of the carcass must be shown as evidence, and no compensation will be required. 14 “If someone borrows an animal from a neighbor and it is injured or dies when the owner is absent, the person who borrowed it must pay full compensation. 15 But if the owner was present, no compensation is required. And no compensation is required if the animal was rented, for this loss is covered by the rental fee. 16 “If a man seduces a virgin who is not engaged to anyone and has sex with her, he must pay the customary bride price and marry her. 17 But if her father refuses to let him marry her, the man must still pay him an amount equal to the bride price of a virgin. 18 “You must not allow a sorceress to live. 19 “Anyone who has sexual relations with an animal must certainly be put to death. 20 “Anyone who sacrifices to any god other than the LORD must be destroyed. 21 “You must not mistreat or oppress foreigners in any way. Remember, you yourselves were once foreigners in the land of Egypt. 22 “You must not exploit a widow or an orphan. 23 If you exploit them in any way and they cry out to me, then I will certainly hear their cry. 24 My anger will blaze against you, and I will kill you with the sword. Then your wives will be widows and your children fatherless. 25 “If you lend money to any of my people who are in need, do not charge interest as a money lender would. 26 If you take your neighbor’s cloak as security for a loan, you must return it before sunset. 27 This coat may be the only blanket your neighbor has. How can a person sleep without it? If you do not return it and your neighbor cries out to me for help, then I will hear, for I am merciful. 28 “You must not dishonor God or curse any of your rulers. 29 “You must not hold anything back when you give me offerings from your crops and your wine. “You must give me your firstborn sons. 30 “You must also give me the firstborn of your cattle, sheep, and goats. But leave the newborn animal with its mother for seven days; then give it to me on the eighth day. 31 “You must be my holy people. Therefore, do not eat any animal that has been torn up and killed by wild animals. Throw it to the dogs.

Consider

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“Consider the joy of knowing Christ as you endure hardships and longsuffering.”

TB

Easy Street

I’ll be honest, many want the perks of knowing Christ, but they don’t want the work and longsuffering that comes with it. We cannot appreciate or know Him without enduring the trials and tribulations that come with walking the narrow path. More to the point, you cannot appreciate God’s Gift without understanding what it’s truly saving you from.

Joyful Endeavor

While we may experience discomfort, frustration, pain, and discouragement, these temporary ills pale in comparison to the joyful endeavor of really knowing God. When you know Him, those crappy days turn into gladness and praise because even in setbacks, you know they magnify the Truth of His word. So endure your trials with Joy as they bring you closer to Christ.

Today’s Question

Are you looking for the rewards without the effort?

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Exodus 21

1 “These are the regulations you must present to Israel. 2 “If you buy a Hebrew slave, he may serve for no more than six years. Set him free in the seventh year, and he will owe you nothing for his freedom. 3 If he was single when he became your slave, he shall leave single. But if he was married before he became a slave, then his wife must be freed with him. 4 “If his master gave him a wife while he was a slave and they had sons or daughters, then only the man will be free in the seventh year, but his wife and children will still belong to his master. 5 But the slave may declare, ‘I love my master, my wife, and my children. I don’t want to go free.’ 6 If he does this, his master must present him before God. Then his master must take him to the door or doorpost and publicly pierce his ear with an awl. After that, the slave will serve his master for life. 7 “When a man sells his daughter as a slave, she will not be freed at the end of six years as the men are. 8 If she does not satisfy her owner, he must allow her to be bought back again. But he is not allowed to sell her to foreigners, since he is the one who broke the contract with her. 9 But if the slave’s owner arranges for her to marry his son, he may no longer treat her as a slave but as a daughter. 10 “If a man who has married a slave wife takes another wife for himself, he must not neglect the rights of the first wife to food, clothing, and sexual intimacy. 11 If he fails in any of these three obligations, she may leave as a free woman without making any payment. 12 “Anyone who assaults and kills another person must be put to death. 13 But if it was simply an accident permitted by God, I will appoint a place of refuge where the slayer can run for safety. 14 However, if someone deliberately kills another person, then the slayer must be dragged even from my altar and be put to death. 15 “Anyone who strikes father or mother must be put to death. 16 “Kidnappers must be put to death, whether they are caught in possession of their victims or have already sold them as slaves. 17 “Anyone who dishonors father or mother must be put to death. 18 “Now suppose two men quarrel, and one hits the other with a stone or fist, and the injured person does not die but is confined to bed. 19 If he is later able to walk outside again, even with a crutch, the assailant will not be punished but must compensate his victim for lost wages and provide for his full recovery. 20 “If a man beats his male or female slave with a club and the slave dies as a result, the owner must be punished. 21 But if the slave recovers within a day or two, then the owner shall not be punished, since the slave is his property. 22 “Now suppose two men are fighting, and in the process they accidentally strike a pregnant woman so she gives birth prematurely. If no further injury results, the man who struck the woman must pay the amount of compensation the woman’s husband demands and the judges approve. 23 But if there is further injury, the punishment must match the injury: a life for a life, 24 an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth, a hand for a hand, a foot for a foot, 25 a burn for a burn, a wound for a wound, a bruise for a bruise. 26 “If a man hits his male or female slave in the eye and the eye is blinded, he must let the slave go free to compensate for the eye. 27 And if a man knocks out the tooth of his male or female slave, he must let the slave go free to compensate for the tooth. 28 “If an ox gores a man or woman to death, the ox must be stoned, and its flesh may not be eaten. In such a case, however, the owner will not be held liable. 29 But suppose the ox had a reputation for goring, and the owner had been informed but failed to keep it under control. If the ox then kills someone, it must be stoned, and the owner must also be put to death. 30 However, the dead person’s relatives may accept payment to compensate for the loss of life. The owner of the ox may redeem his life by paying whatever is demanded. 31 “The same regulation applies if the ox gores a boy or a girl. 32 But if the ox gores a slave, either male or female, the animal’s owner must pay the slave’s owner thirty silver coins, and the ox must be stoned. 33 “Suppose someone digs or uncovers a pit and fails to cover it, and then an ox or a donkey falls into it. 34 The owner of the pit must pay full compensation to the owner of the animal, but then he gets to keep the dead animal. 35 “If someone’s ox injures a neighbor’s ox and the injured ox dies, then the two owners must sell the live ox and divide the price equally between them. They must also divide the dead animal. 36 But if the ox had a reputation for goring, yet its owner failed to keep it under control, he must pay full compensation—a live ox for the dead one—but he may keep the dead ox.

Rather

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“Ask God what He wants for you today rather than deferring to what you want.”

TB

Not

We know not because we ask not. We also do not. Many of us desire God’s grace and gifts without actually developing a relationship with Him. The reality is, the relationship itself is more precious than any perks of this world that He could give to you. Instead of trying to steer the ship, ask God for direction.

Now

If you don’t know God, now is the time to do so. Friends, make no mistake; God is real. As such, everything He has created is real too. Stop hiding behind the half-truths that justify your wayward behavior. Like any good parent, God will correct His children. Just be sure that you are one that He acknowledges.

Today’s Question

Would you rather listen to the Creator or those destined for judgment?

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Exodus 20

1 Then God gave the people all these instructions : 2 “I am the LORD your God, who rescued you from the land of Egypt, the place of your slavery. 3 “You must not have any other god but me. 4 “You must not make for yourself an idol of any kind or an image of anything in the heavens or on the earth or in the sea. 5 You must not bow down to them or worship them, for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God who will not tolerate your affection for any other gods. I lay the sins of the parents upon their children; the entire family is affected—even children in the third and fourth generations of those who reject me. 6 But I lavish unfailing love for a thousand generations on those who love me and obey my commands. 7 “You must not misuse the name of the LORD your God. The LORD will not let you go unpunished if you misuse his name. 8 “Remember to observe the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. 9 You have six days each week for your ordinary work, 10 but the seventh day is a Sabbath day of rest dedicated to the LORD your God. On that day no one in your household may do any work. This includes you, your sons and daughters, your male and female servants, your livestock, and any foreigners living among you. 11 For in six days the LORD made the heavens, the earth, the sea, and everything in them; but on the seventh day he rested. That is why the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and set it apart as holy. 12 “Honor your father and mother. Then you will live a long, full life in the land the LORD your God is giving you. 13 “You must not murder. 14 “You must not commit adultery. 15 “You must not steal. 16 “You must not testify falsely against your neighbor. 17 “You must not covet your neighbor’s house. You must not covet your neighbor’s wife, male or female servant, ox or donkey, or anything else that belongs to your neighbor.” 18 When the people heard the thunder and the loud blast of the ram’s horn, and when they saw the flashes of lightning and the smoke billowing from the mountain, they stood at a distance, trembling with fear. 19 And they said to Moses, “You speak to us, and we will listen. But don’t let God speak directly to us, or we will die!” 20 “Don’t be afraid,” Moses answered them, “for God has come in this way to test you, and so that your fear of him will keep you from sinning!” 21 As the people stood in the distance, Moses approached the dark cloud where God was. 22 And the LORD said to Moses, “Say this to the people of Israel: You saw for yourselves that I spoke to you from heaven. 23 Remember, you must not make any idols of silver or gold to rival me. 24 “Build for me an altar made of earth, and offer your sacrifices to me—your burnt offerings and peace offerings, your sheep and goats, and your cattle. Build my altar wherever I cause my name to be remembered, and I will come to you and bless you. 25 If you use stones to build my altar, use only natural, uncut stones. Do not shape the stones with a tool, for that would make the altar unfit for holy use. 26 And do not approach my altar by going up steps. If you do, someone might look up under your clothing and see your nakedness.