“In order to get your attention, God will allow uncomfortable situations to occur to shake you from your zombie-like state.”~TB
The next time you’re in public, like in a store, take a look and observe your surroundings. It’s not hard to see that we operate like zombies, mindlessly plugged into things, not fully present. Society is so numb with gadgets and the constant need for entertainment, it’s no wonder why people are struggling to feel something real. Everything is manufactured and designed for instant gratification! There are so many distractions, devices, and the like that keep us from truly knowing God. Friends, you have to get out of your mindless routines and seek the Lord with all of your attention and heart. If you desire an authentic relationship with God, don’t be surprised if certain things, behaviors or people are uprooted from your life in the process. It is called pruning for a reason.
Seasons of setbacks, discomfort, and loss aren’t always bad things or from the opposition. Comfort numbs us from thinking we need to change. Complacency is more dangerous than external forces, which is why God will shake things up for those who seek Him. In those moments, self-reflection is crucial for you to grow in Christ, because with the wrong set of eyes, you can mistake correction for persecution. It’s easy to become frustrated in your walk and wonder ‘why me’. However, if you can look past how you feel and look at your life with an honest heart, you will find that God is showing you something. Some of you are numb, getting by, forgoing your calling. Others are exploiting others’ work and not tilling their own soil. Wherever you are, if you’ve knocked on God’s door and He’s shaken you from your zombie life, rejoice! Look and listen carefully to learn what He is showing you.
Song of Solomon 4
1You are beautiful, my darling, beautiful beyond words. Your eyes are like doves behind your veil. Your hair falls in waves, like a flock of goats winding down the slopes of Gilead.
2Your teeth are as white as sheep, recently shorn and freshly washed. Your smile is flawless, each tooth matched with its twin.
3Your lips are like scarlet ribbon; your mouth is inviting. Your cheeks are like rosy pomegranates behind your veil.
4Your neck is as beautiful as the tower of David, jeweled with the shields of a thousand heroes.
5Your breasts are like two fawns, twin fawns of a gazelle grazing among the lilies.
6Before the dawn breezes blow and the night shadows flee, I will hurry to the mountain of myrrh and to the hill of frankincense.
7You are altogether beautiful, my darling, beautiful in every way.
8Come with me from Lebanon, my bride, come with me from Lebanon. Come down from Mount Amana, from the peaks of Senir and Hermon, where the lions have their dens and leopards live among the hills.
9You have captured my heart, my treasure, my bride. You hold it hostage with one glance of your eyes, with a single jewel of your necklace.
10Your love delights me, my treasure, my bride. Your love is better than wine, your perfume more fragrant than spices.
11Your lips are as sweet as nectar, my bride. Honey and milk are under your tongue. Your clothes are scented like the cedars of Lebanon.
12You are my private garden, my treasure, my bride, a secluded spring, a hidden fountain.
13Your thighs shelter a paradise of pomegranates with rare spices— henna with nard,
14nard and saffron, fragrant calamus and cinnamon, with all the trees of frankincense, myrrh, and aloes, and every other lovely spice.
15You are a garden fountain, a well of fresh water streaming down from Lebanon’s mountains.
16Awake, north wind! Rise up, south wind! Blow on my garden and spread its fragrance all around. Come into your garden, my love; taste its finest fruits.
“Though we believe without seeing, there is nothing blind about following Jesus.”~TB
When you don’t have a relationship with God it’s easy to think that those who do just blindly follow the teachings of Christ. As if Christians live some cherry pie existence, blissfully and ignorantly enjoying life without troubles. Oh, but if they only knew. Having a an authentic relationship with Christ requires you to ask questions, have doubts, air grievances, complain, moan, mumble, etc. No, to follow Christ isn’t blind, it requires you to keep your eyes and ears open to experience the wisdom that only comes from Him.
The Truth is, though we cannot see in the natural world, God guides us spiritually, helping us to see in other ways. Through Him, we are connected to each other. Through those relationships, we can see how God impacts each and everyone of us. Of course, you must see, hear, and ask these things of God so that you too can see the patterns of His love through us. It is so important to have honest communication with your brothers and sisters in Christ, so that the babes develop their sight and that the wise don’t go blind from bitterness in the trenches. It is the Truth of the Lord that removes the scales of the world to see what is really going on.
Are you blinded by the world?
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Song of Solomon 3
1One night as I lay in bed, I yearned for my lover. I yearned for him, but he did not come.
2So I said to myself, “I will get up and roam the city, searching in all its streets and squares. I will search for the one I love.” So I searched everywhere but did not find him.
3The watchmen stopped me as they made their rounds, and I asked, “Have you seen the one I love?”
4Then scarcely had I left them when I found my love! I caught and held him tightly, then I brought him to my mother’s house, into my mother’s bed, where I had been conceived.
5Promise me, O women of Jerusalem, by the gazelles and wild deer, not to awaken love until the time is right.
6Who is this sweeping in from the wilderness like a cloud of smoke? Who is it, fragrant with myrrh and frankincense and every kind of spice?
7Look, it is Solomon’s carriage, surrounded by sixty heroic men, the best of Israel’s soldiers.
8They are all skilled swordsmen, experienced warriors. Each wears a sword on his thigh, ready to defend the king against an attack in the night.
9King Solomon’s carriage is built of wood imported from Lebanon.
10Its posts are silver, its canopy gold; its cushions are purple. It was decorated with love by the young women of Jerusalem.
11Come out to see King Solomon, young women of Jerusalem. He wears the crown his mother gave him on his wedding day, his most joyous day
“There’s a reason why fear is a main tactic of the devil. It’s effective, unless you double down on the truth.”~TB
The devil will implement all types of lies and situations to get you fearful of your destiny. Like a pretend boogeyman, he’ll get you to avert your gaze from the Lord and onto your fears. Friends, this is merely a distraction ploy. Fear is such a visceral and powerful emotion, but it holds no bearing on the truth. Yes, the feeling of fear is very real, but the reality of its effects are only as real as you allow them to be. The devil is banking on you to cower in a corner because if you turn on the light with the truth, you’d see there is nothing actually there. The truth is your friend and guiding light. Lean into it!
The truth is that while bad things happen, we can overcome them. The only person that wins when you lose heart is the opposition. Friends, I implore you to look closely at your fears. They are not serving you, they are hindering you. God has and will continue to be a guiding force, but only if you let Him. This is where the Bible really comes in handy. When you read on a consistent basis, you will see that people have faced and endured hardships since the dawn of time. Granted, the battlefield has transferred from the land and into our thoughts. Be vigilant in what you feed your mind. Let the word of God guide you in times of fear so you can avoid the fake taunts of an inconsequential boogeyman.
Have you read the Bible to light your way or are you still believing the lies of a boogeyman?
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1When the LORD brought back his exiles to Jerusalem, it was like a dream!
2We were filled with laughter, and we sang for joy. And the other nations said, “What amazing things the LORD has done for them.”
3Yes, the LORD has done amazing things for us! What joy!
4Restore our fortunes, LORD, as streams renew the desert.
5Those who plant in tears will harvest with shouts of joy.
6They weep as they go to plant their seed, but they sing as they return with the harvest.
“Set your mind on God to experience His Truth” ~TB
Your mind is a gift or a curse– depending on how you use it. You can choose to fill it with God’s wisdom, live an obedient life, and be kind to your neighbors. Or, you can fill it with filth, walk around mindlessly, preferring destruction over peace. Sure, those seem drastically different, but the Truth is living in or out of God’s Will Isdrastically different. Do not be fooled by the external lives of others. Only God can truly examine one’s heart. Work on your mind and don’t fall prey to the fake minds around you.
When you set your mind, thoughts, and actions of God you rely on His strength and wisdom and not your own. The impossible becomes possible because you understand that you need Him in everything that you are and everything that you do. Allowing God to steer your mind sets you up for the peace and joy He graciously offers. It is a gift like no other and humans are unable to recreate such things. When you set your mind on the things of the flesh, you welcome confusion, stupor, and chaos. Friends, the human mind is incapable of such a Holy Mindset. Rely on Him.
Is your mind set on God or do you have a fleshly mindset?
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1Praise the LORD ! Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good! His faithful love endures forever.
2Who can list the glorious miracles of the LORD ? Who can ever praise him enough?
3There is joy for those who deal justly with others and always do what is right.
4Remember me, LORD, when you show favor to your people; come near and rescue me.
5Let me share in the prosperity of your chosen ones. Let me rejoice in the joy of your people; let me praise you with those who are your heritage.
6Like our ancestors, we have sinned. We have done wrong! We have acted wickedly!
7Our ancestors in Egypt were not impressed by the LORD ’s miraculous deeds. They soon forgot his many acts of kindness to them. Instead, they rebelled against him at the Red Sea.
8Even so, he saved them— to defend the honor of his name and to demonstrate his mighty power.
9He commanded the Red Sea to dry up. He led Israel across the sea as if it were a desert.
10So he rescued them from their enemies and redeemed them from their foes.
11Then the water returned and covered their enemies; not one of them survived.
12Then his people believed his promises. Then they sang his praise.
13Yet how quickly they forgot what he had done! They wouldn’t wait for his counsel!
14In the wilderness their desires ran wild, testing God’s patience in that dry wasteland.
15So he gave them what they asked for, but he sent a plague along with it.
16The people in the camp were jealous of Moses and envious of Aaron, the LORD ’s holy priest.
17Because of this, the earth opened up; it swallowed Dathan and buried Abiram and the other rebels.
18Fire fell upon their followers; a flame consumed the wicked.
19The people made a calf at Mount Sinai ; they bowed before an image made of gold.
20They traded their glorious God for a statue of a grass-eating bull.
21They forgot God, their savior, who had done such great things in Egypt—
22such wonderful things in the land of Ham, such awesome deeds at the Red Sea.
23So he declared he would destroy them. But Moses, his chosen one, stepped between the LORD and the people. He begged him to turn from his anger and not destroy them.
24The people refused to enter the pleasant land, for they wouldn’t believe his promise to care for them.
25Instead, they grumbled in their tents and refused to obey the LORD .
26Therefore, he solemnly swore that he would kill them in the wilderness,
27that he would scatter their descendants among the nations, exiling them to distant lands.
28Then our ancestors joined in the worship of Baal at Peor; they even ate sacrifices offered to the dead!
29They angered the LORD with all these things, so a plague broke out among them.
30But Phinehas had the courage to intervene, and the plague was stopped.
31So he has been regarded as a righteous man ever since that time.
32At Meribah, too, they angered the LORD, causing Moses serious trouble.
33They made Moses angry, and he spoke foolishly.
34Israel failed to destroy the nations in the land, as the LORD had commanded them.
35Instead, they mingled among the pagans and adopted their evil customs.
36They worshiped their idols, which led to their downfall.
37They even sacrificed their sons and their daughters to the demons.
38They shed innocent blood, the blood of their sons and daughters. By sacrificing them to the idols of Canaan, they polluted the land with murder.
39They defiled themselves by their evil deeds, and their love of idols was adultery in the LORD ’s sight.
40That is why the LORD ’s anger burned against his people, and he abhorred his own special possession.
41He handed them over to pagan nations, and they were ruled by those who hated them.
42Their enemies crushed them and brought them under their cruel power.
43Again and again he rescued them, but they chose to rebel against him, and they were finally destroyed by their sin.
44Even so, he pitied them in their distress and listened to their cries.
45He remembered his covenant with them and relented because of his unfailing love.
46He even caused their captors to treat them with kindness.
47Save us, O LORD our God! Gather us back from among the nations, so we can thank your holy name and rejoice and praise you.
48Praise the LORD, the God of Israel, who lives from everlasting to everlasting! Let all the people say, “Amen!” Praise the LORD !
“Someone has to be brilliant in your family, so why can’t it be you with Christ shining in your life!” ~ Jon Barnes
God would rather you be hot or cold, good or bad, in or out, but this fake Christianity, false stuff, and man-made religious stuff that God does not respect or honor will not hold up in The Court of Pearly Gates!God would rather you follow Him, honor His ways, commandments, and laws through Jesus.
Interestingly enough, most of us are always following our stuff and we try to sprinkle a little God Dust over us as a cover-up, self-made, man-made tactical approach to damage control, hypocrisy, and lies.God’s Court System is bigger, better, and smarter than any court system in the Universe and beyond.There are no hung juries in Heaven with God as the Supreme Court Justice!
Fortunately, God understands our moves, motives, madness, and He has the best solutions to all of our problems, but will we listen to Him?God is the Chess Master and we are the pieces on the board.According to History, mankind has been evil since the beginning of time and notice how badly we have treated each other. Notice that it is the Goodness of God that sustains humanity and not we ourselves.
Can a stranger see the brilliant light of Christ shining in your life every day and anywhere?
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For the director of music. A maskil of David. When Doeg the Edomite had gone to Saul and told him: “David has gone to the house of Ahimelek.”
1Why do you boast of evil, you mighty hero? Why do you boast all day long, you who are a disgrace in the eyes of God?
2You who practice deceit, your tongue plots destruction; it is like a sharpened razor.
3You love evil rather than good, falsehood rather than speaking the truth.
4You love every harmful word, you deceitful tongue!
5Surely God will bring you down to everlasting ruin: He will snatch you up and pluck you from your tent; he will uproot you from the land of the living.
6The righteous will see and fear; they will laugh at you, saying,
7“Here now is the man who did not make God his stronghold but trusted in his great wealth and grew strong by destroying others!”
8But I am like an olive tree flourishing in the house of God; I trust in God’s unfailing love for ever and ever.
9For what you have done I will always praise you in the presence of your faithful people. And I will hope in your name, for your name is good.
“By effectively using the tools and talents God has given you, your ideas and work ethic will improve beyond your own capacity, when you walk with God!”
God will allocate all of the resources you will need to complete, organize, and share the Word of God to people everywhere.Just let your light shine by not living in the darkness of sin.Fight the temptations of old because now you have Jesus helping you out.If you don’t use Him as your main resource, you are doomed to fail. Your Tests will not break You!
When you are familiar with all of the materials in the Bible, you will enjoy re-reading the fun stories to see how much you have matured in God.Practicing your faith is like growing in grace, love, and understanding. Pay close attention to the materials God wants you to use.Learn from the Tests before you take and experience them yourself.Recognize your growth in God.
Write books about how God has helped you out over the years and proclaim the Goodness of God to all of your family, friends, and enemies.It is fun to document your progress, understanding, and service for the kingdom to help inspire others to do better.We are all tools in the hand of God and it is an honor to be of some good use to The Lord of All. Examine your own faith.
How can you be an effective tool and resource for God’s Kingdom, being so negative, with your broken tools and lack of work?
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5 “Call if you will, but who will answer you? To which of the holy ones will you turn? 2 Resentment kills a fool, and envy slays the simple. 3 I myself have seen a fool taking root, but suddenly his house was cursed. 4 His children are far from safety, crushed in court without a defender. 5 The hungry consume his harvest, taking it even from among thorns, and the thirsty pant after his wealth. 6 For hardship does not spring from the soil, nor does trouble sprout from the ground. 7 Yet man is born to trouble as surely as sparks fly upward.
8 “But if I were you, I would appeal to God; I would lay my cause before him. 9 He performs wonders that cannot be fathomed, miracles that cannot be counted. 10 He provides rain for the earth; he sends water on the countryside. 11 The lowly he sets on high, and those who mourn are lifted to safety. 12 He thwarts the plans of the crafty, so that their hands achieve no success. 13 He catches the wise in their craftiness, and the schemes of the wily are swept away. 14 Darkness comes upon them in the daytime; at noon they grope as in the night. 15 He saves the needy from the sword in their mouth; he saves them from the clutches of the powerful. 16 So the poor have hope, and injustice shuts its mouth.
17 “Blessed is the one whom God corrects; so do not despise the discipline of the Almighty.[a] 18 For he wounds, but he also binds up; he injures, but his hands also heal. 19 From six calamities he will rescue you; in seven no harm will touch you. 20 In famine he will deliver you from death, and in battle from the stroke of the sword. 21 You will be protected from the lash of the tongue, and need not fear when destruction comes. 22 You will laugh at destruction and famine, and need not fear the wild animals. 23 For you will have a covenant with the stones of the field, and the wild animals will be at peace with you. 24 You will know that your tent is secure; you will take stock of your property and find nothing missing. 25 You will know that your children will be many, and your descendants like the grass of the earth. 26 You will come to the grave in full vigor, like sheaves gathered in season.
27 “We have examined this, and it is true. So hear it and apply it to yourself.”
“Keep good records of your thoughts and actions so that you align your ways with God’s ways and refuse to follow the wicked ways of the devil and his false records.” ~ Jon Barnes
Use technology to organize and drive your projects into the future so that you can keep up with the plans God has for your life. Don’t be distracted by fake news and lies of old. Record music, books, songs, thoughts, ideas, and helpful ways to connect honestly with people. Be a blessing at warp speed.
Quickly drive out of your mess and into the light of success in God with wisdom, lessons, and speed. Stay there, since there is nothing else to see and do that is worth your time and energy. Spend your time driving around looking at what God has created for you to see all around the world. The hard drive is built inside of you. Don’t crash it.
God gives us the technology to enjoy, help, and serve others. By balancing your time and efforts with technology, you will be able to see and do more for the kingdom of God, people, and yourself. Delete corrupt and wasteful files, copies, and programs that are UnGodly. For the record, lifelong learning is a lifestyle of success with God so that your hard drive will never be hacked.
Do you have a track record of keeping good records and a clean Hard Drive?
10 [a]The document was ratified and sealed with the following names:
Nehemiah son of Hacaliah, and also Zedekiah.
2 The following priests:
Seraiah, Azariah, Jeremiah,3 Pashhur, Amariah, Malkijah,4 Hattush, Shebaniah, Malluch,5 Harim, Meremoth, Obadiah,6 Daniel, Ginnethon, Baruch,7 Meshullam, Abijah, Mijamin,8 Maaziah, Bilgai, and Shemaiah. These were the priests.
9 The following Levites:
Jeshua son of Azaniah, Binnui from the family of Henadad, Kadmiel,10 and their fellow Levites: Shebaniah, Hodiah, Kelita, Pelaiah, Hanan,11 Mica, Rehob, Hashabiah,12 Zaccur, Sherebiah, Shebaniah,13 Hodiah, Bani, and Beninu.
28 Then the rest of the people—the priests, Levites, gatekeepers, singers, Temple servants, and all who had separated themselves from the pagan people of the land in order to obey the Law of God, together with their wives, sons, daughters, and all who were old enough to understand—29 joined their leaders and bound themselves with an oath. They swore a curse on themselves if they failed to obey the Law of God as issued by his servant Moses. They solemnly promised to carefully follow all the commands, regulations, and decrees of the Lord our Lord:
30 “We promise not to let our daughters marry the pagan people of the land, and not to let our sons marry their daughters.
31 “We also promise that if the people of the land should bring any merchandise or grain to be sold on the Sabbath or on any other holy day, we will refuse to buy it. Every seventh year we will let our land rest, and we will cancel all debts owed to us.
32 “In addition, we promise to obey the command to pay the annual Temple tax of one-eighth of an ounce of silver[b] for the care of the Temple of our God.33 This will provide for the Bread of the Presence; for the regular grain offerings and burnt offerings; for the offerings on the Sabbaths, the new moon celebrations, and the annual festivals; for the holy offerings; and for the sin offerings to make atonement for Israel. It will provide for everything necessary for the work of the Temple of our God.
34 “We have cast sacred lots to determine when—at regular times each year—the families of the priests, Levites, and the common people should bring wood to God’s Temple to be burned on the altar of the Lord our God, as is written in the Law.
35 “We promise to bring the first part of every harvest to the Lord’s Temple year after year—whether it be a crop from the soil or from our fruit trees.36 We agree to give God our oldest sons and the firstborn of all our herds and flocks, as prescribed in the Law. We will present them to the priests who minister in the Temple of our God.37 We will store the produce in the storerooms of the Temple of our God. We will bring the best of our flour and other grain offerings, the best of our fruit, and the best of our new wine and olive oil. And we promise to bring to the Levites a tenth of everything our land produces, for it is the Levites who collect the tithes in all our rural towns.
38 “A priest—a descendant of Aaron—will be with the Levites as they receive these tithes. And a tenth of all that is collected as tithes will be delivered by the Levites to the Temple of our God and placed in the storerooms.39 The people and the Levites must bring these offerings of grain, new wine, and olive oil to the storerooms and place them in the sacred containers near the ministering priests, the gatekeepers, and the singers.
“We promise together not to neglect the Temple of our God.”
“Evil will take you on a journey and tour that looks so good on the outside, but in the end, the fire of eternity burns everything, including you forever.”~ Jon Barnes
Set up your tours with Christ so that you can sightsee, enjoy, and love what you are doing for God.Do the work with all of your heart and you will see the world from God’s perspective, helping others, and shining the light of God on the journey.
The Bible guides us through all of the places in the world telling us about the history and relevant information that you must read, share, and do during your personal life’s tour.These guided post, landmarks, readings, and stories will apply to every aspect of your life so that you can see what not to do and what to do.
The responsibility of learning, growing, sharing, and loving God’s life tour is your job and should not be taken lightly.Respect the tour, seeing all that you can with God guiding you and enjoy the beauty that is intended for you to see and experience.Your reward for being obedient will be eternally out of this world.
Are you enjoying your tour or are you being tortured by wickedness in high places?
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2 Chronicles 21
Jehoram Rules in Judah
21 When Jehoshaphat died, he was buried with his ancestors in the City of David. Then his son Jehoram became the next king.
2 Jehoram’s brothers—the other sons of Jehoshaphat—were Azariah, Jehiel, Zechariah, Azariahu, Michael, and Shephatiah; all these were the sons of Jehoshaphat king of Judah.[a]3 Their father had given each of them valuable gifts of silver, gold, and costly items, and also some of Judah’s fortified towns. However, he designated Jehoram as the next king because he was the oldest.4 But when Jehoram had become solidly established as king, he killed all his brothers and some of the other leaders of Judah.
5 Jehoram was thirty-two years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem eight years.6 But Jehoram followed the example of the kings of Israel and was as wicked as King Ahab, for he had married one of Ahab’s daughters. So Jehoram did what was evil in the Lord’s sight.7 But the Lord did not want to destroy David’s dynasty, for he had made a covenant with David and promised that his descendants would continue to rule, shining like a lamp forever.
8 During Jehoram’s reign, the Edomites revolted against Judah and crowned their own king.9 So Jehoram went out with his full army and all his chariots. The Edomites surrounded him and his chariot commanders, but he went out at night and attacked them[b] under cover of darkness.10 Even so, Edom has been independent from Judah to this day. The town of Libnah also revolted about that same time. All this happened because Jehoram had abandoned the Lord, the God of his ancestors.11 He had built pagan shrines in the hill country of Judah and had led the people of Jerusalem and Judah to give themselves to pagan gods and to go astray.
12 Then Elijah the prophet wrote Jehoram this letter:
“This is what the Lord, the God of your ancestor David, says: You have not followed the good example of your father, Jehoshaphat, or your grandfather King Asa of Judah.13 Instead, you have been as evil as the kings of Israel. You have led the people of Jerusalem and Judah to worship idols, just as King Ahab did in Israel. And you have even killed your own brothers, men who were better than you.14 So now the Lord is about to strike you, your people, your children, your wives, and all that is yours with a heavy blow.15 You yourself will suffer with a severe intestinal disease that will get worse each day until your bowels come out.”
16 Then the Lord stirred up the Philistines and the Arabs, who lived near the Ethiopians,[c] to attack Jehoram.17 They marched against Judah, broke down its defenses, and carried away everything of value in the royal palace, including the king’s sons and his wives. Only his youngest son, Ahaziah,[d] was spared.
18 After all this, the Lord struck Jehoram with an incurable intestinal disease.19 The disease grew worse and worse, and at the end of two years it caused his bowels to come out, and he died in agony. His people did not build a great funeral fire to honor him as they had done for his ancestors.
20 Jehoram was thirty-two years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem eight years. No one was sorry when he died. They buried him in the City of David, but not in the royal cemetery.
“Your life is an original copy of which you can learn and do by studying from the Master, God!” ~ Jon Barnes
The ability you develop from being focused and obedient is part of the reward system and building of your love, faith, and work ethic. Balancing your abilities, talent, and common sense can be a challenge when you are copying the wrong things, based on intellect only. God teaches you how not to be greedy. Copy God’s qualities.
As your light shines, execute the fundamentals of faith, not the flashy, flickering, fake motions of attention seekers. Let the message and actions of God’s light teach your DNA to follow and copy God’s teaching style and soothing answers. When properly executed, peace and joy will follow your mature execution of God’s standards in His Spiritual Education in your life.
Your health, opportunities, and decisions will look like God is walking with you. Your choices and your faith will get the work done to maintain who you are in God. Let your light shine to exalt the love of God in all things you do and copy His perfect Will with obedience and trust. Find ways to help with kindness, forgiveness, and quality work ethics of faith in God, while copying the Original Author of our Faith. Read to copy and exalt God in all of your ways.
When you shine a light on people, do they see your darkness instead?
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2 Samuel 2
David Anointed King of Judah
2 After this, David asked the Lord, “Should I move back to one of the towns of Judah?”
“Yes,” the Lord replied.
Then David asked, “Which town should I go to?”
“To Hebron,” the Lord answered.
2 David’s two wives were Ahinoam from Jezreel and Abigail, the widow of Nabal from Carmel. So David and his wives3 and his men and their families all moved to Judah, and they settled in the villages near Hebron.4 Then the men of Judah came to David and anointed him king over the people of Judah.
When David heard that the men of Jabesh-gilead had buried Saul,5 he sent them this message: “May the Lord bless you for being so loyal to your master Saul and giving him a decent burial.6 May the Lord be loyal to you in return and reward you with his unfailing love! And I, too, will reward you for what you have done.7 Now that Saul is dead, I ask you to be my strong and loyal subjects like the people of Judah, who have anointed me as their new king.”
Ishbosheth Proclaimed King of Israel
8 But Abner son of Ner, the commander of Saul’s army, had already gone to Mahanaim with Saul’s son Ishbosheth.[a]9 There he proclaimed Ishbosheth king over Gilead, Jezreel, Ephraim, Benjamin, the land of the Ashurites, and all the rest of Israel.
10 Ishbosheth, Saul’s son, was forty years old when he became king, and he ruled from Mahanaim for two years. Meanwhile, the people of Judah remained loyal to David.11 David made Hebron his capital, and he ruled as king of Judah for seven and a half years.
War between Israel and Judah
12 One day Abner led Ishbosheth’s troops from Mahanaim to Gibeon.13 About the same time, Joab son of Zeruiah led David’s troops out and met them at the pool of Gibeon. The two groups sat down there, facing each other from opposite sides of the pool.
14 Then Abner suggested to Joab, “Let’s have a few of our warriors fight hand to hand here in front of us.”
“All right,” Joab agreed.15 So twelve men were chosen to fight from each side—twelve men of Benjamin representing Ishbosheth son of Saul, and twelve representing David.16 Each one grabbed his opponent by the hair and thrust his sword into the other’s side so that all of them died. So this place at Gibeon has been known ever since as the Field of Swords.[b]
17 A fierce battle followed that day, and Abner and the men of Israel were defeated by the forces of David.
The Death of Asahel
18 Joab, Abishai, and Asahel—the three sons of Zeruiah—were among David’s forces that day. Asahel could run like a gazelle,19 and he began chasing Abner. He pursued him relentlessly, not stopping for anything.20 When Abner looked back and saw him coming, he called out, “Is that you, Asahel?”
“Yes, it is,” he replied.
21 “Go fight someone else!” Abner warned. “Take on one of the younger men, and strip him of his weapons.” But Asahel kept right on chasing Abner.
22 Again Abner shouted to him, “Get away from here! I don’t want to kill you. How could I ever face your brother Joab again?”
23 But Asahel refused to turn back, so Abner thrust the butt end of his spear through Asahel’s stomach, and the spear came out through his back. He stumbled to the ground and died there. And everyone who came by that spot stopped and stood still when they saw Asahel lying there.
24 When Joab and Abishai found out what had happened, they set out after Abner. The sun was just going down as they arrived at the hill of Ammah near Giah, along the road to the wilderness of Gibeon.25 Abner’s troops from the tribe of Benjamin regrouped there at the top of the hill to take a stand.
26 Abner shouted down to Joab, “Must we always be killing each other? Don’t you realize that bitterness is the only result? When will you call off your men from chasing their Israelite brothers?”
27 Then Joab said, “God only knows what would have happened if you hadn’t spoken, for we would have chased you all night if necessary.”28 So Joab blew the ram’s horn, and his men stopped chasing the troops of Israel.
29 All that night Abner and his men retreated through the Jordan Valley.[c] They crossed the Jordan River, traveling all through the morning,[d] and didn’t stop until they arrived at Mahanaim.
30 Meanwhile, Joab and his men also returned home. When Joab counted his casualties, he discovered that only 19 men were missing in addition to Asahel.31 But 360 of Abner’s men had been killed, all from the tribe of Benjamin.32 Joab and his men took Asahel’s body to Bethlehem and buried him there in his father’s tomb. Then they traveled all night and reached Hebron at daybreak.
“Sometimes we need to be provoked into doing the right things so that God can use our lives in His Plan for saving souls.” ~ Jon Barnes
Being a child of God with His protection does not give us the right to lie, cheat, and steal. People who do the opposite of what God stands for are not wise and will not become His chosen children for His Kingdom in Heaven.God will cut you off in your foolishness, wickedness, and blatant disobedience. You will not be protected unless you repent, change, and live your actions of faith.
God gives us what we need and He judges what we do with our responsibilities, time, actions, faith, and resources. It is our job to take care of ourselves, family, city, country, planet, and church showing examples of God’s light into the world. We teach the next generation how to connect to God by following the commandment, reading, writing, talking about the blessings and lifestyle God wants for us to have. We must choose the provisions and solutions given by God.
Procrastination is disobedience in disguise, which is a perfect excuse for the wicked behavior of laziness. When you ignore your responsibilities and work of faith for God, you have chosen the path of disobedience. Bad things tend to happen based on your poor choices because you will reap what you sow. Do what is right and benefit from God’s blessings or continue to be a liar, who is full of wickedness.
Is your soul saved or will you be like the many, who will find hell their home?
Enjoy The Reading
1 Samuel 10
Samuel Anoints Saul as King
10 Then Samuel took a flask of olive oil and poured it over Saul’s head. He kissed Saul and said, “I am doing this because the Lord has appointed you to be the ruler over Israel, his special possession.[a]2 When you leave me today, you will see two men beside Rachel’s tomb at Zelzah, on the border of Benjamin. They will tell you that the donkeys have been found and that your father has stopped worrying about them and is now worried about you. He is asking, ‘Have you seen my son?’
3 “When you get to the oak of Tabor, you will see three men coming toward you who are on their way to worship God at Bethel. One will be bringing three young goats, another will have three loaves of bread, and the third will be carrying a wineskin full of wine.4 They will greet you and offer you two of the loaves, which you are to accept.
5 “When you arrive at Gibeah of God,[b] where the garrison of the Philistines is located, you will meet a band of prophets coming down from the place of worship. They will be playing a harp, a tambourine, a flute, and a lyre, and they will be prophesying.6 At that time the Spirit of the Lord will come powerfully upon you, and you will prophesy with them. You will be changed into a different person.7 After these signs take place, do what must be done, for God is with you.8 Then go down to Gilgal ahead of me. I will join you there to sacrifice burnt offerings and peace offerings. You must wait for seven days until I arrive and give you further instructions.”
Samuel’s Signs Are Fulfilled
9 As Saul turned and started to leave, God gave him a new heart, and all Samuel’s signs were fulfilled that day.10 When Saul and his servant arrived at Gibeah, they saw a group of prophets coming toward them. Then the Spirit of God came powerfully upon Saul, and he, too, began to prophesy.11 When those who knew Saul heard about it, they exclaimed, “What? Is even Saul a prophet? How did the son of Kish become a prophet?”
12 And one of those standing there said, “Can anyone become a prophet, no matter who his father is?”[c] So that is the origin of the saying “Is even Saul a prophet?”
13 When Saul had finished prophesying, he went up to the place of worship.14 “Where have you been?” Saul’s uncle asked him and his servant.
“We were looking for the donkeys,” Saul replied, “but we couldn’t find them. So we went to Samuel to ask him where they were.”
15 “Oh? And what did he say?” his uncle asked.
16 “He told us that the donkeys had already been found,” Saul replied. But Saul didn’t tell his uncle what Samuel said about the kingdom.
Saul Is Acclaimed King
17 Later Samuel called all the people of Israel to meet before the Lord at Mizpah.18 And he said, “This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, has declared: I brought you from Egypt and rescued you from the Egyptians and from all of the nations that were oppressing you.19 But though I have rescued you from your misery and distress, you have rejected your God today and have said, ‘No, we want a king instead!’ Now, therefore, present yourselves before the Lord by tribes and clans.”
20 So Samuel brought all the tribes of Israel before the Lord, and the tribe of Benjamin was chosen by lot.21 Then he brought each family of the tribe of Benjamin before the Lord, and the family of the Matrites was chosen. And finally Saul son of Kish was chosen from among them. But when they looked for him, he had disappeared!22 So they asked the Lord, “Where is he?”
And the Lord replied, “He is hiding among the baggage.”23 So they found him and brought him out, and he stood head and shoulders above anyone else.
24 Then Samuel said to all the people, “This is the man the Lord has chosen as your king. No one in all Israel is like him!”
And all the people shouted, “Long live the king!”
25 Then Samuel told the people what the rights and duties of a king were. He wrote them down on a scroll and placed it before the Lord. Then Samuel sent the people home again.
26 When Saul returned to his home at Gibeah, a group of men whose hearts God had touched went with him.27 But there were some scoundrels who complained, “How can this man save us?” And they scorned him and refused to bring him gifts. But Saul ignored them.
[Nahash, king of the Ammonites, had been grievously oppressing the people of Gad and Reuben who lived east of the Jordan River. He gouged out the right eye of each of the Israelites living there, and he didn’t allow anyone to come and rescue them. In fact, of all the Israelites east of the Jordan, there wasn’t a single one whose right eye Nahash had not gouged out. But there were 7,000 men who had escaped from the Ammonites, and they had settled in Jabesh-gilead.