We can get stuck over an opportunity lost, or in some failure. Or we can feel the feeling of regret and sorrow, accept what is, claim forgiveness and cleansing and go forward.
Posts Tagged ‘ Bethel ’
Instead of bemoaning their lot and wishing they had never enlisted in the Lord’s service, or thinking of how they could withdraw from it, these noble men, on the contrary, rejoiced and thanked God that they were accounted worthy to suffer in his name and for his cause. While not disposed to be obtrusive with their prayers and praises, they evidently felt that it would be proper that their fellow prisoners who would know something of their treatment, should know something also of how they received it, and of the grace of God which sustained them.
Awed by the communication from God, Jacob poured oil on the stone he had used for a pillow and made a vow. If God would bless him as promised and give him food and clothing so that he would return eventually to his father Isaac’s house in peace, he would give one tenth of all he got to the Lord. Jacob’s vow reveals that he had departed in haste from Isaac as soon as possible after the blessing, leaving possessions behind for fear that Esau would find out and kill him and taking few or no provisions with him. What little oil he took, he now poured out on the stone pillow. (He may have taken flour and oil, intending to knead and make cakes.) Jacob was in a perilous situation in trying to get to his destination. In anointing the stone, Jacob used what little he had to honor the situation. Similarly, Spikenard Mary anointed Jesus. Probably the oil was all Jacob had of worth, so he used it to show his appreciation.
The nation would be accursed and alienated from God if they did not find and punish with death the one(s) responsible for the sin. (The guilty party would be stoned and the corpse afterward burned.) This incident is a reminder of Ananias and Sapphira in the New Testament. Their sin was professing to give all to the Lord and then holding some back. It was not necessary to give all of their property to a communal arrangement, but when they said they did and were hypocritically keeping some, they sinned—and willfully. They were stealing from God because the property was promised to Him. The principle is stated in the fifth chapter of 1 Corinthians: “Put out from among yourselves that wicked person.” After a brother had intimacy with his father’s wife, the Corinthian ecclesia tolerated his presence in their midst. Not only did they fail to act, but they gloried in their false charity. The comparable punishment for stoning in the Old Testament is excommunication in the New Testament.
Why was God seeking vengeance against Nineveh—and also against the nominal Church systems, or Christendom, in the antitype? Judgment was merited because of wickedness and the accumulation of guilt in abusing and persecuting the Lord’s true followers. Also, Nineveh was the capital of Assyria, and several Assyrian kings were responsible for taking the ten tribes into captivity. Like a wolf, Assyria stole sheep (the ten tribes) from the flock, and the Lord keeps in memory acts that are committed against His own. While retribution may not be instant, and while it may seem that no punishment is forthcoming, the guilt is stored up.
We can fancy the attention which would be given to the Prophet’s message by the people of Israel as they would hear fall from his lips words descriptive of the troubles coming upon surrounding nations which were their enemies. But as the circle grew narrower and narrower, and as the weight of the Prophet’s testimony was found to be especially against themselves, we may be sure that there was intense indignation. If at first they shouted, “A true Prophet!” probably they afterwards gnashed upon him with their teeth.
Israeli politicians accuse president of ‘misrepresenting history’ in U.N. speech. The U.N. Security Council is traditionally considered hostile to Israel.
The term “occupation” routinely is used by the Palestinians as well as some countries hostile to the Jewish state in reference to Israel’s presence in the West Bank and Jerusalem. It is unusual for U.S. presidents to use the term.