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Jesus himself defined 'fear the Lord' for us as 'worship the Lord' in Matt 4:10. He rebutted Satan by quoting Deut 6:13/10:20. Instead of 'fear the Lord' as in the Deut verses, He replaced the phrase with 'worship the Lord' instead.

As for the tearing of the veil, although traditional thought on this is that the veil was torn so now man can approach God freely, I tend to think it as God coming out to us instead. The mental image I have is that of God tearing the veil from within the Holy of Holies and stepping out from there. Previously, man has to approach God, who is (in a sense) 'confined' at the Holy of Holies. Now, following the death and resurrection of Christ, the Spirit of God is poured out among believers and dwells in everyone of us. So isn't it more like God coming out to join us?

Just my thoughts.

I think Angela is absolutely right.

"There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love." (1 John 18 TNIV)

I really think we need to allow ourselves the freedom that Jesus died for to give us.

Of course we need to hold God in the highest regard and try to honor the ten commandments. But God wants us to be perfect, and only His love will accomplish that in us.

Jesus was for the first time separated from His father because He carried our sins.I think more than the excruciation pain of the cross,the mockery and abandon of His disciples,being separated even for a little while from His father was a huge blow to Jesus.
By his sacrifice,the old covenant that offered only the atonement of sin through the blood of animals was forever fulfiled by the blood of Jesus.The veil that stopped us from being in a relationship personally with the Father was done away with.Jesus paid the price of our sin on the cross so we may come into a relationship with the God,not only that...HE also interceeds for us as our high priest!..........................................................................
Mae,praise God for your family,as I read today's psalms"I sought the LORD, and he answered me;
he delivered me from all my fears."I thought of what great joy it is when a new believer joins our family,when it happens to be your husband and an answer to your prayers I guess your heart wants to leap out of your chest for joy:)
This psalm also makes me think that God's ways are not ours....David had to put on a humilitating show(my opinion)to escape Abimelech,yet he saw this as deliverance from God....maybe it was....David was still a man after God's own heart....I pray we all keep on searching for God's own heart.
God bless you all

Thank you so much for this one year Bible reading. I just love reading the readings and also the commentaries. I have always read the Bible but have missed some parts. Thia is so wonderful. Joan

Exodus 35

"and everyone who was willing and whose heart moved him came and brought an offering to the LORD for the work on the Tent of Meeting, for all its service, and for the sacred garments." NIV

People who were willing and whose heart was moved provided the resoures - BUT - the skill and blueprint for the work was provided by the Lord.

Is it any different today? Believers who are willng and whose heart has been moved will go out and share the gospel. We (and the Word) are the natural resources - to take the place of prophets, angels, and signs and wonders.

But Salvation is of the Lord. The "work" is His. He provides the words people need to hear, and God draws people to Him.

[Note: I am not saying there are no signs and wonders today, but in general they have been replaced by the witness and testimony of the "believer".]

Today's reading I focused on:

What can happen when God's people give willingly?

I know one day I would like to hear, "Bring no more materials! You have already given more than enough."

Wouldn't that statement be awesome to hear? Knowing that everything that needed to brought in for a project was covered? Many times this happens, but rarely, if ever, do you hear it.

Matt 27:46b

"My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?"

Was Jesus separated from God? There have been many powerful Easter sermons about the "words from the cross" with emphasis on God's separation from Jesus.

I am not so sure. Can not find my post from last year or link to the VERY good article on this, but I have found another.

Something is different. This is the only time in the Gospels where Jesus has not referred to God as the "Father". So what is going on????

In these times when a Jewish person approached a rabbi on the street and asked him a question. The answer was usually the "first line" of a section (chapter) of Scripture (OT). The questioner was to go back and study the whole section to find his answer. Perhaps to save time from being bogged down on the street with questions, perhaps to force someone to study and reflect on God's Word - I don't really know.
[I did talk to an orthodox rabbi about this and he verified the practice].

"My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" is the first line from Psalm 22. It is a messianic psalm that describes the crucifixion and Jesus' feelings. It was written many hundreds of years before crucixion was invented as a form of execution.

Perhaps Jesus, ever the teacher, was citing this first verse so all those mocking him at the cross would go back to Psalm 22 and see it unfolding before their eyes. Then they might come to realize that Jesus was truly the Son of God. Perhaps Jesus, the evangelist, was giving his greatest sermon by just citing the line at the time of His physically and spiritually excruciating death. Remember it was not only the physical nature of the cross, but the bearing of repulsive sin, and feeling the whole of God's wrath that Christ felt on the cross.

So was Jesus feeling separated from God? I don't believe so - I believe Jesus felt distanced from God. Whether because of the mantle of sin that was between Him and the Father, or the Father actaully distancing Himself from Christ because of the sin. This happened often with David when he sinned, and is cited in the psalms.

[NOTE: It happens to us also when we sin. God distances himself from us and fellowship is broken. We then have to repent and confess our sins (not for forgivenss of the sin - that was done on the cross), and ask for forgiveness to be restored back into fellowship with God.]

So what scriptural basis do I have for this opinion? Actually it is also in Psalm 22.

Ps 22:1b "Why are you so far from saving me,
so far from the words of my groaning?" NIV

Ps22:11 "Do not be far from me,
for trouble is near
and there is no one to help." NIV

Ps22:19 "But you, O LORD, be not far off;
O my Strength, come quickly to help me." NIV

These verses indicat that God is "far off" but do not state or imply any separation.

In fact:
Ps22:24 "For he has not despised or disdained
the suffering of the afflicted one;
he has not hidden his face from him
but has listened to his cry for help." NIV

This verse does not indicate that God has turned His back to Jesus (as is often preached). He may have been distanced, but it was evident that when Jesus gave up his spirt the Father was in action.

This link is a good one-pager, giving five reasons why Christ was not separated from God. The reason I use is #2.
Soem pastors and some (or many) on this board may disagree. That is OK. Feel free to post (or email me) the reasons why you feel different. It is not an issue that would indicate unbelief - but it would underscore a person's understanding of the Trinity. Regardless, I am just putting it out there for people to consider.

Matt 27:52-53

Tombs broke open.

This is interesting, and people often want to know - how come there wasn't more written on this?

I don't know, but what is more interesting is there was not a hue and cry from the Romans or Jewish leadership about these verses. They certainly did not want to see the spread of "Christianity" ("The Way" as it was initially called). You would think, as some people were still around, at the time this Gospel was written, that someone would step up and say it isn't so. But History is silent on this issue.

"You can imagine the kind of testimony they had about Christ's resurrection. Why didn't they go into the city to testify until after Christ rose? Because 1 Corinthians 15:20 says, "Now Christ is risen from the dead and become the first fruits of them that slept." So they didn't begin to speak until after Christ rose from the dead.

I don't believe they spoke to anyone except those who already believed. There's no biblical evidence of Christ ever appearing after His resurrection to anyone other than believers. I'm sure the believers were thrilled to meet them. The risen saints would have testified that Christ was alive, guaranteeing the reality of resurrection for all believers. They became living proof of that guarantee." - John MacArthur
Guards at the tomb

Interesting how the enemies of Christ - Satan and the Pharisees were so intent on guarding the tomb. If it was not guarded, the claims of a "body" being stolen might have had more "legs". As so often happens, the plans of evil (those that revolt against God) in the end do nothing but serve God's plan.

The fact that the tomb was guarded in the end, gave indirect proof of Christ's resurrection :)

Reading Psalms was just wonderful!
34:1)I will praise the Lord at all times.
I will constantly speak his praises.
34:5)Those who look to him for help will be radiant with joy;
no shadow of shame will darken their faces.
34:7)For the angel of the Lord is a guard;
he surrounds and defends all who fear him.
34:9)Fear the Lord, you his godly people,
for those who fear him will have all they need.
So powerful! Wonderful!

Do you think it is possible to both love God and fear God at the same time? ~ Fearing God is a good thing. It's not fear in a way of being scared of Him. It's a good fear. Our pastor preached about it not too long ago. I've been going through my noted, but I can't find it. But it's good to fear God, in a healthy way. Not being scared of Him, but to fear Him in a way that you don't want to dissapoint Him. It's a relationship, just like with my dad. I don't want to dissapoint him, but if I do, he'll call me on it and we have a good talk about it. He only wants the best for me. And it's the same thing with God; He'll call us on it when we dissapoint Him. He wouldn't call you on it if He didn't love you. He'll correct us, and it's good that He does, that way we'll stay awake and aware. That's how we maintain our relationship with God.

I have to keep this short. I'm going to the International Bible Conference in Zwolle (North Holland), it's more than an hour drive. Not too bad ... We're leaving in an hour. I'm sooo excited! Pastor Paul Campbell from the US is going to preach tonight. I can't wait! If anyone wonders; I'm from the Potters House & Open Door. In Holland it's called "De Deur" (The Door).

Some thing that stood out in Exodus was how God didnt force anyone to do anything, it was if "they were willing". God never forces Himself on anyone, He desires a willing heart,...and i believe knowing n loviing the Lord, being right with Him, will giving us a willing heart. Just as He wont force anyone to take the free gift of salavation. (though i sometimes wish i could!). God loves a cheerful giver. If our heart/motive is reluctant or bitter at all (in giving to the Lord) we shouldn't bother b'cos its not that God needs us or our resources...He wants our hearts!
Matthew doesnt go into much explicit detail as the other gospels, but its still so powerful. and it hurts, it hurts to read my Lord endured this awful thing, n for me! I love the others gospels account of the repentative thief on the cross with Jesus.
I also noticed, the women followed Him, but where were the disciples?

This man Joseph, who was wealthy, had his own burial tomb reserved for himself. he wanted Jesus' body to bury in his own tomb and to wrap the body in fine linen. This man gave up his tomb for Jesus' body...hmm, I betcha he knew this tomb would be empty in 3 days anyway! =)

The curtain being torn in two is sooooo significant! That was the victory...we now have access to God the Father!!! But, oh what a price was paid! this wasnt cheap, this cost so much and if there were any other way to God, to heaven, Jesus wouldnt haved died! Some say, there are many roads that lead to heaven...what an insult to the price paid! the shedding of the blood of the Son! There is one way and He is it. Narrow minded? better beleive it. the Word says, "narrow is the road that leads to salvation and few shall find it".
There's a song I love called Liquid by Jars of Clay...great song... Jesus "didnt die for nothing!"

I love the Psalms, how comforting:
7 The angel of the LORD encamps around those who fear him,
and he delivers them.

8 Taste and see that the LORD is good;
blessed is the man who takes refuge in him.

9 Fear the LORD, you his saints,
for those who fear him lack nothing.

What an awesome promise.

In Proverbs, VERY wise and applicable to something personal on my heart, going on in my life:
7 "Whoever corrects a mocker invites insult; whoever rebukes a wicked man incurs abuse. 8 Do not rebuke a mocker or he will hate you; rebuke a wise man and he will love you."

Speaking of wisdom, I wanted to add to what we discussed yesterday on wisdom coming from the Word of God. Wisdom is revealed to us from God directly, the holy spirit revealing things to us. King Solomon prayed for wisdom, and look how God blessed him! we too can pray for wisdom. When Peter answered Jesus correctly when he said, "who do you say I am?' Jesus said, This was revealed to you by God.
Also, one of my fave verses is Luke 10:21... "At that time Jesus, full of joy through the Holy Spirit, said, "I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. Yes, Father, for this was your good pleasure".
The intellects were blinded, but those who had faith were given much wisdom.

God bestows knowledge, gifts, etc to His children that love and seek Him. we can read the BIble til we are blue in the face and be none the wiser, we need the spirit to reveal things to us. we need God to speak through His word to us! When I went to Israel, we had a tour guide who was very intelligent!! he was born in America and moved to israel, learned Hebew, studied the BIble, knew the BIBle very well, better then most Christains, yet he was an unbeliever. To him the Bible was more a history book. he knew everything there was to know about the history of the Bible. much knowledge, but No wisdom. the enemy blinded his eyes!
So we must seek, run, chase after, and desire wisdom! It comes from God alone and His word is the way which He speaks to us!

Its me again, haha...i didnt finish reading your blog b4 so i wanted to comment more. To fear God is to have a holy reverence to Him. We can fear things and not love them at all...i have a fear maybe of lions, I respect the fact they could kill me and i would fear being around one, but I have no love for them. With God its not a fear so terrifying that you are frightened out of your socks, its a holy fear, a holy reverence, but also a fear of His power and might.
Some say they are afraid of God and live life like you dont mean it (ive had non beleivers tell me they are scared of God but go on and live an ungodly life. is this fear?) this is fear of punishment for wrong...which is justifiable! But our fear isnt one of punishment, but more awe, reverence.
We who belong to Him are called saints! Do I feel like a saint? NO! would i walk around calling myself a saint? haha, NO! but in the Lord's eyes, we are His saints!

I feel its appropraite to rebuke someone when I feel the Lord's prompting. This requires discernment. I cant explain it really, its from God. and I need to make sure it IS from God, not from some sort of selfish hidden motive i have, but from Godly love!
For believers, we need to take caution, are we rebuking for the right reason? Some ppl are sin seekers, they go around rebuking ppl NOT out of a genuine concern for thats person spiritually, but out of perhaps jealousy, own self-disgust (projection). IN fact this has happened to me in the past week, i've been rebuked for things people projected onto me. They judged my heart and motives wrongly. this is not loving rebuke, this is fleshly rebuke and I did not recieve it bcos it wasnt of the Lord and I knew it.
There are times i have been rebuked and they were correct. Ive even been rebuked by nonbelievers concerning sprititual things and they were right! (ouch!!!!!). People who rebuke me out of love, where I feel the Lord is behind the rebuke, that I love! (tho at the time it hurts!!) But if its not from God, i can discern and see its their own problem that they are taking out on me. Should I rebuke them for that? sometimes i do, but i really have to wait for the promting of the Lord on this.

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