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Exodus 19:16-21:21

God sets boundaries for us not because He is some kind of control freak, but because He loves us and planned the best for us in eternity. If we do not cross the boundaries the negative cause and effects of law breaking does not come into existence.

And you will set boundaries for the people all around, saying, "Take heed to yourselves not to go up on the mountain nor touch its edge. Whoever touches the mountain will surely be put to death! (Exodus 19:12 NET.)

Ever since “In the beginning …” God has placed boundaries in his creation. The entire first chapter of Genesis God is setting boundaries. In the garden, God tells man, "You may freely eat fruit from every tree of the orchard, but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will surely die." (Genesis 2:15-17 NET.)

The Ten Commandments are boundaries for righteous living upon the earth and if crossed, there are consequences. Maybe we look at these boundaries wrongly. If we see them as just a list of ten things not to do, then they are just a burdensome list of do nots. However, if we see them as a safety net to keep us snug and warm provided by a Father who loves us dearly, then the burdensome nature of a bunch of dos and don’ts cease. If we fully understand that God’s desire is to meet every one of our needs, we will wait on Him and not try to get it ourselves.

As for prayer postures, Mike, the postures you present all have to do with one thing, submission, the body language takes on the posture of submission. Raised hands indicate surrender to God. When someone points a gun to our heads and says, “Stick ‘um up,” we submit to the authority of the one holding the gun. Lying face down on the floor/ground or assuming the position of kneeling, means you are acknowledging the One who is Over All. Sadly, these postures can all be choreographed to give the appearance of submission and to impress the crowd, but either way, sincere or show, God knows the heart.

Interesting how the commonality of all four readings flows forth from the scriptures and that is submission. Whether in body language, prayer posture, wrongly choosing to submit to man’s laws over God’s, and submitting to words of wisdom, God’s Word, Old or New Testament is the same message presented from different perspectives.

It is said that we all have different learning styles and God covers them all in His Word. Because He created us to have those different styles, God is not a one-size fits all kind of Guy, He meets everyone at their point of need and at their ability.

Grace and peace,
Ramona

When I read about the uncut stone for an alter, I think of focusing on God and what He has created and not what man has made.

During prayer/quiet time I bow my head and close my eyes but I also pray all day long, with eyes open and busy doing whatever I'm doing.

Yes, God's teachings is my most precious possession and Jesus, being the embodiment of those teachings. Psalm 1 is one of my favorite chapters and in verse 2 it says for us to delight in His Laws. Also, John 1:14 "and The Word was made flesh"!

Yes, the 10 Commandments are important to me because they are from God!

I agree wholeheartedly with Carol about the 10 Commandments, especially since Jesus reaffirmed the importance of them when he was on earth.

I love how Jesus essentially summarizes the 10 Commandments -- reference Mt 22:34-40 in yesterday's reading:
34 Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. 35 One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: 36 ‘Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?’ 37 Jesus replied: ‘“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.”[a] 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: “Love your neighbour as yourself.”[b] 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.’

Godspeed,
Jeff

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