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Isaiah 43:14-45:10

Mike you ask, “do we create idols of our own today?” I think as long as there are men and women walking the earth only when Jesus comes again will we stop creating our idols.

I’ve pondered for years why we love to create idols. My definition being anything submitted to and looked upon for deliverance and as a source of life and sustenance. We create our idols so we, by substitution, control the universe or in a smaller sphere, we control our own little universe. With an idol, we make up the rules of conduct and engagement. The problem comes in when everyone has their own little idol and they try to force others to bow down to what they have created. When that happens the strongest, manipulative, the one with the most human power, wins out.

Just when we think we have the answers given to us by a rock (crystals), mood rings, the government, along comes God and says, “Not so!”

24 The LORD, your Redeemer and Creator, says: "I am the LORD, who made all things. I alone stretched out the heavens. By myself I made the earth and everything in it. 25 I am the one who exposes the false prophets as liars by causing events to happen that are contrary to their predictions. I cause wise people to give bad advice, thus proving them to be fools. 26 But I carry out the predictions of my prophets! When they say Jerusalem will be saved and the towns of Judah will be lived in once again, it will be done! 27 When I speak to the rivers and say, `Be dry!' they will be dry. 28 When I say of Cyrus, `He is my shepherd,' he will certainly do as I say. He will command that Jerusalem be rebuilt and that the Temple be restored."

Just my thoughts.

Ephesians 3:1-21

Paul seems to be one of those “Get-up-and-go” kind of guys. He appears to want to take care of business in person whether to confront or to encourage. Paul was a hands-on kind of guy. So I am glad that Paul was constrained by the Holy Spirit by way of travel plans and yes, even prison. If Paul was not confined by these things how much of the New Testament would have been written and codified?

Some of us are going through trials, bad trials. Some of us desire to do things “For God,” yet find ourselves blocked in and seemingly shut out. But God may have other plans for us that will only be accomplished when our escape routes are blocked or destroyed.

Paul was able to write this wonderful explosive prayer in chains,

14 When I think of the wisdom and scope of God's plan, I fall to my knees and pray to the Father, 15 the Creator of everything in heaven and on earth. 16 I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will give you mighty inner strength through his Holy Spirit. 17 And I pray that Christ will be more and more at home in your hearts as you trust in him. May your roots go down deep into the soil of God's marvelous love. 18 And may you have the power to understand, as all God's people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love really is. 19 May you experience the love of Christ, though it is so great you will never fully understand it. Then you will be filled with the fullness of life and power that comes from God.
20 Now glory be to God! By his mighty power at work within us, he is able to accomplish infinitely more than we would ever dare to ask or hope. 21 May he be given glory in the church and in Christ Jesus forever and ever through endless ages. Amen.

Psalm 68:1-18

Ever wonder how loud it will be in heaven? I think the decibel level will be tremendous and we will have glorified ears so as not to destroy our eardrums. I get my clues from verses like this:

Sing praises to God and to his name!
Sing loud praises to him who rides the clouds.
His name is the LORD--
rejoice in his presence!

Ever forget where you are and start singing to God, loudly? I know I have and then looked sheepishly around me with embarrassment as folks look at my as if I’m crazy. Maybe I am crazy, crazy for God. I think it’s time I stop being embarrassed for singing out loud to God. I shouldn’t be any more embarrassed then those who argue or speak loudly on their cell phones so that everyone on the train can here them.

Proverbs 24:1-2

Truth be told we envy evil people because we want what they have. We want the things, the brashness, the boldness and the audacity to do what they do. Yet God provides boldness in Him and besides, God owns everything in the universe. For the Believer, God is our Dad,”… who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms in Christ. (Ephesians 1:3 NET.)

(Proverbs 28:1 KJVR) The wicked flee when no man pursueth: but the righteous are bold as a lion.

Grace and peace,

In Isaiah 45 the account of King Cyrus —-who God named 150 years before he was born,—-as His “right hand” Is amazing.
The prophet Jeremiah showed this pagan king the scripture and he did send the Jews back to their homeland. He gave them money for the trip and for the temple.
The account of the capture of Babylon is amazing—in Babylon, while Belshazzar was having a drunken party, defiling the temple goblets that has been taken when Jerusalem was sacked, and the Medes army surrounding them, the army dried up the River by diverting it and were able to go under the iron gates. Somehow the bronze double doors were open and they just walked in.
There can be no doubt in anyone’s mind that there is nothing impossible for our God

“That you may know that I, the LORD, Who call you by your name,
Am the God of Israel.
For Jacob My servant’s sake,
And Israel My elect,
I have even called you by your name;
I have named you, though you have not known Me.”

One day when large groups of people were walking along with him, Jesus turned and told them, “Anyone who comes to me but refuses to let go of father, mother, spouse, children, brothers, sisters—yes, even one’s own self!—can’t be my disciple. Anyone who won’t shoulder his own cross and follow behind me can’t be my disciple.
Luke 14:26
Family and traditions can be idols. Father/son/mother/daughter. Who holds onto traditions can become idols taking the place of God
Also Isaiah 43:25 “I am he who blots out your trangessions and remembers your son no more! We have a merciful Father!

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