Contemplative Bible Reading

Some thoughts about Bible verses

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The Punishment of Dread

May 21st, 2017 · No Comments

Deuteronomy 11:25 (New Living Translation)

No one will be able to stand against you, for the Lord your God will cause the people to fear and dread you, as he promised, wherever you go in the whole land.

God is promising His people safety as they move forward into a new land. God will cause the people of the land to dread His people. The people of the land will fear God’s people. They will imagine that the worst will happen to them. They will have restless nights filled with nightmares.

This dread will lead to the downfall of the people of the land.

How awful it is to have God put a simple thought in the mind of man. How God accomplishes His will on earth is a mystery to us, yet let us never forget that God does accomplish His will through us  in ways we do not understand.

Please God, help me to submit to your will.

→ No CommentsTags: Deuteronomy · Old Testament

Showing Mankind Artistic Designs

May 20th, 2017 · No Comments

Numbers 8:4 (New Living Translation)

The entire lampstand, from its base to its decorative blossoms, was made of beaten gold. It was built according to the exact design the Lord had shown Moses.

The tabernacle and temple and all the decorations and furnishings were designed by God. God “had shown” these designs to Moses who passed them on to the builders.

How did God show artistic design to Moses?

This leads me on to wonder if God shows artistic designs to persons today? Does God plant thoughts in persons’ minds today? Where do the ideas originate?

I can’t “prove” any answers, but I believe that God and Satan put ideas into the minds of persons. We have the privilege and responsibility to accept or reject ideas.

Just a thought. (Where did that one come from?)

→ No CommentsTags: Numbers · Old Testament

Jehovah God in Action

May 14th, 2017 · No Comments

Genesis 12:17-20 (New Living Translation)

17 But the Lord sent terrible plagues upon Pharaoh and his household because of Sarai, Abram’s wife. 18 So Pharaoh summoned Abram and accused him sharply. “What have you done to me?” he demanded. “Why didn’t you tell me she was your wife? 19 Why did you say, ‘She is my sister,’ and allow me to take her as my wife? Now then, here is your wife. Take her and get out of here!” 20 Pharaoh ordered some of his men to escort them, and he sent Abram out of the country, along with his wife and all his possessions.

The first phrase above tells us that the LORD, a.k.a., YHWH or Jehovah took action. Because of what was happening with Sarai, Abram, and Pharaoh, Jehovah sent terrible plagues and caused great suffering on Pharaoh and his household.

Does God still act in this way today? Why not? I think God does still act.

The trouble is, I’m not smart enough to tell when God does these kinds of things or when my ego tells me that THOSE GUYS who NEED punishment are being punished by God. Of course this is all subjective on my part. And of course I’m usually being petty in all this. And of course I’m sort of sinning in all this in that hate enters my heart and I really wish secretly, but really wish hard that God would…

There I go again. I want to be God and not me. Please God, help me in my unbelief.

→ No CommentsTags: Genesis · Old Testament

The Law Before the Law

May 13th, 2017 · No Comments

Genesis 12:17-20 (New Living Translation)

17 But the Lord sent terrible plagues upon Pharaoh and his household because of Sarai, Abram’s wife. 18 So Pharaoh summoned Abram and accused him sharply. “What have you done to me?” he demanded. “Why didn’t you tell me she was your wife? 19 Why did you say, ‘She is my sister,’ and allow me to take her as my wife? Now then, here is your wife. Take her and get out of here!” 20 Pharaoh ordered some of his men to escort them, and he sent Abram out of the country, along with his wife and all his possessions.

Notice how Pharaoh was scared to death at the thought of having taken Abram’s wife. Notice how Pharaoh associate terrible plagues with how close he and his people came to taking Abram’s wife.

This all happened long before the Ten Commandments and the rest of The Law given in the Old Testament.

All people in all places at all times knew there was a code of behavior for people. Part of the code was that you didn’t take another person’s spouse.  What happened to that code of behavior. When did modern man, or post-post-post-modern or whatever we call ourselves man, forget this? And what are the consequences we suffer every day?

→ No CommentsTags: Genesis · Old Testament

Too Hard for the LORD?

May 7th, 2017 · No Comments

Genesis 18:11-14 (New Living Translation)

11 Abraham and Sarah were both very old by this time, and Sarah was long past the age of having children. 12 So she laughed silently to herself and said, “How could a worn-out woman like me enjoy such pleasure, especially when my master—my husband—is also so old?”

13 Then the Lord said to Abraham, “Why did Sarah laugh? Why did she say, ‘Can an old woman like me have a baby?’ 14 Is anything too hard for the Lord? I will return about this time next year, and Sarah will have a son.”

That’s life. Old women don’t have babies. Old men don’t care. When you are senile, that’s life, you don’t get better. If you are born with this or that, that’s life. There is no change.

Then we read verse 14 and, duh!, oh yeah, God.

People do become ill and die—too young. Not everyone experiences a healing that doctors cannot explain. Traffic accidents happen. This is a sinful world, and I read these verses and mumble about, “well, that was long ago in different circumstances and, you know, that stuff doesn’t happen with me, and God isn’t really interested in me, and so on and so on…”

Nothing is too hard for the LORD. That is still applicable today. Thank you God.

→ No CommentsTags: Genesis · Old Testament

Wholesome Thinking

May 6th, 2017 · No Comments

2 Peter 3:1 (New Living Translation)

This is my second letter to you, dear friends, and in both of them I have tried to stimulate your wholesome thinking and refresh your memory.

Peter tries to stimulate wholesome thinking.

This is a great goal of:

  • writing
  • speaking
  • conversing
  • living

Please God, help me to be a stimulator of wholesome thinking.

→ No CommentsTags: 2 Peter · New Testament

Beyond Change and Decay

April 30th, 2017 · No Comments

1 Peter 1:3-4 (New Living Translation)

3 All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is by his great mercy that we have been born again, because God raised Jesus Christ from the dead. Now we live with great expectation, 4 and we have a priceless inheritance—an inheritance that is kept in heaven for you, pure and undefiled, beyond the reach of change and decay.

Change can be nice. Things that don’t change can also be nice. If I am depending on something for retirement, for an inheritance, I really like the no change side.

There is a great expectation for an inheritance that is being kept in a safe place far beyond the reach of natural decay and man-inflicted damage.

Thank you God. Sometimes things that don’t change are wonderful.

→ No CommentsTags: 1 Peter · New Testament

Angels are Sent to Care

April 29th, 2017 · No Comments

Hebrews 1:14 (New Living Translation)

Therefore, angels are only servants—spirits sent to care for people who will inherit salvation.

Consider a literal consideration of the above. Angels are sent to earth to serve those who follow after Christ. Angels are here to care for the bride of Christ.

I like the sound of that. Perhaps I am being selfish here…

Then again…my mother cannot care for herself. There are persons about here who check on her all day long and care for her as best they can. Still, there are angels sitting in her room with her. I imagine they speak to her in a voice she can hear and understand. If I heard the voice, I doubt I would understand it as it is not intended for my care.

Again, perhaps I am reading this too literally. It does provide comfort, and that goes with the spirit of this verse and God’s use of angels.

→ No CommentsTags: Hebrews · New Testament

Missing the Whole Point

April 23rd, 2017 · No Comments

1 Timothy 1:6 (New Living Translation)

But some people have missed this whole point. They have turned away from these things and spend their time in meaningless discussions.

What was the point? See yesterday’s post. Today…people have turned away from love and put all their energies into meaningless discussions. “Let’s try to figure out what year Job lived. I don’t think you really know that, and that ignorance denies your faith in God, so…”

Really? Do you have a lot of time? Because you will need a lot of time to discuss all the things I don’t know. A few lifetimes worth of time, as there are A LOT OF THINGS I don’t know.

Is that a good use of time? I doubt it.

Let’s reset. Stop. Breathe. Look around the room. See all those people? They are all loved by God. What is my feeling towards them? Ah, something worthwhile that I can spend my time. God, help me to keep on point.

→ No CommentsTags: 1 Timothy · New Testament

The Purpose of Paul’s Instruction

April 22nd, 2017 · No Comments

1 Timothy 1:5 (New Living Translation)

The purpose of my instruction is that all believers would be filled with love that comes from a pure heart, a clear conscience, and genuine faith.

Paul writes a letter of encouragement and instruction to Timothy. The purpose of the letter is simple, well, maybe not simple, but Paul attempts to articulate it in a simple, understandable manner:

Love from the heart, the mind, and faith that Jesus of Nazareth was the Son of God anointed to take away the sins of the world. Paul writes it in fewer words.

Still, great words for everyone, everywhere in every time.

→ No CommentsTags: 1 Timothy · New Testament