Well, I am back in the Land of the living. I got a steroid shot yesterday so watch out! I’m firing on all cylinders! I still don’t have a voice but I can type. (No snarky comments about me not being able to talk.)
Leviticus 6:1 —7:89
The Vow of the Nazirite helps us understand how the non-priestly people of the Nation could consecrate themselves for a particular amount of time. They would do this out of devotion to the Lord, think of like an overflow of thankfulness. Or they would devote their children to this lifestyle, think of Sampson. (If you don’t know Sampson, don’t worry we will meet him soon.)
Look at the character of God here in this next part. He tells Aaron that whenever they bless the people the Lord Himself will bless them. He is so close to this nation and loves them so much that He will be there to bless them. I just love how His loving character comes through there.
Next is a kind of flash back to when the Tabernacle was anointed. You see this because of the wording in the fist line of the section, “On the day Moses set up the Tabernacle…” We have a recording that includes a lot of NUMBERS (see the book of numbers has a lot of numbers in it). Every tribe offered the same things. The exact offering is recorded to show that the Tribes were ALL IN! Moses then records that he spoke to the Lord in the Tabernacle and his voice was coming from the Mercy seat. I think this shows us that the Lord accepted their offering and acknowledges that they have followed his instructions to a T.
Giving to the Lord. It is such a sticky subject. It is the one area that I think shows our devotion to the Lord the clearest. With the story of the widow Jesus is teaching us that the amount doesn’t matter the heart behind it does. Think of it this way. Lets say I dropped a check for $10,000 into the offering box. You might be impressed by that. If you found out I made $30,000 a year you would be really impressed right? I would have just given 30% of my income away to the Lord! But lets say my income is $2,000,000. That is not as impressive because I only gave .005% of my income away. What Jesus is saying here is giving is not the issue, it’s the heart behind it. If you drop a big check but don’t feel the pinch is it really devotion to the Lord or is it showboating? The Pharisee’s had this all wrong. They like to float around and be big deals, but Jesus teaches us that the quiet act of the widow shows devotion. Just to add one more thing because Jesse and I teach Dave Ramsey’s FPU and I can’t help but plug that and what it teaches. Dave asks the question, “Does your budget reflect your beliefs?” Like if I sat down and went through your budget would I know that you are believer in Jesus? Ok, getting off the soap box now. Calm down I am not going to look at your budget!
Mark records the Olivet Discourse. Remember prepared people are not scared people. We learned that back in Matthew when we read this last month. Jesus uses the near and far prediction method to authenticate his message. His near prediction is the Temple will be destroyed, his far prediction is that He will return. The Temple is destroyed in 70 AD, so we can take it to the bank that He is coming back. What stuck out to me today was verse 9. “When these things begin to happen, watch out! You will be handed over to the local councils and beaten in the synagogues. You will stand trial before governors and kings because you are my followers, but this will be your opportunity to tell them about me.” BKC said that Mark recorded this specifically to encourage the Gentile believers who would be terrified to be arrested, it was to encourage them to trust the Lord. However it also applies to us.
I am sure you agree with me when I say the only thing it’s not ok to be these days is Christian. This persecution of Christians for our beliefs is actually what will spread the Gospel!! How cool is that? God is so loving that He wants our persecutors to hear the message! But look what Jesus left us to do! We will stand before people who don’t agree with us and preach His message under His power. YOU better make sure that your social media, your attitude, and your words don’t close the door to that opportunity. What if you get to stand in front of Trump, Hillary, Pelosi, or any other “governors and kings?” Will they listen to a word you have to say if you just lit them up on your Socials? Isn’t the issue really that souls need to be saved and the message of Jesus goes out? Can you put aside your “rightness” and not shut the door to being the one that brings the message that truly saves? We are supposed to think about others as better than ourselves remember? Ok, I am thinking the steroid shot I got is responsible for my soap boxes today. Lets move on before I lose all my friends.
Psalm 49: 1-20
I love this psalm! He tells us to listen carefully because he is going to solve a riddle for us. The riddle is the age old question of why the wicked prosper. He tells us its all a show because in the end the godly ones who were snatched out of the grave actually win. He says people who boast of their wealth (meaning they don’t need God to save them) will die like animals. This broken and sinful world is as good as it gets for them. People who are saved by the Lord will rule over them all. So, stay in your lane, don’t get hung up on the prosperity of the wicked. God will not be mocked.
Proverbs 10: 27-28
When our hopes line up with God’s hopes it results in happiness. When we say I expect this to happen or I expect that to happen in a demanding wicked way, we get nothing. Ask me how I know.