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Julie Ferwerda Christian Blog and Commentary

OYB July 23

  • Julie Ferwerda
    Are you ready for change in 2009? Grab a One Year Bible (NLT), commit to reading it daily, and join Julie Ferwerda on an extraordinary adventure that will transform your life as you experience its relevance in a fresh, understandable way. In addition to 20+ years in Bible teaching ministry, Julie is a professional speaker and writer. Her works have appeared in publications such as Focus on the Family, Discipleship Journal, Christianity Today, Marriage Partnership, Brio, and Revolve Biblezines & Devotional Bible (for teens). She's also the author of "The Perfect Fit: Piecing Together True Love," and also the upcoming book, "One Million Arrows for God: Raising Your Children to Change the World." Learn more at www.JulieFerwerda.com.
  • 2009 Jul 23
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Today's One Year Bible Reading

Just a little reminder...the 2nd solar eclipse of three occurring on the 1st of Av came and went on July 21st. The next day to keep an eye on is the 9th of Av, July 30th. Remember from the July 1 blog teaching that the 9th of Av has historically been a day of doom and gloom for Israel and the world at large at significant times. Personally, I think the 3 eclipses mean that the possible judgments won't begin until 2010. But I am not declaring anything dogmatically...we'll see. All I'm doing is recognizing that God made the sun and moon for "signs and seasons" with "seasons" being divine appointments in Hebrew, not traditional seasons as we know them. This is a huge area where we have needed the Jews to help us make sense of what is going down in history. This is why the Israelite shepherds knew that the star of Bethlehem meant something, while the Roman rulers at that time didn't-they knew to watch the skies and they knew how to read them. If I sound like I'm on acid, it's probably because you haven't been following the blog all along and you have missed some important foundational teachings here. Better go back to the beginning if you don't understand what the heck I'm talking about! Or just Google solar eclipses on the 1st of Av.

2 Chronicles

8:11 [Solomon] said, "My wife must not live in King David's palace, for the Ark of the Lord has been there, and it is holy ground." Well, apparently Solomon is fully conscious of his sinful choice in marrying a woman he can't even bring into his father's home!

8:13 He offered the sacrifices for the Sabbaths, the new moon festivals, and the three annual festivals—the Passover celebration, the Festival of Harvest, and the Festival of Shelters-as Moses had commanded. Refresher of relevancy to us today:

  • Passover=Crucifixion of Jesus

  • Harvest (Festival of Weeks)=Pentecost when the Holy Spirit came to dwell in believers

  • Shelters (Tabernacles)=Future date when Jesus returns to earth to "tabernacle" or dwell with His people

8:16 So [Jesus] made sure that all the work related to building the Temple of the Lord was carried out, from the day its foundation was laid to the day of its completion. I made a little substitution so we could see the picture of a future fulfillment of this prophetic word.

9:8 Because God loves Israel and desires this kingdom to last forever, he has made you (Jesus) king over them so you can rule with justice and righteousness." Another beautifully prophetic word for the future!

9:13 Now the weight of gold which came to Solomon in one year was 666 talents of gold... Just a little interesting number in light of his morphing nature into the AC type (antichrist). We have fully covered this in Kings last month and it's worth searching out (going back) if you didn't read with us about in order to recognize Solomon's corruption (it's hard to see without examining the Scriptures very closely). Remember as you begin to see Solomon depicted as rich, wise, charming, and well-loved by all the people, many Messianic teachers believe that the antichrist will be all of those things as well. That is why he will be so deceiving. Funny how the characteristics, power, and dominion of the Christ and the antichrist may be so similar—almost identical in fact, but one has corruption in his heart. I believe this is why God chose one person to represent both--so we could see just how close they are to the same thing, until one exerts close, thoughtful inspection to the commands of Scripture! A very sobering thought.

Romans

8:11 Now if the spirit of Him Who rouses Jesus from among the dead is making its home in you, He Who rouses Christ Jesus from among the dead will also be vivifying (impart vitality or renewal) your mortal bodies because of His spirit making its home in you (Concordant Literal-CLT). I've always thought this verse was talking about "eternal life" but just today I noticed that it is only talking about renewing our mortal bodies now. Amazing that the same Spirit who raised Jesus and is living in me will impart some of that life to me NOW! Amen! I could sure use more awareness of that renewal!

8:13-14 ...for if you are living according to the flesh, you must die; but if by the Spirit you are putting to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God. This is a look at what being God's chosen means—it is a (second) death in a sense. I say that anyone who comes to Christ will always die a second death. The first death is our mortal bodies, the second death is to our flesh—the old man. It is the way of delayed gratification and chosen suffering through obedience in this world (taking up a cross), as we see in verse 17: and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him so that we may also be glorified with Him.

8:18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us. See what I mean? Delayed gratification! 

8:20-21 For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God. God subjected creation to futility, and I believe it is all part of His glorious plan to reveal His character to His creatures. No futility, no recognition of freedom and purpose. You could say this about every negative force that teaches us (reveals to us) about God's amazing goodness and power! And notice, we will all be set free from the curse together. God's creation was never going to be trashed someday. It is all part of His restoration and redemption process. It is such a beautiful "unveiling" of the nature, power, and love of God when you realize that it wasn't perfect to start (after the fall), it will become perfect to finish. The laws of thermodynamics will have to be rewritten when this occurs (i.e. "all things are coming to disorder).

8:25 But if we hope for what we do not see, with perseverance we wait eagerly for it. I don't know about you, but I seem to live in a constant state of hope these days, especially with the end of this age looming just up the road somewhere. I can't wait!

Psalm 18:16-19 is one of my favorite psalm portions! It is something I hung onto at the lowest time in my life!