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FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Thu, 5/23/2013

Thursday, May 23, 2013

FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Thu, 5/23/2013

2 Samuel 6:1-16
AFTER GOD'S OWN HEART, Lesson 4a

When the name of David is mentioned, what is your first thought? How do you remember his life? For many, their first thought is his victory over Goliath. Some remember his failure with Bathsheba. Others remember his anointing and call as a young man. Some dwell on his problems with Saul and Absalom. Some remember his friendship with Jonathon. That is the human way! We remember the spectacular, the traumatic and the glorious. However, when God remembers David, He remembers something quite different about him. To find out what God remembers about this man, you have to turn to the New Testament. Some 1,000 years after his death, Paul, writing under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, reveals what God remembers about David. The passage is Acts 13:22. The statement is: "I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after mine own heart, which shall fulfil all my will." What a testimony of a life well lived and found pleasing to the Lord!

It should be the goal of every believer in this room to be found pleasing in the sight of the Lord. It should be our goal to be a person "After God's own heart." You may wonder how this can be done. Well, I think this passage reveals some qualities that were found in David's life that tell us why he was considered a man after God's own heart. These qualities are seen throughout David's life, but they are brought into sharp focus in this passage. By the way these are the same qualities that will enable us to be known as one "after God's own heart." Let me share those qualities with you today.

V. 1-5 HE HAD A DESIRE FOR THE PRESENCE OF GOD

V. 2-3 A Conspicuous Absence - This passage relates the fact that the Ark of the Covenant is missing. The Ark was of vital importance to the worship of the Jewish people. The Ark was the place where the "shechinah" glory of the Lord dwelt between the two cherubim. It was where God met with and dwelled with His people. However, the Ark was missing. 1 Samuel 4 tells of how foolish pride resulted in the Ark being taken by the Philistines. 1 Samuel 5-6 tell of the terrible price the Philistines paid for having the Ark in their possession. 1 Samuel 7:1-2 tells us that the Ark spent 20 years at the house of a man named Abinadab. When the Ark was missing, so was the manifest presence of the Lord God. God was still there, but His presence was not tangible. There will be times in our lives when we do not experience the "manifest presence" of the Lord. We know that He is always there, (Matt. 28:20; Heb. 13:5), but there are times when He cannot be seen, heard or felt. Those are hard times.

V. 1-5 A Concentrated Action - During the reign of Saul, the things of the Lord had been terribly neglected. However, when David comes to the throne, he takes definite steps to recover the Ark and the presence of the Lord. More than anything in his life, David wanted to live in the presence of the Lord, (Psa. 42:1-2; Psa. 27:4). This will be the burning desire of every life that is a life after God's own heart! There will be a hunger for His manifest presence in that life. When it is missing, every possible step will be taken to recover His precious presence! Think of what it might require - Repentance, obedience, confession, forgiveness, etc.
TODAY’S VERSE!
Psalm 27:14 (New King James Version (NKJV)
14 Wait on the Lord;
Be of good courage,
And He shall strengthen your heart;
Wait, I say, on the Lord!

TODAY’S HYMN!
“Teach Me Thy Way, O Lord” By: B. Mansell Ramsey (1919)

Teach me Thy way, O Lord, teach me Thy way!
Thy guiding grace afford, teach me Thy way!
Help me to walk aright, more by faith, less by sight;
Lead me with heav’nly light, teach me Thy way!

When I am sad at heart, teach me Thy way!
When earthly joys depart, teach me Thy way!
In hours of loneliness, in times of dire distress,
In failure or success, teach me Thy way!

When doubts and fears arise, teach me Thy way!
When storms o’erspread the skies, teach me Thy way!
Shine through the cloud and rain, through sorrow, toil and pain;
Make Thou my pathway plain, teach me Thy way!

Long as my life shall last, teach me Thy way!
Where’er my lot be cast, teach me Thy way!
Until the race is run, until the journey’s done,
Until the crown is won, teach me Thy way!

TODAY’S PRAYER!
Most Holy Father, Merciful God! We bring You the praise of our lips as a sacrifice to You today. You, O God, are worthy of all praise, glory, honor, power, blessings and riches. In view of Your mercies, we offer our entire being as living sacrifices, holy because You are Holy, and pleasing because Your will and way is always a blessing to us. May we never forget our Maker and may we always offer our sacrifice of praise through Jesus Christ, our Lord, King, Redeemer, Savior, Master, and Friend. These things we pray in His blessed name! Amen!

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CIERAPOET 5/24/2013 4:44PM

    emoticon Teaching!
I thought of the Psalms and How He was a man after God's Own Heart. That Has always set with me. Although he made mistakes he immediately repented and grew closer to God. I want that type of Relationship with Our Lord. I want ALL God has for me! I DESIRE HIS PRESENCE and to DO that which PLEASES Him! Daily! I Thank God for The Blood of Jesus That Washes Away ALL sin! God is So Amazing with His PLANS for each one of us! I'm CHASING after HIS will ALL of my days!
God Bless You Vic!
Deb
emoticon emoticon emoticon

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ANHELIC 5/23/2013 11:18PM

    Thank you Vic for a great lesson, hymn and prayer. My thoughts about David is how he defeated Goliath, was a man of many talents, yet turned his back on God. He was back in good faith with God who forgave him and he was still set up as King. For us, even when we stray from God, He forgives us if we repent and remain as a child of His. Thank you for the goodie and note. God bless you for your teachings.

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HONOURIA 5/23/2013 1:21PM

    David is an interesting bible character. He didn't lack for courage, he played musical instruments and was the first to link music to worship, he danced, he was poetic, passionate, larger than life. A man of passion - in his life and for God. I think on human level we can connect with that.

His writing reflects that nature as well. It is filled with emotion.

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MNABOY 5/23/2013 12:49PM

    Amen

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NELLIEH1 5/23/2013 8:37AM

    What comes to mind when I think of David is His utter abandon to GOD in worship. There is no David focus in his praise, only the LORD. Even in David's Psalms for laying before GOD his life and concerns, he comes to a place in each one of "But You , GOD, are my Rock and Fortress..."etc. Oh to continually have a heart following hard after the LORD alone!!

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AVANELL 5/23/2013 7:58AM

    My first thought about David was that he was considered to be a man after God's own heart. I long to be known by God as a woman after God's own heart. That takes commitment, time, a tender and teachable heart, a passion for all that God is and wants to be in me; a tall order to fill! But with God nothing is impossible and all things are possible to him who believes. I believe!

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RSSSLHB 5/23/2013 7:38AM

    emoticon Vic

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SANDRALEET 5/23/2013 7:29AM

    God sees our inside feelings not our outside the world sees

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AZMOMXTWO 5/23/2013 7:28AM

  thank you

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FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Wed, 5/22/2013

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

FOLLOWING IIN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Wed, 5/22/2013

2 Samuel 6:1-19
GOING AFTER GOD, Lesson 3c

v. 11-19 THE DEVOTION OF DAVID’S HEART

David was afraid to bring the Ark up, but a man named Obed-edom was glad to have it in his house. He knew that a clean heart and a pure life had nothing to fear from the Lord. When David closed the door to God, Obed-edom opened his door and God blessed him as a result. When David hears about this, he experiences a change in attitude. He returns to the house of Obed-edom with a desire to carry out God’s will God’s way. Something has happened in David’s heart that made him a candidate for what God wanted to do for him. Let’s notice David’s heart as it is revealed in these verses.

v. 11-12 Manifested In A Change In David’s Attitude – David had forgotten the reasons why he went after the Ark in the first place. He is reminded when he hears of the blessings being heaped upon the house of Obed-edom. David goes after the Ark and brings it home.

v. 13 Manifested In A Change In David’s Approach – Apparently, during the three months that passed between the death of Uzzah and David’s decision to go get the Ark, he had been doing his homework. Either someone told David how the Ark was supposed to be moved, or he read the Law for himself, (1 Chron. 15:13-15). Either way, he went and got it and brought it home the right way. This time there would be no shortcuts and no disobedience; David would do it the right way. He would do it the Lord’s way! Just to be sure, the Levites stopped after they had gone six steps and they sacrificed to the Lord. When the Lord did not destroy anyone, they were assured of His blessings and they carried the Ark on to Jerusalem.

v. 14-19 Manifested In A Change In David’s Actions – It seems that David has given up music, (v. 5), and has taken up dancing, (v. 14). He has also laid the robes of his sovereignty and put on the humble ephod of a seeker. He has laid aside his pouts and replaced them with shouts. David’s heart has been transformed and he is getting what went after. He went after God and he is returning with presence and power of God. David’s life, and the nation of Israel, would never be the same again.

What are the lessons for us here? They are simple! The believer who goes after God with a heart to know Him; and who seeks His face according to His revealed will; is going to receive that which he is after, (Gal 6:7). When we stop trying to get on us through fleshly means and through worldly shortcuts; and we go after Him by honoring His Word and respecting His holiness, He will bless us with His presence and His power for His glory! Doing things God’s way will put a shout in your heart, a song on your lips and glory in your soul. When we line up with Him and go after God with all our hearts, we will be changed forever! We must learn the truth that there are no shortcuts to holiness and obedience.

You see, walking in obedience to the Lord and His precepts and principles will set you free, (John 8:32; Rom. 8:1-5)! Living in disobedience and in the power of the flesh will result in bondage.

Conc: David went after God the wrong way and he paid a high price for his disobedience. However, when he started doing things God’s way, his life was revolutionized. He was after God, and God’s presence and power, and he got it all when he did it God’s way.

What about you? Are you seeking God and His power and presence in your life? Are you seeking Him His way? Are you walking in obedience to His precepts and principles? If you have been hitting brick walls in your quest for God; let David’s example set you on the right path. Go after God with all you have, but be sure that you go after Him His way.

TODAY’S VERSE!
Romans 13:11 (New King James Version (NKJV)

Put on Christ

11 And do this, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep; for now our salvation is nearer than when we first believed.

TODAY’S HYMN!
“The Sands of Time” By: Annie B. Cousin (1857)

The sands of time are sinking, the dawn of Heaven breaks;
The summer morn I’ve sighed for—the fair, sweet morn awakes:
Dark, dark hath been the midnight, but dayspring is at hand,
And glory, glory dwelleth in Immanuel’s land.

O Christ, He is the fountain, the deep, sweet well of love!
The streams of earth I’ve tasted more deep I’ll drink above:
There to an ocean fullness His mercy doth expand,
And glory, glory dwelleth in Immanuel’s land.

Oh! Well it is forever, Oh! well forevermore,
My nest hung in no forest of all this death doomed shore:
Yea, let the vain world vanish, as from the ship the strand,
While glory—glory dwelleth in Immanuel’s land.

There the Red Rose of Sharon unfolds its heartsome bloom
And fills the air of heaven with ravishing perfume:
Oh! To behold it blossom, while by its fragrance fanned
Where glory—glory dwelleth in Immanuel’s land.

The King there in His beauty, without a veil is seen:
It were a well spent journey, though seven deaths lay between:
The Lamb with His fair army, doth on Mount Zion stand,
And glory—glory dwelleth in Immanuel’s land.

Oft in yon sea beat prison My Lord and I held tryst,
For Anwoth was not heaven, and preaching was not Christ:
And aye, my murkiest storm cloud was by a rainbow spanned,
Caught from the glory dwelling in Immanuel’s land.

But that He built a Heaven of His surpassing love,
A little new Jerusalem, like to the one above,
“Lord take me over the water” hath been my loud demand,
Take me to my love’s own country, unto Immanuel’s land.

But flowers need nights cool darkness, the moonlight and the dew;
So Christ, from one who loved it, His shining oft withdrew:
And then, for cause of absence my troubled soul I scanned
But glory shadeless shineth in Immanuel’s land.

The little birds of Anwoth, I used to count them blessed,
Now, beside happier altars I go to build my nest:
Over these there broods no silence, no graves around them stand,
For glory, deathless, dwelleth in Immanuel’s land.

Fair Anwoth by the Solway, to me thou still art dear,
Even from the verge of heaven, I drop for thee a tear.
Oh! If one soul from Anwoth meet me at God’s right hand,
My heaven will be two heavens, In Immanuel’s land.

I’ve wrestled on towards Heaven, against storm and wind and tide,
Now, like a weary traveler that leaneth on his guide,
Amid the shades of evening, while sinks life’s lingering sand,
I hail the glory dawning from Immanuel’s land.

Deep waters crossed life’s pathway, the hedge of thorns was sharp;
Now, these lie all behind me Oh! for a well tuned harp!
Oh! To join hallelujah with yon triumphant band,
Who sing where glory dwelleth in Immanuel’s land.

With mercy and with judgment my web of time He wove,
And aye, the dews of sorrow were lustered with His love;
I’ll bless the hand that guided, I’ll bless the heart that planned
When throned where glory dwelleth in Immanuel’s land.

Soon shall the cup of glory wash down earth’s bitterest woes,
Soon shall the desert briar break into Eden’s rose;
The curse shall change to blessing the name on earth that’s banned
Be graven on the white stone in Immanuel’s land.

O I am my Beloved’s and my Beloved’s mine!
He brings a poor vile sinner into His “house of wine.”
I stand upon His merit—I know no other stand,
Not even where glory dwelleth in Immanuel’s land.

I shall sleep sound in Jesus, filled with His likeness rise,
To love and to adore Him, to see Him with these eyes:
’Tween me and resurrection but Paradise doth stand;
Then—then for glory dwelling in Immanuel’s land.

The Bride eyes not her garment, but her dear Bridegroom’s face;
I will not gaze at glory but on my King of grace.
Not at the crown He giveth but on His pierced hand;
The Lamb is all the glory of Immanuel’s land.

I have borne scorn and hatred, I have borne wrong and shame,
Earth’s proud ones have reproached me for Christ’s thrice blessed Name:
Where God His seal set fairest they’ve stamped the foulest brand,
But judgment shines like noonday in Immanuel’s land.

They’ve summoned me before them, but there I may not come,
My Lord says “Come up hither,” My Lord says “Welcome home!”
My King, at His white throne, my presence doth command
Where glory—glory dwelleth in Immanuel’s land.

TODAY’S PRAYER!
Heavenly Father, Amazing God and Grace! Your Word is a letter from Christ, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the Living God; not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts. Thank You for Your saving grace, for teaching us how to live our lives in such a way, that one day Your pronounced judgment on us will be, “Well Done, My Good and faithful servant”. Blessed be Christ Jesus who made it all possible. This we pray in His Glorious name. Amen!

BE SURE TO READ MY DAILY “DID YOU KNOW” POST!
SHARE THIS LESSON WITH FRIENDS AND INVITE THEM TO JOIN THE TEAM!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ANHELIC 5/22/2013 10:43PM

    Thank you Vic for a great lesson, hymn and prayer. Teaching us through what David did and how he changed and lived in obedience to gain favor with God. We need to be obedient and listen to God's voice. Thank you for the goodie and note. God Bless you for your daily teachings.

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NELLIEH1 5/22/2013 6:22PM

    What strikes me in your blog today, Vic, is that David "heard" GOD once more through the obedience of Obed-edom. Marvelously, it is not too late for any of us to follow hard after the LORD with our whole beings (not just minds or emotions or will or physically or...). GOD gives us so many chances to be fully His. And yet, "Today, if you hear His voice, do not harden your hearts as you did in the rebellion..." (Hebrews 3:7, 15; 4:7) We must choose now as we hear and understand. Today is indeed the day!

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RSSSLHB 5/22/2013 3:36PM

    emoticon for posting emoticon

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MNABOY 5/22/2013 12:06PM

    Thanks for sharing

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HONOURIA 5/22/2013 9:59AM

    Having a heart for God and listening to him, knowing his precepts, so matters.

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LOOKINGUP2012 5/22/2013 7:49AM

    May we learn to walk in humble obedience to His will.

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AZMOMXTWO 5/22/2013 7:33AM

  emoticon

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SANDRALEET 5/22/2013 7:32AM

    Gods way not ours

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CASTIRONLADY 5/22/2013 7:27AM

    May God revolutionize us on this day, His day! Bless you, Vic. emoticon

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FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Tue, 5/21/2013

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

FOLLOWING IIN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Tue, 5/21/2013

2 Samuel 6:1-19
GOING AFTER GOD, Lesson 3b

v. 3-10 THE DISAPPOINTMENT OF DAVID’S HEART

David’s motives in bringing the Ark to Jerusalem were proper; but his methods were faulty. Instead of being successful; David’s methods for transporting the Ark resulted in the death of a man named Uzzah. This angered David, (v. 8) and created fear within David’s heart toward the Lord, (v. 9). Let’s take a moment to examine David’s disappointment a little more closely and seek to determine what caused his plan to fall apart.

v. 3 Created By A Faulty Decision – The Bible says that they “set the Ark of God upon a new cart…” David’s first problem was rooted in the fact that he either forgot or ignored the clear command of God as to how the Ark was to be transported. The Ark was to be lifted by means of two golden staves which were to be passed through golden rings fashioned on the corners of the Ark, (Ex. 25:14-15). The Ark was then to be lifted up and carried upon the shoulders of a family of Levites known as the Kohathites, (Num. 3:30; 14:15; 7:9). David made good plans and good preparations, but he neglected to do it God’s way. He paid a high price for this decision.

Another flaw that mars David’s decision is the fact that he did not seek God before he made it. Up to this moment, David has always gone to the Lord for guidance and direction. Time and time again, David asks the Lord for help. Here, he does not seek the Lord, but he just assumes that God will bless him because he is doing a good thing. Have you ever had this experience?

Another problem David has is that his methods were the same methods that had been used by the world. When the Philistines had the Ark and wanted to return it to Israel, they had placed it on a new cart as well, (1 Sam. 6:7-15).

v. 4-7 Caused By A Foolish Disobedience – For the first two miles of their journey, then the oxen shook the cart and threatened to dump the Ark off the cart. At this point, Uzzah reached out his hand in an effort to steady the Ark and prevent it from falling. This seems like a logical thing to do, but apparently God did not agree. He killed Uzzah on the spot! You see, the Ark was not only supposed to be carried only on the shoulders of the Kohathites; it was never to be touched by human hands, (Num. 4:15). The penalty for touching the Ark was death, as Uzzah and David quickly found out.

If these verses teach us anything, they teach us that God is very interested in the details. We may think that God does not care about the little things in life; but He does! When God gives a command, He expects it to be followed to the letter. A heart that is after God does what God says to do, and it stops doing what God says not to do.

In the Bible, there are precepts and there are principles. A precept is to be obeyed, there is no wiggle room. If God were to posts a 55 mile per hour speed limit, He will not accept 75; 60 or even 56. He expects absolute obedience. Regardless of the time or the circumstances, the speed limit is 55 MPH. That is a precept. His precepts are to be followed, to the letter, without question.

If God posts a sign that says “Watch for Children,” that sign is a principle. It will need to be observed more closely in a crowded neighborhood than it will on a deserted country road. In other words, a principle is to be applied with wisdom. A heart that is going after God will desire to honor both God’s precepts and His principles. God is intensely interested in the little things of life; even the things that you may not think matter at all.

Does God’s reaction seem harsh to you? After all, Uzzah was merely trying to do a good thing. But, that is the price for disobedience and for violating the holiness of God. God honors obedience and He will judge disobedience!

Some other truths that we should take note of here are the following:
God’s blessings come only through obedience and those who defy His Word and His will are going pay a terribly high price. The best thing a child of God can do is align themselves with the Word of God and walk in humble obedience, (John 14:15; Micah 6:8).
Failing to seek God’s will is just as dangerous as ignoring what He has already told you to do. His children should always pray before they make a move, (Matt. 6:33).
Trying to carry out God’s business using the methods of the world is a recipe for disaster. We have no business trying to carry the church on the new carts of the world’s wisdom. It is to be carried on the shoulders and in the hearts of the people of God!
Like Uzzah, we are often guilty of reaching out with our hands instead of reaching up with our hearts. We are guilty of trying to do spiritual work in the power of the flesh. We attempt to do the work of God with our hands and never really get under the burden. That will never work and God will not bless it, (Jer. 29:13)!

C. v. 8-10 Culminated In A Fleshly Display – David became angry. Possibly he was angry with the Lord; more likely he was angry with himself and his own foolishness. But, instead of repenting and doing things the Lord’s way, David chose instead to forget the whole business. He dismissed the people and left the Ark where it was. David stopped praising and he started pouting. We never do this…do we?

We should not be surprised when God refuses to bless us when we leave the reservation. When we seek to do His business our way, He will not bless it. When we employ worldly methods in an attempt to do His work, He will not bless it. When we fail to seek His will, He will not bless us. When we operate in the power and energy of the flesh, He will not bless us. When we refuse to obey His precepts and principles, He will not bless us.

If you want to be disappointed in your walk with Jesus as an individual or as a church, just do everything your way, and watch Him refuse to honor it. Watch Him send judgment instead. If you want His blessings, then do His business His way and He will honor it and bring glory to Himself through it.

TODAY’S VERSE!
Isaiah 57:19 (New King James Version (NKJV)
19 “I create the fruit of the lips:
Peace, peace to him who is far off and to him who is near,”
Says the Lord,
“And I will heal him.”

TODAY’S HYMN!
“Seek Ye First” By: Karen Lafferty (1972)

Seek Ye First the Kingdom of God, And His righteousness, And all these things shall be added unto you, Singing Allelu Alleluia

Man shall not live by bread alone, But by every word, That proceeds from the mouth of God, Singing Allelu Alleluia

Ask and it shall be given unto you, Seek and ye shall find, Knock and the door shall be opened unto you, Singing Allelu Alleluia

Bridge:
Alleluia Alleluia, Jesus be my first love Allelui,a Alleluia, Lord you will guide me As I seek You,
Al - le - lu - ia
Al - le - lu - ia
Al - le - lu - ia
Al - le - lu Al - le - lu - ia


TODAY’S PRAYER!
Mighty Father, Awesome God! Thank You for adopting us by the blood of Jesus Christ our Lord. We are profoundly grateful for every spiritual blessing in Him. Help us to see with our hearts our spiritual inheritance, a greater one than money or land, when we obey God’s commands and follow Jesus, walking where He walks and doing what He does, the way He walks and does things in life. For those who believe and obey, there is a part of the inheritance of Israel, for we have also been included in the lineage of Christ. This inheritance is kept in heaven for us. So help us to walk spiritually and holy the way You have commanded us to live. This we pray with joyful gratitude in the Blessed name of Jesus. Amen!

BE SURE TO READ MY DAILY “DID YOU KNOW” POST!
SHARE THIS LESSON WITH FRIENDS AND INVITE THEM TO JOIN THE TEAM!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SANDRALEET 5/22/2013 7:32AM

    When we do things for our advantage we often turn Gods way to our way We make God our servant not us his

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ANHELIC 5/21/2013 11:49PM

    Thank you Vic for a great lesson, hymn and prayer. We find that sometimes, we stray away from God for a time, and then realizing how badly things happen by our choices tells us God's way is the best way. Thank you Vic for your teaching. Thank you for the goodie and note.

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LOOKINGUP2012 5/21/2013 7:42PM

    Thanks for taking the time to walk through the details of this lesson with us! Tremendous.

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RSSSLHB 5/21/2013 3:36PM

    emoticon emoticon

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HONOURIA 5/21/2013 1:18PM

    Amen sister!

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NELLIEH1 5/21/2013 12:56PM

    We, as believers into Jesus Christ our Lord, each have many precious gifts from our Father in heaven. The indwelling of GOD's Holy Spirit means our Teacher lives in us. Having the words of GOD in print, yes, but more importantly in our hearts, means our Teacher can use the scriptures of the Bible to instruct, correct, guide and encourage us in "This is the way...walk in it." It is often difficult to know what, when, where, how GOD would have us do certain things, but we are expressly told about being. Having a heart after GOD is our calling. I don't believe that obedience is being a puppet. King David , who as king, probably had a copy of the Torah, failed to apply the scriptures in the caring of the Ark and this led to tragedy for his followers. Yes, we do need to have Faith..and along with that gift, we need to add goodness, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness , brotherly kindness and love (which are more gifts from GOD!) How wonderful are His ways on our behalf in our Saviour!

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JADOMB 5/21/2013 12:20PM

    I too struggle with how to balance my obedience to God. It is difficult for me to know when I am to do things on my own or with God's guidance. I know many will say that you should always go with God's guidance, but how does one truly know if he has spoken to you or not? We are NOT puppets and God does not want us to be puppets. So we also have to follow our own instincts. In the end we will still have to rely on FAITH. Faith in God and Faith in how he is working through us.

Did Uzzah act out of disobedience lack of faith or ignorance to God's instructions to NOT touch the Ark? Or did he voluntarily sacrifice his life for God out of his human instinct to save the Ark? We continue to struggle to understand all that God asks of us, but we need to continue to have FAITH in order to do our best.

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HONOURIA 5/21/2013 12:08PM

    What a fantastic blog post this is. This is so true of our responses here on this side. Not much has changed in that regard. This is one of those instances where the bible is giving practical advice and at the same time showing not only our own human inclinations, but God's nature.

We humans find God hard to understand, and less easy to accept. God is holy, and we have a hard time grasping those implications.

You are right about the details. I never thought about that, but you are right - He's a stickler for detail. It makes His mercy precious.

Comment edited on: 5/21/2013 12:09:09 PM

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KIMPY225 5/21/2013 11:42AM

    emoticon

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COOP9002 5/21/2013 10:03AM

    thanks

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CANDOIT54 5/21/2013 9:41AM

    emoticon

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SANDRALEET 5/21/2013 8:42AM

    Gods will not ours be done.

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AZMOMXTWO 5/21/2013 7:41AM

  thank you

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FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, 5/20/2013

Monday, May 20, 2013

FOLLOWING IIN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Mon, 5/20/2013

2 Samuel 6:1-19
GOING AFTER GOD, Lesson 3a

When we last left David, he was secure in his position as King of Israel. The nation had gathered themself around him, and anointed him to be their king. While David was certainly grateful for the peace that existed in Israel in those days; he knew that Israel was still far away from the Lord. During the days of Saul, Israel had lost sight of their relationship with the Lord. David wanted to make that situation right. He wanted to bring his people back to God.

To do this, David knew that he was going to have to lead the nation to go after God. Our passage opens with David leading a massive army to retrieve the Ark of the Covenant from the house of a man named Abinadab. David knew that Israel would never be where they needed to be with the Lord until the Ark was restored as the centerpiece of Israelite worship and everyday life.

At this point, a little history regarding the Ark is in order. The Ark of the Covenant was built at the command of the Lord, (Ex. 25:10-22). The word Ark means “chest or box.” The Ark was a box of wood that measured 45” long and 27” wide by 27” high. This box was overlaid in pure gold. It was topped by a golden grate called the Mercy Seat. One either side of the Mercy Seat, were two golden cherubim. Inside the Ark were a golden pot of manna; Aaron’s rod that budded and the two tables of the Law that were given to Moses at Mount Sinai. It was here that God promised to meet with His people. It was here that the blood of the atonement was place on the Day of Atonement. It was here that the Shechinah glory of God rested as the child of Israel journeyed through the wilderness.

This Ark was vital to worship in Israel. It was symbolic of God’s presence among His people. It was often carried into battle in front of the soldiers. It was central to their lives; their worship and their relationship with God. But, the Ark had not been kept in the central position that it deserved; and, as a result, neither had God.

You see, way back in the days of Eli, some 75 years earlier, the Ark had been taken by the Philistines, (1 Sam. 4:11). However, the God punished the Philistines all the time the Ark was in their possession, (1 Sam. 5-6). Their solution was to place the Ark on a new cart and allow the cattle that pulled the Ark take the box back to Israel. So, after 75 years, David is about to take Israel and lead them to go after God.

We do not have an Ark like Israel did; but we still need the presence of God just as much as they did. We need God on us and we need His power and His manifest presence in our lives and our worship. This passage has something to say about this matter of going after God and bringing back His presence and His power. Notice with me some of the simple insights that are contained in this passage as we consider the thought, “ Going After God”.

v. 1-2 THE DESIRE OF DAVID’S HEART

When you think of David, what is your first thought? Do you remember his triumph over the giant Goliath? Do you remember David as the man who committed adultery with Bathsheba? Do you remember his failures as a father? Do you remember Him as a humble shepherd? Or, do you remember David as the “Sweet Singer of Israel?” Do you know God remembers David? The answer is given to us in (Acts 13:22). There, Paul quotes God and tells us that God look at David as “a man after God’s Own heart!” God remembers David as a man who cared about the things that God cared about; who loved what God loved; hated what God hated; and whose heart beat in time with God’s. This aspect of David’s character is revealed in the desire of David’s heart.

David Possessed A Holy Desire – David’s desire is clear and simple. He wants the Ark returned to its place as the centerpiece of worship and devotion in Israel. He wants God placed back in the center of the national consciousness. David was seeking to unify a formerly divided nation with God as their true King once again. David desired God’s presence, God’s blessing and God’s guidance.

David Possessed An Honest Desire – David was motivated by no ulterior motives. He was not after glory or power; David merely wanted to see God restored to His proper place as the Sovereign God of the nation of Israel. He strongly desired that God would be glorified among the people of Israel.

David Possessed A Humble Desire – David knew that neither he nor Israel would amount to anything without the presence and power of God. David knew they did not possess the power or the ability to fend for themselves. They needed God. They needed His presence and His power. Therefore, David set out to bring the Ark back to Jerusalem to restore it to a place of prominence in the eyes of the nation.

Let me just say that we need hearts like that which David possessed. We need a heart that beats for God, His power and His presence. We need to learn the lesson that we can do nothing without God, (John 15:5). We must have His presence and His power if we are going to serve Him; worship Him and carry out His will in our lives. Like David and Israel, it is high time the church rose up and went after the Lord! We know how to do it all; but I am afraid that we do not know nearly enough about how to seek His face, (2 Chron. 7:14). May God grant us hearts that are hungry for Him; that will not be satisfied until He comes by in power and glory and transforms us into all we can be for Him. That was David’s desire; may it be ours as well.

TODAY’S VERSE!
Psalm 7:1 (New King James Version (NKJV)

7 O Lord my God, in You I put my trust;
Save me from all those who persecute me;
And deliver me,

TODAY’S HYMN!
“Standing On The Promises” By: R. Kelso Carter (1886)

1. Standing on the promises of Christ my King,
Through eternal ages let His praises ring,
Glory in the highest, I will shout and sing,
Standing on the promises of God.

Refrain:
Standing, standing,
Standing on the promises of God my Savior;
Standing, standing,
I’m standing on the promises of God.

2. Standing on the promises that cannot fail,
When the howling storms of doubt and fear assail,
By the living Word of God I shall prevail,
Standing on the promises of God.
Refrain:

3. Standing on the promises I now can see
Perfect, present cleansing in the blood for me;
Standing in the liberty where Christ makes free,
Standing on the promises of God.
Refrain:

4. Standing on the promises of Christ the Lord,
Bound to Him eternally by love’s strong cord,
Overcoming daily with the Spirit’s sword,
Standing on the promises of God.
Refrain:

5. Standing on the promises I cannot fall,
List’ning every moment to the Spirit’s call,
Resting in my Savior as my all in all,
Standing on the promises of God.
Refrain:


TODAY’S PRAYER!
Holy Father, Loving God! It is always Your will for us to be joyful and pray often, giving thanks for all our circumstances. Help us to remember to do Your will in this regard, even when we do not see answers to our prayers as we would like to see them. You are greater than anything we face in this life. Teach us to pray continually, to give thanks in all circumstances, and rejoice for this id Your will for us in Christ Jesus. Bless us and forgive us when we fail. This we pray in the name of our Blessed Savior . Amen!

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SANDRALEET 5/21/2013 8:40AM

    We with the best attention put our will in the place of Gods will and that brings trouble on to us .We are not God His will not ours be done

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NELLIEH1 5/20/2013 10:53PM

    Yes!! "We know how to do it all, but not how to seek Him above all."

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MZLADY77 5/20/2013 10:36PM

    emoticon emoticon

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CANDOIT54 5/20/2013 5:51PM

    emoticon Vic

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HONOURIA 5/20/2013 4:37PM

    We sang this tune in the choir in the last month - I remember because I was the only one singing alto harmony and it was fun with this hymn.

It is often hard in current life with all it's distractions to remain focused on God.

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RSSSLHB 5/20/2013 3:55PM

    emoticon emoticon Vic

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LOSTLIME 5/20/2013 1:27PM

    thank you,Vic!

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SANDRALEET 5/20/2013 10:21AM

    We the believers all are the church God made it much simpler for us We do not have to fear or kill anything in our path to faith love grace from God

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1HAPPYSPIRIT 5/20/2013 9:05AM

    emoticon Vic!!!

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CASTIRONLADY 5/20/2013 9:03AM

    I appreciate the fact you include the composer/writers of the hymns. Their incredible testimonies have stood the test of time. Such an inspiration of spreading God's word, you are! emoticon

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LOOKINGUP2012 5/20/2013 8:23AM

    emoticon

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AZMOMXTWO 5/20/2013 7:40AM

  thank you

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FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Sun, 5/19/2013

Sunday, May 19, 2013







FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF FAITH, Sun, 5/19/2013

2 Sam. 5:22-25
THE SOUND OF A GOING, Lesson 2b

THE WIND SHOWCASES HIS POWER

When the wind came, the Lord came; when the Lord came, victory came, (v. 25). God led David and his man to a great victory by His awesome power.

When the winds of adversity blow into our lives, we can be assured that God will show up in power in His time.
God used wind to dry up the waters after the flood, (Gen. 8:1).
God used wind to bring the plague of locusts on Egypt, (Ex. 10:13).
God used wind to part the Red Sea, (Ex. 14:21). He stopped that wind to drown the Egyptian army.
God used wind to blow quail into the camp of Israel, (Num. 11:31).
God used wind to teach Elijah about the presence of God, (1 Kings 19:11).
God used wind to teach Peter about faith, (Matt. 14:22-33).

The winds that are sent into our lives do not come to destroy us. It may appear that they will, but God sends them to teach us about His purposes and His power in our lives, (Psa. 37:25; Rom. 8:28; 2 Cor. 4:17). God is not trying to hurt you, but to grow you! It is in the storm that you meet that you find the Master of the sea!

THE WIND STRENGTHENS HIS PEOPLE

When the wind came, David was to “bestir” himself, (v. 24). “Bestir” means “to be decisive, to take action.” The presence of the wind declared the presence of the Lord and the absolute promise of victory for Israel. David was to go on for God when the wind began to blow.

Instead of living in fear of the winds of adversity and affliction, we should consider them to be blessings in disguise. When the winds begin to blow, they merely remind us God is near; God is working; and victory is just around the corner! (Psa. 27:1) For me, that casts the winds in a whole new light.

The greatest time to serve God is not in the calm day. His glory shines best in the midst of the tempest. Learn that the battle and the storm belong to the Lord, (1 Sam. 17:47).

TODAY’S VERSE!
Romans 8:14 (New King James Version (NKJV)
14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.

TODAY’S HYMN!
The Battle Belongs To The Lord” By: James Owens Collins (1985)

In heavenly armour we'll enter the land
The battle belongs to the Lord
No weapon that's fashioned against us shall stand
The battle belongs to the Lord

We sing glory and honor
Power and strength to the Lord
We sing glory and honor
Power and strength to the Lord


The power of darkness comes in like a flood
The battle belongs to the Lord
He's raised up a standard, the power of His blood
The battle belongs to the Lord
We sing glory and honor
Power and strength to the Lord
We sing glory and honor
Power and strength to the Lord



When your enemy presses in hard do not fear
The battle belongs to the Lord
Take courage my friend, your redemption is near
The battle belongs to the Lord
We sing glory and honor
Power and strength to the Lord
We sing glory and honor
Power and strength to the Lord


TODAY’S PRAYER!
Gracious Father, Almighty God! It is by faith we stand in Christ Jesus. Faith convinces us fully that whatever You have promised to us, You will also be more than able to perform in our lives. Faith is a gift from You we receive when we believe in Jesus, Your Beloved Son, and when we follow and obey Him. We pray that our faith, no matter how it is tested by fire, will always glorify You and bring all praise and honor to You. Increase our faith daily and help us to grow in our understanding of it. May Your Word be so mixed with our faith that it will bring light and glory into our lives. These things we pray today in the blessed name of Jesus, our Savior and King. Amen!

BE SURE TO READ MY DAILY “TODAY’S, DID YOU KNOW” POST!
SHARE THIS LESSON WITH FRIENDS AND INVITE THEM TO JOIN THE TEAM!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JUDITH316 5/20/2013 4:02AM

    emoticon for this awesome Bible Blog, thanks for today's Hymn,...always appreciated.. God Bless.. emoticon emoticon emoticon

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ANHELIC 5/19/2013 10:55PM

    Thank you Vic for this great lesson, hymn and prayer. Being strengthened by God's wind and learning to remain close to Him will show how He can destroy our enemies. Thank you for the goodie and note. God Bless you for your teachings.

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AZMOMXTWO 5/19/2013 5:44PM

  emoticon emoticon emoticon

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RSSSLHB 5/19/2013 2:47PM

    emoticon emoticon

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LAILA07 5/19/2013 10:24AM

    emoticon What a powerful and fitting word this morning. It came at the right time for me. Thanks for sharing!

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CANDOIT54 5/19/2013 10:11AM

    emoticon Vic and God bless you.

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HONOURIA 5/19/2013 9:30AM

    Gotta love that hymn tune. Today is Pentecost. That was one holy wind!

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GLUECIPHER 5/19/2013 8:13AM

    "But every woman that prayeth or prophesieth with her head uncovered dishonoureth her head..." 1 Corinthians 11:5

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LOOKINGUP2012 5/19/2013 8:00AM

    Amen! emoticon for some really great lessons.

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NELLIEH1 5/19/2013 7:29AM

    Thank you again, Vic! emoticon On this remembrance of Pentecost (Acts 2), we see the LORD and He is high and lifted up and His train fills the temple of our hearts! Winds of all kinds come and our GOD is with/in us and them for our good (Romans 8:28). HalleluJAH!

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