Great rewards are laid up for those who fear and trust the Lord.

Oh, how great is your goodness, which You have laid up for those who fear You, Which You have prepared for those who trust You in the presence of the sons of men!  Ps. 31:19 NKJV.  2mountainshomesinvalley

Great, rab, Strong’s #7227: Great, abundant, many, large in number, of major importance; chief, weighty, significant, noble, princely. It’s from the verb rabab, “to become numerous or great.”

The title rabbi is a derivative of rab. Rabbi has been defined as “my teacher,” a more exact explanation is that it means “my great one” (full of knowledge) or “my master” (great instructor). This is the reason our Lord did not allow His followers to be called by this lofty title: He stressed that we can have but one Rabbi,  and that must be the Messiah only (Matthew 23:8).

That God has laid up goodness (rewards) for those who fear (reverence) and trust (lean on) Him is confirmed by Jesus In Matthew 5:11,12.

Are you spending your inheritance in Christ?

…that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ,the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him, the eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that you may know what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints… Ephesians 1:17,18 NKJV.

Wisdom and revelation are not meant to be understood as mystical. “Wisdom” speaks of practical, workable principals; “revelation” refers to clear perception and applicable understanding . The Holy Spirit is the divine and supernatural source of both (vs.17).

The eyes of your understanding being enlightened litterally means that your heart may receive the brightness of hope resulting when the wealth of God’s investment in you is understood (vs.18).

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 Mind, dianoia; Strong’s # 1271: Literally, “a thinking through.” Dianoia, is a combination of nous, “mind” and dia “through.” The word suggests understanding, insight, meditation, reflection, perception, the gift of apprehension, the faculty of thought. When this faculty is renewed (process, not a one time experience) by the Holy Spirit, the whole mind-set of the fearful negativism of the diseased carnal mind to the vibrant, positive thinking of the quickened spiritual mind.

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The Lord is One!

 

“Hear O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is One!”  Deuteronomy 6:4 NKJV.

Called Shema by orthodox Jews, after the first word, “Hear,” this famous passage supports the Trinitarian concept of deity—the Lord (Jehovah) our God (Elohim) is one Lord, the one echad, expressing compound unity, not yahid, meaning a single one. He alone to whom the name of Jehovah (Yahweh, “the self-existing One”) belongs is absolutely God (Ex. 3:14).  “Hear, O Israel: YHVH is God, YHVH alone is God,”is also an acceptable translation. good-evening-music

It is at once a testimony against Unitarianism as well as polytheism.

Because He is the one and only God, of one eternal, uncreated essence, yet manifested tripersonally as Scripture shows. He must be loved by the creature (us ins) with the whole being: heart, soul, (mind, will and emotions) and might (v.5), Jesus added the “mind” (Mark 12:30).

We who believe today know this same Yahweh, Israel Redeemer, as our Redeemer, who in the process of time became incarnate and died in our place. “We love Him, because He first loved us” (1 John 4:19).

One, echad, Strong’s # 259: One, a unit; united; unity. The root of echad is achad, to bring together, to unify; to collect one’s thoughts. Echad paints a range of meaning as “one” does in English, from the very narrowest sense (one and one only, as in Ecc.9:18, one sinner destroys much good”) to the broadest sense (one made up of many, as in Gen.2:24, where a man and his wife “shall become one flesh”).

The foundational truth for the redemption of the world is that there is one God who creates and redeems, and yet the NT shows that God is Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Compare the unity of God to the unity of man made in His image: Man is comprised of spirit, soul and body (1 Thes. 5:23). Man is not three “beings” but “one being” with physical, emotional, and spiritual elements.deu-6-4-web-watermarked

The word God is used here in its plural form in the Hebrew text. So, our God, the Lord is one likely emphasizes the Christian doctrine of the trinity, three Persons of the same substance in the one Godhead; this understanding, however, would not have been apparent to the people of the OT.

Are we growing in our long temper?

  1. For God is not unjust to forget your work and labor of love which you have shown toward His name, in that you have ministered to the saints, and do minister. 11. And we desire that each one of you show the same diligence to the full assurance of hope until the end, 12. That you do not become sluggish, but imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises. Hebrews 6:10-12 NKJV.

The Apostle expresses confidence that his readers will remain steadfast. Faith looks to the One who promises; (v10) hope looks to the things promised (v 11).

Patience, makrothumia, Strong’s # 3115- roots are makros, “long,” and thumos, “temper.” Some of the qualities are lenience, tolerance, fortitude, patient endurance, longsuffering. This speaks of the person who has power to avenge himself, yet refrains from the exercise of this power; a long holding of the mind before it gives room to action or passion. clip_image006

Makrothumia, is associated with mercy and is used of God (Rom.2:4; 1 Peter 3:20). When exercised toward another person, one suffers long and extends himself to the life of that person wishing to win such a one to a godly life in spite of his sinfulness (Acts 26:3). 27patienthen

 

A balance of the Demonstration of the Gospel is needed.

  1. And my speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, 5 that your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the powerof God. 1 Corinthians 2:4, 5. NKJV.

The text reveals an apostolic priority that leadership must contend for in an era when the intellect is often deified and the “demonstration of the Spirit and of power” (Greek apodeixis, Strong’s # 585) either unsought or ridiculed.

The word comes from a term used to describe actions that “exhibit or accredit, validate” a claim, a truth or a presence.  waveone third

The NT apostolic value system sought and was grateful for the Holy Spirit’s power-works, and so their manifestation is a worthy pursuit and expectation today as we declare God’s Word or testify to the lost (Mark 16:20).

We should expect manifestations of the Holy Spirit, not for show or sensation, but as means for God to validate the glory of the gospel.

1 Corinthians 1:7 says, So that you come short in no gift eagerly waiting for the revelation of our Lord Jesus…

Gift, Charisma, Strong’s #5486 id related to other words derived from the root char. Chara is joy, cheerfulness, delight. Charis is grace, goodwill, undeserved favor. Charisma is a gift of grace, a free gift, divine gratuity, spiritual endowment, miraculous faculty.

It is especially used to designate the gifts of the Holy Spirit 1 Corinthians 12:4-10. The gifts come with the Giver of the gifts for the purpose of accompanying them who are preaching, reaching the lost. The Lord is working with and confirming the word through signs.

 

A need met transforms a deceiver.

So many today have deep needs that hold them in bondages. Many do not press into God for freedom from addictions, but rather they run from God and are locked into deception. In our text we see one of the Bibles mysterious narratives that brought transformation to a life long deceiver.

24  Then Jacob was left alone; and a Man wrestled with him until the breaking of day. 25 Now when He saw that He did not prevail against him, He touched the socket of his hip; and the socket of Jacob’s hip was out of joint as He wrestled with him. 26 And He said, “let Me go, for the day breaks.” But he said, “I will not let You go unless You bless me!”

27 So He said to him, “what is your name?” he said, “Jacob.” 28 And He said, “Your name shall no longer be called Jacob, but Israel; for you have struggled with God and with men, and have prevailed.” 29 Then Jacob asked, saying, “Tell me your name, I pray.” And He said, “Why is it that you ask about My name?” and He blessed him there. 30 So Jacob called the place Peniel: “For I have seen God face to face, and my life is preserved.” 31 Just as he crossed over Peniel the sun rose on him, and he limped on his hip.  Genesis 32:24-31 NKJV. jacob_wrestling_with_god

This is one tall mysterious mystery, the Man is identified by Hosea as an angel (Hos. 12:4). The importance of the narrative is Jacob’s willingness to contend with God at his time of desperate need. Jacob knows God has willed to bless him (Gen. 32:12) and he will settle for nothing less than his full inheritance (v. 26).

Jacob’s contending tenacity causes him to again prevail (v.29). The Man obviously knew Jacob’s name.  He was made to say it because of its meaning—“supplanter” or “Deceiver.” He must acknowledge his weakness (like all of us) before he is transformed.

In spite of Jacob’s character weaknesses God commends him for his prevailing attitude; he is a fighter. As such Hosea sees Jacob as a model to be emulated whenever one is facing difficulty or a need for character transformation (Hos. 12:2-6).

The fact that Jacob limped symbolizes that character transformation costs God’s people in terms of death to our egos. Although the emphasis is Jacob’s contending (v.28), his personal transformation is an important secondary element.

This is what is needed in the body of Christ today. God gave Jacob the ultimate answer to his prayer: He showed His face (Gen.32:30).

God wants to reveal the knowledge of His glory, by the power of His Spirit, in the face of Jesus Christ (2 Cor. 4:6). So ask, seek, and knock (Luke 11:9, 10). One encounter face to face with Jesus will transform all character defects, as well as addictions. Glory be to God!

 

 

 

 

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