On the Hebrew calendar, the 9th day of Av (Tisha b’Av in Hebrew) is a notorious date of tragedy for the Jewish people. Many major tragedies are recorded in the Bible and continue up to modern history.
The Bible tells us that Aaron died on the first day of Av. Although he was a faithful servant for 40 years, he was part of that first generation that did not get to go into the Promised Land because of unbelief. Later, both temples were destroyed on the 9th of Av, as well as many, many other calamities down through the centuries.
Purim is a microcosm of our own lifelong quests: to walk in Yehovah’s ways despite the pressures around us, to trust that his purposes are being manifest in the events of our nation and world, and to have the courage to submit to his sovereignty and will at every turn. In short, it’s about living a life of faith.
As you read the story and the following posts, you will see yourself and your circumstances, as well as Yehovah’s sovereignty and guidance in your own life.
Jewish tradition has preserved the festival of Purim for nearly 2,500 years. While it’s not a festival commanded by Yehovah, it commemorates the victory recounted in the book of Esther of the deliverance of Yehovah’s people from persecution and destruction – a story repeated over and over in history and, indeed, continuing today.
Esther 9:26b-28 explains the original intent of the celebration: (more…)
To many, the account of Abraham offering up Isaac to God in Genesis 22 is one of the hardest stories in the Bible to read and comprehend. You don’t have to be a parent to feel the anguish Abraham must have felt, to question how he could attempt such a heartbreaking act, and even to doubt the goodness of God.
In addition to the emotion it raises, there are several unanswered logical mysteries as well. What did Abraham tell Isaac they were doing? Was Isaac really that gullible? The fact that Abraham had Isaac carry the wood up the mountain indicates that Isaac was stronger than Abraham. How did Abraham wrestle him onto the altar? Furthermore, the surrounding information indicates Isaac would’ve been an adult, probably near 37 years old. Just how did Abraham get him to go along with this preposterous plan? There are enough holes in the report to make us wonder if we’re really hearing the whole story. (more…)
Have you ever had someone give you a scripture saying they believe the Lord wants to use it to speak to you, yet it doesn’t seem to fit anywhere in your life? Hold it. I mean literally hold onto it – write it down, log it, memorize it.
I have a wonderful friend who has often done this for me. At times, the scripture or insight exactly fits with what I’m facing. Other times we talk through it and can’t seem to connect the dots. But I know she is a woman of God gifted in intercession and speaking into my life and others’. So I hold on to it.
One such scripture was Isaiah 30:21:
With your ears you will hear a word from behind you: “This is the way; stay on it, whether you go to the right or the left.”
To this point in our journey, we’ve progressed from a casual recipient of God’s gift of faith, just barely inside the fence surrounding the tabernacle, to a partner in his business functioning as His very presence on earth, just as the Ark of the Covenant did in the Most Holy Place of the tabernacle.
If we are now functioning as the Ark did, what can we learn from the Ark about what God considers representative of His presence on earth? What’s inside the Ark provides us great insight in answering this question.
Having come through the entrance of the courtyard of the tabernacle, progressing from the bronze altar, to the bronze basin, to the menorah, and then the table of showbread, our spirit and our mind are continually being transformed to be more closely aligned to God’s. We begin to desire more and more of Him.
As we see with His eyes into the spiritual realm, we begin to desire the same things He does. Our heart becomes more compassionate, our mind more discerning. We are filled with faith and want to participate in bringing about His will. (more…)