GETTING THE MOST FROM GOD'S WORD:

"Do NOT labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to everlasting LIFE..." - The Gospel of John 6:27 (NKJV)
A systematic and daily reading of the Word of God is important in maintaining a strong Christian life. Establish a daily quiet time with God and His Word. Pray that the Holy Spirit will help you understand what you read. By following our daily Bible reading schedule through this blog, you will be able to read the Bible through in a year. Please note that you may utilize the ‘BIBLE READER’ app that is installed at the bottom of this webpage to assist you in reading the specified scripture portion for today.

To get the MOST from God's Word, please do the following intentionally:
1. REQUEST God to connect with you as you read the word of God with FOCUS and OPENNESS to see what God wants to speak with you.
2. READ the selected sections of Scripture slowly as you mark the words and phrases that intrigue you, even reading them the second time to get a better understanding.
3. REFLECT on what God is communicating to you; stopping long enough to let the seed of God's Word take root in your heart.
4. RESPOND to the passage speaking directly to God about what is in your heart, and then look out for ways to live out what you find - individually, and to others within your church and elsewhere.

As you read and meditate, ask yourself the following three questions:
a) What is God speaking to me through this passage?
b) Is there a command, a promise or a warning for me?
c) Is there an example for me to follow?

Please POST your comments below if there is a thought or message that the Lord has spoken to you through the passage that you are reading and meditating today. Please make sure that your post is aligned to the scripture passage mentioned at the header. All comments should pertain to the relevant scripture portions only, and should be aimed to glorify God (the true author of 'The Bible') & edify everyone who visits this blog site daily - both young and old. May God bless you abundantly for encouraging others through your comments!

Let's PRAY...
LORD, give me the desire to take a little time out of my busy schedule today as I read and meditate on Your Word. Give me this day MY DAILY BREAD. Speak to me clearly & lead me today as my Good Shepherd. Help me to be a blessing to others who interact with me as I attempt to be a living witness of Your Word today. In Your Name I pray, AMEN.

Saturday, February 13, 2016

The IMPORTANCE of setting up ‘REMINDERS’ to OBEY GOD

The IMPORTANCE of setting up ‘REMINDERS’ to OBEY GOD

February 13 Bible Reading: Numbers Chapters 13-15

Again the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, "Speak to the children of Israel: Tell them to make tassels on the corners of their garments throughout their generations, and to put a blue thread in the tassels of the corners. And you shall have the tassel, that you may look upon it and remember all the commandments of the Lord and do them, and that you may not follow the harlotry to which your own heart and your own eyes are inclined, and that you may remember and do all My commandments, and be holy for your God." (Num. 15:37-40)

In this day and age when people are trying to multi-task and juggle different activities around their daily schedule, it is good to set up reminders for ourselves. The main reason for this is because in the busyness of doing different things, we tend to forget some really important dates or events or things that we have to accomplish within set deadlines. We may set up reminders through post-it notes or, having reminders set up in our online calendars, which automatically flash out these reminders at the correct set times. In fact, each of us needs to have reminders to keep us thinking rightly about God and our relationship with Him!

Speaking of reminders, during the time of Moses, the Israelites were commanded to make tassels on the corners of their garments and to put a blue thread in the tassels of the corners. It is worthwhile to note that blue speaks about ‘heaven’, and this reminder was intended to speak to them about being holy for the sake of Jehovah and obeying all of His commandments. They were to remember how God had delivered them from the bondage of Egypt! According to the Jewish tradition, there were 8 threads and 5 knots in each tassel, suggesting the number 13. The numerical value of the Hebrew word for tassel is 600. In this way they were reminded of the 613 laws of the Hebrew legal code, and the need for obeying them all.

Thus, tassels were worn around the hem of the clothes to remind the Israelites to do God’s will. Apparently, they had an upper garment folded into a quadrangular shape, and the tassels were to be put on each of these corners. The wearing of tassels on the corners of garments was thus a beautiful sign of great significance. This is what the Bible scholar Kenneth Jones had to say about this matter: “As the Christians use the symbols of the cross, the fish, or the yoke, so the Hebrews were given the tassel on their clothing, to remind them of their heritage, and of the commandments of God. Orthodox Jews today still wear the tallith (Jewish prayer shawl) at certain times, though they discontinued wearing fringed garments all the time by the thirteenth century A.D.”

God didn’t want His people to forget His commandments, and so this visual reminder of the duty to obey the Law was given because of the serious consequences of failure to obey. Why was that necessary? Could the Israelites really forget something as important as the instructions received at Mount Sinai? Yes, they not only could but did on numerous occasions, which are recorded in various places within the books of Moses itself  (see Lev. 10:1–3, 16–18; 24:10–11; Num. 11:1–3; 15:32–36).

It is important for us to set up reminders for ourselves so that we will remember God’s Word and remember to keep ourselves holy for God. The Word in Life Study Bible has suggested a few ways how we can set up reminders in this regard:
  • Upon arriving at work each day, we can read a proverb from the book of Proverbs. Each one is short, to the point, and practical.
  • We can carry cards in our pockets or purse that have Scripture verses printed on them, and scan one or two during break-time.
  • We can use a calendar that has a Bible verse printed on each day’s leaf.
  • We can ask our spouse or a close friend to pray a short prayer with us sometime during each work day.
  • We can keep a daily ‘to do’ list that includes at least one specific action step by which we can visibly identify with the work and values of Christ.
  • We can keep a copy of the Bible near us always, and read it regularly whenever we get a chance.
  • Lastly, we can listen to audio Bible in our car or other listening devices that we carry.
Let us never forget that the tassels were small things, yet they carried a big message: Israel belonged to God and must respect and obey His commandments. It is not wrong to have reminders that point us to God, provided they don’t replace God or His Word. We are to “seek those things which are above at all times.

"If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory." (Col. 3:1-4)

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