1 John 5
Numbers 15 – Laws Concerning Offerings. Earlier, the parents rejected G_d’s gracious offering because the bad news spread by the rumor-mongers. So, what the parents rejected, would be given to the children. What came next must have surprised the adults. “When you finally settle in the land I am giving you, you will offer special gifts as a pleasing aroma to the LORD. These gifts may take the form of a burnt offering, a sacrifice to fulfill a vow, a voluntary offering, or an offering at any of your annual festivals, and they may be taken from your herds of cattle or your flocks of sheep and goats (2-3). What G_d offers us, and we reject, will always go to someone else and we most likely will see it with our own eyes. In the new land, there would be house-keeping rules and one of them was taking care of sin. It is interesting that when we sin whether intentionally or unintentionally, the person had to bring an offering as a way of making things right again. In a community, when sin can go unchecked, rebellion breaks out – sort of like what happened in Minneapolis a week ago.
Psalms 75 – “Do Not Destroy.” It seems, that nothing takes G_d by surprise. His timing is not like ours (2 Peter 3:8). G_d says, “At the time I have planned, I will bring justice against the wicked. When the earthquakes and its people live in turmoil, I am the one who keeps its foundations firm (2-3). For the promise to be uttered, there must have been prayers lifted in concert for his protection because G_d does nothing arbitrarily. When we have been the author of our troubles, it will be pointed out and we have to make things right before he will move upon us. “So if you are presenting a sacrifice at the altar in the Temple and you suddenly remember that someone has something against you, leave your sacrifice there at the altar. Go and be reconciled to that person. Then come and offer your sacrifice to G_d (Matthew 5:23-24). As children of G_d, we are held to a higher standard despite what the world may do. But as for me, I will always proclaim what G_d has done;
I will sing praises to the G_d of Jacob. For G_d says, “I will break the strength of the wicked, but I will increase the power of the G_dly (9-10).”
Proverbs 14 – Consequences and Outcomes. There is one thing about our actions that is almost always forgotten and that is, what we do will either bring us honor or bring us to utter destruction. When we receive honor, we as humans tend to become “proud” and think that the one-time occurrence will be a way of life. A wise woman builds her home, but a foolish woman tears it down with her own hands (1). Equally, rewards always come in time and in direct proportion to the effort we put into our work and this goes for substandard and above standard. 22 If you plan to do evil, you will be lost; if you plan to do good, you will receive unfailing love and faithfulness. Work brings profit,
but mere talk leads to poverty (22-23).
Matthew 10 – The Disciples Go to Bootcamp. The purpose of Bootcamp is to prepare the individual for the tasks of military service and give them skills that they would need. During the three years of ministry, Jesus protected the group (John 17:12). Because he knew what lay ahead, Jesus had to prepare them to endure the testing. “Don’t go to the Gentiles or the Samaritans, but only to the people of Israel—G_d’s lost sheep (5-6).” One of the hardest people you will ever try to reach for the Kingdom of G_d will always be the members of your own family. The task at hand would be difficult and sometimes troublesome because the men were walking into the Devil’s layer and reaching people with the good news of the King of G_d. “Look, I am sending you out as sheep among wolves. So be as shrewd as snakes and harmless as doves. But beware! For you will be handed over to the courts and will be flogged with whips in the synagogues. You will stand trial before governors and kings because you are my followers. But this will be your opportunity to tell the rulers and other unbelievers about me. When you are arrested, don’t worry about how to respond or what to say. G_d will give you the right words at the right time. For it is not you who will be speaking—it will be the Spirit of your Father speaking through you (16-20).
1 John 5 – Faith in the Son of G_d. Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has become a child of G_d. And everyone who loves the Father loves his children, too. We know we love G_d’s children if we love G_d and obey his commandments (1-2). The nation Israel were called “G_d’s chosen people” and this title was like “gold” to them and they would flaunt it. Paul said, Being descendants of Abraham doesn’t make them truly Abraham’s children. For the Scriptures say, “Isaac is the son through whom your descendants will be counted,” though Abraham had other children, too. This means that Abraham’s physical descendants are not necessarily children of G_d. Only the children of the promise are considered to be Abraham’s children (Romans 9:7-8). If we call ourselves by the name of the Lord Jesus, then we must be prepared to show it in and out of sight of the world. Living in the Kingdom of G_d requires daily watching over the affairs of our life and holding each other accountable (18-20). Dear children, keep away from anything that might take G_d’s place in your hearts (21).