You Gave It All So That I Could Do the Same

"You didn’t die so that I could follow all the rules
You didn’t bleed so that we could make ourselves look good
You didn’t rise from the grave to keep me safe
You gave it all so that I could do the same"

Words To Warm The Heart

If you are looking for an example of humility look at the cross. - St. Thomas Aquinas

The word became flesh, he lived among us, and we saw his glory, the glory that he has from the Father as the only Son of the Father, full of grace and truth.  John 1:14

Christ became what we are that he might make us what he is.  St. Athanasius of Alexandria

Christmas Begins With Christ

We Need Christmas More Than Ever
by James Robison

As we enter into the Christmas season, we face a world of uncertainty, turbulence, and conflict. Economies rise and fall, racial strife simmers in the streets and on college campuses, and refugees flee murderous Islamists in the Middle East and Africa. Darkness seems to be closing in, but we are reminded that Jesus Christ came as the light unto the world.

Satan is the author and instigator of all evil. He is the very personification of it. Even those who doubt or deny God cannot deny there is an obvious force of evil present in our world. Jesus said Satan is the father of all lies and, above all, a thief and murderer. He seeks to destroy life—every precious aspect of it. When he is in control, he continually manifests despicable, unimaginable acts defying all logic. We are right to be abhorred by unspeakable brutality and murder of the innocent and the helpless, whether in the womb of an expectant mother, a concert hall in Paris, or the dusty streets of Aleppo.

Such is the case when the resistance and clear-mindedness on anyone’s part has been compromised and diminished. Many things can negatively impact our spiritual and mental condition to some degree: addiction to alcohol or drugs, damaging emotions such as bitterness or envy, emotional or physical exhaustion. It can even be the result of self-intoxication, as with Herod at the time of Christ’s birth. He ordered the murder of all little boys under two years old in Bethlehem (Matt. 2:16). Satanic? Yes. Demonic? Yes. Even so, it was Herod’s choice to act on his evil schemes. Satan so detests freedom and godliness that he seeks to destroy any deliverer or possibility of deliverance.

In the fatherless home and the dysfunctional community I grew up in, you cannot imagine the suggestions other kids made to me, along with the fiery darts (horrific suggestions) Satan fired my way. I was vulnerable; but thanks be to God, praying Christians, a pastor and his wife who never forgot the boy they cared for the first few years of my life, and then the witness of committed Christian teenagers led me to the Christ whose birth we’re about to celebrate. I am convinced that the prayers of others (even before my conversion to Christ) helped prevent me from giving into violent impulses, especially when my alcoholic father threatened to take my life. Sadly, some choose to give in to their anger and act out in unimaginable ways.

Jesus is the answer. He was my answer and He is the sole answer for those who have been devastated by recent events. Only a great God and a loving heavenly Father can give us the ultimate comfort. We rightly celebrate the birth, life, death, and resurrection of Jesus, because He is the only way to overcome evil and the evil one. He alone can direct our steps and help us build wise, secure walls of protection.

God’s Word should be our hedge of security. He wants His Word to be written in our hearts, not just carried in our hands. He wants His Word to carry and lead us and, as Paul said, write “letters in the hearts of other men’s lives” as a result of our consistent Christian testimony.

In addition to celebrating His birth, we need to praise God for the resurrection life He offers each day! Jesus came to overcome the evil one and to give us the ability to be delivered from that despicable, damaging influence. Because Christ was born and now lives, we live. May others see Jesus living in us.

Jesus is God’s answer to man’s weakness and evil’s intention. Christmas and the rest of His story can become our story. Jesus took this broken, fatherless, and impoverished boy writing this commentary and delivered me from destruction and the intentions of the evil one. He will do the same for all who receive Him and follow Him with their whole heart. Jesus is the light that pierces the darkness. He offers strength beyond ourselves and grants us the grace and ability to share the hope, joy, and peace that only He can give in the face of the most challenging possible circumstances. Just as the shepherds and wise men followed the light of the Star of Bethlehem, we must follow the light of the forever bright and Morning Star – Jesus!

May Christ shine His light in your heart and home.

Grace and Peace (2 Thessalonians 1: 2) 
Fernando Ortega

As we pray for France, images from a century ago illustrate this song based on 
Paul's greeting to the church of Thessalonica.

Unveiling the Mysteries of the Last Days


Dr. Kevin Clarkson and Author David Hamblin take an exhaustive approach to the study of the end times. Using the proven techniques of the scientific method, David put together a system of prophecy analysis that would allow for extremely complex theories to be tested against the many and varying passages of end times prophecy. 

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The Parable of the Vineyard Tenants

The Parable of the Vineyard Tenants
By David Weiss

Mark 12:1-5 "Yeshua began speaking to them in parables. “A man planted
a vineyard. He put a wall around it, dug a pit for the wine press and
built a tower; then he rented it to tenant-farmers and left. When
harvest-time came, he sent a servant to the tenants to collect his
share of the crop from the vineyard. But they took him, beat him up
and sent him away empty-handed. So he sent another servant; this one
they punched in the head and insulted. He sent another one, and him
they killed; and so with many others — some they beat up, others they

The Bible makes it clear in other places who Yeshua is referring to in
this parable of the vineyard owner. G-d is the vineyard owner and
those servants he sent to check on the vineyard were the prophets. It
goes on to say in the following verses that   after he sent his
servants, the vineyard owner sent his own son. They killed his son
with the assumption that now they could take over the entire vineyard
as their own. And that is exactly what the P'rushim did. They killed
the Son so they could exercise control over the whole vineyard.

In Revelation, the Kingdom of G-d is called a vineyard. It says at one
point during the judgements that people will be trampled in the
vineyard and that blood will flow out of the wine press. It is a
somewhat gruesome picture but it shows us how important of a sin it is
for people to worship idols and to try to control the Kingdom for
their own desires. G-d is a jealous G-d. He wants the heart of people
for himself but he will never force people to make the right choice
about walking with him and worshiping him. It is a simple choice -
worship him wholeheartedly and live or worship self and face eternal
condemnation. It is a choice we make a little at a time with each
decision we make.

Will we choose the right way or will we continue in our aim to serve
self instead? In the parable, the vineyard workers were given a choice
each time. Each time a servant was sent they were given the
opportunity to choose correctly. And each time they made the wrong
choice. It was all about selfishness. It is not easy to serve G-d and
to trust in him. We serve an unseen G-d. It seems to be easy to look
at what is in front of us and choose what we can see. But as we saw
with Avram in B'Resheet (Genesis) he chose to leave his homeland and
follow G-d's ways. He could not see for sure what was going to happen
in the future, he only knew he was called to leave. And the faith that
he showed was credited to him as righteousness.

The Bible tells us that the truly faithful ones to G-d walk by faith.
We cannot see what G-d will do for us. We cannot prove to others why
we follow G-d's plans instead of our own. All we can do is choose to
walk by faith. And that same faith will be credited to is as
righteousness. Recently my wife was laid off from her job. It is never
an easy thing to go through. And yet, even when she knew it was
coming, she chose the righteous way. She chose to believe that G-d has
a plan for her and that he will not forsake us or leave us. She chose
to believe that he is in control of it all and that he will show us
the next step for her.

We all face choices like that each and every day. When we walk by
faith it is scary. We hope for something we do not see and we trust in
G-d for the unseen. We trust him to take care of us and to shed his
light on the path before us. We turn to him as the vineyard owner and
we know that he sees all that goes on in his vineyard. When he sends
his servants to give us messages we trust in his message even when we
do not understand the message. We do not lean on our own understanding
but we lean on the one who has the plan for our lives.

Where do you need to trust him more today? Are you facing a
consequence of life that is scary? Is there something going on that is
out of your control? G-d does have a plan for each and every one of
his children. And sometimes when things happen it is tempting to lose
sight of his plan. Sometimes it is tempting to rely on our own efforts
to take care of things. Most people like to feel in control of their
own lives. They do not like to give control over to an unseen G-d. It
is one thing to go to corporate worship and acknowledge him and it is
another to walk it out each day. How are you walking? Do you seek to
control things and people around you or do you walk in trust knowing
that he is in control? No one said it would be easy, but it is the
right way to live, to walk in trust of him in all things.

David Weiss

The Difference Between Worldliness and Godliness

The difference between worldliness and godliness is a renewed mind. 
-Erwin W. Lutzer

Turn thou us unto thee, O Lord, and we shall be turned, 
renew our days as of old. Lamentation 5:21

Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, 
but  be transformed by the renewing of your mind. 
Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is 
--his good, pleasing and perfect will.  
Romans 12:2

Though this outer human nature of ours may be falling into decay, 
at the same time our inner human nature is renewed day by  day.  
2 Corinthians 4:16

By the reading of Scripture I am so renewed 
that all nature seems renewed around me and with me.  
Thomas Merton

Do not lie to one another, 
seeing that you have stripped off the old self with its practices 
and have clothed yourselves with the new self, 
which is being renewed in knowledge 
according to the image of its creator.
Colossians 3:9-10

A humble, lowly, contrite heart
Believing, true, and clean.
Which neither life nor death can part
From Him that dwells within,
Thy nature, gracious Lord, impart.
Come quickly from above;
Write Thy new Name upon my heart,
They new best Name of love.
Charles Wesley

A Nation Begging For Destruction, Part 2

A Nation Begging for Destruction - Part 2 

Who are the major prophetic voices today calling the United States to repentance? Find out with Dr. David Reagan on the show Christ in Prophecy.


Trusting in Lying Words

The word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord, saying, “Stand in the gate of the Lord’s house, and proclaim there this word, and say, ‘Hear the word of the Lord, all you of Judah who enter in at these gates to worship the Lord!’”Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: “Amend your ways and your doings, and I will cause you to dwell in this place. Do not trust in these lying words, saying, ‘The temple of the Lord, the temple of the Lord, the temple of the Lord are these.’

“For if you thoroughly amend your ways and your doings, if you thoroughly execute judgment between a man and his neighbor, if you do not oppress the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow, and do not shed innocent blood in this place, or walk after other gods to your hurt, then I will cause you to dwell in this place, in the land that I gave to your fathers forever and ever.

“Behold, you trust in lying words that cannot profit. Will you steal, murder, commit adultery, swear falsely, burn incense to Baal, and walk after other gods whom you do not know, 10 and then come and stand before Me in this house which is called by My name, and say, ‘We are delivered to do all these abominations’? 11 Has this house, which is called by My name, become a den of thieves in your eyes? Behold, I, even I, have seen it,” says the Lord.

12 “But go now to My place which was in Shiloh, where I set My name at the first, and see what I did to it because of the wickedness of My people Israel.13 And now, because you have done all these works,” says the Lord, “and I spoke to you, rising up early and speaking, but you did not hear, and I called you, but you did not answer, 14 therefore I will do to the house which is called by My name, in which you trust, and to this place which I gave to you and your fathers, as I have done to Shiloh. 15 And I will cast you out of My sight, as I have cast out all your brethren—the whole posterity of Ephraim.

16 “Therefore do not pray for this people, nor lift up a cry or prayer for them, nor make intercession to Me; for I will not hear you. 17 Do you not see what they do in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem? 18 The children gather wood, the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead dough, to make cakes for the queen of heaven; and they pour out drink offerings to other gods, that they may provoke Me to anger. 19 Do they provoke Me to anger?” says the Lord

Do they not provoke themselves, to the shame of their own faces?”

20 Therefore thus says the Lord God: “Behold, My anger and My fury will be poured out on this place—on man and on beast, on the trees of the field and on the fruit of the ground. And it will burn and not be quenched.”

21 Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: “Add your burnt offerings to your sacrifices and eat meat. 22 For I did not speak to your fathers, or command them in the day that I brought them out of the land of Egypt, concerning burnt offerings or sacrifices. 23 But this is what I commanded them, saying, ‘Obey My voice, and I will be your God, and you shall be My people. And walk in all the ways that I have commanded you, that it may be well with you.’ 24 Yet they did not obey or incline their ear, but followed the counsels and the dictates of their evil hearts, and went backward and not forward. 25 Since the day that your fathers came out of the land of Egypt until this day, I have even sent to you all My servants the prophets, daily rising up early and sending them. 26 Yet they did not obey Me or incline their ear, but stiffened their neck. They did worse than their fathers.

27 “Therefore you shall speak all these words to them, but they will not obey you. You shall also call to them, but they will not answer you.

Judgment on Obscene Religion

28 “So you shall say to them, ‘This is a nation that does not obey the voice of the Lord their God nor receive correction. Truth has perished and has been cut off from their mouth. 29 Cut off your hair and cast it away, and take up a lamentation on the desolate heights; for the Lord has rejected and forsaken the generation of His wrath.’ 30 For the children of Judah have done evil in My sight,” says the Lord. “They have set their abominations in the house which is called by My name, to pollute it. 31 And they have built the high places of Tophet, which is in the Valley of the Son of Hinnom, to burn their sons and their daughters in the fire, which I did not command, nor did it come into My heart.

32 “Therefore behold, the days are coming,” says the Lord, “when it will no more be called Tophet, or the Valley of the Son of Hinnom, but the Valley of Slaughter; for they will bury in Tophet until there is no room. 33 The corpses of this people will be food for the birds of the heaven and for the beasts of the earth. And no one will frighten them away. 34 Then I will cause to cease from the cities of Judah and from the streets of Jerusalem the voice of mirth and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride. For the land shall be desolate.

New King James Version (NKJV)
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Messages for a Rebellious Nation: A Nation Begging for Destruction

Is the United States a nation in open rebellion against God? 

Find out with Dr. David Reagan on the show Christ in Prophecy.


To Learn More Please Read

Setting Ourselves Apart From The World

8 Tishrei 5776
by David Weiss

Deuteronomy 22:8-12:

“When you build a new house, you must build a low wall around your roof; otherwise someone may fall from it,and you will be responsible for his death. “You are not to sow two kinds of seed between your rows of vines; if you do, both the two harvested crops and the yield from the vines must be forfeited. You are not to plow with an ox and a donkey together. You are not to wear clothing woven with two kinds of thread, wool and linen together. “You are to make for yourself twisted cords on the four corners of the garment you wrap around yourself."

This chapter of Deuteronomy has a series of commands in it that seem somewhat random at first. If you read them in the context of the entire Torah then you see how they show the theme of the Torah. A big part of what G-d was showing in the Torah was the idea of being
different than the people who were living in the land they were about to possess. Over and over, we see the idea he was communicating was to not be like them. He did not want intermarriage with them nor to worship their idols. That is why he wanted the Israelites to defeat them in battle as they entered the land. He didn't want them to be
influenced into idolatry by them.

Here in this section of verses he gives rules for things he did not want to exist side by side. He didn't want two kinds of crops sewn side by side, or two different kinds of animals to plow side by side or two kinds of material to be sewn together. Sometimes people try to look for a modern application of these rules. Not that there is anything wrong with understanding the modern day application of eating pork (for example, from the dietary laws) but that it somewhat misses the point. It's okay to understand them in that light but the
original purpose is found in the context of the obedience it required of them.

Some people also believe that the dietary rules and other aspects of  the Torah no longer apply. They base this on verses in the New Covenant which are often taken out of context. They use Kefa's vision in Acts of a sheet being lowered with unclean animals, and the command to eat from it as being a nullification of the dietary laws. But he never actually ate from them. It was a picture from G-d to not call Gentiles unclean but for Kefa to tell them about the Gospel. I personally believe the dietary restrictions still apply, but only to
Jewish people. The book of Acts makes it clear that they do not apply to gentile believers. Are they a matter of salvation? I am not convinced they are, but neither am I convinced they have been nullified for Jewish believers.

This context of the Torah does apply to all believers. The Bible teaches us to be in the world but not of the world. It is telling us that it is still true that we are to be different than the world around us. How else can we show unbelievers that we are different from
the world? If we make business decisions like them, how will they see
us as different? If we act just like them, how will they see us as  different? You may not feel led to wear garments with only one kind of material or not believe you can only eat certain foods. But when we go the opposite direction and do everything the same way as the world
does it is hard for them to see a difference in us and therefore a need to change.

I know two different people whose faith led them to make hard decisions in their work a number of years ago. One is a police officer who was told to sign a blank arrest report because the person arrested was the child of a politician. He refused to do so and eventually
everything worked out. Another was a plant manager whose boss wanted him to do something similar. (Sign a paper that was not true.) When he refused, he ended up losing his job and had to get a job that paid half of what that one paid. Both were led by their faith. Both had different outcomes. We do not know what results our faithful actions will bring about and that is why it is called faith.

The bottom line for us today is not whether I am correct in my assertions or whether you agree with them. The bottom line is that  from the beginning of any kind of organization to how we worship G-d,he has been very clear about one thing: we are supposed to stand apart
from the world and how they live for themselves, versus how we are supposed to live our lives for G-d. Whether we do that by following the rules of the Torah or by living our lives in a way that shows the world we are different is not the important part. Living for G-d;
walking with him, and listening to his counsel are how we set ourselves apart for him. The great part is that it does not have to befor show in any way. We just need to live our lives for him and they will see the difference in our lives. Then we will have the opportunity to tell them about him.

What Is Your Heart Set Upon?

Today's prayer

Dear Lord Jesus, There were times when Your silence was powerful. Other times Your wise questions and Scripture responses spoke volumes. You are the best example of thinking before speaking or acting; being angry without sinning; being kind to your enemies and in so doing, putting them to shame or "heaping coals of fire" upon them. I love Your Word, dear Word who was in the beginning, is now and forever will be. I worship You dear Son of the Blessed. May You be honored through my life. In thankfulness and love I come to You, asking forgiveness.
Devotional by David Weiss  --2 Tishrei 5776
Divrei Hayamim Bet (2 Chronicles) 1:10-13 "So now, give me wisdom and knowledge; so that I will be able to lead this people. For who is equal to judging this great people of yours?” G-d said to Shlomo, “Because you set your heart on this — because, instead of asking for riches, wealth, honor, the death of those who hate you, or long life, you asked for wisdom and knowledge for yourself, so that you would be able to judge my people, over whom I made you king — not only are wisdom and knowledge being given to you, but I will also give you riches, wealth and honor such as no king before you has ever had; and no king after you will have as much.” So Shlomo came away from the high place at Giv‘on, from in front of the tent of meeting, to Yerushalayim; and he ruled over Isra’el."

Yesterday (Monday) was New Years Day on the Hebrew calendar. We are now in a new year and the High Holy days have begun. New Years day is called Rosh Hashanah which means "the head of the year." It also begins the days of awe which lead up to Yom Kippur the Day of Atonement which is next Wed. The days of awe are a time to reflect on the past year so that we might know what sins we are repenting of on that day. It is a day of fasting. Messianic Jews see this differently because we know that Yeshua the Messiah died for our sins. But we still observe these Biblical holidays as part of our heritage. It is what Shlomo spoke of to G-d in the verses preceding this section.

G-d approached Shlomo in a time of worship and asked him what he wanted from him. Shlomo said that because he was king as a result of G-d's promise to his father David, that he would like wisdom and knowledge to be able to rule. We see that request here in verse 10. G-d's answer is one you have probably seen before. He says that because Shlomo asked for wisdom instead of wealth, riches and honor, that he would give him all of those things. G-d is not a crystal ball which we use to make wishes. He is the giver of all good and perfect gifts. And when we ask things according to his will he often gives us
what we ask for or even more. Although it may not look exactly like we thought it would.

I cannot fully imagine what it was like for Shlomo to do this. I can be as selfish as the next person. So my effort in prayer is to seek to understand what to ask for. Yeshua gave us understanding of how to pray. He gave us what we often refer to as "The L-rd's Prayer." Some people call it "the our Father" since that is what it starts with.From Matt 6:9-13 "You, therefore, pray like this: ‘Our Father in heaven! May your Name be kept holy. May your Kingdom come, your will be done on earth as in heaven. Give us the food we need today. Forgiveus what we have done wrong, as we too have forgiven those who have
wronged us. And do not lead us into hard testing, but keep us safe from the Evil One. For kingship, power and glory are yours forever.  Amen.’"

Yeshua did not say that G-d wouldn't give us other things, he just shows us the right attitude to have in prayer. As believers in the marketplace, our effort is not to find the best job or work at a place that makes us happy. Our job is to pray for wisdom of how to do the job he gave us. It is also to intercede for those around us that they might come to know G-d. Praying that his Kingdom come and his will be done is the attitude we are to have. He may give us a promotion or he may give us wealth and honor or even another job, but those are not our goal. Our goal is to be faithful in the things he has given us.
How do you pray at work? What is your goal there?
The world tells us much about upward mobility at work and in society.There are hundreds of books, blogs and seminars telling us how to achieve these things. Yet they aren't necessarily what G-d is leading us towards. Yes, he does reward some with those kinds of things but        they are not what we should seek. His wisdom is what we should seek.

What good is it for us to achieve those things if we do not have his wisdom to carry them out? Yeshua also said to seek first the Kingdom of G-d and his righteous and then the other things would be added to us. The "other things" he was referring to were food and clothing.

The last verse from today says that after this time of worship and                                     asking for wisdom, that Shlomo went back and ruled over Isra'el. That  is the main point of seeking G-d's wisdom and his righteousness and for his Kingdom first. It is for us to rule in this world. Adam was given dominion in the world. It is not about position or wealth or anything other than ruling according to G-d's will. In the book of Revelation, it says that that those who overcome the world's system will reign with Messiah in the millennium. We are not all called to rule or reign in the world's system right now. But what we do each day as we try to live for him is going to be rewarded in a spiritual way. And that is worth all the effort to get it right by walking in his wisdom.

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