9/25/11

JOY


This picture brings back memories.  One and only one time have I seen this and that was 47 years ago.  I had just started to go steady with my Linda and was visiting her home for the first time.  Her mom (Dorothy) was giving the baby (her brother David) a bath in the sink.  That was the first time I had ever seen anyone do this and although David was not quite as happy as this baby, it still was something to see.  As for this picture, what struck me was how happy the baby is.  There is a special kind of joy associated with bathing, one that makes whatever time you have doing it WAY TO SHORT.  But, it also raises a question, and that is... What makes YOU joyful??  Take a look at the following passage and I will talk a bit about one of the ways I understand joy.

WEB: Philippians Chapter 2
[12] So then, my beloved, even as you have always obeyed, not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. [13] For it is God who works in you both to will and to work, for his good pleasure. [14] Do all things without murmurings and disputes, [15] that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you are seen as lights in the world, [16] holding up the word of life; that I may have something to boast in the day of Christ, that I didn’t run in vain nor labor in vain. [17] Yes, and if I am poured out on the sacrifice and service of your faith, I rejoice, and rejoice with you all. [18] In the same way, you also rejoice, and rejoice with me.

[19] But I hope in the Lord Jesus to send Timothy to you soon, that I also may be cheered up when I know how you are doing. [20] For I have no one else like-minded, who will truly care about you. [21] For they all seek their own, not the things of Jesus Christ. [22] But you know the proof of him, that, as a child serves a father, so he served with me in furtherance of the Good News. [23] Therefore I hope to send him at once, as soon as I see how it will go with me.

Paul was a servant of his brethren; he loved for them, cared for them, was concerned for them and prayed for them. So, because of this, he sent a man after his own heart to them.  Timothy was young, inexperienced and somewhat timid... but he did care and tried to do the best he could for others.  Nice way to be remembered!!!  The first sermon I ever heard at Northeast School of Biblical Studies was by brother Ed Healy.  It has stayed in my mind for 32 years because of its simplicity and profoundness.  Briefly, JOY means Jesus first, others second and yourself last of all.  In a way, its almost a complete definition of Christian discipleship.  If "JOY" is not a good way to characterize your lifestyle, then today is a good time to change.  You may or may not look like the baby in the picture, BUT, you will be a better person for it.  Oh, yes; I forgot one thing....Yyippee!!!


OT Bible Reading 9/25

Sept. 25
Psalms 101-104

Psa 101:1 I will sing of loving kindness and justice. To you, Yahweh, I will sing praises.
Psa 101:2 I will be careful to live a blameless life. When will you come to me? I will walk within my house with a blameless heart.
Psa 101:3 I will set no vile thing before my eyes. I hate the deeds of faithless men. They will not cling to me.
Psa 101:4 A perverse heart will be far from me. I will have nothing to do with evil.
Psa 101:5 I will silence whoever secretly slanders his neighbor. I won't tolerate one who is haughty and conceited.
Psa 101:6 My eyes will be on the faithful of the land, that they may dwell with me. He who walks in a perfect way, he will serve me.
Psa 101:7 He who practices deceit won't dwell within my house. He who speaks falsehood won't be established before my eyes.
Psa 101:8 Morning by morning, I will destroy all the wicked of the land; to cut off all the workers of iniquity from Yahweh's city.
Psa 102:1 Hear my prayer, Yahweh! Let my cry come to you.
Psa 102:2 Don't hide your face from me in the day of my distress. Turn your ear to me. Answer me quickly in the day when I call.
Psa 102:3 For my days consume away like smoke. My bones are burned as a firebrand.
Psa 102:4 My heart is blighted like grass, and withered, for I forget to eat my bread.
Psa 102:5 By reason of the voice of my groaning, my bones stick to my skin.
Psa 102:6 I am like a pelican of the wilderness. I have become as an owl of the waste places.
Psa 102:7 I watch, and have become like a sparrow that is alone on the housetop.
Psa 102:8 My enemies reproach me all day. Those who are mad at me use my name as a curse.
Psa 102:9 For I have eaten ashes like bread, and mixed my drink with tears,
Psa 102:10 Because of your indignation and your wrath, for you have taken me up, and thrown me away.
Psa 102:11 My days are like a long shadow. I have withered like grass.
Psa 102:12 But you, Yahweh, will abide forever; your renown endures to all generations.
Psa 102:13 You will arise and have mercy on Zion; for it is time to have pity on her. Yes, the set time has come.
Psa 102:14 For your servants take pleasure in her stones, and have pity on her dust.
Psa 102:15 So the nations will fear the name of Yahweh; all the kings of the earth your glory.
Psa 102:16 For Yahweh has built up Zion. He has appeared in his glory.
Psa 102:17 He has responded to the prayer of the destitute, and has not despised their prayer.
Psa 102:18 This will be written for the generation to come. A people which will be created will praise Yah.
Psa 102:19 For he has looked down from the height of his sanctuary. From heaven, Yahweh saw the earth;
Psa 102:20 to hear the groans of the prisoner; to free those who are condemned to death;
Psa 102:21 that men may declare the name of Yahweh in Zion, and his praise in Jerusalem;
Psa 102:22 when the peoples are gathered together, the kingdoms, to serve Yahweh.
Psa 102:23 He weakened my strength along the course. He shortened my days.
Psa 102:24 I said, "My God, don't take me away in the midst of my days. Your years are throughout all generations.
Psa 102:25 Of old, you laid the foundation of the earth. The heavens are the work of your hands.
Psa 102:26 They will perish, but you will endure. Yes, all of them will wear out like a garment. You will change them like a cloak, and they will be changed.
Psa 102:27 But you are the same. Your years will have no end.
Psa 102:28 The children of your servants will continue. Their seed will be established before you."
Psa 103:1 Praise Yahweh, my soul! All that is within me, praise his holy name!
Psa 103:2 Praise Yahweh, my soul, and don't forget all his benefits;
Psa 103:3 who forgives all your sins; who heals all your diseases;
Psa 103:4 who redeems your life from destruction; who crowns you with loving kindness and tender mercies;
Psa 103:5 who satisfies your desire with good things, so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's.
Psa 103:6 Yahweh executes righteous acts, and justice for all who are oppressed.
Psa 103:7 He made known his ways to Moses, his deeds to the children of Israel.
Psa 103:8 Yahweh is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abundant in loving kindness.
Psa 103:9 He will not always accuse; neither will he stay angry forever.
Psa 103:10 He has not dealt with us according to our sins, nor repaid us for our iniquities.
Psa 103:11 For as the heavens are high above the earth, so great is his loving kindness toward those who fear him.
Psa 103:12 As far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.
Psa 103:13 Like a father has compassion on his children, so Yahweh has compassion on those who fear him.
Psa 103:14 For he knows how we are made. He remembers that we are dust.
Psa 103:15 As for man, his days are like grass. As a flower of the field, so he flourishes.
Psa 103:16 For the wind passes over it, and it is gone. Its place remembers it no more.
Psa 103:17 But Yahweh's loving kindness is from everlasting to everlasting with those who fear him, his righteousness to children's children;
Psa 103:18 to those who keep his covenant, to those who remember to obey his precepts.
Psa 103:19 Yahweh has established his throne in the heavens. His kingdom rules over all.
Psa 103:20 Praise Yahweh, you angels of his, who are mighty in strength, who fulfill his word, obeying the voice of his word.
Psa 103:21 Praise Yahweh, all you armies of his, you servants of his, who do his pleasure.
Psa 103:22 Praise Yahweh, all you works of his, in all places of his dominion. Praise Yahweh, my soul!
Psa 104:1 Bless Yahweh, my soul. Yahweh, my God, you are very great. You are clothed with honor and majesty.
Psa 104:2 He covers himself with light as with a garment. He stretches out the heavens like a curtain.
Psa 104:3 He lays the beams of his chambers in the waters. He makes the clouds his chariot. He walks on the wings of the wind.
Psa 104:4 He makes his messengers winds; his servants flames of fire.
Psa 104:5 He laid the foundations of the earth, that it should not be moved forever.
Psa 104:6 You covered it with the deep as with a cloak. The waters stood above the mountains.
Psa 104:7 At your rebuke they fled. At the voice of your thunder they hurried away.
Psa 104:8 The mountains rose, the valleys sank down, to the place which you had assigned to them.
Psa 104:9 You have set a boundary that they may not pass over; that they don't turn again to cover the earth.
Psa 104:10 He sends forth springs into the valleys. They run among the mountains.
Psa 104:11 They give drink to every animal of the field. The wild donkeys quench their thirst.
Psa 104:12 The birds of the sky nest by them. They sing among the branches.
Psa 104:13 He waters the mountains from his chambers. The earth is filled with the fruit of your works.
Psa 104:14 He causes the grass to grow for the livestock, and plants for man to cultivate, that he may bring forth food out of the earth:
Psa 104:15 wine that makes glad the heart of man, oil to make his face to shine, and bread that strengthens man's heart.
Psa 104:16 Yahweh's trees are well watered, the cedars of Lebanon, which he has planted;
Psa 104:17 where the birds make their nests. The stork makes its home in the fir trees.
Psa 104:18 The high mountains are for the wild goats. The rocks are a refuge for the rock badgers.
Psa 104:19 He appointed the moon for seasons. The sun knows when to set.
Psa 104:20 You make darkness, and it is night, in which all the animals of the forest prowl.
Psa 104:21 The young lions roar after their prey, and seek their food from God.
Psa 104:22 The sun rises, and they steal away, and lay down in their dens.
Psa 104:23 Man goes forth to his work, to his labor until the evening.
Psa 104:24 Yahweh, how many are your works! In wisdom have you made them all. The earth is full of your riches.
Psa 104:25 There is the sea, great and wide, in which are innumerable living things, both small and large animals.
Psa 104:26 There the ships go, and leviathan, whom you formed to play there.
Psa 104:27 These all wait for you, that you may give them their food in due season.
Psa 104:28 You give to them; they gather. You open your hand; they are satisfied with good.
Psa 104:29 You hide your face: they are troubled; you take away their breath: they die, and return to the dust.
Psa 104:30 You send forth your Spirit: they are created. You renew the face of the ground.
Psa 104:31 Let the glory of Yahweh endure forever. Let Yahweh rejoice in his works.
Psa 104:32 He looks at the earth, and it trembles. He touches the mountains, and they smoke.
Psa 104:33 I will sing to Yahweh as long as I live. I will sing praise to my God while I have any being.
Psa 104:34 Let your meditation be sweet to him. I will rejoice in Yahweh.
Psa 104:35 Let sinners be consumed out of the earth. Let the wicked be no more. Bless Yahweh, my soul. Praise Yah!

NT Bible Reading 9/25

Sept. 25
2 Corinthians 5

2Co 5:1 For we know that if the earthly house of our tent is dissolved, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal, in the heavens.
2Co 5:2 For most certainly in this we groan, longing to be clothed with our habitation which is from heaven;
2Co 5:3 if so be that being clothed we will not be found naked.
2Co 5:4 For indeed we who are in this tent do groan, being burdened; not that we desire to be unclothed, but that we desire to be clothed, that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life.
2Co 5:5 Now he who made us for this very thing is God, who also gave to us the down payment of the Spirit.
2Co 5:6 Therefore, we are always confident and know that while we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord;
2Co 5:7 for we walk by faith, not by sight.
2Co 5:8 We are of good courage, I say, and are willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be at home with the Lord.
2Co 5:9 Therefore also we make it our aim, whether at home or absent, to be well pleasing to him.
2Co 5:10 For we must all be revealed before the judgment seat of Christ; that each one may receive the things in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.
2Co 5:11 Knowing therefore the fear of the Lord, we persuade men, but we are revealed to God; and I hope that we are revealed also in your consciences.
2Co 5:12 For we are not commending ourselves to you again, but speak as giving you occasion of boasting on our behalf, that you may have something to answer those who boast in appearance, and not in heart.
2Co 5:13 For if we are beside ourselves, it is for God. Or if we are of sober mind, it is for you.
2Co 5:14 For the love of Christ constrains us; because we judge thus, that one died for all, therefore all died.
2Co 5:15 He died for all, that those who live should no longer live to themselves, but to him who for their sakes died and rose again.
2Co 5:16 Therefore we know no one after the flesh from now on. Even though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now we know him so no more.
2Co 5:17 Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old things have passed away. Behold, all things have become new.
2Co 5:18 But all things are of God, who reconciled us to himself through Jesus Christ, and gave to us the ministry of reconciliation;
2Co 5:19 namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to himself, not reckoning to them their trespasses, and having committed to us the word of reconciliation.
2Co 5:20 We are therefore ambassadors on behalf of Christ, as though God were entreating by us: we beg you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.
2Co 5:21 For him who knew no sin he made to be sin on our behalf; so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.