Not just for birds...

They look like Pigeons to me, but I am not exactly sure what they are.  But I am sure that they are close to one another and that is the important thing to notice.  I picked this picture today because it reminded me of an good sermon I heard in church today from the following passage...

World English Bible: I Corinthians Chapter 13

[1] If I speak with the languages of men and of angels, but don’t have love, I have become sounding brass, or a clanging cymbal. [2] If I have the gift of prophecy, and know all mysteries and all knowledge; and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but don’t have love, I am nothing. [3] If I dole out all my goods to feed the poor, and if I give my body to be burned, but don’t have love, it profits me nothing.

[4] Love is patient and is kind; love doesn’t envy. Love doesn’t brag, is not proud, [5] doesn’t behave itself inappropriately, doesn’t seek its own way, is not provoked, takes no account of evil; [6] doesn’t rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; [7] bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. [8] Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will be done away with. Where there are various languages, they will cease. Where there is knowledge, it will be done away with. [9] For we know in part, and we prophesy in part; [10] but when that which is complete has come, then that which is partial will be done away with. [11] When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I felt as a child, I thought as a child. Now that I have become a man, I have put away childish things. [12] For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I will know fully, even as I was also fully known. [13] But now faith, hope, and love remain—these three. The greatest of these is love.

For many of us this is a familiar chapter of the New Testament; but what I found interesting was that at the end of the lesson, the preacher asked us to insert "I" where the characteristics of love are listed in the emboldened verses above.  I included the entire chapter for context sake and to clarify those bold verses.  Love extends from love of self to friends, family and the body of Christ and its very good to ask yourself: do I really love the way I should be loving?  If you aren't, change; if you are, try to love more.  Like the birds in the picture, you will grow closer with others and to God as well.  Something to think about on a cold rainy Sunday...

Feb. 26 Exodus 7

Feb. 26
Exodus 7

Exo 7:1 Yahweh said to Moses, "Behold, I have made you as God to Pharaoh; and Aaron your brother shall be your prophet.
Exo 7:2 You shall speak all that I command you; and Aaron your brother shall speak to Pharaoh, that he let the children of Israel go out of his land.
Exo 7:3 I will harden Pharaoh's heart, and multiply my signs and my wonders in the land of Egypt.
Exo 7:4 But Pharaoh will not listen to you, and I will lay my hand on Egypt, and bring forth my armies, my people the children of Israel, out of the land of Egypt by great judgments.
Exo 7:5 The Egyptians shall know that I am Yahweh, when I stretch forth my hand on Egypt, and bring out the children of Israel from among them."
Exo 7:6 Moses and Aaron did so. As Yahweh commanded them, so they did.
Exo 7:7 Moses was eighty years old, and Aaron eighty-three years old, when they spoke to Pharaoh.
Exo 7:8 Yahweh spoke to Moses and to Aaron, saying,
Exo 7:9 "When Pharaoh speaks to you, saying, 'Perform a miracle!' then you shall tell Aaron, 'Take your rod, and cast it down before Pharaoh, that it become a serpent.' "
Exo 7:10 Moses and Aaron went in to Pharaoh, and they did so, as Yahweh had commanded: and Aaron cast down his rod before Pharaoh and before his servants, and it became a serpent.
Exo 7:11 Then Pharaoh also called for the wise men and the sorcerers. They also, the magicians of Egypt, did in like manner with their enchantments.
Exo 7:12 For they cast down every man his rod, and they became serpents: but Aaron's rod swallowed up their rods.
Exo 7:13 Pharaoh's heart was hardened, and he didn't listen to them; as Yahweh had spoken.
Exo 7:14 Yahweh said to Moses, "Pharaoh's heart is stubborn. He refuses to let the people go.
Exo 7:15 Go to Pharaoh in the morning. Behold, he goes out to the water; and you shall stand by the river's bank to meet him; and the rod which was turned to a serpent you shall take in your hand.
Exo 7:16 You shall tell him, 'Yahweh, the God of the Hebrews, has sent me to you, saying, "Let my people go, that they may serve me in the wilderness:" and behold, until now you haven't listened.
Exo 7:17 Thus says Yahweh, "In this you shall know that I am Yahweh. Behold, I will strike with the rod that is in my hand on the waters which are in the river, and they shall be turned to blood.
Exo 7:18 The fish that are in the river shall die, and the river shall become foul; and the Egyptians shall loathe to drink water from the river." ' "
Exo 7:19 Yahweh said to Moses, "Tell Aaron, 'Take your rod, and stretch out your hand over the waters of Egypt, over their rivers, over their streams, and over their pools, and over all their ponds of water, that they may become blood; and there shall be blood throughout all the land of Egypt, both in vessels of wood and in vessels of stone.' "
Exo 7:20 Moses and Aaron did so, as Yahweh commanded; and he lifted up the rod, and struck the waters that were in the river, in the sight of Pharaoh, and in the sight of his servants; and all the waters that were in the river were turned to blood.
Exo 7:21 The fish that were in the river died; and the river became foul, and the Egyptians couldn't drink water from the river; and the blood was throughout all the land of Egypt.
Exo 7:22 The magicians of Egypt did in like manner with their enchantments; and Pharaoh's heart was hardened, and he didn't listen to them; as Yahweh had spoken.
Exo 7:23 Pharaoh turned and went into his house, neither did he lay even this to heart.
Exo 7:24 All the Egyptians dug around the river for water to drink; for they couldn't drink of the water of the river.
Exo 7:25 Seven days were fulfilled, after Yahweh had struck the river.

Feb. 26, 27 Mark 1

Feb. 26, 27
Mark 1

Mar 1:1 The beginning of the Good News of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.
Mar 1:2 As it is written in the prophets, "Behold, I send my messenger before your face, who will prepare your way before you.
Mar 1:3 The voice of one crying in the wilderness, 'Make ready the way of the Lord! Make his paths straight!' "
Mar 1:4 John came baptizing in the wilderness and preaching the baptism of repentance for forgiveness of sins.
Mar 1:5 All the country of Judea and all those of Jerusalem went out to him. They were baptized by him in the Jordan river, confessing their sins.
Mar 1:6 John was clothed with camel's hair and a leather belt around his waist. He ate locusts and wild honey.
Mar 1:7 He preached, saying, "After me comes he who is mightier than I, the thong of whose sandals I am not worthy to stoop down and loosen.
Mar 1:8 I baptized you in water, but he will baptize you in the Holy Spirit."
Mar 1:9 It happened in those days, that Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee, and was baptized by John in the Jordan.
Mar 1:10 Immediately coming up from the water, he saw the heavens parting, and the Spirit descending on him like a dove.
Mar 1:11 A voice came out of the sky, "You are my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased."
Mar 1:12 Immediately the Spirit drove him out into the wilderness.
Mar 1:13 He was there in the wilderness forty days tempted by Satan. He was with the wild animals; and the angels were serving him.
Mar 1:14 Now after John was taken into custody, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the Good News of the Kingdom of God,
Mar 1:15 and saying, "The time is fulfilled, and the Kingdom of God is at hand! Repent, and believe in the Good News."
Mar 1:16 Passing along by the sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and Andrew the brother of Simon casting a net into the sea, for they were fishermen.
Mar 1:17 Jesus said to them, "Come after me, and I will make you into fishers for men."
Mar 1:18 Immediately they left their nets, and followed him.
Mar 1:19 Going on a little further from there, he saw James the son of Zebedee, and John, his brother, who were also in the boat mending the nets.
Mar 1:20 Immediately he called them, and they left their father, Zebedee, in the boat with the hired servants, and went after him.
Mar 1:21 They went into Capernaum, and immediately on the Sabbath day he entered into the synagogue and taught.
Mar 1:22 They were astonished at his teaching, for he taught them as having authority, and not as the scribes.
Mar 1:23 Immediately there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit, and he cried out,
Mar 1:24 saying, "Ha! What do we have to do with you, Jesus, you Nazarene? Have you come to destroy us? I know you who you are: the Holy One of God!"
Mar 1:25 Jesus rebuked him, saying, "Be quiet, and come out of him!"
Mar 1:26 The unclean spirit, convulsing him and crying with a loud voice, came out of him.
Mar 1:27 They were all amazed, so that they questioned among themselves, saying, "What is this? A new teaching? For with authority he commands even the unclean spirits, and they obey him!"
Mar 1:28 The report of him went out immediately everywhere into all the region of Galilee and its surrounding area.
Mar 1:29 Immediately, when they had come out of the synagogue, they came into the house of Simon and Andrew, with James and John.
Mar 1:30 Now Simon's wife's mother lay sick with a fever, and immediately they told him about her.
Mar 1:31 He came and took her by the hand, and raised her up. The fever left her, and she served them.
Mar 1:32 At evening, when the sun had set, they brought to him all who were sick, and those who were possessed by demons.
Mar 1:33 All the city was gathered together at the door.
Mar 1:34 He healed many who were sick with various diseases, and cast out many demons. He didn't allow the demons to speak, because they knew him.
Mar 1:35 Early in the morning, while it was still dark, he rose up and went out, and departed into a deserted place, and prayed there.
Mar 1:36 Simon and those who were with him followed after him;
Mar 1:37 and they found him, and told him, "Everyone is looking for you."
Mar 1:38 He said to them, "Let's go elsewhere into the next towns, that I may preach there also, because I came out for this reason."
Mar 1:39 He went into their synagogues throughout all Galilee, preaching and casting out demons.
Mar 1:40 A leper came to him, begging him, kneeling down to him, and saying to him, "If you want to, you can make me clean."
Mar 1:41 Being moved with compassion, he stretched out his hand, and touched him, and said to him, "I want to. Be made clean."
Mar 1:42 When he had said this, immediately the leprosy departed from him, and he was made clean.
Mar 1:43 He strictly warned him, and immediately sent him out,
Mar 1:44 and said to him, "See you say nothing to anybody, but go show yourself to the priest, and offer for your cleansing the things which Moses commanded, for a testimony to them."
Mar 1:45 But he went out, and began to proclaim it much, and to spread about the matter, so that Jesus could no more openly enter into a city, but was outside in desert places: and they came to him from everywhere.

"THE BOOK OF PSALMS" Psalm 2 - The Ultimate Victory Of The Messiah by Mark Copeland


             Psalm 2 - The Ultimate Victory Of The Messiah


1) To note the Messianic nature of this psalm

2) To consider its fulfillment as expounded by Jesus and His apostles 
   in the New Testament

3) To take comfort in knowing that the Messiah has ultimate control 
   over world affairs


This psalm is Messianic in nature, with its theme being "The Ultimate
Victory Of The Lord's Anointed."  It is quoted by the apostles and
early church in their prayer for help against persecution (cf. Ac 4:24-
30), in which they applied it to the efforts of Pontius Pilate along
with Gentiles and those of Israel who crucified Christ.  From this
reference in Acts we also learn that David was the author.

The psalm is divided into four sections (or strophes), in each of which
there is a different voice that speaks.  The first strophe begins with
the psalmist observing the efforts of the nations and their leaders to
resist the Lord and His Anointed.  They declare their desire to break
away from the cords that bind them (1-3).  The second strophe depicts
the Lord in heaven as laughing in derision over their futile efforts.
In righteous anger He declares that despite their resistance He has
installed His King (i.e., His Anointed One) on Zion, His holy hill (4-

In the third stanza or strophe, the Anointed One speaks, in which He
declares the decree of the Lord.  He is God's begotten Son, who upon
request is given the nations and ends of the earth as an inheritance
which He will rule with a rod of iron (7-9).  From Jesus and His
apostles, we learn that this rule began when He ascended to heaven and
sat down at the right hand of God (cf. Mt 28:18; Ep 1:20-22; 1Pe 3:22;
Re 1:5; 2:26-27).

The psalm ends with the fourth strophe containing the psalmist's
counsel of what the leaders of the nations should do:  Worship the Lord
with reverence, and do homage to the Son lest they incur His righteous
anger.  For all who put their trust in the Anointed One, they shall be
blessed (10-12).  



      1. Why do the nations rage?
      2. Why do the people plot a vain thing?

      1. Against the Lord and His Anointed...
         a. The kings of the earth set themselves
         b. The rulers take counsel together
      2. Against the Lord and His Anointed they say...
         a. "Let us break Their bonds in pieces"
         b. "(Let us) cast away Their cords from us"


      1. He who sits in the heaven shall laugh
      2. The Lord shall hold them in deep derision

   B. THE LORD'S REPLY (5-6)
      1. He shall speak to them in His wrath
      2. He will distress them in His deep displeasure
      3. He will proclaim:  "Yet I have set My King on My holy hill Of 


      1. "You are My Son"
      2. "Today I have begotten You"

      1. The extent of His rule
         a. "The nations for Your inheritance"
         b. "The ends of the earth for Your possession"
      2. The power of His rule
         a. "You shall break them with a rod of iron"
         b. "You shall dash them to pieces like a potter's vessel"


      1. Be wise, be instructed
      2. Serve the LORD with fear
      3. Rejoice with trembling

   B. TO THEM AND ALL (12)
      1. Kiss the Son lest He be angry
         a. And you perish [in] the way
         b. When His wrath is kindled but a little.
      2. Blessed are all those who put their trust in Him. 


1) What are the main points of this psalm?
   - The nations' resistance (1-3)
   - The Lord's rejoinder (4-6)
   - The Messiah's response (7-9)
   - The psalmist's reproach (10-12)

2) Against whom are the kings and rulers taking counsel? (2)
   - The Lord and His Anointed

3) What are the kings and rulers saying? (3)
   - Let us break Their bonds in pieces, and cast away Their cords

4) What reaction does this prompt from the Lord in heaven? (4-5)
   - Laughter and derision
   - Wrath and displeasure

5) What will the Lord say to these kings and rulers? (6)
   - I have set My King on My holy hill of Zion

6) How will the Anointed One (i.e., the Messiah) respond? (7)
   - He will declare the decree spoken to Him by the Lord (God)

7) Who is the Anointed One? (7)
   - God's begotten Son

8) As applied by Paul, what "day" was the Messiah "begotten" by God? 
   (7; cf. Ac 13:33)
   - The day of His resurrection from the dead

9) What did the Lord promise His Anointed One? (8)
   - The nations and ends of the earth for His inheritance and 

10) According to Jesus and His apostles, has He been given this 
    authority?  If so, when?  (cf. Mt 28:18; Ep 1:20-22; 1Pe 3:22;
    Re 1:5; 2:26-27)
   - Yes; when He ascended to heaven and set down at the right hand of 

11) What will He do to the nations with this authority? (9; cf. Re 2:
   - Break them with a rod of iron
   - Dash them in pieces like a potter's vessel

12) What wisdom and instruction does the psalmist give to kings and
    judges? (10-12)
   - Serve the Lord with fear
   - Rejoice with trembling
   - Kiss (do homage to) the Son
   - Lest He be angry and you perish when His wrath is kindled

13) What of those who put their trust in the Son? (12)
   - They will be blessed