Am I Bob, or is this central Florida?

Sometimes we say or do things that are foolish.  Even worse, we may not even REALIZE our foolishness.  If we are involved in something like excessive alcohol consumption and become truly ADDICTED, we may not be willing or able to recognize that our actions are destructive and want EVERYONE to do what we do.  And so we come to an interesting passage from the book of
1 Peter...

1 Peter, Chapter 4
 1 Forasmuch then as Christ suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves also with the same mind; for he who has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin;  2 that you no longer should live the rest of your time in the flesh for the lusts of men, but for the will of God. 3 For we have spent enough of our past time doing the desire of the Gentiles, and having walked in lewdness, lusts, drunken binges, orgies, carousings, and abominable idolatries.  4 They think it is strange that you don’t run with them into the same excess of riot, blaspheming: 5 who will give account to him who is ready to judge the living and the dead.

For a snowman, Florida is a one-way ticket.  Sin is as well; for it will eventually lead to complete destruction of your life, both in this world and the next.  Take a moment to objectively reflect on how you live and if you don't like what you see... change!  As long as there is life... there is hope!!!  Even if you have a carrot for a nose!!!

Aug. 12 Nehemiah 12, 13

Aug. 12
Nehemiah 12, 13

Neh 12:1 Now these are the priests and the Levites who went up with Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, and Jeshua: Seraiah, Jeremiah, Ezra,
Neh 12:2 Amariah, Malluch, Hattush,
Neh 12:3 Shecaniah, Rehum, Meremoth,
Neh 12:4 Iddo, Ginnethoi, Abijah,
Neh 12:5 Mijamin, Maadiah, Bilgah,
Neh 12:6 Shemaiah, and Joiarib, Jedaiah.
Neh 12:7 Sallu, Amok, Hilkiah, Jedaiah. These were the chiefs of the priests and of their brothers in the days of Jeshua.
Neh 12:8 Moreover the Levites: Jeshua, Binnui, Kadmiel, Sherebiah, Judah, and Mattaniah, who was over the thanksgiving, he and his brothers.
Neh 12:9 Also Bakbukiah and Unno, their brothers, were over against them according to their offices.
Neh 12:10 Jeshua became the father of Joiakim, and Joiakim became the father of Eliashib, and Eliashib became the father of Joiada,
Neh 12:11 and Joiada became the father of Jonathan, and Jonathan became the father of Jaddua.
Neh 12:12 In the days of Joiakim were priests, heads of fathers' houses: of Seraiah, Meraiah; of Jeremiah, Hananiah;
Neh 12:13 of Ezra, Meshullam; of Amariah, Jehohanan;
Neh 12:14 of Malluchi, Jonathan; of Shebaniah, Joseph;
Neh 12:15 of Harim, Adna; of Meraioth, Helkai;
Neh 12:16 of Iddo, Zechariah; of Ginnethon, Meshullam;
Neh 12:17 of Abijah, Zichri; of Miniamin, of Moadiah, Piltai;
Neh 12:18 of Bilgah, Shammua; of Shemaiah, Jehonathan;
Neh 12:19 and of Joiarib, Mattenai; of Jedaiah, Uzzi;
Neh 12:20 of Sallai, Kallai; of Amok, Eber;
Neh 12:21 of Hilkiah, Hashabiah; of Jedaiah, Nethanel.
Neh 12:22 As for the Levites, in the days of Eliashib, Joiada, and Johanan, and Jaddua, there were recorded the heads of fathers' houses; also the priests, in the reign of Darius the Persian.
Neh 12:23 The sons of Levi, heads of fathers' houses, were written in the book of the chronicles, even until the days of Johanan the son of Eliashib.
Neh 12:24 The chiefs of the Levites: Hashabiah, Sherebiah, and Jeshua the son of Kadmiel, with their brothers over against them, to praise and give thanks, according to the commandment of David the man of God, watch next to watch.
Neh 12:25 Mattaniah, and Bakbukiah, Obadiah, Meshullam, Talmon, Akkub, were porters keeping the watch at the storehouses of the gates.
Neh 12:26 These were in the days of Joiakim the son of Jeshua, the son of Jozadak, and in the days of Nehemiah the governor, and of Ezra the priest the scribe.
Neh 12:27 At the dedication of the wall of Jerusalem they sought the Levites out of all their places, to bring them to Jerusalem, to keep the dedication with gladness, both with giving thanks, and with singing, with cymbals, stringed instruments, and with harps.
Neh 12:28 The sons of the singers gathered themselves together, both out of the plain around Jerusalem, and from the villages of the Netophathites;
Neh 12:29 also from Beth Gilgal, and out of the fields of Geba and Azmaveth: for the singers had built them villages around Jerusalem.
Neh 12:30 The priests and the Levites purified themselves; and they purified the people, and the gates, and the wall.
Neh 12:31 Then I brought up the princes of Judah on the wall, and appointed two great companies who gave thanks and went in procession. One went on the right hand on the wall toward the dung gate;
Neh 12:32 and after them went Hoshaiah, and half of the princes of Judah,
Neh 12:33 and Azariah, Ezra, and Meshullam,
Neh 12:34 Judah, and Benjamin, and Shemaiah, and Jeremiah,
Neh 12:35 and certain of the priests' sons with trumpets: Zechariah the son of Jonathan, the son of Shemaiah, the son of Mattaniah, the son of Micaiah, the son of Zaccur, the son of Asaph;
Neh 12:36 and his brothers, Shemaiah, and Azarel, Milalai, Gilalai, Maai, Nethanel, and Judah, Hanani, with the musical instruments of David the man of God; and Ezra the scribe was before them.
Neh 12:37 By the spring gate, and straight before them, they went up by the stairs of the city of David, at the ascent of the wall, above the house of David, even to the water gate eastward.
Neh 12:38 The other company of those who gave thanks went to meet them, and I after them, with the half of the people, on the wall, above the tower of the furnaces, even to the broad wall,
Neh 12:39 and above the gate of Ephraim, and by the old gate, and by the fish gate, and the tower of Hananel, and the tower of Hammeah, even to the sheep gate: and they stood still in the gate of the guard.
Neh 12:40 So stood the two companies of those who gave thanks in the house of God, and I, and the half of the rulers with me;
Neh 12:41 and the priests, Eliakim, Maaseiah, Miniamin, Micaiah, Elioenai, Zechariah, and Hananiah, with trumpets;
Neh 12:42 and Maaseiah, and Shemaiah, and Eleazar, and Uzzi, and Jehohanan, and Malchijah, and Elam, and Ezer. The singers sang loud, with Jezrahiah their overseer.
Neh 12:43 They offered great sacrifices that day, and rejoiced; for God had made them rejoice with great joy; and the women also and the children rejoiced: so that the joy of Jerusalem was heard even afar off.
Neh 12:44 On that day were men appointed over the chambers for the treasures, for the wave offerings, for the first fruits, and for the tithes, to gather into them, according to the fields of the cities, the portions appointed by the law for the priests and Levites: for Judah rejoiced for the priests and for the Levites who waited.
Neh 12:45 They performed the duty of their God, and the duty of the purification, and so did the singers and the porters, according to the commandment of David, and of Solomon his son.
Neh 12:46 For in the days of David and Asaph of old there was a chief of the singers, and songs of praise and thanksgiving to God.
Neh 12:47 All Israel in the days of Zerubbabel, and in the days of Nehemiah, gave the portions of the singers and the porters, as every day required: and they set apart that which was for the Levites; and the Levites set apart that which was for the sons of Aaron.
Neh 13:1 On that day they read in the book of Moses in the audience of the people; and therein was found written, that an Ammonite and a Moabite should not enter into the assembly of God forever,
Neh 13:2 because they didn't meet the children of Israel with bread and with water, but hired Balaam against them, to curse them: however our God turned the curse into a blessing.
Neh 13:3 It came to pass, when they had heard the law, that they separated from Israel all the mixed multitude.
Neh 13:4 Now before this, Eliashib the priest, who was appointed over the chambers of the house of our God, being allied to Tobiah,
Neh 13:5 had prepared for him a great chamber, where before they laid the meal offerings, the frankincense, and the vessels, and the tithes of the grain, the new wine, and the oil, which were given by commandment to the Levites, and the singers, and the porters; and the wave offerings for the priests.
Neh 13:6 But in all this time I was not at Jerusalem; for in the two and thirtieth year of Artaxerxes king of Babylon I went to the king: and after certain days asked I leave of the king,
Neh 13:7 and I came to Jerusalem, and understood the evil that Eliashib had done for Tobiah, in preparing him a chamber in the courts of the house of God.
Neh 13:8 It grieved me sore: therefore I cast forth all the household stuff of Tobiah out of the chamber.
Neh 13:9 Then I commanded, and they cleansed the chambers: and there brought I again the vessels of the house of God, with the meal offerings and the frankincense.
Neh 13:10 I perceived that the portions of the Levites had not been given them; so that the Levites and the singers, who did the work, had fled everyone to his field.
Neh 13:11 Then contended I with the rulers, and said, Why is the house of God forsaken? I gathered them together, and set them in their place.
Neh 13:12 Then brought all Judah the tithe of the grain and the new wine and the oil to the treasuries.
Neh 13:13 I made treasurers over the treasuries, Shelemiah the priest, and Zadok the scribe, and of the Levites, Pedaiah: and next to them was Hanan the son of Zaccur, the son of Mattaniah; for they were counted faithful, and their business was to distribute to their brothers.
Neh 13:14 Remember me, my God, concerning this, and don't wipe out my good deeds that I have done for the house of my God, and for its observances.
Neh 13:15 In those days saw I in Judah some men treading winepresses on the Sabbath, and bringing in sheaves, and loading donkeys therewith; as also wine, grapes, and figs, and all manner of burdens, which they brought into Jerusalem on the Sabbath day: and I testified against them in the day in which they sold food.
Neh 13:16 There lived men of Tyre also therein, who brought in fish, and all manner of wares, and sold on the Sabbath to the children of Judah, and in Jerusalem.
Neh 13:17 Then I contended with the nobles of Judah, and said to them, What evil thing is this that you do, and profane the Sabbath day?
Neh 13:18 Didn't your fathers do thus, and did not our God bring all this evil on us, and on this city? yet you bring more wrath on Israel by profaning the Sabbath.
Neh 13:19 It came to pass that, when the gates of Jerusalem began to be dark before the Sabbath, I commanded that the doors should be shut, and commanded that they should not be opened until after the Sabbath. I set some of my servants over the gates, that no burden should be brought in on the Sabbath day.
Neh 13:20 So the merchants and sellers of all kinds of wares lodged outside of Jerusalem once or twice.
Neh 13:21 Then I testified against them, and said to them, Why do you stay around the wall? if you do so again, I will lay hands on you. From that time forth came they no more on the Sabbath.
Neh 13:22 I commanded the Levites that they should purify themselves, and that they should come and keep the gates, to sanctify the Sabbath day. Remember to me, my God, this also, and spare me according to the greatness of your loving kindness.
Neh 13:23 In those days also saw I the Jews who had married women of Ashdod, of Ammon, and of Moab:
Neh 13:24 and their children spoke half in the speech of Ashdod, and could not speak in the Jews' language, but according to the language of each people.
Neh 13:25 I contended with them, and cursed them, and struck certain of them, and plucked off their hair, and made them swear by God, saying, You shall not give your daughters to their sons, nor take their daughters for your sons, or for yourselves.
Neh 13:26 Did not Solomon king of Israel sin by these things? yet among many nations was there no king like him, and he was beloved of his God, and God made him king over all Israel: nevertheless even him did foreign women cause to sin.
Neh 13:27 Shall we then listen to you to do all this great evil, to trespass against our God in marrying foreign women?
Neh 13:28 One of the sons of Joiada, the son of Eliashib the high priest, was son-in-law to Sanballat the Horonite: therefore I chased him from me.
Neh 13:29 Remember them, my God, because they have defiled the priesthood, and the covenant of the priesthood, and of the Levites.
Neh 13:30 Thus cleansed I them from all foreigners, and appointed duties for the priests and for the Levites, everyone in his work;
Neh 13:31 and for the wood offering, at times appointed, and for the first fruits. Remember me, my God, for good.

"THE EPISTLE TO THE EPHESIANS" Chapter Three by Mark Copeland

                     "THE EPISTLE TO THE EPHESIANS"

                             Chapter Three


1) To understand the "mystery" so long hidden that is now revealed, and
   the role of the church

2) To examine Paul's prayer for the Ephesians' enablement, what it 
   means for us today


In this chapter Paul reminds his readers of God's grace that has been
shown him regarding the revelation of the "mystery".  By reading what
he had written earlier, they would understand how the "mystery"
pertained to Gentiles becoming fellow heirs in Christ, and Paul felt
privileged to preach among the Gentiles what for ages had been hidden.
Knowing that what he did was part of God's eternal purpose in Christ to
make His manifold wisdom known by the church, he asked his brethren not
to be discouraged by any tribulations he experienced on their behalf 

The chapter also contains Paul's second prayer for the Ephesians.  He 
prays for their enablement, that the Father would strengthen them by 
His Spirit, that Christ might dwell in their hearts through faith, that
they be able to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge, and so 
be filled with all the fullness of God.  He concludes his prayer and 
this chapter by ascribing that glory be given to God in the church by 
Jesus Christ for all eternity (14-21).



      1. Interrupting himself, Paul makes mention of God's grace (1-2)
         a. A measure of grace given to him
         b. Given for the benefit of his readers
      2. That by revelation God made known to Paul the "mystery" (3-4)
         a. Concerning which he wrote previously
         b. Which as they read, they will understand his knowledge in
            the mystery of Christ
      3. A "mystery" once hidden, but now revealed (5)
         a. In other ages it was not made known to men
         b. But has now been revealed
            1) By the Spirit
            2) To God's holy apostles and prophets
      4. The "mystery" involved the Gentiles (6)
         a. That they should be fellow heirs, of the same body
         b. That they should be partakers of God's promise through the
      5. Paul's role as a minister of this "mystery" was a gift from
         God (7)
         a. A gift of God's grace
         b. A gift given to him by the effective working of God's power

      1. To preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ
         a. Even though he was "less than the least of all the saints"
         b. Yet this grace was given to him
      2. To make all see what is the fellowship of the mystery (9-13)
         a. Which from the beginning was hidden in God who created all
         b. But with the intention of now making God's wisdom known
            1) Made known by the church
            2) Made known to principalities and powers in heavenly
         c. According to God's eternal purpose which He fulfilled in
            Christ Jesus
            1) In whom we have boldness and confident access through
               faith in Him
            2) For which Paul does not want them to lose heart over his
               tribulations in their behalf, which was for their glory


   A. HIS INVOCATION (14-15)
      1. In view of God's grace to the Gentiles, Paul bows his knees in
         prayer (14a)
      2. He addresses the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, from whom
         the whole family in heaven and earth is named (14b-15)

   B. HIS PETITION (16-19)
      1. That they would be strengthened by the Spirit of God (16-17)
         a. According to the riches of His glory
         b. With might through His Spirit in the inner man
         c. So Christ may dwell in their hearts through faith
      2. That they might comprehend the love of Christ (18-19a)
         a. Being rooted and grounded in love
         b. To know the love of Christ which passes knowledge
      3. That they might be filled with all the fullness of God (19b)

   C. HIS DOXOLOGY (20-21)
      1. Glory to God, for what He is able to do! (20)
         a. Able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or
         b. According to the power that works in us
      2. Glory to God, in the church! (21)
         a. By Christ Jesus
         b. Throughout all ages, world without end


1) What are the main points of this chapter?
   - The revelation of the mystery (1-13)
   - Paul's second prayer:  for their enablement (14-21)

2) How does Paul identify himself as he begins this chapter? (1)
   - As the prisoner of Jesus Christ for the Gentiles

3) What dispensation, or measure, of grace was shown by God toward
   Paul? (2-3)
   - That by revelation God made known to him the "mystery"

4) What did Paul say we can have by reading what he had written? (3-4)
   - We can understand his knowledge in the mystery of Christ

5) What does Paul reveal concerning the revelation of this mystery? (5)
   - In other ages it was not made known, but has now been revealed by
     the Spirit to His holy apostles and prophets

6) What is the "mystery" that has now been revealed? (6)
   - That Gentiles should be fellow heirs, of the same body, and
     partakers of His promise through the gospel

7) Though viewing himself as "less than the least of all the saints",
   what gracious task was given to Paul? (8-9)
   - To preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ
   - To make all see with is the fellowship of the mystery which was
     hidden from the beginning

8) What was the intent for proclaiming the revelation of this mystery?
   - That the manifold wisdom of God might be made known by the church
     to principalities and powers in the heavenly places

9) According to what was all this being done? (11)
   - The eternal purpose or plan which God accomplished in Christ Jesus

10) What has Christ therefore made possible for us? (12)
   - Boldness and access to God with confidence through faith in Him

11) In view of God's grace given to Paul, what does he therefore ask?
   - For them not to lose heart over his tribulations on their behalf

12) In Paul's second prayer for the Ephesians, for what does he ask?
   - That they would be strengthened by the Spirit of God
   - That they might comprehend the love of Christ
   - That they might be filled with all the fullness of God

13) What does Paul say God is able to do?  How? (20)
   - Exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think
   - According to the power that works in us

14) In what entity does Paul seek to ascribe glory to God?  How?  For
    how long? (21)
   - In the church
   - By Christ Jesus
   - Throughout all ages, world without end