What Does The Lord Require?

What Does The Lord Require?

Micah 6:6-8

“With what shall I come before the Lord,
    and bow myself before God on high?
Shall I come before him with burnt offerings,
    with calves a year old?
 Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams,
    with ten thousands of rivers of oil?
Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression,
    the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?”
He has told you, O man, what is good;
    and what does the Lord require of you
but to do justice, and to love kindness,
    and to walk humbly with your God?

I made a note about these three verses but I wasn’t sure what I wanted to write.  Now, as I read them and begin to write this piece, I realize just how simple a message it is, yet so eloquently stated.

In the English Standard Version of the Bible, these verses are titled, “What Does the Lord Require?” Continue reading

Tear Your Heart

Tear Your Heart

Joel 2:13

and rend your hearts and not your garments.”
Return to the Lord your God,
    for he is gracious and merciful,
slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love;
    and he relents over disaster.

“….and rend your hearts and not your garments.”

That was the line that caught my attention, so I made a note to write about it.  I was familiar with the word render, which means in the verb form: “to provide or give”, but rend, was throwing me a bit of a curve.  I thought it had to do with tearing since, “rend your heart” was followed by “and not your garments”.  I took the time to look up the definition just to be sure.  And that is what it means, to tear into two or more pieces. Continue reading

Stands On Its Own – Part II

Stands On Its Own – Part II

Ezekiel 33:10-12

“And you, son of man, say to the house of Israel, Thus have you said: ‘Surely our transgressions and our sins are upon us, and we rot away because of them. How then can we live?’ 11 Say to them, As I live, declares the Lord God, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way and live; turn back, turn back from your evil ways, for why will you die, O house of Israel?

“And you, son of man, say to your people, The righteousness of the righteous shall not deliver him when he transgresses, and as for the wickedness of the wicked, he shall not fall by it when he turns from his wickedness, and the righteous shall not be able to live by his righteousness when he sins.

These verses help solidify my belief that the Bible is a manual for the individual. In my previous post, Stand On Its Own, I wrote about these verses, but today I wanted to write some more as I feel strongly about the individual.   Verses like these speak of the individual and how the individual is responsible for their actions.  Although each day circumstances beyond our control are thrown at us, how we respond to those circumstances is what we can control.  Our response is what makes us who we are. Continue reading

The Bible Antiquated?

The Bible Antiquated?

People will tell you that the Bible is antiquated.

What does antiquated mean?

“Very old and no longer useful, popular or accepted: very old fashion, obsolete”

Or how about this definition:

“Outmoded or discredited by reason of age; being out of style of fashion”

Many people do consider the Bible to be very old, no longer popular or accepted.  Many consider it to be out of style and out of fashion.

But to say it is no longer useful or to discredit it by reason of age is foolish.

The Bible is not antiquated. Continue reading

Simple Manual

Simple Manual

Ezekiel 20:11-12

I gave them my statutes and made known to them my rules, by which, if a person does them, he shall live.  Moreover, I gave them my Sabbaths, as a sign between me and them, that they might know that I am the Lord who sanctifies them.

Ezekiel Chapter 20 begins with the elders of Israel coming to the prophet Ezekiel to inquire of the Lord.  It’s doesn’t tells us their question but I’m reasonably sure it’s that age old question we all ask when things go bad, “God, why did you let this happen?”

If you read the entire chapter you will learn that God, through Ezekiel, lets the elders of Israel know exactly why they have been carried off to Babylon.  God has Ezekiel give a full accounting of the history and of the relationship between God and the Israelites, and their constant rebellion against God.

Ezekiel advises the elders that they are suffering the consequences of their actions. Continue reading

Humble Yourself, Listen and Learn

Humble Yourself, Listen and Learn

I have written about how the book of Proverbs is one of my favorite books if not my favorite book of the Bible.

Proverbs 1:7 – The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, fool despise wisdom and instruction.

Proverbs 3:7 – Be not wise in your own eyes, fear the Lord and turn away from evil.

I wrote down these two verses because they speak about something I feel strongly about, humility.

There is wisdom in the poetry of King Solomon that is unsurpassed in all works through the ages.

It doesn’t matter if you do or don’t believe in God, there is no denying the wisdom and life lessons in this book.  To pass it off as some mythical comic book hokum is foolishness and fits right into these two verses. Continue reading

Express Yourself

Express Yourself

Jeremiah 31:4

Again I will build you, and you shall be built,
    O virgin Israel!
Again you shall adorn yourself with tambourines
    and shall go forth in the dance of the merrymakers.

Jeremiah 31:12-13

They shall come and sing aloud on the height of Zion,
    and they shall be radiant over the goodness of the Lord,
over the grain, the wine, and the oil,
    and over the young of the flock and the herd;
their life shall be like a watered garden,
    and they shall languish no more.
 Then shall the young women rejoice in the dance,
    and the young men and the old shall be merry.
I will turn their mourning into joy;
    I will comfort them, and give them gladness for sorrow.

This post isn’t very long.  All I want to do is site some more examples of how making and listening to music is referenced in the Bible for expressing emotions, mainly joy and celebration. Continue reading