Silent Dogs

Silent Dogs

Isaiah 56:9-12

All you beasts of the field, come to devour—
    all you beasts in the forest.
His watchmen are blind;
    they are all without knowledge;
they are all silent dogs;
    they cannot bark,
dreaming, lying down,
    loving to slumber.
The dogs have a mighty appetite;
    they never have enough.
But they are shepherds who have no understanding;
    they have all turned to their own way,
    each to his own gain, one and all.
“Come,” they say, “let me get wine;
    let us fill ourselves with strong drink;
and tomorrow will be like this day,
    great beyond measure.”

The heading of these verses in the English Standard Version of the Bible is “Israel’s Irresponsible Leaders”.

Isaiah is speaking to Israel who has stop walking in the way of the Lord.  Isaiah is pointing out that their deviation from God and righteousness is coming from the top down.  He is speaking of leaders who have turned from doing what is right for the people and are only doing what is best for the leaders’ own benefit.  And of course if you have read some of my previous posts you will know that I see this ancient commentary on society as being as relevant today as it was thousands of years ago. Continue reading

Expectations of False Gods

Expectations of False Gods

Isaiah 51:7-8

On a high and lofty mountain
    you have set your bed,
    and there you went up to offer sacrifice.
Behind the door and the doorpost
    you have set up your memorial;
for, deserting me, you have uncovered your bed,
    you have gone up to it,
    you have made it wide;
and you have made a covenant for yourself with them,
    you have loved their bed,
    you have looked on nakedness.

Isaiah starts Chapter 51 of his book with this verse:

Listen to me, you who pursue righteousness, you who seek the Lord….

Isaiah prophesied about the pending destruction of Judah and the Jews being carried off into captivity by the king of Babylon.  Those captured and enslaved will be the lucky ones, the others are set to be destroyed by pestilence, famine and the sword. Continue reading

Music Has Charm

Music Has Charm

As I was reading through 1 Samuel I came across more examples of how music is truly a wonderful gift from God.  These verses demonstrate the power of moving air in waves at various frequencies to produce a healing and enlightening power.  These are the things they never teach about music in school.

1 Samuel 10:4-6

And they will greet you and give you two loaves of bread, which you shall accept from their hand.  After that you shall come to Gibeath-elohim, where there is a garrison of the Philistines. And there, as soon as you come to the city, you will meet a group of prophets coming down from the high place with harp, tambourine, flute, and lyre before them, prophesying. Then the Spirit of the Lord will rush upon you, and you will prophesy with them and be turned into another man.

Samuel, the last Judge of Israel, is explaining to Saul what will happen as he is to become the first king of Israel. Continue reading

Return The Fruits

Return The Fruits

Jeremiah 31:16

Thus says the Lord:
“Keep your voice from weeping,
    and your eyes from tears,
for there is a reward for your work,
declares the Lord,
    and they shall come back from the land of the enemy.

If you were to read the verse that precedes Jeremiah 31:16 you would know that verse sixteen is God speaking about Rachel, whom I guess you could say is the matriarch of the Israelites.  Rachel was one of Jacob’s two wives.  Jacob became Israel,  who was the patriarch of the Israelites.  Rachel had trouble bearing children, but eventually was able to conceive and bear Joseph and Benjamin, two of the twelve that make up the tribes of Israel.

In verse fifteen, Rachel is said to be weeping for her children.  These verses were written hundreds of years after Rachel’s death, so they are referring to the descendants of Jacob that were now being plundered and taken into captivity. Continue reading

Text Book For The Future

Text Book For The Future

Joel 1: 2-3

Hear this, you elders;
    give ear, all inhabitants of the land!
Has such a thing happened in your days,
    or in the days of your fathers?
Tell your children of it,
    and let your children tell their children,
    and their children to another generation.

The English Standard Version Bible titles Chapter 1 of the Book of Joel as,  “An Invasion of Locust”.   Joel is referring to the outside invaders of Jerusalem, who will plunder and carry off the nation of Israel to Babylon.  Joel poetically describes the destruction of a once great and powerful nation and its reduction to rubble.  He begins his lament with a warning to the elders of Israel, advising them to be sure they record this disaster and share it with future generations.  It’s basically the old adage, those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it. Continue reading

Ahab’s Retort

Ahab’s Retort

1 Kings 20:11

And the king of Israel answered, “Tell him, ‘Let not him who straps on his armor boast himself as he who takes it off.’”

When I read this verse I knew I liked it but it took me a couple of times it to understand the simple message that King Ahab, the king of Israel, was conveying to King Ben-Hadad, the king of Syria.

King Ben-Hadad had gathered all his forces together, which included the armies of thirty two other kings.  That must have been a substantial military force.  For some reason Ben-Hadad wanted to conquer Samaria which was part of Israel and part of King Ahab’s domain.  Ben-Hadad massed all his forces around Samaria and was ready to attack. Continue reading

Finding Your Promised Land

Finding Your Promised Land

Deuteronomy 12:5-7

But you shall seek the place that the Lord your God will choose out of all your tribes to put his name and make his habitation there. There you shall go, and there you shall bring your burnt offerings and your sacrifices, your tithes and the contribution that you present, your vow offerings, your freewill offerings, and the firstborn of your herd and of your flock. And there you shall eat before the Lord your God, and you shall rejoice, you and your households, in all that you undertake, in which the Lord your God has blessed you.

Moses is addressing the tribes of Israel as they are about to cross over the river Jordan and begin their trek into the promised land.  Moses is instructing them to be aware and be attentive to the guidance of the Lord in finding their spot to settle and worship God.

The first verse of these verses is what intrigued me the most: But you shall seek the place that the Lord your God will choose… Continue reading