Chewing the Bread of Life

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Thursday, June 14, 2018

Who Is Jesus? Chapter 4


 


           Who Is Jesus?  Chapter 4

Much of the Old Testament stories were pictures of Christ.  Prior to Moses coming to deliver the Children of Israel from Egypt, he saw a bush that was burning but it did not burn up completely. 
 
As Moses drew closer a voice said, "Take off your shoes for you are standing on holy ground."  Moses was intrigued, and asked who are you and what do you want from me?  The voice told him he was to set the people free and take them to the promised land.  Moses asked, who shall I say is sending me?  What is your name?  God spoke to Moses and said, "I AM THAT I AM.”  And I appeared unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, by the name of God Almighty, but by my name LORD I was not known to them. 

In the New Testament John's gospel, there are seven (7) times Jesus says he is "I AM." 

       1.  I AM The Bread Of Life. Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. He who comes                                     to me shall never  hunger spiritually.

      2  I AM the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but shall                          have the light of life” (John 8:12).

      3. I AM The Door. I am the door; whoever enters through me will be saved.

      4. I AM The Good Shepherd. The shepherd gives his life for his sheep.

      5. I AM the Resurrection and the Life.  Jesus offers us eternal life that begins when we                             invite Him into our life.

      6. I AM the Way, the Truth and the Life.  In John 6:44, He says, “No one can come to Me                        unless the Father who sent Me draws him.” This is how we come to God. The                               Holy Spirit will use an incident in your life to speak to you.

7. I AM the True Vine and you are the branches to bare fruit.

       
 

As the Children of Israel traveled in the desert towards the promised land, God gave them bread from heaven every morning.  The people called it Manna.  Upon rising, they were to find small kernels that fell with the dew.  The taste was like wafers and honey.  It could be ground to make bread and prepared other ways as their main diet.  There was NO manna on the Sabbath, so the day prior they were to gather twice as much.
 

Jesus referred to Himself as the bread from Heaven.

John 6:  Jesus said to them, “I tell you the truth, it is not Moses who has given you the bread from heaven, but it is my Father who gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is he who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world…. This is the bread that came down from heaven.
 
I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live forever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world. 

 

Water Cover Up





In Genesis 26 we read there was a famine in the land of Canaan and so Isaac went to Gerar (in the land of a people called the Philistines). The Lord promised Isaac that if he stayed there instead of traveling to Egypt, God would bless him and his descendants. Isaac obeyed, and God blessed him indeed. Verse 12 states that "Isaac sowed seed in that land and received in the same year one hundred times as much as he planted and the Lord favored him with blessings."

Genesis 26:17-22 (New King James Version)

Then Isaac pitched his tent in the Valley of Gerar, and dwelt there. And Isaac dug again the wells of water which they had dug in the days of Abraham his father, for the Philistines had stopped them up after the death of Abraham. Also Isaac’s servants dug in the valley, and found a well of running water there. But the herdsmen of Gerar quarreled with Isaac’s herdsmen, saying, “The water is ours.”
 
Isaac did not fight when they quarreled with him; he just moved on. Then his servents dug another well, and the Gerar herdsmen quarreled over that one also. So he moved from there and dug another well, and they did not quarrel over it. So he called its name Rehoboth, because he said, “For now the LORD has made room for us, and we shall be fruitful in the land.”  

It's the same with us. At times if we are not getting the breakthrough, it may be a signal that God wants us to make some kind of adjustment in order to triumph. It may not be a physical/geographical move as with Isaac, but it may be a change in thinking or attitude. From Isaac we can also learn that once we make up our minds not to give up, there comes a point when God steps in and gives us rest from troublemakers.

As we continue to pray over out city, it may seem at times, that there are hindrances.  Our hard work of digging to uncover water finds someone else claiming the territory.  Like Isaac, we must not be discouraged, but instead, we will claim a new well and make declarations.   
 
Oh no, Not again, we say, there is another hindrance.  Someone is taking credit for my work, others fuss with me, so shall I let it get me down?  No, it is time to settle for peace.  Fighting will only bring stress and upset to all.  It is good to bless those who persecute you, and to find ways to praise them for their efforts. 
 
Shall we stop praying over our city?  No it is time to keep Moving on and we shall not get discouraged, because discouragement is the enemies main weapon.  We shall make our declarations and prophesy over our city and claim water for all to drink. 

Jesus is the Living water that will satisfy the thirsty souls. 

Nothing really quenches thirst like a cool glass of fresh water.  Our citizens are in need of the Living water that Jesus offers.  Keep praying, working and never give up.

1.                             John 7:37-39 On the last and greatest day of the festival, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, "Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them." By this he meant the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were later to receive. Up to that time the Spirit had not been given, since Jesus had not yet been glorified.

 

Monday, June 11, 2018

Who is Jesus Chapter 3



 

Who is Jesus Chapter 3
 
Today, we will back up a bit and take another look at the Children of Israel while they were captives in Egypt.  Moses was sent by God to set them free, but the Pharaoh would not let the people go, because they were valuable slaves working hard for him.  Moses warned Pharaoh that if he did not allow the people to go, that terrible things would happen. 
 
Pharaoh was not impressed, and paid no attention to Moses, so in tandem there occurred ten plagues: The children of Israel who dwelled in the land of Goshen, were not effected and were kept safe:  (The plagues are listed for background - - the last one is the clinker.)
 
Each time of a plague, Pharaoh said okay, I will let the people go, but when the plague went away, he changed his mind and said, "NO - they stay here."
 
1. Water was turned into blood - Exodus 7:19 And the Lord spoke unto Moses, Say unto Aaron, Take your rod, and stretch out your hand upon the waters of Egypt, upon their streams, upon their rivers, and upon their ponds, and upon all their pools of water, that they may become blood; and that there may be blood throughout all the land of Egypt, both in vessels of wood, and in vessels of stone.
 
2. FROGS everywhere: Exodus 8:3 And the river shall bring forth frogs abundantly, which shall go up and come into your house, and into thy bedchamber, and upon thy bed, and into the house of thy servants, and upon thy people, and into your ovens, and into thy kneading troughs:
 
3. Lice:  Exodus 8:16 And the Lord said unto Moses, Say unto Aaron, Stretch out your rod, and smite the dust of the land, that it may become lice throughout all the land of Egypt.
 
4. Flies: Exodus 8:21 Else, if thou wilt not let my people go, behold, I will send swarms of flies upon thee, and upon thy servants, and upon thy people, and into thy houses: and the houses of the Egyptians shall be full of swarms of flies, and also the ground whereon they are.
 
5.  Livestock diseased: Exodus 9:3 Behold, the hand of the Lord is upon thy cattle which is in the field, upon the horses, upon the asses, upon the camels, upon the oxen, and upon the sheep: there shall be a very grievous murrain.
 
6.  Boils on man and beast: Exodus 9:8, 9 And the Lord said unto Moses and unto Aaron, Take to you handfuls of ashes of the furnace, and let Moses sprinkle it toward the heaven in the sight of Pharaoh. And it shall become small dust in all the land of Egypt, and shall be a boil breaking forth with blains upon man, and upon beast, throughout all the land of Egypt.

7. Thunder and Hail: Exodus 9:18 The seventh plague brought torrential rains, thunder, and hail that killed people, animals, and crops. Despite the fact that Pharaoh admitted his sin, once the storm calmed he again refused freedom to the Hebrews.

8. Locust:  If Pharaoh thought frogs and lice were bad, the locusts of the eighth plague would prove to be the most devastating. These insects ate every green plant they could find. Afterwards, Pharaoh admitted to Moses that he had sinned - -

9. Darkness: Three days of complete darkness stretched over the lands of Egypt—not those of the Hebrews, who enjoyed light by day—in the ninth plague. It was so dark that the Egyptians could not see each other.  After this plague, the Pharaoh attempted to negotiate the freedom of the Hebrews. His bargain that they could leave if their flocks were left behind was not accepted.

The tenth and most terrible plague was now coming:  The Angel of Death was being charged to visit that night and slay all the first born son's in the homes of the Un-Protected. 

Exodus 11:4, 5  And Moses said, Thus says the LORD, About midnight will I go out into the midst of Egypt:  And all the firstborn in the land of Egypt shall die, from the first born of Pharaoh that sits upon his throne, even unto the firstborn of the maidservant that is behind the mill; and all the firstborn of beasts.

God gave Moses detailed instructions for the Children of Israel; How to be protected and it involved a lasting ceremony that is still celebrated today:  "The Passover Feast."

The children of Israel had been in Egypt for 430 years, so you will realize they were now a large crowd of six hundred thousand men, (600,000) not counting children (or women.)  Each household was approximately 12 to 15 persons.  (A LOT of lambs were needed for this happening.)

They were being instructed to select a perfect lamb for each household and to prepare a meal where they were to eat the roasted lamb, and burn anything left over.  They were to be packed up and ready to leave in the morning.

They were to kill the lamb and collect the blood in a clean basin.  To protect each dwelling from the angel of death, they were to use hyssop and dip it into the blood and sprinkle the blood on each door post and on the lentil (top) of the door.  This was important, because when the "Death Angel passed by that night, and saw the blood on the doors, the angel would PASS OVER those homes and not slay the first born male child.

The blood was a picture of Christ Jesus' shed blood that is available to save us from our sins.  Today when we partake of "communion" as Jesus asked us; we remember his broken body and shed blood.

Luke 22:19, 20 And he took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, "This is my body given for you; do this in remembrance of me." In the same way, after the supper he took the cup, saying, "This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you.
 
 
 

Saturday, June 9, 2018

Who is Jesus? Chapter 2




 
 

Who is Jesus?  Chapter 2

God lives in eternity, so with God there is no "time" as we know it.  The Bible says, a thousand years is as a day with God.  From the moment Adam and Eve sinned, God was not in a rush to put His plan of redemption in place.  There was much to do first. 
God was setting His plan in motion, but it would take time to bring it to pass.  

Many of the things God caused to happen were for examples and pictures of a Savior who would become the ultimate sacrifice for the sins of the world.  The prophets often spoke of a Messiah who would become the savior of all mankind. 


From Adam onward there were faithful men who loved God and refused to worship idols and false gods.  One such man named Abraham was promised by God, to make of him a great nation.  As time went by, there was a great famine in the East, and Abraham's children - - Jacob's family went to Egypt to purchase food.  They settled down and raised grain and sheep plus their families quickly multiplied. Eventually a new King of Egypt feared their great number, so he cause them to become his slaves.   


Exodus chapter 32 tells us of Moses being raised up to deliver the people from their bondage and after a chain of events they left Egypt, and God destroyed their Egyptian enemies. 


At God's request Moses climbed up Mount Sinai, to meet God and to receive the 10 commandments and the law.  Most important was the first two commandments, to only worship God, and not make with their hands images or worship false gods, and not to take the Name of the Lord God in vain.   


Sorry to say, it did not take the people very long to break these commandments.  The people worried that Moses was gone too long, and they requested Aaron to fashion a gold calf similar to one of the Egyptian gods and they danced and worshipped it.   


This mutiny caused God to become furious and He told Moses he would destroy the people because they were so rebellious.  Moses plead with God not to do this for what would the other nations think, if God just delivered the people from bondage and then wiped them out?   God changed his mind, but (Exodus 32) The Lord  plagued the people, because they made the calf, which Aaron made. 


God gave Moses explicit and precise instructions for a tent tabernacle and details for  making the sacrifices for the sins of the people.  God demanded a blood sacrifice of an innocent and pure animal to atone for sin.
 
It was necessary for the people to bring a sacrifice many times, as they were habitually sinning. 


All this was again a picture of a future event when only ONE sacrifice would be necessary and that one selected person would voluntarily lay down His life to rescue all who would willingly come to Him and invite Him into their life. 


The prophet Isaiah records:- - 3-7: “He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering. Like one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed. We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all. He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth.”
 

Friday, June 8, 2018

Who is Jesus? Chapter 1


In the Beginning was the Word and the Word was God, and by Him all things consist


Who is Jesus?  Chapter 1

 
Where was Jesus before He became a baby born in the city of Bethlehem to a young Virgin girl named Mary? 

Our Father God is a spirit not seen with visible eyes, and from the beginning, Jesus also was in spirit form.  

Jesus was Spirit not flesh until the Holy Spirit placed the seed containing Jesus into the womb of Mary.  At that precise moment Jesus because human flesh, however his blood was divine and of his Father God. 
 
Scientist tell us the baby's blood is not from the mother but from the father.  This fact reveals that the blood of Jesus was sinless, holy and pure and from God himself.  This fact alone is the reason that the blood that Jesus shed on the cross is able to wash away our sins. 

As we take a quick look at the gospel of John chapter 1 we see "In the beginning was the WORD and the WORD was with God and the Word was God.  As we continue reading we discover that John was speaking of Jesus the WORD and also saying Jesus was God and was working in tandem with the Father creating the world. 

We take a look at the first book in the Bible; Genesis chapter 1, and we view that the Spirit of God hovered over the waters.  Our Father God spoke WORDS and each time a portion of earth was formed.  Light was split from darkness, Waters were divided from the sky, the sun, moon and stars came into being, trees and vegetation came, and creatures of all types of animals were created.  Jesus was there in the beginning with His Father God. 

On day six, God made man in His own image and placed him in a beautiful garden.  Soon God realizing the man was lonely, putting him to sleep and taking from his side a rib and making woman.  They were happy and each evening they walked and talked with God.
 
However, yes the woman was deceived and ate of the forbidden fruit causing them to be removed from the garden and now mankind must toil and work for a living.   God slew a lamb as a sacrifice and made garments to cover Adam and Eve's nakedness.  This was the first blood sacrifice. 

God gave them a promise that he would send a redeemer and many Prophets in the Old Testament told how a virgin would bring forth a savior, who would be born in Bethlehem.  Isaiah the prophet in chapter 53 revealed how the Savior would suffer and die for the world, and that by his stripes we would be healed. 

So for this chapter, we view Jesus as a Spirit with His Father God in heaven, waiting for the promise and prophesies to come to pass.  Let us think about this, and research the Scriptures mentioned as we wait for the next chapter.


Prophesy where Jesus was to be born - - and the fulfillment:
Micah 5:2 "But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times."
Matthew 2:1-6 After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, "Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to w...orship him." 3 When King Herod heard this he was disturbed, and all Jerusalem with him. 4 When he had called together all the people's chief priests and teachers of the law, he asked them where the Messiah was to be born. 5 "In Bethlehem in Judea," they replied, "for this is what the prophet has written: 6" 'But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for out of you will come a ruler who will shepherd my people Israel.'"
 

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

A Tale of Two Seeds



 
 
A Tale of Two Seeds  (A true story by Laurie Moulton)

Around about the time that God was creating the all the plants and trees of the earth, he created two perfect seeds. One, was a grape seed, and the other, was a wheat seed (grain).

The grape seed grew into a twisty, leafy, vine, with many branches, and the wheat seed grew into a tall, golden, stalk, swaying gracefully in the wind. The two lived harmoniously for several seasons, yielding more perfect grape seeds and wheat seeds each year, and these seeds also growing and yielding the same.

God then gave humankind the ability to harvest the grapes and wheat. The grapes were turned into the most tastiest and perfect wine, and the wheat was ground into the fluffiest flour, which was then baked into the most delicious and perfect bread.

This perfect bread and wine were served at the most special of occasions: weddings, family gatherings, when welcoming new guests, etc. It became so prized that it was considered a luxury to have these things. The two joining together in a most divine meal — two becoming one, like a great marriage or the forming of a new life.
In the Egypt, when the Israelites were enslaved, they were unable to routinely partake of these precious foods.
 
On the night of the Passover, they were told by God to take the blood of a perfect, unblemished lamb and mark their doorways so the angel of death would pass by their homes. This blood of salvation was the same deep red color as the wine of those perfect grapes. The remainder, or body, of the lamb was then eaten, it’s white, fluffy wool, the same color of that most delicious bread. When the Israelites were finally free of Egypt, but now wandering in the barren desert, they cried out to God in hunger. What was God’s response?

Manna. Manna everywhere and enough to feed everyone—perfect bread from heaven.
Throughout the following centuries, humanity endured many uprisings, abuses of power, worshipping of false gods and idols, extravagant and selfish lifestyles with no regard for others or God Himself. The children of God were continuously persecuted.
God, laying witness to all of this, came to earth in the form of a most perfect, unblemished human via a humble, faithful peasant girl. The two, giving and carrying life in her womb to become one, like the perfect grape and wheat. Coursing through the veins of this most beautiful human, was blood as red as that most perfect wine, and his flesh as graceful and strong as that most perfect wheat that was turned into bread. His name was, is, and will forever be, Jesus. Like that perfect grape, he became the vine, and his followers, the branches.

Jesus brought the love of God to all. It didn’t matter whether Jew or Gentile, rich or poor. This was the beginning and the basis of the New Covenant. Love one another, including your enemies, and through this love, learn to honor and respect each other, do unto others as you would have them do unto you, and learn how to forgive, for in forgiveness lies the freedom of the soul and spirit. Do this all in the name of Jesus, for no one reaches the Father, except through him.
For this simple, yet beautiful and prudent teaching to all and for doing the works of God through the Son of God, Jesus and his followers were persecuted and shunned. Jesus already knew the ultimate outcome that was yet to come.
 
On the night before that fateful day, Jesus was in Jerusalem, celebrating the feast of Passover with his disciples (as the Passover feast was to be remembered and celebrated every year since the very first Passover in Egypt, to commemorate the Israelites’ freedom—this was a commandment from God, during the feast of the first Passover). This Passover feast is more commonly known as the Last Supper.
 
During this festival dinner, there was a plate of that same, perfect, unleavened bread and a cup of that same, perfect, delicious wine. Jesus, again, already knowing what was to come, took a piece of bread and broke it, and said, “Take, eat, for this is my body, which has been broken for you. Whenever you eat of it, do so in remembrance of me.” Next, he took the cup of wine and held it up and said, “take, drink, for this is my blood of the New Covenant, shed for you, for the forgiveness of sin.” Again, the perfect marriage of two becoming one for the ultimate salvation of all.
 
The following morning, Jesus was tried by the Romans, and crucified on the cross. While awaiting death to come, Jesus looked out across the crowd that had gathered, then he looked to God, and said, “Forgive them Father, for they know not what they do.”
 


Even in his final moments, Jesus, in the most unselfish of acts, took others before himself. With that most perfect blood flowing from the wounds in his hands and feet, and that most perfect flesh, pierced with the nails of crucifixion, he breathed his last and died. Died for the salvation and freedom of all.

So, when you take of your next communion bread and wine (or grape juice), remember, always remember the meaning behind it. Jesus was, is, and always will be the marriage and the planting of those two perfect seeds in us.
 
It is our God-given duty and right to go forth and bloom into the divine fruit of that vine and strength of that single grain with Him and in Him, and through Him, loving and forgiving others, as we ourselves, are loved and forgiven and saved by Him.
 
Let us never forget. Do this in the remembrance of Him.

 

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Cancellation of Assignments

 
Jesus Breaks every Assignment
 
 
As we began our Praying over our city meeting, we read scriptures that assure us that Jesus can and will set us free from those things that keep us in bondage - - He is ready and willing to give us gifts to enable us to serve him and others - - -
(If you then be free from captivity, STAND and do not be moved away from Christ.)
 
Psalms 68:18, 19  Thou hast ascended on high, thou hast led captivity captive: thou hast received gifts for men; yea, for the rebellious also, that the LORD God might dwell among them.  Blessed be the Lord, who daily loads us with benefits, even the God of our salvation.
Ephesians 4:7, 8  But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.  Wherefore he says, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men. 
Galatians 5:1  Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage. 
Romans 8:2  For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. 
  
The Children of Israel were rebellious and constantly forsaking God and worshiping idols and other gods of the heathen nations around them.  God used Babylon to punish them.
 
Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar, destroyed Jerusalem and took many Jews captive.
This Babylonian captivity of the Jews lasted 70 years.
 
During these times of captivity the Jews set up homes and were allowed to tend crops and raise sheep.  Assignments by the King were set up to rule over the households of the captives.  Many were forced to build towers, walls, and plant gardens for the King.
 
Babylon was destroyed in about 1531 BC by invaders from the northwest, the Hittites.
Medes, and the Persians. The Jewish captives, were allowed a certain amount of freedom to enjoy their religion and customs; Yet they were heavily taxed as were the Jews in Jesus day, when the Romans held rule over them.
 
Oppression hovered over the Jews because of their disobedience to worship God only.
 
As we prepare to pray over our city, we understand that because of rebellion in the hearts of many citizens, the enemy king satan has set up assignments to rule over individuals.  Strong towers of doubt and unbelief have been build holding our citizens captive and in bondage.
 
We have a greater KING, who is able to break the assignments set up by the enemy.  Our God can pull down the strong towers of resistance and leave not one stone unturned.  Jesus desires to remove all the old stones - - leaving nothing of the old.  All must be purged and nothing of the old to remain.  All must be made brand new, not the same.
 
Jesus is the Greater One, and a Greater King is able to break the assignments of the enemy king.
 
However Jesus cannot enter the domain of our citizens to tear down and replace, unless He is invited.  He is a gentleman, always polite and waits for a willing mind and a teachable spirit.  God will not force himself until He is wanted.  He is ready and powerful but He waits patiently. 
 
Jesus wants to rule supreme - only Him.  He cannot allow any thing or anyone else to rule along side of him.
 
No man can serve two masters.  Jesus demands we serve only Him.
 
Some have tried to clean up a little space for Jesus, while keeping things that were friendly and familiar, but that will not do.  Jesus is the deep cleaner and he desires to remove all those things that are not acceptable in His sight.
 
Jesus came to bring us Life, more abundantly and He is our Eternal Life and Glory. 
 
As we pray over our city, we prophesy that assignments are broken, walls and towers torn down, citizens become awake to realize their need for Jesus, and open eyes and ears to understand as God is calling them to repentance and to invite Jesus into their life.
 
Thank you Jesus for making everything new in our citizens as they invite you into their lives.