Spiritual Rants: May 25 “A Toi Story” Readings to read through the Bible in a year: 2 Samuel 7:1-8:18 John 14:15-31 Psalm 119:33-48 Proverbs 15:33

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Old Testament: 2 Samuel 7:1-8:18

Yahweh was going to take care of David’s foes, Toi was the only one to David would not say “no.”

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2 Samuel 7:1-17   David Asks To Build A House For The Lord

David felt guilty living in a gorgeous cedar house while the ark of the Lord dwelt in just a tent.  He set out to build a nice cedar house for the ark and asked Nathan, the prophet, what he should do.  Nathan told him to go ahead with the project, but, wait . . . no, that night Yahweh told Nathan he hadn’t been hearing right.  Yahweh asked Nathan why He’d need a big house when the tent had been fine all these years.

Yahweh told Nathan to tell David that He was going to make David famous and some day He was going to build a house for himself built by one of his descendants.  Yahweh promised that if his son disobeyed, He would personally smack him around.  But He would still love him!  Yahweh wasn’t going to take the kingdom away from David like He had taken it from Saul.

2 Samuel 7:18-29   Yahweh Is Going To Build A House For David

Although disappointed that Yahweh will not let him build the Temple, David thanks him for what He is going to do.  Yahweh is going to establish His people forever (v. 24), establish the descendants of David forever, and build David a house instead of have David build a house.  Wiersbe points out that the word “house” is “used fifteen times in this chapter and refers to David’s palace (vv. 1-2), the temple (vv.5-7, 13), and David’s dynasty, culminating in the Messiah, Jesus Christ (vv. 11, 13, 16, 18-29).”

Lightner observes four Biblical covenants in Scripture.  They represent four unilateral promises made to Israel that require nothing from Israel for their fulfillment.  One is found in this chapter.  Here is Lightner’s representation.

FourBiblical Covenants

2 Samuel 8:1-18   Toi Story

David defeated many of Israel’s enemies during his reign.  They included the Philistines, the Moabites, the Edomites and the Arameans.  The plunder included large amounts of gold and bronze.  One king, Toi, acted preemptively and gave David not only gold and bronze but also silver.  David dedicated all the precious metals to the Lord.

Joab was retained as the commander of David’s forces and Jehosophat was the recorder.  The priests were Zadok, the son of Ahitub and Ahimelech, the son of Abiathar.  David’s sons served as his advisors.

New Testament: John 14:15-31

When Jesus left there was One Who would to the disciples attend, He was the One who would be a close Friend.

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John 14:15-31  The Spirit Of The Thing

Jesus told His disciples that if they really loved Him they would do what He told them (v. 15).  John repeats this in his letter (1 John 2:3-11).

Have you ever thought how great it would be to live in the time of Christ and actually be with Him?  You know you can?  Not by time traveling, but by being sensitive to the Spirit you already have within you (if you have trusted Him).

Look at what Jesus tells us.  He says He will give a Helper (NASB), Counselor (RSV, NIV, HCSB), Advocate (NIV11, NET, NLT), or Comforter (KJV, LB).  He’ll be with us forever (v. 1)!  So Who is this Helper, Counselor, Advocate, or Comforter?  The original Greek term is “parakletos.”  First, notice He is “another.”  There are two words for “another” in Greek.  One means “another of a different kind” and the other is “another of the same kind.”  Guess one this is?  It’s another of the same kind.  He is God the same as Jesus is God.  He is God that remains with us during this dispensation or era of the church.

Do you know why people start not liking you or moving away from you when you trust Christ?  It was because you have the Holy Spirit in you and they don’t like God.  Remember way back in John 3, “This is the judgment, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the Light, for their deeds were evil. For everyone who does evil hates the Light, and does not come to the Light for fear that his deeds will be exposed. But he who practices the truth comes to the Light, so that his deeds may be manifested as having been wrought in God” (v. 19).  They are repulsed by the Light the same as two magnets push away from each other.  They move away from the Light within you, the Holy Spirit.

Jesus is prepping the boys because He knows He’s going to be leaving them soon.  He is letting them know He is not abandoning them (v. 18).  He is leaving a Comforter, Helper, Counselor and Advocate with them.  Back to the Greek term, “parakletos.”   Para means “along side” and kletos means “called.”  (A para-church organization is one that is called alongside the church to do the work of the kingdom.)  The Holy Spirit is One called alongside.  He is here to help us, comfort us, guide us and counsel us, and in general help us to do God’s will!

Unfortunately, not many Christians develop the ability to hear from the Holy Spirit.  Of course, there is a close connection with hearing from God subjectively and knowing the Word.  The ones who hear best also know the Word the most.  Colossians 3:18 command us to, “Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms [and] hymns [and] spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.”  In the parallel verse in Ephesians 5: 18b-20 we’re told to, ”  . . .    be filled with the Spirit, 19 speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody with your heart to the Lord; 20 always giving thanks for all things in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to God.”  Notice that the results of knowing the Word are similar to the results of being filled with the Spirit?  That’s because the two are related but they are not identical.  There are plenty of people who know a lot of Scripture but are quenching the Spirit (1Thes. 5: 19) and plenty who are getting carried away in things of the Spirit who don’t know the Word!  (The antidote to the mess in the church at Corinth was the Word, cf. all the teaching and 1 Cor. 14:26).

The Holy Spirit would not only be with them but He would be in them (v. 17, cf. Rom. 8:9).  But again, Jesus balances the subjective with the objective noting they are to know and “keep” His commandments (v. 21). The result would be that He and the Father would “disclose” Themselves to them (v. 21) and “make [their] abode” with them.  They not only needed to have “head knowledge” but also work things out into their lives through “heart knowledge” in following the Holy Spirit.

The Holy Spirit’s job was also to teach them (v. 26) and help their memories by bringing things to their “remembrance” (v. 26).   I often hear an objection to the inerrancy of the Word as “it was passed down at first by word of mouth.”  Two things about that:  1)  disciples memorized the words of the rabbis in that day (so it wasn’t like the modern game played at parties these days where whispered words are passed around a circle and distorted)  2)  the Holy Spirit would bring words to their remembrance so they had a great memory aid!

As a result of having the Comforter with them they would have peace.  The disciples had no need to be “troubled”or “fearful”  (v. 27).  The Holy Spirit would comfort them.

But none of this would happen unless Jesus first went away (v. 28, cf. John 16:7).  Jesus warned them that the “ruler of the world” was on his way to wreak havoc.  But Jesus  is going to obey the Father by going to the Cross so the world could see the love He has for the Father (v. 31).

He concludes by saying, “let us go from here” (v. 31).  The Christian life should always be one of forward movement.  A.W. Tozer compared the Christian life to an airplane with two wings.  One wing of the Christian life was the subjective guidance of the Holy Spirit, the other was the objective correction of the Word.  Without both wings, a Christian could not fly.  But also guess what happens to a plane in the air if there’s no forward movement?

Psalm 119:33-48    A Wisdom Psalm By Anonymous

The rules in Scripture can actually set you free, the commands in the Word can allow people to see.

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Psalm 119:33-48  Accept No Substitutes!!

Psalm 119 is a wisdom psalm about the glories of Scripture.  It is a teaching poem that has 22 stanzas corresponding to each letter of the Hebrew alphabet.  Today we look at the  He stanza which is like an “H” in English.  It’s pronounced “hay.”

The second stanza for today is the Vav grouping.   Vav or Waw is like a “V” in English.  It’s pronounced like “vahv.”

The He stanza is a prayer asking God to help the psalmist toe the line (vv. 33-40).  One specific is the request to keep him from “looking at vanity” (v. 37).

The Vav stanza, the psalmist says he “delights” in God’s Word (vv. 41-48, specifically v. 47).  I’ve always loved the Word.  I just didn’t get much of it in the church we grew up in.  There was a reading from Old Testament and a reading from the New Testament.  I loved hearing those though they were brief.  Now I get to write about the Bible all day if I want.

Despite contemporary opinion, reading the Bible can make you feel better.  Don’t believe the lies of the satanically inspired comedians these days (v. 42, cf. 1 Pet. 3:15).  The Bible really does “set you free” (cf. John 8:31-32).  Doing what He says we should do and meditating on His commandments (v. 48) will make you a better person and a happier person.

Accept no substitutes!!

Proverbs 15:33   Knowing

With pride comes fragility, honor comes only after humility.

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Have you heard that the fear of the Lord leads to wisdom?  I hope so.  It’s the theme of the book of Proverbs.  Remember going back to chapter 1, “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; Fools despise wisdom and instruction” (Prov. 1:7)?  I know it says “fear of the LORD” is the beginning of  “knowledge.”  But wisdom is “applied knowledge” so you have to have knowledge before you have wisdom.  And where do you get knowledge?  (Hint: see blog above.)

Fools, aka unbelievers, do not look for knowledge.  Therefore, they don’t have wisdom.  You can only really have wisdom if you’re a Christian and most of them don’t read their Bibles!!!!  Of course, unbelievers can have worldly wisdom but not spiritual wisdom.  They can’t understand spiritual things (cf. 1 Cor. 2:12-14).  They don’t “fear” or reverence the Lord.

The only way to learn is to humble yourself before a teacher or the Grand Teacher, the Lord.  Then you will have “honor” from God (v. 33b).  Then you will have more wisdom than your teachers (cf. Ps. 119:99, but we haven’t gotten there yet!).

Choose Life: Scripture:   John 14:21    NASB    “Purpose Pitch”

“‘He who has My commandments and keeps them is the one who loves Me; and he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and will disclose Myself to him.'”      John 14:21

Years ago, not long after I was saved, my pastor got all excited.  He had met an elderly gentleman and asked him his favorite verse.  It was our verse for today, John 14: 21.  My pastor said that if a man of that age thought so highly of a verse, it must be a good one.  There is probably some truth to that.

Think about our verse.  It essentially tells us how to live our lives so it will have meaning.  Obey God and we will have a good relationship with Him.

I’ve never liked the idea that the Christian life is a matter of finding sin and stomping it out. People can improve their lives by becoming more righteous.  But becoming more righteous by disciplining our “flesh” will just result in self-righteousness.  Self-righteousness is not godliness.  Only by following the Spirit’s leading (cf. today’s reading, John 14:16, “I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever”) can we truly become more like God in the way He wants.  That is why Jesus told the disciples about the Holy Spirit right before telling them to keep His commandments.  We can only truly obey God in His power, through the Holy Spirit.

When we are obeying His Word, that is, keeping His commandments, in the power of the Holy Spirit, the result is a good relationship with God.

How well do you know God’s Word?  Are you keeping His commandments?  Is God “disclosing” Himself to you?

If He is, you will find that you have chosen life (Deut. 30:19)!

Fun Application:   

You learn how the “flesh” aka “the sin nature” can disrupt our progress in the Christian life in Romans 6 and 7 (see blog, The Widow Maker and Not My Problem).  The answer to the problem of the flesh is in Romans 8 (see blog Get The ‘Led’ Out).

The purpose of the Bible is to help us have a relationship with God.  Everything written in the Bible was written toward that end.  If we keep learning His Word, the Bible will achieve its purpose.  Reading through the Bible like you are, is a good beginning toward knowing it like you should.  How are you doing in your daily Bible reading?  Is your relationship with the Lord growing deeper?

The purpose of the “Choose Life” is to pick a positive help out of the One Year Bible (OYB) reading plan for the day. There is always something positive in the Word of God to cheer us and give us strength. For more on today’s reading, check out my One Year Bible blog:  A Toi Story

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