–That I may declare Your praises in the gates of Daughter Zion, and there rejoice in Your salvation.
All who have this hope in Him purify themselves, just as He is pure.
My loved ones, let us devote ourselves to loving one another. Love comes straight from God, and everyone who loves is born of God and truly knows God. Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love.
Because of this, the love of God is a reality among us: God sent His only Son into the world so that we could find true life through Him. This is the embodiment of true love: not that we have loved God first, but that He loved us and sent His unique Son on a special mission to become an atoning sacrifice for our sins. So, my loved ones, if God loved us so sacrificially, surely we should love one another. No one has ever seen God with human eyes; but if we love one another, God truly lives in us. Consequently God’s love has accomplished its mission among us.
How can we be sure that He truly lives in us and that we truly live in Him? By one fact: He has given us His Spirit.
We have watched what God has done, and we stand ready to provide eyewitness testimonies to the reality that the Father sent the Son to be the Savior of the world.
If anyone unites with our confession that Jesus is God’s own Son, then God truly lives in that person and that person lives in God. We have experienced and we have entrusted our lives to the love of God in us.
God is love. Anyone who lives faithfully in love also lives faithfully in God, and God lives in him.
This love is fulfilled with us,
so that on the day of judgment we have confidence based on our identification with Jesus in this world.
Love will never invoke fear. Perfect love expels fear, particularly the fear of punishment.
The one who fears punishment has not been completed through love.
We love because He has first loved us. If someone claims, “I love God,” but hates his brother or sister, then he is a liar. Anyone who does not love a brother or sister, whom he has seen, cannot possibly love God, whom he has never seen.
He gave us a clear command, that all who love God must also love their brothers and sisters. (1 John 4:7-21)
“I still remember the way you clung to Me in your youth, in the early days of our union.
Like a young bride, you loved the vows you made.
As I led you from slavery in Egypt to your freedom in Canaan, you drew close to Me.
Even in the barren wilderness along the way, I filled your every need.
In those days, you, Israel, were set apart for Me, the Eternal.
You were like the first portions of the harvest—devoted and true.
All who defied this arrangement and ate My portion for themselves were guilty,
and evil rained down upon them.” (Jeremiah 2:2-3)
Therefore tell the people:
This is what the LORD Almighty says: ‘Return to me,’ declares the LORD Almighty, ‘and I will return to you,’ says the LORD Almighty.
“From the days of your ancestors you have ignored my commandments and have not kept them! Return to me, and I will return to you,” says the LORD who rules over all. “But you say, ‘How should we return?‘
But you have behaved more wickedly than your ancestors. See how all of you are following the stubbornness of your evil hearts instead of obeying Me.
(Zechariah 1:3; Malachi 3:7; Jeremiah 16:12)
Repentance is a Change of Direction; A Change of Heart
Let Us Go to the Lord’s House!
We are creatures of choice and we have the ability to choose how we will react to any circumstance.
Let your eyes look straight ahead, and your eyelids look right before you.
Ponder the path of your feet, and let all your ways be established. (Psalm 4:25-26)
Choose wisely before taking the first step and as you walk, know that the Lord walks with you when you choose to
align your heart in agreement with His Word and life in alignment with His Will. His Holy Spirit is given to lead and
guide you into all Truth every step of the Way into Everlasting Life in Christ Jesus, the Anointed One and His anointing.
If you decide that you’re not willing to serve Him, then today is the day for you to choose whom you will serve.
…But as for me and my family, we will serve the Eternal. (Joshua 24:15)
Those of us who follow Jesus today come to know Him as that gentle but strong shepherd who guides us through life if we will follow Him.
The Eternal is my shepherd, He cares for me always.
He provides me rest in rich, green fields
beside streams of refreshing water.
He soothes my fears;
He makes me whole again,
steering me off worn, hard paths
to roads where truth and righteousness echo His name.
Even in the unending shadows of death’s darkness,
I am not overcome by fear.
Because You are with me in those dark moments,
near with Your protection and guidance,
I am comforted.
You spread out a table before me,
provisions in the midst of attack from my enemies;
You care for all my needs, anointing my head with soothing, fragrant oil,
filling my cup again and again with Your grace.
Certainly Your faithful protection and loving provision will pursue me
where I go, always, everywhere.
I will always be with the Eternal,
in Your house forever.
|What happens when you come into agreement with
God’s Word, His Spirit and His people
Then this city will bring me renown, joy, praise and honor before all nations on earth that hear of all the good things I do for it; and they will be in awe and will tremble at the abundant prosperity and peace I provide for it.
A Call to Be Holy
If you address as Father the One who impartially judges according to each one’s work, conduct yourselves in fear during the time of your stay on earth; knowing that you were not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers,
but with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ.
For He was foreknown before the foundation of the world, but has appeared in these last times for the sake of you
who through Him are believers in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory,
so that your faith and hope are in God.
(1 Peter 1:16-21)
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. (Matthew 5:8)
He will call out to me, ‘You are my Father, my God, the Rock my Savior.’ (Psalm 89:26)
My brothers and sisters, believers in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ must not show favoritism.
But if you show favoritism, you sin and are convicted by the law as lawbreakers. (James 2:1; 9)
Do not show partiality in judging; hear both small and great alike. Do not be afraid of anyone, for judgment belongs to God. Bring me any case too hard for you, and I will hear it.
For the LORD your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great God, mighty and awesome, who shows no partiality and accepts no bribes.
For God does not show favoritism.
As for those who were held in high esteem–whatever they were makes no difference to me; God does not show favoritism–they added nothing to my message.
(Deuteronomy 1:17;10:17; Romans 2:11; Galatians 2:6)
Anyone who does wrong will be repaid for their wrongs, and there is no favoritism. (Colossians 3:25)
Create in Me a Clean Heart, O God
Hide Your face from my sins And blot out all my iniquities.
Create in me a clean heart, O God, And renew a steadfast spirit within me.
Do not cast me away from Your presence And do not take Your Holy Spirit from me. (Psalm 51:9-11)
And God, who knows the heart, testified to them giving them the Holy Spirit, just as He also did to us;
and He made no distinction between us and them, cleansing their hearts by faith. (Acts 15:8-9)
Opening his mouth, Peter said: “I most certainly understand now that God is not one to show partiality,
but in every nation the man who fears Him and does what is right is welcome to Him.” (Acts 10:34-35)
For He chose us in Him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in His sight. In love.
For those God foreknew He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. (Romans 8:29)
Beyond all question, the mystery from which true godliness springs is great:
He appeared in the flesh, was vindicated by the Spirit, was seen by angels, was preached among the nations, was believed on in the world, was taken up in glory. (1 Timothy 3:16)
But in these last days He has spoken to us by His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, and through whom also He made the universe. (Hebrews 1:2)
Since the children have flesh and blood, He too shared in their humanity so that by His death He might break the power of him who holds the power of death–that is, the devil–
Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is one Lord!
And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.
Keep these words in your heart that I am telling you today. Do your best to teach them to your children.
Talk about them when you sit in your house and when you walk on the road and when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as something special to see on your hand and on your forehead.
Write them beside the door of your house and on your gates.
The Lord your God will bring you into the land He promised to your fathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, to give to you.
The Lord will watch over your coming and going, now and forever. (Psalm 121:8)
To me, one of the most precious scriptures in all the Word of God is Psalm 133.
Verse one says, “Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!”
There are three Hebrew words that are critical to understanding the power and promise of this verse.
The first is pleasant—the Hebrew word means “musical.”
The second is “dwell”—the Hebrew word means to pitch a tent.
The final word is “unity”—the Hebrew word means agreement.
It is the same word, “echoed,” used in Deuteronomy 6:4 by Moses—“Hear O Israel, the Lord our God is one.”
By joining in agreement with God’s Word, His Holy Spirit and His people in the city where He wrote His name, you are creating Heavenly music as you pitch your tent in the Holy City together with prophets, priests, and kings of old and releasing God’s prophetic power in your life. That’s amazing!
And it is greatly needed right now.
(Dr. Mike Evans)
“God’s way of salvation is made available through the Jews. But the time is coming—it has, in fact, come—when what you’re called will not matter and where you go to worship will not matter.
“It’s who you are and the way you live that count before God.
Your worship must engage your spirit in the pursuit of truth.
That’s the kind of people the Father is out looking for:
those who are simply and honestly themselves before Him in their worship.
God is sheer being itself—Spirit.
Those who worship Him must do it out of their very being, their spirits, their true selves, in adoration.” (John 4:22-24)
God’s loving presence has come to all people and not just to Jews. The truth is, that through Jesus, God is making all people, and not just one chosen nation, clean and whole.
As we let go of the traditions of men, we are letting go of much that divides us from God and one another
So that we can take hold of the commands of God through steadfast faith in Christ Jesus, the Son of God.
I pray that we be truly Christ’s disciples–His Holy Spirit our guide and teacher leading us out of dead religious
thinking and traditions. To walk as Christ did through and past every obstacle on the narrow road that leads to
Real Life that we be no distracted, sidetracked, blindsided in any counterfeit pursuit that seeks to replace complete
confidence in God’s Son (for all of God’s promises are “Yes and Amen” in Christ Jesus). That nothing or no one separate
us from God’s unfailing love in Christ Jesus. Amen.
A song of David for those journeying to worship.
This is a Davidic psalm celebrating the grandeur and significance of Jerusalem and its temple.
It is ironic that Jerusalem means “city of peace” since more battles have been fought over it than over any other city.
I was so happy when my fellow pilgrims said,
“Let’s go to the house of the Eternal!”
Then the King will say to those on his right,
‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world.’ (Matthew 25:34)
We have made the journey, and now we are standing
within your gates, O Jerusalem.
Jerusalem! What a magnificent city!
Buildings so close together, so compact.
God’s people belong here. Every tribe of the Eternal
makes its way to Jerusalem—
Just as God decreed for Israel
to come together and give thanks to the Eternal.
In Jerusalem, justice is the order of the day because there sit the judges
and kings, the descendants of David.
Ask heaven to grant peace to Jerusalem:
“May those who love you prosper.
O Jerusalem, may His peace fill this entire city!
May this citadel be quiet and at ease!”
It’s because of people—my family, friends, and acquaintances—
that I say, “May peace permeate you.”
And because the house of Eternal One, our God, is here, know this:
I will always seek your good!
The Lord will rescue me from every evil attack and will bring me safely to his heavenly kingdom. TO HIM BE GLORY FOR EVER AND EVER. AMEN (2 TIMOTHY 4:18)
As Christ spent one-fourth of His recorded ministry dealing with the enemy; let this be a Word of warning to us, as
Christ’s followers, to be constantly alert that we open our minds not to Satan but to God our Father who is in heaven.
And you know that God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power. Then Jesus went around doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him. (Acts 10:38)
Jesus: The truth is that the Son does nothing on His own; all these actions are led by the Father.
The Son watches the Father closely and then mimics the work of the Father.
The Father loves the Son, so He does not hide His actions. Instead, He shows Him everything, and the things not yet revealed by the Father will dumbfound you.
The Father can give life to those who are dead; in the same way, the Son can give the gift of life to those He chooses.
The Father does not exert His power to judge anyone. Instead, He has given the authority as Judge to the Son.
So all of creation will honor and worship the Son as they do the Father.
If you do not honor the Son, then you dishonor the Father who sent Him.
I tell you the truth: eternal life belongs to those who hear My voice and believe in the One who sent Me.
These people have no reason to fear judgment because they have already left death and entered life.
I tell you the truth: a new day is imminent—in fact, it has arrived—when the voice of the Son of God will penetrate death’s domain, and everyone who hears will live.
You see, the Father radiates with life;
and He also animates the Son of God with the same life-giving beauty and power to exercise judgment over all of creation. Indeed, the Son of God is also the Son of Man.
If this sounds amazing to you, what is even more amazing is that when the time comes, those buried long ago will hear His voice through all the rocks, sod, and soil and step out of decay into resurrection.
When this hour arrives, those who did good will be resurrected to life,
and those who did evil will be resurrected to judgment.
I have not ever acted, and will not in the future act, on My own. I listen to the directions of the One who sent Me and act on these divine instructions. For this reason, My judgment is always fair and never self-serving. I’m committed to pursuing God’s agenda and not My own. (John 5:17-30)
For the worship leader. A song of David.
Psalm 68 is a hymn describing God as a Divine Warrior,
marching from Sinai through the wilderness to make His home in Jerusalem.
May the True God rise up and show Himself;
may those who are united against Him be dispersed,
while the people who hate Him run away at the sight of Him.
As smoke disappears when it is blown by the wind,
may You blow away Your enemies forever.
As wax melts in the presence of fire,
may the wicked heart melt away in God’s presence.
But may those who are righteous rejoice
in the presence of the True God—so may they be glad and rejoice.
Yes, let them celebrate with joy!
Sing songs of praise to the name that belongs to the True God!
Let your voices ring out in songs of praise to Him, the One who rides through the deserted places.
His name is the Eternal;
celebrate in His glorious presence.
The True God who inhabits sacred space
is a father to the fatherless, a defender of widows.
He makes a home for those who are alone.
He frees the prisoners and leads them to prosper.
Yet those who rebel against Him live in the barren land without His blessings and prosperity.
O True God, when You led Your enslaved people from Egypt,
when You journeyed with us through the wilderness,
The whole world trembled! The sky poured down rain
at the power of Your presence; even Mount Sinai trembled in Your presence,
the presence of the True God, the God of Israel.
You sent a heavy downpour to soak the ground, O True God.
You refreshed the land—the land Your people would inherit—when it was parched and dry.
Your covenant people made their homes in the land,
and because You are so good, You provided for those crushed by poverty, O True God.
The Lord gives the word;
there are very many women ready to tell the good news:
“Kings who lead the armies are on the run!
They are on the run!
And the woman who stays at home is ready, too,
ready to enjoy the treasures that they’ve left behind!”
When they lay down among the campfires and open the saddlebags, imagine what they’ll find—
a beautiful dove, its wings covered with silver,
its feathers a shimmering gold.
When the Almighty scattered the kings from that place,
it was snowing in Zalmon.
O Mount Bashan, you mighty mountain of the True God;
mountain of many peaks, O Mount Bashan.
Why are you so jealous, O mountain of many peaks,
when you look at the mountain the True God has chosen as His dwelling place?
The Eternal will surely abide on Mount Zion forever.
The chariots of God are innumerable;
there are thousands upon thousands of them.
The Lord is in their midst, just as He was at Mount Sinai.
He has come into the holy place.
When You ascended the sacred mountain,
with Your prisoners in tow, Your captives in chains,
You sat in triumph receiving gifts from men,
Even from those who rebel against You, so that You, the Eternal God, might take up residence there.
Blessed be the Lord
who carries our heavy loads every day,
the True God who is our salvation.
We know our God is the God who delivers us,
and the Eternal, the Lord, is the One who saves us from the grip of death.
The True God will certainly shatter the skulls of those who oppose Him;
He’ll smash the hairy head of the man who continues on his sinful ways.
The Lord said,
“I will bring the enemy back from Bashan.
I will bring them back from the deepest parts of the sea,
So that you may plant your feet in their blood
and your dogs may lick up their portion of the foe.”
The solemn march in Your honor, O True God, has come into view;
the march that celebrates my God, my King, has come into the sanctuary.
The singers went first, and the musicians came last
between rows of girls who played tambourines.
Come, let us gather to bless the True God
and to praise the Eternal, He who is the fountain of Israel, the source of our life!
Look! There are the rulers of Benjamin, the youngest in the lead.
A great crowd follows
The princes of Judah,
the princes of Zebulun, the princes of Naphtali.
[Your God is the One who has given you strength];
show Your power, O True God, as You have done for us.
Because of Your magnificent temple in Jerusalem,
many kings will line up to bring You gifts.
Reprimand the beasts in the tall grass,
the herds of bulls that are with the people’s calves,
Trampling over the pieces of silver.
He has driven out the people who love to be at war.
Ambassadors will come from Egypt;
the people of Ethiopia will reach out their hands to the one True God.
Let all the kingdoms of the earth sing to the True God.
Sing songs of praise to the Lord.
To Him who rides high up beyond the heavens, which have been since ancient times,
watch and listen. His voice speaks, and it is powerful and strong.
Attribute power to the one True God;
His royal splendor is evident over Israel,
and His power courses through the clouds.
O True God, You are awesome from the holy place where You dwell.
The True God of Israel Himself
grants strength and power to His people.
Blessed be our God!
Literally, selah, likely a musical direction from a Hebrew root meaning “to lift up”
when you don’t follow the advice of those who delight in wicked schemes,
When you avoid sin’s highway,
when judgment and sarcasm beckon you, but you refuse.
For you, the Eternal’s Word is your happiness.
It is your focus—from dusk to dawn.
You are like a tree,
planted by flowing, cool streams of water that never run dry.
Your fruit ripens in its time;
your leaves never fade or curl in the summer sun.
No matter what you do, you prosper.
For those who focus on sin, the story is different.
They are like the fallen husk of wheat, tossed by an open wind, left deserted and alone.
In the end, the wicked will fall in judgment;
the guilty will be separated from the innocent.
Their road suddenly will end in death,
yet the journey of the righteous has been charted by the Eternal.