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Posts tagged ‘Red Sea’

3 Warnings in Discerning God’s Will.


woman seeking direction
(http://www.stockfreeimages.com)
There can be so much worry involved in knowing God‘s willWhat if I’m wrong? What if I missed it? We either blame ourselves or blame God, and both scenarios expose a small view of God. But God doesn’t want His desires to be a secret. He wants us to know what’s best, and that is why He gives us a lamp to our feet and tells us to ask for wisdom. So, practically, how does God reveal His desires, His will to us?
Prerequisite to Knowing God’s Will 
Romans 12:1-3 talks about giving ourselves entirely to the Lord, having our minds (thoughts, hopes, dreams and aspirations) transformed by Christ. Then we will know and be an example of what God’s will is. So the question is not “What is God’s will for my life?” but “How does my life fit into God’s will?” This is saying, “I’ve surrendered all I have; where do I go to fit into God’s work?” rather than saying, “What does God have for me to make me happy?”
So, before knowing God’s will, you have to ask yourself:
  • Is He really Lord of your life? Are you willing to go anywhere or do anything He might want for you (Matt. 16:24-25)? Are you being fully controlled by the Holy Spirit through faith (Gal. 5:16; Rom 12:1-2)?
  • Is there any unconfessed sin that has broken your fellowship with Him (Is. 59:2)?
3 Ways to Discern and Know God’s Will 
As we seek God’s will, we ought to actually ask Him for wisdom. Wisdom is the right application of knowledge, not a special revelation. However, if we don’t ask in faith (acting on what we know to be true), we might as well not expect anything from God. We must be committed to act on the understanding that He gives us (James 1:5-6).
The GAS acronym gives us the “fuel” (or confidence) to walk out what God has for us:
1. God’s Word. God’s written Word is our ultimate source of authority in all areas of life. What decisions has God already given us clear direction about, based on the Bible? Ask God to lead you to specific passages of how you fit into His plan.
2. Ask mature believers. Ask for advice from mature Christians who are viewed by many as mature, who are informed about what God is doing around the world, someone who knows you well, who will be objective with you and who knows and walks with God and knows His ways.
“For lack of guidance a nation falls, but many advisers make victory sure” (Prov. 11:14).
“Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed” (Prov. 15:22).
“He who listens to a life-giving rebuke will be at home among the wise. He who ignores discipline despises himself, but whoever heeds correction gains understanding. The fear of the Lord teaches a man wisdom, and humility comes before honor” (Prov. 15:31-33).
“The way of a fool seems right to him, but a wise man listens to advice” (Prov. 12:15).
3. Spirit-filled reasoning. With Christ on the throne, think strategic. God has given us a sound and sanctified mind He expects us to love Him with and be a good steward using. Using wisdom and reason we will follow the examples of the apostles:
“We thought it best … ” (1 Thess. 3:1-2).
“I thought it was necessary … ” (Phil. 2:25-26).
“If it is fitting … ” (1 Cor. 16:3-4).
“It is not desirable … ” (Acts 6:2-4).
“It seemed good … ” (Acts 15:22, 28).
Ask yourself:
  • How does it fit in the overall plan of God? What would be the most strategic choice as an investment of my life? How much _______ will it take? Is there a need? Is there a way? Are there enough people, finances, materials? What would prepare and develop me in the future? What are my motives? Is it to gain approval or acceptance from someone, money, power or to stay comfortable?
  • How can I best INVEST my life (interests, nature/personality, vision, experiences, spiritual Gifts, treasure)?
3 Warnings in Discerning God’s Will 
Be careful of authoritative reliance on subjective means.
1. Be cautious of “the open door policy.” Saying that God’s will is whatever opportunity works out for you. When Moses was leading the Israelites out of Egypt and ran into the Red Sea, that very well could have looked like a “closed door.” Or when Paul and Silas were in jail and a earthquake opened the jail doors but they stayed put. Because they didn’t interpret the literal “open door” as God wanting them to go through it, the jailer and his household came to put their faith in Christ (Acts 16:22-40).
Sometimes a “closed door” may just be an opportunity to give God more glory. Just because an opportunity comes up doesn’t mean it is the best option for your time and resources.
2. Be careful to not judge God’s will by your “feelings of peace.” This is not scriptural (and when it says God will give us peace that passes understanding, it is not talking about decision-making but worry). If our feelings were the authority of God’s will, Jesus would not have died on the cross (Luke 22:42-44; Heb. 12:1-4). God can use our feelings, and oftentimes our desires can be in line with His desire, but when making decisions, it is unwise to use them alone.
Another example is in Acts 21:10-14 and 20:22-23, when the Christians let their feelings try to govern Paul’s decision, but Paul would not let the fear of hard times change his decision.
Faith is established on truth, and truth is not relative but established on fact, not hunches, feelings, impressions, looking for signs or mystical experiences.
3. Be cautious of listening to ungodly counsel. Everyone has an opinion, and most people will share it with you. But just because someone is a good friend does not mean the advice they are giving you is godly. Before taking someone’s advice make sure to weigh what they are saying against Scripture. Does what they are saying match up with God’s Word or contradict it? It might even be best to not talk about important decisions with friends who will encourage you to do the wrong thing.
And finally, step out in faith. Faith is not waiting until you know 100 percent. Genuine faith is moving in that direction, putting confidence more in God’s ability to guide or re-direct than in your ability to decide. It means putting your trust ultimately in God and not in self, circumstances or others.
The more we grow as Christians the more decisions we will make by faith in God, from seemingly big ones like who you’ll marry, to seemingly small ones like what should you watch on TV. It is important to be ready to trust God in your decision whether it turns out the way you expected or not. And remember that with God the process is as important as the product.
Source: CHARISMA MAGAZINE/ SPIRITLED WOMAN.
Laura Krokosthe creator and host of Missional Women, is married and has three kids, two of whom are adopted. Laura and her husband have been missionaries to college students for 11 years, serving with Master Plan Ministries. Laura is the staff women’s development coordinator and has discipled more than 150 girls, led more than 30 Bible studies and speaks 10 to 20 times a year. She is an award-winning author of a 12-week Bible study on 1 Samuel, as well as Beholding Him, Becoming Missional, the recently released Reach: How to Use Your Social Media Influence for the Glory of God and A Devotional Journey through Judges, a devotional to accompany the free online Bible study at TheBookofJudges.com.

The Tabernacle,


The Tabernacle

Rendering of the Tabernacle in the Wilderness

Photo: Getty Images

Overview of the Tabernacle, or Tent of Meeting.

The tabernacle was a portable place of worship God commanded the Israelites to build after he rescued them from slavery in Egypt. It was used from a year after they crossed the Red Sea until King Solomon built the first temple in Jerusalem, a period of 400 years.Tabernacle means “place of meeting” or “tent of meeting,” since it was the place where God dwelt among his people on earth.While on Mount Sinai, Moses received minutely detailed instructions from God on how the tabernacle and all its elements were to be constructed. The people gladly donated the various materials from spoils they had received from the Egyptians.

The entire 75 by 150 foot tabernacle compound was enclosed by a court fence of linen curtains attached to poles and fastened to the ground with ropes and stakes. At the front was a 30 foot wide gate of the court, made of purple and scarlet yarn woven into twined linen.

Once inside the courtyard, a worshiper would see a bronze altar, or altar of burnt offering, where offerings of animal sacrifices were presented. Not far from that was a bronze laver or basin, where the priests performed ceremonial purification washings of their hands and feet.

Toward the rear of the compound was the tabernacle tent itself, a 15 by 45 foot structure made of an acacia wood skeleton overlaid with gold, then covered with layers made of goat hair, rams’ skins dyed red, and goat skins. Translators disagree on the top covering: badger skins(KJV), sea cow skins (NIV), dolphin or porpoise skins (AMP). Entry to the tent was made through a screen of blue, purple, and scarlet yarn woven into fine twined linen. The door always faced east.

The front 15 by 30 foot chamber, or holy place, contained a table with showbread, also called shewbread or bread of the presence. Across from it was a lampstand or menorah, fashioned after an almond tree. Its seven arms were hammered from a solid piece of gold. At the end of that room was an altar of incense.

The rear 15 by 15 foot chamber was the most holy place, or holy of holies, where only the high priest could go, once a year on the Day of Atonement. Separating the two chambers was a veil made with blue, purple and scarlet yarns and fine linen. Embroidered on that curtain were images of cherubim, or angels. In that sacred chamber was only one object, the ark of the covenant.

The ark was a wooden box overlaid with gold, with statues of two cherubim on top facing each other, their wings touching. The lid, or mercy seat, was where God met with his people. Inside the ark were the tablets of the Ten Commandments, a pot of manna, and Aaron‘s almond wood staff.

The entire tabernacle took seven months to complete, and when it was finished, the cloud of the presence of God descended on it.

When the Israelites camped in the desert, the tabernacle was situated in the very center of camp, with the 12 tribes encamped around it. During its use, the tabernacle was moved many times. Everything could be packed into oxcarts when the people left, but the ark of the covenant was hand-carried by Levites. The tabernacle’s journey began at Sinai, then it stood for 35 years at Kadesh. After Joshua and the Hebrews crossed the Jordan River into the Promised Land, the tabernacle stood at Gilgal for seven years. Its next home was Shiloh, where it remained until the time of the Judges. It was later set up in Nob and Gibeon. King David erected the tabernacle at Jerusalem and had the ark brought from Perez-uzzah and set in it.

The tabernacle and all its components had symbolic meanings. Overall, the tabernacle was a foreshadowing of the perfect tabernacle, Jesus Christ. The Bible constantly points to the coming Messiah, who fulfilled God’s loving plan for the salvation of the world:

We have a High Priest who sat down in the place of honor beside the throne of the majestic God in heaven. There he ministers in the heavenly Tabernacle, the true place of worship that was built by the Lord and not by human hands.And since every high priest is required to offer gifts and sacrifices, our High Priest must make an offering, too. If he were here on earth, he would not even be a priest, since there already are priests who offer the gifts required by the law. They serve in a system of worship that is only a copy, a shadow of the real one in heaven. For when Moses was getting ready to build the Tabernacle, God gave him this warning: “Be sure that you make everything according to the pattern I have shown you here on the mountain.”

But now Jesus, our High Priest, has been given a ministry that is far superior to the old priesthood, for he is the one who mediates for us a far better covenant with God, based on better promises. (Hebrews 8:1-6, NLT)

Today, God continues to dwell among his people but in an even more intimate way. After Jesus’ ascension into heaven, he sent the Holy Spirit to live inside every Christian.

Pronunciation:

TAB ur nak ul

Bible References:

Exodus chapters 25-27, 35-40; Leviticus 8:10, 17:4; Numbers 1, 3, 4, 5, 7, 9-10, 16:9, 19:13, 31:30, 31:47; Joshua 22; 1 Chronicles 6:32, 6:48, 16:39, 21:29, 23:36; 2 Chronicles 1:5;Psalms 27:5-6; 78:60; Acts 7:44-45; Hebrews 8:2, 8:5, 9:2, 9:8, 9:11, 9:21, 13:10; Revelation 15:5.

Also Known As:

Tabernacle of the congregation, wilderness tabernacle, tabernacle of witness, tent of witness, tabernacle of Moses.

Example:

The tabernacle was where God lived among his chosen people.(Sources: gotquestions.orgSmith’s Bible Dictionary, William Smith; Holman Illustrated Bible Dictionary, Trent C. Butler, General Editor; The New Complete Bible Dictionary, T. Alton Bryant, Editor; and The New Unger’s Bible Dictionary, R.K. Harrison, Editor)

From 

Jack Zavada, a career writer and contributor for About.com, is host to a Christian website for singles. Never married, Jack feels that the hard-won lessons he has learned may help other Christian singles make sense of their lives. His articles and ebooks offer great hope and encouragement. To contact him or for more information, visit Jack’s Bio Page.

Israel Closes Eilat Airport Near Egypt Border Due To Terror Concerns.


JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Israel shut its southernmost Eilat airport near Egypt’s Sinai peninsula on Thursday until further notice because of security concerns, the military said.

israel-closes-eilat-airport-near-egypt-border

“Due to security assessments, the Israeli army has instructed Eilat Airport to cancel all departures and arrivals,” a military spokeswoman said, giving no further details.

The airport brings tourists to Israel’s Red Sea Eilat resort and the closure follows heightened concerns about Islamist militant activity in the neighboring Sinai.

Israel said last month that it had boosted its rocket defenses near its southern border to counter possible attacks from militants deeply opposed to the Jewish state.

A rocket fired from Sinai landed in Israel in July and its remnants were found in hills north of Eilat, which abuts Egypt to the west and Jordan to the east.

Violence in the Sinai has surged since the army ousted Islamist President Mohamed Mursi on July 3, with almost daily assaults against Egyptian forces reported in the desert expanse.

Israel had already invested heavily in security around Eilat since the fall of U.S.-backed Egyptian strongman Hosni Mubarak in 2011, which triggered concerns about the future of a 1979 peace treaty with Egypt, Israel’s first such deal with an Arab country.

Earlier this year Israel completed a 250-km (160-mile) barrier with Egypt, stretching from Eilat’s outskirts to the Palestinian Gaza Strip on the Mediterranean.

Other measures being taken to defend against jihadists in Sinai include an innovative, Israeli-designed missile deflector being fitted aboard planes. source – Yahoo News.

by NTEB News Desk

Israel Deploys Iron Dome Near Red Sea.


20130719-150307.jpg

Israel deployed its Iron Dome missile defence system near the Red Sea resort of Eilat, which is close to the border with Egypt, an army spokeswoman said.

“An Iron Dome battery was deployed this morning in Eilat,” the spokeswoman told AFP.
“The batteries are deployed in several areas of the country and moved around according to changes in the (security) situation,” she added without elaborating.

But Israeli media said the deployment was related to unrest in Egypt, where the army is waging a campaign to drive militants out of the Sinai Peninsula, which borders Eilat.

Ynet news website also pointed out that the deployment came at the height of the tourist season in southern Israel.
Eilat has been the target of attacks in the past. In April the town was struck by rocket fire from the Sinai and debris of a rocket that hit northern Eilat on July 4 were found days later.

Egypt’s official news agency MENA on Thursday reported that 10 jihadists had been killed in the Sinai Peninsula in the past two days during the army offensive launched to curtail a surge in violence since Islamist president Mohamed Morsi was ousted on July 3 in a military-led coup.

The Iron Dome deployment also comes hours after two rockets fired from the Gaza Strip hit southern Israel late on Thursday night, causing no casualties or damage, police said. source – France 24.

by NTEB News Desk

Pentagon to Revise Danger Pay Country Roster.


A Pentagon security review shows conditions improving in 18 countries once considered so dangerous that U.S. military who served there found something extra in their paychecks each month.

Now the Defense Department wants to take those countries and five waterways off the danger pay roster, saving about $120 million each year while taking a bite out of an estimated 56,000 troops’ salaries, The Associated Press has learned.

Senior defense and military leaders are expected to meet later this week to review the matter and are poised to approve a new plan. Pentagon press secretary George Little declined to discuss details but said no final decisions have been made.

Senior military leaders came up with the proposed list of locations in their regions, including several countries in the heart of the tumultuous Middle East, such as Jordan, where hundreds of troops have recently deployed because of the bloody Syrian civil war on its border, and Bahrain.

Officials have argued that if service members are allowed to bring their families with them for assignments then it is difficult to argue that they should receive danger pay.

Defense officials said the proposal would strip the stipend — which can be up to $225 per month — from tens of thousands, including thousands stationed in Kuwait, which was a key hub during the Iraq war. It also would affect thousands of sailors who routinely travel through the Persian Gulf region on ships or airmen who fly over the Gulf.

The $225 monthly cut in pay would come regardless of the service member’s base salary, which can range from a low of roughly $18,000 a year for a brand new recruit to a high of nearly $235,000 a year for a four-star general with more than 40 years in the military. Troops also can receive a variety of other allowances for housing, clothing or job specialties.

Defense officials described the proposal on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly about it.

Under the plans being discussed, troops would still receive the extra money if they serve in Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, Lebanon, Pakistan, Syria, Yemen and Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula. The U.S. does not have any military members now serving in Iran.

Some of the countries that could likely be dropped from the list include Bahrain, where the Navy’s 5th Fleet is located, as well as Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Liberia, Haiti and several former Soviet republics.

The list has routinely evolved over many years, with countries added as they became more dangerous hotspots. And military leaders do periodic reviews of the list.

While the changes are based solely on the security review, the cuts also come as the Pentagon is under growing pressure to slash its budget, and as more than 650,000 civilians began taking the first of their 11 required days off without pay through the end of this fiscal year on Sept. 30.

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said earlier this week that the fiscal pressures and congressional gridlock have led to far more abrupt and steeper cuts than expected. He noted that if Congress does not find a way to avoid the automatic budget cuts known as sequestration, the department will have to find $52 billion in additional savings next year.

So far, the danger pay decision does not affect the tax-free status of service members’ pay when serving in those countries or on ships in the Gulf region.

Under existing Defense Department rules, military troops serving in as many as two dozen different nations as well as the Persian Gulf, Red Sea, Gulf of Oman, Arabian Sea and Gulf of Aden have been able to receive the imminent danger pay. Until early 2012, they received the full monthly amount — $225 at the time — for any complete or partial month they served in any of the qualifying areas.

Beginning Feb. 1, 2012, troops received pro-rated payments of $7.50 for each day they were on official duty in one of the areas.

The total cost has been about $500 million per year.

Officials also said the proposed changes do not affect hostile fire pay. Service members who are exposed to a hostile fire or hostile mine explosion event are eligible to receive a full monthly payment of $225. But they can’t receive both danger pay and hostile fire pay for the same month.

© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Source: NEWSmax.com

Use Your Stick.


And concerning the tithe of the herd, or of the flock, even of whatsoever passeth under the rod, the tenth shall be holy unto the Lord. —Leviticus 27:32

Exodus 14 tells the story of how Moses led the Israelites out of Egypt. They came to the Red Sea, the mountains were on either side and the Egyptians were pursuing. Moses cried out to God, “What are we going to do?”

God said, “What have I put in your hand?” When Moses replied, “Just a stick,” God responded by saying, “Use it!”

It was no ordinary stick that God had put in Moses’ hand. It was anointed. Anything anointed of God has miracle-working power.

Many of you are hemmed in with credit cards on one side, car payments on the other and the bank pursuing—but you have a stick. God says, “Use your stick. Sow the ten dollars of the one hundred dollars you made this week that I have sanctified for your deliverance from financial bondage.”

Use what you have for the Lord. It may not be much, but it will be enough. Little is much in His hands. Whatever the Lord has put into your hand, use it for Him.

Lord, I commit myself to using whatever
You give me for Your purposes and glory
in Jesus’ name. Amen.

 By ROD PARSLEY.

One Word Not in God’s Dictionary.


What sort of faith does God reward?

We all know that without faith it is impossible to please God (Hebrews 11:6). When does that mean in practical terms? A friend wrote me this week with some good insight:

“I have come to realize that God prizes and rewards and seeks outrageous, ridiculous, absurd faith. Praying and asking God for anything is an exercise of such faith. Moses, Abraham, Joseph, Daniel, Job, the 11 Disciples, had faith that was outrageous. They followed orders that were insane, humanly speaking. They prayed and trusted God for help in situations which were hopeless, humanly speaking.

“Think about it: raising your staff over the Red Sea to make it part so that the Israelites can pass thru on dry land. Or Joshua marching around the walls of Jericho. It’s crazy.

“As I was thinking of it, that is exactly the kind of faith we are called upon to exercise in forgiving those who have hurt us. Logically, it shouldn’t work. Praying and asking God to bless those who have hurt us is, from a human perspective, absurd. Praying and asking God to help us forgive someone who has hurt us is outrageous, humanly speaking. From a human perspective, it is crazy to trust someone you have never met/seen in person and who’s voice you have never heard in an audible way, to deal with those who hurt you. Forgiveness is crazy. It is the outworking of outrageous, ridiculous, absurd, insane faith. (That is one of the reasons why many people do not take forgiveness seriously, even within the church.) And yet, that is EXACTLY the kind of faith that God prizes and rewards: ridiculous, outrageous, absurd, insane, unrealistic faith.

“We as people have the word “realistic” in our dictionary; God does not.”

I especially like that last sentence. We are “realistic” and God is not. Don’t pray today for a “realistic” faith. Pray for a ridiculous, outrageous, absurd, insane, unrealistic faith. In other words, pray for faith like Abraham, Moses, Joshua, David and Daniel.

Would you like to stand out from the crowd today? Cut the word “realistic” out of your dictionary.

You never know what God will do when you stop limiting him to what you think he can do.

By Dr. Ray Pritchard

Author, Speaker, President of Keep Believing Ministries

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