And He said, “Do not lay your hand on the lad, or do anything to him; for now I know that you fear God, since you have not withheld your son, your only son, from Me.”
The Hebrew word picture for withheld is: inner room threshing (what we might call soul searching).
In order to be willing to offer up Isaac (the child of God's promise) Abraham had to experience some "inner room threshing".
If we are to discern between God's good (decree/statute) and inferior good (our desire for lifestyle) we must be willing to submit to "inner room threshing". It is here that the nourishing grain of God's good is separated from the chaff of our inferior good.
So Lot went out and spoke to his sons-in-law, who had married his daughters, and said, “Get up, get out of this place; for the LORD will destroy this city!” But to his sons-in-law he seemed to be joking.
There are two images in the Hebrew word picture for joking.
The first is that of a hooked man or woman being led by desire. Like cattle being led by a nose ring.
The second is that of a decree or statute.
God had decreed that Sodom would be destroyed, yet when Lot repeats God's decree to his sons-in-law they act as if he is joking.
Something in these men was pulling them towards the lifestyle of the city and thus away from the decree of God regarding the city.
The name Sodom means burning.
Our societies are fuelled by burning desires, whilst the Joker (satan) laughs.
Yet God's desire is that we step into the protection of His decree and thus be delivered out of the burning destruction that will result from our misdirected desires.
I believe 2019 will be a year in which we must learn to discern between God's good (decree/statute) and inferior good (our desire for lifestyle).
The Hebrew word picture meaning for "Son" is: the life of the family.
"Born" means hand of authority on the door.
The Hebrew word picture meaning for "given" is Life, covenant life.
Yeshua's birth (and death) gave Him the authority to open the way for us to experience and enjoy the covenant life of God's family.
In the midst of the celebrations, let us take time to renew covenant with the one who was born to die that we might have life.
For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.
What does the backside of the tapestry of your life look like?
Mine looks pretty messy!!
But as I reflect on scripture I'm encouraged by the fact that the backside of Moses life was messy (murderer), the backside of Jacob"s life was messy (liar/deceiver), the backside of Peter's life was messy (impulsive, deserter) and then there is David (adulterer, murderer).
Were Moses, Jacob, Peter and David examples of God's workmanship?
David was described as a man after God's own heart.
Perhaps it is simply a matter of learning how to flip over the tapestry of life and see what God's workmanship actually looks like.
1 John 2:16
For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world.
The above Scripture describes what my life looks like when I am trusting in myself.
All my motives and thought processes become driven by: the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life.
The Hebrew word picture meaning behind lust is: "it binds you to itself".
It is through this lens that I come to understand that my lusts are imprisoning me and tempting me to live outside the protection of God's grace.
2 Corinthians 1:9
Yes, we had the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves but in God who raises the dead,
If you wanted to summarise the fall of mankind there is no better summary than these words: trust in ourselves.
You will recall that the Hebrew word picture for trust is: inside the fence. We know from our studies around this word that the fence is the blood sacrifice of Yeshua.
So, the question is: what does this fence look like when we trust in ourselves?
Trust in ourselves is actually the enemies counterfeit of living inside the blood sacrifice of Yeshua.
The palings that make up the fence of trust in ourselves are:
To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:
From a Hebrew perspective glory is all about weightiness or heaviness.
The idea of heaviness is also linked to making an impression.
For instance, in ancient times kings and queens endowed themselves with the finest clothes and jewelry with the intention of impressing their subjects.
When Christ is in you He is daily leaving the impression of His footprints in your life.
Consequently, as we walk out relationship with others, on a daily basis, we are leaving an impression on their lives.
The desire of my heart is that the impression I leave on the lives of others reflects that glorious impression that Christ has made upon me.
The LORD is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation (Yeshua), and my high tower.
From the top of Castle Rock, which is the top of Edinburgh Castle, you can see a long, long way in every direction.
It is no surprise then that the word picture meaning for "rock" in Hebrew is: support that controls your seeing and understanding.
The word picture meaning for "tower" is: chaos destroyed to benefit the household".
Maybe these are the images Yeshua (Jesus) had in mind when He said these words:
“Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock."
The LORD is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower.
Recently my wife (Jenny) and I were blessed in fulfilling a 30 year dream to travel in Europe, the UK and Ireland.
One of the many highlights for me was visiting Edinburgh Castle which sits atop Castle Rock.
The sheer rock face that surrounds much of the castle is 80 metres high. In its 1100 year history this castle has survived 26 sieges and our guide informed us it had never been overtaken.
What impacted me about this living history was its connection to the Hebrew definition of the word rock used in Psalm 18. Rock here literally means crag or cliff.
Be assured the Lord is your Castle Rock, His defences have not been and never will be penetrated.