by Christina Farris
1 A Psalm of David. The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit thou at my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool.
2 The LORD shall send the rod of thy strength out of Zion: rule thou in the midst of thine enemies.
3 Thy people shall be willing in the day of thy power, in the beauties of holiness from the womb of the morning: thou hast the dew of thy youth.
4 The LORD hath sworn, and will not repent, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek.
5 The Lord at thy right hand shall strike through kings in the day of his wrath.
6 He shall judge among the heathen, he shall fill the places with the dead bodies; he shall wound the heads over many countries.
7 He shall drink of the brook in the way: therefore shall he lift up the head. Yesterday, I had not thought much about the seriousness of recent political events, nor cared to think beyond all I even witnessed myself and what others witness, that seen more then I. Right now even my emotions are raw and I wonder about fairness in the court in Washington, with and without evidence presented. I wonder how some religious leaders denial of current events, saying they do not understand at all what happened, and I like how could you have missed it. If nothing else the isolation of Cov 19 made more people aware of events then ever before, or at least those that want to be informed. What is my point this morning. Well we are not in Mark this morning, for one reason to back up on "the Lord said to my Lord, Sit Thou at my right hand, until I make thine enemies a footstool." in the first verse and talking in connection to the ending of Mark 12 in yesterday lesson.
In Israel the knowledge of the Messiah is coming was clear but was the type of Messiah clear. Perhaps here where it says He would be a Priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek. Someone before and someone after, the first and the last but not the first. God came reigning on the earth as Jehovah and even walked among the people. He spoke to Abraham, and Abraham paid tithes to Priest Melchizedek, yet we think of this priest as being someone other then God Jehovah, but perhaps understanding should be he was part of the royal priesthood of God. Many points are running through my head this morning when reading this Psalms, but God did walk this earth and talk to his people. Christ was of the same order of Melchisedek but he was also the first and the last after the resurrection of the new Priesthood. A new order, or a new covenant but never a new way, faith never changed when it came to righteousness. Yet the sacrifical law changed with the sacrifice of Christ, the law of sacrifice meaning only one sacrifice for sin. No one else can pay your sin debt to God the Father but Jesus. Many may suffer for one's sin, but no one's life can pay for yours to live eternally, but Jesus. Jesus is the everlasting hope.
The continual scripture study section, I have posted the story of Peter in chains, James the brother of John had been killed with a sword and with the pleasure it brought the Jewish people King Herod would continue to imprison and kill Christians. The radical racist issues of the sixties and seventies only explains the radical movements of today of different groups warring with each other over issues that need to be asked is the struggle today the same. In the Christian world is the struggles of persecution still the same, and why and how can it be, if any issue arise change in our world. With recent events in our own nation today, of Black lives matter, and President Trump radical supports to storm the House of Representatives and more. Bluefield College in Virinia basketball team decides to bow to the National Anthem instead of standing as called on by our nation when this anthem is performed is causing the team to forfeit one game. I sitting there thinking are we in the stone ages of our land to where talks, free speech can not be exercised with accordance to rules traditions of peace between all unique people, and harmony to remain peace while discussion of disagreement occur. Then I think how can it, because if you have opposition because of remaining inside with someone to long how long can arguments of captivity be controlled before an explosion occurs. I realize when the emergency state our nation caused all being force indoors and not working. Then to go back to work and feel almost enslaved once more until that pay check is placed in one's hand, was almost a time of either unity or war with those who lived with others.
Peter finds himself in chains because he is a Christian and for no other reason, an angel of Lord opens his cell door and leads him out to the main road, to where he can decide where he goes for the rest of the night. Only to have to beat the door down, because the maid had trouble believing in the impossibility of him standing at the door.
The impossible events of our times are real, but the reality is still clear God has a door of safety that he opens to those he got a job and a task to yet do. The doors of escape just at the moment of when one will be going to one's death only to find a door of life. I looked at the nation and wonder can peace of all lives matter despite disagreements happen, can all our liberty be a waste if we can not grasp all lives matter to God to Christ, to our risen Lord. God's ability to plan escape as well as a resurrection from the grave in human flesh, transformed into eternal body meant for heaven to life eternal. Christ died and rose again, but his body was not just human flesh, it had been changed to eternal glory of the resurrection for heavenly purpose.
Christ died for all people's sin, but the condition of receiving the gift is belief. Now with this in mind, the world of man begins to segregate people of race, people of religion and people in general. I went into a store the other day that sold rabbits. The prettiest little black bunny with a white spotted tummy was the cutest little bunny in the cage. No I did not take it home, as hubby pointed out my grey cat mongo would probably kill it. Not because he did not like the rabbit, he would not understand he could not be rough with it. Now our human desire to just pick and choose who survives and who dies is often seen in the lives of true bigotry. What I mean no one showing hatred hopes for people to live only people to be destroyed. It like those against people that are disabled or radical racist groups with the agenda of hate, they want fairness for their people but their language is only hate by segregation of race and that agenda only instead of seeing all lives matter and all lives need hope. My husband thought that rabbit had more hope in the cage then going home with me, because of my cat.
God wanted to use Peter by letting him out of the cage, to demonstrate his protection, because one had already died after Christ death, and Christ had died and been resurrected and the one that died had not been resurrected. Point being is there hope with seeing one leader rise again only for another brother of faith loose his whole life and not live to tell it on earth again, until the judgment of Christ return.
God declares persecution going to come and yet we fail to see persecution comes to all groups of people for many reasons. What can we learn from the persecuted church, there ability to be pacifist and continue doing what they know to do with demonstrating love, patience, faith, and hope. Why does love, patience, faith and hope work, not just because of the author of it is God, but the compassion of another even to the enemy weighs more then hatred. Love out weighs hate. Christ death would be for love, because God could of remove the consequences from Jesus, instead he went through his fate only to rise again in proof of his Father's love. He did not remain in the pit of despair and sin. Man's punishment short lived, God's love enduring through it all.
What is my point this morning, when we choose our fight, make sure it God's way, and way of love and not hate. Make sure the way we follow is about truth and justice. Faith outways our rage and anger for a day, His love out weighs the mistake of human control, anger, persecution, bigotry and consequence of evil of others. Despite the law of man as consequnces of injustice of God's law, God's laws of faith will abide, when man's law fails.
Think for a moment the emotions of Peter in jail, the emotion of think he going to his cross and the door of cell opening for angel to lead him out to road of hope. He only going to see friends long enough to say I am safely out of my cell. It not time for my cross. Yet Peter one day would hang upside in the city of Roman for preaching the Gospel, with the option to escape, but Jesus reminds Peter of the eternal hope and Peter walks back to Rome and his hung upside down on his cross to die a mayrters death. The pathway open at the minum of twice for Peter. One for narrow escape, not ready for the end result, and now the second ready for the final curtain call of faith. Peter story of mayrterism can be found in a book about Christian history of mayrters, no it not in Bible that we read.In truth I can not remember the name of book but it handme down of faith, and not ashame to say it, because faith must be handed down to know the hope that faith can only bring. To understand the faith to trust that the cross we bear, in our final hour on earth is not the end of our life.
Next time you persecuted, your people are persecuted, and lives of others around seem to be shouting persecution, abuse, ask yourself, where is your faith, your love for all these people. Show God's love for these people that seem to be under attack, love those that seem to have the enemy beating them, because God wants his mercy known. God's wants people to know when the final curtain call of faith comes, that the enemy will be put under his feet forever more.
Dear Heavenly Father, you are King of Kings and Lord of Lords, we live to die, and die to live, and yet we understand not the cross Jesus bore as he died by the rules of man and the rules of your love, to rise again. Enable the world to be moved by compassion of love and not the rules of man, more often then not, in Jesus precious name, Amen.
Continual Scripture Study:Acts 12:1-25 KJV
1 Now about that time Herod the king stretched forth his hands to vex certain of the church.
2 And he killed James the brother of John with the sword.
3 And because he saw it pleased the Jews, he proceeded further to take Peter also. (Then were the days of unleavened bread.)
4 And when he had apprehended him, he put him in prison, and delivered him to four quaternions of soldiers to keep him; intending after Easter to bring him forth to the people.
5 Peter therefore was kept in prison: but prayer was made without ceasing of the church unto God for him.
6 And when Herod would have brought him forth, the same night Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains: and the keepers before the door kept the prison.
7 And, behold, the angel of the Lord came upon him, and a light shined in the prison: and he smote Peter on the side, and raised him up, saying, Arise up quickly. And his chains fell off from his hands.
8 And the angel said unto him, Gird thyself, and bind on thy sandals. And so he did. And he saith unto him, Cast thy garment about thee, and follow me.
9 And he went out, and followed him; and wist not that it was true which was done by the angel; but thought he saw a vision.
10 When they were past the first and the second ward, they came unto the iron gate that leadeth unto the city; which opened to them of his own accord: and they went out, and passed on through one street; and forthwith the angel departed from him.
11 And when Peter was come to himself, he said, Now I know of a surety, that the Lord hath sent his angel, and hath delivered me out of the hand of Herod, and from all the expectation of the people of the Jews.
12 And when he had considered the thing, he came to the house of Mary the mother of John, whose surname was Mark; where many were gathered together praying.
13 And as Peter knocked at the door of the gate, a damsel came to hearken, named Rhoda.
14 And when she knew Peter's voice, she opened not the gate for gladness, but ran in, and told how Peter stood before the gate.
15 And they said unto her, Thou art mad. But she constantly affirmed that it was even so. Then said they, It is his angel.
16 But Peter continued knocking: and when they had opened the door, and saw him, they were astonished.
17 But he, beckoning unto them with the hand to hold their peace, declared unto them how the Lord had brought him out of the prison. And he said, Go shew these things unto James, and to the brethren. And he departed, and went into another place.
18 Now as soon as it was day, there was no small stir among the soldiers, what was become of Peter.
19 And when Herod had sought for him, and found him not, he examined the keepers, and commanded that they should be put to death. And he went down from Judaea to Caesarea, and there abode.
20 And Herod was highly displeased with them of Tyre and Sidon: but they came with one accord to him, and, having made Blastus the king's chamberlain their friend, desired peace; because their country was nourished by the king's country.
21 And upon a set day Herod, arrayed in royal apparel, sat upon his throne, and made an oration unto them.
22 And the people gave a shout, saying, It is the voice of a god, and not of a man.
23 And immediately the angel of the Lord smote him, because he gave not God the glory: and he was eaten of worms, and gave up the ghost.
24 But the word of God grew and multiplied.
25 And Barnabas and Saul returned from Jerusalem, when they had fulfilled their ministry, and took with them John, whose surname was Mark.