Teach Us To Number Our Days (2nd Study)

(Psalm 90)

Moses starts this Psalm by saying, Lord, You have been our dwelling place and our refuge in all generations. A testimony he could seal in truth throughout the years he and his people walked through the wilderness, facing enemies of all kinds. He, unlikely other prophets, had a very close relationship with God, Who spoke to him face to face. God said of him, With Moses I speak mouth to mouth. Clearly and not in dark speeches; and he beholds the form of the Lord… (Num. 12:8). Forty years wandering in the desert was indeed plenty time for Moses to reflect upon life in its limitations. He experienced all kinds of perils to realize that it was by the grace of God, and not by his own effort that he survived them all. He watched many suffer God’s judgments and even death at their lack of faith and disobedience. Life seemed to Moses fragile and short and uncertain. His knowledge of human’s limitations brought an awareness of its short span. Life, is really just a breath away from death in its time frame on this earth.

Miracles at YAHSHUA’S Crucifixion

In the midst of chaos, YAHSHUA performed yet great miracles as He was letting go of His life to prove men that He was Whom He said He was. Embed by pains from His head to His toes, from His inner soul to His spirit, He, even though God, suffered as man in every sense of the word, for He was condemned as man by His Father, when He took upon Himself the sins of the world. However, He never stopped being God. Nature knew and reacted in the form of trembling. It was as if it could understand and perceive what was happening to the One Who had created it. The miracles that surrounded the atmosphere were vividly proclaiming to men that that Man was not an ordinary man, He was God! Nature could not be quiet about it.

First, the sun, the chief light of the day, decided it would not shine its Creator’s agony to sinful men. For the three hours YAHSHUA suffered His worst pain; it was as if God was hiding from the eyes of men the sufferings of His Son by turning the sun’s lights off. He had already suffered enough physical pain from the hands of sinful men. But His last agonies were hidden from the world, so that it would be a moment when they would stop mocking and making a spectacle of Him through the cruelty of their sinful nature. Three hours of darkness must have made men ponder about the meaning of it. Except for the Roman Centurion and his guards, nothing we read about men’s reactions that showed significant meaning toward knowledge of YAHSHUA’S divinity and their repentance.

The number three shone during the trials and crucifixion of our Lord. That meant that the “Three in One” all suffered the ordeal YAHSHUA suffered. He was crucified at nine o’clock in the morning; nine is 3X3. From twelve until three o’clock in the afternoon darkness ruled the land. Twelve is 3X4. On the third hour of darkness, YAHSHUA cried with a loud voice, expressing the worst pain He ever suffered in that ordeal- the separation from His Father, when He suffered hell for us. It affected the religious site of the Jewish nation when the curtain of the temple was torn in two opening the door for all to enter the presence of God, that is, those who would accept Him. Interesting thing is that YAHSHUA being God, even there on the cross was the one Who tore the curtain, as He took the position of our High Priest. The curtain of the temple was six feet long and thirty feet wide, with the thickness of the palm of a man’s hand. It was made from 72 squares woven from thick material. No man could ever tear it with bear hands. It was without a doubt the work of God. The most fascinating fact was that it happened at the time when YAHSHUA died and also when the priests were in the place of the Holy of Holies performing their priestly duty, facing the curtain. It was torn in two equal parts. It just happened right in front of their eyes. As a result, the Bible reports that great many priests accepted their Messiah. Acts 6:7 says: And the message of God kept on spreading, and the number of disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem; and a large number of the priests were obedient to the faith [in YAHSHUA as the Messiah, through whom is obtained eternal salvation in the kingdom of God].  YAHSHUA not only reconciled men to Himself, but also opened the door for them to enter into His presence at any time. That is a great honor given to men. Undeserved as we are, punishment should have been ours, not blessings. With His death, even when we were his enemies, He reconciled us to God (Himself) (Rom. 5:10a). When He tore the temple’s curtain, He gave us full freedom and confidence to enter into the [Holy of] Holies by the blood of YAHSHUA (Heb. 10:19). It happened by the power of His blood, not the blood of animals, which were being sacrificed at the same time.

Earth revolted when it witnessed the death of its Creator, sending shock waves radiating to its surface from underground as in an earthquake, splitting the rocks, creating panic in many people who did not understand the cause, especially those who had rejected Him and given Him up to be crucified. It even brought to life saints, who had died some time ago. The power of YAHSHUA’S life, even when physically dead, shocked the earth and it stirred up the dead saints to life. Where His presence is there will be life, no matter what. That was a powerful miracle. No one should ever have doubted the reason for it; no one should ever have doubted the meaning of it. We see here YAHSHUA’S power of resurrection, which will happen in the future at the time of the rapture of His church, when only those “in Christ” will come to life. Note that not all dead came to life in His death, only the saints; and not all will be brought to life in the first resurrection, only His bride. YAHSHUA, when facing the death of Lazarus, introduced Himself to Martha as the Resurrection and Life. He was and is the solution for every problem man has. He said, I am the Resurrection and the Life. Whoever believes in Me, although he may die, yet he shall live (John 11:25).

Another significant miracle that happened at the death of YAHSHUA was the conversion of the Roman Centurion and his guards. Interesting to note is that those Romans had no knowledge of Whom YAHSHUA was; YAHSHUA, when they were crucifying Him, said a prayer of forgiveness we must not forget to whom it was directed. It was directed to those soldiers who hammered the nails in His hands and feet, who speared His side, who carved His brains with a crown of thorns, who whipped Him to the point of breaking His body through the skin, muscles reaching the bone, causing His body to be out of joint. It was to these cruel and godless Romans to whom YAHSHUA’S prayer of forgiveness was offered. Ingrained in their culture and religion, they were lost without YAHSHUA’S prayer on their behalf. But because God so loved the world to the point of giving His only begotten Son, these Romans were part of the plan of salvation, even if they were the ones killing God’s Son. They well represented the “world” and that prayer was necessary to bring them in too. Matthew reports that when the Centurion and those who were with him keeping watch over YAHSHUA observed the earthquake and all that was happening, they were terribly frightened and filled with awe and said, truly this was God’s Son! What a proclamation coming from a pagan, godless mouth! No longer had that, now these men witnessing the miracles at the foot of the cross, believed YAHSHUA to be the Son of God. Salvation is a result of a confession that YAHSHUA is Lord; Paul said, For with the heart a person believes and so is justified, and with the mouth he confesses and confirms [his] salvation (Rom. 10:9a-10). When our Savior YAHSHUA went to the cross, He went with the purpose to save men from eternal death. He took our cross and with His shedding blood He washed all who wanted, clean, including the thief on the cross, who had acknowledged Him as Lord and to be an innocent man. After he defended YAHSHUA against the other thief, He then asked Him, Lord, remember me when You come in your kingly glory! And YAHSHUA answered him: Truly, I tell you today you shall be with Me in Paradise (Luke 23:40-43). This was a promise for a thief at the end of his life for having believed YAHSHUA, and for all of us who will receive Him.

Stay Here, Keep Awake and Keep Watch With Me

(Matthews 26:38-41)

My soul is very sad and deeply grieved so that I am almost dying of sorrow. Stay here and keep awake and keep watch with Me… all of you must keep awake and watch and pray, that you may not come into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak (Matthews 26:38,41b).

YAHSHUA, in His anguish at the Garden before He was arrested, took with Him Peter, James and John saying, Stay here, keep wake and watch with Me. Suffering as a man, YAHSHUA needed support in His darkest hour on earth. That was, without a doubt, His most difficult hour, as He expressed to His disciples: “My soul is very sad and deeply grieved so that I am almost dying of sorrow.”  That was His hour of decision. The tempter arrived at the garden at his “opportune time” when YAHSHUA was physically and emotionally weak. His betrayal was at hand by one of His disciples. His nation was going to hand Him to the Romans to be punished, the merciless Roman way. His nation, as a whole, had rejected Him; even one of His disciples was going to deny knowing Him. The ultimate rejection He experienced was on the cross. The hour had arrived when He had to face His enemies face to face- Jews and Gentiles, who would decide on the way He was to die. That was His dark hour. Although an angel came to comfort Him in the garden, nothing else was going to happen to free Him from His ordeal. It was that time!

The Passover Lamb of God

(John 1:29; 12:1-7)

Six days before the Passover Feast, YAHSHUA made a trip to Bethany to the home of Lazarus; six days before His death a supper was prepared for Him; Lazarus was at the table with Him, Martha served and Mary anointed Him for His burial, setting Him apart for His death as He represented the Passover sacrificial Lamb and in essence He was the true Lamb of God that takes the sins of the world (John 1:29). He was set apart four days before His death as it was commanded that the lamb for the sacrifice would be set apart on the tenth of the month, and be killed on the fourteenth, (four days after being set apart) Exodus 12:3,6.  YAHSHUA lived those last days focused on what was to happen in His Father’s plan to redeem mankind. Behold, the Lamb of God! John Baptist’s cry to call the nation of Israel to repentance and acceptance of the Lamb of God- YAHSHUA, Who had come to be the Passover Lamb. While many were busy getting ready for that very important Passover event, YAHSHUA was quietly fulfilling His role of Lamb of God, when Mary anointed Him, not knowing the meaning of her action. But He knew and defended her at the criticism of Judas, who later betrayed Him.  

Is God’s Mouth Muzzled Not To Speak To Us Today?

“My people perish for lack of knowledge.” These are words of profound and consequential meaning, as we read in Job 36: 12: But if they do not listen, they perish by the sword and die without knowledge. The rejection of knowledge is a dangerous attitude to have. For it is hearing, but not listening, hearing but not perceiving; hearing but not understanding; seeing but not discerning. It is being deaf and blind spiritually.  For God speaks not only once, but more than once, even though men do not regard it (Job 33:14). The spirit of unbelief is very predominant in the world today in spite of all the information being available in every avenue of life. Words found in the book of Job 33:15 seals the matter that men hear God’s voice in a dream, in a vision of the night, when deep sleep falls on men while slumbering upon the bed. Then He opens the ears of men and seals their instruction. The Prophet Daniel experienced dreams and visions and interpretations by angels. The entire chapter seven of the book of Daniel reveals the three visions he had and the interpretations of them. Those visions served to warn the world of yesterday and of today’s what were and what is going to happen in the future because our God desired and desires that none of us should perish.

A Lamb, A Shofar, A Lion in God’s Timeline

God’s time line is in no way our time line. He acts in the sphere of eternity, in His all-knowing, all seeing before even anything takes place, to the time when all begins. In fact, before there was time, He was. Hard for a limited human mind to comprehend such reality. Where there is no beginning and no end, it just floats around our mind, without settling in our understanding. But that is the way it is. For our God is not in the frame of our understanding, being Who He is. This is how the Apostle Paul describes Him: Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unfathomable are His judgments! And how untraceable are His ways! For who has known the mind of the Lord and who has understood His thoughts, or who has ever been His counselor? … For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be glory forever! Amen (Rom. 11:33-34, 36).

Goodness- The Glory of God

(Exodus 33:18-19)

The word goodness carries a strong connotation of its meaning. It is the goodness of our God that showers us with blessings. God’s creation in its varies aspects of life depend on His goodness to survive. Psalm 104 beautifully describes the goodness of God toward His creation: O Lord, how many and varied are You works! In wisdom have You made them all; the earth is full of Your riches and Your creatures, these all wait and are dependent upon You, that You may give them their food in due season. When You give it to them, they gather it up; You open Your hand and they are filled with good things. When You hide Your face, they are troubled and dismayed; when You take away their breath, they die and return to their dust. When You send forth Your Spirit and give them breath, they are created, and You replenish the face of the ground. May the glory of the Lord endure forever; may the Lord rejoice in His work (vs. 24,27-31). Bless the Lord, O my soul; and all that is within me, bless His holy name! Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits – Who forgives all your iniquities, Who heals all your diseases, Who redeems you live from the pit and corruption, Who beautifies, dignifies and crowns you with loving-kindness and tender mercy; Who satisfies your mouth with good so that your youth, renewed is like the eagle’s (Psalm 103:1-5).

The End of the Matter Is Fear God

(Ecclesiastes 12:13)

King Solomon was the wisest man who ever lived. God so blessed him because he did not ask for riches or anything else, but for wisdom. At the very beginning of his reign the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, Ask what I shall give you. Solomon (then) said, I am but a lad: I know not how to go out or come in. Your servant is in the midst of Your people whom You have chosen a great people who cannot be counted for multitude. So give You servant an understanding mind and a hearing heart to judge Your people, that I may discern between good and bad. For who is able to judge and rule this Your great people? It pleased the Lord that Solomon had asked this. God said to him, Because you have asked this and have not asked for long life or for riches, nor for the lives of your enemies, but have asked for yourself understanding to recognize what is just and right, behold, I have done as your asked. I have given you a wise, discerning mind, so that no one before you was your equal, nor shall any arise after you equal to you (I Kings 3: 5-12). God not only blessed him with wisdom but also with riches and honor. But something happened to Solomon in the course of his reign that caused him to forsake the Lord, His commandments and statutes. He grew proud and defiant. The Bible says that he [defiantly] loved many foreign women- the daughter of Pharaoh, women of the Moabites, Ammonites, Sidonians and Hittites. They were of the very nations of whom the Lord said to the Israelites, You shall not mingle with them, neither shall they mingle with you, for surely they will turn away your hearts after their gods, Yet Solomon clung to these in love (I Kings 11: 1-3). He embraced and made alliance with those nations through marriage; he abused his position of king by adopting the practice of having wives and concubines in numbers unheard of. Seven hundred wives, princesses, and three hundred concubines.  I suppose he practiced this idea of alliances to keep peace with the nations.

YAHSHUA, The Light of Mankind

(John 1:1-17)

In Yahshua was life, and the Life was the Light of men (verse 4). When Paul was on his way to persecute the believers, Yahshua came to him in a Light that flashed from heaven. That Light penetrated Paul’s inmost being and changed the direction of his life from persecutor to persecuted. At that moment he asked Him, “Who are You Lord”? I AM Yahshua, Whom you are persecuting, (He answered) (Acts 9:1-6).

YAHSHUA’S light penetrated not only into Paul’s physical eyes; it also penetrated into his soul – mind, will and emotion, where the source of his hatred against the believers, dwelled. The words spoken by Yahshua illuminated on all the darkness residing in Paul’s life; it removed the spiritual veil which had darkened his understanding of the truth for many years. Paul’s eyes were now opened to realize his spiritual condition. He no longer thought of him as a righteous man, but a wretched sinner. Yes, Paul experienced the effect of that Light and in the impact of its brilliance and splendor the seed of life was planted in him. At that Paul then asks the second question, “Lord, what do You desire me to do?” Powerless, blind and spiritually broken, Paul submitted himself to follow YAHSHUA with the same zeal he had for Judaism, if not greater, to become the greatest preacher of all times. Based on this experience later he told Timothy, YAHSHUA lives in unapproachable light, Whom no man has ever seen or can see (I Timothy 6:16). 

What Is Your Name?

(Genesis 27:18; 32:22-32)

We cannot count the many times we were asked this question; either verbally or in writing. A name identifies and defines a person. In biblical times Jewish’s names had meanings, in some cases as signs for God’s coming judgment, as it was the case of Isaiah’s children: Behold, I and the children whom the Lord has given me are signs and wonders in Israel from the Lord of host, Who dwell in Mount Zion (Isaiah 8:18). And I approached the prophetess, and when she conceived and borne a son, the Lord said to me, Call his name Maher-Shalalhfash-Baz, for before the child knows how to say My father or my mother, the riches of Damascus shall be carried away before the king of Assyria (8:3-4).  Through behavior – good or bad, through fame and many other historical ways, a person is writing his name in the pages of history. So, a person’s name is judged by what is known of him.  When we hear the name Judas, automatically we think of the one who betrayed YAHSHUA. Judas’ name carries a bad and unfavorable reputation in our minds that has lasted thousands of years. However, the name Judas means “praise.” Hard to personalize this name as betrayer. Judas, by the evil act of betraying the Son of God, gave his name the synonymous with traitor.  A name that carried such beautiful meaning in the past, has suffered deep scars since that act. Scars that will never be erased from the minds of people.