Light and Dark- Exodus 10

Light and Dark– Exodus 10

Dark and light here are part of the plagues before Passover.  In Wonders that Plagued Egypt and Reflections on Judgement I cover some of the plagues but there is so much to learn and see.  In studying this time, I noticed that Moses was directed to confront Pharaoh early in the morning.  This darkness was special – it could be felt!  Ra, their sun god, had bowed before the God of Israel.  (I have been in dark places that set your nerves on edge, but I have never felt darkness.)  When Moses started asking for physical possessions I am sure Egypt was ready to give them anything to get rid of the People. 

Three– It stayed dark for three days.  These three days speak to the time Jesus was in the grave. I hope that I am not squeezing this to fit my ideas, but you need to think before these days fit into the tomb. Israel was in the light, Egypt was in darkness. Jesus was in His glorified body walking through hell getting the keys back, the disciples were in the “dark” about what really happened to Jesus! 

End and Start – There are several things that are happening here, so there are multiple endings and starts.  I see this as God ending His “playing nice” with Pharaoh. I think the people of Egypt had had enough and wanted the People gone.  What started was God’s direct attack on Pharaoh and his son.  Ra was the sun god and major deity for Egypt, and the pharaoh was his son and physical form on earth.  It is also the second time (? – the plague of gnats 8: 16) that God did not tell Moses to go to Pharaoh to warn him of what was coming.  Pharaoh had to call for Moses, then he was warned of the last plague. (Khepri was the gnat god and the god of creation, moving the sun, and rebirth.)  Slavery was ending and freedom about to begin.  Worshipping Egypt ended and worshipping Jehovah was beginning.

FURTHER THOUGHT– What gods do you need to leave in the dark so you can live, better, in the light of Jesus.

John 7 – Jesus’ Timetable

John 7

Sometimes when you are studying one thing something else catches your attention, this is one of those things – John 7.  It is not part of the Passover to Pentecost time period but comes several months after Shavuot or Pentecost.   All of the crops are in, and this is an important event for the Jews that commemorates the forty years of the Exodus.  It is one of three Feasts that everyone was to go to Jerusalem and celebrate.

Part of the reason John would put this in his Book (v. 1 – 5) is to show the change in Jesus’ earthly family after the Resurrection, they were in the Upper Room praying with the rest of the disciples instead of doubting.  You need to remember that Jesus would still have a victory ride into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday, so His time was not ready.  Jesus was not going to be pushed into doing things out of the timing of the Father.

In verse fourteen, of chapter 7, “halfway” into the Feast would have been the fourth day and was between two sacred assemblies.  There were specific offerings for each day see (Numbers 29: 12 – 40).  John 7: 37 places the rest of the chapter on the last day, but all of the way to chapter 10: 21 seems to be in this general time period.  If John 8:1 is correct it may have occurred the next day after the Feast.

John 10: 21 – 42 is the Feast of Dedication or Hanukkah which is in December, so there is a time gap.  But one thing that stands out in these three chapters is the number of times they were going to apprehend Jesus or stone Him, remember “His time had not yet come.”  Much of this rage is because of miracles, challenging their practices, and claiming to be the Son of God, the Messiah.  THE important thing that Jesus stated in most of these conversations and is very important for us today is who gets the glory and the credit for the miracles.  Jesus gave the glory to the Father!

I realize that Jesus is His name and that Christ is a title; so, there are times when one should be used over the other.  It just seems that too many preachers forget to use the name, Jesus. Paul in his writings will use the terms Jesus Christ and Christ Jesus; there is a subtle difference here that our society seems to forget.  Jesus Christ is “man-God” while Christ Jesus is “God-man.” (Sorry, I forget where I first read this; it may have been in Vine’s Dictionary.)  If someone is not/can not use the name Jesus, properly, I suggest you RUN.  It is amazing how many people use the name of Jesus as a point of authority when cursing but do not believe in Him.

Passover to Pentecost – Lord of the Sabbath

Lord of the Sabbath

In Matthew 12:8, Mark 2: 28, and Luke 6:5 is the story of the disciples harvesting and eating grain on the Sabbath.  Jesus’ replied to those complaining, “The Son of man is Lord of the Sabbath.”  Then not much more is said about this passage/idea. In John’s story of the crucifixion that statement is made very clear!

John’s Gospel has the most references to Passover, especially the three that Jesus spent with His disciples, but the last one, John 12 -20, will be our focus for this blog.

  • John 12: 1 timestamps the action as “six days before Passover.” This is when Mary anointed Jesus’ feet.
  • John 13: 1 is “just before Passover” and it would have been the Thursday of that week.Jesus sends Peter and John off to prepare for the eating of the Passover meal.  But Thursday is before what the Jews would call the “Day of Preparation”, when they would kill the Lamb and paint the doorframe.
  • John 18: 28 is early on Friday morning the “Day of Preparation” and the Jews are trying to stay “Clean” so they can eat the Passover.
  • John 19: 14, 31, and 42 again mentions the “Day of Preparation.” Christians now call this Good Friday.  This is when the Jews would have killed the lambs and is when Jesus died.
  • John 20: 1 is “early on the first day of the week.” Christians call this Easter!

So why does this make Jesus Lord of the Sabbath?  Is our communion really the same as the Passover sharing of wine and bread?  Is Easter and Passover the same thing?

I will answer these questions this way: Jesus and the disciples broke tradition and ate the “Passover Meal” and shared communion twenty-four hours to soon. So even though these things happen around Passover they did not happen ON Passover!  Jesus did something new but He had to so that He could fulfill the requirementsof Passover.  It is probable that He died just as the lambs were being killed in the Temple for the Passover meal.

I see this as Jesus doing what had to be done to fulfill all things of the Law!  I am not sure that for us it should cause a major change in traditions, but it does show that Jesus is Lord over the Sabbath and all of our holidays.

SECOND THOUGHT – Did the disciples understand what was happening when they ate early?  If they did were they questioning Jesus as to why?

pic : http://clipart.christiansunite.com/1395312061/Communion Clipart/Communion005.jpg

Things That Happen With † = ♥

While having a morning break in our local Mickey D’s a man, in a plumber’s uniform, stopped and said, “After Jesus put that guy’s ear back on in the Garden how could you not believe!”

Surprised at his question, I added, “Remember, that was after everyone picked themselves up off of the ground when Jesus spoke.” We traded several other ideas and said good-bye. All of this started because I was wearing a † = ♥ shirt.

When a GODportunity like that occurs, it tends to lift you from your earthly thoughts and sets your mind on things above.  My two thoughts were:

  1. Did that servant join with the crowd calling for Jesus’ death?
  2. How was it that there were only two people who saw Jesus as the Son of God on Good Friday? The thief on the cross and the Roman soldier.

My thought on #1 is, NO!  He may have been there but a touch from Jesus would have changed him.  It would be nice to know his story.

The thief was a Divine Appointment.  Jesus was doing His work of glorifying the Father right to the very end of His earthly life.  This would also set an example for the Christians who were to die at the hands of the Romans many years after death.

The battle-harden centurion knew Jesus was different because of how He died.  No curses, no fighting with the guards, no blaming everyone else, no crying how unfair it was, just Jesus speaking words of comfort to His friends and being in control of Himself.  He recognized the darkened skies had to be from God as a show of His disapproval!  I like to believe that he was the centurion who had his servant healed at Jesus’ command.  And that he would have a visit from Peter, after all of these events, and receive the Holy Spirit!

Two other thoughts about this day:

  1. Were the people who came out of the tombs among the three thousand on the day of Pentecost?

2. Was it grief, fear, or a limited vision of Jesus that blinded the disciples from seeing Jesus as the thief and soldier saw Him that day?

Add your thoughts and questions!

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Passover to Pentecost – Thomas

Passover to Pentecost – Thomas         Week 3 Day 6

We have seen the Lord. John 20:25 (NIV)

Thomas the future apostle to India was not at Jesus’ first visitation at the beginning of the Feast of Unleavened Bread.  His story is set at the end of the Feast and would be the eighth day (the number of new beginnings).  In the first Passover the Israelites were out of Egypt on the other side of the Red Sea partying.   He, in true form of the other disciples refused to believe words that sounded like nonsense.  I hope he was with his family for the beginning of the Feast of Unleavened Bread but the fact is that he had left the group during a time when you might have expected everyone to be together.  So Jesus shows Himself again (during the meal closing the Feast that celebrates His sinless life) proclaims “Peace” and sets about to restore a prodigal son and chosen leader.  His doubts and those of the other disciples could be linked with all of the complaining and testing the Israelites did in the first fifty days.   It must be noted here that they still have not left for Galilee.

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