Today’s Devotional – November 20th (The Centerpiece of the Bible)

By admin On November 13th, 2013

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NOVEMBER 20TH

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2ND CORINTHIANS CHAPTER 3:

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THE SHIFTING OF THE

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CENTERPIECE OF THE BIBLE

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“ALL THINGS ARE FULL OF LABOR”

Ecclesiastes 1:8

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Worker_ant_carrying_leaf.jpg.

The Bible declares that all things are full of labor. And, with a little observation it’s easy to see that principle being carried out in nature. Just look at the ant, for example. In an ant colony, each day is filled with labor. “From the rising of the sun unto the going down of the same”, all the ants have one purpose in mind: to work together for the colony. The colony is the centerpiece of the ant’s existence. This is how God designed them.

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http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Honey_bee_on_a_dandelion,_Sandy,_Bedfordshire_(7002893894).jpg

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And like the ant, the honey bees too, work together toward one goal, the colony. The colony is the centerpiece of the bee’s existence. This is how God designed them.

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Honey bee on a dandelion, Sandy, Bedfordshire wikimedia commons Creative Commons 2.0 license.

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GOD’S KINGDOM IS FULL OF LABOR

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“Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God. Give none offence, neither to the Jews, nor to the Gentiles, nor to the church of God: Even as I please all men in all things, not seeking mine own profit, but the profit of many, that they may be savehttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:PaulT.jpgd.” 1st Corinthians 10:31-33

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In this above testimony, Paul presents an over-arching principle of the Christian life: to do everything to the glory of God! And then he finishes this little statement by saying he no longer sought after his own profit, but the profit of many, that they may be saved!

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Yes, God Himself, has a government in which all work together for a common purpose: to proclaim to all, the incredible love of God, as seen in the face of Jesus Christ.

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Paul the Apostle – Artist – Valentin de Boulogne or Nicolas Tournier – circa 1500s – Wikipedia – public domain

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ACCORDING TO GOD’S ETERNAL PURPOSE

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“To the intent that now unto the principalities and powers in heavenly [places] might be known by the http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Worker_ant_carrying_leaf.jpgchurch the manifold wisdom of God, According to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord:” Ephesians 3:10, 11

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This above passage reveals the Eternal Purpose of God: the mission of Jesus Christ, as He manifested the love of God to an on-looking universe. And more than this, Philippians reveals that it is God’s will that…

Confession of the Centurion - James Tissot - Brooklyn Museum - Creative Commons License

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“That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” Philippians 2:11

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Confession of the Centurion – James Tissot – Brooklyn Museum – Creative Commons License

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WHY TWO CENTERPIECES?

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Now having said all this, why does there seem to be two centerpieces in the Bible?

 

Why does the Old Testament focus so much on the Law, while the New Testament focuses on Jesus.

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:6tag_250316-124351.jpg.

In the third chapter of 2nd Corinthians is an explanation of just why there were seemingly two centerpieces in the Bible.

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So it might be well to spend a few moments trying to understand what this little chapter has to say on this subject…

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Tissot – Moses and the Ten Commandments – Wikipedia – US Public Dom.

Cross of Jesus Christ – Wikimedia – Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International license.

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THE LAW: THE CENTERPIECE of the OLD TESTAMENT

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http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Honey_bee_on_a_dandelion,_Sandy,_Bedfordshire_(7002893894).jpgWhen God began writing the Bible, He quickly established the focal-point of that book: The Law. And in particular, the Ten Commandments. And as God began to lead about the Children of Israel, He then directed them to focus on the Law, as seen in the Ten Commandments, but also in the Sanctuary Service, and in the many other precepts http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Tissot_Moses_and_the_Ten_Commandments.jpgfound in the Old Testament.

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The 2nd Epistle to the Corinthians points out this great and profound concept, that the Law, written on tables of stone, was the focal point of the Old Testament.

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Listen… “But if the ministration of death, written and engraven in stones, was glorious, so that the children of Israel could not stedfastly behold the face of Moses for the glory of his countenance; which [glory] was to be done away…But even unto this day, when Moses is read, the veil is upon their heart.” 2nd Corinthians 3:7

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Here was the focal-point of the Old Testament people of God: The Law. And it was glorious! But there was a veil upon their hearts, that prevented them from seeing the true glory of the Law: Jesus Christ!

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Tissot – Moses and the Ten Commandments – Wikipedia – US Public Dom.

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JESUS: THE CENTERPIECE of the NEW TESTAMENT

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http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Worker_ant_carrying_leaf.jpg

But now, in the New Testament, the focal point is on Jesus Christ, through the power of the Holy Spirit, who works in our hearts, and not merely on tables of stone. And while the Old Testament focused on the letter of the Law, Believers are now to be led by the spirit of the law, and not the letter.

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Listen again to 2nd Corinthians, Chapter 3… “But if the ministration of death (The Ten Commandments), written and engraven in stones, was glorious…But even unto this day, when Moses is read, the veil is upon their heart. Nevertheless when it shall turn to the Lord, the veil shall be taken away…

But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.” 2nd Corinthians 3:7, 15, 16, 18.

.http://pt.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ficheiro:Transfiguration_bloch.jpg

Now certainly these are profound words. And they need to be digested slowly and carefully. But basically these statements are saying this: while everything in the Old Testament seemed to bend toward the Law, yet in the New Testament, we see that all the Law & Prophets, as well as the entire Bible now bends toward Jesus Christ. Jesus is now the true focus of the entire Bible!

Transfiguration – Bloch – Wikimedia Commons – US Public Domain

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CHRIST: WHERE THE LAW WAS POINTING 

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http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Honey_bee_on_a_dandelion,_Sandy,_Bedfordshire_(7002893894).jpgSo just as the ants totally bend their efforts toward the colony, so too, the Old Testament bent itself toward the Law. And just like each ant, or each honey-bee, each precept of the Bible now totally focuses and http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:US_Navy_040327-N-1261P-058_Navy_Chaplain,_Lt._Marc_Massie_assigned_to_Naval_Mobile_Construction_Battalion_Seventy_Four_(NMCB-74)_studies_his_Bible_for_an_upcoming_service.jpgbends itself toward Jesus Christ.

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And even more than this, the New Testament Believer is to now see the great fulfillment of the Law, as he or she beholds more and more of the glory of Jesus Christ. And by so-doing, that Believer will become, more and more, imperceptibly changed into Christ’s glorious image, just as it is written…

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But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.” 2nd Corinthians 3:18.

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Chaplain reads Bible – Wikimedia – US Govt. Public Domain.

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TODAY’S PRAYER:

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“Lord, help me not to get side-tracked in my Bible study today. But help me to focus on Jesus, the true object and centerpiece of the Bible.”

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READ MORE

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To read further, click here… February 14th (By Beholding Jesus…Changed!)

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THE END

.picture - soldiers of the cross - armor up!

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TODAY’S FEATURED HEAVENLY SIGN

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HEAVENLY OBJECT LESSON

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“Then the moon shall be confounded, and the sun ashamed, when the LORD of hosts shall reign in mount Zion, and in Jerusalem, and before his ancients gloriously.” Isaiah 24:23

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When God created the Moon and the stars, He ordained them to “rule the night” (Gen. 1:16). The Moon, especially when it is full, can light your pathway through the night, as it reflects the light of the Sun.

.http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Um_moinho_dominando_a_ba%C3%ADa_%C3%A0_luz_lunar.jpg

So too, the Christian is to be a light to the world: to this sin-darkened world. But as the Moon must reflect the light of the Sun, in order to be a light to the world, so also must the Christian reflect the light of Jesus, to be a spiritual light to this planet in rebellion. Listen…

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“Ye are the light of the world…Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” Matt. 5:14-16

.This is a drawing of a winter-time total lunar eclipse, first published in Bilder- (Picture Atlas of the Stemenwelt) in 1888

However, during an eclipse, the Earth passes directly between the Sun and the Moon, preventing that sunlight from shining on the Moon’s face. This is an incredible object-lesson about when the child of God allows the world to come between him and his Lord. Like the eclipse, that person no longer reflects the light of Jesus, because his or her love of this dark world of sin has eclipsed the light from the “Sun of Righteousness” (see Malachi 4:2).

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And so, this is just one of the many poetic truths seen in the Moon. And this article will show some further metaphoric truths to this wonderful and mysterious object-lesson in the sky, known as the Moon. (For more on this subject of an eclipse, you may link to the article… “Lunar Eclipse & Spiritual Eclipse”)

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Dutch Painting: Um_moinho_dominando_a_baía_à_luz_lunar wikimedia US public domain

This is a drawing of a winter-time total lunar eclipse, first published in Bilder- (Picture Atlas of the Stemenwelt) in 1888

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READ MORE…

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To explore further, click here… “Lunar Eclipse & Spiritual Eclipse”

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TOMORROW: NOVEMBER 21ST

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20+ MINUTE AUDIO JEREMIAH STUDY

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YOU ARE ENCOURAGED TO BEGIN FOLLOWING THIS 650+ AUDIO BIBLE STUDY THROUGH THE BOOK OF JEREMIAH EACH DAY ON THIS DAILY DEVOTIONAL. 

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THIS IS STUDY #322 PRESENTED BY THE LATE HAROLD CAMPING OF FAMILY RADIO…

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Prophet Jeremiah – www.christianimagesource.com – Public Domain

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