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Monday, April 27, 2015

Jesus Paid It All (Leviticus 6)

Welcome, friends, to Week 2 in the book of Leviticus! Last week was amazing, wasn't it?!! I can't wait to dig into Chapters 6-10 of Leviticus with you this week. So let's get started!

Jesus Lamb of God

Jesus paid it all for us my friends! His perfect and sinless life was the final atonement that paid a debt we could never pay. This week as we read more about the Guilt, Fellowship, Burnt, Grain, and Sin Offerings we will see a foreshadowing of Jesus Christ through it all. It truly is a beautiful picture of the finished work of Christ on the cross! 

We will also be reading about the ordination of Aaron and his sons, the beginning of their priestly ministry, and sadly we'll also read about the death of Nadab and Abihu.

Here's our reading plan for this week:

Leviticus Reading Plan

Here is my SOAK today. I would love to hear your thoughts about Chapter 6 in the comments below so please feel free to share.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Scripture: Leviticus 6

Verses 1-7 discuss the third type of sin requiring a Guilt Offering – trespassing against a neighbor’s property and rights. In addition to bringing their Guilt Offering to the priest, the offender also had to make restitution in full, plus add a fifth of the value to it, and give it all to the owner on the day they presented their Guilt Offering. The other two types of Guilt Offering were discussed in Chapter 5 and they were misuse of the Holy things of the Lord and sins committed unintentionally that involve things forbidden in the Lord’s commands.

The Burnt Offering regulations are given in verse 8-13. The priests are instructed in verse 9 and 12 to keep the fire burning as a reminder of God’s continual presence and the need for continual atonement for the people’s sins. Jesus Christ offered the final Burnt Offering with His sinless, perfect body. Being wholly consecrated to God, He suffered death for our sins that He willingly took upon Himself, bringing about death to sin for all believers (Romans 6:2-7).

The Grain Offering of verse 14 represented the fruits of obedience from the offerer. It foreshadowed the perfect obedience of Jesus Christ as He offered His life in thanksgiving to God.

Verses 19-23 are the first mention of the Priest’s Grain Offering that they had to bring on the days in which they were anointed. Their Grain Offerings had to be offered daily whereas Christ offered Himself “once and for all” (Hebrews 7:27).

Verses 24-30 go into detail about the regulations of the Sin Offering. Christ offered the final Sin Offering with His perfect, sinless life.

We continue to see the person and work of Jesus Christ foreshadowed in this chapter. These sacrifices had to be offered continually because it would only be through the sinless blood of Jesus Christ that the final sacrifice would be offered once and for all (Hebrews 7:27). It would only be through His blood that believers would be cleansed from sin (1 John 1:7). Jesus is our High Priest (Hebrews 8:1), risen and glorified, our Savior, making intercession for us at the throne of God (Romans 8:34).

Just like the nation of Israel had to keep from anything that was unclean and defiling, we as believers are told in 2 Corinthians 7:1 to “… cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.” Considering all that Jesus went through for us, this surely is our “reasonable act of worship” (Romans 12:1). 

Heavenly Father, I thank You for the gift of Your Son, Jesus Christ. When I think about all that He endured for me and for the rest of the world, my heart is overcome with love and thanksgiving for His sacrifice that paid the price for all of our sins. Thank You, Jesus, for making intercession for me at the throne of God. Thank You, for Your blood that has been applied to my life and restored my broken relationship with my Father. I pray for Your grace to move through me and empower me to live the holy life that You call me to live. In Your powerful and life-changing name I pray. Amen!

Thanks for reading through the book of Leviticus with me and the Good Morning Girls! Please remember to share your thoughts in the comments below!

Walking in His Grace, 

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Finding Love in Leviticus

Congratulations, friends! We have reached the end of Week 1 in the book of Leviticus. Finding love in Leviticus is something that I thought I would never experience. But here's why I have a new excitement about and appreciation for the book Leviticus...

It points to the greatest love story ever told about the Greatest Love of the world...Jesus Christ!


Leviticus points to the love of Jesus

Finding Love in Leviticus - Jesus - has drawn me into the chapters about ceremonial and civil laws and digging into commentaries to find out how each relates and points to the sinless life of Jesus. He was sacrificed so that we could have forgiveness for our sins and cleansing through His shed blood. We can receive this forgiveness and cleansing for our sins when we believe in and stand on His finished work on the cross. If you have not accepted Jesus into your heart and life, I would love to talk more with you about how you can come to know Him as your personal Savior! Simply leave me your email in the comments below and I will contact you.

I hope you'll join me for Week 2 in Leviticus! Be sure to check back here at Grace-Filled-Moments throughout the week for more Blogging Through the Bible posts about my time in Leviticus.

Here is our reading plan for Week 2 that begins on Monday, April 27:

Leviticus Reading Plan

I hope you'll read along with me as we continue our walk through the book of Leviticus with the Good Morning Girls!

Walking in His Grace, 

Blogging Through the Bible with Good Morning Girls

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Growing a Garden of Prayer

Growing a garden of prayer in your life is a beautiful and lasting way to commune with God. It's not about spouting off a list of things you'd like to have God give you, but rather a way to align your heart with the heart of God.

Prayer Life

Just like anything else in our Christian walk, this is an important lesson we have to learn as we continue to walk faithfully with God.

One of the best ways to ensure that you are praying in the will of God for your life is to pray God's Word back to Him. There are many promises contained in the Bible that we can stand on as children of God. Just like the design I create for my raised garden bed each Spring before I plant my seeds, I have the design necessary for my prayer life right in the pages of the Holy Bible.

Growing a garden of prayer requires that I prepare my heart each time I enter into my prayer closet. Today I'm over at Worshipful Living sharing about cultivating a heart for prayer. Please join me there now.

Walking in His Grace, 

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Don't Lose Your Saltiness! (Leviticus 2)

In the past 5 months, I've had to cut a lot of salt from my daily intake due to my problems with high blood pressure. My doctor insisted that I lower my salt intake so I've made changes to the items I buy at the grocery store and how I cook at home. I enjoy cooking anyway, so I'm having fun cooking with fresh ingredients including fresh vegetables.

Salt in a Christian's Life

Today in Leviticus chapter 2, I was reminded about the goodness of salt in a Christian's life. Yes, salt can be good in our lives as disciples of Jesus! Don't lose your saltiness while you walk the path God has called you to in this life.

"You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot." -Matthew 5:13 NIV

As disciples of Jesus, we are the salt of this earth. What does this mean?

Well, let's look at 4 characteristics of salt and then apply those to our lives as disciples of Jesus.

4 Characteristics of Salt and What These Mean to Our Christian Life

  1. Salt can melt ice.
  2. Salt makes you thirsty.
  3. Salt preserves food.
  4. Salt is pure.

In Leviticus chapter 2, God instructed that salt was to be included with the grain offering that was brought as a sacrifice to the tabernacle altar. The grain offering points to Jesus, the Bread of Life (John 6:32). The fact that salt had to be included with the grain offering points to the pure life of Jesus Christ. When I walk in fellowship with Jesus, feasting on His Word, learning and growing from the pure life that He lived while He walked this earth, I add spiritual saltiness to my life that is needed to reach others for Christ.

When we walk in close fellowship with Jesus by reading daily in His Word and by communing with Him in prayer, we become salty to a world that is rotting with sin. We can help lead others to the Bread of Life so they can preserve their life with the eternal life available through the shed blood of Jesus.

When we love as Jesus loved, our saltiness melts harden hearts that become receptive to the Good News of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

When we let our saltiness guide the way we live our lives, we make others thirsty for the joy and freedom in Christ that we experience.

Another ingredient that was required to be poured on or mixed in with the grain offering was oil which was a picture of the Holy Spirit. Friends, we have the Holy Spirit living inside of us as disciples of Jesus. It is through the power of the Holy Spirit that we are able to live set apart from the world, living the salty lives that Jesus calls us to live in Matthew 5:13.

Don't lose your saltiness, friends! Keep yourself in the Word, our daily bread from Jesus. Keep yourself in fellowship with God through prayer and pray His Word back to Him for the needs in your life. Pray that the saltiness of your life will create a hunger and a thirst in the lives of those around you who have yet to call on the name of Jesus for forgiveness of their sins. This is the prayer of my life and I hope it is your prayer as well, sweet friend!

I'm Blogging through the Bible with the Good Morning Girls. You can find all my posts in this series listed under the Blogging Through the Bible tab at the top of this page.

We are in the book of Leviticus for the next six weeks. I hope you'll join us as we learn to be set apart for God. Feel free to share in the comments below what you are learning from our time in Leviticus!

Leviticus Reading Plan

Here is my SOAK for today:

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Scripture: Leviticus 2

Observations: Chapter 2 details the grain offering, the 2nd of the 5 sacrifices that the Israelites could take to the tabernacle altar in Leviticus. It was not presented alone, but with one of the sacrifices that involved the s
hedding of blood.

The grain offering could be presented in one of these 5 forms: fine flour, oven baked cakes, cakes baked in a pan, cakes baked on a griddle, or roasted heads of new grain that were crushed. Only a portion of this grain offering was used by the officiating priest. This portion was consumed in the fire, and the rest of the grain offering went to the priests to be eaten by them.

The incense used in the burning of the memorial portion of the grain offering was frankincense. The frankincense represented prayer (Ps. 141:2; Rev. 5:8) and is a reminder of the petition in the Lord’s Prayer, “give us this day our daily bread” (Matt. 6:11). 

The flour represents his perfect character in word and in the way He lived his life. Leaven was associated with sin and therefore could not be included in the grain offering because Jesus was without sin. The oil that had to be poured on or mixed with the grain offering represents the Holy Spirit. The salt that had to be included speaks of the purity of our Lord’s character. Jesus compares Himself to a grain of wheat in John 12:23-25. We know also how He was crushed and suffered on the cross as He gave His perfect live in sacrifice so that He could save us from our sins.

Application: The grain offering points to the life of Jesus. The fact that the grain offering had to be presented along with one of the other sacrifices that involved the shedding of blood reminds us that our hard work will never be able to purchase us our salvation or earn us the blessing of God, for as Hebrews 9:22 states, “without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness”.

Jesus is our Bread of Life (John 6:32)! He is the Perfect One who nourishes my soul as I worship Him and study His Word.

Kneel: Heavenly Father, I praise You and thank You for the precious life of Jesus. He who was without sin became sin on my behalf for the forgiveness of my sins – thank You, Jesus! Thank You for Your shed blood that covers me and allows me access to the throne of God. You were the perfect sacrifice, Jesus. You are the bread of my life. I love to feast on Your Word – it fills every need of my life. Help me to give time in Your Word priority in my life. In the life-changing name of Jesus I pray. Amen!

Walking in His Grace, 

Blogging Through the Bible with Good Morning Girls

Monday, April 20, 2015

Finding Jesus in Leviticus

Welcome back to our study with the Good Morning Girls as we read through the Bible one chapter a day - for as long as it takes us! We just finished up the book of Matthew the week after Easter, and now following our spring break we are diving into Leviticus.

The Sacrifices of Leviticus

Yes, this is going to be a challenging book, but please stick with me through this time! Finding Jesus in Leviticus is what makes this time we are about to share together so very exciting to me!

And how appropriate, I think, that we are reading Leviticus after having just finished celebrating the resurrection of Jesus. It was His sacrifice on the cross that makes final atonement for all of our sins! Just before Jesus died on the cross he said, "It is finished!"

The Sacrifices of Leviticus

There are five sacrifices that we are going to learn about in this week's reading of Leviticus. Each sacrifice foreshadows the life and death of Jesus.

Ken Baugh states the following about these five sacrifices in the introduction of Warren Wiersbe's "Be Holy: Becoming Set Apart for God":

The burnt offering symbolizes Jesus' offering of Himself to the Father as the spotless Lamb of God. The grain offering points to Jesus' life, with the flour representing His perfect character in word and deed. The fellowship offering symbolizes the peace we have with God through Christ (Colossians 1:20). The sin offering explains Jesus' death on the cross, when He took the place of every sinner who would ever believe. Finally, the guilt offering points to Jesus' payment for our sins against others.

I invite you to walk with me for the next six weeks through the pages of the book of Leviticus. Here is our reading plan for this week.

Leviticus Reading Plan

Here is my SOAK for today:

Monday, April 20, 2015

Scripture: Leviticus 1

Observations: Here in chapter 1 we learn about the “Burnt Offering” – the first of six offerings that could be brought to the tabernacle altar. The burnt offering was brought by worshippers when they wanted to express their devotion and dedication to God. Specific instructions were given by God and could not be altered or varied in any way. The sacrifice had to be a male animal from their personal herd or flock; or their sacrifice could be a bird. The worshipper would bring the sacrifice to the door of the tabernacle and the priest would examine it to make sure it was without blemish.

The worshipper was to lay his hand on the sacrifice (Lev. 1:4) from the herd or flock which symbolized two things: 1) the offerer’s identification with the sacrifice and 2) the transferring of something to the sacrifice. The worshipper, in the laying on of his hands, symbolically transferred his sin and guilt to the animal who was dying in place of the sinner. In this way, the burnt offering made atonement for the worshipper.

The phrases “before the Lord” and “unto the Lord” are repeated 7 times in this chapter. This is significant in that it shows the transaction taking place at the altar was between the worshipper and the Lord.

Application: We are to give ourselves completely to the Lord. We can’t pick and choose the parts of our lives that we will surrender to Him – He desires to be Lord of all. We are blessed because our relationship is a personal one-on-one relationship with the Lord.

Jesus was our sacrifice “without blemish and without spot” (1 Peter 1:19). He gave Himself on our behalf in total dedication to God (John 10:17; Romans 5:19; Hebrews 10:10).

The righteousness of Jesus Christ is transferred to us when we accept his atoning sacrifice on the cross. (2 Corinthians 5:21; Romans 3:22)

Kneel: Heavenly Father, thank You for sending Jesus to identify with man. Jesus, you were the offerer and the sacrifice – I am in awe of Your love as I think about this truth. You offered Yourself as the perfect sacrifice and willingly took on all the sins of this world. You willingly bled and died on the cross to make atonement for our sins. Such amazing love! Thank You for Your righteousness that covers me now as a child of God. Help me to live my life in complete submission to You, being wholly committed and dedicated to the holy life that You are calling me to live. Walk with me through the book of Leviticus and give me eyes to see and ears to hear what the Spirit of the Lord is saying. In the powerful, life-giving name of Jesus I pray. Amen!

Will you be joining me in reading the book of Leviticus? Let me know in the comments!

Walking in His Grace, 

Blogging Through the Bible with Good Morning Girls

Monday, April 13, 2015

It's Okay To Say No

Are there times in your life when you feel like you have to do it ALL? As women, we have a lot on our plates, don't we? I don't know about you, but for me it can be very hard sometimes to say no.

I Cannot Do It All

I've been thinking a lot about this lately as other opportunities have presented themselves to me at this time in my life that I have had to say no to simply because I have come to the realization that I cannot do it all.

I repeat...

I cannot do it all.

Sweet Blessings of My Life

There have been a couple of wonderful things happen in my life this past month.

  • I became a grandma on March 13 to a precious baby boy.
  • I took on a babysitting job for my Pastor and his wife.

I had the sweet pleasure of helping my daughter during the first two weeks of my grandson's life until she developed a comfortable routine with him. This meant spending the night with her and getting up every 2-3 hours with her when she breastfed. I helped with diaper changes, cleaning the kitchen - anything that my daughter needed. We had lots of great moma/daughter time together at night watching one of our favorite shows, Gilmore Girls, on Netflix. During the daytime, when her husband was home from work, I would go back to my home with my son and husband. I would do my Bible study with Good Morning Girls, my blogging VA responsibilities for the next day, homeschool my son, clean the house if needed (my husband kept up this area so that thankfully it did not overtake me), fix supper, eat with my husband and son, and then head back over to my daughter's house in the evening. It was a precious time as well as an exhausting time.

Also during this time, I began a babysitting job for my Pastor and his wife. So add this to what you already read above in my daily schedule of life. {wink!}

After 2 weeks, as hard as it was for me, I decided it was time to let my daughter venture off on her own at night with her new mommy duties. I felt sure she would be fine and could handle everything without me. But I reassured her I would be there in a moment's notice if she needed me. I encouraged her in how well she had been doing with her sweet baby and the confidence I had in her that she would do fine. I'm thankful to say she did beautifully without me. I'm so proud of her!

It's Okay To Say No

I learned a very valuable lesson during this time that I had to admit to myself and to my daughter. I can't remember the situation, but there was a moment during that 2-week period that I was with her that she was in tears and commented to me, "I don't know how you do it all." I guess the mommy weariness had taken its toll on my precious daughter to bring these words out of her mouth.

Her words shocked me.

This is not the image I want to give my daughter of me. Because the truth is...

I cannot do it all.

I repeat...

I cannot do it all.

I quickly told her the shocking truth about her mother - yes, me - I cannot do it all...

...and I reassured her that she would be able to do what God was calling her to do because His strength would be working through her weaknesses.

My sweet friends, His strength will work through your weaknesses too. He does the same for me.

God has taught me when I am weak, He is strong. I love how Paul reminds us of this beautiful truth in 2 Corinthians 12:9-11:

But He said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses...For when I am weak, then I am strong.

So I will gladly admit to my daughter, and to you, that I cannot do it all. For that's when the power of God rests on me. I want His power in my life, don't you friends! I want His power in my daughter's life too.

When you realize and admit that you cannot do it all something freeing happens. Not only does Christ's power rest on your life, but you become more discerning with your time. You realize that it's okay to say no to some things that beckon for your time.

I know because just last week after much prayer I decided to say no to a temporary job with our local Annual Furniture Market that is happening this week. I worked last Fall as a Registrar, and they wanted me to come back for this Spring Market. I graciously denied their offer because I'm not afraid anymore to say...

I cannot do it all.

How about you? Do you find it hard to say no or have you come to the realization that you cannot do it all and that it's okay to say no to some things?

Walking in His Grace,