Hope in 2012


Isaiah 53 (NIV)

1 Who has believed our message
and to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed?
2 He grew up before him like a tender shoot,
and like a root out of dry ground.
He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him,
nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.
3 He was despised and rejected by mankind,
a man of suffering, and familiar with pain.
Like one from whom people hide their faces
he was despised, and we held him in low esteem.

4 Surely he took up our pain
and bore our suffering,
yet we considered him punished by God,
stricken by him, and afflicted.
5 But he was pierced for our transgressions,
he was crushed for our iniquities;
the punishment that brought us peace was on him,
and by his wounds we are healed.
6 We all, like sheep, have gone astray,
each of us has turned to our own way;
and the LORD has laid on him
the iniquity of us all.

7 He was oppressed and afflicted,
yet he did not open his mouth;
he was led like a lamb to the slaughter,
and as a sheep before its shearers is silent,
so he did not open his mouth.
8 By oppression[a] and judgment he was taken away.
Yet who of his generation protested?
For he was cut off from the land of the living;
for the transgression of my people he was punished.[b]
9 He was assigned a grave with the wicked,
and with the rich in his death,
though he had done no violence,
nor was any deceit in his mouth.

10 Yet it was the LORD’s will to crush him and cause him to suffer,
and though the LORD makes[c] his life an offering for sin,
he will see his offspring and prolong his days,
and the will of the LORD will prosper in his hand.
11 After he has suffered,
he will see the light of life[d] and be satisfied[e];
by his knowledge[f] my righteous servant will justify many,
and he will bear their iniquities.
12 Therefore I will give him a portion among the great,[g]
and he will divide the spoils with the strong,[h]
because he poured out his life unto death,
and was numbered with the transgressors.
For he bore the sin of many,
and made intercession for the transgressors.

45 thoughts on “Hope in 2012

  1. The vivid depiction of Jesus on the cross in the picture imprints like a silkscreen on the mind and heart the reality and the hope of the words of Isaiah 53.

  2. I think of the many lovely things we give to others maybe wanting to control them or we think we are helping them. We probably call it loving them. We have some reason for pouring ourselves and goods out upon them. (Matt. 7:6) And, then one day they turn on us and bite or attack us. It makes me realize all our good intentions really make little difference. But, this scene as we see in this photo is more than a photo or story of history. No, it is the now. It has life for the masses. This scene has solutions for all life’s situations. Yet, we have a get get wear wear go go do do give give attitude that tries and usurps this scene.

  3. “We have some reason for pouring ourselves and goods out upon them.” Looks like we just want attention and by doing what Matt 7 says we will get it one way or the other…either we will get ‘positive’ attention when the pigs come squealing and running to us for more of the ‘slop’ they love as we throw it at them or we will get negative attention and throw a pity party when they turn to ‘bite or attack us’.
    Now Jesus was not in it for attention. He was in it to carry out the Father’s will and purpose for people. He gave all He was and all He had. He ‘made himself of no reputation’ and said: ‘the Son can do nothing by himself. He does only what he sees the Father doing. Whatever the Father does, the Son also does.” John 5:19

  4. Debi says Jesus was not in it for attention. He was in it to carry out the Father’s will and purpose for people. In this morning study by Beth Moore, Jesus the One and Only, Week 6, Day 2 addressed this as well. Beth Moore writes, “Christ reached the goal (our salvation and His exaltation) through suffering. His road to greatness was a rocky one. A painful one. He knew it in advance, and He set His face resolutely toward the goal and accomplished it. Simply put, we were worth it to him. No matter how resistant we may be to the call, our road to true greatness is also the highway of humility. At times, it, too, will involve suffering, rejection, betrayal, and yes even death-to self. The question becomes, “Is He worth it to us?”

    Beth Moore continues to write, “Without a doubt, one of the primary works God has sought to accomplish in me is to help me get over myself. The process has been excruciating and will no doubt be life-long, but I have never been more thankful for any work in my life. I know no other way to say it: God finally got me to a place where I made myself sick. Oh, I still get plenty of glances at my self-centeredness, but never without a good wave of nausea. God and I now have a term for it in our prayer time…We just call it my “self-stuff.” Almost every day I ask God help me address any active ‘self-stuff’ and nail it to the cross. I literally name anything He brings to mind and look it straight in the face even if it makes me cry.

    The following terms fall under the category of ‘self stuff’: Give them a good look. Place a check by the items you struggle with most.
    __self-exaltation __self-protection –self-righteousness
    –self-will –self-loathing –self-worship
    –self-serving –self-promotion –self-indulgence
    –self-absorption –self-delusion –self-pity
    –self-sufficiency –others_____________________________________

    Beth Moore went on to having us read Luke 9:49. John took issue with the fact that the man wasn’t one of them. …”We make the outrageous assumption that if someone else is not like us or among us, he or she isn’t one of us.

    We must get over any elitist attitudes.” (another self-importance attitude)

    Again in reading Luke 9:51-56 the disciples wanted to destroy the people who didn’t want to house Jesus because He was one his way to Jerusalem. Jesus would not allow it. Beth says there is nothing more permanent or terrifying than the destruction of the lost. We ought to be scared to death to wish such a thing on anyone. Eternity is a long time. Even when punishment comes to the terribly wicked, we are wise to remember with deep sobriety, humility, and thankfulness that only grace saves us from a like sentence.”

    Beth Moore went on to say that “the only difference between us and the lost:
    a blood-stained cross.”

  5. The glorious Olive wood crucifix above is a symbol of the SELF-LESS sacrifice that Jesus Christ the Son of God and His Father, Father God made for all eternity. What greater love could be manifested than to know that before the beginning of time and forever, Jehovah Jesus KNEW and had made covenant with His Father, Father God that He was willing and would come to Planet Earth to be executed for the sins of mankind. Before He created the universe in Genesis, HE knew it. Before the initial creation He knew it. Before angels were created He knew it. For all that eternal past Jehovah Jesus KNEW He would be put upon that cross for the sins of men, women and children of the earth so that whosoever believed in Him would have eternal life with HIM. He always knew it and yet He never quaked. He didn’t back out, shirk the duty, call a million angels to come to His defense. He did it for us. For the glory set before Him He did it. But that glory was not just selfish glory. It was the glory of bringing souls, ad infinitum souls, to the glories of Heaven to present before His Father. That is the glory of Heaven. That is the selflessness of Jesus Christ…Jehovah Jesus. That is the love of the Father for us.

  6. The “Life or death’ difference Sara states above really seems to pop in contrast when you put the ‘self-sins’ Rena writes about against the ‘selflessness of Jesus Christ’ that Mg describes. Seems when we tinker around in other’s lives with our self-made efforts and ‘intentions’ we bring death to the situation. When I re-read Isaiah 53, I can see that this is Heaven’s concert and the only one we should be playing our instruments with in order for others and ourselves to have Life and that Life more abundant.

  7. How I enjoy tuning my instrument, my words, with the heavenly tuner so I can play in “Heaven’s Concert.”

    Sometimes I have to practice 1 second out of 1 minute to try and get back in shape for the musical to begin. O! to be more disciplined in 2012 to be able to pick up my instrument any second in the minute instead of having to practice at least one second of the minute.

  8. When I took piano lessons as a little kid, from Sister Mary Mercy, God rest her soul, I did not like to practice at all. My parents had to stay on me a lot so that I would put in my 1/2 hour-1 hour a day. But I didn’t always practice my instrument responsibly or let us say with diligence. I thank God that my parents had the foresight to “encourage” me constantly to keep at it for it became my livelihood and a great source of pleasure to me, especially after I received Christ as my personal Savior and was able to play for Him and write songs for Him and to Him.
    HOWEVER, those students, my peers, who practiced diligently went on and became MORE accomplished than I, even if they did NOT make it a career as I was destined to do. My point being, that we must do our diligent best in each phase of our lives so that we will be prepared for the precise “concert”that God has for us…whether we play our instrument with a philharmonic orchestra or a country group or with a praise band or in the congregation of the Just; that we play skillfully, in harmony, in tune, in sync, in rhythm and most of all that we follow the great Maestro, the Great Conductor, the Great Shepherd as He conducts us with His Staff!

  9. I love the results of doing a good job. Guess we get stickers. A palm tree!
    “The righteous shall flourish like a palm tree…” (Psalm 92:12, NKJ)

  10. It seems significant that the righteous are compared to palm trees. As I read up on this tree family and the impact it has had on the world and its peoples, it gives greater meaning to flourish. Palms are not just ornamental for show. They provided food, medicine, shelter, building materials, etc to peoples in Biblical times to sustain their survival. And they continue to give valuable resources today. They really are beneficial, all-around workers. I think that’s something to think about when we read, “the righteous shall flourish…”

  11. It is interesting how the Bible uses TREES in so many of its Scriptures.
    As Debi said above, ” the righteous shall flourish like palm trees” There were the FIG: representing Israel and fruitful tree; Olive bringing forth the precious oil representing the Holy Spirit of the Living God; There were the two trees in the Garden of Eden representing Good and Evil; there was the cedar, fragrant and functional; the VINE by which Jesus represents Himself, fruitful and nourishing; and the Bramble bush… representing .the selfish, self-seeking, prideful (the plant ).

  12. Tree of Life is always a mystery…It intrigues, fascinates and thrills.
    Let’s not forget how our walk is symbolic of a tree:
    Psalm 1: “Blessed is the one
    who does not walk in step with the wicked
    or stand in the way that sinners take
    or sit in the company of mockers,
    2 but whose delight is in the law of the LORD,
    and who meditates on his law day and night.
    3 That person is like a tree planted by streams of water,
    which yields its fruit in season
    and whose leaf does not wither—
    whatever they do prospers.”

  13. Jesus made a family tree for us when he died on the tree, the cross. According to Ephesians 2 the cross brings us into God’s family.
    “and that He might reconcile them both to God in one body through the cross”…

    “So now you Gentiles are no longer strangers and foreigners. You are citizens along with all of God’s holy people. You are members of God’s family.”

  14. Jesus can trace His family tree all the way back to Abraham and in another place all the way back to God. .(see Matthew 1 and Luke 3)
    That tree is a family tree of life… We enter by the blood of the Lamb of God and His shed blood on that Olivewood Cross. We who accept the faultless work of the cross and ask Jesus into our hearts become betrothed to Jesus Christ. And at the wedding feast of the Lamb we will marry into the family of God. We will then be called Hephzibah and Beulah!!

  15. Have you heard the phrase “up a tree”? Which means confused, without an answer…

    Seems like many times we are up a tree!

  16. I think James 3:16 tells us a couple ways to get up in a tree: “For where envy and self-seeking exist, confusion and every evil thing are there.”

  17. Envy and self seeking goes back to some of Beth’s laundry list above. Bright are the eyes of midnight on the eve of a New Year! Sometimes being up a tree might be a good thing. Luke 19:4 tells about a man named, Zaccheus, that knew the value of being up a tree. “So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore-fig tree beside the road, for Jesus was going to pass that way.”

  18. Interesting how in Genesis 2 and 3 there were a lot of trees in the garden but Adam and Eve chose eating from the tree of knowledge of good and evil over the tree of life where if they had eaten fruit from that they would have lived forever (Gen 3:22). And how Jesus said if anyone eats of Him he will live forever (John 6:51). Yet, many still choose today to not eat of Him either. Guess that Olive tree cross is “despised and rejected by mankind,…” just like Isaiah 53:3 says above.

  19. ” Bright are the eyes of midnight on the eve of a New Year!” Now this is an unusual statement of Sara’s to think on for its importance.
    In the Bible some pretty amazing things happen or will happen at midnight…the Lord killed the firstborn in Egypt at midnight(Exodus 12:29); Paul and Silas prayed and praised at midnight in jail and then there was an earthquake and the doors sprung open and they were free (Acts 16:25); and at midnight (according to Jesus parable of the virgins, Matt 25,6) there was a cry and the Bridegroom came to get those who were ready.
    Maybe those ‘bright eyes of midnight’ are a warning for us to stay alert and ready because we don’t know what may happen, particularly at midnight.

  20. Debi, pretty good ideas (above) on “Bright are the eyes of midnight on the eve of a New Year!: Few thoughts:
    A night vision device (NVD) is an optical instrument that allows images to be produced in levels of light approaching total darkness. (only 5 virgins out of 10 had oil for a light…

    Eve, the day or period of time immediately before an event or occasion…the evening or day before a religious festival (Paul and Silas made it out by miracle from The Light)
    Her name was Eve…(O how we yearn for a little bite of the apple) She was the Mother of Cain and Abel….what a contrast…Cain has been referred to as ‘of the evil one.’

    Let you finish the enigma….

  21. Speaking of trees, Proverbs 15: 4 says, ” A wholesome tongue is a TREE OF LIFE : but perverseness therein is a breach in the spirit.’ Proverbs 11:30 says, “The fruitage of the righteous one is a tree of life, and he that is winning souls is wise.” So I begin to see that the TREE OF LIFE has lovely, edible fruit of which the wise can eat. Also in Revelation 22:1 ….And on this side of the river and on that side there were TREES OF LIFE producing twelve crops of FRUIT yielding their fruits each month. And the leaves of the trees were for the healing of the nations.” Then Jesus says, “To him that overcomes I will grant to eat of the TREE OF LIFE, which is in the paradise of God.” (Rev.2:7)
    So I am seeing that the TREE OF LIFE is fruitful. But not just for beauty but the fruit must be eaten. The Sycamore/Fig tree that Zaccheus was hanging out in was a fruitful tree for it yielded a new soul for the Kingdom of God. For when Jesus “plucked” Zaccheus out of the tree he brought forth fruit to minister to the poor and bring, not only his soul but others into the Kingdom of God. Some of the mystery of the Tree of Life must be the eating of its fruit???

  22. Evidently, the Fruit of the Tree of Life is available to whosoever will. In one of Sara’s books, she writes about the “Edible Branch” Who is Jesus Christ. So it is available if we will but partake of it. But just like Adam and Eve who lived in a heavenly Paradise where the Tree of Life was in the center of their garden….they seemed to be more interested in “forbidden fruit”.
    The Bible is printed on paper that comes from trees; I think Debi or Sara pointed that out this morning. The Bible is the Fruit of the Word of God. It is very available, at least in this nation….and many others, to whosoever will pick one up for a few dollars, or procure one from Bible Societies that provide bibles, gratis. The Fruit is available….for now anyway…but many, many are NOT interested but prefer the shrunken, withered, dried up, bitter, evil, poisonous fruit of worldly pronouncements….i.e. the fruit of the tree of good and evil.

  23. “In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.”
    John 1:4, 5
    Had Eve comprehended she may have chose Life. Had Cain comprehended he may have chose Life instead of death for his brother.

  24. Good point, Debi. But I proffer another perspective. Adam & Eve had the light. It covered them like a garment and they were ENLIGHTENED to high capacity. God walked in the garden with them. GOD!…was their companion. I think that perhaps they comprehended very well…just like those of us who proclaim the Lord Jesus as our Savior and King and Counselor and Guide….and yet We (that is to say “I” ) make wrong choices too often…though The Bible says I have the mind of Christ. Yet I CHOOSE the rotten fruit of the tree of good & evil, too many times in certain situations. So I think Eve knew…Adam had instructed her and The Lord walked with them….so I propose that she knew …she comprehended but did it anyway…rebellion.
    Romans says, where there is no law there is no sin. So Cain slew his brother before the law of “thou shall not murder” came to mankind through the messenger Moses. There was TRANSGRESSION, Paul says, but not sin, per se. So I do not know if Cain COMPREHENDED….but I believe Adam & Eve did because they had a specific commandment from the Lord….DO NOT EAT OF THE TREE OF GOOD AND EVIL LEST YOU DIE>
    This is my proposal. Open for rebuttal.

  25. As Sara indicates…”She was the Mother of Cain and Abel”. We can birth either evil or good.
    “Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death”. James 1:15
    Guess that ties in w/ “(O how we yearn for a little bite of the apple).

  26. ““Bright are the eyes of midnight on the eve of a New Year!: ”
    following along with Sara’s info on ‘A night vision device (NVD)…’
    my thought is that Jesus has bright eyes at midnight because His eyes see all and see through the darkness of every man’s soul and deeds. He has super x-ray vision and nothing escapes Him.

  27. You got that right, Debi. He sees my every move, discerns every thought, sees through all my actions, knows my motives….I am undone. I cannot bamboozle Jesus. He loves me too much to let me deceive myself or try to deceive GOD. What a lark!So He gives me teachers and prophets and Scriptures and dreams to help get me back into line.
    For the eyes of the LORD range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him. You have done a foolish thing, and from now on you will be at war.” And the war is with the enemy of my soul.

  28. “(only 5 virgins out of 10 had oil for a light…”
    Matt 25 says they had no oil because they were foolish.
    Maybe they were foolish because they wasted their money on other things and couldn’t buy oil thinking someone else (like the other 5 virgins) would come through for them. Or maybe they didn’t think oil was as important as other things so they procrastinated getting some and spent their time and efforts on other things.

  29. We do not replenish our “oil” of the Holy Spirit when we stop listening to Him. Our anointing drains away and our lamps run low when we do not replenish our supply with the Source of the “oil”, the Holy Spirit. The oil is the anointing of the Holy Spirit and that is what breaks the yoke of bondage…that anointing.

  30. It must be fun for a season for us to get our priorities mixed with the blood flowing from the Lamb that was slain on The Cross of Calvary! Our addictions must make us think we are the sacrificial Lamb! Well, we are wrong. Might be a way out of self to realize we are not the Lamb slain. Revelation 13:8 “And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.”

    Hebrews 12:2 “Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.”

    Handel George Frideric gave us; “Worthy Is The Lamb That Was Slain.” Maybe we can’t compose music, sing professionally, or even speak with clarity but we can Worship The Lamb That Was Slain, if we chose to. I would like for my goal in 2012, to be; ” Worship The Lamb, Jesus, that was slain for my sins.”

  31. It is interesting to note,as I am purposing in my heart to re-read the Bible thru this year, 2012, that In Genesis 8:11 I saw….like in a new light…for the first time although I have read it many times….and Sara has mentioned these verses in some of her teachings…but now I saw it in the light of the discussions on the blog thedailylily.org that the first sign of life after the Noaic flood was an Olive Tree. It must have been since the dove returned to Noah with an a freshly plucked olive leaf. I assume that it came from an Olive Tree. And when the dove departed again she didn’t creturn. We might assume from the text that she found her nesting in an olive tree, a symbol of things to come.

  32. “Our addictions must make us think we are the sacrificial Lamb”. My thought is that Jesus paid the price for others. We can’t buy it, pay for it, trade for it, own it or control it. We may do this to get a ‘fix’ for our addictions. I think Jesus tells us where our ‘priorities’ should be in Revaltion 3:18…” I advise you: Buy gold purified in fire from me so that you may be rich. Buy white clothes from me. Wear them so that you may keep your shameful, naked body from showing. Buy ointment to put on your eyes so that you may see.”

  33. ….set the captives and oppressed free and make us that are blind see (Luke 4: 18)
    …give us eternal life (John 6:51)
    …justify us before the Father and save us from His wrath (Romans 5:9)
    …overcome the devil (Rev 12:11)

  34. 1 Peter 1:18-20 For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect. He was chosen before the creation of the world, but was revealed in these last times for your sake.
    Peter goes on to say that even though Jesus’ eternal goal was not made manifest until AFTER the passion, death and resurrection, still Jesus was virtually martyred from the foundation of the world. And Peter tells us a marvelous, sacred thing for us to remember. This supreme sacrifice, this tragic yet heroic death and rising up, was detained and revealed in these end times, last times, our era…for our sakes. How wonderful and merciful and glorious and magnanimous is the Lord God Almighty to reserve the manifestation of the Cross for us. Hebrews 11:39 explains it this way; Speaking of the famous HALL of Faith and all those who have gone ahead of us…the Saints of the Old Testament…yet Hebrews says, ” These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised. For God had something better in mind for us, so that they would not reach perfection without us. What compassion God has on us that He would include us on this side of the Cross so that we might be made righteous by the blood of the Lamb manifested, even though He had been slain from before the earth was formed.!! Not David, nor Job, nor Solomon, not Ruth, Abraham, not Daniel nor Joseph, Isaiah, Jeremiah…none can approach the Throne Room of God without us! Wow!!! ” Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders us and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. What an incentive….the Blood of the Lamb slain for me from the foundation of the earth and the saints in Heaven awaiting my just decisions. Thank You Holy God. (Hebrews chpts. 11 & 12)

  35. Thinking on Sara’s comment, “There is Power in His Blood that can…”

    “give me a happy day…..” Sounds simple. But it is so profound.

    Following the thread I see of Jesus our Hope, the cross, the Tree of Life, the power of the blood…
    I was reading in Proverbs 4 that “happy is the man who finds wisdom..” (vs 13). It also says (vs 18) that this wisdom is a tree of life to those who take hold of her, and happy are all that retain her.” That takes me full circle back to the picture of that cross above and Isaiah 53… for Jesus is wisdom.

    “God has united you with Christ Jesus. For our benefit God made him to be wisdom itself. Christ made us right with God; he made us pure and holy, and he freed us from sin.” I Cor 1:30 NLT

  36. The Blood of Jesus will never lose its power. However, If I don’t allow it to work in my life…that is to trust the redeeming power of Jesus Christ to transform my being….it’s like the old proverb….”you can lead a horse to water but you can’t MAKE him drink”. You can lead people to the WATER OF LIFE , THE BLOOD OF THE LAMB (which is Christ) but you cannot command them to drink. We, each individually must WANT that living water. And then we must drink of it. Jesus said to the woman at the well, ” but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”…The woman said to him, “Sir, give me this water, so that I won’t get thirsty or have to keep coming here to draw water.”
    So obviously she wanted that water, not really understanding at that point what Jesus was talking about. Then Jesus said to her, and I paraphrase, OK you want that eternal Water?? Good! You have a desire for it. That is a good start. But FIRST…..Go, call your husband and come back. I have no husband she replied.” Jesus said, you are correct. You have had 5 husbands and the one you are with, now, is NOT your husband. Aha! Here is the clue, the key… Jesus gives that living Water of life and the His Precious Blood to ” whosoever will” but there must be an acknowledgment & surrendering of the OLD lifestyle, the old cravings and the sinful desires. If we have no intention of surrendering those things to Christ, then we are not drinking from the SPRING OF LIVING WATER and drinking the precious blood of Jesus as He commanded in John 6:53, Jesus said to them, “I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and DRINK his blood, you have no life in you.” So if I want that living water and the cleansing blood I have to surrender my addictions and worldly habits….not try to disguise them under another auspices, sort of like what Sara wrote above…”I think of the many lovely things we give to others maybe wanting to control them or we think we are helping them. We probably call it loving them. We have some reason for pouring ourselves and goods out upon them…” or call the “charity” etc.
    Jesus knows all these things. We cannot hide one thought, idea, action or deed from Him. He knows our motives and our cover-ups. Jesus, I bring all these flaws and sins to You and confess them to You, once again, and ask for Your cleansing blood to wash away my pretenses and my deceptions. I thank You for your forgiveness and Your Blood that You shed on the cross for me and for all who will ever come to You to drink of the living Water and the Blood of Jesus.

  37. 1 Cor. 12: 12….For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free, and we were all made to DRINK of the one & only Holy Spirit.”

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