Tag Archives: to Please God

Men who believed and had faith in a Higher Power they could not see

In the ancient past there were men who did know where to go. They could have followed their own path, but they choose to follow the directions given to them by a much higher Power than any human being.

faith_cropped

Today there are many people who believe their patriarch Abraham got there where he had to be by the Power of the One Who directed him and Who he was prepared to follow. By his act of faith Abraham received a blessing which may come over to his progeny. The Jews believe they are the rightful descendants of the patriarch Abraham. Muslims also take Abraham as their most important patriarch and ‘father’. In him they all see a man of faith,like there have been many people of faith who went before us and showed us what we too should belief and do.

In the ancient books we come to see that faith led Abel to offer God a better sacrifice than Cain’s sacrifice. Scripture also tells us about Enoch who was taken by God because He had found in him a man of faith and because He was pleased with him. We also should see that no one can please God without faith. Whoever goes to God must believe that God exists and that He rewards those who seek him. (Hebrews 11:6)

It was also faith that led Noah to listen when God warned him about the things in the future that he could not see. This man came to build an ark in a place were there was no big water and found people laughing at him. No matter how they ridiculed him he obeyed God and built a ship to save his family. Through faith Noah condemned the world and received God’s approval that comes through faith. (Hebrews 11:7)

Can you imagine someone would tell you in your old age that you can still get children or would ask you to some place you do not know?  Again in the Old Testament we come to know about a man with faith which led him to obey when God called him to go to a place that he would receive as an inheritance. Abraham left his own country without knowing where he was going. (Hebrews 11:8) It led him to live as a foreigner in the country that the Elohim Hashem Jehovah had promised him. He lived in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who received the same promise from God the Most High Abraham trusted God and was waiting for the city that God had designed and built, the city with permanent foundations. (Hebrews 11:9)

All those pepole showed they had strong belief in that Unseen Power. they were convinced that they could fully trust that Voice that reached them from the unknown. For them That Voice was much more important than any human voice. they were convinced there was a better substance for them when the would follow that Incredible Voice, than what man could offer them. They had the feeling that what would come over them or would given to them when they would follow that Voice was much more important than what the world could or would give them. They did not first demand evidence. They had not to see a thing or set of things helpful in forming a conclusion or judgment. The means by which an allegation could have been proven, such as oral testimony, documents, or physical objects, were not necessary for them. By faith they followed what was deep in their heart.

We can see that it was faith that enabled Abraham to become a father, even though he was old and Sarah had never been able to have children. Abraham trusted that God would keep his promise. We should remember that Abraham was as good as dead. Yet, from this man came descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as countless as the grains of sand on the seashore. (Hebrews 11:11)

Looking at those men we should know that they didn’t receive the things that God had promised them, but they saw these things coming in the distant future and rejoiced. They acknowledged that they were living as strangers with no permanent home on earth.

We too today, should consider ourselves as tenants in this world; Sojourners, travelling in this time space.  We reside temporarily on this earth where mankind tries to make something of it, but has proven not to succeed in it. Therefore we should trust God and look forward to the coming times and the coming Kingdom of God.

Through faith Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel, and the prophets conquered kingdoms, did what God approved, and received what God had promised. They shut the mouths of lions, put out raging fires, and escaped death. They found strength when they were weak. They were powerful in battle and defeated other armies.(Hebrews 11:32-33)

All these people, mentioned above, were known for their faith, but none of them received what God had promised. God planned to give us something very special so that we would gain eternal life with them. It is in those promises which are made we should have faith.

As faith convinces us that God created the world through his word, we also believe that He guided His people all the time and that He does not abandon any one who is willing to belief in Him. We should put our hope and trust in the Unseen and put our hope on Him and on His son who paved the way to the entrance of the great Kingdom. Without faith we shall never be able to reach the right goal or to run and finish the race.

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Please do read the faith-chapter of the apostate Paul, his letter to the Hebrews: Hebrews 11

We're not called to success, we're called to faith. We please God when we step out in faith in Jesus.

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Preceding

How to Live Beyond the Ordinary

How to set your mind

9 Adar and bickering or loving followers of the Torah preparing for Pesach

Knowing The Truth and Loving The Truth

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Additional reading

  1. Faith
  2. Issue 116 of Faith alive
  3. Assimilation of the mind to the divine ideas, principles, and affections exhibited in the Scriptures
  4. Honest-hearted people are losing faith in humanity and humanity losing faith in God
  5. People Seeking for God 3 Laws and directions
  6. Fear of God reason to return to Holy Scriptures
  7. Hope by faith and free gift

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Related
  1. Pistis ( πίστις)
  2. By faith Enoch
  3. What to do to Grow in the Spirit
  4. Be a God Pleaser
  5. Oh Mighty God! by Penny Chavers
  6. It is impossible to please God without faith. (today’s verse) 
  7. A List Of Ten Things That God Is Pleased About
  8. Please God, and not people
  9. The Seen And The Unseen
  10. When You Want to Step out but You’re Afraid to Fail
  11. Personal Victories
  12. Leadership Insight…
  13. Holding on to God
  14. Hey God…Meditation Monday
  15. Inside the Mind: The Human Soul
  16. Today is One PartDivine Providence
  17. Lessons from Hopelessness

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Filed under Knowledge & Wisdom, Lifestyle, Religious affairs

9 Adar and bickering or loving followers of the Torah preparing for Pesach

The Catholics may have started their Lenten Season and try to lessen what they normally would eat and cut in entertainment activities. When we look around us we may find a few people who want to take the time to go over to a willing abstinence or reduction from some or all food, drink, or both, for a period of time.

Many religious observances have fasting in their program.

You should know that it is not bad to have every year some cleaning of the body and mind. Also in the house many may do a Spring cleaning. Abstinence from food or drink or both may be done for health, ritualistic, religious, or ethical purposes. All over the world we can find peoples taking abstention which may be complete or partial, lengthy, of short duration, or intermittent. Fasting has been promoted and practised from antiquity worldwide by physicians, by the founders and followers of many religions, by culturally designated individuals (e.g., hunters or candidates for initiation rites), and by individuals or groups as an expression of protest against what they believe are violations of social, ethical, or political principles.

Since at least the 5th century bce fasting has been used therapeutically. The ancient Greek physician who lived during Greece’s Classical period and is traditionally regarded as the father of medicine, Hippocrates recommended abstinence from food or drink for patients who exhibited certain symptoms of illness.

Beit Hillel is located in Israel

Northern district, Mevo’ot HaHermon council, moshav Beit Hillel

Detail of the Knesset Menorah, Jerusalem: Hillel the Elder teaching a man the meaning of the whole Torah while he stands on one foot

In almost every rabbinic book we can find mention of 9 Adar as a fast day. Though we must admit that during the last 2,000 years, not many Jews actually observed it. According to tradition, 9 Adar was the day on which initially peaceful and constructive disagreements between Beit Hillel and Beit Shammai, the two great schools of thought during the Mishnaic period, erupted into a violent conflict over 18 points of law. The 1st century Jewish scholar Shammai was the most eminent contemporary, an important figure in Judaism‘s core work of rabbinic literature, the Mishnah, and the halakhic opponent of Hillel, the highest authority among the Pharisees (predecessors to Rabbinic Judaism), founder of the House of Hillel school for Tannaïm (Sages of the Mishnah) and the founder of a dynasty of Sages who stood at the head of the Jews living in the Land of Israel until roughly the fifth century of the Common Era.

Hillel was the head of the great school, at first associated with Menahem the Essene, who might be the same Menahem the Essene as the one mentioned by Flavius Josephus in relation to King Herod, afterward with Shammai, Hillel’s peer in the teaching of Jewish Law. The family of Jesus Christ also belonged to the Essenes.

Hillel and his Torah colleague Shammai were both disciples of Shemaya and Avtalyon as well as the last of the Zugos. (The five generations of Zugos were Jose ben Joezer and Jose ben Jochanan, Joshua ben Perachiah and Nitai HaArbeli, Judah ben Tabbai and Shimon ben Shatach, Shemaya and Avtalyon, and Hillel and Shammai.) Both were fearless upholders of the Torah’s honour, standing up to Herod and brooking no mockery of Judaism.

Due to increased Roman persecution, Hillel and Shammai their disciples were unable to analyze new situations as deeply as Jewish scholars once could. As a result, the emerging scholars broke off into two schools of thought, known as Bais Shammai and Bais Hillel or Beit Hillel and Beit Shammai, and wound up disputing more than 300 cases. This beginning of large-scale argumentation (machlokes) is viewed by the Talmud as a sad diminution in Torah scholarship, which, due to the lack of clarity, had drastic results for the Jewish people.

At first the scholars personally treated each other with great love and respect. But according to various sources 9 Adar was the day on which initially peaceful and constructive disagreements between Beit Hillel and Beit Shammai, erupted into a violent conflict over 18 points of law, killing as many as 3,000 students in the fighting which should have been avoided.

We can take 9 Adar as a cautionary tale. There is a timely and pressing need to examine how the model of machloket l’shem shamayim (dispute for the sake of Heaven) between Beit Hillel, which produced 14 generations of great leaders, spanning nearly 400 years, and guiding the Jewish people through some of their most difficult times, and Beit Shammai devolved into a Jewish civil war. The lesson from that occasion is that

if we don’t work to resolve conflict peaceably and in a way in which everyone walks out stronger and the community is strengthened,

notes Nurit Bachrach, director of Mosaica: The Center for Consensual Conflict Resolution.

9Adar9 Adar, may be looked at as a day we should recognize the urgency to impart skills for constructive conflict to future Jewish leaders and therefore the Pardes Center for Judaism and Conflict Resolution has therefore chosen this day to be the international Jewish Day of Constructive Conflict (machloket l’shem shamayim), dedicated to both the study and practice of Judaism and conflict resolution.

People need to have their minds open for different thoughts. They should always try to negotiate with those of other opinions and should always remember that all people are creations of the Most High, in His image, which we should show respect.

As in any community there may be different thoughts or different schools. All created in the image of God should respect the others around them. We also should know that nobody can know everything, but God. We as fallible human beings shall have to try to work things out. God has given us time to do that. He also has given His Word and His Law, which we remembered this last weekend. That Torah or Written Law should be our guide. We should follow those instructions.

There are 18 ways you or your organization can participate in your home, workplace, synagogue, school and community, recalling the 18 matters over which the conflict erupted.

Traditional Fast Day Customs (Minhagim)

  1. Fast (ta’anit)
  2. Fast from destructive speech (ta’anit dibbur)
  3. Contribute (tzedakah)
  4. Self-reflect (teshuvah)
  5. Pray (tefilah)
  6. Cook/eat (se’udah)

 

Learn/Teach (Talmud Torah)

  1. Write
  2. Study/Read/listen
  3. Give a dvar torah (words of Torah)
  4. Teach
  5. Announce/share/tell
  6. Create

 

Be a Rodef Shalom for the Day

  1. Sign/Create a Rodef Shalom Agreement (Haskamah)
  2. Greet others as a rodef shalom
  3. Be a rodef shalom in your own conflicts
  4. Be a rodef shalom for others in conflict
  5. Be a rodef shalom by facilitating a constructive conversation
  6. Invite a professional rodef shalom

 

On this day it is also important that we do think about the reason why we received the Torah and how we should use it as a guide to construct our life. If we want to be a Child of God we should behave like one. As children of God we do have to feel like brothers and sisters of each other, respecting and loving each other, trying together to please our heavenly Father.

When we treasure our friendship with the Most High Elohim Hashem Jehovah, we should strive to please Him in every aspect of our life, including our thoughts. Preparing ourselves for the coming period, living up to Erev Pesach or 14 Nisan on Monday April the 10th in 2017 and hoping to have a joyful Pesach the next two days days, we may take the coming days to think how we can better our life and cleanse our inner soul. Fasting, or trying not to be tempted by certain things we so love, is a good way to train our self.

Everybody has to work at himself or herself to come to have “a pure heart”. This has to happen by focusing our minds on what is chaste, virtuous, and praiseworthy. (Ps. 24:3, 4; 51:6; Phil. 4:8) Granted, Jehovah makes allowances for our imperfect nature. He knows that we are prone to improper desires. But we do have to recognize that it saddens Him when we nurture wrong thoughts instead of doing all we can to reject them. (Gen. 6:5, 6) Therefore let us remember those squabbling studious Jewish followers of Hillel and his Torah colleague Shammai, and make sure that we do not fall in the trap of discussing so much smaller things that they grow above our head into something which would bring us to fight and do something against the Will of the Most High.

Going up to the days of Pesach we can take time to meditate on the Word of God plus His Works and to reflect on our way of living. It can be a good thing to avoid being tempted to eat or drink certain things we love, and to stand still by those who were going day in day out through the desert, hoping to find the promised Holy Land soon. We too still have our hopes on the Holy Land and look forward to see it coming to a time of peace. We therefore should take enough time to consider what it is what God wants and to come to accept that Jews, Christians and Muslims should all be partakers of that Holy Land. In the end all the world should know that the Kingdom of God shall be the place for all lovers of God, no matter from which school they came of from which denomination they were part of. Jerusalem shall be the capital of God’s Kingdom here on earth and there shall be place enough for all those who want to do the Will of God.

Doing the Will of God should be our aim. To do that Will of God we may only worship One True God and keep ourselves away form all sorts of heathen rites and traditions. So, if you want to fast, do it, but do it with a pure heart, not mixing with pagan traditions and keep your thoughts chaste or spotless. An important way to show our complete reliance on Jehovah is by making our fight against unclean thoughts and staying restraint a matter of prayer. When we draw close to Jehovah in prayer, he draws close to us. He generously gives us his holy spirit, thus strengthening our resolve to resist immoral thoughts and remain chaste. Let us these days remember that and let peace grow in our hearts and share it with others around us.

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Preceding articles

Happy First Day of Spring: Spring Cleaning!

From the Ramadan into the eid

Your Future

7 Ways To Become A Better Christian

Reactions against those of the other sex

Glimlach raam naar je ziel

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Additional reading

  1. People Seeking for God 3 Laws and directions
  2. Seeing or not seeing and willingness to find God
  3. Gone astray, away from God
  4. Creation of the earth and man #3 Of the Sabbath day #1 the Seventh day
  5. First mention of a solution against death 7 Human sacrifice
  6. Hanukkahgiving or Thanksgivvukah
  7. Displeasures and Actions of the Almighty God
  8. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #10 Prayer #8 Condition
  9. Lenten Season and our minds and hearts the spiritual temple in which God seeks to live

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Other related articles

  1. The other way around?
  2. A Moment of Bliss
  3. Lent
  4. Day 0 – The Preparation, The Mission
  5. Catholic-Judeo Spirituality of Fasting: It’s all about squealing with joy
  6. Why Catholics Observe Lent Uniquely
  7. Daily Mass: Fasting for God. Catholic Inspiration
  8. Lent is Here and I’m Late Posting This!
  9. Five Reasons Not to Observe Lent*
  10. What Did You Give Up For Lent?
  11. Fasting For… (3.4.2017)
  12. Meditation on Lent: Good Gifts
  13. Lent – An Invitation to Joy
  14. Facebook Fast
  15. Soul Food: Lent Temptation cakes
  16. Begone, Satan!
  17. Why is Fasting So Difficult For Me?
  18. Day 3 Fasting & Abstinence: Good Read
  19. Lent Day 4: 3/4/2017
  20. Day 4 Fasting: Day of Temptations
  21. Taking the Other Seriously
  22. What Does God Really Want From Us this Lent?
  23. The Unbiblical Nature of the Lenten Season!
  24. March 2017 Fasting Log
  25. “Why Do You Fast?”
  26. My Fast is Finished but God’s Not
  27. It is well with my soul
  28. Lent Day 5: 3/5/2017
  29. Day 5 Fasting & Abstinence: Blessed Sunday
  30. Healing crisis
  31. Fasting Opens Us Up
  32. slob days
  33. Fasting Echoes Joy
  34. Lent 6 ~ Fasting to Repair and Restore
  35. Lent Day 6: 3/6/2017
  36. Day 6 Fasting: Adjustment Over
  37. 1029
  38. 100 days to Ramadan
  39. Aiming for an outstanding Ramadan The holy month of Ramadan this year is going to start at the end of May.
  40. Targets for Ramadan
  41. Daily News Egypt: Twitter reveals increase of users’ activities in Ramadan
  42. Fasting Tips for New Muslims
  43. When Is Laylatul Qadr?
  44. Praying Maghrib and Esha in Jamaat in The Last 10 Nights of Ramadaan
  45. Prolonged Du’a in Sujood and Tashahud in The Last 10 Nights of Ramadaan
  46. Doing Good Deeds in The Last 10 Blessed Days of Ramadaan
  47. Tips for The Last 10 Nights of Ramadaan
  48. “Better Than:” The Spirit of Fasting
  49. Detox

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Filed under Activism and Peace Work, Being and Feeling, Health affairs, Lifestyle, Religious affairs

Reactions against those of the other sex

Lust in the Dust

Lust in the Dust (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

When you’re genuinely born of God, you’ll be growing to be an overcomer as you deal with the temptations around you — the world, the flesh, and the adversary.

When becoming a Christian you decided to become a child of God and to live according His statutes. You have put your old life aside and made the decision to take on an other life, one in accordance to God’s Law.

As a Christian you should try to please God and have your thoughts focused on the right things.

According to 1 John 5:4,

“Whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.”

The word overcome implies a struggle, getting over something. that what is not easy, that what tempts us, that what can bring us from our position and get us on the wrong path. Also having the wrong ideas like Peter had, can make us being called ourselves an adversary or satan.

Human race is a weak one. And men are for sure not the strongest of the humans. In many religions that is taken in consideration. In some Muslim cultures it goes so far that they say women have to hide their contours and faces for men, because otherwise they would tempt them too much and man is not able to be counted for his deeds in such instances.

In our western culture you would think men and women would respect each other. But still too often we hear stories of men going too far and taking women as a subject or just an object to be used. The previous posting is a good example of this.

"Idle Thoughts", 1898

“Idle Thoughts”, 1898 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

It can well be when a man sees a woman that his mind goes off dreaming and fantasying. The same for women, when they see certain men, they also can have their thoughts going into fantasy world. In such circumstances it is important that we know how far we can have our thoughts linger away. For sure our physical reactions may not bring the other person in shyness or quandary.

Being confronted with ‘toppling thoughts’ we should come to our senses and remember the lesson about the eyes and fornication. We may look at the other sex, but how and how long we look in which way makes a difference

We’re faced with an adversary whom we must overcome. Our adversary is identified in 1 John 2:14 as the wicked one:

“I have written to you, young men, because you are strong, and the word of God abides in you, and you have overcome the wicked one.”

John went on in the next verses to say:

“Do not love the world or the things in the world. . . . For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world” (1 John 2:15-17).

Life has to offer a lot of lust. Daily we can be confronted with lust and temptation, of all sorts. How we cope with it is important.

You may not be victorious over every temptation every time, but you’ll make progress in gaining more victories and losing less battles as you grow stronger in Christ and in the power of the abiding Word of God.

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Preceding article: Part of a great team but also of gender discrimination

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Find also

  1. Because men choose to go their own way
  2. Epicurus’ Problem of Evil
  3. Satan the evil within
  4. What others think about the tree of knowledge of good and evil
  5. Object of first woe
  6. Gainsayers In Apostolic Days
  7. A look at materialism
  8. Material gain to honour God
  9. Summermonths and consumerism
  10. Savouring pictorial entertainment
  11. Belonging to or being judged by
  12. Male domination and tyranny giving opportunities to defile the Name of God
  13. Temptation in matrimony
  14. Subcutaneous power for humanity 2 1950-2010 Post war generations
  15. The Cares of Life
  16. Wondering
  17. A love not exempting us from trials
  18. When the wind blows hard on a tree
  19. The road to success is dotted with many tempting parking places
  20. Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked
  21. It continues to be a never ending, exhausting battle for survival.
  22. Signs of the Last Days
  23. Salvation and Righteousness
  24. Hebraic Roots Bible 1 Corinthians 6:15-20 – Flee fornication and be joined to our Master
  25. Nazarene Commentary 1 Corinthians 6:15-20 – Flee from Immorality

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Filed under Being and Feeling, Lifestyle, Social affairs