Welcome to my online blog for our Vineyard Life Journal!
This forum IS NOT for debate or to correct each other, but to share our insights and observations. (Actually, I will be keeping a pretty tight rein on the comments section, and I will have the ability to block trolls, spammers or those who just want to stir the pot.)
Before you comment or read what I have posted, read today’s passages for yourself and complete your own S.O.A.P. exercise… (If you read mine first, it may taint what you think.)
For more info, check out this link:
Introduction to Life Journal CLICK HERE.
Click here for today’s reading: Exodus 35, 36; Acts 10
Here is my SOAP for today, Saturday, February 3, 2018
An overwhelming offering for the tabernacle and all the necessary articles!
4 “Moses said to the whole Israelite community, “This is what the Lord has commanded:
5 From what you have, take an offering for the Lord.”
20 “Then the whole Israelite community withdrew from Moses’ presence,
21 and everyone who was willing and whose heart moved them came and brought an offering to the Lord for the work on the tent of meeting, for all its service, and for the sacred garments.”
29 “All the Israelite men and women who were willing brought to the Lord freewill offerings for all the work the Lord through Moses had commanded them to do.
3 “And the people continued to bring freewill offerings morning after morning.
4 So all the skilled workers who were doing all the work on the sanctuary left what they were doing
5 and said to Moses, “The people are bringing more than enough for doing the work the Lord commanded to be done.”
6 Then Moses gave an order and they sent this word throughout the camp: “No man or woman is to make anything else as an offering for the sanctuary.” And so the people were restrained from bringing more,
7 because what they already had was more than enough to do all the work.”
Acts 10:3 “He [Cornelius] distinctly saw an angel of God, who came to him and said, “Cornelius!” 4 Cornelius stared at him in fear. “What is it, Lord?” he asked. The angel answered, “Your prayers and gifts to the poor have come up as a memorial offering before God.”
13 “Then a voice told him [Peter], “Get up, Peter. Kill and eat.” 14 “Surely not, Lord!” Peter replied. “I have never eaten anything impure or unclean.” 15 The voice spoke to him a second time, “Do not call anything impure that God has made clean.”
45 “The circumcised believers who had come with Peter were astonished that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on the Gentiles.”
I love how people gave freely and generously. Last night Doug (our Sr. Pastor) spoke about doing some renovations at our church… this is how we would love for people to respond. No need for a “capital campaign” when people give generously and freely!
Thinking about Peter’s vision, he had never eaten anything unclean, so God used food as an analogy for him to understand that the Gentiles were not “unclean” but the believers were astonished that the gift of the Holy Spirit was poured out “even on Gentiles.” (Who prior to this event were considered unclean.)
I’m wondering if Peter changed what he ate after that? Because his vision was clearly to prepare him for meeting with Cornelius, his family and close friends (who were all Gentiles).
“Matthew 15:11 “[It’s] not what goes into the mouth defiles a man, but what comes out of the mouth, this defiles a man.”
As usual, there is always much to apply… Noted that the Israelites gave freely and generously, MORE than was needed. That Cornelius’ gifts to the poor had come up before God as a memorial offering. And the God accepts anyone whose heart is open toward Him, who receive the message of Jesus.
I remember exactly when “I got it” that is, God’s heart for the poor… why it was so important… Riding with Doug in his truck through downtown Dayton, I turned to him and said that… “I get it… Why serving the poor is so important.” I felt like God had given me His heart and compassion for the poor, for those in need. The coin just… dropped. After more than 25 years of serving the poor, which isn’t even in my job description… it’s just what I do… what WE do as a church… our work OUTSIDE the church justifies and fuels what we do and WHY we do what we do INSIDE the church. What we do OUTSIDE the church, in the community is just as important as our weekend services. The great commission in Matthew 28 is to “Go.” Go into all the world… In Acts (as we already read in Acts 1:8)Jesus said, “You will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere–in Jerusalem , throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
The great commission is to GO!
Lord, I thank you for all the generous people who give freely to the Vineyard and to The Hope Foundation… May their gifts come up before you as a memorial offering. I pray for open doors to share the Gospel… that people would just “send for me” so that I could share with them the message of forgiveness and hope in Jesus.