The Atonement Study Guide
Table of Contents Topic Important Scriptures The Atonement (In the Covenant Book) The Atonement (By Gloria Henry) Grace Blood Looking into the mirror of God Prayer (By Melissa C. Pointer) Meditation Prayer (By Evelyn Pointer) Grace and Supplication Justification
Page 3 4
Important Scriptures Leviticus 23:22-32 Zechariah 8: 19-23 Hebrews 9: 22, 24-28 Hebrews 10: 1-14 Psalms 51:1-7 Isaiah 1: 16-18
Matthew 6: 16-18 Matthew 4: 1-4 John 13:1-17 Matthew 9: 14-15 Isaiah 58: 4-8 Joel 2: 12-17
The Atonement By Evelyn Pointer The Day of Atonement is held on the tenth day of the seventh month. It is our most solemn day of the year. It is a holy convocation and Sabbath of rest. We fast on the Day of Atonement and offer prayers for ourselves, our families, our church, the lost tribe of Israel and all of God’s saints throughout the world. Israel was commanded to afflict their souls, to fast, to bring an offering and to rest. To ‘atone’ means to reconcile or to restore to oneness with God. Throughout Israel’s history, many sacrifices and atonements were made for Israel, yet they continued to sin, they were not made clean. It is Christ’s blood, not the blood of animals that cleanses us from sin. All of those sacrifices for sin and atonements only pointed to what Christ did when He died for us. Christ is our sin offering, one offering was made for our sins by Christ who did no sin. Israel made many fasts throughout the year, nationally and individually. Fasting symbolizes our ability to sacrifice the lusts of the flesh and to live a clean life. Through fasting we become closer and stronger to God. Christ’s example in the wilderness teaches us that man does not live by broad alone, but by every word that proceededth from the mouth of God.
When we are born again, we kill that “old man” or life of sin and live a new life where we cease from sin. As long as we continue in this present state of battle and sacrifice and restraint, we are in a state of fasting and must continue to fast. When Christ comes, He will permanently blot out the sins on our Record book and we will enter into His feast. We will no longer fast. The Day of Atonement will turn into a joyous Feast Day.
“Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.” On the Day of Atonement we remember Christ’s blood, purity and righteousness in our decorations of red and white. We wear the colors of the watchman and the color of Christ’s blood. Our Solemn Ceremony includes: Prayer by family and $1.50 per person offering. We have songs and presentations on fasting and atonement. We have foot washing. Our fasting concludes with communion. We follow with a light dinner and fellowship.
Blood By Evelyn Pointer Memory verse: I John 5:1-6 Definition of blood- The fluid that circulates through the heart, arteries, veins and capillaries carrying nourishment, electrolytes hormones, vitamins, antibodies, heat and oxygen to the tissues and taking away waste matter and carbon dioxide. The function of blood is nutrition and respiration of tissues. Meaning it feeds the cells of the body and provides respiration, it takes waste away from the body to the bladder and bowels, and it regulates and coordinates chemically in the body. It regulates the heat of the body and it defends the body against infection. Blood is life. â€œFor it is the life of all flesh; the blood of it is for the life therof:â€? Leviticus 17:14. There is no substitute for blood. Blood is composed of about 78% water and the rest solid. When a person needs blood he has to have blood in order to live. Our bodies were wondrously made in a delicate and precise balance. Even one of the many chemicals in our blood being out of balance, whether too much or too little, can have a disastrous effect on every other part of the body. An example is the hormone insulin. Too little insulin is a cause of diabetes. Too little or too much of estrogen or testosterone has a devastating effect on the gender. Not enough of certain vitamins lead to illnesses like scurvy, blindness.
The blood feeds every cell in our body. It provides necessary oxygen for life. If anything interrupts the blood providing oxygen, death comes swiftly, in a matter of minutes. Breath is also life. The breath of life comes from God. Without properly functioning blood the breath cannot get to the cells of the body. Everything must be in perfect balance, food, oxygen and regulating the functions of the body, removal of waste and fighting infection. Any of these things that are out of order could ultimately kill the body. The blood is also a defense against death coming in to the body. Our bodies are surrounded and invaded daily by a host of bacteria and viruses through our nose, our mouths our skin and any opening in our bodies. Without the defenses in our blood we would die quickly of an overwhelming infection. A disease that causes a decrease in the protection against disease is AIDS. There are many other diseases that do this also. Anything that destroys the white blood cells will cause this. Though wonderful and amazing, the life that is in our bodies, in every cell is only common life. Common life is temporary life. It is limited in duration. The sword that will kill the body lives within the body in the form of some kind of weakness waiting to emerge at the appropriated time, if death from some devastating accident, or some other outside agent doesn’t kill you first. The life that is in our blood is common life. But the life that is in the blood of Jesus is everlasting life. This blood has no limits in its capacity because it is eternal. John 6:54 “Whoso eatheth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day.” The blood of Christ far exceeds all things that our common blood does for us. The blood of Christ not only provides all good things for our physical body, it also provides for our spiritual body. It feeds the spirit, providing nutrition. It provides the breath of life to every part of us. It removes all waste matter; anything that we don’t need or that is not good for us is removed.
It heals us of sin and death which is the disease of the spirit. Let us compare the blood of man with the blood of Christ. The blood of man provides common life to the body of flesh for a limited period of time. The blood of Christ provides eternal life and removes death. The blood of man circulates nutrients, sugar, protein, fat, vitamins ad minerals to feed the body. The blood of Christ provides his wore. As we eat the word of God, which is Christâ€™s body, then the blood circulates this to every part of our body-our spiritual body. God is food. His body is meat. Common food gives us life sustaining energy to walk, work and function. Spiritual food enables us to walk like Christ, work hard for the Lord, and function in the church. The blood of man circulates hormones that regulates and coordinates how the body functions. There are growth hormones, hormones particular to male or females, hormones that enable a woman to have a child, and many, many more. The blood of Christ regulates and coordinates how the spiritual body functions. It is like the testimonies of Jesus that show us how to walk in the law. The blood of man fights against disease. It has a host of white blood cells and antibodies to protect us. The blood of Christ fights against death and sin. Though most saint die the common death in Christ, there is no saint that will die the second death. What did Christ tell Martha? John 11:24-26. The blood of man provides platelets to heal our bodies of wounds and injuries. The blood of Christ heals our spirits. A cut is a breach in the skin. Sin also creates a breach that must be repaired. The most terrible breach was the sin of Adam that separated us from God. Christ covered the breach with his very life, like Moses who also stood in the breach when Israel sinned.
The blood of man keeps our bodies within a safe temperature. The blood of Christ keeps us spiritually hot, full of zeal for God. Not only does Christ’s blood do all of these wonderful things for our spiritual body, but at the time of the New Covenant when the law is written permanently in our hearts, it is also sprinkled on us. Christ’s blood will also be sprinkled on the books of our records that will purge us forever from sin. And it is Christ’s blood that will flow through our physical body as it is changed from a terrestrial or common body to a celestial or everlasting body. And we will be one with him. How wonderful a hope we have in Christ Jesus! But how do we get from here to there? How do we get the wonderful blood of Jesus? I Corinthians 10:16, John 6:56-57. The word communion means to share, to partake in, and to be part of. Communion brings us on one accord with God. But we know that eating unleavened bread and drinking grape juice does not make us one with God. Eating unleavened bread and drinking grape juice is a physical action that represents something spiritual, just like baptism does. How do we have spiritual communion with God? John 14:21-23. Christ prayed to his father that we might be one with him. John 17:20-22. The church is the body of Christ. Romans 12:45. When we obey God and keep his commandments we are one with him. We must eat his word every day. When we read and study we are having communion with God, we remember Christ and the law is laced in the forefront of our minds. It is important to keep the law in the forefront because man is very forgetful. In taking in his word every day we become stronger and stronger and closer and closer to God. Let us read the words that Christ spoke at the Lord’s Supper. Matthew 26:26-29, Mark 14:22-25 and Luke 22:14-20.
In each of these books Christ spoke about a testament. What is a testament? The dictionary says it is a personâ€™s last intentions, like a will. A better definition is that it is a covenant. In fact the word is used interchangeably in the bible with the word covenant. There was a first or old covenant and then a second or New Covenant or testament. Let us discuss a little history pertaining to the first covenant. After the people were delivered from Egypt they came to Mt Sinai in the third month. Moses went up into the mount and received the Ten Commandments, the law, the judgments and promises from God. Then Moses went back down, told the people what God had told him and they promised to obey him. Then Moses wrote the words of the covenant in a book. He then built an altar and the young men of the children of Israel sacrificed offerings to God at the bottom of Mt Sinai. Moses took half of the blood from the sacrifices, he read the book of the covenant again to all of the people who promised to obey God, and then he sprinkled all the people with blood, and said â€œbehold the blood of the covenant, which the Lord hath made unto you concerning all these words.â€? Then Moses and the elders of Israel went up to the base of the mountain and worshipped God, eating and drinking before him. Finally God told Moses to come up to him in the Mount and he would give him the tables of stone with the Ten Commandments that he wrote with his own hand. Exodus 24:1-12. Christ spoke of the New Testament in his blood or the blood of the New Testament. It was not the sacrifice of animals but the sacrifice that Christ made of himself, in which his blood spilled to the earth giving us the free gift, which is resurrection of all men and the opportunity to return God with conditions of obedience.
The old testament entailed laws written on stone that mankind broke. The New Testament entails laws written on the heart. The blood, when sprinkled upon us, purges our heart and our conscious or mind. Hebrew 8:6-13, Hebrews 9:13-15 and Hebrews 9:19-23.
And finally, back to my memory verse in I John 5:1-6. How does Christ come to us? He comes to us in the volume of a book. How is he born in us? Recall that we must be just like our father. As Christ came, as he was born, so must we also be born. If we believe that Jesus is Christ we are born of God, if we believe and love God we keep his commandments. If we obey and are born of God we have overcome the world. Jesus comes to us and is born in us through blood and water. We in turn are born again through blood and water and the spirit. I John 5:12 “he that hath the son hath life; and he that hath not the son of God hath not life.”
Looking Into the Mirror of God By Tamela Walls As we walk this path that leads to salvation, we must walk perfectly just as our father in heaven is perfect Matt 5:48 ‘Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect. To achieve this perfection, we must look into the mirror of God and truly be honest with ourselves. The mirror of God is not a mirror that measures youth, level of beauty, skin tone, or hair texture. These things are vanity in the eyes of God and they most certainly cannot help us get into the kingdom of heaven. The mirror of God is a mirror that will reveal unto you faults and shortcomings as they relate to the laws of God as well as the contents of your heart which are often played out in your actions. In addition, the mirror of God will give you understanding and the tools needed to help you correct your errors and walk perfectly before God. The mirror of God is the Ten Commandments, statutes, judgments, and precepts interwoven together with testimonies of Jesus Christ. In order to be perfect with God, we must compare each and every aspect of our life to the laws of God. Being true to yourself will result in your eyes being enlightened or open to the things that are contrary to how God wants and expects us to be as saints Ps. 119:105 ‘Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.’ Furthermore, by looking into this mirror and making the necessary changes you will cleanse yourself Psalms 119:9 ‘Where withal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word.’
Seeing yourself clearly can be a daunting and scary thing. No one wants to see their spots and wrinkles. But it must be done. Satan will try to convince you that God isn’t looking that deeply, that you’re really not sinning or, you just have a few “character flaws” or “vices.” But on the contrary, God is looking that deeply, deeply into your heart and at your actions. Satan is the father of pride and pride is the leading cause as to why people fail to keep the laws of God. Satan doesn’t let you in on this little secret…that shame follows pride Pr. 11:2 ‘When pride cometh, then cometh shame: but with the lowly is wisdom.’ Make no excuses or be wise in your own eyes by justifying your sins. We must fear God and depart from evil Pr. 3:7 ‘Be not wise in thy own eyes: fear the Lord and depart from evil.’ Understand that there is a blessing when you look wholeheartedly into the mirror of God and become obedient to him Ps. 119:1-2 ‘Blessed are the undefiled in the way, who walk in the law of the Lord. Blessed are they that keep his testimonies, and seek him with the whole heart.’ We must please God. But how do we know how to please him if we don’t know what he requires? Look into the mirror. We must bury that old man of sin and pride and become a new creature who is guided in the ways of God. Open your heart and look into the mirror. What do you see? The laws of God are perfect and never changing. They will convert your soul and make you a wise servant of the Lord instead of a simple minded follower of Satan. Ps.19:7 ‘The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the Lord is sure making wise the simple.’
We must be true to ourselves because our lives depend on it. We may try to fool ourselves but God already knows the truth. I will end with this scripture ‘For we all must appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that everyone may receive the things done in this body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad, II Cor. 5:10.’
Prayer By Melissa C. Pointer Our Father, which art in heaven hallowed be thine name, thy kingdom come, thy will be done…I was taught to say those words at an early age. In fact it is often one of the first spiritual things taught. I remember kneeling as a young child when my parents prayed and looking around at my surroundings. I later learned that it was wrong to be looking and i was supposed to have my eyes closed. As I grew a little older…I wondered why mother took so long and how my knees seemed to get tired. Even as a preteen at church…I have to admit with shame—that during one feast day in my uncle’s basement— every member had to pray and I fell asleep and someone had to wake me. I am happy to say I no longer engage in such bad behavior. Later I learned to pray when I was scared, when I needed help, and even before I made a major decision. I recalled hearing at church that prayer was the most solemn thing we did because we were directly communicating with God. I have the recollection of when I realized that when we are praying to God the Father. Though my mother’s class on the subject was very straightforward I had never understood that before or comprehended what that meant. That realization made me a little nervous. I have to confess I felt then and in many ways still feel that I know very little about God the Father. I know that he controls time and that he is so holy that if he looked upon this earth it would be destroyed. I recall being taught that fire flows from his throne; unlike water that flows from Christ’s throne. However he did send Christ to die for us…for me because he loved his children so much. Jesus came to earth to show us what it means to live for God. He showed us how to govern our thoughts, emotions, words and actions in multiple ways. He showed us by example; how we should conduct ourselves before God the Father. He revered his Father (and so must we).
Christ yielded to his Father without question or protest (and so must we). He also communicated with him often; before every vital decision (and so must we). This communication is prayer. Not only did he prove by example the importance of prayer but he told us directly that we had to pray to God to obtain the things that we needed. Luke 11: 9-13. (It is God the Father who sends his Holy Spirit and Mother Wisdom to us.) Jesus also said that certain afflictions could not be removed without fasting and prayer. Matthew 17: 1821. Within his word it also states that if you are devoted to God and pray with great trust in the Lord that your prayers have significant benefits. James 5: 16. Christ warned us against making a show or using vain repetitions. He told us that if we waver we cannot expect anything from God. We were notified that sinful behavior can hinder our prayers. I Peter 3: 7. This information is important because amazing results have occurred due to prayer; fire has fallen from heaven, enemies were destroyed, evil spirits were forced out of the humans they held hostage, the sun has moved back in the sky and secrets of the end were revealed. This was through the direct communication to God the Father. A communication so powerful that if you do it honestly, consistently, and with your whole being you will receives answers. Not only about spiritual but also common things as well. It is important to ask God what school you should go to or when to leave your job or if it is better to stay. Why? He knows all and sees all. He also for knew you so he knows what is best for you. Now it does not mean you will get the answer that day. It does not mean you will get what you want or what you think you need but our Father always gives us what we need.
Now prayer is intimate. There are things that I speak about in prayer that I don’t speak to anyone about except my heavenly Father. Yet that is the part of the point of prayer; it helps build our personal relationship with God. Every child needs their parent and we are no different. That intimacy we have with our Father strengthens our spirit so that we are able to survive things that would break the spirit of anyone else. It enables us to have success when many could not subsist under the same conditions. There are examples of these facts in the lives of the saints. I wanted to review over the prayers of two in particular; Sara and Tobit. Now these were children of God that lived when the first 10 tribes of Israel were removed. Tobit was a righteous man that obeyed God in spite of numerous threats and obstacles. It did not mean that his life was easy because it wasn’t. He had his possessions removed and was brought to poverty for simply burying the dead. Yet he continued to obey God and did alms. During a period of time he blinded by whiteness caused from bird dung. Now sight is an importance sense. He could no longer work and his household was brought significant poverty because of it. I am sure he was ashamed and dejected; a man who could not support his family; who could not be leaned upon but had to lean on someone else. It weighed on him like an invisible lead chain that weighed nearly a thousand pounds. Whenever I read Tobit 3: 1-7 I think of how much pain he was in; I can only say I may know a little of what he felt. A few years ago I had gain somewhat of an affliction. During one of the most inconvenient times for it to occur I lost a significant amount of cognition, memory, quite frankly intelligence. This occurred during my rotations…my last year in pharmacy school. I remember staring at the desk top and I could not put a sentence together. I remember forgetting the dose for atrovent when a medical resident asked me.
Whenever I read Tobit 3: 1-7 I think of how much pain he was in; I can only say I may know a little of what he felt. A few years ago I had gain somewhat of an affliction. During one of the most inconvenient times for it to occur I lost a significant amount of cognition, memory, quite frankly intelligence. This occurred during my rotations…my last year in pharmacy school. I remember staring at the desk top and I could not put a sentence together. I remember forgetting the dose for atrovent when a medical resident asked me. This is a dose I should never forget because I had administered to patients of all ages and sizes as a respiratory therapist. My sister would talk to me and I could not remember what she said a minute later. I had pain that could not be treated by normal pain medications. I had other symptoms that I don’t want to discuss but let’s say I know what it is like to have a burden that you wish would just go away. I suppose that is why I can relate slightly too how Sara felt. I am sure she looked normal from the outside but she had this heavy invisible weight. She did not know why all 7 of the men she had been married to died before she could be named after them. She just wanted God to remove her reproach and take pity upon her. However there is hope. God sent the angle Raphael to assist Tobias (Tobit’s son) in binding the evil spirit that tormented Sara and helped heal his father, Tobit. What I can say is my condition has forced me to rely upon God in a way I had not before. It opened my eyes to many infallible truths: that all gifts come from God. This can be physical beauty, agility, social ease and even intelligence. He can restore that which was removed because he created it. Now things have gotten better with assistance I am able to write again, I can read and comprehend. I can eat (sometimes a little too much) again. My memory is much better (though Liz may say I need to work on that). I know that one day I will completely healed and until then I will still say blessed be the name of the Lord.
Meditation by Melissa C. Pointer Meditation has been advocated by yogis, psychotherapists, new age enthusiasts, Buddhists, and other diverse groups in our society. Images of those who meditate often involve persons in an unusual body configuration, listening to instrumental music, with incense burning in the background, chanting, using a chime or even humming to themselves. A common definition for meditation is when a person focuses their thoughts on: reflect on or ponder over. To plan or project in the mind: intend purpose. Does meditation have a place or purpose in our lives spiritually? Let us consult the scriptures. Let us all read Psalms 1: 1-2 together: â€ŚBlessed is the man that walked not in the counsel of the ungodly, Nor standeth in the way sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he Meditate day and night. Meditation is a time period in which our thoughts dwell upon God, in which we are focused on his word, his gospel, his salvation, and the hope he has given us. It is a time period in which we can obtain great insight into Godâ€™s word. Psalm 119: 97-99. It is the spiritual form of placing the word of God as frontlets to keep you focused so that you do not stray. This too was commanded by God. Deuteronomy 6: 7-9 (guides on a horses eyes to keep them focus)
Meditation is not easy for me. I often mentally process multiple things at once. For example when I am in Pilates class I canâ€™t just focus on just the moves, I listen to the pretty music, I worry about my outfit, watch my form, think about when I should paint my toe nails, think about my breathing, try to decide what to wear for work, make sure I do the correct amount of repetitions, and yes I feel relax. It is rare for me to be single minded about one task. As a child I was easily distracted; I would look out of the window and storylines would enter my head and I would dwell on that than the lesson at hand. Does that mean that I cannot meditate? No. I can do all things through Christ that strengthen me. When God gives a commandment he also gives the ability and power to fulfill it. Meditation is required by all children of God. Philippians 4:13 Joshua 1: 8 I did not list my inherent difficulties to fulfill this requirement to justify not meditating. Instead I wanted to show that though this is difficult for me that I know that I can and must meditate to be a pleasing offering unto God. It can be said that there are many forms of meditation and that everyone at sometime has meditated. There are those whose thoughts are perpetually on obtaining riches and maintaining power: Wall Street moguls, governmental officials, and criminals from diverse backgrounds. The medical student that eats, drinks, and breathes his gross anatomy is constantly meditating on the best strategy to pass examinations and how to absorb the enormous amounts of material he is required to know. The constant mental energy used toward a specific goal affects their words and actions. I noticed this when I was at school. So much mental energy was being utilized by nearly every pharmacy student: how best to study for exams, prioritizing class material, reading volumes of chemistry and, calculating laborious equations, I even listened to lecture material for hours while cooking, walking, and driving.
Our thoughts directed our conversation and our actions. Students would spend hours discussing exams after they were given, talk about the presentations they would give and even discuss their class work on holidays. We needed to be focused; our thoughts had to be directed so that we could successfully finish our degrees. I have listed common and even wicked meditation to prove that everyone has meditated and that it has a profound affect on what we say and what we do. Our omnipotent father, commanded us to meditate and because everything that God requires us to do is for our benefit, meditation has critical benefits for us as well. God knows that there is a constant battle in our minds that common activities often consume significant quantities of our time, and that Satan tries to manipulate us through our emotions both day and night. Meditation when properly done, will force you to remember God, his law, how he has blessed you, and his authority over you. [It is where we focus our thoughts] It is this communication with the Spirit that will strengthen our intimate bond with the throne of God. Romans 12: 1-2. In verses 2 it is the renewing of your mind that will catalyze a change in you that will make you an acceptable offering to God. This is why it was written in Joshua and echoed in the psalms that this form of communication with God will strengthen you and give you good success. Evidence of this is found in our fatherâ€™s holy law. Let us review the commandment given to Joshua son of Nun. Joshua 1: 8 â€ŚThis book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but Thou shall meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success
Even greater detailed information about the profound effects of meditation can be found in Ecclesiasticus 39: 1-3, 5-8. It should be noted that meditation will make you closer to God and less likely to sin. Just as meditating on wicked thoughts move you away from God and increase your chances of committing a wicked action or speaking foolishly. Consider the instruction of our Savior that if a man should lust after a woman he has committed adultery or that you should not let the sun set on your wrath. These parameters were set to prevent us from corrupting ourselves and making ourselves estranged from God. Let us evaluate additional passages of our Lordâ€™s word: Ecclesiasticus 31: 1, Mark 7: 14-15, 2123, Ecclesiasticus 30: 21-23 II Corinthians 7: 10 [this is concerning gladness of obeying God], Ecclesiasticus 30: 24. Now that we understand the importance and influence our thoughts have we should discuss ways we can reduce wicked thoughts [for Satan constantly sends them] and how to meditate upon God properly. Everyone knows that meditation can and should occur when we fast and on Sabbath days. However you can add meditation to your worship service: for example it is one thing to quickly read a passage, however think about what the words mean and how you should apply that to your life. Just try it for 5 minutes, read the passage, honestly evaluate yourself [are you fulfilling Godâ€™s measurement, are you giving your best effort, what can you do for God to tell him that you love him and are grateful for all the blessings he has given you]. You may surprise at how 5 minutes in the morning and 5 minutes in the evening of focusing upon God [besides your regular worship service] will affect your view, your words, and your actions.
Now another way you can add meditation to your service is while you are singing. Think about the meaning behind the verses. For example let us review to songs from the hymn book: Farther along and Hold to God’s Unchanging Hands. Tempted and tried we’re oft made to wonder. Why it should be thus all the day l Long, while there are others living about us, Never molested tho’ in the wrong Farther along we’ll know all about it , farther along we’ll understand why Does this song correspond to any particular scripture? For me it was psalm 73: 32. Here David described his frustration with what he believed to an unfair situation until God gave him enlightenment. Is there or was there a part of your life that makes you relate to the message? What is this saying to us the children of God? That we may not understand why we have to go through certain things but we will gain understanding later. As you can see just singing and thinking about what the words mean is a form of meditation. Let us try another song Hold to God’s unchanging hands Trust in him who will not leave you, whatsoever years may bring… Covet not this world’s vain riches, that so rapidly decay; seek to gain The heavenly treasures, they will never pass away. You must hold his Hands God’s unchanging hands… build your hopes on things eternal
There is a great deal information hear. What scriptures does this bring to mind? For me I thought of Isaiah 55: 2. Here the futility of putting best effort in carnal activities is described perfectly. It reminds me what our savior said about having your treasures where they cannot rust or be stolen. Matthew 6: 19-21 It reminds of what Solomon said about vanity and that God does not change. It also makes me reevaluate myself where do put my faith, hope, and trust in. A better indication is where do I give my best effort, what drives me, what part of my life do I make the greatest sacrifices? The answer to the latter questions will allow me to know if I have placed my faith, hope, and trust in the appropriate place. This is what meditation is about: it makes a closer with God, it is an excellent weapon against distractions, it strengthen us spiritually, and it helps us to see ourselves more clearly and to see God more clearly. Now you may be like me and find it difficult to focus at first. Well there is a way to get around the evil spirit of distraction. Remember our father is merciful and if you are willing you will discover methods and tools to aid you in accomplishing all things that are pleasing God. There is a method that I found to be 100% effectiveâ€”playing spiritual music while reading the bible. Whenever a distractive thought wanders in my mind the music helps me refocus every time. I have also found that if possible you should find a quiet place in your home to contemplate on God. Others have told me that they find working on music, artwork, essays, or walking are methods they use to aide in their meditation with God. I have complied a short list of suggestions to aid meditation: 1) start a routine, 2) set a time period, 3) find a quiet place if possible, 4) employ music to help you focus, 5) practice makes perfect 6) Remember this is your time with God that will strengthen your mind, heal your spirit and enlighten you.
Often we have multiple distractions during the day that consume our thoughts however we are not without assistance. God is merciful and if you are willing you will discover the tools to aid you in all things that please God • Music • Remove your home of distractions • Practice makes perfect • Start a routine • Set aside a time period This is part of our communion, fellowship with God it is precious, and it will heal us. Meditation strengthens our thoughts consider the helmet of salvation.
Prayer by Evelyn Pointer God is in the heavens and we are here on earth. The conditions that we live in are perilous, violent and full of sorrows. Our lives are short and we have very little control over what happens to us or to our families. We have been given a chance of salvation and eternal life if we can overcome, and live a life of chastity and restraint. Yet from the time of our birth we were bombarded with a constant onslaught within our minds and within our flesh from the sources of evil. We see evil and we hear evil daily, hourly. But God is in heaven. How can we communicate with him? We cannot know him except through the Holy Spirit. Without the Holy Spirit we may as well be deaf and blind because the evidence of God’s existence will be beyond our perception. And we won’t know how to obtain him or how to find him. When the Holy Spirit comes to us he enlightens us an guides us to Jesus and to the Father. He speaks with a gentle voice and he comes into our hearts. But Satan never stops, the onslaught of evil continues, we can be tripped up at every turn if we are not careful, if we do not watch and pray. Luke 12:37-40. Luke 21: 34-36; Mark 14:38. Vigilant. The word means to be attentive and vigilant to be alert.. The opposite is to be asleep. If we are asleep we cannot avoid danger. God has instructed us in what we must do to be saved. The Wisdom of God calls us to follow diligently after instructions of Jesus Christ, the word of God, is proven within us. We can overcome, as Christ overcome. Christ told us to pray. One of the most effective weapons that we have in our arsenal against the forces of evil is prayer. Prayer is powerful. Prayer can heal; it can change hearts and minds, it can protect, it can lead to greater knowledge and understanding. James 5:`6. Prayer is the method by which we communicate with God in the most direct and personal way. Definition for prayer— prayer is a most solemn communication and humble entreaty to God. An entreaty is a solemn request.
We must ask God for the things we need and to help us made important decisions. We must acknowledge God in all our ways so that he can direct our path. Jesus said seek and ye shall find, ask and it shall be given to you. He also said to seek first the kingdom of heaven. How can you ask God for something? You cannot call him on a cellphone or send him an e-mail. You have to pray. Christ taught us how to pray. Our Father without in heaven, hallowed be thy name. We Pray exactly as Christ instructed us to. Christ prayed directly to God the Father, and so must we. The proper method of addressing God in prayer is the Lordâ€™s Prayer includes everything essential. Later on teach them to follow the Lordâ€™s Prayer with their own personal supplications, as we all do. As soon as children are able to talk, they should be taught at home and taught to pray. Pray with them at night and before they go to school. This will teach them at night and be gone they go to school. This will teach them that prayer is a most important and integral part of their life. We cannot pray in the manner that we choose. God has already taught us how to pray. Effectual: producing or capable of producing the desired effect [penicillin is effectual in treating some pneumonia] fervent: earnest, ardent, intensely. Prayer is our most solemn communication. I say most solemn because it is not the only way we communicate with God. When we sing and praise him we are communicating with him. Whenever we come before him on the Sabbath day, our testimony is communicating with him. Therefore use should be careful in all that we do and say before God. God is Almighty and all powerful. The Lord is in his holy Temple, let all the earth keep silence before him. God is not a man who will just listen to what a person says and accepts its.
God rends your heart, your mind and your soul. When you pray it is not only what comes out of your mouth that is important; but what is in your heart. God does not accept the prayer of the wicked. It is an abomination Proverbs 28: 9. God will not forgive you of your sins, if you are holding things against your brethren. You must forgive first, and then God will forgive you. Mark 11: 25-26. When we pray, we must pray in the Spirit. That means that the Holy Spirit directs you, that you being sincere, humble and faithful the Holy Spirit will take your prayers and purge them like fire to be a sweet odor before the Lord. Ephesians 6:18. Romans 8: 26-27. We have to be faithful, believe that God will hear you and give you your request. Mark 11:24. When we pray we must be like Christ who also prayed for his enemies. Matthew 5:44. Christ prayed all of the time when he was on earth. He prayed for himself even though he was God. He humbled himself and kneeled to the Father. He prayed for the apostles and he prayed for us. The Ancient Fathers prayed, David prayed constantly through the psalms. Solomon prayed for all of Israel, even to our times and for the Gentiles. The prophets prayed. All of their prayers were prayers of faith that the Lord would come again and remember his people, they prayed for us and God will honor their requests. We must also pray for ourselves and our children. How often she used we pray? Once a day, twice a day, three times? The bible says to pray without ceasing. I Thess 5:12. We must pray all of the time. We must never give up. Just because God has not healed my son yet, should I stop praying? No, I must never stop. Romans 12:12. We are to be instant in prayer. “Instant” does not mean to do something right away. It means our earnest, urgent and persistent entreaty. Don’t give up. Christ taught us this in a parable. Luke 18: 1-8. God’s eyes are always on us and his ears hear our prayers. I Peter 3:12.
When we pray women should cover their heads. However you must pray whenever you need to. There have been times when I had to pray and I couldn’t cover my head. An example of this could be when there is an accident, sudden injury or distress. It is better to pray there not to pray. However when possible cover your heads. Men are told not to cover their heads, but if he has a hat on at work or in the winter time and he needs to pray, he must pray. Christ told us to go to our closet and pray that we be not like the hypocrites who pray standing in the streets so that they are seen of men to pray. When I was a little girl I thought this meant to pray in a clothes closet, which was jam packed with so many clothes I could barely fit. The word closet has a different meaning now than it had then. The dictionary definition is “a small room for privacy.” Christ was against praying as a public display so that people can think you are holy. This prayer is for the eyes of man. it is not sincere. Does that mean we can only pray by ourselves; of course not. They always prayed in the temple and in the synagogues. Jesus himself prayed before the people and among his disciples. St. John 17 is a prayer before his apostles prior to his death. A very large part of the worship service in Israel was prayer led by the Priests. Jesus said that the temple was a house of prayer for all people. Matt 21:13. We can pray in families and in small groups for where there are 2 or 3 are gathered God is there to hear our requests. Matt 18: 19-20. We kneel in prayer before God we also stand and lift up our hands. I Tim 2:8. We also have a special prayer of faith accompanied with and anointing to heal the sick. James 5:14-15. And finally prayer is especially strong accompanied with fasting. Fasting strengthens with Fait and Faith empowers our prayers before God. Jesus even fasted for forty days. Certain evil spirits are too powerful to remove except through prayer and fasting. Matt 17: 17-21.
I conclude by saying our most solemn communication to God is by prayer. When we pray we pray directly to God the Father, saying the Lord’s Prayer just as Christ taught us to. We must pray in the spirit with a sincere heart full of faith. We must forgive others in order for our prayers to be accepted. We humble ourselves to God when we pray. We are to pray without ceasing, never giving up or losing hope that God will answer our prayers. We must teach our children the Lord’s Prayer and how to pray in all seriousness and solemnity. We must watch and pray and fast and pray. Prayer is powerful it can heal and protect and strengthen us. We pray alone, with our families, in small groups and in church. We can stand in prayer lifting up our hands. The “prayer of Faith” is a special anointing and prayer by the elders for the sick. Let us give full attention to our prayers, particularly as we are coming up to the Day of Atonement.