Your Favorite Movie Genre

Your Favorite Movie Genre

What’s your favorite kind of movie? Drama, action, romance, supernatural phenomenon, war movies, inspirational faith-based films, documentaries, history…

 

 

 

We all love a good story. You know why? God made us that way so He could impart His truths to us through stories.

 

How did Jesus teach the people? He told parables – stories. What’s the Old Testament filled with? …Stories.

 

Lately when reading the Word I’ve been trying to not just read words on the page, but to use my imagination to picture the stories in my mind. And guess what? Every genre of movie I listed above is right there in God’s Word!

 

God help us if we’re looking to Hollywood for comfort and entertainment without first going to God’s Word!

 

Reading the Word of God is intended to comfort, encourage and teach you. It’s not only entertainment. It’s God speaking to you!  And I’m telling you, seeing the pictures in your mind as you read brings a rich experience to your whole day, as you continue to think about what you read, asking God for the application in your life.

 

Movies might be entertaining, but they’re just a shallow imitation of God’s stories.

 

There’s a rich spiritual inheritance God wants to impart to you through His Word. The Word is where you go to discover how to live out all the Lord has planned for you; and that’s why there’s a battle raging to keep you out of it. The enemy doesn’t want you to walk in the promised blessings that come from knowing and being a doer of God’s Word. Don’t fall into satan’s trap!

 

Do you like to be entertained? I do. I love redeeming stories. God is the ultimate movie producer and director and the very best story is His story. After all, that’s what history is all about.

 

Go in true wisdom. Get in the Word. God is there waiting. G.I.T.W. (G.I.T.W. was a teaching God gave me a long, long time ago in the middle of the night one night. You can find it, any many others in the “Church Resources” – Topical Discipleship Articles. 

 

Seed of Ishmael & Isaac

Seed of Ishmael & Isaac

SEED OF ISHMAEL AND SEED OF ISAAC

THE TALE OF TWO BROTHERS

 

We live in a time of unprecedented evil. Good is being called bad and bad, good. Terrorists murder people every day. There are wars, rumors of wars, earthquakes, and famines. Christian and Jewish persecution is at an all-time high world-wide. As we witness these end-time “birth pains” (Matthew 24:8) our focus must be on the Word of God.

As a Jew who lives in Israel, we are constantly on the brink of war; war with the Palestinians, Iran, Hamas, Hezbollah, and of course ISIS, as it moves through Iraq and Syria seeking someone to devour (1 Peter 5:8). In general, the people who come against us are of Arab descent.

It’s interesting that Arabs and Jews are brothers, the seed of Ishmael and Isaac.

Where did this hatred and conflict come from, and how can we combat it today?

Let’s look at passages from the book of Genesis to try to unravel the conflict.

In Genesis 12 the Lord said to Abram …. I will make you into a great nation, I will bless you, I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, I will curse those who curse you, and all the peoples on earth will blessed through you.

 

In Genesis 15 God says to Abram: Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield; your reward will be very great. But Abram said, “Lord God, what can You give me, since I am childless… Abram continued, “Look, you have given me no offspring, so a slave born in my house will be my heir.” Now the word of the Lord came to him: “This one will not be your heir; instead, one who comes from your own body will be your heir.” 

 

When we get to Genesis 16 Sarai had born no children to Abram, so she came up with a plan for her servant Hagar and Abram to have a child. When Hagar conceived she became proud and hateful to Sarai. I believe this is where the struggles began.  Sarai began treating Hagar so harshly that Hagar ran away. The angel of the Lord appeared to Hagar in the wilderness with these instructions:

The angel said, “Go back to Sarai and be her slave. 10-11 I will give you a son, who will be called Ishmael, because I have heard your cry for help. And later I will give you so many descendants that no one will be able to count them all. 12 But your son will live far from his relatives; he will be like a wild donkey, fighting everyone, and everyone fighting him.”

This prophecy is exactly what we see today. Not only do the Muslims (the religion adopted by most Arabs) fight Christians and Jews, they fight each other!

 

In Genesis 17 God reiterates His promise that Abram would be the father of many nations. It was then that God changed his name to Abraham and promised to also give him the whole land of Canaan. Canaan was the name of a large and prosperous country (at times independent, at others a tributary to Egypt) which corresponds roughly to present-day Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and Israel.

 

Continuing in Genesis 17 when Ishmael was 13 God changed Sarai’s name to Sarah, with the promise that she’d become the mother of nations.  God promised her a son, Isaac; and God would make an everlasting promise with him and his descendants.

Isaac was born to Abraham and Sarah the following year.

In Genesis 21 we read: The child grew and was weaned, and Abraham held a great feast on the day Isaac was weaned. But Sarah saw Ishmael making fun of Isaac. 10 So she said to Abraham, “Drive out this slave with her son, for the son of this slave will not be a coheir with my son Isaac!”

What a scene! This entire story from the book of Genesis reads like a modern-day soap opera. Can you picture it?

Let’s continue in Genesis 21:11 Now this was a very difficult thing for Abraham because of his son. 12 But God said to Abraham, “Do not be concerned about the boy and your slave. Whatever Sarah says to you, listen to her, because your offspring will be traced through Isaac. 13 But I will also make a nation of the slave’s son because he is your offspring.”

 

So here we read God’s verdict in the situation. God would make a covenant with Isaac.

In ancient middle-eastern culture the firstborn son was the one who normally received a double inheritance and he was the one who’d inherit the father’s role as head of the family.

Here God was telling Abraham to turn Hagar and Ishmael away and that the inheritance would fall on Isaac; surely a root to the jealousy and hatred we see today.

But what was this all about? I’m sure God didn’t love Isaac any more than he loved Ishmael. Ishmael was going to father 12 tribes just like Isaac.

The real promise God was making to Abraham through Isaac’s lineage involved the “seed of the woman” we read about in Genesis 3:15. Through Isaac’s line one day the Messiah (Jesus/Yeshua) would be born. He would fulfill God’s promises to crush the head of the seed of the serpent. Yeshua/Jesus, that seed, would set mankind free from the power of sin and death (Romans 8:2); and therein through Abraham all the nations of the earth would be blessed.

Having this understanding, we need to embrace the Arabs, show them love and acceptance, and pray for them to understand that they too are blessed through the Messiah of Israel. By prayer we need break off all evil forces stemming from jealousy and rejection that the enemy has tormented them with all these centuries.

Let’s not be afraid to share our faith with them and show them the love of Christ that is their’s for the asking.

 

Healing of Old Wounds

Healing of Old Wounds

A few weeks ago a friend had to go into the hospital in Be’er Sheva for minor surgery.  She had asked me to take her and I said yes, knowing that I’m the only one of my friends who has access to a car. I had no idea that the Lord had a healing of my own planned in the process.

In my mind I planned to drop my friend off at the hospital and do some errands around town and then pick her up when she was done.  She told me that the doctors said she could go home that same day, so my plan seemed logical.

The morning of the surgery another friend called me who wanted to join us and I informed her of my plan. She was surprised that I wasn’t willing to sit in the hospital with my friend.  I explained my plan to her very “matter of fact” and ended the conversation.

I then opened my Bible for my daily Scripture reading and the Lord replayed my conversation loudly in my mind.  I was shocked at the selfishness and coldness that I had reacted with in the conversation I just had.  I asked the Lord what this was all about and He showed me that as a young woman I had undergone two different major surgeries alone; once when I was in college and once when I lived in California.  I lived far from home and so it seemed impossible for my family to be there.  This resulted in feelings of abandonment and fear that had taken residence in my soul and that I was completely unaware of.

The friend that wanted to accompany us to the hospital had a completely different experience with family members in hospitals when she was growing up. Hospital stays were a time for family members to gather in support of the person being hospitalized. This was so foreign to me, yet with what the Lord was showing me, I knew this is what He wanted in this situation; in order to bring healing and redemption to my soul in this area.

I repented of my original ideas and plans and sat with my friend through the entire check-in and waiting process. I came to find out it was a great comfort to her, as she had some real struggles with fear regarding the surgical process.

God in His infinite wisdom knew this and knew that we as believers are family to one another and family needs to be there to support one another, both in good times and bad.

I’m so grateful to the Lord for having exposed this darkness in my soul; and for having given me an opportunity to turn things around and be a blessing to someone else in their trials in this area.

So often God is there to show us areas in our lives where He wants to heal us; whether they’re painful memories, wounds, unhealthy habits and patterns of behavior, etc… Our job is to be attentive to His still small voice and follow His leading, even when it’s into areas that are uncomfortable and even painful to walk through. He has our best interests in mind and He wants His children set free from improper attitudes and mindsets that come from our own dysfunctional life experiences.

What a great lesson I learned that day; and as a result there were sweet times of fellowship and support that will bond the three of us together in ways that are very special and Kingdom focused.

May we all be quick to repent of our own plans, especially those that come from soul hurts and may we continue to be transformed into the image of our beloved Messiah and Lord, as He leads, guides, heals and delivers us through the story of our lives.

A Loving Foundation

A Loving Foundation

In the summer of 1998 the Lord had me memorize 1 Corinthians 13. I called it “the summer of love.” It was the time when God began to teach me about His love and the importance of it in my life, as a “believer” and disciple.

Take some time to read the passage and really “chew on and digest” its message. It teaches us about the excellence of love. Without having its message written on the tablets of our hearts we miss the very heart of what God wants to communicate to us about His eternal plan and will for our lives.

In essence it teaches us that without love all spiritual gifts and religious acts are meaningless.

In verses 4-7 God gives us a clear model of what love looks like. It outlines how God loves us and how He expects us to love one another:

“Love Is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.” (1 Cor. 13:4-7)

This is a beautiful plumb line for us to see if we’re truly obeying God’s call on our lives. Are we patient? Are we kind? It’s not always easy. We all come from imperfect childhoods, imperfect parents, imperfect relationships and imperfect ideas and notions of what love is.

Thankfully, the Bible also teaches us in 1 John 4:7 that love is from God, because God is love.

“Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love. By this the love of God was manifested in us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.” (1 John 4:7-11)

In this passage we learn that love is from God and He wants us to experience His Love, and share it.

Through our faith in Jesus/Yeshua’s sacrifice, God’s life, which emanates from His Love, lives inside of us. God’s eternal life is not only measured in duration, as life that goes on forever. It is also quality. To the extent that we receive God’s Love for ourselves then we can, in turn, share it with each other. When that happens we experience the joy that comes from the abundant, “quality” life that Jesus promised us in John 10:10.

“…I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” (John 10:10)

Just like two people in love spend time together enjoying the experience of that love, God wants us to take the time to bask in His endless supply of perfect and limitless Love.

He wants us to go higher and deeper. He wants us to be rooted and grounded in love. He wants to impart to us more of who He is through His divine Love. (Ephesians 3:17-19)

This happens through meditation and reflection on what the Word says about Love.  It happens through times of prayer and times of silent worship of God with the goal of simply declaring our love for God, and receiving His Love for us.

We need to repent of wrong perceptions of God’s Love that have been passed down to us from our parents and other relationships. God’s Love is perfect Love.

As we make room in our hearts and minds for more of God’s Love, vital foundations will be built up that enable us to share that love with each another.

Then we’ll be able to obey what Yeshua told us are the two most important commandments; to love God and to love one another (Matthew 22:36-40).  When we begin to do this we’ll see God work fantastic miracles in and through our lives and we’ll get a taste of eternal joy in our lives on earth now.

God’s Love is so awesome and multi faceted. From my experience, knowing His Love is a life long pursuit and progression, but as we do, not only are our insecurities and wrong attitudes melted away, but we’re drawn into the beauty of God’s other attributes. His awesome Holiness, Wisdom, Goodness and Perfection are all found within His Love. None of God’s attributes can be separated from each other. In light of this truth, when we walk in God’s Love with reverential fear and thanksgiving our lives are certain to mirror the life of Messiah, and isn’t that what it’s all about in the long run.

Oh, that we may reflect the glory of our beloved Savior!

Father, I pray that as people read this, their hearts and minds are flooded with the truth of Your magnificent love for them. Help them receive more of Your love and in turn be holy vessels who carry that love into the lives of the people around them. Teach them, by Your Holy Spirit, to choose to live loved and “love” and to recognize when they’re experiencing or displaying “not-love” and repent. Do this Lord so that greater blessings fall on their lives and so that You receive greater glory. It’s in Yeshua’s precious and holy name that I pray.

 

IDF STRIKES MULTIPLE HAMAS TARGETS IN RETALIATION FOR ROCKET ATTACK

IDF STRIKES MULTIPLE HAMAS TARGETS IN RETALIATION FOR ROCKET ATTACK

IDF STRIKES MULTIPLE HAMAS TARGETS IN RETALIATION FOR ROCKET ATTACK
BYANNA AHRONHEIM
06 FEBRUARY 2017 15:26

A projectile launched from the Gaza Strip on Monday morning landed in southern Israel; none hurt. The IDF has attacked Hamas targets in the Strip multiple times in retaliation for the aggression.
iaf jet

 

The IDF struck several Hamas targets over the course of Monday following early morning rocket fire and late afternoon gunfire from Gaza directed at troops.

Late Monday evening, Palestinian sources in Gaza reported a large strike in the central Gaza Strip, saying the Israel Air Force had hit a Hamas target in Shuja’iyya and that renewed artillery fire targeted Hamas outposts in the central Strip.

Ashraf Qidra, spokesman for the Hamas Health Ministry, said that two people from Khan Yunis were injured in the strikes and had been taken to the hospital.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told reporters in London, regarding the rocket attack and Israel’s response, that his directives are to respond with force to every missile attack.

“The two-and-a-half years since Operation Protective Edge were the two quietest years since the Six Day War,” he said, adding that Israel will be steadfast in responding to every attack, and will not permit a “drizzle” of missile attacks that go without a response.

Several hours earlier, IDF artillery shelled several Hamas targets in response to earlier gunfire targeting troops working on the Gaza border fence near Kissufim.

According to Palestinian reports,the IDF fired at two Hamas positions east of Deir el-Balah in the central Gaza Strip.

Palestinian Islamic Jihad leader Ahmed al-Mudalil said, “The continued Zionist aggression against Gaza cannot pass without the occupation paying a price,” the Palestinian Information Center posted on Twitter.

Earlier, the air force struck several Hamas targets in the northern Gaza Strip in response to rocket fire, the IDF stated.

The air strikes, which hit three Hamas targets in northern Gaza, came after the IDF fired tank rounds at Hamas targets in the northern Gaza town of Beit Lahiya.

“The attacks were carried out in light of the events that occurred during the last month,” an army statement said.

According to Palestinian news agency Maan, a man in his 70s, identified as Muhammad Muhammad Mousa Saadallah, a local fisherman, was lightly wounded in an air strike and hospitalized.

The Hamas-affiliated Palestinian Information Center had reported earlier that there had been no damage or injuries after “the Zionist occupation’s tanks on Monday fired two shells at Palestinian resistance locations in the northern Gaza Strip.”

Rocket alert sirens sounded early Monday morning in several southern Israeli communities in Ashkelon Regional Council, bordering the northern Gaza Strip. According to the army, a rocket hit in an open area and security forces were sweeping the area for remnants. There were no immediate reports of injuries or damage in the attack.

Both Hamas and splinter Islamic organizations have launched rocket attacks into Israel. There has been no official claim of responsibility for the rocket attack, but Israel holds Hamas responsible for all fire coming from the Strip.

Hamas spokesman Hazem Qassim told the Hamas-affiliated Al-Risalah that the group “holds the Israeli occupation fully accountable for the repercussions of the latest escalation that was launched against the Gaza Strip.”

Adam Rasgon and Herb Keinon contributed to this report.