Category Archives: Bible Study

1st Thessalonians Overview (other people)

I found three main groups of people and one “other” spiritual being. The spiritual being had the least amount of mentions, but I have found that the Word of God is true. It teaches us….

our struggle is not against flesh and blood but against rulers, ,against powers, against world forces of this darkness, against spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. Ephesians 6:12

Therefore, the first “other” that I will list will be the “spiritual force of wickedness’

Satan, the tempter: 2:18 The enemy of YHVH is directly responsible for hindering the authors from coming to the Thessalonians. So often I hear believers sigh, “It must not be God’s will for me to do what I thought He called me to.” Are you sure? Some of the most powerful men of God were hindered from what they knew God called them to but they understood that God is not frivolous in His directions. We have a powerful enemy who loves using us to prevent God’s will from being accomplished.

Satan has more then one tool in his kit. He is the tempter (3:5). He put up every roadblock possible to keep the authors for going back to check on the Thessalonians. It must have been an exhausting battle for them. It seems that they came to the end of their rope emotionally. They began to worry that the church had fallen to the tricks of the tempter causing the work of the authors to be in vain. (I will not leave you at the end of Paul and Silas’s rope, God, who is greater then the enemy, found a way to get a message to His worried messengers, filling them with joy which is our strength!)

Mom and dad, stand firm in prayer! You know about the temptations presented to your precious child. God is greater then the tempter!

Satan’s minions, a.k.a men who are not believers. The enemy will use whoever does not commit their life to the Almighty. There are two categories of unbelievers in 1st Thessalonians. They are Men (or unbelieving gentiles) and Traditional Jews. 

In general, many in the church came from the unbelieving gentiles. The authors prayed for the the Thessalonians ministry to unbelievers, asking that the Thessalonians love for them would abound. But they remind the church of the changes that have taken place in the lives of the believes, they are supernatural changes. He reminds them that gentiles (unbelievers) are full of lustful passion (4:5). They reject God (not men 4:8), and insist that there will be peace and safety yet will be destroyed when an inescapable destruction comes upon them (5:3). Instead of being filled with the Spirit, they spend their nights in drunkenness (5:6).

And such were some of you, but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of The Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God. 1 Corinthians 6:11

They are beloved unbelievers. We are to love them, to pray for them, but not to be like them.

Unbelieving Traditional Jews: The assembly of the Thessalonians began in the synagogue. For most of history the Jewish people were the only people on earth who could know the Almighty. Anyone who wanted to know the Creator had to come to synagogue to learn The Way of God. But now a line has been drawn in the sand. Even though two of the authors were Jewish men, and one of them is half Jewish, they warn the Thessalonians that bloodline is not the way to the Almighty (John 1:12-13). Right away we are reminded that it was the Jews who killed Y’shua (Jesus) (2:15) as well as God’s prophets (men who speak for God). It was the Jews who drove the authors out of every place they went. Not only are they hostel to everyone else (2:16) they are not pleasing to God Himself. The wrath of God will come upon them to the uttermost.

I need to say that it is not Jewish blood that makes men good or bad. The best teacher I have ever had is a Jewish man who believes in Y’shua-Jesus as his Messiah. All things being equal, I have found that a believing Jew has more to teach me about God then any other teacher. They still have an advantage.

Then what advantage has the Jew? Or what is the benefit of circumcision? Great in every respect. First of all, that they were entrusted with the oracles of God. What then? If some did not believe, their unbelief will not nullify the faithfulness of God, will it? May it never be! Rather, let God be found true, though every man be found a liar, as it is written, “THAT YOU MAY BE JUSTIFIED IN YOUR WORDS, AND PREVAIL WHEN YOU ARE JUDGED.” Romans 3:1-4 quoting Psalm 51:4

The final “others” category are Other Believers Not everyone is against us! The first “other believers” the authors mention are in Macedonia (Yugoslavia) to their north and Achaia (Western Greece) to their south-east. Apparently the authors went to share the Gospel with them, but the Thessalonians were a step ahead of the authors. These believers gave a positive report to the authors concerning the reception they experienced in Thessaloniki (1:7). Having known the Thessalonians they gave the authors information about how they turned from the icons (idols) of local gods to serve the living and true God (1:9) and how they now wait for the Son of God to return (1:10). What an amazing testimony!

Sometimes people are led to believe that if they give their life to Jesus, they will be blessed in their finances, they will be healthy and other people will be falling all over themselves because they want what you have. Phooey! You gain eternal life, but you also gain a sworn enemy who is not above using the people you love and trust to recapture you. Though you are safe in Jesus, if he can make you feel the way Paul and Silas felt, that their work was in vain and that there prayers were not answered, then like them you will feel discouragement and make the enemy sneer (which is as close as I imagine him coming to a smile). Stand firm, you are not alone. The authors tell the Thessalonians that they are like the believers in Judah because they suffer at the hands of their countrymen (this must have been painful for Paul to write) (2:14) Even so, seek what is good for all (5:15)

Those who sleep in Jesus: This is the final category of “other people” and it is a comfort to me. I suppose the first believers were 180 degrees opposite of modern believers. They were watching for the return of the Son of God. I think modern believers have lost that edge. But how can those who have died watch for the return of Jesus? They already see Him and will be coming with Him (3:13). In case they did not catch it the 1st time, Those who sleep (died) in Jesus, God will bring when Jesus comes (4:14) We who are still alive in Jesus will not proceed them (4:16). You may ask, will they be pure spirit creatures like God himself? No, the dead in Christ will rise first (4:16) THEN those who remain will be “caught up” with them (4:17).

October 29, 2017 Jenny e il Piccolo There it is in a nutshell. Our battle is against a being from the Spirit realm, but he is dark and evil. He is the prince of the world, and the people of the world are his toys, he uses them however he is able to defeat Almighty God. He thought he could defeat Him by tempting the first flesh and blood Ben Elohiym (Son of God), Adam. But The Almighty sent His only begotten Ben Elohiym (Y’shua-Jesus) to pay for our sin and through Him, be bought back as a Ben Elohiym (child of God). Life might be a rocky road but we have a sure reward in Heaven and power beyond what most of us can imagine as we walk in this world.

Debs in Everett, Washington… encouraging you to go encourage someone in Jesus today (2 Corinthians chapter 4). Picture from Jenny e il Piccolo

On my way to do an overview of Y’shua-Jesus in this epistle.

You can find my overview on 1 Thessalonians AUTHORS HERE.

My overview of 1 Thessalonians Recipients can be found HERE



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1 Thessalonians: recipient overview

1 Thessalonians map
Who are the recipients of 1st Thessalonians? There is much to learn about them just by isolating references to them and examining those in this epistle. I’ll start there. There are also details that help explain who the Thessalonians are in Acts 16 and 17. I’ll add those later. (You should read those exciting chapters for the big picture)

Who are the Thessalonians? The authors call them Brethren (1:4, 2:1, 9, 13, 5:4) which is the same tag used for Timothy (3:1-6). This tells me that they were equal in the sight of God to the authors, family. It is said that the “Word” came to them with power, IN the Holy Spirit. It wasn’t just philosophy as it was in Athens (Acts 17:22-32). How was the power manifest? The word came to them with tribulation (Acts 17:5) IN the joy of the Holy Spirit!! They turned from the icons of the local gods (idols, (Ephesians 6:2) to serve The God of gods and to wait for His Son to return. Unlike the Corinthian church, the Thessalonians believed that the Word they received was the Word of God himself (1 Corinthians 3:3-5). They are known as people of faith and of love (3:6) which was tested in suffering (2:15, Acts 17:5f) and as those who are very dear to the authors (2:8). They stood firm in the Lord (3:8) while loving those known as “brethren” (4:9) The book of Acts adds the mix of people. Paul first spoke in the Synagogue of the Jews (Acts 17:2) to people who worshiped YHVH, where there were Jewish people (Romans 3:1-2), God-fearing men (Non-Jewish men who followed the Scripture in every way except physical circumcision… which is why they are not known as proselytes, example, the centurion of Matthew 8:5-13) and some of the leading women of the area (Acts 17:4)

Where in the world (and the Spirit Realm) are they? Their synagogue (Acts 17:1-2) was located in the seaport city of Thessaloniki (have a peek at the map at the top of the page) That was their earthly location. In the spirit realm they were IN God and Y’shua-Jesus (1:1, John 14:19-24), IN the presence of YHVH (God the Father 1:3) and IN tribulation with the Holy Spirit (1:7, John 14:26).

What are they known for? Right away they are remembered by the authors for “their work of faith” The word work is from the Jewish Mitzvot, which is fulfilling the Torah. The same verse (1:3) tells me that they labor (physical work) in love with steadfast hope IN the Lord Jesus. They have power because they are IN the Holy Spirit (1:7). The Word of God came to them in Tribulation (Acts 17) but that could not stop them. The Word “sounded forth” from them (1:8). They are a community, a mix of bloodlines, who serve the creator instead of the local “principalities” (Ephesians 6:2) while waiting for the return of the Son of God whom they have only met “by faith”. The authors tell them that on the one hand, they are pleasing to God, but on the other, encourage them to excel in this (4:1). They are reminded that they know the commandments (4:2) and acknowledged for loving all the Brethren (5:14)

Problems that need addressing. I need to read between the lines a bit to address this question.

  • “be sober” is the exhortation to the “sons of day and light (5:4, and 8)
  • the “unruly” need to be admonished (5:14)
  • the “faint hearted” (encourage them 5:14)
  • the “weak” need help (5:14)
  • “despising prophetic utterances” Like the modern church, they did not trust anyone who said they had a word from the Lord. (5:20) The Thessalonians are encouraged to “examine carefully” what they are told. Hang on to what is good (in line with the Word), abstain from every form of evil (1 John 4:1-4)

The Thessalonians are a light in a dark world. They need to live as “children of the light” in the world, but not of it. Sounds like a good word for me, today

Debs in Everett, WA on October 18, 2017


Our brave, goofy, dearly loved Bomber passed to the next life on Tuesday, October 17. We cannot stop crying. He was ready but I was not. He was such a gentle, loving soul yet more then once he was ready and willing to “terrier-up” putting himself between me and danger. Always by our side, he was Chris’ dog and camping buddy but he loved all of us (even though Chris was his hands down favorite). He walked through the nights with Jason when he was transitioning from who he was to who he is. He delighted in grumping with Ray, the other old man, about who gets how much space on the bed. He usually let Ray win but never skipped the routine. My sweet Rudy is not known for being brave or for making friends, Bomber was brave for him and was his only dog-friend. Me? I’m having a really difficult time, everywhere I went he was there, now he is not. If there are horses in heaven then surly there are dogs too. Good by sweet Bomber-Dear, I’ll see you on the other side. Mom.

My overview of the authors of 1 Thessalonians can be found by clicking HERE

Next up is an overview of the “other people” mentioned in this epistle (an epistle is a teaching letter)

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1 Thessalonians: author overview

My Wednesday night Bible study is doing First Thessalonians this year. Doing an overview is not part of what we do as a group but I personally find this helpful. I want to know, WHO wrote this book? WHAT are their circumstances and motivation for writing and WHERE were they when they wrote? Discovering the answers from their own hand helps me understand the message of the book. Finding the answers is not madness, it comes from method.

1 Thessalonians Author 1
I start my author overview by marking every reference to the author(s) and the verb connected to their name or pronoun with blue pencil. This makes it easier for me to go back to make my list about the author. My first list is all the information I find connected to their name. I like to put my list on one page so that I can analyze it without needing to flip paper to see everything. The first thing I will be looking for is, who is (are) the author(s), what do they say about themselves in general?

1 Thessalonians Author 2 There are three different people who credit themselves with authorship of this book. They are … (author information is from my past studies, not information pulled from this book)

Paul: a zealous man, raised by a family from Tarsus who were wealthy enough to send him to religious school in Jerusalem. He was raised by Rabbi’s from the time of his bar mitzvat. Rather then being a boarding school brat, he excelled in his studies. As a man, he became a leading member of TEAM TRADITION, persecuting any Jewish person who strayed from religion as he understood it. On a trip to Damascus, outside of the Roman empire, he had a dramatic confrontation with Jesus. From that day on, he was a believer in Y’shua-Jesus.

Sivanus: Very little is know about Sivanus or how he became a believer. Tradition says that he was one of the seventy whom Jesus sent out to witness to the Jews. If so, then he was a follower of The Way long before Paul. He may have even been one of the believers whom Paul persecuted

Timothy: This young man had a Jewish mother and a Greek father. His mother and grandmother were of the faith. Many believe that it was Paul rather then his mother or gram’ma who introduced him to salvation. However he happened to come to faith, he had an upbringing that was nearly the opposite of Paul’s yet Paul calls him his brother and fellow worker (1Thess 3:2)

What do they say about themselves? They are men who have been approved by God (as diverse as their backgrounds are). They are gentle, devout, upright, and blameless (1Thess 2:5, 10) They say they are constantly thankful to God (2:13). Thankfulness is important because it is an acknowledgement of God’s will for our lives. Next I am shocked by the statement that they are  “destined for affliction”. This is important next to their approval by God. The affliction they suffer could be wrongly interpreted as God’s rejection. Something I need to keep in mind when it seems as if nothing is going according to plan… or maybe worse, falls short of the expectations of others. The authors  are men who rejoice because of the Thessalonians, who are comforted by the faith of others and who pray with gusto. They also request prayer for themselves.

1 Thessalonians Author 3 This letter is to the Thessalonians but that is not where the authors are when they write. The text tells me that they are in the Greek city of Athens, not a very happy place for the Apostle Paul.

What are the authors circumstances? Chapter 2 starts out telling me that they have suffered yet they spoke the Gospel boldly to the Thessalonians when they were there. Now they are hindered by Jews who do not want to see gentiles excel at their own religion. They are hindered by Satan himself in their desire to return to Thessaloniki (the name of the city of the Thessalonians). But again they make sure I know that they thank God as acknowledgement of His will. Even so, they say that they are at the end of their endurance and are afraid (3:5), yet comforted by the news Timothy brings them after his visit to their Thessalonian church. They encourage the believers that, even though they themselves are destined for affliction, that is not their final destiny. They watch for Y’shua to return knowing that their ultimate destiny is eternal Salvation. This is their motivation to Live for Him (5:9-10). In fact, living for God may be the motivation for writing this letter. Most of chapters 4 and 5 are about how to live for God in this world.

The book closes letting us know that none of us are alone. The authors ask for prayer and for the letter to be read to other churches.

Today has been tough. The days ahead are days when we need to encourage each other to “stand firm” (the meaning of A’men) on the Word of God.

Debs in Everett WA, October 14, 2017 …who is about to start her overview of the recipients.

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Morning Devotions: Unmasking Jesus

Can Jesus be found in the “Old” Testament? Yes, once you know where he has been hidden by the translators. I do not think less of those brave translators who spilled their blood to bring the words of the Almighty to me and you in a language we can understand. There were some things the Almighty hid from them. There were no conspiracies in their life’s work.

September 20, 2017

O LORD, in Your strength the king will be glad, and in your salvation how greatly he will rejoice!

You have given him his heart’s desire, and You have not withheld the request of his lips.     Selah.

For You met him with the blessings of good things; You set a crown of fine gold on his head.

He asked life of You, You gave it to him, length of days forever and ever.

His glory is great through Your Salvation, Splendor and majesty You place upon him.

For You make him most blessed forever; You make him joyful with gladness in your presence.     Psalm 21:1-6 nasu

Did you see Jesus? He is mentioned twice by name and once more as the “Alpha and Omega” in this passage. Let me unmask Him for you.

Salvation. The Hebrew name of our Jesus is Y’shua. The name Y’shua has become a popular way to call upon the name of the Lord in this era. The name is almost always translated from Hebrew as “salvation,” do you see him now?

21:1  O YHVH (LORD) in Your strength the king (David) will be glad, and in Y’shua (Jesus) he will rejoice!

David said that in Y’shua he rejoiced! That is the first unmasking.

21:5 His glory is great through Your salvation, splendor and majesty You place upon him.

Salvation. David recognizes that his worth (glory: a manifestation of deity) is because of Y’shua. Through the ages there have been many kings of multiple nations. Few of them are remembered the way David is. What sets him apart? He tells us that it was Y’shua; it wasn’t the “things”. I agree with him. Psalm 21 declares that YHVH gave David “good things” including the crown of Israel (verse 3). But the “things” were not the desire of David’s heart. Most people fix their eyes on the “things” just as Eve fixed her eye on the beautiful fruit of the forbidden Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. Like Eve, we miss what is really valuable, and like Adam, we want what someone else seems to have instead of seeing that our God really is our greatest treasure.

21:6 For You make him most blessed forever; You make him joyful with gladness in Your presence,

‘ot The Aleph and Tav. Have you ever wondered why Y’shua-Jesus said that He is the Alpha and Omega? I have heard a lot of preachers and teachers come up with a lot of different reasons. I will tell you what I know, you can decide if the facts lead to my conclusion.

The “New” Testament sitting in your lap has been translated from the Greek language. The first and last letter of Greek is the Alpha (we get our Latin letter A from it). The last letter of the Greek alphabet is Omega. Track with me… Salvation (Y’shua-Jesus) is from the Jews. The Jewish language is Hebrew. Throughout the Hebrew Scripture you will find a little word, ‘ot. That word is spelled with the first letter of the Hebrew alphabet, Aleph, and the last letter of Hebrew, Tav.  When Aleph-Tav is translated to Greek it became Alpha and Omega. Most English translators simply transliterated Alpha and Omega instead of translating it to A and Z. They must have known it was important but did not make the connection.

Hebrew is a unique language. Letters in Greek and English represent sounds. When the letters are put together into words, we readers are able to “sound them out” and speak the written word. Hebrew letters are different. Most of them represent sounds, but not all of them. Aleph, the first letter, does not represent a sound. That is why it is often represented with an apostrophe instead of a letter. (the “o” in this word is from the vowel marker, not from the Aleph) Hebrew words are pictographs of ideas. Aleph represents “Almighty God”. Tav does represent a sound, it is the same sound as our letter “t” but there are two Hebrew letters that make that sound. The more important aspect of Tav is “a sign” from the Almighty. Tav is the cross! When you put them together, you can say that the Aleph and Tav are “the God of the cross” (…and this shall be a sign, the ‘ot, for you… Luke 2:12; the angel was telling the shepherds who the babe is. The sign was not the swaddling cloths, that was just how they would distinguish this baby from all the other babies in Bethlehem)

Three times in the Revelation, Y’shua-Jesus told us that He is the ‘ot, the Aleph-Tav, The God of the cross. But what does that have to do with Psalm 21:6?

The Almighty kept the ‘ot a mystery. You can find it all over the place in the “old” testament. Translators did not know what to do with it. It is in Genesis 1:1 but it is not translated into English. Plenty of times it has been translated “the”. My Hebrew teacher told me that it is usually the “definite article,” but not always. He believes in Jesus the Messiah (a big deal for a Jewish man). When I asked him about the Alpha and Omega, he sat back. I could see him making the connection as he thought it through, but he did not answer me at that moment. It seems that the Almighty kept ‘ot  a mystery to more then just the translators. It is mistranslated in Psalm 21:6 as “with” in kj. In Hebrew the phrase is ‘et-panneykaaPanneykaa, or Paniym (H6440) means “the face” and is translated “presence” or “countenance” in kj. Strong’s says that the word is plural but is always used as a singular word (like many of the words for deity). David says, ‘YHVH (You) makes David (him-the king) joyful with gladness in ‘et-panneykaa (‘et because of a different vowel marker) in the face of the Alaph-Tav is joy! Have you experienced it?

In His presence is fullness of joy!!!

Debs in Everett, Wa. September 21 (Rosh Hashannah) 2017

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Moments of Doubt

Tuesday, the day before school starts and I was not getting up to go to a teachers meeting. That is never going to happen for me again. I almost couldn’t breath. This is no way for a warrior to start her day.

20170907_061744 Strong coffee and a little bit of time on Face Book. Does anyone care about me? The Almighty answered me… FROM FACE BOOK! His answer came from “Hebrew For Christians” by John Parsons, who posted…

What are you seeking today? The Lord says, “Seek Me that you may live” (Amos 5:4). If you feel empty today, ask God to feed you with His life giving food. Ask Him for energy, power and strength. Seek YHVH and His goodness. He is faithful and true and will surely answer the sincere heart. You will seek Me and find Me when you seek Me with all your heart.” (Jeremiah 29:13)

Well that was nice.

Into the word, which happened to be John chapter 4; I thought it was about some woman at a well. Turns out that it is about Y’shua (Jesus) and the food he eats. “My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me, and to accomplish His work.” (John 4:34)

I was back to thinking that being a teacher was my work, but that is only how I got a check. That isn’t God’s will for me. I was looking at things all wrong. I need to be about the work the Almighty wills me to do. I am not exactly sure yet what that IS but I do know what it isn’t. There was a time, not so long ago, when I sat in my Garden, praising Abba, telling him that I loved the life he had given me (an urban homestead), in fact I loved it so much that if He wanted me to do anything else He would have to drop it into my lap. He did just that, one day later. Now he has lifted it from my lap. I’m picking up from where I was that day. My garden needs some attention, but if this is the Almighty’s will for me then I’ll get it back in order.

20170908_112625 It is September. I am very limited on planting options. Ray is in the midst of making a hoop house for some VERY late winter crops for our farm. (If you look carefully you can see the structure out my office window.) Today, just to start getting dirty, I bought a tiny little philodendron, a small pot and cord to make a hanger (for the plant hook Ray put above my office window.) Before I had children (was that really 40 years ago?) I discovered that this little plant was always forgiving. A good place to start. Even as a tiny baby plantlet it seems cheerful. The next job, straighten up the green house.


Me oh my! I had a jungle full of weeds growing in my beautiful green house. The outside walls and roof need a good cleaning, but while I build up my energy levels (there is a whole lot of sitting down when you are a teacher on a computer) I settled for cleaning  up the mess inside. I worked my way back, foot by foot. I knew the measurements because one square foot is the size of the bricks that make the path down the center of the green house. Bit by little bit I weeded and straightened my way down the aisle. There was color in the planter box to my right. Could it be? Tomatoes I had started from seed? When my hip hurt too much to get up and down to plant those little baby plants outside, I sat on my garden stool and planted my little tomato plants in the green house planter box. They had not been touched all season long, though Ray told me that he did water the box during the summer. I got the vines under control and harvested the pretty basket of tomatoes in the picture. Persimmons, Brandywine, Black Plum and Stripped Romas. We feasted on Pesto Pasta with some amazing tomatoes. All because the Almighty said, “Be fruitful and multiply” They live up to their calling. Ray was thinking Tomato Sandwiches sounded really good.

September 8, 2017 OAYSE - CAFeI even finished my next Ephesians study.

The will of the Father Ephesians 1:7-10

Debs… praying for Mexico (8.1 earthquake), Huston (still recovering), Everyone in Irma’s path, the firemen and citizens of the NorthWest while everything burns, and for the wisdom and wise counsel of those in DC who need to respond to N Korea. May God have mercy on America and Americans. ….Are you saved?

September 8, 2017

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Does God really love me?

It is the day of the great American eclipse. Serious fog is blocking my view in Everett, Wa. We cannot see across the valley, never mind seeing to the sky.

The dogs are acting a little weird, at least Rudy is. He is jumpy and acting like he either hurts or will be hurt. He doesn’t want to eat. It’s hard to watch. Coincidence? Of the many details I prayed for last night, one of them was that the Almighty would take care of my dogs if Scott Clark is correct and the rapture of the church takes place this year on the Feast of Trumpets. That is so exciting! Yet, while I write that thought my eyes turn to the warm body with the faithful eyes who is tightly cuddled next to me. What will become of my dog?

3March 26, 2017 (18)I know that there are animals in heaven. Y’shua returns from heaven on a white horse. Surly there is a place for Rudy and Bomber too. I will trust Him, whose eyes are on anonymous sparrows.

My title isn’t really my question. I KNOW the Almighty loves me. I’m actually a little overwhelmed by that fact after a very brief study of Ephesians 1:5-6.

In Love YHVH predestined us to adoption as sons through Y’shua haMashich to Himself according to the kind intention of His will to the praise of the glory of His grace which He freely bestowed on us in the Beloved.

My pre-study starts with 5w’s and an h. I’ve already looked at some word studies during my overview. (I was well trained by Kay Author’s Precept Ministries a long time ago) Looking at the question of when this this passage took place, the enormity of the little phrase, “before the foundation of the world” began to sink in.

Y’shua is famous  for telling us that He is going to prepare a place for us. John 14:3 But it occurs to me that I was “predestined to adoption… before the foundation of the world. My take on this is that, like we know Y’shua is doing, the Almighty prepared a place for us. To prepare a place for us agrees that he already chose us “before the foundation of the world.” Y’shua paid my price with his blood, YHVH accepted the payment and raised Him from death. Y’shua returned to the Heavenly realm to ‘prepare a place’. Now we are simply waiting for Him to come again and receive us to Himself.  I’m not sure which direction this study will go, but “In love” is how it is speaking to me today. Are you ready?

Aug 20 2017 Eph 1 3-4 Par ici et par la Speaking of the Ephesians study, the 2nd lesson has been posted. I loved what the Almighty was speaking to me. It was almost hard to keep up it came so fast. Pour a cuppa coffee, then click here “Who are you?” Ephesians 1:3-4 I promise it is not as long as the 1st lesson I did. It will give you something kewl to do while you wait for the eclipse to pass over.

Debs in Everett, WA 8/21/2017

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by the WILL of YHVH

A lot has happened in the last 48 hours. I looked inside of myself and got angry and depressed about being fired. Never mind that I supported the reason I was let go… but I pictured getting younger staff for our school by filling empty positions. Not by giving up my position. I felt so rejected and embarrassed.  I became so full of myself that I told Ray, I don’t want to ever have anything to do with any of them again. Surly they despise me and have only been tolerating me up till now or this would not have happened! Ray is a patient man. He looked right at me and said, “It is too early to make a decision like that.”  He was right.

Aug 13 2017 WILL PrestinCrosby This morning I re-opened the book of Ephesians. I meant this to be a study for my students. The Almighty had something else in mind.

There is a tiny, nearly insignificant word in the English text, the word is will. I’ve been doing my pre-study of this book since the middle of July yet somehow I did not pay attention to this common little word. But this morning it jumped out at me, like a gift in a pretty ribbon.

Will: thelma G2307 a determination about a subject or thing… the choice made about the subject. (Zoe) An expression or inclination of pleasure toward that which is liked. That which pleases and makes joy. When it is God’s will it signifies His gracious disposition towards something. Designates what God Himself does of His own good pleasure.

The very first use of thelma in the book of Ephesians is in verse 1.

1:1      Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, to the saints who are at Ephesus and who are faithful in Christ Jesus:

I become so used to Paul being an apostle and to the little word will that I nearly missed the significance of Paul’s opening word to the Ephesians. Who but the Almighty would choose a terrorist who murdered, jailed and went out of his way in hate to persecute believers in Y’shua (Jesus)? Paul was the result of the will of YHVH (God). It gave the Almighty pleasure to choose someone whose will was completely against the will of God and make him the missionary, the apostle, of the love of YHVH though Y’shua! Paul thought that his whole life was going one direction. His studies, his work, his associates… but in one unexpected moment, everything changed. My change was not nearly as dramatic as Paul’s, but like Paul, I can trust that what the Almighty wants for the last years of my life are brighter and better then where I thought I would go.

What else does Ephesians tell me about the Almighty’s will?

1:9     He made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His kind intention which He purposed in Him

1:11     also we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to His purpose who works all things after the counsel of His will,

From my perspective, YHVH’s will is a mystery–purposed in Y’shua. It is always a surprise, but only to me. Everything that happens in my life has a purpose in the will of the Almighty. He alone knows why I am faced with the circumstances of my life. The hardest things always work out to be good. For me, this is why it is important to thank God “in all things and through all things,” though I have known times when my thank-you’s were strictly obedience rather then heart felt.

2:3     Among them (the sons of disobedience 2:2) we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest.

The heart is where Y’shua rules our lives (a study for a different day). If he has not been invited into my heart, then my life is ruled by my mind and my flesh. Logic and desire. Every believer must choose to seek Y’shua with all their heart, the mind must be in submission to the heart where Y’shua sits as Lord, so must the strength of our flesh. If I simply go with what I think or what I feel, then I am no different then “children of wrath”, unbelievers. It is normal to make decisions with my intellect and experience (mind) and to react to what I feel (flesh). But we who are born again are not normal, we are supernatural and need to submit all our mind and all our strength to the heart, where Y’shua reigns.

5:17     So then do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is.

Ephesians 5:17 is still building on submitting our will to Y’shua rather then our feelings or logic. Y’shua is our light in this dark world (John 1:1-4, Eph 5:14) We are to be careful how we walk (from the Hebrew HALAK meaning how we live a righteous life, it has to do with the earlier word studies of saint and holy which both have to do with living inside the curtain of the temple, a consecrated life… where we live while free to come and go to minister and rest). The days are evil, there is no time to live by logic or feelings, but only by the direction of Y’shua from the heart.

6:6     not by way of eyeservice, as men-pleasers, but as slaves of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart.

Finally, no matter what our position is on this earth (this word is for slaves), we who believe in Y’shua are to do YHVH’s will from our heart!

What a life changing word study. I was feeling embarrassed, angry, sad and sick to my… head (those headaches were not from my heart). My mind came up with a plan based on the logic of what I experienced in the past, and what these people, whom I love, must really think of me (not how they are being obedient to the Almighty). I was acting as if I was a “son of disobedience”. But Jesus loves me, this I know! He will never throw me away (Deut 31:6, Matt 28:20, Heb 13:5-6) All he asks is that I look to him, to seek his kingdom, (Matt 6:33). I can always count on Him to direct my path in life (Prov 3:5-6)

I am thankful for the Almighty’s patience toward me. I am amazed that he can take one simple word and change my moment, to make beauty form what seemed like ashes. To anoint me with joy in the midst of my mourning and to cover me with praise (from the earlier word study blessed) instead of that spirit of heaviness. (Isa 61:3)

How do you “press on” when you feel crushed?

Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,  fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.    Heb 13:1-2

Debs, August 13, 2017

All Scripture references are from the New American Standard Update NASU

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