The Clarion, Mar. 2022
As March begins to let go of winter, and spring struggles to appear, let’s remember that life may be cold and harsh, but God’s love always is victorious over the struggles.
Spring is Here
Lord, as the earth renews itself in the spring, let me be renewed as I accept You in my life. As winter lets go to spring, let me shed my old ways and allow Your Spirit to live within me that I may have life again. Like the buds on the trees that burst so that leaves may grow, let Your love burst within me. Fill me with Your living water that I may grow. As the flowers give forth a beautiful fragrance, let my praises to You give out a beautiful fragrance that will rise to reach You. Cut out the evil in my life, Lord, just as the weeds are cut down that I may come to You with a pure heart. Let this spring in my life be the beginning of new life, that will one day lead me home to You. Amen
What Can Man Do to Me?
Psalm 118:5-7 tells us, “From my distress I called upon the Lord;
The Lord answered me and put me in an open space. The Lord is for me; I will not fear; What can man do to me? The Lord is for me among those who help me;
Therefore I will look with satisfaction on those who hate me.”
The Psalmist asked the question, “What can Man do to me?”
So often we live in fear and we worry about all sorts of situations. But God does not want us to fear. How can we serve God if we are going to live in fear? How can we be the light in the darkness if we are going to fear the darkness? We are to be strong and courageous, this is what God told Joshua when they entered the land as Joshua 1:5-7 tells us, “No one will be able to oppose you all the days of your life. Just as I have been with Moses, I will be with you; I will not desert you nor abandon you. Be strong and courageous, for you shall give this people possession of the land which I swore to their fathers to give them. Only be strong and very courageous; be careful to do according to all the Law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, so that you may achieve success wherever you go.”
The recipe for their success was not only to be strong and very courageous, but to live by God’s Word. We have been called to the harvest field, if that be our workplace, our community, or our relatives, or maybe even our own household, no matter where, we have been told that we need to be the light because it is the will of God. Yeshua even said that it was His food to do the will of God.
John 4:34-35 says, “ Yeshua said to them, “My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me, and to accomplish His work. Do you not say, ‘There are still four months, and then comes the harvest’? Behold, I tell you, raise your eyes and observe the fields, that they are white for harvest.”
Yeshua taught His disciple to pray, “Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” We must let go of our will and put on the yoke of the kingdom, and when we do, Yeshua tells us that the world will hate us.
John 15:18-21 says, “If the world hates you, you know that it has hated Me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, because of this the world hates you. Remember the word that I said to you, ‘A slave is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted Me, they will persecute you as well; if they followed My word, they will follow yours also. But all these things they will do to you on account of My name, because they do not know the One who sent Me.”
Yehsua tells us that when we are persecuted that we are blessed and we should rejoice.
Matthew 5:11-12 ‘Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you, and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of Me. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward in heaven is great; for in this same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.”
Now, not too many people rejoice when they suffer persecution. This is what Paul says in 2 Corinthians 4:7-11, “But we have this treasure in earthen containers, so that the extraordinary greatness of the power will be of God and not from ourselves; we are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying around in the body the dying of Yeshua, so that the life of Yeshua may also be revealed in our body. For we who live are constantly being handed over to death because of Yeshua, so that the life of Yeshua may also be revealed in our mortal flesh.”
“What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who is against us?” (Romans 8:31)
Yes, who can be against us? Well, many people today can and are against us. People all over the world are being persecuted and martyred for their faith in God. Believers all over the world are being strong and courageous. Peter did not understand what it meant to follow Yeshua as Matthew 16:21-24 tells us, “From that time Yeshua began to point out to His disciples that it was necessary for Him to go to Jerusalem and to suffer many things from the elders, chief priests, and scribes, and to be killed, and to be raised up on the third day. And yet Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him, saying, “God forbid it, Lord! This shall never happen to You!” But He turned and said to Peter, “Get behind Me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to Me; for you are not setting your mind on God’s purposes, but men’s. Then Yeshua said to His disciples, “If anyone wants to come after Me, he must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow Me.”
We seem to miss that last line that tells us that we must deny ourselves and take up our cross, which is the yoke of the kingdom and follow Him.
Galatians 5:24 also tells us, “Now those who belong to Messiah Yeshua crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.”
Believers today do not understand that we are to walk in Yeshua’s footsteps. That is what it means to follow Him. That is what it means to be a Christian.
Philippians 3:7-11 tells us this, “ But whatever things were gain to me, these things I have counted as loss because of Messiah. More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Messiah Yeshua my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them mere rubbish, so that I may gain Messiah, and may be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, but that which is through faith in Messiah, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith, that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death; if somehow I may attain to the resurrection from the dead.”
After we have denied ourselves and crucified our flesh and suffered all things loss, picking up our cross and sharing in the sufferings of Messiah…What can man do to us? We have already died to ourselves, we have already given up our lives, and all things now belong to Messiah, so there is nothing man can do to us. If man takes our life, and we have suffered for the kingdom, Yeshua tells us that we should rejoice for great is our reward. When we accepted Messiah as Lord and Savior, this is what we were accepting, the yoke of the kingdom. If you love the Savior, then giving your life to Him is not a hardship, but an act of love.
Philippians 3: 17-21 tells us about those who do not accept the yoke of the kingdom. “Brothers and sisters, join in following my example, and observe those who walk according to the pattern you have in us. For many walk, of whom I often told you, and now tell you even as I weep, that they are the enemies of the cross of Messiah, whose end is destruction, whose god is their appetite, and whose glory is in their shame, who have their minds on earthly things. For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Messiah Yeshua; who will transform the body of our lowly condition into conformity with His glorious body, by the exertion of the power that He has even to subject all things to Himself.”
Mathew 10 sums it up perfectly. Matthew 10:27-28 says this, “What I tell you in the darkness, tell in the light; and what you hear whispered in your ear, proclaim on the housetops. And do not be afraid of those who kill the body but are unable to kill the soul; but rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”
Honey Pecan Crusted Chicken
8 Pieces of skinless chicken breast halves
1/4 cup of honey…salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons of dijon mustard…1/4 teaspoon paprika or seasoned salt
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder..1 1/2cups corn flakes, crushed or Matzah Meal
¾ cups chopped pecans
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F
Combine honey, dash of salt, pepper, paprika and garlic powder in a bowl.
Combine flakes and pecans in a shallow dish.
Brush chicken pieces with honey mustard and then dredge in the cornflake mixture. Lightly spray chicken with vegetable spray and place on a baking pan.
Bake at 400 degrees F for about 40 minutes or until done. Enjoy!
Kids Corner: Purim, The Story of Esther
Today we are going to learn about a young girl named Esther. Esther was Jewish, just like Jesus. Esther had an uncle named Mordecai and he worked in the palace of King Xerxes. King Xerxes met Esther and he wanted to marry her and make her queen. Esther agreed to marry him, but her Uncle Mordecai told her not to tell him that she was Jewish because many people did not like the Jewish people back then. Now the king had a friend named Haman, who was not a very good friend, in fact he wasn’t even a very good man. He would go throughout the palace and he would want people to bow down before him, because he thought that he was so important. But Mordecai would not bow down to him because he only bowed before God in prayer. This made Haman very angry and he thought of a plan to get rid of Mordecai and his people. One day while Mordecai was in the palace he heard two men planning on killing the king and Mordecai quickly went to Queen Esther, and told her about the plan these two men had. Esther said , “I must go and tell the king”, and she did. The king was so happy that Mordecai cared enough to save his life, that he had Mordecai sit on his horse and was led throughout the town by one of the king’s men, while saying, “This is Mordecai the king’s friend.” Meanwhile, Haman had his own plot to kill Mordecai and his people. God is so faithful that he let Mordecai discover Haman’s plan. Once again Mordecai went to Queen Esther and told her about it. She said, “Tell the people to fast and pray and I will too”. So they fasted and prayed. Esther knew that it was not proper to go where the king gathered with all of his important men who gave him advice, but she did anyway, not knowing if he would be mad at her. When the king saw her, he said, “ Esther, why are you here? Come and sit by me.” He said, “What can I do for you?” She replied, “ I am having a party and I want you and your friend Haman to come and have supper with me.” The King said to her, “What a great idea.” So after they had supper, the king said to Esther, “Esther, what can I do for you?” And she said, “I want you to know that your friend, as she points to Haman, wants to kill me and my people.” The king said, “What? No one is going to kill my queen”, and he had Haman taken away and he never again saw the king. All of Esther’s people celebrated and even to this day, people celebrate, with noise makers and food and they even dress up like Esther and the King. Why? Because God was faithful in protecting His people.
And to this day it is said, “Esther was born for such a time as this.”
Tav is the 22nd letter in the Hebrew alphabet, which means it is the last letter. Tav has the sound of a T and a numerical value of 400.
Tav is the last letter of the Hebrew word emet, which means ‘truth’. The midrash explains that emet is made up of the first, middle, and last letters of the Hebrew alphabet (aleph, mem, and tav: אמת). … Thus, truth is all-encompassing, while falsehood is narrow and deceiving. A person who acts in emet is one who can be trusted.They are reliable and trustworthy.
Yeshua said in John 14:6, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”
Pilate asked the question, “What is truth?” Truth is not a what but a who. It describes a person’s character. Referring to Yeshua, John said this in John 1:9, “This was the true Light that, coming into the world, enlightens every person.”
Rev 22:13 says this about Yeshua, “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.” Yeshua is the Aleph and the Tav of the Hebrew alphabet. The Aleph and the Tav were at the beginning of the Creation.
Yeshua, the Word of God, who is the Truth, and True Light, the beginning of all things, and the end of all things, is the way to eternal life.
We hope that you have enjoyed learning about the Hebrew Alphabet, and the meaning behind every letter. It truly shows that God’s Word is more than just letters. One day Yeshua Himself will teach us the Torah as Isaiah 2:3 tells us, “And many peoples will come and say, “Come, let’s go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; so that He may teach us about His ways, and that we may walk in His paths.” For the law will go out from Zion and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.”