Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Olive Tapenade recipe

 3/4 cup Ni├žoise olives, pitted

3/4 cup stuffed Spanish green olives, pitted1/2 cup sliced black olives, drained

1/4 cup Sun-Dried Tomatoes , drained

2 TBS capers, drained

2 garlic clove

2 anchovy fillet

1/2 TBS chopped fresh basil leaves

1/2 TBS chopped fresh thyme leaves

1/2 TBS chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves

1 tsp chopped fresh oregano leaves

1 TBS lemon juice

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

In a food processor, combine all the ingredients except the olive oil. Use the pulse button until coarsely chopped. Continue to pulse, slowly adding the olive oil. Refrigerate in a covered container. Use as needed.

Tapenade will keep up to 1 week, refrigerated, in a covered container.

Enjoy with pita chips, crackers, or a veggie tray.

Monday, May 3, 2021

Out Of The Depths (poem)

 It makes the wounded spirit whole,

And calms the troubled breast;

'Tis manna to the hungry soul,

And to the weary rest.

Dear Name! the Rock on which I build

My Shield and Hiding-place;

My never-failing Treasury fill'd

With boundless stores of grace.

By Thee my prayers acceptance gain,

Although with sin defiled;

Satan accuses me in vain,

And I am own'd a child.

Jesus! my Shepherd, Husband, Friend,

My Prophet, Priest, and King;

My Lord, my Life, my Way, my End,

Accept the praise I bring.

Weak is the effort of my heart,

And cold my warmest thought;

But when I see Thee as Thou art,

I'll praise Thee as I ought.

Till then I would Thy love proclaim

With every fleeting breath;

And may the music of Thy Name

Refresh my soul in death!

—John Newton

Saturday, May 1, 2021

Moses Wrote Of Me

 One time when Christ was dealing with the religious leaders of his day He says something that makes a person wonder.

John 5:46- For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me: for he wrote of me.

You can search all through the Old Testament and never find the name "Jesus" in there. So, how did Moses write of Christ? Through prophecy and typology.

Luke 24:44- And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me.

There are references to Christ's birth and death all through the Old Testament, which is what Christ pointed out to the men on the road to Emmaus.

Luke 24:27- And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself.

The most amazing typology that I've seen is the one about leprosy in the book of Leviticus.

Leprosy is a disease that would slowly kill off your body. It ate away at the flesh, going down through the nerves and even muscles and bones, until parts literally fell off. This disease was greatly feared because there was no cure for it. Anyone who had this diagnosis was cut off from the rest of his people. It was a living death sentence.

Leprosy is like sin. It cuts us off from God and slowly destroys our bodies. We are a walking, living, breathing death with each step we take through life we are one step closer to the end. If we die in our sin, then our souls also get destroyed and sent to hell first, and after the judgment, they are sent for eternity to the Lake of Fire.

If a person in the Old Testament had leprosy and they recovered, which is rare, there was a special ceremony that had to be completed before they could be introduced back into normal society. This is detailed in Leviticus 14.

Leviticus 14:1-7-  And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, This shall be the law of the leper in the day of his cleansing: He shall be brought unto the priest: And the priest shall go forth out of the camp; and the priest shall look, and, behold, if the plague of leprosy be healed in the leper; Then shall the priest command to take for him that is to be cleansed two birds alive and clean, and cedar wood, and scarlet, and hyssop: And the priest shall command that one of the birds be killed in an earthen vessel over running water: As for the living bird, he shall take it, and the cedar wood, and the scarlet, and the hyssop, and shall dip them and the living bird in the blood of the bird that was killed over the running water: And he shall sprinkle upon him that is to be cleansed from the leprosy seven times, and shall pronounce him clean, and shall let the living bird loose into the open field.

Why all the pomp and circumstance? Because it's a type of something that they didn't even realize!

The Old Testament Jew wasn't looking forward to the cross. They had no idea that their Messiah was going to be crucified. They thought He would come and destroy the Romans and reign. That's why they didn't want to accept Jesus! He wasn't going about to conquer, he was a lamb led to the slaughter as described in Isaiah 53.

Jesus' first coming was for the purpose of defeating the curse of sin. He had to present the payment for sinful humanity before He could address the rest of the problem! He was wounded for our transgressions on Calvary. We are healed by His Stripes that the Roman soldiers put on Him. It's His Blood that can cleanse the sin debt of mankind!

Where do we see this? In Leviticus 14.

First, the recovered leper must acknowledge his condition and a change in his condition. He needs to admit that he was a leper and that the leprosy is gone.

A sinner must first acknowledge their sin condition and then accept the Lord's completed payment for this on Calvary as the only acceptable payment for sin in the sight of God.

How does He do this? He goes to the priest.

Hebrews 9:11-12- But Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building; Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.

The priest goes without the camp (Calvary/ Golgotha) to the leper. Remember the leper cannot enter into the city. He can't be around normal people because of his disease. So, Christ came down to earth where sinful people lived so that He could live the sinless life they could never fully live (fulfilling the requirements of the law). And then, so that He could offer Himself (a perfect priest offering a perfect sacrifice) for our sins.

Hebrews 9:14- How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?

The priest takes two birds and a few other items- cedar wood, scarlet, hyssop and an earthen vessel.

The Bible doesn't tell us what type of wood the cross was made of, but my guess would be that it was cedar.

The soldiers put a scarlet and purple robe on Christ along with a crown of thorns. Why would they do that? They were mocking Him, but the type is there. It was a sign of His divinity. It was to show His royalty. He was both God and man standing before them. He was the earthen vessel. 

As He hung upon the cross, soldiers tried to give him vinegar to drink. They used hyssop to get it up to Him. 

John 19:29- Now there was set a vessel full of vinegar: and they filled a spunge with vinegar, and put it upon hyssop, and put it to his mouth.

It was all there at Calvary. Every item needed for the cleansing of leprosy. Every thing that was required by the Law of Moses for the cleansing of sin.

Hebrews 9:19-22-  For when Moses had spoken every precept to all the people according to the law, he took the blood of calves and of goats, with water, and scarlet wool, and hyssop, and sprinkled both the book, and all the people, Saying, This is the blood of the testament which God hath enjoined unto you. Moreover he sprinkled with blood both the tabernacle, and all the vessels of the ministry. And almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission.

Jesus Christ was the Messiah that they were waiting for, but He wasn't the Messiah that they were looking for. They had created an image in their minds of who the Messiah would be and what He would do when He appeared, and they never checked the Scripture to see if they were correct in their assumption.

Leviticus 17:11-  For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul.

Blood had to be shed. 

Hebrews 9:24-28-  For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us: Nor yet that he should offer himself often, as the high priest entereth into the holy place every year with blood of others; For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world hath he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself. And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment: So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.

The Sacrifice had to be offered before God in Heaven according to specific protocols by a priest. 

Hebrews 5:6- As he saith also in another place, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.

Hebrews7:11, 19, 22-25- If therefore perfection were by the Levitical priesthood, (for under it the people received the law,) what further need was there that another priest should rise after the order of Melchisedec, and not be called after the order of Aaron? For the law made nothing perfect, but the bringing in of a better hope did; by the which we draw nigh unto God. By so much was Jesus made a surety of a better testament. And they truly were many priests, because they were not suffered to continue by reason of death: But this man, because he continueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood. Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them.

The last step is the only one left for a person to take. All the other work is done. You just need to acknowledge your condition and go to the priest.

Romans 4:13- For the promise, that he should be the heir of the world, was not to Abraham, or to his seed, through the law, but through the righteousness of faith.

Romans 7:7,12- What shall we say then? Is the law sin? God forbid. Nay, I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet. Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good.

Romans 8:3-4- For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.

Hebrews 10:1,11-14- For the law having a shadow of good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with those sacrifices which they offered year by year continually make the comers thereunto perfect. And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins: But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God; From henceforth expecting till his enemies be made his footstool. For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified.

Galatians 3:21,24- Is the law then against the promises of God? God forbid: for if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law. Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.

Galatians 2:16- Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.

Galatians 3:13- Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:

Romans 10:5,8-9- For Moses describeth the righteousness which is of the law, That the man which doeth those things shall live by them. But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach; That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

What has been happening for over a thousand years was prophesied by Moses.

Romans 10:19- But I say, Did not Israel know? First Moses saith, I will provoke you to jealousy by them that are no people, and by a foolish nation I will anger you.

One day, the Lord will allow a false Messiah to arise. The Jewish people will whole heartedly accept him because he is who they are looking for. He is spoken of by Daniel as one who comes in peacefully and makes a covenant with Israel, but he will break that covenant and speak against the Lord God Almighty.

Then Israel will have to chose between the Messiah that died for them willingly or the AntiChrist that they accepted in ignorance.

Hebrews 10:28-29- He that despised Moses' law died without mercy under two or three witnesses: Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace?

You will have to chose. 

Hebrews 3:15- While it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts, as in the provocation.

Sunday, April 4, 2021

Alone In The Dark (poem)

 A Christian told me about Christ's gift
And of his imminent return.
How I had a choice to make-
Repent and turn or burn.

I laughed at him and walked away,
The story couldn't possibly be real!
Then all the Christians disappeared,
And I learned I'd missed the deal.

I grabbed a Bible and read the last book;
The horrors that would unfold.
God's wrath would fall and destroy the earth.
I wish I'd listened when I was told!

The plants and trees will become scarce.
The animals and fish will die.
I'll struggle to find food to eat,
Why did I believe the lie?

Natural disasters will grow much worse.
The sun will refuse to shine.
Plagues will rampage across the land.
Alone, I was left behind.

A united world will emerge;
It will seem like a dream come true.
One establishment for all mankind,
World peace would then ensue.

A pact would begin with good intent,
But be broken before it's time.
Bloodshed, famine, war, and death,
Darkness of heart and mind.

I cried aloud, "Please, one more chance!
Don't leave me alone to this fate!"
The silence I hear fills me with fear,
I didn't listen- It's far too late.

I'm alone in the darkness,
Who can lead me in the way?
How can I survive this hell?
I'll read the Bible and pray.

Obey the commandments that Moses gave,
Believe on Jesus whom God did send.
Be willing to die for the truth I ignored,
I'll try to endure to the end.