Do you understand  what you are reading? Philip (Acts 8:30-31)


“How can I? Unless someone explains it to me?" The Eunuch   


      When we get passionate about Jesus the Messiah's "parousia" it will become apparent by the way we live. Why should we get so excited about an event yet to be realized in the future?

     I have offered some of the reasons why I am so excited for the opportunity to see him. The promises revealed in the Bible for my future (and yours) hinge on the "parousia".

    This video attempts to offer a vivid picture from the Bible of Jesus' parousia. It's vital that we be ready for his parousia. To fail to do so will be catastrophic.

Special Features!

Tracy Z at goes to the chalk board to bring the message of truth to you. What does the Bible really say about many subjects about which so many are confused? Short messages with a mighty punch. Thanks so much Tracy! Look on this site for a list of some of the "Bible Chalk Board" messages. You will be blessed as well as informed by these messages. 

 Tikkun Olam” (Hebrew for “world repair”) has come to connote social action and the pursuit of social justice. It is a Jewish concept defined by acts of kindness performed to perfect or repair the world. [Please allow me to expand this usage to its greater meaning, i.e., this world is in dire need of repairs and God has a plan for making those repairs for making them permanent.]

If A Man Die Will He live Again?

Job asked a question which we all are interested in. Is there an "after death"? Hebrews 9:27 speaks of an appointment we all have to die, but says there is an "after this". How can I better understand that "after this"?
 Read More

Two Words of Hope: Resurrection Hope

Our faith is real because we have heard God's Word, accepted it as truth, and responded to what it says. We, as the Bereans in Acts , have searched the Bible and found certain things to be so. Acts 17:10-11 What is there about Resurrection Hope that gives us real hope?
 Read More

Does the Bible Teach TWO Resurrections?

Yes, it is true that the Bible teaches two resurrections. Is that important? Jesus assured us that all who are in their graves shall hear his voice and come forth. Jesus is coming; will all be over in the blink of your eye? Or could it take some time to wrap it all up? 

Read More



We often think of God as being compassionate:
  • For the Lord your God is a compassionate God; Deut 4:31 (NASB)

We often think of God as caring:
  • Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time,7 casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you. 1 Peter 5:6-7 (NASB)

We often think of God as loving:
  • "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. John 3:16 (NASB)

We often think of God as generous:
  • But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him James 1:5 (NASB)

We even sometimes think of God as angry:

But do you ever think of God as jealous?
  • Ye shall not go after other gods, of the gods of the people which are round about you; 15 (For the LORD thy God is a jealous God among you) lest the anger of the LORD thy God be kindled against thee, and destroy thee from off the face of the earth. Deut 6:14-15 (KJV)

Has God changed? Is he still a jealous God? In what way is God jealous? Has he become more pluralistic in these days of divergent concepts of who God is? Mankind has had different ideas about the identity of God from the beginning. In his wisdom mankind has sought God in the stars, in nature and within himself.
  • Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and of birds and four-footed animals and crawling creatures. Romans 1:22-23 (NASB)

I think it important for us to understand the God which we serve. In order for us to understand him it is important to know what is important to him. We get to know and understand our spouse by learning what is important to them. Three things I have learned about my spouse: she doesn’t like to be tickled; she doesn’t like to be frightened; and she like cards: Birthday, Anniversary and Valentines. I have known from the beginning of our relationship about these and other things which are important to her.

We need to know that God is a jealous God. He doesn’t like us being involved with other gods: the gods of the people around us. He has made this plain from the beginning. For some reason or perhaps a variety of reason, God’s creation has chosen to worship the creation rather than the Creator.
  • For they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen. Romans 1:25 (NASB)

God has observed this human trait and the best word for his response is jealousy. God created us and gave us life. He loved us and gave his son. He cares. He is gracious. He is generous and compassionate. But he also gets angry. When his creation chooses to bow down to an idol made of wood, stone or metal; he gets very jealous and as a result gets very angry. “The Lord your God is a consuming fire, a jealous God.
  • "So watch yourselves, that you do not forget the covenant of the Lord your God which He made with you, and make for yourselves a graven image in the form of anything against which the Lord your God has commanded you.24 "For the Lord your God is a consuming fire, a jealous God.25 "When you become the father of children and children's children and have remained long in the land, and act corruptly, and make an idol in the form of anything, and do that which is evil in the sight of the Lord your God so as to provoke Him to anger,26 I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that you will surely perish quickly from the land where you are going over the Jordan to possess it. You shall not live long on it, but will be utterly destroyed.27 "The Lord will scatter you among the peoples, and you will be left few in number among the nations where the Lord drives you.28 "There you will serve gods, the work of man's hands, wood and stone, which neither see nor hear nor eat nor smell. Deut 4:23-28 (NASB)

Why did God instruct the nation of Israel to drive out from the land they were about to posses the Amorite, the Canaanite, the Hittite, the Perizzite, the Hivite and the Jebusite? He knew that the idol worship of these people would rub off on the Israelites. He knew they would inter-marry and that eventually you wouldn’t be able to tell one from the other. That may seem hard to those of us who are here in this great land, because our fore-parents made their way to this melting pot many years ago, to become a part of the freedom to choose our religion as we see fit. But God wanted a people that would be loyal to him. “Watch yourself” was his warning. “For you shall not worship any other god, for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God.” God was telling his people, “Now this is important to me.” Perhaps that might be difficult for us to wrap our minds around but if we are to fathom what is important to God, this is something we need to know.
  • Be sure to observe what I am commanding you this day: behold, I am going to drive out the Amorite before you, and the Canaanite, the Hittite, the Perizzite, the Hivite and the Jebusite.12 "Watch yourself that you make no covenant with the inhabitants of the land into which you are going, or it will become a snare in your midst.13 "But rather, you are to tear down their altars and smash their sacred pillars and cut down their Asherim 14 —for you shall not worship any other god, for the Lord, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God—15 otherwise you might make a covenant with the inhabitants of the land and they would play the harlot with their gods and sacrifice to their gods, and someone might invite you to eat of his sacrifice,16 and you might take some of his daughters for your sons, and his daughters might play the harlot with their gods and cause your sons also to play the harlot with their gods.17 "You shall make for yourself no molten gods. Exodus 34:11-17 (NASB)

Jesus knew that this commandment was important, yea even necessary to his heavenly father. He knew this was a line not to cross.
    • Again, the devil took Him to a very high mountain and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory;9 and he said to Him, "All these things I will give You, if You fall down and worship me."10 Then Jesus said to him, "Go, Satan! For it is written, 'You shall worship the Lord your God, and serve Him only.' " Matt 4:8-10 (NASB)
He knew that worship was important to his father in heaven. His father welcomes our worship, seeks it and expects it. But he also knew something else about worship. “You shall worship God and serve him only.” The commandments said explicitly:
  • "You shall have no other gods before Me.4 "You shall not make for yourself an idol, or any likeness of what is in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the water under the earth.5 "You shall not worship them or serve them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God.” Ex 20:3-5 (NASB)

Jesus made that even more well-defined when he said:
    • "But an hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for such people the Father seeks to be His worshipers. John 4:23 (NASB)


Does this continue to be an important issue today? Shouldn’t we be more pluralistic and ecumenical in our approach to religion? In view of the scriptures we have already examined, if you had to make an assessment in light of their teachings, what might that be? Notice particularly verse one of chapter 20 of Exodus:
  • Then God spoke all these words. Exodus 20:1

Remember the two tables of stone which Moses brought down the mountain with him? Remember what is said about those stone tablets? This doctrine relating to worship was important to God. “Whom shall he make to understand doctrine?” Isaiah 28:9 (KJV) Who then will understand this doctrine?
    • When He had finished speaking with him upon Mount Sinai, He gave Moses the two tablets of the testimony, tablets of stone, written by the finger of God. Ex 31:18 (NASB)

Sh'ma Yisrael

Moses knew this concept was very important to God so he made it very plain to the Israelites in the shema. Shema Yisrael (or Sh'ma Yisrael or just Shema) "Hear, [O] Israel") are the first two words of a section of the Torah (Hebrew Bible) that is a centerpiece of the morning and evening Jewish prayer services. The first verse encapsulates the monotheistic essence of Judaism: "Hear, O Israel: the Lord is our God, the Lord is one," found in Deuteronomy 6:4 . Observant Jews consider the Shema to be the most important part of the prayer service in Judaism, and its twice-daily recitation as a mitzvah (religious commandment). It is traditional for Jews to say the Shema as their last words, and for parents to teach their children to say it before they go to sleep at night. Wikipedia.

Jesus made it equally plain in his ministry. This was important to Jesus. It was important to Moses. It is important to God. God is a jealous God. Shema has not lost its importance to God, even though it might loose its importance to this generation or even to us.
  • "What commandment is the foremost of all?"29 Jesus answered, "The foremost is, 'Hear, O Israel! the Lord our God is one Lord ;30 and you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart , and with all your soul , and with all your mind, and with all your strength .' Mark 12:28-30 (NASB)

This issue was of such great importance to Jesus that he made it a matter of life and death: eternal life. Is that term that Jesus used registering with you? “You, the only true God”. It would be going too far to declare Jesus to be very God when he called someone other than himself “the only true God.” Let’s get in step with Jesus and his teaching.
  • "This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent. John 17:3 (NASB)

Paul, the Apostle to the Gentiles concurred with the Shema:
  • We know that there is no such thing as an idol in the world, and that there is no God but one.5 For even if there are so-called gods whether in heaven or on earth, as indeed there are many gods and many lords,6 yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom are all things and we exist for Him; 1 Corinthians 8:4-6 (NASB)

Paul made it plain in his first letter to Timothy:
  • This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior,4 who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.5 For there is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, 1 Tim 2:3-5 (NASB)
Sh'ma Yis'ra'eil
Judaism 101
    • Deuteronomy 6:4-9 Sh'ma Yis'ra'eil Adonai Eloheinu Adonai echad.
      Hear, Israel, the Lord is our God, the Lord is One. In an undertone:
    • Barukh sheim k'vod malkhuto l'olam va'ed.
      Blessed be the Name of His glorious kingdom for ever and ever.
  • V'ahav'ta eit Adonai Elohekha b'khol l'vav'kha uv'khol naf'sh'kha uv'khol m'odekha.
    • And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.
  • V'hayu had'varim ha'eileh asher anokhi m'tzav'kha hayom al l'vavekha.
    • And these words that I command you today shall be in your heart.
  • V'shinan'tam l'vanekha v'dibar'ta bam
    • And you shall teach them diligently to your children, and you shall speak of them
  • b'shiv't'kha b'veitekha uv'lekh't'kha vaderekh uv'shakh'b'kha uv'kumekha
    • when you sit at home, and when you walk along the way, and when you lie down and when you rise up.
  • Uk'shar'tam l'ot al yadekha v'hayu l'totafot bein einekha.
    • And you shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be for frontlets between your eyes.
  • Ukh'tav'tam al m'zuzot beitekha uvish'arekha.
  • And you shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.

This also was very important to Isaiah in his OT gospel. Particularly notice the importance God placed on this issue so far as the world is concerned:
  • "I am the Lord, and there is no other; Besides Me there is no God. I will gird you, though you have not known Me; 6 That men may know from the rising to the setting of the sun That there is no one besides Me. I am the Lord, and there is no other, 7 The One forming light and creating darkness, Causing well -being and creating calamity; I am the Lord who does all these. Isaiah 45:5-7 (NASB)

That men may know from the rising to the setting of the sun That there is no one besides Me. I am the Lord, and there is no other. Should this be important to you and me? As Israel is so are we his witnesses. God knows of no God other than himself. We truly go too far if we claim to know another God other than the one God does. This is important to God. It should be important to us as well.
  • 'Do not tremble and do not be afraid; Have I not long since announced it to you and declared it? And you are My witnesses. Is there any God besides Me, Or is there any other Rock? I know of none.' " Isaiah 44:8 (NASB)
  • Yet for us there is but one God. I Corinthians 8:6

What then should be our response?
  • "Hear, O Israel! The Lord is our God, the Lord is one!5 "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.6 "These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. Deut 6:4-6 (NASB)
  • Jesus answered, "The foremost is, 'Hear, O Israel! the Lord our God is one Lord; 30 and you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart , and with all your soul , and with all your mind, and with all your strength .' Mark 12:29-30 (NASB)
Listen Church
“The LORD our God is One LORD”


I know enough about eternal life to know it is something I desire. I know enough about the Kingdom of God to know that is somewhere I want to live forever. I know that eternal life means no more death or sickness and I know that the Kingdom of God will be a place of unequaled peace and beauty on the earth. Naturally I want to know more than I know now about eternal life and the kingdom of God. If it is anything like what I imagine it to be, I am thrilled at the prospect.

God and his Son are portrayed in the Bible as being two separate individuals, persons, as I see it; who I am looking forward to see. A lot of people have; but we have not seen Jesus. We anticipate his return to the earth so we might see him in all his glory. (I Peter 1:8) No one has seen God; (I John 4:12) but we know the pure in heart will see him. (Matthew 5:8) With these points in the back of our minds, let me point you to this saying of Jesus:
  • John 17:3 And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.
The first thing I notice about this saying is how it is framed in importance: “This is life eternal.” Now; let me ask, if I may, how important do you think it is to know God and his Son Jesus? According to Jesus, this knowledge is closely related to eternal life. Eternal life is dependent on knowing God and his Son Jesus. I would think that ranks it at the top of things I need to know.


Inasmuch and I have not seen Jesus and cannot see God at this time; how then can I know or get to know them? Naturally, prayer is a very personal way to get acquainted with God and that is in perfect order, wouldn’t you say? Paul wrote about “having the mind of Christ”. Just what would you suppose that to mean?
  • For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ. 1 Corinthians 2:16 (KJV)

The simplest way for me to have “the mind of Christ” is to “think like Christ”. How might one get the mind of Christ? It seems to me that one would need to immerse himself/herself in the writings about and words of Jesus. Matthew, Mark, Luke, John and Revelation would be a good start. Would you expect Jesus to add to those words for you if you never spend time immersed in those clear words?
  • My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: John 10:27 (KJV)
  • The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life. John 6:63 (NASB)
  • We know, from the Word, that Jesus was born through a miraculous conception. Luke 1:35
  • We know that his name was to be, Jesus. Matthew 1:21
  • We know that he is the exact imprint of God's very being. (express image of his person..KJV) Hebrews 1:3
  • We have a record of his powerful ministry: where he healed the sick; raised the dead; and preached the gospel of the kingdom everywhere he went.
  • We know that he was able to do these things because “God was with him”. Acts 10:38
  • We know that he was determined to do his Father’s will. John 4:34
  • We know that he ministered to the multitudes and had compassion on them. Matthew 9:36
  • We know that he learned obedience. Hebrews 5:8
  • We know that he was just like his Father. John 14:9
  • We know from the records, that he was crucified on a cross; laid in a tomb; was resurrected on the third day from the dead and ascended into heaven where took his seat at his Father’s right hand. I Corinthians 15:3-4.
  • We know that, as our high priest, he has compassion on us. Hebrews 5:2
  • We know from the witness of two men, who were apparently angels, that he will return to the earth in the clouds of heaven as he was taken away. Acts 1:11

These are only a few of the many things we have learned about him because we are students of the Word. If all the books had been written about him that should be written, all the things that he did; (John 21:25) wouldn’t it have been great to sit at the feet of Jesus and hear him talk; to listen to his teaching? Peter, recognizing the tremendous privilege he had in seeing and having spent time with Jesus, said:
  • Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory: 1 Peter 1:8 (KJV)


The first part of the equation which our eternal life rests on is to know God.
  • John 17:3 And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.
The first thing that should be noted in this verse is that it is a prayer made to God by Jesus his Son. He did this often.
  • But Jesus Himself would often slip away to the wilderness and pray. Luke 5:16 (NASB)

The person/being to whom he prayed, he called God. In other places he called him “my God”.
  • John 20:17 Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.

Who is God? Has anyone ever seen him? What is he like? Will we ever get to see his face? Does he have a name? Is He real? Do you know him? Is He a part of your life? Are you a part of His? Can you picture God at all? Is he your God? Do you feel like He is your Father? Do you feel like He is your creator?

God created us in his image, so we must look something like God. Genesis 1:27 Notice how this is brought out in the creation narrative, so we can get the sense of what that means. [Adam begat a son, Seth, in his own image according to his likeness]; similarly, God created man in his image according to his likeness.
  • This is the book of the generations of Adam. In the day when God created man, He made him in the likeness of God.2 He created them male and female, and He blessed them and named them Man in the day when they were created.3 When Adam had lived one hundred and thirty years, he became the father of a son in his own likeness, according to his image, and named him Seth. Gen 5:1-3 (NASB)

Again, it is imperative, if we want to know God, to pray and to seek His face. I Chronicles 16:11 We cannot live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God; Matthew 4:4 so we must become familiar with what He has already said. According to that Word, what do we know about him?
  • You might be surprised to know that God has a mouth. Matthew 4:4
  • God is referred to in a very personal way when Isaiah referred to “God himself”. Isaiah 45:18
  • At the proper time God himself will dwell with men. Revelation 21:3
  • The angel Gabriel could actually stand in God’s presence. Luke 1:18
  • Jesus is currently in the presence of God.God has a presence. Heb. 9:24
  • Jesus can stand at the right hand of God, Acts 7:54
  • Jesus can sit at God’s right hand. Romans 8:34
  • God even has fingers. Exodus 31:18
  • The eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, his ears are open unto their prayers: the face of the Lord is against them that do evil. I Peter 3:12
  • God even has eyelids. Psalms 11:4
  • God’s servants will one day see his face. Revelation 21:4
  • God has a name.
  • The LORD God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, hath sent me unto you: (this is my name for ever), and this is my memorial unto all generations. Exodus 3:15 (KJV)

Who is God to you? Is He real? Do you know Him? We need to see God as God and to revere and to worship Him in a very real way. God needs to be real to us. We can see Him today; but only by faith and faith comes by hearing which comes from the word of the Lord. Romans 10:17 We need to see him today as Moses did when he forsook Egypt, by faith.
  • Heb. 11:27 By faith he forsook Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king: for he endured, as seeing him who is invisible.

Getting to know God has been and continues to be a very important issue with God and with His Son. God gets excited when his creation gives a high priority to understanding and knowing him. Then they can become aware that he exercises lovingkindness, justice and righteousness on earth.
  • Thus says the Lord, "Let not a wise man boast of his wisdom, and let not the mighty man boast of his might, let not a rich man boast of his riches; 24 but let him who boasts boast of this, that he understands and knows Me, that I am the Lord who exercises lovingkindness, justice and righteousness on earth; for I delight in these things," declares the Lord. Jer 9:23-24 (NASB)

It should be noted that even though we should and can know God today, it is only in part. It is not yet complete.
  • For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known. 1 Cor 13:12 (KJV)

God made it very plain that no man could see his face in live. Exodus 33:20 Jesus made it very plain that the pure in heart would see God. Matthew 5:8 Some things can be understood about God by observing his creation. Much can be learned by observing his orderliness and being mindful of his great power. Much can be gained by “considering the heavens, the work of God’s fingers, The moon and the stars, which he ordained”; Psalms 8:3 To deny God’ existence is the plague of modern man as was his proclivity from the very beginning. “And just as they did not see fit to acknowledge God any longer,” Romans 1:28 (NASB)
  • That which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them.20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse.21 For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Romans 1:19-21 (NASB)


God called Moses in a miraculous way. He also called Aaron to meet with Moses in the wilderness. Under the LORD God’s instructions; Moses and Aaron went into Egypt and demanded that Pharaoh “let my people go.” Exodus 4:27, 5:1 His response seems to be a logical response:
  • "Who is the Lord that I should obey His voice to let Israel go? I do not know the Lord. Ex 5:2 (NASB)

Pharaoh’s problem was twofold. This twofold problem has plagued humanity from the beginning. “Who is the Lord?” and “I do not know the Lord.” That is a sure fire path to destruction. If you were to follow the future events in the life of Pharaoh, you will understand what I mean. Exodus 14:28 If there is someone we ought to know, it would be our creator.

You know the story. The Israelites by the power of the LORD GOD found their way into the land of promise. After the deaths of Moses and Joshua, the next generation, “did not know the Lord, nor yet the work which He had done for Israel.” Judges 2:10 (NASB) As a result, the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the Lord and forsook the LORD God of their fathers. The anger of the LORD was hot against Israel and consequences were severe. This was a result of “not knowing the LORD”.

Eli was a great prophet of God. He must have known God. However, for some reason his sons did not carry on the tradition. “The sons of Eli were sons of Belial; they knew not the Lord.” I Samuel 2:12 As a result, Eli charged them with “Making the LORD’S people to transgress." You know how it works; “If the prophet’s sons can get by with sin, why shouldn’t we?” They were actively involved in the temple work. What was wrong? Why didn’t they know God? Do you suppose that Eli was busy with the Lord’s work and did not observe the lack of training they were receiving?

David exhorted his son Solomon to “know the God of his father and to serve him with a perfect heart.” I Chronicles 28:9 It is evident from the Scriptures that Solomon did not follow the counsel of his father David. Following his fall we have no record of Solomon changing his life. How sad!
  • For when Solomon was old, his wives turned his heart away after other gods; and his heart was not wholly devoted to the Lord his God, as the heart of David his father had been. 1 Kings 11:4 (NASB)
  • Solomon did what was evil in the sight of the Lord, and did not follow the Lord fully, as David his father had done. 1 Kings 11:6 (NASB)
  • Now the Lord was angry with Solomon because his heart was turned away from the Lord, the God of Israel, who had appeared to him twice,10 and had commanded him concerning this thing, that he should not go after other gods; but he did not observe what the Lord had commanded. 1 Kings 11:9-10 (NASB)

To know God is to experience His forgiveness. This clearly is brought out by the prophet Jeremiah. (See below) The transfer of the quality of forgiveness must occur and will occur when we begin to know God. The writer of Hebrews in the NT wrote about this “new covenant” and referenced this scripture in Jeremiah. Hebrews 8:8-13 Jesus understood this when he taught the disciples to pray. According to this model prayer, God’s forgiveness of us and our forgiveness of others must to be realized. Matthew 6:12.
  • "But this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days," declares the Lord, "I will put My law within them and on their heart I will write it; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people.34 "They will not teach again, each man his neighbor and each man his brother, saying, 'Know the Lord,' for they will all know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them," declares the Lord, "for I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more." Jeremiah 31:33-34 (NASB)


  • Before you knew God personally, you were enslaved to so-called gods that had nothing of the divine about them. 9 But now that you know the real God—or rather since God knows you—how can you possibly subject yourselves again to those paper tigers? Gal 4:8-9 (MSG)

When we say “know God” something needs clarification which Paul makes plain. Any god which is not “the real God” is nothing more than a “paper tiger”. It may look and act like a tiger but in reality is only made of paper. That seems interesting to me. I have read much material about the Trinity God. I find it to be but a “paper tiger”. This God might look real by its definition but is not authentic for it only appears on paper. The “One God of Israel” is genuine. Many millions have subjected themselves to a god which is only a “paper tiger”.
  • “Hear O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is One.” Deuteronomy 6:4.
At the beginning of this commentary I quoted from Jesus prayer:
  • John 17:3 And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.

Careful attention must be made—and it is linked to eternal life—to Him who is the “only true God”. All throughout history there has been no small supply of gods. Gods have been worshiped which were made of stone, of wood, of wood overlaid with gold or silver, gods in the sky, and gods in the earth, and gods under the earth.

If there is (and truly there is) a true and real God; how do you suppose He feels about his creation bowing down to that which is truly not God? I’ll tell you how he feels, “He don’t like it a little bit.” He didn’t like it when Israel did it; he didn’t like it when the early church did it; and he don’t like it when we do it either. Remember the first commandment: “Thou shalt have no other gods before me.” Exodus 20:4 and “Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image.” Verse 5 It appears from the impression given by those words, written with the “finger of God,” that God is very displeased when his creation worships anyone or any thing other than him. Deuteronomy 9:10

What difference do you suppose there is in a god made of stone or wood and a god contained only in the creeds of men, written in pen and ink? We can talk about how we make gods out of our money, our jobs or a million other things; but you and I know that “the finger of God” was not addressing those things, either in Exodus 20 or in Deuteronomy. God was addressing religious false worship.
  • Some people say, quite rightly, that idols have no actual existence, that there's nothing to them, that there is no God other than our one God, 5 that no matter how many of these so-called gods are named and worshiped they still don't add up to anything but a tall story. 6 They say—again, quite rightly—that there is only one God the Father, that everything comes from him, and that he wants us to live for him. Also, they say that there is only one Master—Jesus the Messiah—and that everything is for his sake, including us. Yes. It's true. 1 Cor 8:4-6 (MSG)


I really like the MSG translation of that Corinthian passage. “There is no God other than our one God.” I invite you to own that statement about God. Don’t leave it unclaimed on the pages of the Bible. “Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.” James 2:19 (KJV) When we say that there is no God other than our one God, we are claiming for ourselves, God as our God. God wants us to be connected to him. He wants to be our God.

Moses said: “The Lord our God is one Lord:” Deut. 6:4 A God we must love with all our heart, soul and might; A God we need to talk to our children about when sitting at home; to speak of while walking by the way; to make sure that our family remembers when we lie down or rise up.
  • David said that the LORD was his rock, fortress, deliverer, shield, high tower, and saviour. David said I cried to my God. 2 Sam. 22:2-7.
  • Jesus taught us to pray “Our Father which art in heaven.” Matthew 6:9 He recognized God as his Father and our Father; which makes him our brother. Hebrews 2:11
  • Paul wrote about “God our Father” to the Corinthians, the Ephesians, the Philippians, the Colossians, the Thessalonians, Timothy and Philemon.

We must connect with God in our lives and with his Son Jesus. How can that connection come about? Jesus’ instructions on the surface might seem complicated, but as we look deeper we will find it is not. Ask the Lord Jesus to help you to try those instructions on, fitting them to your needs:
  • Jesus resumed talking to the people, but now tenderly. "The Father has given me all these things to do and say. This is a unique Father-Son operation, coming out of Father and Son intimacies and knowledge. No one knows the Son the way the Father does, nor the Father the way the Son does. But I'm not keeping it to myself; I'm ready to go over it line by line with anyone willing to listen. 28 "Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you'll recover your life. I'll show you how to take a real rest. 29 Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won't lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. 30 Keep company with me and you'll learn to live freely and lightly." Matt 11:27-30 (MSG)

Hopefully this essay on Knowing God and His Son will prove to move you in that direction. Don’t be satisfied with simply collecting facts. Dig deep into what you know about them. “Learn the unforced rhythms of grace.” “Walk with Jesus and observe how he did it.” Observe with clarity the words we have which both Jesus and His Father said. Are you “burned out on religion?” Get to know God and His Son and "recover your life.”


  • Matthew 4:15 The land of Zabulon, and the land of Nephthalim, by the way of the sea, beyond Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles; 16 The people which sat in darkness saw great light; and to them which sat in the region and shadow of death light is sprung up.

Who are the people who sit in darkness if not those of us who are looking for a ray of hope? Perhaps it is you? The darkness of life often overwhelms us; don’t you think? Whether it be bad health; the loss of a job; relationship problems; or any more of a dozen reasons; one thing is for sure; we need a ray of hope.
  • "For behold, darkness will cover the earth And deep darkness the peoples; Isaiah 60:2 (NASB)

The light that shined in Bethlehem so long ago offers a ray of hope for the entire world. Many of our citizens here in the US, as well as other nations of the world, are desperately looking for a ray of hope. They are wondering “Where are the jobs they have been promised by their government?” They are contemplating their future and the future of their families in the light of current realities. Many of our relatives and friends are searching the horizon for a tiny bit of sunshine. Their health has cast a dark shadow over any hope for the future. They need to get the message which was delivered by the angels to the shepherds:

Oh how that message resonates in our hearts at Christmas as well as all other seasons of the year! Do those words bring hope to your situation in life or are you looking for something else to bring a needed ray of hope for you and your family? How might you express your needs today?

Haggai the prophets reminded of a time when God’s voice shook the earth and prophesized of the time when he would shake not only the earth but heaven as well. The writer of Hebrews referred to this passage. Heb. 12:26 The wonderful thing immerging from this great shaking will be that “the desire of all nations will come”. Jesus fulfills the desire of all the nations: the desire for peace, love and sustenance of life. The nations of the world are looking for a ray of hope.
  • I will shake all nations, and the desire of all nations shall come: and I will fill this house with glory, saith the LORD of hosts. Hag 2:7 (KJV)

I am so glad that Jesus stands at the epicenter of my life. He continues to be the determining factor that makes the distinct change in my life. For 63 years he has made the difference for me. (I was eleven when I believed the gospel and was immersed in the waters of baptism) My hope for the future, which for all intents and purposes gets shorter and shorter every day, is through the Son of God. Do you have a hope for your future? The baby in the manger; the teacher who preached the gospel of the kingdom giving a ray of hope to his listeners; the Christ on the cross by whose stripes we gain healing; and the coming king of the earth; he is the hope for the world.

He is my ray of sunshine in the darkness that covers the earth and the gross darkness that covers the people today. I shutter to think of where I would be today without Christ Jesus in my life. I am a sinner saved by grace. I am so glad to be a Christian. It’s great to be a child of God. Being a Christian brings peace and blessing to my life every day.

I am reminded every year of the prayer list which appears in our worship folders at the church where I pastor. On a particular Sunday in December of 2005, there were seventeen names on that list. That seems a lot considering our small size. In December 2011; out of that list of 17 dear people, nine precious souls have been lost to the enemy death (Contrary to the way many think, death is not a friend, it is an enemy. I Corin. 15:26) reminding us how much we need hope? Where should we look for a ray of sunshine in this darkness?
  • For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope. Romans 15:4 (KJV)

Let me point you again as I have throughout my years of ministry to comforting words of the Bible. There, is the primary place we can find a ray of sunshine for our darkened hearts. The recent losses of the past few weeks continue to speak to us of our need for hope. During this time we have lost two more of our small number to death. Paul wrote words of comfort and hope to the Thessalonians. They needed this comfort lest they sorrow as others who have no hope. Many of those who are ignorant or perhaps, uninformed, or even misinformed about those who have fallen “asleep”, lack the comfort that they desire. Paul’s words of comfort were such, because they came by “by the word of the Lord”. I Thess. 4:13-15

It is only through the patience and comfort of the scriptures (OT) as well as the words of the Lord Jesus, his apostles, and Luke and Paul that we have hope today. It is great to have hope in Christ for today and today’s needs; but as Paul said, “If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.” I Corin. 15:19. We desperately need a “solid” hope for the future.

My prayer list changes from time to time. The special needs are there all the time but across the years those on the list move from being “the living in Christ who are battling the problems of life” to being “the dead in Christ”. However, because of the Babe born in Bethlehem; who grew up to minister to human beings much like you and I, they will one day be “the living in Christ” again. Ah! Let’s listen to that message again:
  • Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. 11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. 12 And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. 13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, 14 Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men. Luke 2:10-14 (KJV)


Listen to a part of the letter which Jeremiah sent from Jerusalem to the rest of the elders of the exile, the priests, the prophets and all the people whom Nebuchadnezzar had taken into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon. Jer 29:1 (NASB)
  • "For thus says the Lord, 'When seventy years have been completed for Babylon, I will visit you and fulfill My good word to you, to bring you back to this place.11 'For I know the plans that I have for you,' declares the Lord, 'plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope. Jer 29:10-11 (NASB)

At that time many of the children of Israel were looking desperately for a ray of hope. They felt that God had forsaken them and needed to hear the words in the letter which Jeremiah wrote. The message included God’s assurance:
  • “I know what I'm doing. I have it all planned out—plans to take care of you, not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for.” Jer 29:11 (MSG)

We need to hear God’s message sent from Jeremiah as well.
  • “I know what I'm doing. I have it all planned out—plans to take care of you, not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for.” Jer 29:11 (MSG)

What is in the future you hope for? None of us can have any assurance for the future outside of the “word of the Lord”. (This we say unto you by the word of the Lord) (That we through the patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.)

Over the years your name and mine will be included on a list of concern by someone if not by a group of someones. Perhaps cancer will be the reason; or perhaps a stroke; maybe a heart attack; or just old age will remind us how much hope grows even more precious as the years go by.