September 22, 2016

Psalms - 98-102 - 
Sing to God a brand new song.  He’s made a world of wonders!...On your feet now---applaud God!     

Bring a gift of laughter, sing yourselves into His presence.  Enter with the password:  ”Thank you!” Make yourselves at home, talking praise.  Thank him.  Worship him.  For God is sheer beauty, all-generous in love, loyal always and ever.  

I’m doing the best I can, and I’m doing it at home where it counts...  

I have my eye on salt-of-the-earth people--they are the one’s I want working with me;  men and women on the straight and narrow--these are the ones I want on my side...

God, listen!  Listen to my prayer, listen to the pain of my cries.  Don’t turn your back on me just when I need you so desperately.  Pay attention!  This is a cry for help!  And hurry--this can’t wait! ...

Yet you, God, are sovereign still, always and ever sovereign...                              

Matthew 2 - 
- The prophet Micah wrote it plainly: “its you, Bethlehem, in Judah’s land, no longer bringing up the rear.  From you will come the leader who will shepherd-rule my people, my Israel.”  

The scholars from the East arrived and were “Overwhelmed, kneeled and worshiped him.” In a dream, they were warned not to report back to Herod.  So they worked out another route, left the territory without being seen, and returned to their own country.  After the scholars were gone, God’s angels showed up again in Joseph’s dream and commanded  him to take Mary & Jesus to Egypt. Joseph obeyed... 

- The Egyptian exile fulfilled what Hosea had preached: “I called my son out of Egypt.”...Herod commanded the murder of every little boy, two and under, who lived in Bethlehem and the surrounding hills.  
That’s when Jeremiah’s sermon was fulfilled;  “A sound was heard in Ramah, weeping and much lament.  Rachel weeping for her children, Rachel refusing all solace, her children gone, dead and buried.”  

Later when Herod died, God’s angel appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt to return to Israel.  Joseph obeyed. When he heard that Archelaus had succeeded his father, Herod, he was afraid to go there.  But then Joseph was directed in a dream to go to the hills of Galilee.  On arrival, he settled in the village of Nazareth.  
This move was a fulfillment of the prophetic words, “He shall be called a Nazarene.”