MOVING MOUNTAINS

MUSINGS – June 17

MOVING MOUNTAINS

Matthew 17:14-20
When they came to a crowd, a man came up to Jesus, knelt in front of him, and said, “Sir, have mercy on my son. He suffers from seizures. Often he falls into fire or water. I brought him to your disciples, but they couldn’t cure him.” Jesus replied, “You unbelieving and corrupt generation! How long must I be with you? How long must I put up with you? Bring him here to me!” Jesus ordered the demon to come out of the boy. At that moment the boy was cured. Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and asked, “Why couldn’t we force the demon out of the boy?” He told them, “Because you have so little faith. I can guarantee this truth: If your faith is the size of a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”

I often wonder if Jesus was being literal here and meant using spiritual power alone. Or if he meant we are to believe it can be done and then work toward that goal.

If you’ve ever driven through mountainous areas then you have undoubtedly seen mountains that have been moved. This was done by armies of men who believed that the mountain could be moved. The survivors who measured and charted, the highway designers, the financial backers, the blasters, machine operators, and men with pickaxes and shovels all believed that the mountain could be moved … and they did it.

What mountains in your life need to be moved?

All content (except quotations) © 2018 Thomas E. Williams

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WHO IS HE?

MUSINGSJune 16

WHO IS HE?

Matthew 16:13-17
When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say the Son of Man is?” They answered, “Some say you are John the Baptizer, others Elijah, still others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” He asked them, “But who do you say I am?” Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God!” Jesus replied, “Simon, son of Jonah, you are blessed! No human revealed this to you, but my Father in heaven revealed it to you.

What an amazing question for Jesus to ask. It is often recorded that he knew the unspoken thoughts of those around him.* I believe He asked this question if those closest to Him in order for each of them to face their own questions as to the true identity of their master. And after they had organized their individual thoughts he asked them directly, “Who do you say that I am?”

While other men had looked backward and supposed him to be a long dead prophet brought back to life, Peter looked forward and saw him as the long awaited Messiah. And beyond that he recognized that his master spoke with the authority as only God’s own Son could do.

It is not enough to accept Jesus as a prophet, a preacher, a healer, a teacher, or wise man. He is more than a good man. He is a God man.

Who do you say He is?

*John 2:25, Matthew 12:25, Mark 2:8, Luke 6:8

All content (except quotations) © 2018 Thomas E. Williams

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BALD MESSIAH?

MUSINGSJune 15 2018

BALD MESSIAH?

Matthew 16:5-12
The disciples had forgotten to take any bread along when they went to the other side of the Sea of Galilee. Jesus said to them, “Be careful! Watch out for the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees!” The disciples had been discussing among themselves that they had not taken any bread along. Jesus knew about their conversation and asked, “Why are you discussing among yourselves that you don’t have any bread? You have so little faith! Don’t you understand yet? Don’t you remember the five loaves for the five thousand and how many baskets you filled? Don’t you remember the seven loaves for the four thousand and how many large baskets you filled? Why don’t you understand that I wasn’t talking to you about bread? Watch out for the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees!” Then they understood that he didn’t say to watch out for the yeast in bread, but to watch out for the teachings of the Pharisees and Sadducees.

How frustrated Jesus must have been with those closest to him, when they failed to understand his teachings. I would have torn my hair out, shaken my head and walked away mumbling.

Thankfully, I am not the Messiah. He, instead of ripping out his hair, explained once again the purpose of the story. These were the ones he had chosen to continue his teachings in his absence. How could they be so slow to understand?

But then I have to ask myself, how slow am I to grasp His truths?

All content (except quotations) © 2018 Thomas E. Williams

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SIGNS, SIGNS, EVERYWHERE A SIGN

MUSINGSJune 14 2018

SIGNS, SIGNS, EVERYWHERE A SIGN

Matthew 16:1-4
The Pharisees and Sadducees came to test Jesus. So they asked him to show them a miraculous sign from heaven. He responded to them, “In the evening you say that the weather will be fine because the sky is red. And in the morning you say that there will be a storm today because the sky is red and overcast. You can forecast the weather by judging the appearance of the sky, but you cannot interpret the signs of the times. “Evil and unfaithful people look for a miraculous sign. But the only sign they will be given is that of Jonah.” Then he left them standing there and went away.

This passage reminded me of the song “Signs” by the The 5 Man Electrical Band. After seeing many signs telling him to keep out … you don’t belong here … you don’t look like us … your not a member, he found the following sign:

And the sign said, “Everybody welcome. Come in, kneel down and pray”
But when they passed around the plate at the end of it all, I didn’t have a penny to pay.
So I got me a pen and a paper and I made up my own little sign
I said, “Thank you, Lord, for thinkin’ ’bout me. I’m alive and doin’ fine.”*

What does your “sign” say to the people around you?

*Writer/s: LES EMMERSON
Publisher: Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Warner/Chappell Music, Inc.

All content (except quotations) © 2018 Thomas E. Williams

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STORIES

MUSINGS – June 13 2018

STORIES

Mark 4:33-34
“Jesus spoke God’s word to them using many illustrations like these. In this way people could understand what he taught. He did not speak to them without using an illustration. But when he was alone with his disciples, he explained everything to them.”

Psalm 78 begins, Open your ears to my teachings, my people. Turn your ears to the words from my mouth. I will open my mouth to illustrate points. I will explain what has been hidden long ago, things that we have heard and known about

That is exactly what Jesus did. Here told stories about things and events that the listeners knew. And in these seemingly simple stories he revealed hidden truths. The stories were some enough that people could pass them on to others.

What stories have you shared?

All content (except quotations) © 2018 Thomas E. Williams

THE ROOT OF ALL GOODNESS

MUSINGS – June 12 2018

THE ROOT OF ALL GOODNESS

1 Corinthians 13:1-3
I may speak in the languages of humans and of angels. But if I don’t have love, I am a loud gong or a clashing cymbal. I may have the gift to speak what God has revealed, and I may understand all mysteries and have all knowledge. I may even have enough faith to move mountains. But if I don’t have love, I am nothing. I may even give away all that I have and give up my body to be burned. But if I don’t have love, none of these things will help me.

In 1 Timothy 6:10 Paul wrote, “Certainly, the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil.” However in 1 Corinthians chapter 13 he goes on and on about what true love is and does. He clearly demonstrates that love is the root of all goodness.

Make it your mission to show a little love to everyone you meet today.

All content (except quotations) © 2018 Thomas E. Williams

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YOUR GIFT IS GIVEN TO GIVE

MUSINGS – June ,11 2018

YOUR GIFT IS GIVEN TO GIVE

1 Corinthians 12:4-11
There are different spiritual gifts, but the same Spirit gives them. There are different ways of serving, and yet the same Lord is served. There are different types of work to do, but the same God produces every gift in every person. The evidence of the Spirit’s presence is given to each person for the common good of everyone. The Spirit gives one person the ability to speak with wisdom. The same Spirit gives another person the ability to speak with knowledge. To another person the same Spirit gives courageous faith. To another person the same Spirit gives the ability to heal. Another can work miracles. Another can speak what God has revealed. Another can tell the difference between spirits. Another can speak in different kinds of languages. Another can interpret languages. There is only one Spirit who does all these things by giving what God wants to give to each person.

I’d you do a Google search for spiritual gifts you will come up with countless resources on how to discover your gift etc. My personal feeling about that is: if the Spirit has given you a gift, you are using it whether you know it or not.

The reason I believe that is because, whatever your gift, it was given to you not for you. It was not there for you to brag about it or to exploit. It was given for the common good.

If I have an ability to immerse myself into the scriptures and see things that others might miss. If I did not share those insights they would not be used “for the common good”.

All content (except quotations) © 2018 Thomas E. Williams

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