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February, 2015

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Our Family of Promises ~ JC Calkins

Posted: February 27th, 2015 | Category: belief, Christianity | Comments

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Israel, a land, a people and a nation. God’s land, His chosen people, His promised and prophesied nation. It’s not simply an isolated nation of Jews, but of a heritage richer than any other. This rising nation is both ancient and futuristic. It is multi-cultural-lingual-spiritual and generational. It’s a prosperous flagship of freedom and diversity. There is one undeniable fact which MUST be understood by every Christian, our roots are deeply entrenched, our faith permanently embedded and our spiritual promises joyfully anchored to this land which borders a Dead Sea, a Mediterranean oasis and several contiguous lands occupied by differing peoples, expectations and lifestyles. Israel however, by divine authority, does not answer to other peoples or nations, it answers first and foremost to God. “Listen obediently, Israel. Do what you’re told so that you’ll have a good life, a life of abundance and bounty, just as GOD promised, in a land abounding in milk and honey. Attention, Israel! GOD, our God! GOD the one and only! Love GOD, your God, with your whole heart: love him with all that’s in you, love him with all you’ve got! ” (Deuteronomy 6:3-5 MSG). Most of the people Israel understand and do this and so must we. We, as Christians are grafted into and onto a heritage which runs as deeply in our souls as does the DNA of our bodies. There are the chosen people and there are the people who have chosen Jesus. We are spiritual siblings, because our Father in heaven is also their Father in heaven, all of whom have grown out of God’s promises, not anyone’s loins or heritage. The only problematic differentiator between present day Christians and Jews, is whether the Messiah is coming for the first or second time? This seems as irrelevant to this writer, in this moment, as time itself must seem to our shared eternal God. God is beyond time and as such, time quickly becomes irrelevant. In answer to a prayer recently, Jesus awakened me with these words, [My people are our people and our interests are shared.] Jesus came to us, not simply as a Jew, but as the loving face of God. He’ll surely come again, eliminating any lingering questions or doubts as to His first appearance and identity. In the meantime, God will continue to roll out His plan, iron out our wrinkles and reveal Himself to all of this world.

Israel has favored nation status with God and it’s history reveals much of God’s Will to us. He so loves Israel that it was to be both the divine birth and burial place of His beloved Son, whom we (Gentiles and Messianic Jews alike) follow still and forever. It’s also where the Messiah (our Lord) shall return to. We, the people of God, are an intricately woven tapestry of life, which was permanently conceived and beautifully rendered for all of time. We call this tapestry God’s plan, but it’s so much more than that. Every thread of this divine tapestry (us) has been hand selected and placed in exactly the right place for exactly the right result. God uses us, those whom He’s chosen and those who’ve chosen to love Him, to reveal more of His Will every day and in every local and generation. It’s been that way for thousands of our years. Without Israel as our spiritual roots, our faith will begin or continue to wither and crumble. Whether our brothers are of DNA or grafting, they are still our brothers, neighbors and family. We are all God’s Believers. We are 2.5 billion strong and our brother nation of 14 million needs us to stand solidly by them. That is God’s will too. Loving God, nation and family should present no conflicts, until others try to separate or conflict us with their deceptions and distractions. We are brothers through God’s promise and always shall be. “It is not as though God’s word had failed. For not all who are descended from Israel are Israel. Nor because they are his descendants are they all Abraham’s children. On the contrary, “It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned.” In other words, it is not the children by physical descent who are God’s children, but it is the children of the promise who are regarded as Abraham’s offspring.” (Romans 9:6-8 NIV). That’s us my friends and our family needs each and every one of us now. Their tribulations are our tribulations, to be shared for better or for worse. We must support their stronghold for our own good as well as theirs.

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The Hour Glass ~ JC Calkins

Posted: February 5th, 2015 | Category: belief, Christ Follower | Comments

726 years before the world would change forever, there was a prophet named Isaiah, he had a conversation with Ahaz, a man whom at the age of twenty had become the King of Judah. God was not happy with his chosen people, He was not pleased with the care taking of His promised land. God picked Isaiah to reveal and unleash His voice on earth and to tell His people of His displeasure. His people had become imperfect perfectionists, at… read more

Is That A Rule? ~ JC Calkins

Posted: February 3rd, 2015 | Category: Uncategorized | Comments

How might we feel and what might we do, if we learned that we only had a 1% chance of winning what would be guaranteed as the most important final game of our life. Would we rise to the challenge or simply give up and walk away? Those odds are slim. Would we seek out the best in the business to help us train and improve our odds? Would it matter if we knew we were more serious about this game than… read more