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Let the Light Break Through!

When God called Gideon to lead Israel against their enemies, He wanted to show that a small army empowered by God was more effective than the largest armies. But notice how they fought – without weapons that an army would normally use. They fought with shofars and lamps! They fought with weapons that the world would consider ineffective, yet triumphed mightily over their enemies. They shouted as loud as they could, sounded the shofar, and broke the vessels that held the fire so that their lamps burst through with brightness.

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The Joy of the Lord is your Strength!

Tonight begins the Biblical feast of Sukkot (Feast of Tabernacles) throughout the world! Roughly 2500 years ago, there was a special Sukkot celebration in Jerusalem. The people of Israel were exiled and dispersed all across the Babylonian empire. Later, they were given the right to return and start construction on the 2nd temple of Israel. Nehemiah 8 speaks of the special celebration that happened at that time. We read how Ezra taught the people out of the book of the law and how they responded in weeping and repentance before the God of Israel.

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Rejoice, this is the day that the Lord has made!

There is an important lesson here and in other places of God's Word, namely that humility and gladness go together. What do the humble and the joyous have in common? They both look up. The humble are those who don't look down on anyone. The truly humble look up all the time. They have to look up, because their eyes are on God, and He's above them. The joyous are always looking up as well, otherwise they wouldn't be rejoicing. The joyous are believing the Good News, so they rejoice!

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Trust Him to Complete What He Started!

The Bible begins with the creation of the heavens and earth, and ends with the creation of a new heavens and a new earth. Thus the Word of God delineates a complete story of everything from the beginning of the created world to the unending eternity toward which we are headed. The scripture also identifies Yeshua as the firstborn over all creation, [Colossians 1:15] and thus the Lord of all time.

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Mourning will be turned to joy!

On Saturday night, throughout Israel, on the 17th of Tammuz, Jewish people from around the world will fast and begin a three week period of mourning leading into Tish B'Av (9th of Av).  On this day, according to Jewish tradition, Moses shattered the Ten Commandments after he returned from Mount Sinai to witness the children of Israel worshiping a golden calf. In coming devotionals, we will recount the numerous tragic events associated with the 9th of Av, and sorrowfully remembered by Jews each year, but today I want to focus on the events particularly connected to this unique day, Tammuz 17.

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Dying to be free!

Once upon a time, there was a prince who received a very rare and beautiful bird. He named her Goldie and placed her in a lovely, 14K gold cage. But the poor creature was not impressed by the gold at all. She pleaded for her freedom but the prince loved her much too much to part with her. Still, she continued to beg. In final desperation, she asked that he at least allow her go to her relatives and tell them that, though captive, she was still alive.

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