June 4


Download

Exodus 34:1-37:24

We are in the World Stream learning about the building of the Tabernacle. We are reading from the New Living Translation this week.

7streamsmethod.com | @7StreamsMethod | @serenatravis | #7Stream | Donate

Commentary by Dr. Drake Travis

“Thank you Lord for second chances, for grace unending, for love that never fails, for rest, and for caring so much that your top concern for us is that we find you, walk with you, and are well, May we be found faithful in what you have asked us to build in your Name.  Amen”

34 – The Lord makes a second inscription of the Ten Commandments since Moses broke the original last time he came down the mountain.  The rerun for Moses is overwhelming, the worship that God’s Presence brought upon Moses is most impressive.  God gives Moses a few reminders to be sure and assert upon and teach the Israelites so that they live long godly healthy lives.  The time Moses spent with God; the Light of the World, even affected Moses’ face so that it glowed too.
35 –  The Sabbath Law is presented to the people again.  And then comes the occasion of the offering for the making of the Tabernacle and the articles therein.  The list of items to bring forward is presented.  The articles to be built from the offerings are listed and then the excitement begins as each went back to their tents to gather what they would bring as their offering for the Lord.  The Spirit moved in a touching way over the people.  Hearts were stirred for generosity.  Women got going and got sewing. Gems were brought forth. It really was a worship experience.  Bezalel and Oholiab were presented as the ones who would lead the project and teach others their skills as well.
36 – The work began and a wonderful “problem” occurred in that people were still bringing offerings beyond what was needed to complete the Tabernacle.  This is a pastor’s dream, btw. Imagine having to tell people to stop bringing offerings because it was excessive! Halelujah, what a problem  🙂  The work commences. After all these instructions and the drama of the Ten Commandments.  It had to be something to take part in this. There is no hint of the usual attitudes or complaining.  The atmosphere is abuzz as all are jumping in to do what they can to see this structure go up as their “house of God” in the desert.
37 – Then the time came to make the Ark of the Covenant.  It is amazing the way this box has entranced the religious world for 33-34 centuries. The Raiders of the Lost Ark was a landmark piece of cinema. The arguments about the Ark’s location even today can make one’s ears tingle. Well here in Exodus 37 is where it started. The gold, the gold, the gold!  It has to be beauty that challenged anyone’s ability to describe such a thing. Then the table was made, the lampstand, and the incense altar.  There was so much gold involved in the Tabernacle endeavor.  There would be more than a ton of gold involved in the building of all this by the time of completion.  We will complete the project next week and marvel at what God does once His house is built!

June 3


Download

I Corinthians 10-12

We are in the Church Stream reading from the Modern English Version this week.

7streamsmethod.com | @7StreamsMethod | @serenatravis | #7Stream | Donate

Commentary by Dr. Drake Travis

Thank you God for another week together as we spent a day in each stream of Your Scripture. Your Word is truly our guide and handbook for a good life in you and a good eternity with you.  We thank you with our lives as our offering to you.  Amen.=

10 – Paul wants those who are following Christ, in fellowship, and taking communion to continue in their faith and to do so in a holy manner.  Some were endangering their faith by taking part in wrongful practices – the habits from their former lives in the ungodly world. The illustration of the Exodus is a brilliant parallel for them. They had left Egypt and were ‘baptized’ being brought through the Red Sea. They were, however, not in the Promised Land…not yet! And those who strayed enroute, in the desert, died in the desert. In this day as before, they had been saved from bondage, they were on pilgrimage, but however, they needed to hang on to their holy faith in reverence, lest they be cast away and ‘die in the desert’ – not reaching the Promised Land of Paradise. Those parallelisms from Exodus applied in Corinth, and they apply today. Paul assures them that God will protect them as they hang onto their faith.  The living in lust, the complaining, the idolatry and the dabbling in the demonic – all that had to go!  Paul reminds that whatever we do, it must be all for the glory of God and the edifying of one another.
11 – The matter of headcoverings is far less contentious than some of the nervy feminists that have slipped into the church make it out to be. Paul is addressing an era wherein women had their heads covered in public unless they were “women of the night” / prostitutes / or just plain “loose” women.  Women were joining churches; and in various cases coming to Christ more readily than some reticent men and/or their husbands were.  The freedom in Christ was tremendously alluring to women of the world who, in the pre-Christian era, were seen as property, not much above slaves, and in many situations lower than the household pets. These women came to church and were so overjoyed that they would remove their head coverings in elation.  To some this was perceived as “gee, she joined a church, now she looks like a hooker! What is going on in that church anyway?!” <– This is what Paul is addressing.  He isn’t trying to jerk anyone around or squash women. He’s not trying to keep women under clothing tents as some cultures do even today. He simply is reminding Christian women to look different than women of ill-reputations.  He also wants women to not try to take over the churches but to be subject to the men who were in charge. All studies show that when there is an institution wherein the women take it over, the men don’t fight it – they just leave it (they “go fishing”) and they don’t come back. If this were to happen unchecked, the next generation would involuntarily leave; 75% of them. Once a second generation passes through, it would be all but dead. Guaranteed, if Paul had not addressed this matter, the Church would have been a phenomenon of the first century; a completely abandoned movement by 200 A.D. at the latest. That cannot happen.
-As for the communion, this too needed to be returned to its purpose. The Corinthians were turning communion into a lavish food contest; the rich were flaunting, and the poor were excluded from the table, others were ingesting wayyyy too much wine. What was started by Jesus at the Last Supper was turning into a “Roman food orgy”.  Christ was long forgotten for them.  So thankfully Paul [very appropriately] laid out the structure of what the communion was to be and how it was to be, who was to take part and under what conditions.
12 – This is the spiritual gifts chapter.  I love it when a sports commentator refers to someone as a gifted athlete.  [. . . whogave them that gift? or are we allowed to ask question in public anymore?]  Paul was explaining that each person’s gift(s) that were employed were to bless the body of Believers and the Kingdom as a whole as a gift.  Gifts are something we are excited about, grateful for, they are useful for blessing and building.  They are not to be issues to squabble over or compete with, or to use to get ugly toward others over !  These gifts of wisdom, knowledge, faith, healings, miracles, prophecy, languages (to bless and reach others for the gospel) were just that; GIFTS from God to build and bless.  They were one body and each played a part of that body for God’s glory.  No one was better than another.  Within that, the teachers were highly reverenced and therefore worthy of double honor.  But that only made them subject to more spiritual scrutiny – it was not for lording over others.  They were to abide with each other, call upon each other, honor one another, assist one another, bless and cover for each other, ad infinitum. For we are the unshakeable and unending Kingdom of God.
Looking back on this week – the details seemed of paramount importance:  The details of the
Tabernacle were intricate and manifold. This would be where God visited them. No slop allowed. Interesting that in the middle of this 15 chapter long section of scripture there is the golden calf incident to provide disgusting contrast of what it looks like when a people have no mind for details – only their latest urges to party like hyenas.
-the details following the aging and passing of David are quite interwoven. There are residual attitudes that needed to be addressed in a precise manner. Each one is dealt with properly and specifically – especially the rebels. David gave clear orders for Solomon to follow (Sol. could have paid better attention to this and to the details of the Law, yes?)
-The Psalms are classics and it is a issue of precision that David keeps his attitude properly segregated in that he remains adverse in heart to his enemies and yielded in heart to his God. Too many that we meet along the way in life, run into trouble from an adversarial person (who happens to be quite against God) and too many come away from something like this angry . . . at God – for something God didn’t do!  Let’s keep our emotional details straight here!!
-in Jeremiah, the details of Judah’s destruction, Jeremiah’s sorrow and preservation, his need to remain celebate, to not engage in the locals follies or ceremonies, to remain fixed on God, to keep the Sabbath and remind others of the same – these are details of dire importance.
-the famine that Joel tells of was a matter that, perhaps God could have gotten through to them some other way but, apparently no other detail worked on them.  So God used this. When people ignore God’s details for them nothing gets their attention like a fast.  And, uh, the storehouses were empty along with the fields – a detail that could not be ignored.
-the details of Jesus final days are astonishing. The specifics of the woman who anoints Jesus are the stuff of legend!–>and still talked about all over the world. Jesus makes numerous predictions and each is spot on. The Sanhedrin try to accuse Jesus but what doesn’t add up?…the details of their accusations! And it forever ought stick in our minds that Judas; who despises Jesus, kisses him (before killing himself) while Peter, who screams against Jesus, is committed to Him unto death and therefore has a triumphant ministry that shook a continent.
-the detailed gifts that God gives to His followers are numerous and wonderful. Do yourself a favor and read through them all again today.  Open yours and use it, Halleluia.

June 2


Mark 14

We are in the Christ Stream and reading from the Modern English Version this week.

7streamsmethod.com | @7StreamsMethod | @serenatravis | #7Stream | Donate

Commentary by Dr. Drake Travis

Jesus, do not let us forget how much we matter to you.  Your willingness to suffer; your “passion” is proof of your determination to redeem us. Increase our faith and love so that you – our Savior are our greatest joy and passion in return.  Amen.
This chapter contains the events leading up to the crucifixion. Jesus is in his final days before he is laid in a tomb and the world, at all levels, is about to change forever.

plot to kill Jesus – The elders, chief priests, scribes were from this point beyond determined to have Jesus killed. [Matt. 26 gives slightly more detail if you are curious to compare] About a month prior they were musing the topic rather seriously.  Killing Jesus had first crossed their minds almost a year before. Now, with a few days before Passover, it was a manic decision. They would lose their pompous positions and their world would crumble permanently (as they saw it) if the didn’t rid Jesus quickly; THIS WEEK.

anointing in Bethany – a sinful woman (Lk. 7:37 makes this most obvious) breaks open a bottle of costly perfume and pours the entire contents over Jesus. It was what we would call a $55,000.- offering in current rates. Would you have done this? Would you have grumbled like the Pharisees? No one knew He was going to rise from the dead – they had heard but did anyone know ?. They didn’t know he was the one who would be eternally referred to as the second person of the Trinity. They didn’t know that this man getting doted on in virtual worship was the Creator at work (Colossians 1:16 – check it!) and right there in the flesh in front of them. How would you react to $55k being poured out.  The Pharisees mocked that it could have been given to the poor v.s. expended on a religious person. Gee, have you ever heard a phoney leader pontificate about caring for the poor when they are loaded personally and, in truth, don’t care about the poor at all?!  It happens all the time!
betrayal by Judas – This happens and it’s painfully comical that Judas thinks he is pulling this stunt off, that he is going to be “set financially”, that Jesus is not going to find out, and Judas is doing the intelligent thing.  The prior story is a woman who loves Jesus with no regard for cost. Here is a poser who has spent three years with Jesus, he thinks very little of it here on the brink, and for Judas, it is all about the cost. What can he get.  btw, Judas is still bitterly regretting his decision today.
preparation for Passover – This prescription by Jesus is rather telling (if Judas thinks he can keep something a secret from Jesus). Here is Jesus sending them ahead for the Passover and Jesus predicts every step of the journey to the upper room. It’s amazing. If any of us want to know how to prepare for the future, why consult anyone else but Jesus?  Just a thought!
a betrayer called out – Jesus calls it spot on that someone at the table was a ‘rat’; pardon the NYCity term.  Crazy to think that Judas doesn’t fess up and beg for mercy.  There’s no smart way to analyze this.  There’s no smart way to turn against Jesus either, people.  Jesus final line here makes the blood run cold: “It would be better for that man if he had not been born.”
The Lord’s Supper – Lk 22:15ff is a bit more descriptive, It has the “do this in remembrance of me” part that we recite each communion…. once a month for most of us – so we remember
what Jesus did for us.  Matt and Mark have a very similar rendition of this part. All that to say, the new covenant was upon them.  Jesus body and blood was the matter of the new covenant. The old covenant was not sufficient. It was sustaining, but no one was saved from it. This was needed to verify that Salvation is bought and brought to us through Jesus. And we are to remember this!
Peter’s denial foretold – This was a tough one that is a key pillar is Peter’s pilgrimage. He personally thought he was the most committed disciple. Jesus wanted him to know that God’s grace is what we hinge out souls and our destiny upon – not personal resolve or grit. Peter might have known better to just hear and listen and take it in v.s. try to rebutt Jesus.  I mean, Jesus knows all.  He knows us far beyond what we do.  He saw through Judas, he called it for the disciples so they could prepare the Passover. Jesus knows. But Peter tries to correct Jesus. (can you hear the “wrong answer” buzzer? I can.  Oh well, this only ground it in deeper that Peter needs to trust Jesus, not himself.  He’ll know by midnight.
Prayer in Gethsemane – In case anyone hasn’t heard, “Gethse – mah-nee” is Hebrew for ‘olive press’.  Jesus went to pray here and this same olive garden can be visited today.  It is among the most prominent and painful prayers we ever read.  Jesus is so sorrowful. And the disciples penchant and sleepiness could probably be attributed to denial that led to depression that couldn’t be acknowledged – thus the oppressive sleepiness.  They feel asleep three times on Jesus!  Then “some guests” arrive . . . !
Betrayal and Arrest of Jesus – Judas arrives leading the soldiers and chief priests and alerted these thugs who Jesus was … his code was to kiss Jesus.  Hmmm. He did. They had found this threat, this “false leader” and they arrested Jesus.
Pause and think: who is committed to you? The one who kisses you? The one who denies and curses and swears he doesn’t know you? It appeared that Peter wasn’t committed and that Judas was… not all who scream are untrue to you.  Not all who kiss you, care about you. Point to ponder here!
The Young Man who Fled – this is an illustration how quickly everyone wanted to get away from Jesus.  Not only were false Messiahs killed – their followers were killed also. This was the typical tactic to crush a rebellion. He is as determined to get out of there as Joseph was to get away from Potiphar’s wife when he jumped out of his own coat in Genesis 39:12.  This man
does the same and more.  Peter takes a swing at the high priest’s slave and cuts his ear off. Again, he is committed to defend Jesus and is willing to prove it and does. Jn. 18:10 tells that it’s Peter who did this.  The others don’t specify.
Jesus before the Sanhedrin – Peter is following but keeping his distance as the phoney and illegal trial progesses.  The proceedings are illicit. The testimonies are rigged.  The story line doesn’t add up or line up.  The testimonies don’t agree.  Come come gentlemen, you are trying to conVICT an innocent man who is not a CONvict.  Good luck jokers.  All the same the false trial begins and they are soon brutally abusing Jesus.
Peter denies knowing Jesus – The High Priest’s maid pegged Peter.  She recognized him, deciphered his accent as a Galilean, she rallied others to call it what it was.  Peter panicked and swore and denied the obvious three times just before the rooster crowed.  This is the reality. But the truth is far more important. Jesus called it exactly as it was going to happen.  The finale~ here is Jesus can be trusted and believed and invested in and poured out upon and followed and adhered to and ingested.  Is He worth it? yes.  Are we? No, but He is.     Haleluia