explosive material which reduces to seconds a process which could take months or years to achieve by other methods.
So when a building or bridge or something big needs destroyed, cleared, or redone it takes planning, perfect placement, and controlled explosives that reduce any major outward damage.
So again back on June 25th, Jesus late at night after a bible study imploded all around me. That night I realized who Jesus was to me and how I wanted Him to be to me. I saw Him as glorious and worthy for the first time in my life with my life.
You see I was already a christian. I believed in Jesus as my messiah. Boiling that down, I believe God and Jesus at the beginning of time, really before time itself decided that Jesus would come to this earth and give up his life at 30 something years of age on a cross and then three days later come back to life. Why He did this? As a believer or christian I believe because of a word "covenant".
Why am I talking about Covenants you say?!
I don't want to talk about such a heavy topic. Really Jesus? You want me, small 27 year old Emily, a girl whose can't write, to share in the Covenant of you. The 'good news' or 'the gospel' as the bible calls it. Jesus your crazy to think I can do this. But I'm going to try, TRY to share with you fine people what I have learned about this word 'covenant'.
Well if you have read my past blog post you know I love a good dictionary definition so first things first....
Covenant: An Agreement or promise between two or more parties.
Lets rewind a bit and talk about a guy named Moses. To keep this part short, though almost impossible. Moses was born at a really bad time. There was a king who didn't dig the Israelite people. Which Moses happen to be. So this king was brutal toward them and made them slaves. He also wanted some population control so he ordered the midwives to kill any newborn Israelite boy born. (you can find this scripture in Exodus chapter 1-2).
So Moses was born at this exact time and God of course knowing all, made sure to protect this little perfect baby boy. Its a childhood bible story. Mom hides baby til she can't anymore. Weaves a basket to act as a boat and sends her little baby boy down the Nile. The kings daughter who as history states, couldn't have babies, sees this baby and takes him as her own!
There is more to his young life but keeping this short he grows up with this princess mother and is given the best possible life ever. He has many riches, an education to envy, and is trained in all areas of life as a young man.
Okay so Moses is called by God to give up that life in Egypt where he grew up by the way, and be with his people, the Israelites. The slaves to the Egyptians.
Fast forward and he gets those slaves out of Egypt. Its no easy task and quite the entertaining story (found in Exodus 6-12).
And now he is in charge of all these former slaves in a desert with no home and a whole new way of living.
But the people suck. Like most people do. But in their defense the situation seems quite crazy if your one of the Israelites. They are in the desert (millions of them mind you) and hungry and thirsty and tired.
They have witnessed miracle after miracle from God through Moses. But still when your hungry and wandering in a dry, hot land. Anything can seem dire.
So God knows these people, they are His chosen people. He just chose them. I don't know why but He did. So He takes Moses up to a mountain and tells Moses how he and these people are to live.
You see these people had been slaves to the Egyptians for 430 years. They were not good at knowing how to live as free people. In fact like I said just before, they sucked at it.
He tells Moses laws they should follow and keep (really specific laws and ways of living, still many modern laws are formed from these) and gives Moses instructions on how to make this place (the Tabernacle) where God himself with dwell. He keeps Moses up on that mountain for 40 days giving clear instructions on how to build this place, whose to run it, how to run it, and how to deal with a, b, and c type situations.
So Moses is on this mountain for 40 days. Its says in scripture:
Then Moses climbed the mountain. The Cloud covered the mountain. The Glory of God settled over Mount Sinai. The Cloud covered it for six days. On the seventh day he called out of the Cloud to Moses. In the view of the Israelites below, the Glory of God looked like a raging fire at the top of the mountain.
Moses entered the middle of the Cloud and climbed the mountain. Moses was on the mountain forty days and forty nights. Exodus 24:15-18 The Message version.
So this is where I come in. No I wasn't on that mountain with God and Moses. But I get the cloud thing.
When I felt Jesus imploding on my life, it felt like a cloud surrounding me. Not just that June night. But that whole summer, and even now. I felt like Jesus had me surrounded, very much like when your in a plane and fly through a big cloud. You look out that tiny window and only see cloud and nothing else.
That June night Jesus opened my eyes just enough to see how wrong I was living. But He didn't just like lay it all out that night for me to become overwhelmed with. He kept and is keeping me close to him in this figurative 'cloud' showing me my ugly ways of life little by little. Changing and instructing me, little by little.
You see I think God knew Moses needed 40 days with Him on that mountain with the cloud. I see the cloud as almost a protective barrier between Moses and the world he lived in. He gave Moses time to understand everything He had planned for him and the people. He didn't just bring Moses up on that mountain one night and throw at him all he was to do with these people, how to build this, how to govern that. That would have been crazy. Poor Moses would have been left feeling so burdened down.
And I think that's what is happening in my life now. Jesus is still imploded all around me. I'm a walking controlled bomb. Watch out! Just kidding, no but really!
So one of the things God really wanted to make clear with Moses in that cloud of awesomeness was how the people were to act with God and how they were to atone for their suckiness or sinfulness if you want to get technical.
So Jesus wasn't born yet at this time. There was no savior or cross or resurrection to help.
Okay before I go on, this blog subject has plagued me the last two months or so. What I'm trying to do is break down why I follow Jesus.
and This verse sums up me right now with this blog and refinement journey.
From Paul, a bond servant of Jesus Christ (or a slave to Jesus) called to be an apostle or (messenger) set apart to spread the good news. Romans 1:1 amp version.
So I'm no apostle or even close to being like Paul (another awesome guy from the bible) but I feel bonded to Christ or a slave (a happy slave by the way) to share this next part. Here we go!
Okay so God needed blood for atonement from these sinful people. These people were descendents of Adam and Eve. You know those two! The two first people who totally dropped the ball and sinned again God and created this thing called sin in the world.
So going back to the beginning when Adam and Even sinned they had to be covered up. With clothes. Because before eating that forbidden fruit, they were naked and didn't know they were. But they ate that fruit and God killed animals and gave the sinful couple skins to wear as clothes. Blood was spilled to get the skins that covered Adam and Eve. It was the first sacrifice.
And fast forward to Moses and those people in the desert. Yeah you guessed it, there needed to be blood spilled.
In fact, the law requires that nearly everything be cleansed with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness. Hebrews 9:22 NIV version
So when Moses was with God on that mountain all those days and nights, God really gave Moses every last detail of how He wanted the tabernacle to be built (again the place where they would be sacrificing, worshiping, and where God dwelled)and all the details on what animal to kill, where to put the blood, how much, and the times of year they were to 'atone' for their prior sins.
The tabernacle had many elements to it, but my favorite was the curtain. There was the spot in that great building that had the Holy Place and The Most Holy Place. These places were each unique. God made sure Moses knew how to deal with these places when he was instructing him on that mountain.
The Holy Place was where the priest would enter and communicate with God daily.
The Most Holy Place was where God himself was. The priest only entered that place once a year with the blood for the sacrifices of the peoples sins.
(noted: God is omnipresent, He's everywhere, But God had a bigger picture in mind when he made that extra holy place, so just go with it)
So for many, many years and generations this is how it was done. There would be the priest, the blood, that holy and most holy room. Lots of animals slaughtered, lots of blood spilled.
So that bigger picture thing. Yeah God loves bigger picture references. They are laced throughout the entire old and new testament. The nucleus of that bigger picture is...
You see God didn't look down at the people and see how they were failing miserably, even with all those blood sacrifices and say "hey I should have just thought of something else this isn't working.... so let me send my son". He didn't throw Jesus down on this earth out of desperation. It was all planned from the beginning.
The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.
He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.
For God was pleased to have his fullness dwell with him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his BLOOD, shed on the cross.
Colossians 1:15-20 NIV version (verses above aren't complete 15-20, just snip its)
So Jesus comes in the picture. Ah finally, take a breath. ahhhh.
I won't make you read my short version of Jesus' life on earth. I didn't do the best job of making Moses life short for this blog so I'm just going to get to the good stuff...
Proof! Blood! Final sacrifice!
So when Jesus died on the cross that curtain I told you about a few paragraphs up, well that thing ripped down the middle the second he died.
And when Jesus had cried out again in a loud voice, he gave up his spirit. At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. Matthew 27:50-51 NIV version
That curtain separated The Holy Place from The Most Holy Place. Seeing it?
The bigger picture?
Jesus is the curtain! God while telling Moses where to put that big curtain, knew that is was a picture of his son!
I love a good bigger picture. It gives me all the right feels.
So that curtain ripping showed that Jesus was the ultimate sacrifice. There was no need for those holy rooms or animals blood. The ultimate sacrifice had been made.
He did not enter by means of the blood of goats and calves; but he entered the Most Holy Place once for all by his own blood, thus obtaining eternal redemption. Hebrews 9:12 NIV version
For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your ancestors, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect. 1 Peter 1:18-19 NIV version
So Jesus took care of it once and for all. What a relief to not have to slaughter a lamb or goat. We have Jesus and all we have to do is believe who He says He is.
Like I said before, I was a christian before Christ imploded around me this summer. I believed and loved Jesus. But I never really followed Him. Following Jesus is not just believing he died for me and rose again. That's just the tip of the iceberg. Jesus wants us to become holy. We are not to be like the world. Which is sinful and run by His enemy. In my own personal growth the last 5 months, Jesus has made drastic cuts from my life. He got to the nitty gritty stuff, the sexual stuff, the shows, the movies, things that were really defining who I was and said 'NO, your not going to live like this anymore'. He changed my desires and has given me strength to stop my old sinful habits.
If I didn't stay in the word (the Bible), the whole refinement process wouldn't be a process. I would have given up and been influenced by the world once again. There have been many times throughout this process where I want to give up, watch that movie, read that book that has lots of sex in it. But Jesus is still imploded all around me. He keeps showing me ways to be like Him, and in turn I have these amazing blessings. Its not just the blessings, but He seems to be killing my past desires and giving me new gifts and hopes! So Following Jesus is so much better of a payoff than going back to my old ways.
That precious, precious blood has saved me from myself and this world.
[Christ, the Messiah] is therefore the Negotiator and Mediator of an [entirely] new agreement (testament, covenant), so that those who are called and offered it may receive the fulfillment of the promised everlasting inheritance—since a death has taken place which rescues and delivers and redeems them from the transgressions committed under the [old] first agreement. Hebrews 9:15 Amp version
I don't know if this blog will help people or not. I just felt the covenant of Jesus Christ was worth sharing. I love the bigger picture of it all. In Exodus God sets up the tabernacle. He finishes it with Jesus' death and resurrection.
My most favorite verses that really I believe put the nail in the coffin is...
Since all have sinned and are falling short of the honor and glory [a]which God bestows and receives.
[All] are justified and made upright and in right standing with God, freely and gratuitously by His grace (His unmerited favor and mercy), through the redemption which is [provided] in Christ Jesus,
Whom God put forward, before the eyes of all, as a mercy seat and propitiation by His blood [the cleansing and life-giving sacrifice of atonement and reconciliation, to be received] through faith. This was to show God’s righteousness, because in His divine forbearance He had passed over and ignored former sins without punishment. Romans 3:23-26 Amp Version
If you don't understand why I gave up my old sexual sinful ways its because of Christ. I think that precious blood is worthy of my complete self.
It all started back on June 25th this year and this verse is the reason for the process.
Then I saw a Lamb, looking as if it had been slain, standing in the center of the throne. Revelations 5:6a NIV version
Revelations chapter 5 changed my life. A cloud of Jesus imploded on me after reading that chapter. A chapter and boom! I'm surrounded by the Lamb who was slain!
You are worthy to take the scroll (my life) and to open the seals (change me), and with your blood you purchased me for God. Revelations 5:9a NIV version
He's worth it. I'm proof of that. I feel Christ all around me and hope everyone else can feel this closeness too!
I'll finish it with John the Baptist words about Christ,
The next day he (John the Baptist) saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! John 1:29 NIV version
Because of that precious blood from Christ himself, because of Christ thats why!