Food For Thought
Therefore, let anyone who thinks he is standing be careful not to fall!
I Corinthians 10:12

      Unless otherwise indicated, the collection of scriptures found in Food for Thought are quoted from the Tanakh, The Holy Scriptures, (The Old Testament) pub. by, the Jewish Publication Society, New York, 1988; and the Jewish New Testament, translated by David H. Stern, pub. by Jewish New Testament Publications, Clarksville, MD, 1994.

~ Meditations ~
~ From the Word of God ~
(Meditations are meant to be
pondered carefully.)


~ Serving God ~

      Yeshua said: "If someone is serving me, let him follow me... My father will honor anyone who serves me."
(John 12:26)

      But: "You have spoken hard words against Me--said the LORD. But you ask, ‘What have we been saying among ourselves against You?’ You have said, ‘It is useless to serve God. What have we gained by keeping His charge and walking in abject awe of the LORD of Hosts? And so, we account the arrogant happy: they have in-deed done evil and endured; they have indeed dared God and escaped.’ In this vein have those who revere the LORD been talking to one another. The LORD has heard and noted it, and a scroll of remembrance has been written at His behest concerning those who revere the LORD and esteem His name. And on the day that I am preparing, said the LORD of Hosts, they shall be My treasured possession; I will be tender toward them as a man is tender toward a son who ministers to him. And you shall come to see the difference between the righteous and the wicked, between him who has served the LORD and him who has not served Him."
(Malachi 3:13-18)

"As a father has compassion for his children,
so the LORD has compassion or those who fear Him.
For He knows how we are formed;
He is mindful that we are dust."

"Man, his days are like those of grass;
he blooms like a flower of the field,
a wind passes by and it is no more,
its own place no longer knows it.

"But the LORD’s steadfast love is for all eternity
toward those who fear Him.
and His beneficence is for the children’s children
of those who keep His covenant
and remember to observe His precepts."
(Psalms 103:13-18)

~ How Do We Serve God? ~

      Now: "The religious observance that God the Father considers pure and faultless is this: to care for orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being contaminated by the world.
      "Anyone who thinks he is religiously observant but does not control his tongue is deceiving himself, and his observance counts for nothing
      "For whoever hears the Word but doesn’t do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror, who looks at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But if a person looks closely into the perfect Torah, which gives freedom, and continues, becoming not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work it requires, then he will be blessed in what he does."
(James 1:27,26,23-25)

      So: "What is causing all the quarrels and fights among you? Isn’t it your desires baffling inside you? For where there are jealousy and selfish ambition, there will be disharmony and every foul practice You desire things and don’t have them You kill. and you are jealous, and you still can’t get them. So you fight and quarrel. The reason you don’t have is that you don’t pray! Or you pray and don’t receive, because you pray with the wrong motive, that of wanting to indulge your own desires...."
(James 4:1; 3:16; 4:2-3)

      "Brothers, stop speaking against each other? Whoever speaks against a brother or judges a brother is speaking against Torah and judging Torah. And it you judge Torah, you are not a doer of what Torah says, but a judge. There is but one Giver of Torah; he is also the Judge, with the power to deliver and to destroy. Who do you think you are, judging your fellow human being?

      "Don’t grumble against one an-other, brothers, so that you won’t come under condemnation -- look! the Judge is standing at the door! ... So, brothers, be patient until the Lord returns. See how the farmer waits for the precious ‘fruit of the earth’ -- he is patient over it until it receives the fall and spring rains. You too, be patient; keep up your courage; for the Lord’s return is near"
(James 4:11-12a; 5:9,7-8)

"Fear the Lord, my son, and the king,
And do not mix with dissenters,
For disaster comes from them suddenly;
The doom both decree who can foreknow?"
(Proverbs 24:21-22)

"Do not envy sinners in your heart,
But only God-fearing men, at all times,
For then you will have a future,
And your hope will never fail."
(Proverbs 24:23:17)

      "Pay attention! says Yeshua, ‘I am coming soon, and my rewards are with me to give to each person according to what he has done.’"
(Rev. 22:12)

~ Who Is the Faithful ~
~ And Sensible Servant? ~

      "Who is the faithful and sensible servant whose master puts him in charge of the household staff, to give them their food at the proper time? It will go well with that servant if he is found doing his job when his master comes. Yes, I tell you that he will put him in charge of all he owns. But if that servant is wicked and says to himself, ‘My master is taking his time;’ and he starts beating up his fellow servants and spends his time eating and drinking with drunkards; then his master will come on a day the servant does not expect, at a time he doesn’t know; and he will cut him in two and put him with the hypocrites, where people will wail and grind their teeth!"
(Matt. 24:45-51)

~ What Will ~
~ The Day of Judgment ~
~ Be Like? ~

      "When the Son of Man comes in his glory, accompanied by all the angels, he will sit on his glorious throne. All the nations will be assembled before him, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates sheep from goats. The ‘sheep’ he will place at his right hand and the ‘goats’ at his left.
      "Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you whom my Father has blessed, take your inheritance. the Kingdom prepared for you from the founding of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you made me your guest, I needed clothes and you provided them, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.’ Then the people who have done what God wants will reply, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and make you our guest, or needing clothes and provide them? When did we see you sick or in prison, and visit you?’ The King will say to them, ‘Yes! I tell you that whenever you did these things for one of the least important of these brothers of mine, you did them for me!’
      "Then he will also speak to those on his left, saying, ‘Get away from me, you who are cursed! Go off into the fire prepared for the Adversary and his angels! For I was hungry and you gave me no food, thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, a stranger and you did not welcome me, needing clothes and you did not give them to me, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.’ Then they too will reply, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry, thirsty, a stranger, needing clothes, sick or in prison, and not take care of you?’ And he will answer them, ‘Yes! I tell you that whenever you refused to do it for the least important of these people, you refused to do it for me!’ They will go off to eternal punishment, but those who have done what God wants will go to eternal life."
(Matt. 25:31-46)

~ God Is Faithful ~

"One thing God has spoken;
      two things have I heard:
      that might belongs to God,
            and faithfulness is Yours,
            O Lord (YHVH),
      to reward each man according
            to his deeds."
(Psalms 62:12)

      "Let what you heard from the beginning remain in you. If what you heard from the beginning remains in you, you will also remain in union with both the Son and the Father. And this is what he has promised us: eternal life."
(I John 2:24)

      "So then, brothers, we don’t owe a thing to our old nature that would require us to live according to our old nature. For if you live according to your old nature, you will certainly die; but if, by the spirit, you keep puffing to death the practices of the body, you will live.
      Now: "All who are led by God’s Spirit are God’s sons. For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to bring you back again into fear; on the contrary, you received the Spirit, who makes us sons and by whose power we cry out, ‘Abba!’ (that is, ‘Dear Father!’). The Spirit himself bears witness with our own spirits that we are children of God; and if we are children, then we are also heirs, heirs of God and joint-heirs with the Messiah - provided we are suffering with him in order also to be glorified with him."
(Rom. 8:12-17)

      "As for you, the Messianic anointing you received from the Father remains in you, so that you have no need for anyone to teach you. On the contrary, as his Messianic anointing continues to teach you about all things, and is true, not a counterfeit, so, just as he taught you, remain united with him... so that when he appears, we may have confidence and not shrink back from him in shame at his coming. If you know that he is righteous, you should also know that he is the Father of everyone who does what is right.
      "See what love the Father has lavished on us in letting us be called God’s children! For that is what we are. The reason the world does not know us is that it has not known him. Dear friends, we are God’s children now; and it has not yet been made clear what we will become. We do know that when he appears, we will be like him: because we will see him as he really is.
      "And everyone who has this hope in him continues purifying himself, since God is pure. Everyone who keeps sinning is violating Torah -- indeed, sin is violation of Torah. You know that he appeared in order to take away sins, and that there is no sin in him. So no one who remains united with him continues sinning; everyone who does continue sinning has neither seen him nor known him.

      "Children, don’t let anyone deceive you -- it is the person that keeps on doing what is right who is righteous, just as God is righteous. The person who keeps on sinning is from the Adversary, because from the very beginning the Adversary has kept on sinning. No one who has God as his Father keeps on sinning. because the seed planted by God remains in him That is. he cannot continue sinning. because he has God as his Father. Here is how one can distinguish clearly between God’s children and those of the Adversary: everyone who does not continue doing what is right is not from God.
      "Likewise, anyone who fails to keep loving his brother is not from God. For this is the message which you have heard from the beginning: that we should love each other and not be like Kayin, (Cain) who was from the Evil One and murdered his own brother. Why did he murder him? Because his own actions were evil, and his brother’s were righteous. Don’t be amazed, brothers, if the world hates you. We, for our part, know that we have passed from death to life because we keep loving the brothers. The person who fails to keep on loving is still under the power of death. Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life in him.
      "The way that we have come to know love is through his having laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers! If someone has worldly possessions and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how can he be loving God? Children, let us not love with words and talk, but with actions and in reality!
      "Here is how we will know that we are from the truth and will set our hearts at rest in his presence: if our hearts know something against us. God is greater that our hearts. and he knows everything. Dear friends, if our hearts know nothing against us, we have confidence in approaching God: then whatever we ask for, we receive from him: because we are obeying his commands and doing the things that please him."
      And: "This is his command: that we are to trust in the person and power of his Son Yeshua the Messiah and to keep loving one another, just as he commanded us."
(I John 2:27-3:23)

~ Do We Have God’s Spirit? ~

      "Those who obey his commands remain united with him and he with them."
      And: "Here is how we know that he remains united with us: by the Spirit whom he gave us. Dear friends, don’t trust every spirit. On the contrary, test the spirits to see whether they are from God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world. Here is how you recognize the Spirit of God: every spirit which acknowledges that Yeshua the Messiah came as a human being is from God, and every spirit which does not acknowledge Yeshua is not from God -- in fact, this is the spirit of the Anti-Messiah. ...
      But: "You children, are from God and have overcome the false prophets. because he who is in you is greater than he who is in the world. They are from the world; therefore, they speak from the world’s viewpoint; and the world listens to them. We are from God. Whoever knows God listens to us; whoever is not from God doesn’t listen to us. This is how we distinguish the Spirit of truth from the spirit of error.
      "Beloved friends, let us love one another; because love is from God; and everyone who loves has God as his Father and knows God. Those who do not love, do not know God; because God is love. Here is how God showed his love among us: God sent his only Son into the world so that through him we might have life."

      And: "Here is what love is: not that we have loved God. but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the kapparah (atonement, propitiation) for our sins."
(I John. 3:24-4:10)

      "Beloved friends, if this is how God loved us, we likewise ought to love one another.... if we love one another, God remains united with us, and our love for him has been brought to its goal in us. Here is how we know that we remain united with him and he with us: he has given to us from his own Spirit. Moreover, we have seen and we testify that the Father has sent his Son as Deliverer of the world. If someone acknowledges that Yeshua is the Son of God, God remains united with him, and he with God. Also we have come to know and trust the love that God has for us. God is love: and those who remain in this love remain united with God, and God remains united with them."
(I John. 4:11-16)

      "Here is how love has been brought to maturity with us: as the Messiah is, so are we in the world. This gives us confidence for the day of Judgment. There is no fear in love. On the contrary, love that has achieved its goal gets rid of fear, because fear has to do with punishment: the person who keeps fearing has not been brought to maturity in regard to love.
      "We ourselves love now because he loved us first. If anyone says, ‘I love God,’ and hates his brother: he is a liar. For if a person does not love his brother; whom he has seen, then he cannot love God, whom he has not seen. Yes, this is the command we have from him: whoever loves God must love his brother too.
(I John. 4:17-21)

~ Is God Our Father? ~

      "Everyone who believes that Yeshua is the Messiah has God as his father: and everyone who loves a father loves his offspring too. Here is how we know that we love God’s children: when we love God, we also do what he commands. For loving God means obeying his commands. Moreover, his commands are not burdensome, be-cause everything which has God as its Father overcomes the world. And this is what victoriously overcomes the world: our trust."
(I John 5:14)

      "And the Spirit bears witness, be-cause the Spirit is the truth... Those who keep trusting in the Son of God have this witness in them. Those who do not keep trusting God have made him out to be a liar, because they have not trusted in the witness which God has given about his Son. And this is the witness: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. Those who have the Son have the life: those who do not have the son of God do not have the life. I have written you these things so that you may know that you have eternal life -- you who keep trusting in the person and power of the Son of God."
(I John. 5:6b,10-13)

      "And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us discernment, so that we may know who is genuine: moreover, we are united with the One who is genuine, united with His Son Yeshua the Messiah. He is the genuine God and eternal life."
(I John 5:20)

      And: ", who at one time were separated from God and had a hostile attitude towards him because of your wicked deeds, he has now reconciled in the Son’s physical body through his death; in order to present you holy and without defect or reproach before himself -- provided, of course, that you continue in your trusting, grounded and steady, and don’t let yourselves be moved away from the hope offered in the good News you heard.
      "This is the Good News that has been proclaimed in all creation under heaven.., the secret hidden for generations, for ages, but now made clear to the people he has set apart for himself. To them God wanted to make known how great among the Gentiles is the glorious richness of this secret. And the secret is this: the Messiah is united with you people! In that rests your hope of glory!"
(Col. 1:21-23,26-27)

      "Therefore, just as you received the Messiah Yeshua as Lord, keep living your life united with him. Remain deeply rooted in him: continue being built up in him and confirmed in your trust, the way you were taught, so that you overflow in thanksgiving.
      "Watch out, so that no one will take you captive by means of philosophy and empty deceit, following human tradition which accords with the elemental spirits of the world but does not accord with the Messiah. For in him, bodily, lives the fullness of all that God is. And it is union with him that you have been made full -- he is the head of every rule and authority."
(Col. 2:6-10)

~ Have We Been Circumcised? ~

      Yes: "... it was in union with him that you were circumcised with a circumcision not done by human hands, but accomplished by stripping away the old nature’s control over the body. In this circumcision done by the Messiah, you were buried along with him by being immersed; and in union with him, you were also raised up along with him by God’s faithfulness that worked when he raised Yeshua from the dead. You were dead because of your sins, that is, because of your ‘foreskin:’, your old nature. But God made you alive along with the Messiah by forgiving you all your sins."
(Col 2:11-13)

      "Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with feelings of compassion and with kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with one another; if anyone has a complaint against some-one else, forgive him. Indeed, just as the Lord has forgiven you, so you must forgive."
      Now: "...cloth yourselves with love, which binds everything together perfectly; and let the shalom (peace) which comes from the Messiah be your heart’s decision-maker, for this is why you were called to be part of a single Body. ..."
      And: "Whatever work you do, put yourself into it, as those who are serving not merely other people, but the Lord. Remember that as your reward, you will receive the inheritance from the Lord."
(Col. 3:12-15,23-24)

"Praise the LORD:
      call on His name;
      proclaim His deeds among the
Remember the wonders He has done,
      His portents and the judgments
      He has pronounced. ..."
(Psalms 105:1,5)

      "‘Praise the LORD, for He is good; His steadfast love is eternal!”’"
(Psalms 107:1)

      Praise the LORD, and Be Blessed!