I admit that much of today’s reading felt like a haze. But through that haze a pattern began to emerge. A name.
The Sadducees were “greatly annoyed because they were teaching the people and proclaiming in Jesus the resurrection from the dead.” Acts 4:2
“let it be known to all of you and all the people of Israel that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead by him this man is standing before you well.” Acts 4:10
“This Jesus is the stone that was rejected by you, the builders, which has become the cornerstone.” Acts 4:11
“And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.” Acts 4:12
“But in order that it may spread no farther among the people, let us warn them to speak no more to anyone in this name.” Acts 4:17
I could go on and on, but just by this short passage it is evident that there is tremendous power in the name of Jesus of Nazareth! Power that filled the Sadducees with jealous fear and the disciples with power and boldness through His Holy Spirit. There is power in the name of Jesus because it speaks of the person of Jesus, in whom all power resides. When we have Jesus, we have everything we need. He is the cornerstone the builders rejected. Will you reject him today? Will I? I almost did. But “if this plan or this undertaking is of man, it will fail; but if it is of God, nothing will be able to overthrow it.” Acts 5:38-39
As unfaithful as I have already fully proven myself to be, God still won’t let me fail. You know why? Because of you. Because He cares about you. And it’s my job to remind (myself and) you every day how much He loves you. He loves you enough to send you power and strength through a simple name – JESUS! A name that saves to the fullest and most extreme extent. A name above all names. A name that means everything to me because He gave everything for me while I was yet a sinner. Although I sinned and fell oh so short of the glory of God, He justified me by His grace as a gift through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus whom God put forward as a propitiation for my sins and yours! (Romans 3:23-25)
Hallelujah! We are justified through Grace!
-Woman of God who isn’t a______ to do what needs to be done.
After the Video:
-God turned the camera off; Tamar’s plans for this video were different than His. What is something in your life where your plans ended up being different than God’s? And how did they turn out in the end?
-At what point did Tamar’s Mask of Perfection come off? What do you think caused it to come off and allow us to see what was underneath? What had she been using to mask her true emotions?
-What kinds of things do you use to mask how you are really feeling at any given moment in time? Is a smile often your mask?
Word of the Day: “I find no guilt in Him,” John 18: 38, 4 & 19:6
Pilate was completely stuck between a rock and a hard place! Here he proclaims to the Jews three times, “I find no guilt in Him.” It’s so incredibly obvious that Pilate believes that this bloody mass of a man before him really is someone of significance. And then when he hears that Jesus has “made Himself the Son of God” (John 19:7), Pilate suddenly realizes the true seriousness of his own situation. The Jews are forcing him to kill the Son of God! His wife even had a dream about Jesus and told him to “Have nothing to do with that righteous man, for I have suffered much because of Him today in a dream” (Matthew 27:19). Pilate tried, he really did, but it had to be done. And thank God it was done!
Can you imagine the horror of still having to slaughter animals to atone for sin… only to realize their blood doesn’t last, doesn’t cover, doesn’t truly atone; it only satisfies briefly in order to maintain civility. Ahhhh… but the blood of Jesus, now that’s an altogether different story! The blood of Jesus fully satisfies for eternity the penalty that is due to us! His blood does what the blood of bulls and goats and sheep never could. While their blood only covered up the sin, masking it briefly only for it to come back up again like a stain in the carpet. The blood of Jesus erases our sin completely, never to return again! On the cross, Jesus called all our sins (through all the ages) down upon Himself. Like Luke Skywalker calls his light saber or Thor calls his hammer, Jesus calls the entirety of our sin to Himself to be crucified on the cross with Him. But that’s not the end of the story. Hallelujah there’s more.
When a man commits a crime he goes to prison and stays there for a certain amount of time to “pay” for that particular crime. When his time is up his crime has been atoned for and he walks out of prison a free man. Oh, this is good! Jesus took every crime of humanity upon Himself, from anger to murder, and with Him each of them died on the cross; that was the judgment. Then He went to the prison of death where He stayed until every crime was fully paid for. Then He rose from the dead and emerged from the tomb of death to walk again among the living, proving that our sins have been fully paid for through HIS death!
So as many of you know, and some of you don’t, one Sunday afternoon (March 11th 2012 to be exact) I was attempting to nap after church and just as I was beginning to fully relax into my bed the Holy Spirit spoke life-changing words into my spirit: “Write through the Bible in a year”. I literally sprang from my bed and went straight to my computer to update my blog (www.tamarknochel.com). I’ll admit, there have been times when this challenge has been…well… a challenge! But the rewards that I have reaped have far outweighed the cost. That afternoon as I tapped away on the keys to my computer, updating my “followers” of the news, I had no idea the true changes that God had in store for me within this challenge. His Holy Spirit truly is the best teacher any of us could ever have, and asking Him to come and teach us as individual children of God is the best choice we could ever make in this life after choosing Jesus as our Lord and Savior.
I am praying that this simple little Bible Study will help you grow and learn about the love of God through Christ Jesus. It has been through reading the Word of God daily and writing about it that I have been able to see God’s hand at work in my life like never before. I pray that this journal does the same for you!
Here’s how it works…
Every day we hold our Bibles to our chest (like they’re Jesus Himself greeting us before sitting down with us to chat) as we pray:
“Come Holy Spirit, fill me with Your fire so that I may be more like You. Father Open my eyes so that I may see You clearly. Open my ears so that I may hear You soundly. Open my mind so that I may know You more. Open my heart so that I may love You more. Open my mouth so that You may fill it with good things. Open my hands so that I may give generously and receive humbly. Come Holy Spirit, fill me with Your fire so that I may be more like You. Help me Jesus – I trust You.” (Click here for a printable card.)
While praying this prayer picture the Holy Spirit coming and opening these things up like French doors to let in a spring breeze – you may even feel the breeze enter your heart as you pray! The Holy Spirit has taught me this prayer over the years and it is so near and dear to my heart as EVERY time that I pray it I can feel my heart burning within me in acknowledgement to His fiery presence.
Next we open our Bibles to that day’s reading and read the entire selection. Now, I know that some of you may have trouble doing this, BUT, I am giving you permission to… *gasp*… write in your Bible. Yes, really. It is a book with pages of paper and words written in ink just like any other textbook. The pages and the ink are not holy or sacred, THE WORDS themselves are. We are doing this as a study of His words so act like a student. Highlight those pages, mark them up with your own ink, dog-ear the pages and fill them with bookmarks and sticky notes! Make this book your own; special and unique just like you. By the time you’re done with this study in about a year, (or more if you’re like me) when you flip through these pages a rainbow of color and life will greet your eyes and make you smile, it’s a very beautiful thing! If you would like a new Bible to mark up for less than $5 click here! Or email me and I’ll do what I can to get you one for free, you may just have to wait a bit longer for it.
After reading for the day go back over the verses you highlighted, which one(s) speak to you the most? That verse is your very own “Word of the Day” straight from God Himself just for you. Write it down (we have created a companion journal just for this purpose if you would like one click here). As you are writing picture yourself writing with a supernatural pen that writes the words straight onto your heart. Where nothing can erase them or blot them out because God’s words are alive and as powerful as a double-edged sword (Hebrews 4:12) and they never return to Him void, they always accomplish the purpose for which He sent them out. (Isaiah 55:11)
Lastly there are the notes. I will share mine here and I encourage you to do your own; write down any insights that you have gained from your reading, anything that really struck you or changed you. I encourage you to write down your prayers and thoughts toward the LORD. I have been amazed at the things that God has told me through my own writing and I pray for the revelations that He will show you through your writing! The main purpose of me being here in this place is to help others build a RELATIONSHIP with the Almighty, not just a religion. This blog is a place for us to meet and fellowship with one another and I encourage you to leave comments, talk to one another, ask questions, interact with each other and me but most of all HIM. He is here, with us in this place, let us rejoice and be glad in it!!!
In Revelation 12:10-11 tells us that the Accuser is defeated by the blood of the Lamb AND the word of OUR testimony! I want this to be a place where the Enemy can not tread because it is so filled with our testimonies of how the Lamb of God has been working in our everyday lives!!! Let’s fill this place up with so many testimonies of how Jesus conquered the Enemy in our lives that EVERYONE will come just to see what all the fuss is about. This blog isn’t about me, and it’s not about you, it’s about HIM. So lets do that shall we? But I can’t do it alone, I need your help, your input, your participation. Even if you’re just reading what I write and commenting, that’s great. But the REAL power will come from reading His word for yourselves and allowing His voice to come to the forefront of your mind.
Happy Reading & Writing! Here’s the Intro video to the series, enjoy! (There is an outline below the video if you would like to use one.) Please please please let me know if the video doesn’t work for you, this YouTube thing is still very new for me!!!
This is the outline for the video if you’d like to use it to follow along. You can also click here for a printable version if you would prefer.
Masks of Perfection Introduction Video Guide
-This Bible Study is all about getting into the W______ of God daily, letting it sink into your l______ and shut out all the outside v______ to focus on H____.
-The benefit is in taking off the M______ of P______ and allowing people to see your:
how you’re f______
w______ you really are.
-We as Christians, women, mothers, friends, wives and as daughters of Christ need to allow ourselves to s______ so that the p______ around us can see the effects that they have on us.
–We are justified! We are j______ as if I’d n______ s______ . We are justified!
-The Mask of Perfection says, “I d______ s______, I’m perfect!” Taking that mask off allows others to see that we’re h______ and gives us something to t______ about.
-The Bible is the W______ of the Word .
-The Water of the Word washes away the dirt and grime that builds up while we’re l______ l______ and being human.
-As they build up in our hearts, the Words of God become part of w______ we are!
-When we get married to Christ we become o___ f______!
-The Spirit of God lives in m__!
-I am a p______ child of God.
-2 Corinthians 12:9-10 “My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
-We need to look at God and say to Him, “You are e______ for me.”
-I don’t have to be p______ because HE IS!
After the video:
(Feel free to answer these questions in the comment section below!!!! 😀