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  • 4 hours ago
    Posted by Dion Todd
    As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desir...
  • Thu at 3:01 AM
    Posted by Dion Todd
    He entered into one of the boats, which was Simon's, and asked him to put out a little from the land. He sat down and taught the multitudes from the boat. When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, 'Put out into the deep, and let down your nets for a catch.' Simon answered him, 'Master, we wor...
  • Wed at 3:01 AM
    Posted by Dion Todd
    He told them this parable. 'Which of you men, if you had one hundred sheep, and lost one of them, wouldn't leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness, and go after the one that was lost, until he found it?' Luke 15:3 WEBWhen I first got serious about serving the Lord Jesus, I was a musician and played ...
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The Placebo Replacement

  • Then I proclaimed a fast there, at the river Ahava, that we might humble ourselves before our God, to seek of him a straight way for us, and for our little ones, and for all our substance. For I was ashamed to ask of the king a band of soldiers and horsemen to help us against the enemy in the way, because we had spoken to the king, saying, The hand of our God is on all those who seek him, for good; but his power and his wrath is against all those who forsake him. So we fasted and begged our God for this: and he was entreated of us. Ezra 8:21 WEB

    Ezra and Nehemiah lived as exiles during a dark time in the history of Israel. Their fathers had forsaken the living God and replaced Him with something else, something more passive, a placebo god. It was a strange situation because even though they had originally built the altars and temples for God, and the priests continued their work just as usual, God was no longer there. A placebo is a harmless pill designed to merely calm, or please someone, and it has no therapeutic effect. It's Latin origin literally means 'I shall please.'

    The priests continued their daily offerings, even though God was sick of them (Isaiah 1:14, Jeremiah 6:20, 7:21, Hosea 4:13). He had told them: 'Listen to My voice and I will be your God, and you shall be My people, and walk in the way that I command you' (Jeremiah 7:23), but they had turned that commandment into rote tradition. Keeping a long list of rules with no relationship at all, they were spiritually deaf and it became the blind leading the blind. Oddly enough, church life continues long after God has left the building.

    God sent Jeremiah to warn them and tell them the truth, but instead of listening, they wanted to kill him. 'The priests and the prophets and all the people heard Jeremiah speaking these words in the house of Yahweh. It happened, when Jeremiah had made an end of speaking all that Yahweh had commanded him to speak to all the people, that the priests and the prophets and all the people laid hold on him, saying, 'You shall surely die'' (Jeremiah 26:7).

    God's word was no longer welcome in His own house and they beat His prophets and put them in jail (Jeremiah 20:2). He sent many messengers to try and correct them, but they beat them, stoned them and refused to believe that God had sent them (1Kings 13:1). Amos was a shepherd and a farmer, but God gave him a message for Israel and sent him to them to try and wake His people up. God's priests were deaf and continuing on in their daily drudgery, stubbornly rejecting His correction, and leading the people into worshiping a placebo god. The priest told God's prophet to get out, and stay out.

    'Amaziah also said to Amos, 'You seer, go, flee away into the land of Judah, and there eat bread, and prophesy there: but don't prophesy again any more at Bethel; for it is the king's sanctuary, and it is a royal house!' Then Amos answered Amaziah: 'I was no prophet, neither was I a prophet's son; but I was a herdsman, and a farmer of sycamore trees; and Yahweh took me from following the flock, and Yahweh said to me, 'Go, prophesy to my people Israel.' Now therefore listen to the word of Yahweh' (Amos 7:12).

    Eventually, God had enough of this and stirred up Assyria to carry off Israel, and Babylon to carry off Judah. They burned the cities, destroyed the temples, and carried the people away into exile. God gave it a reboot and started over, much like the flood during Noah's day.

    Jeremiah prophesied that after seventy years in exile, that God would visit them and bring them back (Jeremiah 29:10). When the seventy years were up, Daniel began praying, fasting and reminding God of His word to them (Daniel 9:2). Isaiah had prophesied 150 years before Cyrus became king, that he would be the one to rebuild the Lord's temple (Isaiah 44:28). God called King Cyrus by name 150 years before he came on the scene.

    This is the time when Ezra and Nehemiah lived. The seventy years in exile were completed and King Cyrus, a pagan king used by God, gave an order to rebuild the temple of God at Jerusalem (Ezra 1:1) and the remnants of the Jewish people began returning home after spending seventy years in exile.

    Ezra had gotten caught in his own words while speaking to King Cyrus. He had told the king how powerful God was and that He was good to those that sought Him, but His power and wrath is against those who forsake Him. The roads were very dangerous to travel during that time, and Ezra was now ashamed to ask the king for soldiers to protect them after his speech. So he proclaimed a corporate fast and they humbled themselves before God. They fasted and begged for God's favor, and He gave them His protection (Ezra 8:23).

    God always has a redemption plan before the judgment comes. When the world was destroyed by a flood in Noah's time, God kept a remnant alive to rebuild it. When Israel was destroyed and taken into exile, God brought a remnant back safely to rebuild. Isaiah prophesying of Cyrus 150 years before, shows that God was already working on a way to restore a proper relationship with His people, before the fall began.

    God always makes a way for the fallen to return to His family, not as an outcast, but a fully accepted, loved person of status just as the prodigal son returned home to a feast (Luke 15:22). You are a true son or daughter of the Most High God, who has nothing to be ashamed of. No matter what you have done in your life, God wants you back with Him.

    He was working out the way for you to return, before you ever left. He already set the time for you to go free, before you were taken captive. He knows you by name and even the hairs of your head are numbered (Luke 12:7). For God so loved the world, that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life (John 3:16).

    Prayer: Heavenly Father, I ask for and accept Your forgiveness for my sins. Help me return to You in every area of my life. Consume me with Your love Lord and let me see through Your eyes today, in the name of Jesus Christ I pray.

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23 comments
  • 3
Stacie Chambers
Stacie Chambers

Sooooo encouraging! Bless the Name of the Lord...Who plans our redemption...our way of escape...before we even know we need it. Glory to God!!!!!!!!!

April 5, 2017
  • 2
David and Dianna Wyles
David and Dianna Wyles Prayer: Heavenly Father, I ask for and accept Your forgiveness for my sins. Help me return to You in every area of my life. Consume me with Your love Lord and let me see through Your eyes today, in the name of Jesus Christ I pray. Amen <3 Thank you  
April 5, 2017
  • 3
Sharon Leonard
Sharon Leonard

This is one of the best writings. You have a gift of being able to get Gods point across.

April 5, 2017
  • 2
Rachael Burke
Rachael Burke

Amen

April 5, 2017
  • 2
Yvette York
Yvette York

Amen 

April 5, 2017
  • 2
Schalk  de Beer
Schalk de Beer

Amen Lord. 

April 5, 2017
  • 2
Kay Collinsworth
Kay Collinsworth

Amen

April 5, 2017
  • 2
Marisa Jackson
Marisa Jackson

Amen!!

April 5, 2017
  • 2
Michelle  Muff
Michelle Muff

You are a true daughter and son of the living God and no matter what you have done, God wants you back!!  You have nothing to be be ashamed of.  In Christ is our redemption!!!amen amen men!!

April 5, 2017
  • 1
Lynn Brown
Lynn Brown

Thank you Lord for forgiving me and redeeming me. Help me to forgive myself and others as You forgive.  Let me see through Your eyes. Great message today. Amen!

April 5, 2017
  • 1
Joseph Adams, Jr.
Joseph Adams, Jr.

"Let the redeemed of the Lord, say so."

April 5, 2017
  • 1
Carol Pady
Carol Pady

Amen!

April 5, 2017
  • 1
Twila Stierwalt
Twila Stierwalt

What a faithful God we serve, I want to trust Him with my life, after all He is the One who created me!

April 5, 2017
  • 1
Fraser Keys
Fraser Keys

Amen!  Help me Lord. to always be faithful knowing you are wth me no matter the circumstance!i

April 5, 2017
  • 1
Kathy Banfield
Kathy Banfield

Thanks for reminding me that I will always be welcome in God's family!

April 5, 2017
  • 1
Deng Tembreza
Deng Tembreza

After all I have done. our LORD GOD ALMIGHTY has d welcome me back with open arms.  I praise and Thank you LORD GOD for setting me free, and making me new again. In the name of our LORDS JESUS CHRIST this I pray and thank you.  Amen

April 5, 2017
  • 1
Gail Sellu
Gail Sellu

In Jesus' name, Amen 

April 5, 2017
  • 1
Julie Schneider
Julie Schneider

Wow, this is really great...makes me think and rejoice that God loves me no matter what.

April 5, 2017
  • 1
Diane Symborski✝
Diane Symborski✝

Prayer: Heavenly Father, I ask for and accept Your forgiveness for my sins. Help me return to You in every area of my life. Consume me with Your love Lord and let me see through Your eyes today, in the name of Jesus Christ I pray. Amen. <3

 

Thank you for the devotion Pastor Dion. :-)

April 6, 2017
  • 1
Ticardo Williams
Ticardo Williams

Praise God!  Thanks Pastor Todd!  Heavenly Father, I ask for and accept Your forgiveness for my sins. Help me return to You in every area of my life. Consume me with Your love Lord and let me see through Your eyes today, in the Name of Jesus Christ I pray.  Amen.

April 6, 2017
  • 1
Wesley Paulus
Wesley Paulus

Amen! Pastors prayer, Heavenly Father, I ask for and accept your forgiveness for my sins. Help me return to you in every area of my life. Consume me with your love Lord and let me see through your eyes today, in the name of Jesus Christ I pray Amen!!

April 6, 2017
  • 1
Janet Marsh-Lord
Janet Marsh-Lord

Amen.

April 6, 2017
  • 1
Ida Ruth Rodriguez
Ida Ruth Rodriguez

Amen!♡

April 14, 2017