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As It is Written

“As it is written” is a phrase that appears in the Bible on 68 occurrences that appear in 33 different translations of the Bible, including KJV, ASV, MKJV, NASB, and HCSB. Matthew chapter 4 uses a different variation of the phrase in the NASB, for instance, but Jesus responds to the tempter repeatedly with a reference to what is written (vv. 4, 7, 10).

What we discover in Jeremiah chapter 36 is the importance of the written record. With all of the denial of what Jeremiah and other prophets were saying to God’s people, the written record would withstand the test of time and provide evidence of what was said over time.

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Many days mark the starting point of something new. Yet, today marks the start of multiple new beginnings.

  • 2021 30-Day Prayer Challenge
  • Shawna Cook of Brown Girl Bible Study releases pre-orders of her new book
  • Jeremiah Journey Week 35 continues with Live @ Lunch Bible Study

2021 30-Day Prayer Challenge

Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer

Romans 12:12 (ESV)

As we embark on this prayer challenge to pray more day by day, we must keep the latter portion of this verse in mind.

“. . . be constant in prayer.”

Let us stay constant in prayer and consistent in our prayer life. Let this challenge serve as a means for you to learn more about prayer and your own prayer life as well as deepening your relationship with God through prayer. Join the challenge today!

Orders Being Taken for Brown Girl Bible Study

View the broadcast recording

My recent guest on Coffee & Chat with Rev Bruce was Shawna Cook of Brown Girl Bible Study and she shared about her upcoming book which is a journal through the New Testament epistle of Philippians. Visit Brown Girl Bible Study to learn how to order your copy today.

The Jeremiah Journey Continues with Live @ Lunch Bible Study

We’ve been doing it chapter by chapter week by week. The plan is to continue doing it: chapter by chapter, week by week throughout 2021. It’s all 52 chapters of the Book of Jeremiah for all 52 weeks of the calendar year. It’s all about the weeping prophet and how he carried God’s message to God’s people despite their resistance and refusal to hear him openly. It’s all about getting a better understanding of what God’s Word says and what God’s Word has for you to learn and live out today.

Join us today!!
Word cloud of chapter 35

It all happens every Wednesday at 11 AM PST on our YouTube channel. Be sure to check it out today and visit our Bible Study & Beyond playlist to view past livestream episodes.

This week we look at chapter 35 and the rewards of obeying God’s commands. The chapter includes the Rechabites and their commitment to the commands of their forefather Jonadab. God uses this group of individuals and their collective dedication the commands of Jonadab to demonstrate a vital lesson to both Israel and Judah. Look further for more information on chapter 35 online beyond my own blog posts if that helps your Bible study and understanding of the text. There are other blogs with insights into the descendants of Jonadab and their obedience.

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The Takeaway: God’s Messengers Deliver God’s Message, Not Their Own

Chapter 28 gives the indication that false prophets get what they deserve for getting people to follow their lies. Misleading the flock of God makes things troublesome for both the false prophets and those who are fooled into following them. Hananiah the son of Azzur of Gibeon found out the hard way that his two-year captivity prophecy led to him be chastised and cursed to die within the same year of his pronounced prophecy.

And Jeremiah the prophet said to the prophet Hananiah, “Listen, Hananiah, the LORD has not sent you, and you have made this people trust in a lie. Therefore, thus says the LORD: ‘Behold, I will remove you from the face of the earth. This year you shall die, because you have uttered rebellion against the LORD.”

Jeremiah 28:15-16 (ESV)

The fatality of false prophecy is devastating for more than the false prophet. In chapter 29, we see how God confirms his exile of the captives to Babylon for 70 years. However, He also points out that the people had resisted and rejected the messages of His servants the prophets again and again. He points out how much horror would be endured by the people of God who remained in the land, saying: “because they have not listened to My words,’ declares the Lord, ‘which I sent to them again and again by My servants the prophets; but you did not listen,’ declares the Lord” (Jeremiah 29:19, NASB). His judgement, as God discloses it to His people through His prophets, is fueled with an anger that is kindled by His people’s rebellion and disobedience. As Pastor Powell pointed out during this week’s livestream: “God does not have to tolerate falsehood.” He has His own way of dealing with such things as in the case of Hananiah and what we will see about Shemaiah in chapter 29.

Tips, Tools & Techniques

This week we have included a bible study resource specifically designed for this chapter and Jeremiah 29:11. A Deeper Look at Jeremiah 29:11 gives you a simple strategy for Bible study with some tips on incorporating annotation in your Bible study time. Be sure to download your FREE copy of this Bible study resource to help with discovering more about a text than just the surface and superficial meaning of the words that appear in its contents.

Teaser: Where Do You Fit In God’s Plans? [Jeremiah Chapter 29]

For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans for prosperity and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. – Jeremiah 29:11 (NASB)

You have probably heard Jeremiah 29:11 time and time again roll off the tongues of sanctified and holy folks like its an outpouring of a treasured blessing. However, take a moment to join us in this study of Jeremiah chapter 29 and see if this is a message intended for you as part of God’s plan for you.

Much like many other passages in the Scriptures that are often plucked out and placed in a position that takes them out of context, Jeremiah 29:11 has been used as an “inspirational quote” to give hope and uplift souls for years. At the heart of Bible study is to understand the contents within its context. Take some time to get deeper into your practice of Bible study as we explain and examine some of the falsehood attached to Jeremiah 29:11 that many of God’s people have mistakenly imposed and juxtaposed using this biblical text out of context.

This ain’t Drake rhyming on God’s Plan that we’re talking about here. People can find themselves mistakenly taking the Bible out of context as they try to make each and every verse fit into God’s plan for their lives. God’s desire is that you come to know His Word on an intimate level and discern the things that are set apart for our learning.

Are you trying to identify with exiles from Judah in Babylonian captivity? Are you seeking to identify with folks who did not listen to God’s warnings and had to endure 70 years of captivity? If that is not you, then don’t allow yourself to be misled by what sounds good or sounds somewhat inspirational or uplifting. Understand that you have a different position and role in God’s eternal plan as a believer walking in faith and that, although it sounds good, that message in Jeremiah 29:11 is not directed to you or destined for you. Look at a post by a fellow blogger that gets into how Jeremiah 29:11 helped with need for clarity in a discussion with a friend on the matter. One of the best resources on this issue is a video by Allen Parr that most definitely have to check out for yourself.

This week’s Bible study discussion guide gives you some insight into grasping a better understanding of this familiar text. Take some time this weekend and get familiar with the study guide and see what else chapter 29 has available to us.

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You have rejected me, declare the Lord; you keep going backward

So I have stretched out my hand against you and destroy you-

I am weary of relenting

Jeremiah 15:6 (ESV)

Four Destroyers Identified by the Lord

The Lord is set to unleash His wrath. He has declared to destroy those in rebellion. In the prior chapter, He brought up how He would consume His people with the sword, famine and pestilence. God is filled with plenty of anger regarding His people and He has plenty to say about their coming doom. In verse 3, God points out that there will be four kinds of destroyers: the sword, dogs, birds, and beasts. He lays out how each will destroy in its own way. It seems like each and every thing that God decides to use has its own purpose in His plan.

God Uses Whatever to Get Our Attention

God is no stranger to using a variety of measures to grab someone’s attention. Can you recall the ten plagues bak in Egypt? After all of that, Pharaoh still sought to take out Moses and the children of Israelites near the Red Sea. That was a whole different type of lesson learned there.

God will use whatever He needs to use in order to get our attention. In this case, it appears that much of this is a reminder to Israel and Judah for their wandering into idolatry, bowing before other gods and walking away from God by refusing to repent.

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Is God done yet? Take a wild guess. We’re scheduled to do each chapter in Jeremiah. That’s 52 chapters. We are only in chapter 15. I can only imagine what else has to say to His people. And there are plenty of weeks ahead of us to let us know that we will see more challenges.

Tune in for the Live @ Lunch Bible chat on Wednesdays at 11 AM PST. . . Follow the playlist: Bible Study & Beyond

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O Lord, though our iniquities testify against us,
Do it for Your name’s sake;
For our backslidings are many,
We have sinned against You.

Jeremiah 14:7 (NKJV)

The Reason for the Desolation

God’s people had gone astray and refused to turn back to God in repentance. It sounds simple, but it gotten real sticky for a while. God explains it when he points how these people “have loved to wander” and “not restrained their feet” (v. 10, NKJV). In other words, God’s got good reasoning for not supporting or supplying this people. The desolation leads to a newfound devastation that creates desperation.

The Desperate Request for Help

The request in verse 7 is as close as the wayward nation gets to saying that they have stirred up the anger of God. It is the closest thing that we see to an outright admission of their own iniquities and how they trespassed and transgressed against God. Yet, they only seek a rescue. They offer no repentance for their sins, just acknowledgement.

The Response to Desperate Cries for Help

“. . . Do not pray for the welfare for this people.” [Jeremiah 14:11(ESV)]. God just comes out and says it without any hesitation. This seems to echo what God shared in chapter 11 about not praying for these same people.

In fact, this is only the follow-up to God sharing that it is time to remember their sins and punish them accordingly for these sins.

When they fast, I will not hear their cry; and when they offer burnt offering and grain offering, I will not accept them. But I will consume them by the sword, by the famine, and by the pestilence. (Jeremiah 14:12, NKJV).

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Have you not brought this upon yourself

by forsaking the Lord your God, when he led you in the way?

jeremiah 2:17 (ESV)

Week 1 Recap:

Jeremiah is called by God and given some anointed actions to go along with his appointment, and God offers Jeremiah both warnings and assurance.

Week 1 Summary:

God’s calling on your life can change everything.

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You Played Yourself When You Turned from God

Jeremiah is directed to “Go and proclaim in the hearing of Jerusalem, Thus says the Lord. . .” (v.2), and that gets the ball rolling on a windfall of complaints against Israel from God about her conduct as one who was at one point “holy to the Lord” (v. 3). It is almost as if you hear God’s thunderous voice bellowing with anger as He directes Jeremiah. Israel has no ground to stand on as God lays out His complaint against them.

What Wrong Did Your Fathers Find in Me?

God points out that the issue isn’t a new problem. This is generational, passed down from father to children over time. He shares that it is a problem with the priests, the shepherds and the prophets as leaders, but it is the entire nation that has provoked God. “Therefore I still contend with you. . . and with your children’s children I will contend (v. 9).”

Have You Not Brought This Upon Yourself?

Don’t go blaming the Devil who supposedly entrapped you with enticements that you just could not handle. You got yourself into this one. God claims in verse 13 that he has charges against his people since they “committed two evils.” He further explains Israel’s self-imposed wrath in verse 19, plainly stating: “Your evil will chastise you , and your apostasy will reprove you. . . the fear of me is not in you , declares the Lord God of hosts.” Verse 22 provides an image that even washing with the strongest of detergents and soap won’t help cleanse this nation. “You have all transgressed against me, declares the Lord” (v.29).

Saying You’re Innocent Only Angers God More

With all of the evidence God stated against them, Israel was bold enough to try to claim innocence. But it is a if Israel’s claim of innocence angered God even more. In verse 35, Israel’s pronouncement of innocence causes God to speak vehemently: “. . . Behold, I will bring you to judgment for saying,’I have not sinned.’ ” God speaks of the nation being put to shame by both Egypt and Assyria. God will give His children that whooping out in the front yard like old school God-fearing parents used to do in the community right where all of our neighbors could see, much akin to the Law where it speaks of “before his tent”

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Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor

Ecclesiastes 4:9 (NIV)

Now is not the time to quit.

We are just getting started on the Jeremiah Journey and we have an entire year ahead of us.

We can find ourselves stuck when we do not have the necessary support to go the distance. We get weary and leary and we want to quit. We are ready surrender under the weight of the responsibility of carrying on and going any further. But as Norman Vincent Peale said: “It is always to early to quit.”

Accept this as our connecting and collaborating on the Jeremiah Journey together. As I have openly and honestly shared in the past posts, I have come this way before. I have been on this journey in my past, and I lost my way and caved in to the urge to surrender.

Not this time.

We are on this journey together. Whether you want to learn more about one of the major prophets or you simply seek an extensive study that covers the entire year, the Jeremiah Journey fits the bill. It covers the entire year. It covers a major prophet in Jeremiah. However, life will still happen. Illness will still attack your body. Stress will remain a factor. Tests and trials will still pop up throughout our days. I offer you support to help you go and grow.

Join us for our Bible discussion on Jeremiah Chapter 1 via YouTube today at 9:30 AM PST

Dive Deep into the Text via Discussion

Our Live @ Lunch Bible Study is a weekly livestream that incorporates a discussion on the biblical text and a relevant topic to today’s Christian. This is not designed for theology majors and seminary students. This is for the everyday Christian believer and those who are interested in learning more about the Christian faith. Let this discussion help you gain more perspective on the Bible and its contents. Use the chat and comments on YouTube or Twitch to pose questions and your own ideas to help you along the Jeremiah Journey.

Dig Deeper into the Text with Bible Study Resources

We developed the Bible Study Resource List to serve as a help to those who might get stuck and feel like they need to stop. Tap into the resource list and its contents to push you to dig into the text at a deeper level. Use this resource list to expand and enhance your study of the Bible as you continue on the Jeremiah Journey.

Additional support can be found via other blogs such as The Simple Preacher and the Devotional Guy. They offer straightforward reflections on the Word of God that you might find of interest. Also, other blogs offer insights into the Book of Jeremiah, too. You find out what the Book of Jeremiah teaches us or gain a political perspective on the Book of Jeremiah with the Christian Mind.

Whatever you do, don’t quit. We’re just getting started. And we’re on this journey together.

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And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.

Galatians 6:9 (esv)
Making more homemade meals has been just one added benefit of the challenge so far

Reflection on Day 8

I roasted some baby potatoes seasoned with rosemary and garlic the other day, filling the house with a tantalizing aroma as it blended with some roasted vegetables. Day #8 had me baking some much larger Russet potatoes combined with the same medley of roasted vegetables. I dressed my baked potato with rice and vermicelli mixture and black beans with chopped green onions. (You don’t see that plated because once you pop open a baked potato. . . well, if you don’t know, you just don’t know about it.) I might try adding sautéed mushrooms and onions with the next one, but I recognize that even something as basic as a baked potato does not have to remain plain and bland. With the right touch of herbs and accompaniment from complimentary vegetables, you can dress up any seemingly plain dish to the point where you feel like an artisan in midst of a standout creation. And it tastes good. Plus, with these larger potatoes and their added toppings, I found myself filled and satisfied by one potato and a couple of servings of roasted vegetables like carrots, broccoli, cauliflower and Brussels sprouts.

One of my goals was to eat more vegetables. Another was to increase the variety of fruit and vegetables that I consume, especially various colors such as red, orange, yellow, purples and greens. As I approach Day #9, I have indeed met my mark for consuming veggies. I just need to keep pushing myself with the fruit, especially the berries.

Focus on Faith

Live @ Lunch Bible Study
Download Live @ Lunch Bible Study Lesson: Undefiled Part 2

This 10-Day Detox Challenge started based upon my personal study on preventable chronic disease among minorities, in particular among Blacks and LatinX communities. It was also sparked by my Old Testament biblical study and research surrounding Daniel and his refusal to defile himself with the Babylonian king’s delicacies. That also took shape in the form of our Live @ Lunch Bible Study series Undefiled with its second part coming up this Wednesday at 12 PM PST via livestream.

Focus on Fuel

My fuel for today is all about antioxidants, the foods that naturally counteract the damaging effects of certain toxins on living organisms like the human body. I want to continue to clear out my system naturally and strengthen my body as I am able. If that means coming up with an alternative option for adding more berries, so be it. If that means granola or oatmeal with a nut-based milk like Almond Breeze, then I am going for it. Also, I am dying to crank out some of these Almond Breeze blueberry pancakes that Jessica Alexandra has as a featured recipe. That might be Day #10, though. No matter how I spin it or look at it, I am compelled to get more antioxidants on the menu and by adding berries of all sorts, especially blueberries, I am going to be on the right track.

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Focus on Fitness

My journey today takes me to a new peak. I have done the things to increase my heart rate in the past few days. My visit to the scale showed that I had only lost 1.5 lbs, but I also know the numerous other benefits that i have experienced over the last week. Yet, I totally get it. I was not pushing myself to any new level or degree with exercise due to the unknown for me. I was not sure about my energy level throughout this process. Let me say that the right way. I was not sure about what my energy level would be throughout this entire process and that makes it hard to plan and prepare for an extensive and intensive workout plan. I know next time that I can push it a little further and harder due to this initial experience. You got to keep in mind that I have never fasted before and I have done a primarily vegetarian diet with fish and chicken even turkey bacon in the past. This was an entirely new perspective with a goal of detoxification, not simply a shift to veganism.

It’s always too early to quit

Norman vincent peale

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But joyful are those who have the God of Israel[a] as their helper,

    whose hope is in the Lord their God. 

-Psalm 146:3-5 (NLT)

Put Focus on 5 and Put Your Trust in God

I have spent nearly 10 months redefining and rerouting my goals and resetting my immediate action agenda. With only 60 days left in 2020, it is time to roll out some new initiatives. In the meantime, I am steady cranking out videos whether for my weekly Bible study with Pastor Powell or Coffee & Chat with Rev Bruce every Saturday. One surely beneficial element to all of this productivity is the increase amount of digital products available for download on the Life Path Multimedia electronic storefront like my Bible study outline or even a sermon presentation. I have fallen behind a bit on the podcast, but I am tackling it one by one.

I usually take the advice of the Simple Preacher or Unashamed of Jesus when it comes to looking at the Bible through a different perspectives and fresh voices. Yet, I took another systems approach and strategy for tackling the remainder of 2020. My focus on 5 has allowed me to set my goals and actions in alignment. I have been able to line up my top tier goals and identify 5 for me to focus on the next 60 days. I used Brian Tracy’s Goals! and the Brian Moran’s The 12 Week Year. I will update you on my progress with these goals periodically in future posts.

The Bible study on God & Government has been going well. We have seen more views in the past on our study of the Temple of God. However, I believe that God & Government’s highlight was about Christ Criminalized and Crucified. After all, I got to where my highly controversial t-shirt for that episode.

Live@Lunch Bible Study

This upcoming lesson is the final lesson of the series. It focuses on not trusting or bragging on human leadership. It hinges upon 1 Corinthians 3:21 and Isaiah 2:22 along with Psalm 146:3-5. The series has not kicked off with as much fanfare as the likes of Bunkerville or even that of Steve Dennis and his blog.

More Good News to Come

As we wrap up 2020, I am staying busy. I still have a book of poetry in the works and I am almost done editing some more digital products. Those things are yet to come, but I am promoting the fast-approaching weeklong campaign for Life Path Mobile Ministries called Giving Thanks by Giving Back. More details will be released this week.

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Live @ Lunch Bible Study with Rev Bruce and Pastor John Powell, Jr.
God & Government Part 1 10-1-20

On October 1, Pastor John Powell, Jr. of Christ Temple Church of Holiness in San Diego and I launched our online Bible study series on God & Government. We had just wrapped up a series on the Living as the Temple of God in September, so we found it appropriate with the upcoming election and the current social climate to delve into the social-political aspects of the Word of God.

Why Bible Study at Lunch?

Oddly enough, the Bible encourages the believer to live a life of honor before the eyes of others. More specifically in 1 Peter 2:13-17, the believers are instructed to live as an encouragement and example before Gentiles in the hopes of quelling “ignorant talk.” But this is learned behavior, and if we are to apply this to our daily lives among others, lunch provides a perfect storm of a midday break with another opportunity to show and share as we return to our cubicle or workstation.

How Live @ Lunch Bible Study Started

If the Christian is to learn about it, he or she had also better be ready to apply it. Lunchtime learning gives us that midday moment of reflection to check ourselves and how we have gone about our day thus far. It’s the perfect halftime for us to reflect, recharge and return with new insights or just a simple reminder on how to live as a follower of Christ moment by moment.

Live @ Lunch Bible Study is just another element of Life Path Multimedia Ministry. You can still access Coffee & Chat with Rev Bruce and mini motivational video segments like Stepping Up with SMART Goals and the Ministry Minute playlist.

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