Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Thoughts on Hebrews Study Questions from 11/19


THOUGHTS ON HEBREWS STUDY QUESTIONS

My Sunday School Life Group is studying Hebrews. Every Monday, I post questions that were discussed the day before in Sunday School. I invite you to ponder/think about them and jot down your thoughts.

On Wednesdays, I post some of the ideas that came up in the Life Group's discussion for you to consider and compare with your thoughts.  


These questions were discussed in my Life Group Monday. This post presents thoughts from the class discussion.

Chapter 9
Vv 11-15

We started this week with an impromptu discussion on assorted Hebrew/Jewish topics.
Blood
Usually considered a stain on clothing as opposed to a cleansing agent.
However, in a body blood carries carbon dioxide and other waste products away from cells and delivers oxygen and food to them.
Ashes.
Can be used in soap.
Numbers 19: 9 and 17-19: “A man who is clean shall gather up the ashes of the heifer and put them in a ceremonially clean place outside the camp. They are to be kept by the Israelite community for use in the water of cleansing; it is for purification from sin." ... “For the unclean person, put some ashes from the burned purification offering into a jar and pour fresh water over them. Then a man who is ceremonially clean is to take some hyssop, dip it in the water and sprinkle the tent and all the furnishings and the people who were there. He must also sprinkle anyone who has touched a human bone or a grave or anyone who has been killed or anyone who has died a natural death. The man who is clean is to sprinkle those who are unclean on the third and seventh days, and on the seventh day he is to purify them. Those who are being cleansed must wash their clothes and bathe with water, and that evening they will be clean."   
Problems with sacrifices for sin.
Did not clean the conscience. The person who sacrificed still had guilt. The history of Judaism is filled with guilt.
Now prayers have replaced sacrifices. Titles and times: Abraham/morning. Isaac/evening. Jacob/afternoon.

What good things are already here?


Sins are forgiven not covered.
Salvation.
Eternal reward.
Heavenly tabernacle awaits.

What’s the significance of Christ’s “once for all” entry into the HofH?


ONE TIME lasts forever.
It obtained to opportunity of eternal redemption for all.

Blood cleansing vs. heifer ashes. ‘Sup wit dat?


Ashes can be used in soap.
Ashes are pure--the impurities have been burned out.

Why would sprinkling blood on an object make it clean?


Evidence of the sacrifice and planning by the sacrificer. 
As above: blood carries good to cells and removes bad from cells.

We Got This Far This Week

If you'd like a PDF of the pages of questions in table form with room for you to write answers, email me at 

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Monday, November 20, 2017

Study Questions on Hebrews for 11/19

HEBREWS STUDY QUESTIONS

My Sunday School Life Group is studying Hebrews. Every Monday, I post questions that were discussed the day before in Sunday School. I invite you to ponder/think about them and jot down your thoughts.

On Wednesdays, I post some of the ideas that came up in the Life Group's discussion for you to consider and compare with your thoughts.  


These questions were discussed in my Life Group yesterday. Take time to reflect on them. I'll post thoughts from the class discussion on Wednesday.


Chapter 9
Vv 11-15

What good things are already here?

What’s the significance of Christ’s “once for all” entry into the HofH?

Blood cleansing vs. heifer ashes. ‘Sup wit dat?

Why would sprinkling blood on an object make it clean?


We Got This Far This Week

What does Christ’s blood cleanse? Why is that essential?

Comment on the last part of v14.


Called? See Romans 8:28




If you'd like a PDF of the pages of questions in table form with room for you to write answers, email me at 
Follow me on Twitter: @CRDowningAuthor and Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CRDowningAuthor
My website is: www.crdowning.com

I'd appreciate your feedback as a comment on Blogger!

Almanac. Teachers Pay Teachers and more


Just before Black Friday, here are two sources of gifts you can’t miss!
I thought I’d lead with some serious hyperbole. Of course you can miss these sources. I hope you won’t.

If you need a gift for a teacher . . .
The title of this post includes Teachers Pay Teachers. That’s a web-based store where teachers offer ideas, lessons, activities, and other items they’ve developed for sale.
Here’s my “store page.” I’ve got 27 products listed. Some are FREE. Most cost between $1.00 and $6.00 and are iterations of things I’ve done in my classes. All my items include extensive teacher notes. You can download a free sample of them all.

Interestingly, my “best seller” is an idea I had for an Anatomy and Physiology class long after I stopped teaching that subject. I’ve never used “Human Body World,” but teachers who’ve left comments say their students love it.

My second biggest seller is a Powerpoint, “How to Graph Scientific Data.” That does not surprise me.

I’ve worked with a former student and now a dynamite 2nd grade teacher, Dawn Jenkins Himaka on a product for elementary students. Called “The Very Best Animal,” the activity combines English/Language Arts with Ecology concepts where each student develops a campaign for “the best animal” in a given biome.

Of course, my activities are science oriented and target middle-high school students. If the teacher you’re buying for doesn’t match that profile, there are hundreds of thousands of items on the site.

Make two teachers happy and buy a gift for the teacher in your life from Teachers Pay Teachers.

Fiction and Non-Fiction I've written

I’ve put together a sampler from all my books. It’s a 77-page PDF file with about 2500 words from each of my books. 
I've included samples from three as yet unpublished books--the bottom row of covers in the photo above. 

I hope you’ll read through it. When you find a sample that piques your interest, follow the link in the PDF and snag a copy from Amazon.

If you do, I’ll be your best friend.

Here’s a list of all my books with links, if you don’t want/need a sample to hook you.
Books by C. R. Downing

Traveler’s HOT L - The Time Traveler’s Resort
©2014 Koehler Books
The first eight award-winning accounts of time travel and its results

Traveler’s HOT L Volume Two - 2nd Edition
New Tales from the Time Traveler’s Resort
©2014 Time After Time Publishing
Six more accounts of time travel and its sometimes-unexpected results.

Insecticide - A Science Fiction Thriller
©2017 Clurn Publishing
An epic tale of alien intrigue and invasion. In the end, the reader must decide is the title of the book a description or a prediction.

The Observers - A Science Fiction Odyssey
©2014 Koehler Books
Follow two bumbling operatives on four hilariously unforgettable missions

The Mixer Murder - A Mamba Mystery Volume 1
©2015 Mamba Mystery Press
Four cases of private investigator Phil Mamba. The last case is a “you solve it” story with evidence-including fingerprints!

egamI esreveR - A Timeless Tale from The Traveler’s HOT L Vol 3
©2015 Time After Time Press
Life in an antiparallel universe is more than simply reversed.

Patterns on PagesSecrets of the Sequenced Symbols – Traveler’s HOT L Vol. 4
@2017 Time after Time Press
Can two illiterates from the distant future save humanity from extinction?

Sir Isaac’s Car – 9 Tales of Daring and Disaster
©2017 CRD Publishing
Follow the (mis)adventures of Henry Langdon his best friend Aaron Freemont

Non-Fiction
Tune Up Your Teaching and Turn On Student Learning
Move from Common to Transformed Teaching
and Learning in Your Classroom
©2015 Morgan James Publishing
Strategies and examples for changing the way learning takes place. For Teachers, Parents, and Administrators

NICUAn Insider’s Guide
©2017 CRD Press
The story of Hadley Marie Downing’s 60 days in NICU intermixed with commentary from one and two years later. Also included are lessons learned, advice for helping others in this situation, and a glossary of NICU terms.

Idea FarmingA Science Guy’s Read on Writing – Volume 1
©2015 CRD Publishing
A discussion of the best ways to grow a bumper crop of short stories, novellas, anthologies, and novels grown in an analogy of writing as farming.




Friday, November 17, 2017

Expressions of Faith. Hebrews Ch 7. Complete Salvation


but because Jesus lives forever, he has a permanent priesthood. Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them.
Such a high priest truly meets our need—one who is holy, blameless, pure, set apart from sinners, exalted above the heavens. Unlike the other high priests, he does not need to offer sacrifices day after day, first for his own sins, and then for the sins of the people. He sacrificed for their sins once for all when he offered himself.
 Hebrews 7:24-27

Complete Salvation

Starting with Moses, Jews had a High Priest as their spiritual leader.
The last High Priest needed is Jesus.

The High Priesthood of Jesus
  • is permanent. Christ is eternal.
  • provides complete salvation, from all sin, forever.
  • meets our needs. He is holy, blameless, pure, set apart, exalted.
  • requires no sacrifices on an altar. Christ gave Himself as the ultimate sacrifice.


If you haven’t taken advantage of this eternal offer, why not do it today?
Christ, the eternal High Priest, is waiting to forgive you!


Next Expression of Faith: An Undivided Heart
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I'd appreciate your feedback!

Email me at crd.author@gmail.com

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Timeless Truths. Baccalaureate Address. Does God Give Make-up Tests?


This is the part one of third in a series of blog posts that were originally Baccalaureate Addresses for the Monte Vista High School Classes of 1981v& 1984, probably 1985 &1988, and 1 year with no reference date, probably in the 1980s, too.

Originally, each Address was part of a Baccalaureate ceremony. Not once in the five times that I was asked to speak was I given any limitations. Because of that, I preached five sermons with a salvation message in each. I'm grateful to God and the MV Administrations for those opportunities.

For these blog posts, the Addresses are presented over two weeks. They didn't take that long at the time of delivery. Now, part of the second week will be a reflection and comments on what I might change if I was giving the address in 2017.

Each Address included a “magic trick.” I am not a magician. My magic tricks required minimal digital dexterity—digital meaning fingers not computer savvy. I thought about videoing myself doing them, but I gave away the prop box, and now it’s missing. When possible,  I’ve included a link to a YouTube video of the trick. 

Each of the colors used for the bottles in this post represents the color of solution used in the magic trick in 1981.

If you are an MV grad in the year of one of these Baccalaureate Addresses, I hope it brings back a fond memory. 

If you are not an MV grad in the year of one of these Baccalaureate Addresses, I hope it becomes a fond memory for you.

Read on, MacDuff!!

David again brought together all the able young men of Israel—thirty thousand. He and all his men went to Baalah in Judah to bring up from there the ark of God, which is called by the Name, the name of the LORD Almighty, who is enthroned between the cherubim on the ark.
They set the ark of God on a new cart and brought it from the house of Abinadab, which was on the hill. Uzzah and Ahio, sons of Abinadab, were guiding the new cart with the ark of God on it, and Ahio was walking in front of it.
David and all Israel were celebrating with all their might before the LORD, with castanets, harps, lyres, timbrels, sistrums and cymbals. When they came to the threshing floor of Nakon, Uzzah reached out and took hold of the ark of God, because the oxen stumbled.
The LORD’s anger burned against Uzzah because of his irreverent act; therefore God struck him down, and he died there beside the ark of God.
2 Samuel 6:1-7


In those days Hezekiah became ill and was at the point of death. The prophet Isaiah son of Amoz went to him and said, “This is what the LORD says: Put your house in order, because you are going to die; you will not recover.”
Hezekiah turned his face to the wall and prayed to the LORD, “Remember, LORD, how I have walked before you faithfully and with wholehearted devotion and have done what is good in your eyes.” And Hezekiah wept bitterly.
Before Isaiah had left the middle court, the word of the LORD came to him: “Go back and tell Hezekiah, the ruler of my people, ‘This is what the LORD, the God of your father David, says: I have heard your prayer and seen your tears; I will heal you. On the third day from now you will go up to the temple of the LORD. I will add fifteen years to your life. And I will deliver you and this city from the hand of the king of Assyria. I will defend this city for my sake and for the sake of my servant David.’ ”
2 Kings 20:1-6


Now a man named Ananias, together with his wife Sapphira, also sold a piece of property. With his wife’s full knowledge he kept back part of the money for himself, but brought the rest and put it at the apostles’ feet.
Then Peter said, “Ananias, how is it that Satan has so filled your heart that you have lied to the Holy Spirit and have kept for yourself some of the money you received for the land? Didn’t it belong to you before it was sold? And after it was sold, wasn’t the money at your disposal? What made you think of doing such a thing? You have not lied just to human beings but to God.”
When Ananias heard this, he fell down and died. And great fear seized all who heard what had happened. Then some young men came forward, wrapped up his body, and carried him out and buried him.
About three hours later his wife came in, not knowing what had happened. Peter asked her, “Tell me, is this the price you and Ananias got for the land?”
“Yes,” she said, “that is the price.”
Peter said to her, “How could you conspire to test the Spirit of the Lord? Listen! The feet of the men who buried your husband are at the door, and they will carry you out also.” At that moment she fell down at his feet and died. Then the young men came in and, finding her dead, carried her out and buried her beside her husband.
Acts 5:1-10

  
Whenever a school assignment is missed or done so poorly as to be useless, make-up is on everyone's mind. Some teachers are sympathetic. They allow weeks to pass before mentioning the need to make-up the missed work. By then the material is long forgotten, and making it up is hard.

Other teachers are hard-nosed about make-up. They require make-up work to be done as soon as the student returns to class. Not a pleasant thought after two days of the flu.

Something in between is usually the alternative.

How about 1n real life? What if an opportunity is missed or something is done so poorly that it might as well have never been done?

Does God give make-up tests?

Well, yes ... and no.

Confused?

Hang on.

Sometimes God doesn’t give an opportunity for make-up. In the Old Testament, there is an example of God’s “No Make-up Allowed” policy in II Samuel 6:6-7.

Uzzah, a priest of the Lord, is part of the group responsible for bringing the Ark of the Covenant back to Jerusalem as commanded by King David. The Ark had been in the small town of Baalah for several years since before King Saul’s reign ended.

Joy fills the air as the happy group nears home. One of the oxen pulling the cart the Ark is on stumbles. Uzzah reaches out his hand to prevent the Ark from tumbling to the ground.

God struck him down then and there because of his irreverence and lack of faith. He died beside the Ark.

“No, fair!” you say.

No. No FAITH. Uzzah lacked the faith to believe that the God who created the universe and parted the waters of the Red Sea could keep the Ark from falling off an ox-cart.

All the Israelites had been instructed not to touch the Ark. The priests even carried it to the cart with the special poles used to move it whenever it needed to be moved.

Uzzah touched that Ark and failed his test. There there was no make-up.

Old Testament stories are, well they’re old! Surely the loving God of the New Testament always gives make-up.

Not always.

Acts 5: 1-11 relates the fate of Ananias and his wife, Sapphira. These two agreed among themselves to defraud God instead of giving some of their money freely and gratefully. Both died the instant their deceit was revealed.

Peter asked Sapphira, “Why did you and your husband put the Lord’s Spirit to the test?”

God accepts no lies. Putting “the Lord’s Spirit to the test” is a time when God’s “No Make-up Allowed” policy might in effect. When the motive for an act is to build ourselves up instead of acknowledging God’s grace and showing the gratitude due to Him, there could be “No Make-up Allowed.”

The word “could” appears advisedly in the preceding paragraph. There are multitudes of examples of God's grace affording make-up opportunities. Let’s turn back to the Old Testament. 2 Kings 20: 1-11 is the story of a king who was a pouter.

Hezekiah, king of Judah, led a full life. As one of the few “good” kings of the Southern Kingdom, he instituted reforms that helped turn the nation back to God. It was his time to die.

King Hezekiah couldn't accept God's plan. He cried, more likely he bawled his eyes out before he “turned his face to the wall.” (Verse 2) Hezekiah, King of Judah gave God an old-fashioned pouting spell.

It gets worse. Next, in verse 3, Hezekiah says, “Remember, LORD, how I have walked before you faithfully and with wholehearted devotion and have done what is good in your eyes.”

This part of the passage ends with a most un-kingly statement. “And Hezekiah wept bitterly.” My interpretation would read, “Hezekiah wanted make-up work!”

God granted his petition for a chance to do make-up work. He lived an additional 15-years.

Hezekiah's make-up was not as successful as he had hoped. For pridefully showing off his wealth to an enemy ruler, he lost that wealth, and his descendants were cursed to be eunuchs during the Babylon captivity.

Compounding matters resulting from Hezekiah’s make-up time, a son, Manasseh, was born to him during the fifteen make-up years. All scholars and anyone who reads 2 Kings, consider Manasseh to be one of the worse kings of Judah. He condoned rebuilding the pagan temples torn down by Hezekiah.

“That’s a bummer,” you might say before asking, “When God allows make-up, is it always bad?”

No.
Stay tuned. We’ll finish this journey next week.
 Oooooh! A cliffhanger!

Next weekDoes God Give Make-up Tests? Conclusion


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