Ezekiel 46:9
“But when the people of the land come before the Lord on the appointed feast days, whoever enters by way of the north gate to worship shall go out by way of the south gate; and whoever enters by way of the south gate shall go out by way of the north gate. He shall not return by way of the gate through which he came, but shall go out through the opposite gate.”

Ezekiel is establishing some rules that will guide the people as they worship at the Temple. Some of these guidelines were clearly spelled out by Moses hundreds of years earlier, while others seem to be brand new. One such regulation required the people to leave the city from the opposite gate from which they had entered. If they came in from the south, they had to leave from the north, and vice-versa. No clear explanation is given, but it is not too difficult to draw some application for the believer today. Simply put, we should leave worship different than how we arrived.

True worship is drawing near to God, and getting our eyes on the Lord. When this happens, we will begin to see ourself in light of who God is. The brightness of His glory will illuminate our lives and expose those things He desires to change. If I come into worship angry, bitter, or filled with unforgiveness, the glory of who God is will shine upon my heart.  His glory will expose those things, and lead me to the cross, where I can lay them down and leave free of their burden. If we leave worship the same as we came into worship, it is likely we were involved in more of a concert or a sing along, than a time spent in the presence of the God of Glory.

It is valuable to prepare your heart to seek the Lord. To take a few moments before you begin singing to simply ask God to search your heart, and give Him license to make any changes He determines necessary. One of the great benefits of worship is that we are in the presence of the only one with the actual power to change us.

Pastor Jim


It Stands To Reason 

1 Samuel 12:7
“Now therefore, stand still, that I may reason with you before the Lord concerning all the righteous acts of the Lord which He did to you and your fathers . . .”

After a great battle in which the men of Jabesh Gilead were rescued from certain destruction, the nation of Israel gathered in Gilgal to inaugurate Saul as their king. As part of the process, Samuel the prophet, now an aged man, stood before the people to persuade them to continue to follow the Lord. To influence their decision, he did not seek to stir their emotions, but to incite their reason. He suggests that it is reasonable to believe in, follow after, and serve the Lord.

Webster defines reasonable as, “not extreme or excessive”, or as the use of “sound judgment.” Some words synonymous with reasonable are – rational, logical and sensible. Essentially, Samuel is suggesting the most reasonable thing a person can do is trust in, and follow after, the Lord. We might go a step further and say it is unreasonable not to do so.

Using a telescope to examine the vastness of the universe, or a microscope to uncover the intricate details of nature, it is unreasonable to conclude that such design could exist without a designer. Looking at the words of Christ and His impact upon humanity, it is unreasonable to conclude that He is anything but “other worldly”. Looking at the lives of those who have surrendered to Christ and been transformed by Him, it is unreasonable to conclude He will not do the same for you, if you surrender your life to Him. Looking at His love, mercy, grace and righteous acts, it is unreasonable to do anything short of offering yourself to Him, as a living sacrifice.

Romans 12:1
“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service.”

As you consider Christ, use your intellect, consider Him, His Words and His ways. Take the time today to look at the promises of Christ and determine to give your all to Him.

Pastor Jim