Monday, December 25, 2006

merry christmas from the byrds

merry christmas from the byrds

music is "utah" by the predictors

snow screen saver on my ibook

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

me and austin on the roof

the other monday i cleaned the gutters and then austin came up on the roof to help me hang the last of our Christmas lights. we now have colored lights on the roof, white lights in the bushes and along the walk, two white snowflakes hanging on either side of the door and a white light christmas tree out in the yard.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

visit to the national christmas tree

here we are at the national christmas tree across the river in washington dc.
its located on the elipse in front of the white house.
we went on saturday the 9th

Friday, December 15, 2006

hebrews: the job of a priest

06 Hebrews

Hebrews 4.14 – 5.10

What was the job of the high priest in ancient Israel? Essentially he had two jobs. First he represented the people of Israel to the LORD. When the people had a concern or needed guidance they asked the high priest to consult the LORD on their behalf. The high priest stood between men and God. He stood before the LORD and represented the people. A prophet on the other hand represents the LORD to the people. The priest takes our message to the LORD and brings His answer back but a prophet brings us the message of the LORD and takes back our response.

The second job of the high priest was to offer gifts and sacrifices for sin. It was his job to make the yearly sin offering for the people. He was the only one who could go into the holy of holies and stand before the Mercy Seat on the Arch of the Covenant. Before he could make the offering of sin on behalf of the people he had to first make and offering for his own sin. His own sin made him unworthy to offer the sacrifice for sin. So he had to have a sacrifice for himself and then for the people. He did all this in the temple in Jerusalem and before that in the Tabernacle both were pale reflections of the True Temple.

The Lord Jesus Christ is our Great High Priest. His job is similar to the original high priest but with some significant changes.

First our Great High Priest has gone through the heavens. As the Great High Priest his does not go to a temple or tabernacle made with human hands out of the stuff of this world. Instead He goes to the True Temple to perform his priestly duties.

Our Great High Priest also make and offering for sin. Jesus Christ offers himself as that offering for sin. He doesn’t need to offer a sacrifice for his own sin because he was sinless. He was tempted in all the ways the human high priest were. He was tempted in all the ways we are today. Yet he was and is without sin. In spite of the fact that He is sinless because he faced temptation like us He is able to sympathize with our struggle against temptation. With Jesus as our Great High Priest a door has been opened for all the people of God to approach the throne seeking grace and mercy. No long is it just the high priest who enters the throne asking for grace and mercy on our behalf. Now we walk in ourselves with confidence.

Finally like the human high priest our Great High Priest represents us to the LORD. In these last days the Son being our representative has given us direct access to the Father. The Son, Father and Holy Spirit are one. Access to one is access to them all.

Neither of these high priest claimed the job for themselves instead they were appointed or called by the LORD. They are high priest because the LORD wants them too. Jesus is our Great High Priest by the desire of the LORD.

Hold on tight to the faith we profess. Jesus is our Great High Priests goes to the True Heavenly Temple. He offers a sacrifice for our forgiveness alone because He is without sin. Our Great High Priest sympathizes with us as we struggle with sin, because he has been tempted in every way. As our representative before the LORD he has opened the door for us to approach the throne of the LORD with confidence seeking grace and mercy.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

10 years and sad news

me and lisa with our 10 year anniversary cake
this weeks marks my 10th year as the youth minister at the church of Christ in falls church. Back in 1996 i had no idea that i would be here this long but God has blessed me and my family here.


sad news
on a sad note a homeless man that has been a regular at our food pantry was found dead on monday morning. a worker went to the laudry room at and apartment complex and found him there. the worker thought he was sleeping there and called the police. the police found that he was daed. they believe it was a murder.

we called him dave, his name was david r. feliz, and he was a lost soul who had made some really bad choices in his life, with drugs, alcohol and in his relationships. as far as i know he has no family in the area and was completely alone. from time to time he would disapear and then reapear clean shaven and clean from the time he spent in jail for some petty offense.
here are two stories about dave

String of Murders in Fairfax County (he is the first story in this clip)
String of 3 Slayings Startles Authorities (his story is near the bottom of the page)

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

the promise of rest

The Promise of Rest
Hebrews 3.7 – 4.13
Long ago the LORD promised the His people Rest. They were promised a true Sabbath Rest in the Promised Land. At the time they were slaves in Egypt toiling away with no rest. Slaves who were toiling away with no mercy. They had no hope. Then the LORD brought up a man to lead them out of slavery. With His mighty arm the LORD crushed the most powerful nation in the world at the time. With His mighty arm the LORD led His people out of slavery into the desert on their way to Rest. They were on their way to the True Rest the LORD had promised they would find in the Promise Land. At Mount Sinai His people agreed to the Covenant that would insure that they received rest. Shortly after this they arrived on the border and what should have one of the most glorious moments in human history is squandered. Spies, sent to explore the Promised Land, discovered it would be impossible to take. The LORD’s people hardened their hearts and rebelled against the LORD and rejected the Promised Land. In His anger the LORD sent them into the desert to wander until all those who had hardened their hearts were dead. He swore an oath that they would never enter the promised Sabbath Rest.

After witnessing the LORD’s mighty power crush the gods and power of Egypt. After walking thru the sea on dry land. After they received mercy for stumbling away with the golden calf. After accepting the promise of rest and the covenant with the LORD. They forget and squander it all. They would never enter the Promised Land. Instead they died out in the desert wandering with no rest and no land of their own.

What a bleak and depressing story! The LORD saved them from slavery and promised rest only to have them turn it down. They had a promise, more than that they had a covenant with the LORD and they walked away from it. But, the Promise of Sabbath rest is still out there (Hebrews 4.1). The Promise for True Sabbath Rest is for us. There is a promise to us as the LORD’s people thru the blood of His Son the Lord Jesus Christ.

The author of Hebrews reminds the readers that the Promise of rest is still out their and that this promise is now to us! But we must not be like those whom the LORD rescued from Egypt. We must not harden out hearts. We must not rebel. We must not be sinful. We must no have unbelieving hearts. If we do we will lose out on the promised Sabbath Rest the LORD has promised. (Hebrews 3.7 – 19)

We need to hold on tight. We need to have believing and faithful heart. We need to be obedient to the LORD. We need to walk in His ways. If the first Israelites lost out on the earthly rest that would have been found in the Promised Land what makes us think that if we are disobedient, hard hearted or unfaithful we will not lose our promised Sabbath Rest? The mercy of the LORD opened the way for us to this promise thru the blood of His Son. We need to hold on tight to that mercy and not lose hold of it. We don’t save ourselves but we can let go of our salvation if we have unbelieving, unfaithful and sinful hearts/lives.