Saturday, September 30, 2017

Amos 5 : 1-27 (Daily Bread of 30/9/2017)


Key verse 5 :4

Man has the right to live amongst his peers. However, since the beginning of time the strong oppress the weak and helpless. God judges the nation that does evil.

1.     Seek God and live (1-17) 

God’s judgement is concentrated on the sinful nation. There will be an earthquake and the Earth’s inhabitants will lie down on the Earth. The enemy will come and nine tenths of them will be Lille. Therefore what can we learn from this? Amos told them « Seek yee God and live ». The only route to have life is to seek and find God. Israel’s amalgamated religion is horrible before God. God wants them to be purified and He wants them to believe in Him. Seeking God means fearing God (6b). Fearing God means not doing what’s evil but what’s good (14,15).God is the souvereign Creator who controls how the stars move and He changes darkness into light. The Israelites oppressed the just and the poor without reason and they behaved as though God was does not exist. They will be correctly judged. When we act justly we are reassured that God is with us and He will give us the victory. Due to their multiple crimes, the Israelites will be in constant lamentation. 

2. The day of the Lord (18-27)

As in the days of Joel, the Lord’s Day is one of divine judgement. It's the day of darkness wherein the wicked will receive the salary of their acts. They are like a man who escapes the lion but who falls upon a bear that strikes him or a snake that bites him. Israel’s real problem is their false beliefs. Inspite of their appearance, they are not actually believers but they are those who adore the golden cow as another element to their religion. They were therefore used to bringing many animals before God as their sacrificial offering but this was a useless act as their heart was not really in it. God asks His people if they are not fed up with bringing Him offerings that are useless just as those that they used to bring Him in the desert. God wants these offerings to be removed from before Him. That which is important to His people is mentioned in verse 24. The law has to flows like water and righteousness like a never-drying river.

Friday, September 29, 2017

Amos 4:1-13 (Daily bread of 29/09/17)

key verse: 6b


After an apostrophe about the women of Samaria, Amos makes an indictment against the non-conformist worship. Then, he emphasizes the tenacious impenitence of Israel and he defies Israel for a last face to face with God.

1. The sins of the people and the religious leaders (1-5)

First, the wealthy women. They encourage the people to commit carnal sin. The holy Eternal God swears that he will punish the country, deporting the women and their children. The most serious sin is that they give a deviated woship to God, because of their formalism it's only a compromise. They observe rites but which are deprived of moral sense which can please God. They venerated God each day, the rigorous people offered the tithe every three days and the legal tithe at least every three years. But in the sight of God, what is the point of this excess zeal if they join it a life of sin ? This reproach is comparable to that of Jesus towards the Jews (Mt 23:23). They loved the outer shapes, but they were not engaged (5).

2. Despite this... because of this... (6-13)

God made all things, in particular he sent lot of suffering to convert his people. But all his hits were unsuccessful. The first wound is famine, the second wound is the lack of rain, then the thirst. The fourth and fifth wounds are the desease of wheat and the burning of coal. The sixth is plague. The seventh is the war and the strangled young people. The last is earthquake. But all this suffering was useless in making the heart of the people come back. Because of their persevering hardness (12, 13), they must prepare for facing God one day. God is the Creator which changes the aurora to darkness. He can operate the most unexpected, he can suddently send a calamity instead of the expected prosperity. No obstacle can prevent God from going according to his way or execute his plans. God is a formidable judge who will hold accoutable of all the violated laws and despised mercies. Who can stand up to God ?

Amos 3 : 1-15 (Daily Bread of 28/9/2017)


Key verse 3 :2

The second part of this book comprises chapters 3-6 that all start with the words « listen to this Word ». Each one of these parts containing the summary of one of Amos' evangelic messages probably concerning Bethel.

1. No one can stay calm when the lion roars (1-8)

In the first instance Amos tasks about the particularities bond that God shares with His people (1-2). The more kind God was towards His people, the more their situation got worse in light of their multiple sins. Then Amos spoke about the different examples that showed that the calamities that they had to pass through were not accidental but coming from God. The prophets had already been taught to acknowledge that (7). There are seven long illustrations which show us that there «  everything happens for a reason » (in the case wherein the judgement is the effect, then sin is the reason). However, given that the last reason does not fit in well with the others, it would be more to say that « every action has a consequence ».

2. Come see what the Samaritans have done (9-15)

Amos invited the people of other foreign nations to come take a look at the evil things that the Samaritans did (9-10).Members of the noble class were especially invited to see the generated state of their Isralien homologues. After that Amos declared the punishment that would fall upon Israel (11-15). Amos' description of the shepherd is very shocking. He describes the end result of God's judgement as the mutilated lamb that the shepherd managed to rescue from the lion. The withholders of power in Samaria live very comfortable lives with beds that are actually extremely comfortable sofas. God's judgement will also fall upon the sanctuary at Bethel wherein the horns were thought to be symbolic of God's saving grace. With the Assyrian invasion these horns will be broken. The winter house and the ivory palaces, which were symbols of luxury that housed the bourgeoisie and the princes respectively, will all be reduced to ruins (15). The prophet reproaches them for the violence that they practised here as opposed to the existence of such houses. 

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Amos 2:1-16 (daily bread of 27/09/2017)

Key verse: 6


The judgment of the nations continues. The cousin people Moab and the brother people Juda are under the judgment. Then, Amos speaks about God's judgment for Israel. God hasn't any personal consideration. But we must note the criterion: for the Pagans and the cousins the criterion of judgment is their attitude towards Israel, whereas for Israel the criterion is the personal relationship with God.

1. The judgments on Moab and Judah (1-5)
Moab is the cousin people of Israel, the other descendant of Loth. But there was a fratricidal conflict with Edom, and he burnt the bones of the king, not by incineration but damaging the dignity of the human creature. Therefore God will send fire. The powerful will be killed. Then, God will judge Judah because he rejected the Eternal God's law. The judgment of Judah made Israel shudder because of God's judgment for them as severe as for other people.

2. The judgment of Israel (6-15)
The problem of Israel is greed. They sell the poor and righteous people to obtain a little material thing which has no value. They agreed with idolatry, their lifestyle is very carnal and randy. They are heinous because the father and the son have the same mistress. God will judge them. But God judges Israel differently than the other people, even Judah. God remember his favour towards Israel throughout history. In spite of the gentle appearance, this reminder aims to bring Israel's double guilt out. God speaks about their aggravating circumstance: his particular and enormous mercy for Israel. God made them get out of Egypt by his mighty hand. God made them victorious on the invincible races like the Amalekites with a formidable power (9). Not only that, but God blessed them sending prophets and generating dedicated people, but Israel treated them jumble as they see fit. They seducted the people to not leave a holy life and prevented the prophet to prophesy. Amos describes the judgment which can be understood through the terrible phenomenon of earthquake (cf. 1:1b): the earth crack like under a cart heavily charged; everybody tries to escape, but to not avail.

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Amos 1 : 1-15 (Daily Bread of 26/9/2017)



Amos, shepherd of Juda, called himself a worker and He went to Israel as a prophet. He has a very background and he is a very courageous servant of God to Bethel who preached against Israel 's idolatry of the golden cow. He gave his life for this mission. Surely he will return home afterwards. He uses a lot of popular sayings and field derived imagery. In the days of King Ozais in Juda and Jeroboam II in Israel, bothering countries had a very great prosperity. However, they gave themselves over to corruption especially the Israelites who adored the golden cow believing it to be the only true service for God. God gathered quite a bit of hate in His head due to this. The Book of Amos comprises 9 chapters that can be divided into three parts : Introduction (1-3), Israel's accusation by its neighbours (3-6), Visions of ruins and of the reconstruction of the Kingdom (7-9)

God roars from within Zion

Key verse 1 : 2

In the first two chapters, Amos writes about God's judgement on the countries surrounding Israel. After that he goes on to talking about the judgement that will fall upon Israel. God, He who judges these nations, ressembles a roaring lion. The result of his roars on the Earth is the country's complete and total devastation.

1. God's judgement on the Syrians, the Philistines and the Phenecians.    

They are just the neighbouring countries around Israel. Amongst the three parent countries (Edom, Amon and Moab) the Chapter deals with Edom and Amon at the end. Amos writes in this way in order to highlight the universiality of God's power and the fact that God's justice applies to all without any consideration based on someone's title. This jugement will first fall on the Syrians. The first verse of each sentence « 3-4 » refers to the fact that they keep on sinning and becoming more and more wicked. Syria mercilessly crushed Israel like a harrow ploughs the ground. Other meanings of the name of Damas are House of nothing and House of pleasure. Qir is where Georgia is nowadays. The Philistines comes thereafter and this group of people is based on the coming together of fire different peoples. The first one of which is Gaza. They were were responsible for carrying out a number of conquests on Juda and Israel which ended in the captivity of many Jets. These Jews were later sold to the Edomites and the Arabs. Then comes the Phenecians whose main city was Tyr and who sold the enslaved Jews into captivity under the Edomites.

2. Edom and Ammon (9-21)

The Edomites are Esau's descendants and so they are one of Israel's close relatives. However, history shows that they were one of the most persistent hostile countries towards the Israelites. God will judge them like one who is very irrated. The Ammonites are descendants of Loth so they are also one of Israel's relatives. The capital city of Ammon is Rabba (12). In order to decimate this people, there needs to be a war with a lot of violence and blood-shed. This event is similar to the hurricane Maria that passed through the Caribbean Islands this year (2017). At the end of this war, the King and his shall all be deported. This judgement will be carried out by the Assyrian Kings who will subjugate all of the islands in West Asia. Nowadays only the ruins of Rabba remain and they are called Amman. This is the abbreviation of Rabbath-Ammon (Dt 3v11).

Monday, September 25, 2017

Joel 4:1-21 (Daily bread of 25/09/2017)

key verse: 2b


God's judgment falls on the nations. It's the remuneration for all the calamities caused by the nations to Israel. God is living, acting his justice throughout history. 

1. I will gather all the nations (1-8)
The sending of Holy Spirit prepares the supreme expression of his opponent's hate. For now, God make the captives of Judah and Jerusalem come. They were prisoners and sold to remoted people by the Phoenicians, the Philistines, the Edomites. They must heave so that the opponents be defeated, so God make them go down and conduct a siege. They think that they spontaneously act but they are wrong, they only accomplish the secret God's will. They act like foolishs selling the Israelites at the price of a slave. But now the Eternal God's day will come and they will be revenged by the Israelites. The valley of Jehoshaphat is ambiguous and considered as the valley of Kidron, east of Jerusalem. The name of Jehoshaphat means God judges. 

2. The Eternal God will remain in Zion (9-21)
The Eternal God convenes himself all the nations to the final war against his people so that judge them together (9). Their famers make their instruments become ploughing weapons of war. The prophet instantly invokes God so that the celestial army be sent (11b). The enemies are compared to a ripe harvest to mow, to a tank full of grapes to crush. God gives a verdict between those who take sides for or against him. The nature itself ties to this solemn act (15). God's people will profit material and temporal blessing (18). A source will flow from God's house like the river of Ezekiel 47. It's the emblem of the spiritual blessing which will spread over the faithful. The part the most arid of Israel will be fertilized while Egypt very watered will be deprived of his fertility and of Edom's pastures (19). It's because of the wicked treatment of Judas' sons. The world ennemi of God depicted by Edom and Egypt will be desolated (19). The Eternal God will purify by the eternal judgment and he will live among his people (21; Ap 21:3)

Joel 3 : 1-5 (Daily Bread of 23/9/2017)


Key verse 3 : 2

When the priest prays whilst standing between the door and the altar and once his heart is sincerely broken because of his sins, God will get ready to work. Many try to do a lot of things save one : pray. Before the match the boxers take off their clothes. If one does not repent and confess his sins to get rid of his large burden of sin, he cannot hope to win the victory. God has already give Israel its fruits but there is still a blessing to be had.

1. I will put my Spirit on them (1-3)

Therefore after this, the repentance of the people and their prayer under the priest’s guidance, God will give them a spiritual blessing. They first received a material blessing but God will give them a spiritual one whose value is incommensurate to the material one. Thus, God says that He will pour out His Spirit on everyone. The human body is ephemeral (1P 1:24) but when God’s Spirit touches it, it will no longer undergo decomposition but it will be by a living hope in God’s kingdom (1P1 :3,4). When the Spirit come miracles come with it. Young people have visions and prophetise whilst old people have dreams. It is impossible to imagine a servant (enslaved) have a vision or a dream given that their only hope is to have three meals per day. However, God says that they too will receive the Holy Spirit and visions. Nowadays there are many who have dreams of living like the bourgeois. However, when the Holy Spirit falls upon them their eyes widely open and they try big things. This vision of life is similar to that of William Carey who was an English missionnary in India. When the Holy Spirit falls upon us we can have a great vision of the evangelisation of France far beyond the unsurmontable reality. God will do so many miracles of conversion that we will be unable to count them.

2. The Lord's Day, a most frightening reality (4-5)

When the Holy Spirit is poured on God's people, one needs to realise that the end is near. For this reason God sends calamities that hail the coming of His judgement so that the hearts of men will be ready. The Sun and the Moon shall become darkened and the Earth void of light. God's judgement is only for the unbelievers as the believers will not be judged as they have already gone from death to life (Jn 5 :24). God's will is to save His people from judgement and to save them (5). After Jesus' ascension into heaven, the disciples came together in the upper chamber and prayed. They therefore denied their inner fear. Thus the Holy Spirit fell upon them. In the same way Joel previously said « reunite the people to form a holy assembly » The Holy Spirit therefore fell upon them. If we look carefully at verse 5 we will notice that God's call is the basis on which we are saved. Whosoever calls upon God's name superstitiously without having received His call will not survive His jugement.

Friday, September 22, 2017

Joel 2 : 1-17 (Daily Bread of 21/9/2017)


Key verse 2 : 12
Joel's call for repentance continues. As he witnessed the devastation of the Earth by the grasshoppers (sauterelles) Joel warns the people that the Lord's Day is approaching.

1. God's big army (1-14)
God says to Sonnez du cor. This is the priest's role and he does this to announce the coming of the Lord. This glorious moment hails hope, victory and salvation (Am 5 : 18). However, Joel forwarns his people that should they not repent of their ways, it will be their judgement day. Joel describes this day in Great detail explaining that it starts with the invasion of the sauterelles. It will be a day of absolute darkness and one with an overcast sky. The Earth that was once like Eden will change into a desert Land and this will be due to the sauterelles. These sauterelles have heads similar to those which horses have. The sound they make when marching is similar to that of chariots. The insects run like soldiers that climb a wall in rank and file as they prepare for war. Faced with the silmultaneous changes in weather and in nature, the people tremble with fear. This description, often considered as a part of Joel’s exageration, is only used to help his people to repent. No one can withstand the great Day of Judgement.

2. Come back to me (12-17)
After having showed the Israelites the great and terrible judgement that shall fall upon them should they not repent, He reassures them that it's not too late to come back to Him. He promises them that should they return they will avoid this calamity. However, God does not a formalistic type of penitence but a real one coming from the heart (12,13). We must not mourn in appearance but mourn deep down in our hearts. For God is good, merciful and slow to anger but He also knows the heart of every single one of us. If our heart is really sincere God will come and restore us. The priest plays a very important role in this process as it is they who consecrates themselves to God and offer him prayers of intercession whilst crying (17). It is they who declare a fast for everyone including the babies in the community (16). Even though God’s anger is impetuous it will dissipate due to Israelites's penitence.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Joel 1:1-20 (Daily bread of 20/09/2017)

Introduction of Joel's book
Joel is the prophet of Judah who speaks about the temple,  Jerusalem and Judah. He is a contemporary of Obadiah, before Jeremiah and Isaiah. He worked by 870 when the king Jehoash reigned over Judah, after the rescue of his uncle Jehoiada​ against the conspiracy of Athaliah who wanted establish the worship of Baal. He speaks about the calamities of grasshopers and famines, and interpretes it as God's will against Judah. The goal is that Israel be stripped of all and invited to turning to God beg him. The counting is the condition of his salvation. The book prophetically announces that one day this presence will be given to all people, because God will spread his spirit over all people, like the day of Pentecost (3 :1-2 ; Ac 2 :16-21)
Key verse: 1:15
​Joel's book begins with the calamity of grasshopers. Their power of destruction is formidable. Because they destroy those in its path. Joel says that this calamity announces the day of the Eternal God.
1. Invasion of insects (1-12)
Joel particularly addresses to the high priest, not to political class. It seems that in this time, the priestly power was leading, because the fate of the people depends on them. If they are corrupted, God, who haven't any individual consideration, will severely judge them. God is huddled before the door with formidable calamities. First, the grasshopers will come to ravage the fields. After their passage nothing will remain. The insects are like a nation of an army which invade the country (5). The high priests have nothing to offer because the fields are ransacked. There are not wine nor oil nor wheat, because there isn't harvest. 
 They are in tears. When this phenomenon happens the people must repent. First, the high priest must mourn because of their role, and they must proclaim fast to all the people, and must call for God's help in his house.
2. The day of the Eternal God (13-20)
This word "the day of the Eternal God" is used by Joel and Amos and it means the crisis which ends each period of the history or which ends the existence of each people (in a relative sense). This word also means the final crisis who ends the development of mankind on earth (in an absolute sense). God successively judges all that spreak out against him throughout history; but there are only partial and provisional judgments which announce the divine act when he will slaughter all which is high and he will elevate all which is oppressed. Joel see this day approaches, there will be the final jugdment of this people. In his opinion, the invasion of grasshopers announces it. There is the same phenomenon for the return of Christ. Before his second coming there will be a great calamity. As on longer-term, before the formidable judgment of fire and flame, Joel kneels and cries towards the heaven (19,20)

Hosea 14 : 1-10 (Daily Bread of 19/9/2017)


Key verse 14 : 3

We often say that one has more hate towards the traitor than the enemy. However, in according to the principal theme of the Book of Hosea, God is not man. His love will never die. Let's learn more about this love in this last chapter, we who are only mortal human beings.

1. Come back to God (1-4)

Sin the fall, man has always tried to accuse God for his pain and suffering. However, the Bible clearly explains to us that it's man's fault and not God's (2). Hosea shows the sort of love that God holds in His heart for His people. God's love is generous.  That means that God would say « I don't need to force myself to love you. » It is extremely difficult and disgusting to love an idolater as Hosea did in chapters 1-3 wherein he took this degenerated woman by obligation an with distaste. Therefore God forced himself to love them. However, now God loves them willingly because they have returned to Him. Hosea commands them to repent for their sins (3). Repentance means acknowledging the sins that we have committed in the past. The Israelites had to therefore acknowledge that their idols were all man made and not divine. Thereafter they had to express their love for God by saying « Forgive us ours sins, we want to give you the praise from the bottom of our hearts rather than worthless sacrifices. »

 2. I shall answer their prayers (5-10)

Now that God’s people are penitent, God promises them His forgiveness, prosperity and holiness. After the promise of healing that God gave them in the previous verse (4) God will answer favorably to all that they seek. Moreover their cursed condition will be transformed into one that is blessed. They will become like the dew in fields, flowers in blossom the cedar tree in Liban with its abundant branches, the olive tree, the leefy cyprus tree and the fine wine in the country. They shall be protected as God's eyes will constantly follow them. In this epilogue Hosea encourages his people to accept this prophetic Word with intelligence and wisdom. Wisdom goes hand in hand with humility. If we are humble enough we will be able to see the spiritual reality of our nature and the blessing that God sets apart for those who are penitent. However, if we harden our hearts we shall fall like the wicked ones.

Monday, September 18, 2017

Hosea 13: 1-15 (Daily Bread of 18/09/2017)

Key verse: 14
God gives a death threat to Israel because of his idolatry. Hosea doesn't abandon his hope of Israel's restoration. He knows that it's God's hope to Israel, which doesn't wither while his people be infidel. God cans save his people from death, but provided that...
 1. You will be without value (1-8)
Once, Ephraim was an object of fear among the peoples. Now he is an object of mockery without value before them, because they are idolatrous, not more valuable than their handmade works. Their existence is compared with the morning cloud, the dew which passes early away, the chaff, and the smoke coming out of the chimney, all are ephemeral. In the past God was very friendly and favorable towards his people, he was a "shepherd" in the desert (5), but nos God appears as an enemy. All of a sudden he becomes as a devouring lion, as a tearing bear. The fundamental cause of this woe is indicated at verse 6: pride. As soon as the people were in the pastures, they felt their hunger was satisfied, and when they were full, they were puffed up (VF).
2. O Death, where is your sting ? (9-15)
Verse 14 is one of the most hardly decipherable verses. But the meaning the most likely is that God is Almighty to save Israel from death. But he can't exercise his power if the people doesn't repent, that's why he says: "clemency conceales from my eyes". There is in God so much power of life that he can be for death what plague is for mankind, he can be for sepulchre what sepulchre is for our bodies: he can kill death as death kills us, he can swallow the sepulchre as the sepulchre swallow us. God prepares himself to exercise his power when Israel will be penitent. Similarly, for each person who repents. In the context of the Corinthians, Paul says that when the moral conditions of resurrection will be met, that means conversion and faith, God certainly will operate it (1 Co 15:55). Verse 14 can be translated like: "You would like I redeem you while you refuse to repent, it's not possible." What doesn't prevent that there is a hope, but after the consumed punishment... 

Friday, September 15, 2017

Hosea 11: 1-11 (Daily Bread of 15/09/2017)

Key verse: 8
God treats Israel with gentleness but the second captivity will come, more difficult than the first captivity in Egypt (1-7). But after this threat God gives his promise of raising them up. God's love will abound more than the infidelity of his people, because God's gifts are irrevocable; It's true that the exile is imminent, but Israel will come back (8-11).
1. He didn't recognize (1-7)
God loved Israel. He considered him as his firstborn son. From his youth, he loved him and took care of him. God's affection towards Israel was unimaginable. He was like a father who carries his little child, cheek to cheek. Then, he nourished him like a father. Then he healed him like a doctor, because the people were infected with Egyptian idolatry. But Israel didn't recognize this love, he turned his back on God to move towards the idols and worship them. Israel had a policy of coalescence with the powerful, but they abused him and they invaded his territory.
2. God's true heart (8-11)
The consequence of Israel's sins is the invasion and the havoc of the country by the enemy. It was a punishment worthy of his treason. But it wasn't what God wanted. What God wanted was to bless his people. God had never any idea of destroying Israel. But they are responsible for that, not God. God is always loving, not punitive. Israel's God is the holy God. He is full of mercy towards the people, though they are terrible sinners. If God wants to juge, none can remain on the earth. But God judges and punishes not like humans without mercy, but with love. Israel is indestructible because there is a "holy". This applies to the Church who will not perish. Thank you Lord, in spite of our unforgivable sins, God didn't destroy us but you cared for us because of your great mercy. The Lord roars like a lion who gathers his little ones. When they listen to his voice, the children run toward him like the doves who split through air to come back to their dovecote.

Hosea 10 : 1-15 (Daily Bread of 14/9/2017)

Key verse 10 :12
Inspite of the unfortunate fate that the people will have to face, God does not forget to show His real heart towards them. However, to His great deceit the people's heart changes when in a situation wherein they are blessed.
1. Religion and loyalty come to an end (1-8)
Headstones , or sacred stones are forbidden (Dt 16 :22). However, they keep on multiplying. God therefore destroys the altars. Everything linked to the idols grows more and more as the country become more and more prosperous. The Israelites become anarchical, as they don't want to crown a King given that they want to be able to do what they want and they swear as if the law has no more value than a leaf. The people are sad as if it were at a funeral as each season changes as the common belief was that Baal died and rose up from the dead with the changing of the seasons. Similar to this, they will also be in mourning when the golden cow is taken to Assyria.
2. The Israelites will reap what they sowed (9-15).

Ever since the Guiboa affair (Juges 19-21 when a Benjaminite punished his wife by cutting her into pieces), Israel has turned away from God. It remains in the same. However, God always comes to correct the Israelites and He uses the other nations to do so. Why has Israel generated so much ? In the beginning it was a genius who used to work very hard. It's neck was hard so God made Juda do some labour while Israel plough the ground. God used a parabole to give them these instructions « Sow righteousness…and prepare a new field »The time of righteousness is given to them. They have to prepare a new field even though this takes a lot of time. God blesses those who work diligently by giving them a lot of fruit. However, the Israelites eyes were blinded and thus unable to see this blessing. They are myopic in this regard and they continue to do what is evil before God. God judges them therefore and sends the devastating enemy. In the beginning they will try to count on their chariots and soldiers. However, they will be severely beaten because they have turned away from God. Now they need to go back to Him (12). As God’s people the real secret to their victory is to return to God with all their heart. 

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Hosea 9: 1-17 (Daily Bread of 11/09/2017)

Key verse: 17
The prophet predicts that the people will be taken away by the enemy. They will go to another country in exile, like Israel in Egypt in the past. This occurs due to the sin of Israel.
1. The day of the settling account will come (1-9)
Although God wishes woe to Israel, they still benefit from material abondance, but that isn't going to remain for long. The exile will happen soon. All the blessing moves to the enemy. The reason is indicated in verse 1: "you have been runing from your God". In the country of exile they will eat, not a baguette, but the bread of mourners. They must cry whenever they eat because they are deprived of the system of worship, they can't worship God nor their idols (4). A material life focused on feeding is only an animal life. There will be the day of the settling accounts, though God be patient. The country is devastated because of their wickedness in kill ing the prophets and hating God. God never forgets their wickedness.
2. They are out of luck (10-17)
In the past Ephraim was glorious, but now he is cursed because he didn't love God, but idols. God loved their foregathers as the first ever fig, but in Bat-Peor they worshiped Baal. They gave their heart to this Canaanite divinity. In spite of God's prohibition, an Israelite people took a Moabitess woman to bed her. Israel imitated its forefathers. Baal is the divinity of fertility. God removes his blessing as the flight of the sparrows, through the enemy (13) of famine (16). Ephraim is sick like an outbreaked of an disease plant from his head to foot. God says that he will stop loving them (15b). It's very grave when an husband stop loving his wife. Ephraim will be like a repudiated woman. So God outs them from his territory. if we love another in place of God, God is very disappointed and he doesn't love us, because the idol that we make enter in our heart remains in us in his place. Our body is God's temple which is sanctified by Jesus' blood. So we must cleanly keep it. All this calamity happens because of the rebellion of the Israelites who don't listen God and his word. That's why we must learn and obey his word (17). 

Hosea 8 : 1-14 (Daily Bread of 12/09/2017)


Key verse 8 : 5
This particular punishment is due to the following sins : abandoning the House of David and the service made to the cow of Bethel (1-7), the alliances with the pagans and the trust placed in Israel’s numerous altars and palaces (8-14). However, God stills remains a compassionate shepherd (5).

1. Due to their infringement of my alliance (1-7)
The enemy will war against them because they have broken God's law. The prophet sees God's judgement hovering over Israel like an eagle. The mention of the House of God in the first verse refers to Bethel or to the country in which God dwells. However, the people have abandoned both God and the temple. When judgement day arrives they will revendicate their identity as God's people but this will be in vain. They crown Kings without against God's advice so they do this according to their will. Moreover when Israel misuses the material blessing that God gave them, He takes it away from them (4). Israel rejects that which is just and right and so God rejects Israel. In this context to reject means to dislike. Therefore the time when God will declare them innocent, shall it never come about ? This is one of the reasons that God sighs heavily in His chest inspite of His reproaches. He wants them to be to saved more than they do (5).

2. The alliances with the pagans (8-14)
The pagan alliances will give rise to nothing more that a situation of captivity similar to that which the Israelites have already experienced in Egpyt. Their altars, the palaces in which they placed their trust and their fortresses will be unable to help them. Israel is being devoured by the tributes that they have to pay. However, Assyria makes of fun of them inspite of this condition. The Israelites are similar to wild donkeys ; lonely, unwilling to live with other people and destined to live as undisciplined and abandoned people. Their altars have become a place for sin to propagate itself, noteably with the chaos that goes on during their services (11). Writing the Law doesn't is useless as their hearts are so far away from God. They celebrate feasts with lots of meat but not to make God happy but rather to enjoy themselves. God is therefore horrified by their offerings. After their return to Egypt they will forget their past and choose to be a submissive people. The Israelites have abandoned God and seek their happiness in big buildings but they too will be destroyed. 

Monday, September 11, 2017

Hosea 7: 1-16 (Daily Bread of 11/09/2017)

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Hosea 6 : 1-11 (Daily Bread of 9/9/2017)


Key verse 6 : 6

God's judgement is clear. He will not heal them because they try to find Him with their human methods but not as God would have them. Mankind has many false hopes because of their illusions. Knowing the one true and living God is very important (John 17 :3). 
1.  Their hopes are illusory (1-3)

By looking at the words in verses 1-3 there seems to be a lingering hope in the coming about of God's promise in 5 :15. However, God's answer in verses 4-10 (in the second part of this Chapter) is contrary to these words. By His answer God rejects the mouvement of faith that the people seek to express. Inspite of the apparently pious language, we need to carefully analyse their words and note that the people make no mention of their sins. They do not humbly acknowledge their sins. Instead they attempt to rebuild their hope and courage by giving themselves the hope that God will restore them after their political defeat. They believe that God cannot refuse them this wish. For this very same reason God refuses to accept this apparent return as it is not based on their sincere humiliation before God. We are often inclined to honour God this way hoping that He will fix the bad things in our lifes. In verses 1-3 the Israelites try to mutual encourage themselves to come back to God who is good and strong and who will heal he who He strikes. However, this sort of hope is very foreign to the reverent attitude needed when approaching or contemplating God's holiness. In these three verses the people hope in being delivered from the punishment that they are undergoing and not from their sin.

2 God's answer (4-11)

In summary God's answer to this apparent revival shows that He does not believe in it much. This is because Israel only speaks about its suffering but not about its sins. Their vain words just their current emotional condition which is ephemeral. God uses their own words « we will have the morning dew and then a lot of rain » to telle them that their love is like a vapor that will soon evaporate. Trust can only be measured once preceeded by one’s humiliation. Israel thus needs to undergo this punishment It is by acknowledging that God's love is sacrificial that love and loyalty spring forth in us (Rm 12 :2).

Friday, September 8, 2017

France is the country who is the origine of liberty of conscience, since persecuted protestant church in 16th century struggled for that. The new protestant organization named CNEF (National Council of Evangelicals in France) submitted recently to United Nations his recommandations for this topic. Two recommandations are saillant: one is the insertion of the clause of the liberty of conscience for the elected representatives in their célébration of mariage for same sexe and the abortion. Another is the liberty of conscience in the affaire of expression in public places, in the context of "laïcité" (separation between church and state) very particulier to France. Then what is the concept of the liberty of conscience? It depends really nowadays on the interpretation. Don't we know that in the Noah's day, the conscience of men wasn't something to rely on. It was so corrupted, that men were blind to their mentality. Yet, does-it seem that God's economy is different between before and after Noah? However, to my point of view, it's certain that the contemporary peuple rely too much on the conscience. It's very strange to find that in Roman chapters 1& 2 (generally on the same page in the Bible), where Paul told about the conscience, engraved law in the heart, he describes also the reprobation of God on the passion against nature on the sex relations.

Hosea 5 : 1-5 (Daily Bread of 08/09/2017)

Key verse: 6
God's charge against Israel continues. The sins of Israel are their idolatry and their double life.  God will judge Israel and also the neighbouring country. But God has hope. 
1. I know Israel (1-7)
The arrow of God's condemnation turns to the noble and priestly class. They are the leaders and those who are responsible for the sheep of the nation. But they neglect their responsibility and they leave as they please. Even if they work good deeds it's only dead works (Heb 9:14) which can't help their salvation. So, because of their hypocrisy with their spirit contaminated with adultery, there is no room for divine knowledge, destroying it. Hosea speaks about Judah, even if he is the prophet of northern Israel. The influence of the brother nation will be great. God will judge both. At any rate, there is no reason to their sacrifices, because it represents only their soiling because of their double heart. They may seek the Lord's face, but God has departed from them (6). We must seek God with all our heart, because this is the only way we can find God (Jr 29:13).
2. He will not help you (8-15)
A judgment is exercised against the kingdom of Ephraim through Judah; then, both will fall by the pagan enemy. The invasion is not from the north but from the south, according to the localities of verse 8. There also will be looting and murder (9,14). They establish their own regulation and laws contrary to God's command. The same applies today with for example the permission of work on Sunday. God degrades himself to be a ringworm and rot for his people because they are soiled. Both are sick and seek to be healed by the pagan king of Assyria (Yared means revenge). Both have bought from him services in cash but this king doesn't profit them. No healing is predictable. He doesn't contribute anything to them, maybe because of his trick, but the true reason is because the Eternal God has decided to punish them and none can divert the execution of his will ! But it's not to completely destroy them but so they repent and come back to him (15).

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Hosea 4 : 1-19 (Daily Bread of 7/9/2017)


Key verse 4 :6
God calls for a case against His people. The words : ignorance, wasting away , ignominy and prostitution are frequently repeated in this text. This reveals the spiritual condition of His people. Nowadays the World is turning 100 times faster that it did a century ago. However, its inhabitants are not as wise as those who were around a century ago. Where is our World going ?
1.   They will perish as they lack understanding (1-10). Israel gives itself over to prostitution and it rallies itself with idols that have no value before God. The Israelites offer quite a number of sacrifices and the appoint a number of priests but in reality they give their real devotion to the idols on the mountain tops. Given their compromised lifestyle, Bethel (The House of the Lord) has become Beth Haven (The House of nothing) (15). The country is filled with wickedness and violence. Their morality is so degraded that one cannot even find someone who is faithful and loyal. Everbody each other and curse each other. God pronounces His sentence upon them : they will all die. They forgot God's law and that's why they have become so ignorant. They however pretend to be wise and because of this they have become mad. They have remplaced God's infaillible glory with that of and beasts who are faillible creatures (Rm 1 :23) However, they still aren't satisfied. God's judgement will fall on them all at once (5,9).

2.      Their double life exposed (11-19)
Their lifestyle is luxurious, adulterous and excessive. The sons and the daughters have become corrupted due to their mothers' influence. From generation to generation they have become more and more corrupted. They seeks wisdom from trees and they speak to their walking sticks. Then during the festive periods they go into the sanctuary and offer sacrifices to God and they do this with they concubines (14). They carry these offerings to God in order to ease their consciences. However, God says that He will not work in their favour and thus their daughters and their step-daughters will all perish. They ought to be ashamed of these offerings as even though they are numerous they aren’t worth anything because of their double lifestyle. Their confession « God is alive » (15) is just a meaningless saying like « the good God loves us » that many say today. The most important thing before God is when we live according to His Word (Rm 12 :2). The prophet, knowing the destruction that sin produces, hopes that at least the nearby country Juda will be saved (15).