Rabbi’s Reflections – Monday, October 7, 2019 

Shalom *|FNAME|*,

How do we make decisions?  Many decisions are made through indecision.   

Rabbi Trail:  Making no decision is in effect a decision.  Matters are perhaps handled by others who do make decisions.  Sometimes time itself imposes decisions.  End RT.

There is also other decision making that bears a strong resemblance to Russian roulette.  You close your eyes and drop your Bible on the floor to see when it opens and go with that.  (Not recommended)  There is a prayer though for the Russian roulette style of decision making.  “Oh Lord, would you bless my mess.”  

Rabbi Trail:  It contains an internal rhyme which makes it funny.  If you didn’t laugh, please go to lost and found to reclaim your sense of humor.  End RT.  

Then there is the ubiquitous polling of good and trusted friends.  Proverbs 11:14 speaks to this… “Without guidance people fall, with many counselors there is deliverance.”  And so does Proverbs 15:22 “Plans fail when there is no counsel, but with many advisers they succeed.”  

At the mouth of 2 or 3 witnesses let every word be established.  (2 Corinthians 13:1) Need a 3rd witness?  Proverbs 24:6 For with wise advice you wage war and in many counselors there is victory. 

Friends are a very good source of wisdom, but not the best source.  If your friends learned to be friends at the “Job’s Friends School of Friendship,” you might find yourself wishing you had asked God for His answer to your dilemma.

Jacob 1:5 But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all without hesitation and without reproach; and it will be given to him.

Want to know how to ask God (and I speak from experience here)?  Ask and then get quiet.  Ask and wait.  The Lord can speak in a vision, a Rhema word or a Logos word.

In a vision, you will probably require an interpretation.  In a Rhema word, you may hear a voice speaking like Elijah (1 Kings 19:11-13) or you might be directed by God to a particular Scripture or section of Scripture.

One last word on receiving advice from God.  In every situation, be sure you seek and receive a confirming word (see the note on 2 Corinthians 13:1 above).  Many lives have been ruined by acting on wrongly interpreted information.  

Okay, one more, last last word.  When you are accountable in a congregational setting, there are those who pray for you and care about you.  Why not ask the leaders of your congregation to pray with you and seek wisdom from God?  It’s not necessary, but I did feel it was worthy of honorable mention here.  Shalom (again).
Week 41
Memory Verse: 1 Thessalonians 5:23 Now may the God of shalom Himself make you completely holy; and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept complete, blameless at the coming of our Lord Yeshua the Messiah.  24 Faithful is the One who calls you— and He will make it happen!

201   10/7    Monday:         1 Thessalonians 3-5

202   10/8    Tuesday:        2 Thessalonians 1-3

203   10/9    Wednesday:   Acts 18:18-19:41

204   10/10  Thursday:       1 Corinthians 1-2

205   10/11   Friday:           1 Corinthians 3-4

Question of the day:  What marching orders does Paul give us in 1 Thessalonians 5?

Answer:  Rav Shaul’s (Paul’s) first letter to the Thessalonians builds in intensity up to the dramatic conclusion in Chapter 5.  It ends by giving the Thessalonians, (and consequently us, since the letter was canonized) some marching orders.  What are they?  Let’s number them.  Turns out there are 14 marching orders.  We begin in 1 Thessalonians 5:14.

  1. Correct the unruly 
  2. Comfort the fainthearted
  3. Help the weak
  4. Be patient with everyone
  5. See that no one repays evil for evil to anyone
  6. Always pursue what is good for one another and for all.
  7. Rejoice always
  8. Pray constantly
  9. In everything give thanks
  10. Do not quench the Spirit,
  11. Do not despise prophetic messages,
  12. Test all things
  13. Hold fast to what is good
  14. Keep away from every kind of evil

Then Rav Shaul closes with this prayer for us…  and now it’s my prayer for you.

1 Thessalonians 5:23  Now may the God of shalom Himself make you completely holy; and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept complete, blameless at the coming of our Lord Yeshua the Messiah.

In Whose name we pray.  Amen.