|“Nothing you ever do for God can act as a substitute for a life of obedience.” Walter A. Henrichsen (“Walt”)
“If God had perceived that our greatest need was economic, He would have sent an economist. If He had perceived that our greatest need was entertainment, He would have sent us a comedian or an artist. If God had perceived that our greatest need was political stability, He would have sent us a politician. If He had perceived that our greatest need was health, He would have sent us a doctor. But He perceived that our greatest need involved our sin, our alienation from Him, our profound rebellion, our death; and He sent us a Savior.” D A Carson (“Don Carson”)
Thoughts from the Diary of a Desperate Man by Walter A Henrichsen (“Walt”)
The Capetivity of Job
“And the Lord turned the captivity of Job, when he prayed for his friends.” Job 42:10
God did not turn the captivity of Job when he confessed “I abhor myself and repent in dust and ashes.”70 Rather God turned things around for Job when he prayed for his three friends. God put Job to the test.
Throughout the book, Job passionately argued that the “Law of the Harvest” 71 couldn’t be applied in the temporal. The three friends insisted that it did; Job was now reaping the results of a wicked life. In the end God vindicated Job, saying to the three friends, “My wrath is kindled against thee, and against thy two friends: for ye have not spoken of me the thing that is right, as my servant Job hath.” 72 Although God never revealed to Job why he suffered, He did affirm that Job was correct in his argument with his friends.
Now the test: will Job practice what he preaches? “Do you really believe the law of the harvest does not apply in the temporal? Demonstrate your conviction by praying for your friends.” For Job to intercede before God on behalf of these men, he must forgive them for their accusations. Forgiveness and intercession require the suspension of judgment. Job must show that he believes that there are no necessary temporal consequences for wrong by not seeking justice for what his friends did. Then God “turned the captivity of Job.”
You will discover that God will not let you loose until you are willing to practice what you say you believe. You cannot insist on one thing and practice the opposite. You came to Jesus because you needed His forgiveness. He will not allow you freedom until you intercede for those who have wronged you.
70 Job 42:6
71 cf. Galatians 6:7
72 Job 42:7
Leviticus 14 Matthew 26:51-75 (New King James Version)
The Ritual for Cleansing Healed Lepers
14 Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 2 “This shall be the law of the [a]leper for the day of his cleansing: He shall be brought to the priest. 3 And the priest shall go out of the camp, and the priest shall examine him;and indeed, if the [b]leprosy is healed in the leper, 4 then the priest shall command to take for him who is to be cleansed two living and clean birds, cedar wood, scarlet, and hyssop. 5 And the priest shall command that one of the birds be killed in an earthen vessel over running water. 6 As for the living bird, he shall take it, the cedar wood and the scarlet and the hyssop, and dip them and the living bird in the blood of the bird that was killed over the running water. 7 And he shall sprinkle it seven times on him who is to be cleansed from the leprosy, and shall pronounce him clean, and shall let the living bird loose in the open field. 8 He who is to be cleansed shall wash his clothes, shave off all his hair, and wash himself in water, that he may be clean. After that he shall come into the camp, and shall stay outside his tent seven days. 9 But on the seventh day he shall shave all the hair off his head and his beard and his eyebrows—all his hair he shall shave off. He shall wash his clothes and wash his body in water, and he shall be clean.
10 “And on the eighth day he shall take two male lambs without blemish, one ewe lamb of the first year without blemish, three-tenths of an ephah of fine flour mixed with oil as a grain offering, and one log of oil. 11 Then the priest who makes him clean shall present the man who is to be made clean, and those things, before the Lord, at the door of the tabernacle of meeting. 12 And the priest shall take one male lamb and offer it as a trespass offering, and the log of oil, and wave them as a wave offering before the Lord. 13 Then he shall kill the lamb in the place where he kills the sin offering and the burnt offering, in a holy place; for as the sin offering is the priest’s, so is the trespass offering. It is most holy. 14 The priest shall take some of the blood of the trespass offering, and the priest shall put it on the tip of the right ear of him who is to be cleansed, on the thumb of his right hand, and on the big toe of his right foot. 15 And the priest shall take someof the log of oil, and pour it into the palm of his own left hand. 16 Then the priest shall dip his right finger in the oil that is in his left hand, and shall sprinkle some of the oil with his finger seven times before the Lord. 17 And of the rest of the oil in his hand, the priest shall put some on the tip of the right ear of him who is to be cleansed, on the thumb of his right hand, and on the big toe of his right foot, on the blood of the trespass offering. 18 The rest of the oil that is in the priest’s hand he shall put on the head of him who is to be cleansed. So the priest shall make [c]atonement for him before the Lord.
19 “Then the priest shall offer the sin offering, and make atonement for him who is to be cleansed from his uncleanness. Afterward he shall kill the burnt offering. 20 And the priest shall offer the burnt offering and the grain offering on the altar. So the priest shall make atonement for him, and he shall be clean.
21 “But if he is poor and cannot afford it, then he shall take one male lamb as a trespass offering to be waved, to make atonement for him, [d]one-tenth of an ephah of fine flour mixed with oil as a grain offering, a log of oil, 22 and two turtledoves or two young pigeons, such as he is able to afford: one shall be a sin offering and the other a burnt offering. 23 He shall bring them to the priest on the eighth day for his cleansing, to the door of the tabernacle of meeting, before the Lord. 24 And the priest shall take the lamb of the trespass offering and the log of oil, and the priest shall wave them as a wave offering before the Lord. 25 Then he shall kill the lamb of the trespass offering, and the priest shall take some of the blood of the trespass offering and put it on the tip of the right ear of him who is to be cleansed, on the thumb of his right hand, and on the big toe of his right foot. 26 And the priest shall pour some of the oil into the palm of his own left hand. 27 Then the priest shall sprinkle with his right finger some of the oil that is in his left hand seven times before the Lord. 28 And the priest shall put some of the oil that is in his hand on the tip of the right ear of him who is to be cleansed, on the thumb of the right hand, and on the big toe of his right foot, on the place of the blood of the trespass offering. 29 The rest of the oil that is in the priest’s hand he shall put on the head of him who is to be cleansed, to make atonement for him before the Lord. 30 And he shall offer one of the turtledoves or young pigeons, such as he can afford— 31 such as he is able to afford, the one as a sin offering and the other as a burnt offering, with the grain offering. So the priest shall make atonement for him who is to be cleansed before the Lord. 32 This is the law for onewho had a leprous sore, who cannot afford the usual cleansing.”
The Law Concerning Leprous Houses
33 And the Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying: 34 “When you have come into the land of Canaan, which I give you as a possession, and I put the [e]leprous plague in a house in the land of your possession, 35 and he who owns the house comes and tells the priest, saying, ‘It seems to me that there is some plague in the house,’ 36 then the priest shall command that they empty the house, before the priest goes into it to examine the plague, that all that is in the house may not be made unclean; and afterward the priest shall go in to examine the house. 37 And he shall examine the plague; and indeed if the plague is on the walls of the house with ingrained streaks, greenish or reddish, which appear to be [f]deep in the wall, 38 then the priest shall go out of the house, to the door of the house, and [g]shut up the house seven days. 39 And the priest shall come again on the seventh day and look; and indeed if the plague has spread on the walls of the house, 40 then the priest shall command that they take away the stones in which is the plague, and they shall cast them into an unclean place outside the city. 41 And he shall cause the house to be scraped inside, all around, and the dust that they scrape off they shall pour out in an unclean place outside the city. 42 Then they shall take other stones and put them in the place of those stones, and he shall take other mortar and plaster the house.
43 “Now if the plague comes back and breaks out in the house, after he has taken away the stones, after he has scraped the house, and after it is plastered, 44 then the priest shall come and look; and indeed if the plague has spread in the house, it is an active leprosy in the house. It is unclean. 45 And he shall break down the house, its stones, its timber, and all the plaster of the house, and he shall carry them outside the city to an unclean place. 46 Moreover he who goes into the house at all while it is shut up shall be [h]unclean until evening. 47 And he who lies down in the house shall wash his clothes, and he who eats in the house shall wash his clothes.
48 “But if the priest comes in and examines it, and indeed the plague has not spread in the house after the house was plastered, then the priest shall pronounce the house clean, because the plague is healed. 49 And he shall take, to cleanse the house, two birds, cedar wood, scarlet, and hyssop. 50 Then he shall kill one of the birds in an earthen vessel over running water; 51 and he shall take the cedar wood, the hyssop, the scarlet, and the living bird, and dip them in the blood of the slain bird and in the running water, and sprinkle the house seven times. 52 And he shall [i]cleanse the house with the blood of the bird and the running water and the living bird, with the cedar wood, the hyssop, and the scarlet. 53 Then he shall let the living bird loose outside the city in the open field, and make atonement for the house, and it shall be clean.
54 “This is the law for any leprous sore and scale, 55 for the leprosy of a garment and of a house, 56 for a swelling and a scab and a bright spot, 57 to teach when it is unclean and when it is clean. This is the law of leprosy.”
51 And suddenly, one of those who were with Jesus stretched out his hand and drew his sword, struck the servant of the high priest, and cut off his ear.
52 But Jesus said to him, “Put your sword in its place, for all who take the sword will [a]perish by the sword. 53 Or do you think that I cannot now pray to My Father, and He will provide Me with more than twelve legions of angels? 54 How then could the Scriptures be fulfilled, that it must happen thus?”
55 In that hour Jesus said to the multitudes, “Have you come out, as against a robber, with swords and clubs to take Me? I sat daily with you, teaching in the temple, and you did not seize Me. 56 But all this was done that the Scriptures of the prophets might be fulfilled.”
Then all the disciples forsook Him and fled.
Jesus Faces the Sanhedrin
57 And those who had laid hold of Jesus led Him away to Caiaphas the high priest, where the scribes and the elders were assembled. 58 But Peter followed Him at a distance to the high priest’s courtyard. And he went in and sat with the servants to see the end.
59 Now the chief priests, [b]the elders, and all the council sought false testimony against Jesus to put Him to death, 60 [c]but found none. Even though many false witnesses came forward, they found none. But at last two [d]false witnesses came forward 61 and said, “This fellow said, ‘I am able to destroy the temple of God and to build it in three days.’ ”
62 And the high priest arose and said to Him, “Do You answer nothing? What is it these men testify against You?” 63 But Jesus kept silent. And the high priest answered and said to Him, “I put You under oath by the living God: Tell us if You are the Christ, the Son of God!”
64 Jesus said to him, “It is as you said. Nevertheless, I say to you, hereafter you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Power, and coming on the clouds of heaven.”
65 Then the high priest tore his clothes, saying, “He has spoken blasphemy! What further need do we have of witnesses? Look, now you have heard His blasphemy! 66 What do you think?”
They answered and said, “He is deserving of death.”
67 Then they spat in His face and beat Him; and others struck Him with [e]the palms of their hands, 68 saying, “Prophesy to us, Christ! Who is the one who struck You?”
Peter Denies Jesus, and Weeps Bitterly
69 Now Peter sat outside in the courtyard. And a servant girl came to him, saying, “You also were with Jesus of Galilee.”
70 But he denied it before them all, saying, “I do not know what you are saying.”
71 And when he had gone out to the gateway, another girl saw him and said to those who were there, “This fellow also was with Jesus of Nazareth.”
72 But again he denied with an oath, “I do not know the Man!”
73 And a little later those who stood by came up and said to Peter, “Surely you also are one of them, for your speech betrays you.”
74 Then he began to [f]curse and [g]swear, saying, “I do not know the Man!”
Immediately a rooster crowed. 75 And Peter remembered the word of Jesus who had said to him, “Before the rooster crows, you will deny Me three times.” So he went out and wept bitterly.
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