LAMENTATIONS 4-5:In yesterday's reading, the sun pierced the dark clouds with this glorious section: Lam. 3:22 GNT The Lord's unfailing love and mercy still continue,23 [GNT Fresh as the morning, as sure as the sunrise.//NLT Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning.] 24 The Lord is all I have, and so in him I put my hope. 25 The Lord is good to everyone who trusts in him, I have only quoted the most famous part. There are many other precious verses there. PROVERBS 13a:Here is a favorite proverb from today’s reading: Some who are poor pretend to be rich;others who are rich pretend to be poor. Re-reading EPHESIANS 2:We have an important spiritual reality expressed in verse 6: Because we are joined as one with Christ, we are already seated with Him, reigning together with Him, in heaven. We don't wait to die to find out if we will get into heaven! We’re already there! In my speaking about this in Indonesia I often say, “We’re not sitting on plastic folding chairs in heaven.” Understanding and believing this spiritual reality should transform our prayers. Imagine how your spirit is seated with Christ right now, and pray from your heavenly position. GNT Translation notes:5:8 NLT [Slaves have now become our masters; there is no one left to rescue us.//Our rulers are no better than slaves, and no one can save us from their power.]15 Happiness has gone out of our lives; grief has taken the place of our [dancing//dances].====Eph. 2:2 At that time you followed the world's evil way; you obeyed the [commander of the powers in the unseen world (NLT)//ruler of the spiritual powers in space], the spirit who now controls the people who disobey God.6 In our union with Christ Jesus he raised us up with him [to sit beside him on his throne//to rule with him] in the heavenly world.8-9 For it is by God's grace that you have been saved through [believing//faith]. It is not the result of your own efforts, but God's gift, so that no one can boast about it.11 You Gentiles by birth—called “the uncircumcised” by the Jews, who call themselves the circumcised (which refers to [a physical ceremony performed upon the bodies of men//what men do to their bodies])—remember what you were in the past. NLT Translation notes:Eph. 2:6 For he raised us from the dead along with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms because we are [joined as one/united] with Christ Jesus. 7 So God can point to us in all future ages as examples of the incredible wealth of his grace and kindness toward us, as shown in all he has done for us who are [joined/united] with Christ Jesus.8 God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for [that/this]; it is a gift from God. 9Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it.10 For we are God’s masterpiece. [We who are joined with Christ Jesus have been like recreated,//He has created us anew in Christ Jesus,] so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.11 Don’t forget that you Gentiles used to be outsiders. You were called “uncircumcised heathens” by the Jews, who [are so/were] proud of their circumcision, even though it affected only their bodies and not their hearts. 13 But now you have been [jointed/united] with Christ Jesus. Once you were far away from God, but now you have been brought near to him through the blood of Christ.15 He did this by ending the system of law with its commandments and regulations. [PET: That means that everyone, from every people group— each of them being [joined/one] with Christ, are as if created to become a new people group, and a peaceful nation.//He made peace between Jews and Gentiles by creating in himself one new people from the two groups.] 21 [PET: When each of us becomes [joined as] one with Christ, the whole building is growing larger until it becomes a holy Temple for God.//We are carefully joined together in him, becoming a holy temple for the Lord.]
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