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2011.12.25 - Esther, Part 7

  • | Chris McCann
  • Audio: Length: 47:52 Size: 8.2 MB
  • A look at Esther 3:5-7.

Let us turn over to the book of Esther. We read in Esther 3:5-7:

And when Haman saw that Mordecai bowed not, nor did him reverence, then was Haman full of wrath. And he thought scorn to lay hands on Mordecai alone; for they had showed him the people of Mordecai: wherefore Haman sought to destroy all the Jews that were throughout the whole kingdom of Ahasuerus, even the people of Mordecai. In the first month, that is, the month Nisan, in the twelfth year of king Ahasuerus, they cast Pur, that is, the lot, before Haman from day to day, and from month to month, to the twelfth month, that is, the month Adar.

This is where we pretty much stopped last week with the whole idea of the lot. If you remember, we went to Daniel 12 and read the last verse of that chapter and of the book of Daniel. We read in Daniel 12:13:

But go thou thy way till the end be: for thou shalt rest, and stand in thy lot at the end of the days.

Twice in this verse, it mentions “the end.” God is speaking to Daniel to whom He had just given much end-time revelation. We know that God gave Daniel several visions concerning the end of the world. Then God told him to “go thou thy way till the end” and that at the end he would “stand in thy lot at the end of the days.”

We also noticed last time how this verse has three major tie-ins to Esther 9. In Esther 9:16, we read how the Jews “stood for their lives.” “Stand” in Daniel 12:13 is the same word as “stood” in Esther 9:16.

Also, after the Jews killed their enemies at the time of the 13th and the 14th day of Adar, they rested on the following day. The proclamation that the Jews were to kill their enemies was only for one day. It was the 13th day of the 12th month of Adar that the Jews were to kill their enemies, and they did; but then Esther went before the king and requested, “If it please the king, let it be granted to the Jews which are in Shushan to do to morrow also according unto this day's decree.”

So on the 14th day, they also slew their enemies, but only in Shushan. This was because there was no time. Esther had made the request on the 13th day and there was no time to send that message to the other 126 provinces of the kingdom.

This means that in all of the rest of the kingdom, in all of the kingdom, all 127 provinces, the enemies of the Jews were killed on the 13th day of Adar. Only in Shushan were they also slain on the 14th day.

The “rest” came the day after the enemies of the Jews were killed. This is why on the Feast of Purim, they rested on the 14th and the 15th. The Jews in Shushan could not rest on the 14th because they were still killing their enemies. It was two days of slaying: the 13th and the 14th. Then it was two days of resting: the 14th and 15th.

We mentioned this before, but this solves any kind of a problem as far as the world being on the Feast of Purim at the same time. When the Feast of Purim comes in March 2012 in Australia or whatever country in that part of the world enters into the first day of the 13th day of Adar or into the feast, we in America and in other places will not have entered into that day yet.

If you remember with May 21 and even with October 21, people were looking closely at what was happening in Australia or in New Zealand or places in that area. Nothing was happening, so the report came back to us that we had not entered into the day. That day came and went in Australia with no problem.

With the Feast of Purim, it is not going to be the case where one nation leaves the feast and then other nations enter in. This is because when Australia or New Zealand leaves the first day of the feast, they go to the second day when the rest of the nations enter into the first day. This means that all of the world would be on the Feast of Purim at the same time. There will be no difficulty of trying to fit the whole world into a 24-hour day because it is spread over a two-day period.

The Bible also indicates that, concerning this feast, it is alright for some to observe a different portion than the rest. This is because there was a different observance in Shushan than there would have been in the other 127 provinces. On the 14th day of the 126 provinces, they were resting; but not in Shushan. Shushan did not rest on that day. Shushan did not rest until the 15th day.

This is an interesting thing that God is describing. This is a feast that everyone will observe, but it would be observed at different periods and even during different portions of time. This really helps us to see how this feast would be unlike any other date, as far as everyone being on the same day.

So we saw that in Daniel 12:13, there were three similarities with Esther. It speaks of rest, when the Jews rested after killing their enemies. It also speaks of standing, as the Jews also stood for their lives. And it speaks of “in thy lot at the end of the days.”

Is this not unusual that God said this to Daniel? He told Daniel:

…for thou shalt rest, and stand in thy lot at the end of the days.

So God is linking Daniel. If we could point to anyone in the Bible and say that he was an end-time prophet, it would be him. Then God links him to standing and resting in his lot “at the end of the days.”

Of course, this also fits in with the Feast of Purim. What does “Pur” mean? We just read it. “Pur” is “lot.” When the Feast of Lot comes, it is a very strong tie-in that God is making between Purim and Daniel 12:13 when He uses three words that are found in one verse that relate to one chapter.

Do I dare say also what I mentioned last week, which is that Daniel 12:13 happens to be the date of the Feast of Purim? I said this a couple of times last week, but the chapters and verses are not inspired. They are not inspired, but there are all sorts of things that go on in our lives that are not inspired.

I do not think that anything is inspired that goes on in our lives. But does God work in our lives? Does He have providential care over our lives? Does He orchestrate events in our lives to where we sometimes have to stop and realize that God was definitely instrumental in the working out of something? Of course, He does. Is there anything outside of the providence of God? Is there anything outside of His sovereign will? Is there something that He does not know?

I said this on Facebook. I had been without Facebook all of my life until about six months ago. I only got a Facebook account to warn some friends before May 21. And you may not know this; but on Facebook, you can “un-friend” people.

It is funny. The more I write on Facebook, the more I have learned this. On Facebook, you can “un-friend” people and you can “un-like” things that you once liked. You can somehow take that “like” away.

So there are three words from Daniel 12:13 that point to Esther 9. Then in that very same chapter, I am sorry that I noticed that the date for the Feast of Purim is the 12th month and the 13th day. I am sorry, but I cannot un-notice this. You cannot do that. You can “un-friend” and you can “un-like,” but I do not know how to “un-notice.” I could not find a button for that. I cannot click on that.

I am not trying to make this Biblical, I am not trying to say that this is scriptural, and I am not trying to learn anything spiritual from this. But it is a fact that when you look at Daniel 12:13, that is the date of Purim and this chapter in Daniel goes to the chapter in Esther 9 that three words lead us to. This is just a fact that I will try to un-notice, but I really cannot.

Let us take a look at something else that is also a fact, which is the similarity between Purim and the conquest of the land of Canaan. Number one: in the conquest of the land of Canaan, what did they do to their enemies? Who were the enemies? Their enemies were the inhabitants of the land and they killed them.

My wife asked me a good question. We were talking about Purim and relating it to the elect. It was a day of vengeance. It was a day when the Jews killed their enemies. How do believers do this?

Well, take a look at Joshua 11:20:

For it was of JEHOVAH to harden their hearts, that they should come against Israel in battle, that he might destroy them utterly, and that they might have no favour, but that he might destroy them, as JEHOVAH commanded Moses.

This is referring to the inhabitants of the land of Canaan where God indicates that they were to be destroyed utterly.

I cannot find the exact words that I am looking for in Esther 9, but you can just read that chapter. We know that they killed their enemies. They destroyed them. I am sorry that I cannot find this, but it is the same idea. They killed all the enemies who were going to kill them.

A second similarity between the conquest of Canaan is that they inherited the land of Canaan. After they destroyed their enemies, they inherited the land by lot.

Take a look at Joshua 14:2:

By lot was their inheritance, as JEHOVAH commanded by the hand of Moses, for the nine tribes, and for the half tribe.

Look at Joshua 15:1:

This then was the lot of the tribe of the children of Judah by their families…

So lots were drawn for each of the tribes and that would be the land that each tribe would inhabit.

Look at Joshua 16:1:

And the lot of the children of Joseph fell from Jordan by Jericho, unto the water of Jericho on the east…

We find this word “lot” often concerning each of the tribes. By lot, they got this portion of land; by lot, they got that portion of land.

This word “lot” is the same word that we find in Esther. It is also the same word that we find in Proverbs 16:33:

The lot is cast into the lap; but the whole disposing thereof is of JEHOVAH.

He determines what the inheritance is, and the inheritance is given by lot.

Look at Joshua 18:10. Remember that Joshua, of course, is a type of Christ. This says:

And Joshua cast lots for them in Shiloh before JEHOVAH: and there Joshua divided the land unto the children of Israel according to their divisions.

So Christ gives the inheritance to His people, the land of Canaan typifying the Kingdom of Heaven. He gives the new heaven and new earth, eternal life, by lot. He gives it by lot and each one their portion.

You have a portion and I have a portion. Every true believer has an inheritance. It is our possession and it is given to us by lot because God chose us. He chose you according to His perfect will, according to His good pleasure, before the foundation of the world. How did He choose you?

This does not get away from the fact that He had to make a choice, because He determines the lot; but we know that it was nothing based on anything that we had ever done. It was not based on any goodness or on anything in us. It was all based on His own good will. He chose a certain people to receive the inheritance, and He is identifying it as by lot.

These are a couple of similarities. The other thing is that the Jews under Joshua killed their enemies and the Jews under Mordecai and Esther killed all of their enemies in the 127 provinces of King Ahasuerus, and this involved the lot. The third thing is that the Jews rested during the Feast of Purim after killing their enemies.

Go to Joshua 11:23:

So Joshua took the whole land, according to all that JEHOVAH said unto Moses; and Joshua gave it for an inheritance unto Israel according to their divisions by their tribes. And the land rested from war.

This is also the same word. They were to kill their enemies. They were to divide the land by lot. Then they were to rest.

These are the exact elements that we have in the Feast of Purim. They were to kill all of the enemies of the Jews who wanted them dead. Then it was all due to the lot that was chosen. And then they were to rest in their feast.

Let us go to Joshua 21:43:

And JEHOVAH gave unto Israel all the land which he sware to give unto their fathers; and they possessed it, and dwelt therein.

We know that they possessed this land by lot.

Then we read in Joshua 21:44-45:

And JEHOVAH gave them rest round about, according to all that he sware unto their fathers: and there stood not a man of all their enemies before them; JEHOVAH delivered all their enemies into their hand. There failed not ought of any good thing which JEHOVAH had spoken unto the house of Israel; all came to pass.

Notice that all of their enemies were delivered into their hands and that they were able to slay them and to possess the land by lot.

Look at Joshua 23:1-4:

And it came to pass a long time after that JEHOVAH had given rest unto Israel from all their enemies round about, that Joshua waxed old and stricken in age. And Joshua called for all Israel, and for their elders, and for their heads, and for their judges, and for their officers, and said unto them, I am old and stricken in age: And ye have seen all that JEHOVAH your God hath done unto all these nations because of you; for JEHOVAH your God is he that hath fought for you. Behold, I have divided unto you by lot these nations that remain, to be an inheritance for your tribes, from Jordan, with all the nations that I have cut off, even unto the great sea westward.

I think that everyone can see the connection between what happened with the conquest of the land of Canaan, which pictures God’s people receiving Heaven and living forever – the promises of the Bible – and the language related to the Feast of Purim.

Let us go back to Esther 3. We read in Esther 3:8:

And Haman said unto king Ahasuerus, There is a certain people scattered abroad and dispersed among the people in all the provinces of thy kingdom…

We will not look at the language of “a certain people scattered abroad” at this time, but this language of being scattered is found of God’s people in many places. Let us just look at one verse. We read in James 1:1:

James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting.

This is fairly common language in the book of Ezekiel. God’s people are scattered. After the Babylonian captivity, the Jews were set free from Babylon. They could go into the various provinces and many returned back to Judah. Judah was a province; it was one of the 127. Yet they went into all of the other areas.

We know that the 127 provinces relate to Sarah who is “the mother of us all,” typifying all of the elect. And where are the elect found in the world? They are found everywhere. They are all over the earth. I would not say that there is one nation that does not have some elect people in it. So the believers, who are typified by these Jews, are scattered all over the world; but the Jews were only in all of these 127 provinces.

Remember in Esther 3:8, this is Haman speaking to Ahasuerus. So, spiritually, this is Satan having dialogue with God. This is what this is pointing to. And God had just lifted up Haman after the king had the two doorkeepers slain.

This is just as God ended the church age and lifted Satan up out of the bottomless pit. He loosed him and advanced his seat so that he took his seat in the temple “showing himself that he is God.”

So Haman is accusing these Jews before God, which is Satan’s constant theme throughout history as he is the “accuser of our brethren.” Then it continues in Esther 3:8:

…and their laws are diverse from all people; neither keep they the king's laws: therefore it is not for the king's profit to suffer them.

Are our laws diverse from all people? Yes. Yes; they are.

There is no conflict normally between God’s laws and the laws of the land. But if you are in China and they say that you cannot have more than one child and you are pregnant with the second one, what is our law? Our law comes from the Word of God, the Bible; and our law says that we cannot abort the baby. God says that this is murder and killing and we cannot do that. Our law is diverse from the law of China.

There are many other laws, too. The law that applies to the child of God seems strange to the world. It seems strange to them that Sunday is God’s holy day and that we do not go to work on that day and we do not play football on that day or even watch it on the television, but this is God’s Law. We can see why Haman is talking to the king about how diverse the Jews are from them and how different they are from them.

Also, the Bible says that it is “not for kings to drink wine.” We are not to drink at all for any reason because we have no need, absolutely none. The Bible says, “Give strong drink unto him that is ready to perish,” so that they can drink and forget their situation.

When you become a child of God, there are just so many things that you begin to realize that make us very different. We belong to another Kingdom and have another set of laws. The laws of the Bible supersede any earthly laws of any land.

So Haman is charging the Jews of this to the king. Then we read in Esther 3:9-11:

If it please the king, let it be written that they may be destroyed: and I will pay ten thousand talents of silver to the hands of those that have the charge of the business, to bring it into the king's treasuries. And the king took his ring from his hand, and gave it unto Haman the son of Hammedatha the Agagite, the Jews' enemy. And the king said unto Haman, The silver is given to thee, the people also, to do with them as it seemeth good to thee.

This sounds a little unusual. This sounds like Haman is saying, “I will give you the money,” but then the king says, “The silver is given to you.” I am sure that some sort of arrangement was made with Haman. He is saying, “I will give you this money,” but he was probably saying, “Allow me to use certain funds to make this happen; and once we kill all of the Jews, we will seize the spoil, we will gather all of their money, and we will pay you back; and we will also add ten thousand talents of silver to the king’s treasury.” And so the king agrees to this.

Now Esther says of this in Esther 7:4:

For we are sold, I and my people, to be destroyed, to be slain, and to perish. But if we had been sold for bondmen and bondwomen, I had held my tongue…

So she is referring back to this deal and it was a sale. It was a purchase. Haman is saying, “Allow me to give you money in order that this can be done”; and Ahasuerus sells them.

Let us think about this. Spiritually, we know that this is Satan during the great tribulation and Ahasuerus is typifying God. Has God sold His people?

Let us go to Judges 4:2. On one hand, we could say that He definitely has. We read in Judges 4:2:

And JEHOVAH sold them into the hand of Jabin king of Canaan…

This is referring to His own people Israel because they were rebellious and unfaithful. Jabin was a type of Satan, and the Lord sold them into his hand.

This phrase is used several times in the book of Judges. We will just look at one more in Judges 10:7:

And the anger of JEHOVAH was hot against Israel, and he sold them into the hands of the Philistines, and into the hands of the children of Ammon.

So here again, Israel was doing things that made God angry and so He sold them into the hands of their enemies. This is just as Ahasuerus sold the Jews into the hands of the Jew’s enemy, Haman.

Did this happen during the great tribulation? Yes; it did. This happened when God lifted up Satan and gave him rule and authority over the churches and congregations of the world. But God later helped this situation by calling His people out of the churches. This happened to the whole church back in 1988. At that time, we had no idea. God just basically turned over the churches and congregations of the whole world, the place where “Jews” could be found, into the hands of Satan.

This helps us understand Satan’s motivation and desire in ruling over the churches. What did he want to do? He wanted to destroy the people of God. How does he do this? He does this through false gospels and false teachings that are designed to deceive. They are designed so that people will believe them. If you believe them, then you will stay there. If you stay there, then you will be destroyed. You will experience no real salvation and you will perish, exactly as Haman wants the Jews to do.

So this is one way that God uses this idea of being sold. Another way is something that we read in Isaiah 50. In Isaiah 50:1, we read:

Thus saith JEHOVAH, Where is the bill of your mother's divorcement, whom I have put away? or which of my creditors is it to whom I have sold you? Behold, for your iniquities have ye sold yourselves, and for your transgressions is your mother put away.

In our sin, we sell ourselves. Romans 7 says that we are “sold under sin.”

Many of the people who are God’s elect, in the sense that they were predestinated to become saved, were not yet saved prior to May 21 and they were sold to sin. They were sold to Satan. If they had remained in that condition and if the Gospel had never reached them, Satan would have accomplished his desire to destroy the “Jews,” to destroy those elect who were not redeemed as yet because God had not applied His Word to their hearts as yet.

So these are a couple of ways of being sold. This is not an easy idea to think about. Here is Haman and Ahasuerus, or here is God and Satan, having this conversation. Of course, there was no conversation. God just gives us this language to show us what happened.

Then we read in Esther 3:12-14:

Then were the king's scribes called on the thirteenth day of the first month, and there was written according to all that Haman had commanded unto the king's lieutenants, and to the governors that were over every province, and to the rulers of every people of every province according to the writing thereof, and to every people after their language; in the name of king Ahasuerus was it written, and sealed with the king's ring. And the letters were sent by posts into all the king's provinces, to destroy, to kill, and to cause to perish, all Jews, both young and old, little children and women, in one day, even upon the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, which is the month Adar, and to take the spoil of them for a prey. The copy of the writing for a commandment to be given in every province was published unto all people, that they should be ready against that day.

What does this remind us of? This reminds us of May 21 in many ways.

I have a list. The first thing is that the law of the Medes and the Persians was unalterable. The Law of God, the Word of God the Bible, is unchangeable. This is number one. The king gave a law and it could not be changed. It was not even changed later. A new law had to be issued.

The second thing is to notice the decree of the king. It says towards the end of Esther 3:12:

to every people after their language…

This would be in all 127 provinces, so I do not know how many languages it was but it was a lot. What was designed in one language was translated into numerous languages, into all of the languages of the kingdom.

Prior to May 21, Family Radio had the Gospel message of Judgment Day translated into at least 70 languages I think. I would say that this just about covered everyone on earth.

There is talk about people groups and that there are still so many hundreds of languages and people groups not reached, but those people might understand Russian or Chinese or English or Spanish. It was just in their own language, they have not had the Gospel translated or received. But I think that we can say that like never before in history, there was a work of translation done and sent out in a way just prior to May 21 that all of the world was able to hear.

Another thing is that the letters, as it says in verse 13, were “sent by posts into all the king's provinces.” Take a look at 2 Corinthians 3:6:

Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life.

This is referring to the Word of God, the Law of God. If you break or transgress the Law of God, it slays you. It slays the sinner, “The wages of sin is death” or “the letter killeth.” The message that went by letter into 127 provinces was a letter that kills. It was a notification that someone was going to die if they were a Jew. This applied to all of the Jews with no exceptions, young or old. Whoever you were, it did not matter. Everyone was going to be slain on that day if they were a Jew.

Another similarity is that they were “sent by posts.” In 2 Chronicles 30, we read of this word in the days of King Hezekiah. It says in 2 Chronicles 30:6:

So the posts went with the letters from the king and his princes throughout all Israel and Judah, and according to the commandment of the king…

This was about the Passover that they were keeping.

Then we read in 2 Chronicles 30:10:

So the posts passed from city to city through the country of Ephraim and Manasseh even unto Zebulun: but they laughed them to scorn, and mocked them.

They were messengers. That is what a post is. It was a messenger person. It was a messenger carrying a message from the king. Here in the days of Hezekiah, this message was regarding the Passover.

In the days of Esther, they were carrying the message of Purim and of the destruction of the Jews on the 13th day of the 12th month. This is another similarity, which was the message itself. It was a message of Judgment Day, or a day of destruction for all of the Jews.

Put yourself in the place of these people all around the world. All over the earth, they were hearing about Judgment Day. They did hear this, did they not?

It says in Esther 3:14:

The copy of the writing for a commandment to be given in every province was published unto all people, that they should be ready against that day.

How many times was this brought up? “Are you ready?” This message was published to all people.

I am sorry. I am sorry, but I just do not buy it. I just do not buy it when people try to say that this was a false prophecy, that it was a lie. First of all, someone needs to tell me of any other instance when all of the world was reached in this way. Then someone needs to tell me any other instance where a message of the Gospel featuring Judgment Day was put prominently right before the eyes of all of the world to the degree that this was and in the manner that this was for such an intense and prolonged period of time where people could not avoid this no matter where they were and no matter where they went. This was published to all people.

I am sorry, but I still see the hand of God in this and I do not know how else this could be explained, especially when we were very closely involved in trying to get these things to happen when we would see door after door open up. This happened in island after island. We even had this published in a newspaper in Greenland. And do not let that large spot on the map fool you because they only have a handful of people there. This was published all over the world because God was behind it and He wanted it to be published.

Why? We will talk about this later. But someone might say, and this would be legitimate, “Alright; you have these six similarities between this letter and what happened before May 21. But come on; the message sent was of a date,” and this is another similarity, “but this date does not match up to May 21 and this date does not match up to October 21. So how do you explain this?”

Remember that this is an historical parable and that we have to look for the spiritual meaning. If we look for the spiritual meaning of the numbers of the date in the book of Esther, we will see what message they actually received.

Let us look again in Esther 3:13:

And the letters were sent by posts into all the king's provinces, to destroy, to kill, and to cause to perish, all Jews, both young and old, little children and women, in one day, even upon the thirteenth day of the twelfth month…

If we are looking for the spiritual meaning, we look at the numbers. What does the number 12 mean? It means fullness. It means the fullness of whatever is in view. What is in view? Time is in view. What does the number 13 mean? It points to the end of the world. Another way to look at this is that it is pointing to super-fullness. But time and again in the Bible, the number 13 identifies with the end of the world.

Therefore, the people in 127 provinces where this message was published and where this letter was sent heard a message of the fullness of time and of the end of the world. This was the message that they heard and this is what God is teaching us spiritually, because this is exactly parallel to what the world heard prior to May 21.

I would like to just read this. Things did not turn out exactly as we thought and many are confused and troubled. Was it worth it? Was it of God? But I thought that this was comforting. Look at Esther 4 and remember that this message, spiritually, is sent out in the context of the great tribulation. Haman is advanced. There is no other way to spiritually look at that. During the great tribulation, there was a message sent out to the world of the fullness of time and of judgment at the end of the world, which is what 12/13 points to. We read in Esther 4:1-3:

When Mordecai perceived all that was done, Mordecai rent his clothes, and put on sackcloth with ashes, and went out into the midst of the city, and cried with a loud and a bitter cry; And came even before the king's gate: for none might enter into the king's gate clothed with sackcloth. And in every province, whithersoever the king's commandment and his decree came, there was great mourning among the Jews, and fasting, and weeping, and wailing; and many lay in sackcloth and ashes.

What a beautiful reaction. This describes in very good detail what happened in the world right up until May 21. This is what happened all over the earth. In China, in India, in Africa, in South America, in all of the nations of the world wherever the elect where found, when they heard the message of Judgment Day, that the fullness of time had come and that it was the end of the world, they were broken in spirit. They were broken in heart and they humbled themselves. By the language here, they were just completely broken. For all of the Jews in all of the provinces, this was the reaction and this is where they were left.

As we go on, we are going to find that this is going to lead right up to May 21 and that God is going to, once again, emphasize the sending forth of the Gospel in an intense way leading up to that day. Then it will look at Judgment Day, May 21. The book of Esther will look at this for two or three chapters. Then for the last couple of chapters, it will discuss this period after that day, after May 21 and October 21, until the end.

So we have I think, again, excellent information that God is giving us that there are a bunch of people out there who are broken. And I know that there are a lot of people who do not want to hear anything else about dates. They do not want to hear anything about dates and they do not want to know anything about the end right now. But you know who does? Those elect out there.

When the letter comes a second time, it tells us that it is time to start sending out information again. This is because when we look at the spiritual context of Esther, it is after May 21. So when the letter comes a second time saying that the day has been turned, this is good news for all of the Jews, and I am sure that the enemies of the Jews did not like this at all.

So I am sorry. I am sorry for anyone who does not like this. But you also have to consider that from where I am personally, from my vantage point, we are in a situation where we have to bring the Gospel to the world and encourage the hearts of those who are brokenhearted. We never should have been and we should no longer be concerned about those who maybe are not “Jews,” those who are not God’s people.

Let us stop here and close with a word of prayer.

Dear Heavenly Father, we do thank You for Your Word, the Bible. Father, we pray for wisdom. We do ask for guidance. We pray that You would open up the Scriptures and our understanding to them and help us to understand. Father, we pray for gentleness. Help us not to strive but to be gentle unto all men. Forgive us our sins and forgive us when we have done things that are not pleasing to you. Father, we thank You for this day. We thank You for all of the blessings that You have given us, and we pray this in Christ’s Name. Amen.