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Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Horses in Virginia
I took this photo several years ago at Shenandoah Crossing near Charlottesville, Virginia

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"Boring Genealogies? (Part 2)"

"The Enduring Kingdom!"

"The record of the genealogy of Jesus the Messiah, the son of David, the son of Abraham" (Matthew 1:1). "Your house and your kingdom will endure forever before me; your throne will be established forever" (2 Samuel 7:16).

Neither Brooksyne nor I know a lot about our genealogy and it's a subject neither of us have had much interest in, although I find as I get older there is a tendency to want more information about my roots.

Several years ago Brooksyne received a letter from an attorney in California informing her that she was a descendant of Marion E. Lott, who had died and left no will. They were searching for her descendants in order to distribute her estate. Brooksyne initially thought it was an error since she'd never heard of this woman but, by examining the names of other descendants listed, she had some sense of how she was related through her Mom's side.

Over the next several years she periodically received statements informing her of the progress of the estate settlement, but she had no idea how much she was going to get since it was undisclosed. This of course created not only a mystique concerning the amount but also who was this wealthy distant ancestor!

Well, several weeks ago the matter was finally settled and Brooksyne received a check for $153.99.  It was an unexpected blessing to receive a gift from an unknown ancestor, though it's certainly not an amount that will alter our lifestyle! 

There are inheritances of monetary and property value.  There are character and physical traits passed down through generations.  And there are spiritual blessings that are passed from one generation to the next.  Brooksyne can trace her spiritual lineage back at least three generations.
Yesterday we examined a spiritual promise made to Abraham 4,000 years earlier which was fulfilled in Christ that "All peoples on earth will be blessed through you" (Genesis 12:3).  Today, as we continue to study the genealogy of Christ, consider the phrase, "Jesus the Messiah, the son of David." David and Abraham both received covenant promises in regard to their offspring. Today's second verse concludes a prophetic message from the Lord concerning David, "Your house and your kingdom will endure forever before me; your throne will be established forever" (see 2 Samuel 7:5-16).

Consider how devout Jews were to interpret this promise at the time of Christ's first advent (coming). After all, about 400 years after David lived the nation was taken into captivity and the earthly aspect of his kingdom ceased. In fact even after the Jews returned from Babylon there is no record of the monarchy being reestablished and neither has it been to this day.

But devout Jews recognized this as a Messianic prophecy. This is clear from the context. Indeed through David's offspring, Jesus Christ, His house and kingdom has endured and will endure forever. This truth is further emphasized; "Your throne will be established forever."

This great promise brings wonderful assurance today. Instability surrounds us and uncertainty persistently knocks at our door. We wonder, what's next? Some of you are being battered about with issues in your own life. We can all sense the travails of the fallen creation in our families, communities, nation and throughout the world.

But our focus must be on the ever enduring Kingdom of Jesus Christ. In the angelic announcement to Mary prior to her miraculous conception we read these remarkable words concerning Jesus, "Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God. You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give Him the name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David, and He will reign over the house of Jacob forever; His kingdom will never end" (Luke 1:30-33).

Some 1,700 years after Christ's first advent George Frideric Handel captured this truth in the most memorable portion of his epic work, "Messiah".

And He shall reign forever and ever,
King of kings! and Lord of lords!
King of kings! and Lord of lords!
And He shall reign forever and ever,
King of kings! and Lord of lords!
Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Hallelujah!

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Daily Prayer: Father, Scripture records that no eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has conceived what You have prepared for those who love You.  Even in our most vivid and God-inspired dreams we can't begin to imagine all the joys and surprises that await us when we cross to the other side.  It is there that we will join other ransomed souls around Your throne where Your kingdom has no end and You will reign forever and ever….Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Hallelujah!  Hal-le-lu-jah!!!

Brooksyne directing choir
The following was written by Stephen
Brooksyne is directing a 35 voice choir this year which will perform the musical "Hope Has Hands" in four separate locations over the next several weeks.  As you can see from the photo she is a very expressive choir director! 
Here's one of Brooksyne's favorite songs from the musical titled
"The Lord Has Been Kind"  Video
(This is from a local church that performed the musical)
(Brooksyne's note:  Stephen really likes this photo and insists on posting it.  I guess I'll stop fighting it because it keeps me three years younger.)

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

Click on the link to open and play.
(In some cases you may also need to click again to start the song.)
"Hallelujah Chorus" (from Handel's Messiah)

Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir  
A more traditional version  Video
Here are the lyrics and a midi version.

"Ancient Words"  Video  Last night we visited our friends Mike and Nicole Martin. Mike leads a Bible Study for bikers and shared some music he had prepared for the services, including this song that really touches my heart.  Mike is the leader of the local chapter of Bikers For Christ

"You're The Lion Of Judah"  Video

Today's photo was taken at Shenandoah Crossing near Charlottesville, Virginia (Google map)

Resources for Christmas Celebrations

It is our desire to share online resources that may be a blessing to families and churches during this Christmas season. We will continue to post these resources through Christmas Day. As we find additional material that we believe will be a blessing we will add it to this list as well.

Christmas Memories  Here's a collection of Christmas memories sent in by daily encouragement readers several years ago, along with an opportunity to share your own story. 

"In Remembrance of Me" pdf  This is a passion-filled Scripture reading for two adults. Brooksyne and I have used this reading with great receptivity during Christmas Eve services many years.  We suggest, if possible, a musical background as the message is read. It is also a great lead-in to a Communion service. It should be thoroughly practiced and read with great feeling.

"When Christ Was Born" pdf This is an adaptation to the tune of "How Great Thou Art". It's a great song to sing as a congregation since most are familiar with the tune.

Responsive Christmas Scripture readings for church or family:
John 1:1-18  pdf
"O Come Let Us Adore Him"  

My First Christmas In Heaven  This is a blessed reminder for all who lost a loved one this year.  This is the poem that Brooksyne read and wrote about in this message.  

Christmas Knowledge Test

have also posted two Christmas carol quizzes here (scroll down).

re you Christmas shopping online?

Christianbook.comDaily Encouragement Net is an affiliate of Christianbook.com. Any orders placed to Christian Book Distributers using this link or any specific product link to a recommended resource in a daily encouragement message will help our Daily Encouragement ministry through a small commission on the sale. Thank you for considering using these links when purchasing online through CBD! Tip: If you are regular CBD customer consider bookmarking this link and using it whenever you shop.

Looking for a very special Christmas gift for your parents?  
Here's an idea!  "The Best Gift You Can Ever Give Your Parents"

Looking for a very special Christmas gift for your children?
Here's an idea!  "The Blessing"

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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.

Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and I make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and to prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."

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