Thursday, September 26, 2019

Proving He Loves You

Daily Thoughts – September 26th  


Then the Lord rained down burning sulfur on Sodom and Gomorrah—from the Lord out of the heavens.”–Genesis 19:24 (in context)

The cities were filled with sin.  Man slept with man and woman with woman.  Rape, incest, murder, evil thoughts and actions were pervasive throughout the population of the city.  The corruptness had become the norm and righteousness was hard to find.  The pleas of Abraham had been for the Lord to show mercy if only 10 righteous people could be found in the entire city (Genesis 18:16-33).  It was not to be and we know the rest of the story.  In an instant the Lord destroyed the two cities of Sodom and Gomorrah, as no righteousness could be found within their walls, except Lot and his family.  Was the Lord justified in destroying these cities?  How can you answer anything but yes when you are contemplating the actions of the Lord.  He is justified in every action ever taken by His own hand.  He is the designer, creator and author of life, death and all that is in between.  Who can tell Him that He is wrong in His actions?

For I propose to you that the society in which we live, the acceptance of our culture has become so complacent and accepting that unrighteousness once again abounds within the walls of each city.  Should we be looking heavenward for the streaking flares of sulfur raining down upon our cities any day now?  Are you convinced that the population of Sodom and Gomorrah were much worse than the cities of our 21st century?  Certainly, there are more than 10 righteous people inside of your city walls, and you are likely one of them.  Is this what keeps the Lord from pouring out His wrath upon our very existence?

There is a significant reason that God has not destroyed the earth again, despite the evil, corruption, sadistic and deplorable sinful lives of mankind.  That reason is the one we call Jesus Christ.  For you see, the wrath of our Lord; which was poured out on Sodom, it was poured out on the Philistines, it was poured out on the Egyptians, it was poured out on the entire world in the flood of Genesis 6; was also poured out on the very flesh of God’s own Son.  Take that in for just a moment.  We are no better than those of Sodom and Gomorrah, or those of Egypt, or those that ridiculed Noah.  We as a society in general have turned our back on serving the Lord with everything we have, and we have chosen to pursue the pleasures of the world instead.  The wrath of God that you and I so rightfully deserve for our thoughts, our actions and our sinful nature would be death, devastation and destruction of catastrophic proportion.  This overwhelming wrath of the Lord, the pain and suffering we deserve, was delivered to one man who did live perfectly righteous in every way.

The sacrificial lamb for our sins was slaughtered because you and I deserved to die for what we have done, not because of anything He did.  Jesus Christ bore the extreme wrath of God, something we cannot begin to fathom, so you and I would not have to.  When you read John 3:16; “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever shall believe in Him will have eternal life.”; the words are almost clichĂ©, because we have watered them down to our view of love.  I want you to realize the severity of God’s wrath that He poured out onto His only Son, based on the perspective of His wrath that He poured out on Sodom and Gomorrah, Egypt, and the world in the Old Testament.  This extreme wrath was poured out on this one man, so that you and I would be exempt from this punishment in our lifetime.  He loves us that much.  Not a little bit as you and I love each other and our families; but His love was so intense that He chose to destroy His own Son, literally and figuratively, so that we can enter eternity one day.

Is God’s wrath still alive today?  Yes, but we are shielded from that wrath because of the lamb that paid the price for our deplorable sinful nature.  One day, God’s wrath will once again be released upon this earth, for those who have chosen to deny His sacrificial offering.  This wrath will make Sodom and Gomorrah look like a walk in the park on Sunday afternoon.  The fire and sulfur that rained from the sky on these cities will be nothing compared to the depths of Hell that await mankind for their denial of Jesus Christ, and God the Father.  Don’t question the reality of it.  God has given you plenty of warning.  Jesus has pleaded with Him on your behalf and taken your punishment already.  The next step will be utter destruction of this earth as we know it and you won’t be able to avoid His wrath without accepting Jesus Christ as your Savior and Lord.  Don’t blame it on God, for He provided a path for your escape, just as He did for Lot and his family to escape from Sodom on that night as recorded in Genesis.  Are you telling your friends?  Are you telling your family?  Do you care enough about their salvation to ensure that they are not exposed to God’s wrath one day?  If not, ask yourself why not.  Why is that not the most important thing you have to do today?

Who is pleading with the Lord on our behalf today?

© Sondove Enterprises, 2019

For more Daily Thoughts go to:

If you would like to be added to the email distribution please click here: Daily Thoughts


Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Know Your Roots

Daily Thoughts – Know Your Roots

“For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother, and be joined to his wife; and they shall become one flesh.” – Genesis 2:24

The seasons in life pass by without a watch.  Consistently, we are coming back to this same spot, and you would expect that we would have learned something along the way to make us more proficient at dealing with the problems in life.  I pause on this day every year to reflect on who I am and those things that helped shape the person you see before you today.  For it was on this day in 1960 that my parents solemnly swore to stay with each other through the good and the bad, the ups and the downs, the sick as well as the healthy days.  Two words were uttered that forever changed their small world – “I Do”.

I am the third child in our family.  I have an incredible older brother and beautiful sister that loved, protected, taught and yes even tormented me throughout my entire childhood.  But the love runs deep in our family and there is not a day that goes by where that love is not evidenced in one way or another.  All three of us have children, and some of them have children.  We have had the opportunity to pass on the legacy that comes from the two parents we learned from.  A legacy of truth, love, forgiveness, support, encouragement and serving God.

I am who I am because my parents and my siblings taught me right from wrong, good from evil and to serve God with every fiber of my being.  For in doing so, we are giving back to those that have gone on before and teaching those that will go on afterword what true love is about.  On this day, I want to stop for just a moment and express my extreme thankfulness and gratitude to my parents, Jim and Judy Palmer,  for their incredible marriage (59 years) and the love they have showered upon all of us over those many years.  God bless you and give you many more wonderful years together.

God designed man and woman to become one with each other.  He created Adam and then created Eve for her, as a companion and helper to the man.  They were brought together as one to pro-create and as such have populated the entire earth.  Man and Woman were formed in perfection for the purpose to love one another and to complement one another.  This is by the design of the Creator of the Universe with as much perfection as when He created the stars in the heavens.  It is perfect in its formation and purpose.  Thank you Mom and Dad for serving God in your marriage and abiding by His principles in your lives.

I pray for my parents, and all of those married couples in the world today.  I pray that their love may continue to be rich with Your purpose and that they might fulfill everything You have brought them together to fulfill.  Bless them, that they might in turn bless others with the example of their love for each other and their love for You.     – Amen

© Sondove Enterprises, 2019
For more Daily Thoughts go to:
If you would like to be added to the email distribution please click here: Daily Thoughts

Friday, September 20, 2019

Why Jesus

Daily Thoughts – Why Jesus

“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.” – Ephesians 2:8-9 (in context)

Truth is measured in one of three ways: logical consistency, experiential relevance, and empirical reliability.  In all truths we are challenged to demonstrate in one of these ways that indeed a claim is indeed verifiable.  So, by these standards, how do you approach the topic of Jesus Christ, as the only way to heaven?  We have no physical evidence, to present in a manner that would ever be acceptable to a nay-sayer.  If someone has asked for proof in order for them to believe in Jesus Christ, I propose that they are not really intent on finding the truth, but trying to legitimize their own opinion of the unauthentic claim of Jesus’ deity.

So, when we stand before an Atheist, a Muslim, a Hindu, a Jew, a Buddhist or any other non-believer, how do we debate in a manner that will have some influence on their perspective? 

First, you must decide that you are willing to debate on the topic.  You must commit to allow God, the Father to use you, and to work through you.  We must realize we are incapable of saving anyone, we can only lead them to the Savior.  Preparation requires study, just as in any effort you put forth.  If you want to excel at work, you study and prepare for the skills you will need.  If you want to excel at sport, you put in the hard work to improve your skills, your talents and your abilities to play the game at a higher level.  If you want to excel at marriage, you must put in the work to expand your ability to love another selflessly.  Evangelizing for the Lord requires work on your part to understand His love, His grace, His salvation plan and His desire to bring all mankind to His eternity.  In short, be able to tell the story of Jesus. 

Second, you must put emotions aside, and not allow yourself to be angered by their response and arguments.  Jesus taught us to spread His word in love.  Love one another as God first loved you.  This includes loving those who are opposed to your love of Jesus Christ.  Reaching out to the non-believer is an act that must be centered in your love for others, not in your desire to win the argument.  If your neighbor doesn’t believe, your love for their eternal destination must lead your actions.

Finally, you must understand that their opinions and perspectives are just as important to them as your love of Christ is to you.  We can’t argue against their beliefs without insulting them.  Keeping in mind that they have arrived at this point in their life through careful consideration of alternatives, and wisdom gained over their personal experiences just as you have.  A more effective method is to share your story, how did you become a Christian and what has God done for you.  Your experiences are yours alone and have built the foundation of your faith.  This testimony is something that another cannot argue against, just as you can’t argue against theirs.  Know your storyline first, know how to tell it, know how God has had His finger in it   The experiential relevance of your life events have framed your emotions and this becomes the basis for your discussion with others.  You cannot evangelize on someone else’s story, your faith must be evidenced through your own experiences.

Why is Jesus the only way to heaven then?
There are those who accept the truth that there must be something more than this life.  They believe that there is a greater power in the Universe, but do not necessarily want to believe in God as a supreme authority.  This means they recognize that there is a hierarchical framework to our existence.  These individuals generally can wrap their head around the logical argument of God, but may not understand the reason for a Savior.  For these individuals I’ve found it valuable to first help them understand the love God has for us, and His desire for us to join with Him for eternity.  It’s important to state the holiness and perfection of God, the Father.  We are sinful, from the time of Adam, man has become sinful in our self-centered driven life, rather than God centered life.  All have sinned and therefore need to have our sins redeemed and forgiven.  We must repent from our sinful life and turn from the ways of the world. 

Many religions believe that works can overcome these sins, but there is no amount of good works we can accomplish redemption in His eyes.  Think about it.  How many good works does it take to overcome one sinful act – swearing?  How many good works does it take to overcome adultery, or murder, or stealing?  We all sin, multiple times every day.  It is impossible to believe that we can do enough works to overcome the volume of sinful actions in our lives. 

So, God, by His loving grace, provided another way.  A sacrifice, the crucifixion of His Son, Jesus Christ, to atone for our sins and bring us into a state of righteousness to exist in God’s presence.  Through the death of His beloved Son, God demonstrated His love for you.  This sacrifice created the only way to atone for our evil works, our sinful actions, and character.  The life of Christ represents a perfect life (2 Corinthians 5:21) without sin.  Therefore, by sacrificing this life, God has provided a path a path to redemption, and through belief in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, we are grafted into His perfection.  God could have abandoned mankind and separated us for all of eternity, but chose to love us instead. 

By providing a path to redemption, God has reached out to all mankind to join with Him for all of eternity.  The refusal to accept this gift of grace is a refusal to accept eternity with God.  God doesn’t damn anyone to Hell, man chooses it for himself.  This is in and of itself an unforgivable sin.  You see, if we don’t want God, He will not force you to spend eternity with Him.  He loves you that much.  The scriptures over and over again tell us that Jesus Christ is the bridge, the path, the grace that God has provided for salvation, and by no other manner will mankind be saved from eternal damnation.

Why Jesus?   Because God wants you to be with Him in a perfect eternity and because of your sinful nature, there is no way for you to get there on your own.

© Sondove Enterprises, 2019
For more Daily Thoughts go to:
If you would like to be added to the email distribution please click here: Daily Thoughts

Thursday, September 19, 2019

The Blind Hypocrite

Daily Thoughts – The Blind Hypocrite

“And the judgment is based on this fact: God’s light came into the world, but people loved the darkness more than the light, for their actions were evil.” – John 3:19 (in context)

Do you agree with me that we live in a fallen world?
What does that mean to you?  Fallen from where?  Have we reached the bottom?  What caused the fall?

So, what are the evils in today’s world?

-          Murder  (War, school shootings, street shootings, abortion)
-          Adultery (sexual debauchery, homosexuality, pornography)
-          Lying (Fake News daily, social media slander, verbally)
-          Materialism/Idols (Jobs, cars, homes, electronics, money, anything you can’t live without)
-          Lack of honor/respect (Antifa, political parties, social justice)
-          Stealing (Looting, gang robbery, downloading online music, plagiarism)

las-vegas-strip.jpgThese are some of the obvious examples.  You could also add to it emotions such as jealousy, greed, hatred, lust, envy, selfishness, and negativity.  When we observe the evil in today’s world, we must ask ourselves, is it truly new, or is it simply a new methodology of execution?  I posit that it is the later.  Evil has existed since the garden of Eden.  If you look carefully, you will see that these also originated with the 10 Commandments.

With this understanding then, we should not really be surprised at the unbelievable falsities, anger, and evil we see around us.  The scriptures tell us that this would happen.  The people will turn from the Father and be lovers of themselves and their pleasures (2 Tim 3:1-5).  This is what we are seeing today. 

Life is not a sporting event, with a winner and loser.  It’s not a Democrat vs Republican, male vs female, black vs white, or American vs rest of world.  As shown by the evils above we have diminished the moral fabric of the world, over many generations and through the desire of man to put himself above others.  This is fostered through the societal perspective that everyone should live for themselves, and not necessarily for the betterment of others.  The root of evil in our world today is the blindness to the Gospel as it is written.  People are taking the scriptures out of context and one by one using them to establish that their way is approved by God.  This is the blindness I refer to.

-          Some will say that abortion is okay in God’s eyes because there are references in the Old Testament where God had the children of His enemies killed (ex: Hosea 9:15-17)
-          Homosexuality is okay, because David, man after God’s own heart, loved Jonathon as much as his own soul, it is therefore acceptable for us to love another of the same sex.  (1 Samuel 20:1-23, 41-42)
-          Slavery is okay in God’s eyes, because several passages in the Bible reference slaves (Eph 6:5)

You see how anything can be taken from scripture to prove a point, if one so chooses.  But the Bible is not Fake News, it is the Good News.  It must be held in full context and revered as the word of God, our Sovereign and Holy Lord.  He, and only He will be the final judge of mankind.  Far be it from me to judge another man’s eternal fate.  I am going to share my understanding though, in as much as it is derived from the scriptures and not my own contrived opinions.  This is my recommendation to you as well.  Be strong in your faith, be strong in your evangelism of the word, but be loving and full of grace in your condemnation of another’s sinful acts. 

There is only one thing where winning is important, and that is in a person’s eternal resting place.  Everything else we compete with one another in this life is truthfully meaningless.  The Messiah will return one day, and none of this hatred we see today will mean anything.  Jesus talked down to the Pharisees and Sadducees, and called them vipers, and hypocrites; because they held so tightly to their interpretation of the Torah, and wielded it around like a sword of judgement upon the Isrealites.  Let’s not fall into that same mindset as Christians of today.

© Sondove Enterprises, 2019
For more Daily Thoughts go to:
If you would like to be added to the email distribution please click here: Daily Thoughts

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Fake News - The Pseudo Christian

Fake News - The Pseudo Christian
“And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name {then Jesus} under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved.” – Acts 4:12 (in context)
The world will tell you there are many ways to eternal salvation, and that if you live a good life it doesn’t matter what you call it or how you get there. 

Take Oprah Winfrey for example:
“There are many paths to what you call God.  Her path might be something else, and when she gets there she might call it the light.  But, her loving and her kindness and her generosity brings her to the same point that it brings you, it doesn’t matter if she calls it God along the way or not.”  “There couldn’t possibly be just one way.” “I am a Christian, but that doesn’t mean you have to be.  You can follow your own path to God, and I respect that.”

Or take Jim Carey:
“I believe in the energy of God.  Everything is divine, everything about me is divine.  It doesn’t matter to me what’s happening elsewhere.”

Or take Stephen Cobert:
“[I’m] a nice guy. I go to church I teach Sunday school. I have family values.  Though I am a committed Christian , I believe that everyone has the right to their own religion, be you Hindu , Jew or Muslim.”

Or take Jay-Z:
“If people must know my religious beliefs, I believe in one God. I don’t believe in religion. I don’t believe in Christians or Muslims. I think all that separates people. I think it’s one God. I think it’s all the same God, and I don’t believe in Hell”

Or take Beyonce:
“My relationship and how I feel about God and what he does for me is something deeply personal.  (and regarding her stage presence) I honestly believe He [God] wants people to celebrate their bodies so long as you don’t compromise your Christianity in the process, it’s all good.”

Can you be a Christian and be okay that those around you don’t believe in Jesus Christ as the only way to God?  I mean, do you not believe the scriptures?  Do you truthfully not care about the other person, enough to help them find the Savior?  Can you do the things that some of these celebrities do, and still call yourself a Christian?

What does it really mean to be a Christian?  A follower of Jesus Christ.  You believe that He lived, He died, and rose again on the 3rd day to take away the sins of mankind, and create a path for sinners to enter into eternity with God, the Father.  It means that you have given your life to Jesus Christ, your heart has been changed, you are a new creation in Him.
So, when the world tells you their definition of Christianity, as noted by the celebrities above, how many Christians are lost as a result?  I’m certainly in no position to judge the accuracy of their statements, nor have any authority to tell them to stop mis-leading the world on the topic.  But, I also know that what I see from them, and so many others in the media and on the big-screen, is not based on the foundation of the Bible.  It would appear as though they are molding God to fit into their box and conform to their intent for what a deity should be, to compensate for their desire to live their life in whatever way they so choose.  In doing so, I fear then that they are influencing millions and millions of people to this Pseudo God, through their preaching of their fake news.

God cannot be conformed to our desire.  We do not shape God in man’s image, but rather the opposite.  We are made in the image of God.  I don’t believe this to be a physical form, but rather a spiritual presence.  In 1 John 4:8, 16, the scripture tells us: “Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love ... God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him.”  This is the image we were created in.  God love’s all mankind, and through His Son, Jesus Christ, has made a way for salvation.  Outside of this path though, there is nothing that can overcome the sin that has separated you from Him.  He created you as love, but we have all fallen so far away, it is no longer recognizable.  Jesus Christ’s death and resurrection is the redemption to restore that love once again, and put you back into the image by which you were created.

Move away from the fake news, and get your truth from the scriptures.  Put away your idols, and focus on the one true God.
© Sondove Enterprises, 2019
For more Daily Thoughts go to:
If you would like to be added to the email distribution please click here: Daily Thoughts

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

“Oh God! Oh..”

Daily Thoughts – September 11th  

“Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.” – James 4:14

What will your last words be?  When is your last night on earth?  When will you last hug your child, your spouse, your parents, or siblings.  Face it, for the majority of us, we have no control over our last breath, or last words, or actions.

The last words of many center around the acknowledgement of God Almighty.  One of the most chilling audio tapes I have heard this week came from a 911 emergency call from a man named Kevin Cosgrove (WARNING: content may be disturbing).  He was on the 105th floor in the South Tower on September 11th, on the phone with the emergency service in New York when the building collapsed.  I am drawn to tears as I think of those that were trapped in the World Trade Center buildings, and their families left to wonder how, why and what they were to do next.

I was on a business trip in Los Angeles on that day, separated from my wife and kids, with no way to get back home.  Gripped in fear for their safety, and uncertainty of what would come next.  I could not shake the images of what just happened and avoid the fear that if it happened in New York, it could happen in L.A. or Houston just as quickly.  I questioned my own faith.  Was I ready for death and what that meant?  I sat down the following day in a small coffee shop in Anaheim and drafted this poem…
It’s amazing how much we lean on each other, but even more so how much we re-evaluate theology during times of extreme pressure.  There is something inside of each of us that automatically returns to our Creator when the reality of death shows it’s ugly face.  The realization, that there is something on the other side of the very last breath we take, is unsettling for those who have lived as if there wasn’t.  Somewhere in that split second, of inhaling oxygen and the deep final exhale, our mind races to resolve any unsettled business, and we must come to grips with the choices we’ve made in life.  It cannot be avoided, as much as we try, it must be dealt with. 

God Do You Know My Mommy
Mommy, are you coming home
I feel so all alone
The TV said people have died
I didn’t even get to say goodbye

God, do you know my Mommy
She’s the one with deep brown eyes
Please, hold her hand, draw her close
And keep her by Your side
She’s afraid when the thunder rolls
And lightning lights up the sky
So hold her close and comfort her
And keep her by Your side

Daddy’s been crying and praying
Like I’ve never seen before
He’s holding their wedding picture
That used to hang by the bedroom door.

God, do you know my Mommy
She’s the most beautiful one of all
Please, let Your Son shine upon her
And keep her by Your side
She’s really gonna miss my Daddy
They used to hug each other tight
So hold her close and give her love
And keep her by Your side.

The sun came up this morning
I was hoping it was just a dream
The policeman came and knocked on the door
I knew my life would never be the same.

God, do you know my Mommy
She’s got a smile so full of life
Please, give her Your love
And keep her by Your side
She loves when we go for walks
On a cool October night
So can You walk with her now, hold her tight
And keep her by Your side.
God, do you know my Mommy….

- Rich Palmer, 9/14/2001©

Count your blessings today.  Don’t wait for tomorrow, look your loved ones in the eye as soon as possible and tell them you love them.  The emotions and urgency we all felt on the 12th of September 2001 should be an everyday event, for we know not when our time will draw to an end.  If your children weren’t born before 9-11, please ensure that they understand what happened on that day and how uncertain our very next breath is. 

If you are still uncertain about God’s plan of salvation, confront your doubt today, do not wait, you are not promised tomorrow.  If you have questions please send me an e-mail and I will do everything I can to help you understand or I will find someone who can.  This is the most important decision of your life, don’t wait until your last breath to call out for salvation.

© Sondove Enterprises, 2019
For more Daily Thoughts go to:
If you would like to be added to the email distribution please click here: Daily Thoughts

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

In Three Days – I will Rebuild this Temple

Daily Thoughts – September 10th

It’s important to understand the geography of Jesus day to understand the paths He walked.  Jerusalem was not large by today’s standards, but a huge epicenter in biblical days.  The wall contained city measured just short of a mile end to end, and just over ½ mile at it’s widest point.  We would think of it as a large farm in America, just under 350 acres.  It was fortified against attack by walls and gates on all sides, and within the walls contained the Palace of Herod (along the west side of Jerusalem), Antonio Fortress (in the North), Temple Mount (Northeast corner), Upper city (Southwest corner), Lower city (South) and City of David (Southeast corner).  The Mount of Olives was ½ mile East of Jerusalem, separated by a large valley, known as the Kidron Valley.  The Garden of Gethsemane was on the Mount of Olives, just East of the Golden Gate (entrance to the Temple), less than 1000 feet from the Temple Mount.  Bethany, where Lazarus was raised from the dead, was about 2 miles farther to the East, and Bethlehem was about 6-7 miles Southeast of Jerusalem. 

In Three Days – I will Rebuild this Temple

“Every day Jesus taught at the temple, but every evening He went out to spend the night on the Mount of Olives. And early in the morning all the people would come to hear Him at the temple.” – Luke 21:37-38 (in context)

Why is this city (Jerusalem) so important in today’s world?  Because in Bible prophecy it clearly tells us that the Messiah will return this little city in the last days.  Zechariah 14:4 states, “And his feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east, and the mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley; and half of the mountain shall remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south.”  Splitting from the mount of Olives from the east to the west will split directly through the old city of Jerusalem, and many believe more specifically, right through the Eastern gate of the Temple Mount (also known as the Golden Gate).  Standing on the Mount of Olives and looking toward the city of Jerusalem, one sees the Eastern gate. 

It was sealed shut by the Muslims during the reign of Suleiman, in the early 16th century, fulfilling the prophecy of Ezekiel 44:1-3, “Then he brought me back the way of the gate of the outward sanctuary which looketh toward the east; and it was shut. Then said the Lord unto me; This gate shall be shut, it shall not be opened, and no man shall enter in by it; because the Lord, the God of Israel, hath entered in by it, therefore it shall be shut. It is for the prince; the prince!” 

In Jesus day, this gate was open, and would have frequently been used by Jesus as He went to the Temple to teach and pray.  Jesus was on the Mount of Olives overlooking the city of Jerusalem when the scriptures tell us in Luke 19:41-44,“As Jesus approached Jerusalem (from the mount of Olives) and saw the city, He wept over it and said, “If only you had known on this day what would bring you peace! But now it is hidden from your eyes. For the days will come upon you when your enemies will barricade you and surround you and hem you in on every side. They will level you to the ground—you and the children within your walls. They will not leave one stone on another, because you did not recognize the time of your visitation from God.”  He was coming down the pathway (road) into Jerusalem and looking right at the Temple and Eastern Gate.

These steps are on the southern side of the temple mount, and would lead right into the colonnade, and inner temple courtyard.  As Jesus made His way to the temple from the Mount of Olives, He had to have walked along these steps and entered into the courtyards to teach, pray, and chastise the merchants selling therein.  These steps have been excavated, in the late 1800’s, and are still there today.  Some have been overlayed with new concrete blocks, but one can still walk along the evidenced original stone steps leading up to the southern wall of the Temple mount.  It is with 95% certainty that these are the same steps Jesus walked upon multiple times throughout His life.

-     Luke 2:27-28: ..the child Jesus was taken to Simeon in the temple to be consecrated to the Lord.
In Jesus day, as one would make their way into the city walls with the intent of going to the temple to they would ascend a flight of stairs, carved into the hard stone of the hillside.
-          Luke 2:41-49: …the teenage Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem when His parents left.  They returned to find Him with the teachers and rabbi’s learning and listening.
-          Luke 21:27-28: … Jesus enters the temple from the Mount of Olives to teach
-         Mark 11:15-18: … Jesus overturns the money-changers and merchants tables
-         Matthew 22:21, Matthew 22:31-32, Matthew 22:37-38, Luke 21:2-4, Luke 2:47, Matthew 22:33, Luke 21:38: …Jesus teaching in the temple courtyard, parables, watching the widow give two small coins, etc.

Neil Armstrong, first man to step foot on the moon, was quoted after visiting Israel in 1994, walking on the southern steps of the Temple Mount is even more exciting than walking on the moon” as he bent down and kissed the steps leading to the temple.  It was also a very emotional place for Lisa and I when we visited.  As you sit on the steps on imagine Jesus standing here and teaching, or challenging the Pharisees, it quickly overwhelms one.  This is a must visit if you ever have the chance to visit Jerusalem. 

© Sondove Enterprises, 2019
For more Daily Thoughts go to:
If you would like to be added to the email distribution please click here: Daily Thoughts