Pages

Monday, September 30, 2013

MONDAY'S BARGAINOMICS BIBLE PASSAGE

Here’s the recap: Ahithophel was “one of David’s counselors” (II Samuel 15:12b, NLT) and the grandfather of Bathsheba; he had joined with Absalom against David. David, on the run from Absalom, was met by Ziba, the servant of Saul’s grandson Mephibosheth, who told him that Mephibosheth “stayed in Jerusalem” (II Samuel 16:3b), meaning he had sided with Absalom. Then along his journey, David was pelted with rocks and cursed by “Shimei son of Gera, from the same clan as Saul’s family” (II Samuel 16:5b, NLT).

But when one of David’s men, “Abishai son of Zeruiah, demanded, ‘Let me go over and cut off his head!’” (II Samuel 16:9b), David responded, “Leave him alone and let him curse… And perhaps the Lord will see that I am being wronged and will bless me because of these curses today” (II Samuel 16:11b, 12).

David realized he had to keep his energy focused on the main issue: his troubles with Absalom. Remember, David had “told Zadok the priest, ‘Look, here is my plan. You and Abiathar should return quietly to the city with your son Ahimaaz and Abiathar’s son Jonathan” (II Samuel 15:27). That gave David four good pairs of eyes and ears in Jerusalem. Also, “David’s friend Hushai returned to Jerusalem” (II Samuel 15:37a), giving him one more spy in the city.

“Meanwhile, Absalom and all the army of Israel arrived at Jerusalem, accompanied by Ahithophel”
(II Samuel 16:15). “When someone told David that his adviser Ahithophel was now backing Absalom, David prayed, ‘O Lord, let Ahithophel give Absalom foolish advice!’” (II Samuel 15:31).

“When David’s friend Hushai the Arkite arrived, he went immediately to see Absalom. ‘Long live the king!’ he exclaimed. ‘Long live the king!’” (II Samuel 16:16).

“‘Is this the way you treat your friend David?’ Absalom asked him. ‘Why aren’t you with him?’”
(II Samuel 16:17).

“‘I’m here because I belong to the man who is chosen by the Lord and by all the men of Israel,’ Hushai replied”
(II Samuel 16:18). Don’t you love this: “I belong to the man who is chosen by the Lord.” Hushai, of course, was referring to David but knew Absalom would take it as meaning him.

Hushai continued: “And anyway, why shouldn’t I serve you? Just as I was your father’s adviser, now I will be your adviser!” (II Samuel 16:19).

“Then Absalom turned to Ahithophel and asked him, ‘What should I do next?’” (II Samuel 16:20).

“Ahithophel told him, ‘Go and sleep with your father’s concubines, for he has left them here to look after the palace. Then all Israel will know that you have insulted your father beyond hope of reconciliation, and they will throw their support to you’” (II Samuel 16:21).

Taking the wives or concubines of a conquered foe was a common practice. It was an in-your-face way of letting your enemy and everyone else know that you were in absolute authority. Absalom listened to Ahithophel’s advice and “set up a tent on the palace roof where everyone” (II Samuel 16:22a) would be perfectly aware of what Absalom was doing. Besides disgracing these poor women, Absalom was spitting in the face of his father.

“Absalom followed Ahithophel’s advice”
(II Samuel 16:23a). But remember David’s prayer? It was going to be answered.

“Free advice is sometimes the most costly kind.” (Woodrow Kroll)

Copyright © 2013
Judy Woodward Bates

BARGAINS OF THE DAY!


Calvin Klein - CK3097S

How about some deals from www.6PM.com? This site always includes FREE SHIPPING:

$180 CALVIN KLEIN SUNGLASSES - $34.99.

$58 BCBGeneration ANDY WATERSNAKE iPAD CASE - $14.99. 2 color choices.

$32 NEFF STAPLE HEADPHONES - $9.99. Gray.

$59 XOXO GOLD DIGGER BLACK PRINT HOBO BAG - $15.99.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

SUNDAY'S BARGAINOMICS BIBLE PASSAGE

David is on the run from his own son Absalom. He’s been met by Ziba, the servant of Saul’s grandson Mephibosheth. You may remember his story:

“(Saul’s son Jonathan had a son named Mephibosheth, who was crippled as a child. He was five years old when the report came from Jezreel that Saul and Jonathan had been killed in battle. When the child’s nurse heard the news, she picked him up and fled. But as she hurried away, she dropped him, and he became crippled.)” (II Samuel 4:4, NLT).

David showed mercy to Saul’s family so that while David was king, “Mephibosheth… lived in Jerusalem and ate regularly at the king’s table” (II Samuel 9:13). Now, fleeing from Absalom, David is met by Mephibosheth’s servant Ziba who “had two donkeys loaded” (II Samuel 16:1a) with supplies for David and his followers.

But when David asked Ziba about Mephibosheth, Ziba told him that "He stayed in Jerusalem” (II Samuel 16:3b). In other words, he’d sided with Absalom. At least David had a few loyal friends in Jerusalem who were able to keep him informed. Meanwhile, he had more problems to face on his journey.

“As King David came to Bahurim, a man came out of the village cursing them. It was Shimei son of Gera, from the same clan as Saul’s family. He threw stones at the king and the king’s officers and all the mighty warriors who surrounded him. ‘Get out of here, you murderer, you scoundrel!’ he shouted at David. ‘The Lord is paying you back for all the bloodshed in Saul’s clan. You stole his throne, and now the Lord has given it to your son Absalom. At last you will taste some of your own medicine, for you are a murderer!’” (II Samuel 16:5-8).

Shimei, a relative of Saul’s, was thrilled to see David getting his “comeuppance.” But the men with David had no intentions of allowing his taunts to go unpunished: “‘Why should this dead dog curse my lord the king?’ Abishai son of Zeruiah demanded. ‘Let me go over and cut off his head!’” (II Samuel 16:9).

“‘No!’ the king said. ‘If the Lord has told him to curse me, who are you to stop him?’ Then David said to Abishai and to all his servants, ‘My own son is trying to kill me. Doesn’t this relative of Saul have even more reason to do so? Leave him alone and let him curse, for the Lord has told him to do it. And perhaps the Lord will see that I am being wronged and will bless me because of these curses today’” (II Samuel 16:10a, 10c-12).

“So David and his men continued down the road, and Shimei kept pace with them on a nearby hillside, cursing as he went and throwing stones at David and tossing dust into the air” (II Samuel 16:13).

David had the authority and the means to deal with anyone who dared to speak against him; yet he allowed Shemei to run alongside him, “cursing as he went and throwing stones.” David told his men, “Leave him alone… Perhaps the Lord will see that I am being wronged and will bless me because of these curses today.”

Wow! Now that’s what I call a passive response. David was getting older and, I believe, wiser. He had enough trouble on his plate with what was going on with Absalom; he needed to focus his energy on that problem. Shemei was a tiny bump in the road compared with what was going on with Absalom.

Folks, maturing means learning to pick our battles. Even more than that, it means learning to allow God to fight our battles for us.

“Anticipate your battles; fight them on your knees.” (R. A. Torrey)

Copyright © 2013
Judy Woodward Bates

BARGAINS OF THE DAY!


Bush Pimlico TV Stand for TVs up to 50"

One more day of www.Walmart.com deals. $45+ ships to your home for free on most items; many others qualify for 97-cent per item shipping to your home; & most can be shipped to your local store for pickup:

$339 BUSH PIMLICO STAND FOR UP TO 50" TV - $165.

$29.99 VIZIO XCH006 HIGH-SPEED HDMI 6' CABLE - $8.85.

$29.99 SUMAS MEDIA KID'S WIRELESS HEADPHONES - $14.98; just because they want to hear it doesn't mean you have to!

Saturday, September 28, 2013

SATURDAY'S BARGAINOMICS BIBLE PASSAGE

As David and his followers were leaving, David told Zadok, one of the chief priests (Abiathar was the other): “‘If the Lord sees fit,’ David said, ‘He will bring me back to see the Ark and the Tabernacle again. But if He is through with me, then let Him do what seems best to Him” (II Samuel 15:25a-26, NLT).

But David wasn’t resigning himself to death or exile. “The king also told Zadok the priest, ‘Look, here is my plan. You and Abiathar should return quietly to the city with your son Ahimaaz and Abiathar’s son Jonathan. I will stop at the shallows of the Jordan River and wait there for a report from you.’ So Zadok and Abiathar took the Ark of God back to the city and stayed there” (II Samuel 15:27-29). David didn’t want to be left in the dark; he wanted to know what was happening with Jerusalem and with his son Absalom.

“David walked up the road to the Mount of Olives, weeping as he went. His head was covered and his feet were bare as a sign of mourning. And the people who were with him covered their heads and wept as they climbed the hill. When someone told David that his adviser Ahithophel was now backing Absalom, David prayed, ‘O Lord, let Ahithophel give Absalom foolish advice!’” (II Samuel 15:30-31). David didn’t give up; he prayed for God’s intervention.

“When David reached the summit of the Mount of Olives where people worshiped God, Hushai the Arkite was waiting there for him. Hushai had torn his clothing and put dirt on his head as a sign of mourning. But David told him, ‘If you go with me, you will only be a burden. Return to Jerusalem and tell Absalom, ‘I will now be your adviser, O king, just as I was your father’s adviser in the past.’ Then you can frustrate and counter Ahithophel’s advice. Zadok and Abiathar, the priests, will be there. Tell them about the plans being made in the king’s palace, and they will send their sons Ahimaaz and Jonathan to tell me what is going on” (II Samuel 15:32-36).

Hushai was one of David’s most trusted advisers. David knew that he would be far more useful to him if he acted as David’s eyes and ears “in the king’s palace.” “So David’s friend Hushai returned to Jerusalem, getting there just as Absalom arrived” (II Samuel 15:37). David had a few dependable friends who would keep him apprised of Absalom’s activities.

And remember Miphibosheth, the crippled grandson of Saul that David had spared? “Mephibosheth, who was crippled in both feet, lived in Jerusalem and ate regularly at the king’s table” (II Samuel 9:13). Where was he during all this commotion?

“When David had gone a little beyond the summit of the Mount of Olives, Ziba, the servant of Mephibosheth, was waiting there for him. He had two donkeys loaded with 200 loaves of bread, 100 clusters of raisins, 100 bunches of summer fruit, and a wineskin full of wine” (II Samuel 16:1).

“‘What are these for?’ the king asked Ziba. Ziba replied, ‘The donkeys are for the king’s people to ride on, and the bread and summer fruit are for the young men to eat. The wine is for those who become exhausted in the wilderness” (II Samuel 16:2).

“‘And where is Mephibosheth, Saul’s grandson?’ the king asked him. ‘He stayed in Jerusalem,’ Ziba replied. ‘He said, ‘Today I will get back the kingdom of my grandfather Saul’” (II Samuel 16:3).

“‘In that case,’ the king told Ziba, ‘I give you everything Mephibosheth owns’” (II Samuel 16:4a).

Ah, those pesky rumors. Had Mephibosheth really turned his back on David?

If you want to know the truth, as the old saying goes, you need to go straight to the source. David needed to do that, and so do you. Just because I wrote it doesn’t mean it’s true. Read your Bible; know the Word for yourself.

We’ll find out more about Ziba and Mephibosheth later.

Copyright © 2013
Judy Woodward Bates

BARGAINS OF THE DAY!


Marvel Super Hero Squad: The Infinity Gauntlet (DS)

More fabulous buys from www.Walmart.com; some include 97-cent shipping to your home; $45-up gets FREE SHIPPING on most items; & many can be picked up in-store with no shipping charge:

BUY 2 GAMES, GET 2 FREE - total of $20 for 4 games when you choose from the games offered in this bundle; includes Nintendo 3DS, DS, & Wii.

$169 ELECTROLUX ERGORAPIDO ULTRA 2-IN-1 STICK & HANDHELD VACUUM CLEANER - $69.

$19.88 MICROMINK 88" BEAN BAG CHAIR - $9.88; 3 pattern/color choices.

Friday, September 27, 2013

FRIDAY'S BARGAINOMICS BIBLE PASSAGE

David and a band of loyal followers fled Jerusalem after learning of Absalom’s rebellion. As they were leaving, David told Zadok, one of the chief priests (Abiathar was the other): “‘If the Lord sees fit,’ David said, ‘He will bring me back to see the Ark and the Tabernacle again. But if He is through with me, then let Him do what seems best to Him” (II Samuel 15:25a-26, NLT).

I want you to think about David’s statement in light of David’s past. God forgave him his sin with Bathsheba. God forgave him the murder of Bathsheba’s husband Uriah and the other men who died alongside him. But David lived every day remembering his past sin. And I believe that was the very reason for his statement to Zadok.

David, knowing how miserably he’d failed his Lord, saw everything that was happening to him as just punishment. And God had warned David: “Because of what you have done, I will cause your own household to rebel against you” (II Samuel 12:11a). The consequences set in motion by David’s sin were coming to pass.

But what about us as New Testament believers? Yes, consequences our sins set into motion on earth can also be catastrophic, but even so, if we’ve confessed those sins, God has done what He’s promised to do: “never again remember [our] sins” (Jeremiah 31:34b).

When we look back at our pasts and think, I have no right to be teaching a Bible study class; singing in the choir; helping with a mission project; we’re giving Satan a very undeserved victory. We’re allowing our pasts to prevent us from being productive for the Kingdom today.

David wasn’t worthy of being the king; but God had forgiven him and called him to serve in that capacity. I’m not worthy of writing a Bible study. If all of you reading this could pull all the skeletons out of my closet, you wouldn’t read another word I write. But wonder of wonders, Jesus Christ has redeemed me! He’s forgiven me! He’s even forgotten every sin I’ve ever confessed to Him. And He’s willing to use me.

Folks, you’ve heard it before, but it bears repeating: it’s not your ability; it’s your availability. If you’re doing whatever you’re doing in your own strength, it ain’t worth diddly. But the least little thing you do through the power of the Holy Spirit is growing the Kingdom for God’s glory.

Don’t let your past dictate your future. If you’ve confessed it, He’s forgiven it. You have a clean slate. Fill it up with good works for Jesus.

Allow me to take a little liberty with Ephesians 2:10 and change each “we” and “us” and personalize it with “you.” I hope you’ll read it like God is speaking directly to you – because He is:

“For you are God’s masterpiece. He has created you anew in Christ Jesus, so you can do the good things He planned for you long ago.”

Copyright © 2013
Judy Woodward Bates

BARGAINS OF THE DAY!


Ben Hogan's Men's Short Sleeve Striped Print Polo

Lots of clearance on www.Walmart.com. You can choose 97-cent shipping (per item) to your home (on clothing & some other items) or free in-store pickup at any location that has the item in stock:

$15.97 BEN HOGAN MEN'S STRIPED POLO SHIRT - $7; 4 color choices; sizes S-XL.

$8.54 ACE ADJUSTABLE WRIST SUPPORT - $2.87.

$14.99 DISNEY "THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME" ANIMATED MOVIE ON DVD - $6.96.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

THURSDAY'S BARGAINOMICS BIBLE PASSAGE

David, having heard of Absalom’s rebellion, fled from Jerusalem. Along with “the king’s men” (II Samuel 15:18a, NLT) and “the king’s bodyguard,” (II Samuel 15:18c), “There were 600 men from Gath who had come with David” (II Samuel 15:18b).

“Then the king turned and said to Ittai, a leader of the men from Gath, ‘Why are you coming with us? Go on back to King Absalom, for you are a guest in Israel, a foreigner in exile. You arrived only recently, and should I force you today to wander with us? I don’t even know where we will go. Go on back and take your kinsmen with you, and may the Lord show you his unfailing love and faithfulness” (II Samuel 15:19-20).

Despite the predicament David found himself in, he still wanted to give the “men from Gath” an out if they wanted it. David, in essence, told them, “This isn’t your fight.”

“But Ittai said to the king, ‘I vow by the Lord and by your own life that I will go wherever my lord the king goes, no matter what happens – whether it means life or death” (II Samuel 15:21).

“David replied, ‘All right, come with us.’ So Ittai and all his men and their families went along” (II Samuel 15:22). David, like the rest of us, was imperfect; but he’d still proven himself to be a fair and good king overall. And because of this, many remained loyal.

But David couldn’t take all of his loyal subjects with him. A lot of people had to remain behind, soon to be subjects of the usurper Absalom. It was a sad, sad day as they watched David and his procession: “Everyone cried loudly as the king and his followers passed by. They crossed the Kidron Valley and then went out toward the wilderness” (II Samuel 15:23).

“Zadok and all the Levites also came along, carrying the Ark of the Covenant of God. They set down the Ark of God, and Abiathar offered sacrifices until everyone had passed out of the city. Then the king instructed Zadok to take the Ark of God back into the city. ‘If the Lord sees fit,’ David said, ‘He will bring me back to see the Ark and the Tabernacle again. But if He is through with me, then let Him do what seems best to Him” (II Samuel 15:24-26).

A broken and humble David allowed Abiathar to offer “sacrifices until everyone has passed out of the city.” But he didn’t allow the Ark to be taken out of Jerusalem.

“‘If the Lord sees fit,’ David said, ‘He will bring me back to see the Ark and the Tabernacle again. But if He is through with me, then let Him do what seems best to Him.” David was resigned to the will of God, whatever that turned out to be.

How hard it is to relinquish everything into the hands of God, even when we know He’s our loving, completely trustworthy Father! We don’t always know how a situation is going to turn out, but if we hold onto our faith and fully trust in God, we can face anything.

I don’t know what you’re facing right now, but your Heavenly Father does. And He loves you and wants to sustain you and help you every step of the way. David put his trust firmly in God. Will you?

“When you go through deep waters, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you”
(Isaiah 43:2).

Copyright © 2013
Judy Woodward Bates

BARGAINS OF THE DAY!


FITTED STRIPED SLUB GRAPHIC TEE - BEATS

Lots of good deals on www.Express.com, plus an extra 20% will be automatically deducted at checkout:

$49.90 FITTED SLUB STRIPE GRAPHIC TEE - $14.99; sizes XS & XL.

$34.90 LONG METAL & CHAIN FRINGE NECKLACE - $9.99.

$44.90 OVERSIZE DOUBLE TASSEL CLUTCH - $19.99; black.

$24.90 PERFORATED CENTER LADIES' SKINNY BELT - $9.90; sizes S, M, & L.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

WEDNESDAY'S BARGAINOMICS BIBLE PASSAGE

Absalom told his father David that he needed to go to “Hebron to offer a sacrifice to the Lord and fulfill a vow I made to Him” (II Samuel 15:7b, NLT). David gave his permission and Absalom left, taking “200 men from Jerusalem with him as guests, but they knew nothing of his intentions” (II Samuel 15:11).

“So Absalom went to Hebron. But while he was there, he sent secret messengers to all the tribes of Israel to stir up a rebellion against the king. ‘As soon as you hear the ram’s horn,’ his message read, ‘you are to say, ‘Absalom has been crowned king in Hebron’” (II Samuel 15:9b-10).

From the looks of things, Absalom already had a pretty good following; but what people in Jerusalem didn’t realize was that the guys who’d gone with Absalom had no idea he was plotting “a rebellion.” And Absalom was just getting started.

“While Absalom was offering the sacrifices, he sent for Ahithophel, one of David’s counselors who lived in Giloh. Soon many others also joined Absalom, and the conspiracy gained momentum” (II Samuel 15:12).
 

Ahithophel was a key man as “one of David’s counselors,” so having him on Absalom’s side would be quite a coup. Why? He was the grandfather of Bathsheba. How do we know this? Second Samuel 11:3b identifies Bathsheba as “Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam” and Second Samuel 23:34b lists “Eliam son of Ahithophel from Giloh.”
Once Ahithophel joined Absalom and realized what he was up to, he may have decided this was his chance to get even with David for how he had treated his granddaughter. Whatever the case, he was a smart choice on Absalom’s part as he started the door swinging in Absalom’s favor: “many others also joined Absalom, and the conspiracy gained momentum.”

“A messenger soon arrived in Jerusalem to tell David, ‘All Israel has joined Absalom in a conspiracy against you!’” (II Samuel 15:13).

Like most rumors, these began with a lie and then mushroomed completely out of proportion. “All Israel” hadn’t “joined Absalom in a conspiracy” against David. But David believed what he was hearing.

“‘Then we must flee at once, or it will be too late!’ David urged his men. ‘Hurry! If we get out of the city before Absalom arrives, both we and the city of Jerusalem will be spared from disaster’” (II Samuel 15:14).

Cities were often demolished during warfare and David didn’t want to see this happen to Jerusalem; so he chose to remove himself in hopes of keeping Jerusalem “from disaster.” Those who were loyal to him went along: “‘We are with you,’ his advisers replied. ‘Do what you think is best’” (II Samuel 15:15).

“So the king and all his household set out at once. He left no one behind except ten of his concubines to look after the palace. The king and all his people set out on foot, pausing at the last house to let all the king’s men move past to lead the way. There were 600 men from Gath who had come with David, along with the king’s bodyguard” (II Samuel 15:16-18).

Seems to me that David had more than enough manpower to handle Absalom. But instead, David chose to flee. Why? In spite of his failures as a father, David loved his son and didn’t want to see any harm come to him. He preferred to tuck tail and run in personal humiliation.

A father will put himself through a lot for his children. Our Heavenly Father paid the ultimate price for ours sins. What are we doing to thank Him?

Copyright © 2013
Judy Woodward Bates

BARGAINS OF THE DAY!


Silky Denim Pull-On Pants

Ladies, take a look at these sale items from www.ShopNational.com and your order receives an automatic extra 15% off at checkout!

$29.95 SILKY DENIM PULL-ON JEANS - $12.95; 2 color choices; regular & petite sizes 8-18.

$32.95 JOANNA BOUCLE JACKET - $14.95; sizes S-L.

$79.95 TOTES RED PARKA JACKET - $29.95; sizes S-XL.

$68.95 KAYANNA 100% COTTON PAJAMA SET - $29.95; sizes S-XL.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

TUESDAY'S BARGAINOMICS BIBLE PASSAGE

Absalom returned to Jerusalem only to be shunned by his father David. By the time Absalom forced a move toward reconciliation, it’s not clear how sincere it was on David’s part and it most assuredly wasn’t sincere on the part of Absalom. Absalom had allowed himself to become filled with bitterness and he was determined to take David down.

Absalom “stole the hearts of all the people of Israel” (II Samuel 15:6b, NLT). Sitting at the city gate each morning, “When people tried to bow before him, Absalom wouldn’t let them. Instead, he took them by the hand and kissed them” (II Samuel 15:5). As he built himself up with phony humility, he subtly tore his father down:

“When people brought a case to the king for judgment, Absalom would ask where in Israel they were from, and they would tell him their tribe. Then Absalom would say, ‘You’ve really got a strong case here! It’s too bad the king doesn’t have anyone to hear it. I wish I were the judge. Then everyone could bring their cases to me for judgment, and I would give them justice!’” (II Samuel 15:2b-4). Absalom was starting to look really good to the people of Israel.

During all those years since the rape of his sister Tamar, Absalom had certainly learned patience. It wasn’t until “After four years, Absalom said to the king, ‘Let me go to Hebron to offer a sacrifice to the Lord and fulfill a vow I made to him. For while your servant was at Geshur in Aram, I promised to sacrifice to the Lord in Hebron if he would bring me back to Jerusalem” (II Samuel 15:7-8).

David, clueless as to what Absalom was plotting, gave his permission: “‘All right,’ the king told him. ‘Go and fulfill your vow’” (II Samuel 15:9a).

“So Absalom went to Hebron. But while he was there, he sent secret messengers to all the tribes of Israel to stir up a rebellion against the king. ‘As soon as you hear the ram’s horn,’ his message read, ‘you are to say, ‘Absalom has been crowned king in Hebron.’ He took 200 men from Jerusalem with him as guests, but they knew nothing of his intentions” (II Samuel 15:9a-11).

How many times have we all been warned to be careful of the company we keep? “200 men from Jerusalem” went with Absalom to Hebron, “but they knew nothing of his intentions.” Since they had accompanied Absalom, though, it was naturally assumed that they were politically siding with him.

The guys who had gone along with Absalom on the trip to Hebron “to sacrifice to the Lord” soon found themselves in the midst of a conspiracy. Messengers had been covertly sent to every Israelite tribe, telling them to announce that “Absalom has been crowned king in Hebron.” Had he? No, but Absalom had made sure the whole country would believe he had.

David’s whole world was about to be turned upside down.

“What you don’t see with your eyes, don’t witness with your mouth.” (Jewish proverb)

Copyright © 2013
Judy Woodward Bates

BARGAINS OF THE DAY!


Samsonite Aramon NXT 10.1

Check out these clearance deals from www.Shop.Samsonite.com; take an extra 20% off w/code CLEAROUT.

$40 SAMSONITE ARAMON NXT 10.1" NETBOOK SLEEVE - $9.40.

$320 SAMSONITE 300 SERIES XLT 25" SPINNER LUGGAGE - $129.99. Blue; FREE SHIPPING.

$80 SAMSONITE iPAD 2 PORTFOLIO - $27.99-$30.88. 3 color choices.

Monday, September 23, 2013

MONDAY'S BARGAINOMICS BIBLE PASSAGE

David sent Joab to bring “Absalom back to Jerusalem. But the king gave this order: ‘Absalom may go to his own house, but he must never come into my presence’” (II Samuel 14:23b-24a, NLT). Not only did David extend a poor excuse for forgiveness to his son Absalom, but he didn’t even call him “son” when he sent for him. He told Joab, “go and bring back the young man Absalom” (II Samuel 14:21b).

Absalom had waited “two years” (II Samuel 13:23a) to avenge his sister’s rape; and he’d seen that their father David had no intentions of inflicting any sort of punishment on Amnon. That’s when he took matters into his own hands.

And paid a price for it. Absalom lived as an exile “in Geshur for three years” (II Samuel 13:38b) and then “in Jerusalem for two years” but “never got to see the king” (II Samuel 14:28). So Absalom had seven years of pain and bitterness and anger bottled up inside him.

Absalom sent Joab to speak to David on his behalf: “Ask the king why he brought me back from Geshur if he didn’t intend to see me. I might as well have stayed there. Let me see the king; if he finds me guilty of anything, then let him kill me” (II Samuel 14:32).

“So Joab told the king what Absalom had said. Then at last David summoned Absalom, who came and bowed low before the king, and the king kissed him” (II Samuel 14:33).

As I said yesterday, whether David was sincere or not at this point, it was a case of too little too late. Absalom’s hate-filled heart didn’t want to be reconciled with his father – he merely wanted his father to believe that was his intent. Just what was Absalom up to?

“After this, Absalom bought a chariot and horses, and he hired fifty bodyguards to run ahead of him. He got up early every morning and went out to the gate of the city. When people brought a case to the king for judgment, Absalom would ask where in Israel they were from, and they would tell him their tribe. Then Absalom would say, ‘You’ve really got a strong case here! It’s too bad the king doesn’t have anyone to hear it. I wish I were the judge. Then everyone could bring their cases to me for judgment, and I would give them justice!’” (II Samuel 15:1-4).

Absalom, it seems, had become quite the politician. “When people tried to bow before him, Absalom wouldn’t let them. Instead, he took them by the hand and kissed them. Absalom did this with everyone who came to the king for judgment, and so he stole the hearts of all the people of Israel” (II Samuel 15:5-6).

Absalom was headed down a path of no return. Had David properly disciplined his children; had he extended to Absalom the same measure of forgiveness that David had himself received from God; who knows how differently things might have turned out?

We’ll see what Absalom is up to tomorrow.

“Forgiveness is the economy of the heart... forgiveness saves the expense of anger, the cost of hatred, the waste of spirits.” (Hannah More)

“Throughout life people will make you mad, disrespect you and treat you bad. Let God deal with the things they do, ‘cause hate in your heart will consume you.” (Will Smith)

Copyright © 2013
Judy Woodward Bates

BARGAINS OF THE DAY!


Black Rivet Leather Cycle Jacket - Wilsons Leather

Just in time for fall weather, www.WilsonsLeather.com has a great sale going on:

$579.99 BLACK RIVER MEN'S LEATHER MOTORCYCLE JACKET - $173.96; sizes L & XL.

$229.99 NINE WEST LADIES' FABRIC A-LINE JACKET - $68.96; 2 color choices; sizes S-XL.

$99.99 WILSONS ELLIE IV FLORAL FABRIC BELTED SHOPPER TOTE/HANDBAG - $29.96.

$34.99 WILSONS SOPHIA PATCHWORK LEATHER WRISTLET - $13.95.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

SUNDAY'S BARGAINOMICS BIBLE PASSAGE

David sent Joab to bring “Absalom back to Jerusalem. But the king gave this order: ‘Absalom may go to his own house, but he must never come into my presence.’ So Absalom did not see the king” (II Samuel 14:23b-24, NLT).

David’s actions showed that he had only partially forgiven Absalom. His silence showed that he wasn’t willing to even talk about their problems. I could name a whole lot of husbands and wives who live with spouses who also deal with conflicts by saying, “I don’t want to talk about it” – or worse yet, by giving their spouses the silent treatment. The silence becomes a wall that thickens with every passing day. And every passing day creates more pain.

This is where Absalom found himself. But like so many others who live with the brutality of partial forgiveness, Absalom went on with his life, possibly not even realizing how he was holding onto his pain and allowing it change him:

“Now Absalom was praised as the most handsome man in all Israel. He was flawless from head to foot. He cut his hair only once a year, and then only because it was so heavy. When he weighed it out, it came to five pounds! He had three sons and one daughter. His daughter’s name was Tamar, and she was very beautiful” (II Samuel 14:25-27).

Absalom was “the most handsome man in all Israel.” And he’d shown honor to his sister Tamar by naming his daughter after her. Absalom could have been so happy to be back home if only his father had acknowledged his existence.

However, “Absalom lived in Jerusalem for two years” and still “he never got to see the king” (II Samuel 14:28). So Absalom decided to take action. He “Absalom sent for Joab to ask him to intercede for him, but Joab refused to come. Absalom sent for him a second time, but again Joab refused to come” (II Samuel 14:29).

Joab, I think, figured he’d done more than his part already to mend fences between Absalom and his father. But Absalom was determined to get Joab’s attention:

“So Absalom said to his servants, ‘Go and set fire to Joab’s barley field, the field next to mine.’ So they set his field on fire, as Absalom had commanded. Then Joab came to Absalom at his house and demanded, ‘Why did your servants set my field on fire?’” (II Samuel 14:30-31).

Joab, the one person who’d thought enough of Absalom to intercede for him in the first place, didn’t deserve to have his crops burned to the ground. Burning a person’s fields wasn’t the behavior of a decent human being. But three years of the silent treatment in Geshur and two more years in Jerusalem had made Absalom a bitter man. Yes, he had a choice. Yes, he could have let go of his pain and anger; but Absalom didn’t do that. And because he didn’t, he demanded and expected to have his way with Joab.

Absalom told Joab: “I wanted you to ask the king why he brought me back from Geshur if he didn’t intend to see me. I might as well have stayed there. Let me see the king; if he finds me guilty of anything, then let him kill me” (II Samuel 14:32).

“So Joab told the king what Absalom had said. Then at last David summoned Absalom, who came and bowed low before the king, and the king kissed him” (II Samuel 14:33).

Whether David was sincere or not at this point, it was a case of too little too late. Absalom had chosen the dark path of bitterness.

“Every time we inwardly submit to the strongholds of fear, bitterness and pride, we are bowing to the rulers of darkness. Each of these idols must be smashed, splintered, and obliterated from the landscape of our hearts.” (Francis Frangipane)

Copyright © 2013
Judy Woodward Bates

BARGAINS OF THE DAY!


Rhythm Heaven Fever (Nintendo Wii)

Here are some impressive game deals from www.Target.com, and there's FREE SHIPPING for Red Card holders (a free debit card thru Target):

$26.99 RHYTHM HEAVEN FEVER for NINTENDO Wii - $10. Rated E for everyone.

$19.99 MICROSOFT "AGE OF EMPIRES" COMPUTER GAME CD - $7.50. Rated E for everyone.

$35.99 STEEL DIVER for NINTENDO 3DS - $10. Rate E10+ for ages 10-up.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

SATURDAY'S BARGAINOMICS BIBLE PASSAGE

Joab sent “a woman from Tekoa” (II Samuel 14:1b, NLT) to King David, telling her exactly what to say to him. She told him a fictitious tale about having two sons, one of whom killed the other during an argument. “Then she said, ‘Please swear to me by the Lord your God that you won’t let anyone take vengeance against my son. I want no more bloodshed’” (II Samuel 14:11a).

David gave her his words that her son wouldn’t be killed: “‘As surely as the Lord lives,’ he replied, ‘not a hair on your son’s head will be disturbed!’” (II Samuel 14:11b).

And that’s when the woman revealed the truth of her mission: “‘Why don’t you do as much for the people of God as you have promised to do for me? You have convicted yourself in making this decision, because you have refused to bring home your own banished son’” (II Samuel 14:13). In other words, do as much for your own son as you were willing to do for mine.

It’s important to note here precisely what Joab had instructed the woman to say: “I want no more bloodshed.” Joab wasn’t suggesting that Absalom’s murder of Amnon be ignored; he was simply saying that, considering Absalom had meted out punishment David should have issued for Amnon’s crime, he shouldn’t have to die for Amnon’s murder – there were less severe ways of disciplining Absalom for his actions.

So how does David respond? “‘I must know one thing,’ the king replied, ‘and tell me the truth. Did Joab put you up to this?’” (II Samuel 14:18a, 19a).

“And the woman replied, ‘Yes, Joab sent me and told me what to say. He did it to place the matter before you in a different light’” (II Samuel 14:19b, d; 20a).

“So the king sent for Joab and told him, ‘All right, go and bring back the young man Absalom’”
(II Samuel 14:21).

“Then Joab went to Geshur and brought Absalom back to Jerusalem. But the king gave this order: ‘Absalom may go to his own house, but he must never come into my presence.’ So Absalom did not see the king”
(II Samuel 14:23-24).

David, the man who committed adultery; the man who committed murder; the man whose crimes were worthy of death; God had given full pardon. As David himself had written, “All my guilt is gone” (Psalm 32:5c). But David didn’t extend this same forgiveness to Absalom. Note what he called him when he sent Joab to get him: “the young man,” not “my son.”

Absalom may have been brought back to Jerusalem at his own father’s instructions, but he was still in exile. An outcast. And everybody knew it.

We saw from Tamar’s rape and Amnon’s murder how quickly news – and gossip – spread. Tamar didn’t have to tell Absalom what had happened; he came to her, asking “Is it true that Amnon has been with you?” (II Samuel 13:20a). The news of Amnon’s murder even beat the rest of the king’s sons back to Jerusalem. There was no way every person living under David’s rule didn’t know Absalom was forbidden to see his own father.

Aren’t you glad God doesn’t extend partial forgiveness? This is why the Bible repeatedly warns us not to do it, either. Just one example: “Forgive us our sins, as we have forgiven those who sin against us” (Jesus speaking, The Lord’s Prayer, Matthew 6:12).

I don’t want my sins partially forgiven, do you? Jesus says they’re forgiven to the same degree “as we have forgiven those who sin against us.”

Copyright © 2013
Judy Woodward Bates

BARGAINS OF THE DAY!


Jeweled Flower Wall Hooks

More great buys from www.Kohls.com:

$99.99 JEWELED FLOWERS WALL HOOKS - $39.99. 12"x34".

$24.99 CHEVRON PATTERN MEMO BOARD - $7.49. 19"x16".

$19.99 CLASS OF 2013 PHOTO ALBUM - $3.99.

$39.99 SONOMA ULTIMATE PERFORMANCE STRIPED BEACH TOWEL - $11.99. 40"x70" in 4 color choices.

Friday, September 20, 2013

FRIDAY'S BARGAINOMICS BIBLE PASSAGE

Absalom, having avenged his sister’s rape by their own half-brother Amnon, “fled to his grandfather, Talmai son of Ammihud, the king of Geshur” and “stayed there in Geshur for three years” (II Samuel 13:37b-38). During that time, “King David, now reconciled to Amnon’s death, longed to be reunited with his son Absalom” (II Samuel 13:39, NLT).

“Joab realized how much the king longed to see Absalom. So he sent for a woman from Tekoa who had a reputation for great wisdom. He said to her, ‘Pretend you are in mourning; wear mourning clothes and don’t put on lotions. Act like a woman who has been mourning for the dead for a long time. Then go to the king and tell him the story I am about to tell you.’ Then Joab told her what to say” (II Samuel 14:1-3).

“When the woman from Tekoa approached the king, she bowed with her face to the ground in deep respect and cried out, ‘O king! Help me!’ ‘What’s the trouble?’ the king asked” (II Samuel 14:4-5).

“‘Alas, I am a widow!’ she replied. ‘My husband is dead. My two sons had a fight out in the field. And since no one was there to stop it, one of them was killed. Now the rest of the family is demanding, ‘Let us have your son. We will execute him for murdering his brother. He doesn’t deserve to inherit his family’s property.’ They want to extinguish the only coal I have left, and my husband’s name and family will disappear from the face of the earth’”
(II Samuel 14:6-7).

“‘Leave it to me,’ the king told her. ‘Go home, and I’ll see to it that no one touches him.’ ‘Oh, thank you, my lord the king,’ the woman from Tekoa replied. ‘If you are criticized for helping me, let the blame fall on me and on my father’s house, and let the king and his throne be innocent.’ ‘If anyone objects,’ the king said, ‘bring him to me. I can assure you he will never complain again!’”
(II Samuel 14:8-10).

“Then she said, ‘Please swear to me by the Lord your God that you won’t let anyone take vengeance against my son. I want no more bloodshed.’ ‘As surely as the Lord lives,’ he replied, ‘not a hair on your son’s head will be disturbed!’” (II Samuel 14:11).

“‘Please allow me to ask one more thing of my lord the king,’ she said. ‘Go ahead and speak,’ he responded. She replied, ‘Why don’t you do as much for the people of God as you have promised to do for me? You have convicted yourself in making this decision, because you have refused to bring home your own banished son. All of us must die eventually. Our lives are like water spilled out on the ground, which cannot be gathered up again. But God does not just sweep life away; instead, He devises ways to bring us back when we have been separated from Him’”
(II Samuel 14:12-14).

“God does not just sweep life away; instead, He devises ways to bring us back when we have been separated from Him.”
David’s sin with Bathsheba had separated David from close fellowship with God. David’s own words confessed his wrongdoing: “Against You, and You alone, have I sinned; I have done what is evil in Your sight” (Psalm 51:12a). He also showed us how he received God’s forgiveness: “I confessed all my sins to You… And You forgave me! All my guilt is gone” (Psalm 32:5a, c).

“All my guilt is gone.” God didn’t partially forgive David – He completely forgave Him. But would David extend to Absalom this same level of forgiveness?

“Forgiveness is not that stripe which says, ‘I will forgive, but not forget.’ It is not to bury the hatchet with the handle sticking out of the ground, so you can grasp it the minute you want it.” (D. L. Moody)

Copyright © 2013
Judy Woodward Bates

BARGAINS OF THE DAY!


Loft Style Scribble 5-pc. Comforter Set - Full/Queen

Thought you might be interested in some of these markdowns from www.Kohls.com:

$179.99 LOFT STYLE SCRIBBLE 5-PC FULL/QUEEN COMFORTER SET - $71.99. $219.99 KING version - $87.99.

$109.99 HOME CLASSICS REVERSIBLE DOWN-ALTERNATIVE FULL/QUEEN COMFORTER - $32.99.

$99.99 KAY LINDA BALLERINA FULL-SIZE COMFORTER SET - $30. Very feminine!

Thursday, September 19, 2013

THURSDAY'S BARGAINOMICS BIBLE PASSAGE

After much plotting and planning, Absalom invited all his brothers to a big banquet during which Absalom had his half-brother Amnon murdered in retaliation for the rape of his sister Tamar (Amnon’s half-sister). David, who had doted on Amnon as his firstborn and heir to the throne, had done nothing to punish Amnon for his unthinkable deed, so Absalom had taken matters into his own hands.

When Amnon was murdered, “the other sons of the king jumped on their mules and fled” (II Samuel 13:29b, NLT). False rumors reached Jerusalem before they did: “Absalom has killed all the king’s sons” (II Samuel 13:30b).

But Jonadab, the very one who’d cooked up the plan for Amnon to take advantage of Tamar, flippantly announced to King David, “It was only Amnon!” (II Samuel 13:32a). So much for Jonadab’s sentiment about his cousin and friend.

“Meanwhile Absalom escaped. Then the watchman on the Jerusalem wall saw a great crowd coming down the hill on the road from the west. He ran to tell the king, ‘I see a crowd of people coming from the Horonaim road along the side of the hill’” (II Samuel 13:34).

“‘Look!’ Jonadab told the king. ‘There they are now! The king’s sons are coming, just as I said’”
(II Samuel 13:35).

“They soon arrived, weeping and sobbing, and the king and all his servants wept bitterly with them. And David mourned many days for his son Amnon” (II Samuel 13:36-37a).

“Absalom fled to his grandfather, Talmai son of Ammihud, the king of Geshur. He stayed there in Geshur for three years” (II Samuel 13:37b-38).

“For three years” Absalom lived in exile in the land of his maternal grandfather, “the king of Geshur.” Why didn’t Absalom simply flee to one of the cities of refuge? The Lord had instructed Moses to establish these as “places of protection from a dead person’s relatives who want to avenge the death” (Numbers 35:12a). Because Absalom’s murder of Amnon had been intentional, and cities of refuge were for those who had “killed someone accidentally” (Numbers 35:11b).

David knew that Levitical law called for punishment if a “man violated his sister” (Leviticus 20:17b) and yet the Bible doesn’t tell us that David did so much as reprimand Amnon. Three years gave him a lot of time to think about how he had failed to do right by his daughter Tamar and to let go of his hurt and anger toward Absalom.

“King David, now reconciled to Amnon’s death, longed to be reunited with his son Absalom”
(II Samuel 13:39).

David missed Absalom and wanted him back in his life. But just as he had let Amnon get away with his evil actions, he was willing to do the same thing with Absalom. David’s refusal to discipline Absalom was going to be costly.

“Don’t fail to discipline your children”
(Proverbs 23:13a).

Copyright © 2013
Judy Woodward Bates

BARGAINS OF THE DAY!


Pre-Lit Fir Christmas Tree with LED Lights
Here are some buys from www.JCPenney.com; most orders of $99 or more qualify for FREE SHIPPING to your home; orders of $25 or more get FREE SHIPPING to your nearest store:

$400-$800 PRE-LIT FIR CHRISTMAS TREES - $89.99-$229.99.

 $295 DESIGN BY CONRAN TULLIA BLUE NESTING TABLES - $139.

$125 MODERN DRAMA BLACK FACETED TABLE LAMP - $50.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

WEDNESDAY'S BARGAINOMICS BIBLE PASSAGE

Absalom, refusing to let God deal with Amnon, took matters into his own hands: “At Absalom’s signal they murdered Amnon. Then the other sons of the king jumped on their mules and fled” (II Samuel 13:29, NLT).

“As they were on the way back to Jerusalem, this report reached David: ‘Absalom has killed all the king’s sons; not one is left alive!’ The king got up, tore his robe, and threw himself on the ground. His advisers also tore their clothes in horror and sorrow” (II Samuel 13:30-31).

As we saw with Tamar, the tearing of one’s clothes was a sign of great sorrow. David was devastated by the news he received. But as is so often the case, the news was untrue.

Why would David think that Absalom had “killed all the king’s sons?” Because it was a common practice. If you wanted to insure you’d be next on the throne, the way to do it was to knock off all the competition. Absalom, however, being the firstborn, was already a shoe-in for the job and he certainly wouldn’t have wanted to incur his father’s disfavor. So there was really no basis for what had been told; someone had simply lied – which is how all rumors get started.

Was Absalom so foolish as to think he could pull off Amnon’s murder in front of so many witnesses without being blamed for it? No. Remember, Absalom had also invited “the king and his servants” (II Samuel 13:24b). David had merely declined the invitation.

Absalom intentionally killed Amnon in the presence of “all the king’s sons.” He had hoped to do so in front of their father, also. Why? He was making a statement: every single one of you knew what happened to our sister, but not a one of you did anything about it. Well, I have; and all of you are my witnesses.

So David and his advisers were wild with grief when “Jonadab, the son of David’s brother Shimea, arrived and said, ‘No, don’t believe that all the king’s sons have been killed! It was only Amnon!’” (II Samuel 13:32a).

Jonadab, the very one who’d cooked up the plan for Amnon to take advantage of Tamar, flippantly says, “It was only Amnon!” Like tossing out a broken pot, the self-absorbed Jonadab writes off his friend and cousin Amnon; and yes, he also allays the king’s fears about his other sons.

And then he offers the explanation that David probably already knew in his heart: “Absalom has been plotting this ever since Amnon raped his sister Tamar” (II Samuel 13:32b).

Remember God’s message the prophet Nathan delivered to David? “Because of what you have done, I will cause your own household to rebel against you” (II Samuel 12:11).

David was seeing his chickens come home to roost. And it was only just beginning.

“Sin is not just breaking God's laws; it is breaking His heart.” (Adrian Rogers)

Copyright © 2013
Judy Woodward Bates

BARGAINS OF THE DAY!


Becoming

Sweet $6 deals for members only at www.FamilyChristian.com. Not a member? Joining is FREE & so is SHIPPING to your nearest store or to your home w/$50 or more:

$14.99 "BECOMING" CD by YOLANDA ADAMS.

$12.99 "DESTINY: LET GOD USE YOU LIKE HE MADE YOU" BOOK by TONY EVANS.

$19.99 "HIDING IN PLAIN SIGHT" MOVIE on DVD.

TUESDAY'S BARGAINOMICS BIBLE PASSAGE

“Get out of here!” (II Samuel 13:15c, NLT), Amnon screamed at Tamar. Tamar, traumatized beyond what most of us can imagine, is booted out into the street like a common prostitute. Her father the king did absolutely nothing to defend or avenge her.

Only her brother Absalom showed her compassion: “Well, my sister, keep quiet for now, since he’s your brother. Don’t you worry about it” (II Samuel 13:20b).

Absalom, however, had no intentions of letting it go. “Though Absalom never spoke to Amnon about this, he hated Amnon deeply because of what he had done to his sister” (II Samuel 13:22).

You’ve heard it said: revenge is a dish best served cold. That’s exactly what happened with Amnon:

“Two years later, when Absalom’s sheep were being sheared at Baal-hazor near Ephraim, Absalom invited all the king’s sons to come to a feast. He went to the king and said, ‘My sheep-shearers are now at work. Would the king and his servants please come to celebrate the occasion with me?’” (II Samuel 13:23-24).

“The king replied, ‘No, my son. If we all came, we would be too much of a burden on you.’ Absalom pressed him, but the king would not come, though he gave Absalom his blessing” (II Samuel 13:25).

“‘Well, then,’ Absalom said, ‘if you can’t come, how about sending my brother Amnon with us?’”
(II Samuel 13:26a).

“‘Why Amnon?’ the king asked. But Absalom kept on pressing the king until he finally agreed to let all his sons attend, including Amnon. So Absalom prepared a feast fit for a king” (II Samuel 13:26b-27).

“Absalom told his men, ‘Wait until Amnon gets drunk; then at my signal, kill him! Don’t be afraid. I’m the one who has given the command. Take courage and do it!’ So at Absalom’s signal they murdered Amnon. Then the other sons of the king jumped on their mules and fled” (II Samuel 13:28-29).

Absalom had to do some fast talking to get David to agree to send Amnon to this shindig. But with Absalom as the favorite son, David simply wouldn’t refuse.

Notice Absalom’s instructions to his men: “Wait until Amnon gets drunk.” Amnon was clearly known for being self-absorbed and overindulgent. Absalom didn’t have to instruct anyone to keep the liquor coming – he knew that Amnon would drink himself silly.

Amnon, thinking only of the fact that he was partying on someone else’s nickel, probably never gave one thought to the fact that Absalom was Tamar’s full brother or that he had taken her into his household. After throwing her out of his house in disgrace, he’d never given Tamar as much as a fleeting thought. Amnon was definitely the all-about-me show.

Amnon’s sin set in motion his own death. But wasn’t God capable of dealing with Amnon? Apparently Absalom thought He needed a helping hand. And Absalom’s revenge would set more heartache into motion.

“Revenge... is like a rolling stone, which, when a man hath forced up a hill, will return upon him with a greater violence, and break those bones whose sinews gave it motion.” (Albert Schweitzer)

Copyright © 2013
Judy Woodward Bates

BARGAINS OF THE DAY!


Love Came Down - Star Tea Light Holder image

Get in on these bargains from www.Dayspring.com:

$29.99 "LOVE CAME DOWN" STAR-SHAPED TEA LIGHT HOLDER - $9.99; front says "Love came down;" back says "Jesus, Luke 2:11, KJV."

$9.99 PEANUTS ADVENT CHRISTMAS CALENDAR - $1.99.

$24.99 "REDEEMED" TRULY BLESSED INSULATED LUNCH BAG - $9.99. Scripture inside the bag: "From the fullness of His grace we have all received one blessing after another."  John 1:16, NIV.

Monday, September 16, 2013

MONDAY'S BARGAINOMICS BIBLE PASSAGE

After brutally attacking his half-sister Tamar, Amnon’s “love” obsession immediately turned to “turned to hate” (II Samuel 13:15b, NLT). “Get out of here!” (II Samuel 13:15c), Amnon screamed at Tamar.

The very person Amnon had been convinced he desperately wanted was now completely repulsive to him. How many people, having obtained the wrongful thing they were so certain they wanted, have reacted in the very same way? Sin blinds; then, once it’s sucked you into its clutches, removes the blindfold and unveils the ugly reality.

But what was done was done. “‘No, no!’ Tamar cried. ‘Sending me away now is worse than what you’ve already done to me.’ But Amnon wouldn’t listen to her. He shouted for his servant and demanded, ‘Throw this woman out, and lock the door behind her!’ So the servant put her out and locked the door behind her” (II Samuel 13:16-18a).

Like a common prostitute, like so much trash, Amnon kicked Tamar to the curb. While the servants could have speculated on why Amnon wanted to be alone with Tamar, they wouldn’t have had any evidence to back up their suspicions had Amnon kept his evil deed a private matter. At least, had he done that much for Tamar, she wouldn’t have been publicly humiliated and might have still been able to be given in marriage.

As it was, though, the whole town would soon know about Tamar leaving her half-brother’s home in bed-wrinkled clothing. Her reputation was ruined and, with it, any chances of ever having a husband.

Tamar “was wearing a long, beautiful robe, as was the custom in those days for the king’s virgin daughters. But now Tamar tore her robe and put ashes on her head. And then, with her face in her hands, she went away crying” (II Samuel 13:18b-19).

Tamar’s actions in tearing “her robe” and putting “ashes on her head” were signs of mourning. But even her grief and tears didn’t tell the story of what had happened. Amnon’s cold-hearted ejection of his traumatized half-sister still hinted, if not screamed, that she was simply the spurned aggressor.

The rumor mill got started in a hurry, but one person who heard Amnon’s version of the story knew Tamar well enough to know she would never have willingly done such a thing. “Her brother Absalom saw her and asked, ‘Is it true that Amnon has been with you? Well, my sister, keep quiet for now, since he’s your brother. Don’t you worry about it.’ So Tamar lived as a desolate woman in her brother Absalom’s house” (II Samuel 13:20).

There was no way to erase Tamar’s disgrace. There was no way to recover Tamar’s reputation. But Absalom did the best he could; he brought her into his home and under his protection.

What about dear ol’ Dad? What was David’s reaction? “When King David heard what had happened, he was very angry” (II Samuel 13:21).

Big whoop. How to explain David’s inaction? The Septuagint (Greek version of the Old Testament) adds this commentary: “But he saddened not the spirit of his son Amnon, because he loved him, because he was his first-born.” David didn’t want to upset his favored son and heir to the throne.

David also knew, with no witnesses, it was Tamar’s word against Amnon’s, and that would never hold up in a court of law. David’s top reason, though, had to be his own track record, which Amnon would have no doubt thrown in his father’s face.

In other words, Amnon was going to get away with it. Or was he?

“I’m against sin. I’ll kick it as long as I’ve got a foot, and I’ll fight it as long as I’ve got a fist. I’ll butt it as long as I’ve got a head. I’ll bite it as long as I’ve got a tooth. And when I’m old and fistless and footless and toothless, I’ll gum it till I go home to Glory and it goes home to perdition!” (Billy Sunday)

Copyright © 2013
Judy Woodward Bates

BARGAINS OF THE DAY!


Bright Large Hole Disk Beads -16mm

You might like these sale items from www.TerrysVillage.com; TODAY ONLY, get FREE SHIPPING on ANY order w/code WBSTTV:

$6.25 16MM GLASS BEADS w/4MM HOLES, ASSORTED COLORS - PKG OF 6 - $1.99.

$5 REMARKS MISTLETOE STICKER BOOK - $1.99; 72 assorted stickers perfect for scrapbookers.

$10 CAT CHRISTMAS ORNAMENT - $3.49. Cat motif resin ornament you can write your pet's name on.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

SUNDAY'S BARGAINOMICS BIBLE PASSAGE

Yesterday we saw how Amnon’s “love” obsession with Tamar, his half-sister, quickly “turned to hate” (II Samuel 13:15b, NLT) after he had raped her. Previously I’d pointed out that Amnon wasn’t the only one in the family who may have committed such an atrocity. Although the Bible doesn’t give us the details, Bathsheba was very likely an unwilling participant when David had her brought to his bedroom.

While we see Amnon’s immediate response to his sorry actions, we aren’t told how David felt after having his way with Bathsheba. Or do we? Bible scholars can’t pinpoint the exact time when David wrote Psalms 32, 38 and 51, but most agree that he wrote them after his illicit one-night stand with Bathsheba. Let’s read a little of what David was feeling:

“Your arrows have struck deep, and Your blows are crushing me. Because of Your anger, my whole body is sick; my health is broken because of my sins. My guilt overwhelms me – it is a burden too heavy to bear. I am exhausted and completely crushed. My groans come from an anguished heart” (Psalm 38:2-4, 8).

As a person on whom the Holy Spirit rested, David was in agony because of the guilt of his sin. Ever been there? I sure have. As a Holy Spirit-filled New Testament believer, I’ve been convicted so many times of things I’ve done and things I’ve failed to do or refused to do. And until I ‘fess it and fix it, the guilt absolutely eats me alive.

And I wouldn’t be one hundred percent honest if I didn’t also say I’ve done things I couldn’t fix or undo. That’s where David was. All he could do was plead for the mercy of God:

“Wash me clean from my guilt. Purify me from my sin. For I recognize my rebellion; it haunts me day and night. Against You, and You alone, have I sinned; I have done what is evil in Your sight. Purify me from my sins, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow”
(Psalm 51:2-4a, 7).

God heard and answered David’s prayer. David wrote out his open confession to not only warn others about the pain of sin, but to tell them of the incredible forgiveness of our Heavenly Father:

“Oh, what joy for those whose disobedience is forgiven, whose sin is put out of sight! Yes, what joy for those whose record the Lord has cleared of guilt, whose lives are lived in complete honesty! When I refused to confess my sin, my body wasted away, and I groaned all day long. Day and night Your hand of discipline was heavy on me. My strength evaporated like water in the summer heat. Finally, I confessed all my sins to You and stopped trying to hide my guilt. I said to myself, ‘I will confess my rebellion to the Lord.’ And You forgave me! All my guilt is gone” (Psalm 32:1-5).

“All my guilt is gone.”
Not a little of it. Not a lot of it. All of it. David received the amazing unconditional forgiveness of God.

Still, God’s pardon of David didn’t halt the things his sin had set in motion.

“If I had a brother who had been murdered, what would you think of me if I...daily consorted with the assassin who drove the dagger into my brother’s heart; surely I too must be an accomplice in the crime. Sin murdered Christ; will you be a friend to it?” (Charles Spurgeon)

Copyright © 2013
Judy Woodward Bates

BARGAINS OF THE DAY!


Bright flowers adorn our crewneck print tee shirt.

Take a look at these deals from www.Orvis.com; limited supplies, so order fast; some of these prices are good today only:

$49 LADIES' CREWNECK PRINT TEE - $19; 3 color choices; sizes XS-XL.

$49 LADIES' ANCHOR PRINT STRIPED TEE - $14.25; 2 color choices; sizes XS-XL.

$149 STETSON MEN'S VENTED STRAW PANAMA HAT - $59.60; sizes M-XL.

$39 SET OF 4 SNOWMEN FIGURINES - 4.5" high - $19.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

SATURDAY'S BARGAINOMICS BIBLE PASSAGE

Amnon let a sinful desire dominate his life. He became so focused on Tamar, his half-sister, that she was all he thought about. She was all he wanted. He actually thought he was “in love” (II Samuel 13:3b, NLT).

But what does the Bible say about love? “Love is patient and kind. It does not demand its own way” (I Corinthians 13:4a, 5a).

Amnon didn’t know the first thing about love. He simply wanted what he wanted. So as Tamar fought against him with every ounce of her being, “he was stronger than she was” (II Samuel 13:14b) and so “he raped her” (II Samuel 13:14c).

How’d Amnon pull off his evil scheme? By following the advice of “a very crafty friend – his cousin Jonadab” (II Samuel 13:3a).

Interesting how the description of Jonadab is so close to that of someone we meet much earlier in Scripture: “The serpent was more crafty than any” (Genesis 3:1a, NIV). Satan, disguised as a serpent, convinced Adam and Eve to disobey God. And ever since then, he’s been doing the same thing to anyone who’ll listen.

Amnon certainly listened. But once he had given into temptation, Satan had accomplished what he’d set out to do in that instance; so the object of Amnon’s “love” was immediately no longer desirable: “Then suddenly Amnon’s love turned to hate, and he hated her even more than he had loved her” (II Samuel 13:15, NLT).

I can’t speak from the male viewpoint, but more times than I’d care to count, I’ve talked to a woman who gave into sexual temptation. Believing she was madly in love; believing she was going to have an exciting tryst; believing she was going to get even with her cheating spouse; in every case, these women involved themselves in sinful relationships that, instead of making them feel loved or adventurous, left them feeling empty and dirty.

Amnon had thought his strong desire for Tamar was “love.” In spite of being the king’s son and the probable heir to the throne (since he was David’s eldest), I believe Amnon’s life was an empty one. Searching for fulfillment, Amnon had been, as an old country song reminds us, “looking for love in all the wrong places.” And the more he searched in those “wrong places,” the emptier and angrier he became.

Tamar’s humiliation wasn’t finished.

There is no self-contained sin – it always hurts innocent people.

“Temptation usually comes in through a door that has deliberately been left open.” (authorship unknown)

Copyright © 2013
Judy Woodward Bates

BARGAINS OF THE DAY!


 Casserole Crazy (Bargain - Paperback)

If you enjoy cookbooks, you'll love these deals from www.BooksAMillion.com:

$15.95 CASSEROLE CRAZY: HOT STUFF FOR YOUR OVEN! - $3.97.

$19.95 DEEP SOUTH STAPLES: OR HOW TO SURVIVE IN A SOUTHERN KITCHEN WITHOUT A CAN OF CREAM OF MUSHROOM SOUP - $4.97.

$17.95 TASTE OF HOME COMFORT FOOD DIET COOKBOOK - $5.97.

$27.99 400 CALORIE FIX COOKBOOKS: 400 ALL-NEW, SIMPLY SATISFYING MEALS - $7.97.

Friday, September 13, 2013

FRIDAY'S BARGAINOMICS BIBLE PASSAGE

Amnon, in lust with his half-sister Tamar, faked being sick and convinced his father David to “let my sister Tamar come and cook my favorite dish as I watch. Then I can eat it from her own hands” (II Samuel 13:6, NLT). David, apparently oblivious to how many red flags Amnon’s request should have raised, sent Tamar to him.

“When Tamar arrived at Amnon’s house, she went to the place where he was lying down so he could watch her mix some dough. Then she baked his favorite dish for him. But when she set the serving tray before him, he refused to eat. ‘Everyone get out of here,’ Amnon told his servants. So they all left” (II Samuel 13:8-9).

Amnon had his own house. Amnon had his own servants; and when he sent them all away, I have no doubt that an icy chill ran down Tamar’s spine. And this is strictly speculation, but I believe Tamar already knew her half-brother’s reputation – and that made the innocent young girl even more terrified.

But Tamar was a female living in a male-dominated environment; she’d had no say-so when her father had sent her to Amnon. She simply wanted to hand over the food and get out of there. But Ammon “said to Tamar, ‘Now bring the food into my bedroom and feed it to me here.’ So Tamar took his favorite dish to him. But as she was feeding him, he grabbed her and demanded, ‘Come to bed with me, my darling sister” (II Samuel 13:10-11).

“‘No, my brother!’ she cried. ‘Don’t be foolish! Don’t do this to me! Such wicked things aren’t done in Israel. Where could I go in my shame? And you would be called one of the greatest fools in Israel. Please, just speak to the king about it, and he will let you marry me’” (II Samuel 13:12-13).

Now you know and I know that Tamar had zero desire to marry Amnon. We also know that Tamar knew the law and that her father would never consent to such a marriage. What Tamar was doing was pleading for her life. For her dignity. For her purity. And then she fought for it.

“But Amnon wouldn’t listen to her, and since he was stronger than she was, he raped her”
(II Samuel 13:14).

Amnon refused to control his emotions. Instead, Amnon willfully fulfilled his evil lust.

But who had done likewise? His father. Although the Bible doesn’t give us the details, Bathsheba was another man’s wife and it’s very unlikely that she was a willing participant when David had her brought to his bedroom.

David repented. God forgave him. But the example he set before his children could never be erased.

Carefully and prayerfully think before you speak. If what you’re about to say won’t honor Jesus, don’t say it. Carefully and prayerfully think before you act. If the action you’re considering will dishonor Jesus, don’t do it.

“We all make choices, but in the end our choices make us.” (Ken Levine)

Copyright © 2013
Judy Woodward Bates

BARGAINS OF THE DAY!



www.ColdwaterCreek.com has a huge sale going on right now, with extra discounts of up to 70% off already discounted prices:

$49.95 WATERFALL FRONT VEST - $9.99; black; one size fits most.

$69.95 BRAIDED HANDLE TOTE - $24.99; yellow.

$59.95 BEADED CORD BELT - $11.99; 2 color choices; sizes S/M & L/XL.

$19.95 DOUBLE CRINKLE SCARF - $5.99; 3 color choices.

$39.95 WOOL FELT HAT - $9.99; 2 color choices; one size fits most.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

THURSDAY'S BARGAINOMICS BIBLE PASSAGE

Amnon, one of David’s sons, was madly in lust with his half-sister Tamar who was the full sister of David’s son Absalom. The Bible says that “Amnon became so obsessed with Tamar that he became ill” (II Samuel 13:2a, NLT).

As I said yesterday, Amnon had a choice. He could have occupied his mind with other things and repented of his impure thoughts toward his half-sister, but instead, he chose to follow the example set by his father with Bathsheba.

Amnon also “had a very crafty friend – his cousin Jonadab. He was the son of David’s brother Shimea” (II Samuel 13:3).

You can tell a lot about a person by the company he keeps. An honest person doesn’t want to hang with a dishonest person. A non-drug user doesn’t want to hang with a drug user. You can bet Amnon and “crafty” ol’ Jonadab were two peas in a pod; they clearly enjoyed each other’s company.

Now let’s pick up the story of these two ne’er-do-wells: “One day Jonadab said to Amnon, ‘What’s the trouble? Why should the son of a king look so dejected morning after morning?’ So Amnon told him, ‘I am in love with Tamar, my brother Absalom’s sister’” (II Samuel 13:3-4).

Remember all the steps David went through to get to Bathsheba? David had opportunity after opportunity to make the right choice, but he continued to make wrong ones. Amnon was intent on doing likewise. Instead of closing his mind and mouth to his wrongful thoughts, he shared them with his cousin.

“‘Well,’ Jonadab said, ‘I’ll tell you what to do. Go back to bed and pretend you are ill. When your father comes to see you, ask him to let Tamar come and prepare some food for you. Tell him you’ll feel better if she prepares it as you watch and feeds you with her own hands”
(II Samuel 13:5).

“I’ll tell you what to do.” Talk about poor judgment! Amnon took advice from a “crafty” individual. A sneak. A con. A person not to be trusted. A person very much like himself. And in so doing, Amnon took a full plunge into evil:

“So Amnon lay down and pretended to be sick. And when the king came to see him, Amnon asked him, ‘Please let my sister Tamar come and cook my favorite dish as I watch. Then I can eat it from her own hands’” (II Samuel 13:6).

Giveth thou me a break! Was David that na├»ve? With all the servants the king’s family had at their disposal, what kind of lame ploy was this? Yet David failed to smell the proverbial rat – or rats. Both Amnon and Jonadab were rotten to the core and an innocent young woman was going to suffer because of them.

Talk to almost any ex-con and he’ll tell you his first mistake was the wrong choice of friends. While we’re to love and reach out to the lost world, we aren’t to wallow in its filth. It’s one thing to reach out to a drug addict; it’s quite another to hit the crack house with him.

“Christian” is a title bought by the precious blood of Christ. Don’t use it unless you live it.

“Be careful the environment you choose, for it will shape you; be careful the friends you choose, for you will become like them.” (W. Clement Stone)

Copyright © 2013
Judy Woodward Bates

BARGAINS OF THE DAY!


personalized hand in hand family frames

Check out these buys from www.RedEnvelope.com:

$14.95 PERSONALIZED HAND-IN-HAND FAMILYY PHOTO FRAMES - $5.99; choose from man, woman, or boy - girl no longer available.

$99.95 MAN'S STAINLESS STEEL I.D. BRACELET - $39.99; personalized for $10 extra.

$129.95 BLUE TOPAZ NECKLACE/EARRING SET - $51.99; sterling silver; personalized for $10 extra.

$199.95 ROUND WIRE WRAP GEMSTONE BRACELET - $79.99; choice of blue topaz or green amethyst, both in 14K gold fill.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

WEDNESDAY'S BARGAINOMICS BIBLE PASSAGE

First a quick recap and then we’ll see what happens next in the life of David. He and Bathsheba’s child died and David responded by going “to the Tabernacle” (II Samuel 12:20b, NLT) and worshiping.

When questioned about this, “David replied, ‘I fasted and wept while the child was alive, for I said, ‘Perhaps the Lord will be gracious to me and let the child live.’ But why should I fast when he is dead? Can I bring him back again? I will go to him one day, but he cannot return to me” (II Samuel 12:22-23). David understood that death was not the end of life but the beginning of everlasting life. David knew he would see his son again.

God forgave David and Scripture shows us that He no longer referred to Bathsheba as “Uriah’s wife” (II Samuel 12:15) but David’s “wife Bathsheba” (II Samuel 12:24a, NIV). However, as we’ve already seen, God’s forgiveness doesn’t stop the earthly consequences set in motion by a person’s sin.

Nathan the prophet was sent by God to confront David. This was part of His message: “Because of what you have done, I will cause your own household to rebel against you” ( II Samuel 12:11a). Again, we need to understand this isn’t God causing evil; this is God letting David know that the sin he committed had already set evil in motion and his family was going to suffer the fallout.

So the problems just kept coming. David, having a number of wives and concubines, produced quite a few children. First Chronicles 3:1-9 lists some, not all, of David’s progeny:

“These are the sons of David who were born in Hebron: The oldest was Amnon, whose mother was Ahinoam from Jezreel. The second was Daniel, whose mother was Abigail from Carmel. The third was Absalom, whose mother was Maacah, the daughter of Talmai, king of Geshur. The fourth was Adonijah, whose mother was Haggith. The fifth was Shephatiah, whose mother was Abital. The sixth was Ithream, whose mother was Eglah, David’s wife. These six sons were born to David in Hebron, where he reigned seven and a half years. Then David reigned another thirty-three years in Jerusalem. The sons born to David in Jerusalem included Shammua, Shobab, Nathan, and Solomon. Their mother was Bathsheba, the daughter of Ammiel. David also had nine other sons: Ibhar, Elishua, Elpelet, Nogah, Nepheg, Japhia, Elishama, Eliada, and Eliphelet. These were the sons of David, not including his sons born to his concubines. Their sister was named Tamar” (NLT).

Tamar’s mother was Maacah, which made her a full sister to Absalom. Her heartbreaking story begins like this: “Now David’s son Absalom had a beautiful sister named Tamar. And Amnon, her half brother, fell desperately in love with her. Amnon became so obsessed with Tamar that he became ill. She was a virgin, and Amnon thought he could never have her” (II Samuel 13:1-2).

While marriage between relatives was a common practice, there were limitations on what was allowed. Levitical law (see Leviticus 18) forbade a half-brother from taking a half-sister as his wife or concubine, and Amnon was fully aware of this restriction.

And being fully aware that what he had in mind was forbidden, he allowed himself to become totally obsessed with Tamar. Amnon wasn’t “desperately in love” – he was desperately in lust.

Amnon had a choice. He could have occupied his mind with other things and repented of his impure thoughts toward his half-sister. But you’ve heard the expression, “Like father, like son.” David had set an example that his son Amnon intended to follow.

“We cannot turn the clock back nor can we undo the harm caused” (Paul Kagame).

Copyright © 2013
Judy Woodward Bates

BARGAINS OF THE DAY!

White Fang: The Complete Series--DVDsI haven't featured www.ChristianBook.com deals in a while, so here's a few of their best bargains:

$24.88 "WHITE FANG" - THE COMPLETE SERIES ON DVD - $4.99. 10 hours.

 $34 MONTHLY DRY ERASE WALL CALENDAR - $9.99; 18"x24

$21.99 UNIVERSAL eREADER COVER w/CROSS DESIGN - $8.99; fuchsia.