You are welcome to use the writings on these pages or pass them on to others who might find a touch from God in the words. Our purpose is always to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ with the world. Please remember to give credit to the Author who has given you everything, and keep in remembrance the vessel which He used to bring these words to you. We pray that this site may be a blessing to you and anyone with whom its been shared. All rights reserved. Peggy Hoppes
Christian Bible Study Pages
Travel PagesSalisbury Plain
Our Lord is so good, He grants us many blessings. We can see Him in the daily course of events, in our homes, our jobs, our lives. I pray that these words help you to grow in your faith and recognize His hand in even the most mundane circumstances.
The picture to the right is of a Celtic Chapel located in Cornwall England. This building is approximately 1700 years old, and contains a holy well known for its healing powers.
(Click for enlarged)
“Rejoice in Yahweh, you righteous! Praise is fitting for the upright. Give thanks to Yahweh with the lyre. Sing praises to him with the harp of ten strings. Sing to him a new song. Play skillfully with a shout of joy! For Yahweh’s word is right. All his work is done in faithfulness. He loves righteousness and justice. The earth is full of the loving kindness of Yahweh. By Yahweh’s word, the heavens were made: all their army by the breath of his mouth. He gathers the waters of the sea together as a heap. He lays up the deeps in storehouses. Let all the earth fear Yahweh. Let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of him. For he spoke, and it was done. He commanded, and it stood firm. Yahweh brings the counsel of the nations to nothing. He makes the thoughts of the peoples to be of no effect. The counsel of Yahweh stands fast forever, the thoughts of his heart to all generations. Blessed is the nation whose God is Yahweh, the people whom he has chosen for his own inheritance. Yahweh looks from heaven. He sees all the sons of men. From the place of his habitation he looks out on all the inhabitants of the earth, he who fashions all of their hearts; and he considers all of their works. There is no king saved by the multitude of an army. A mighty man is not delivered by great strength. A horse is a vain thing for safety, neither does he deliver any by his great power. Behold, Yahweh’s eye is on those who fear him, on those who hope in his loving kindness, to deliver their soul from death, to keep them alive in famine. Our soul has waited for Yahweh. He is our help and our shield. For our heart rejoices in him, because we have trusted in his holy name. Let your loving kindness be on us, Yahweh, since we have hoped in you..” Psalm 33, WEB
I have had the pleasure of driving across the continental United States of America several times. I have driven every mile of I-80 from coast to coast, and a good portion of many of the other interstate highways. I’ve seen the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans and the Gulf of Mexico. I’ve seen the Mississippi River and crystal clear creeks in the country. I’ve stood on the shore of at least one of the great lakes and fished in my grandmother’s backyard pond. I have stood on the mountaintop in the Rockies, and marveled over the landscape at Mount St. Helen’s. I’ve seen the Redwood forests, magnificent waterfalls, and rainbows that seemed to stretch all the way across California.
I have driven across Kansas at night, where a single front porch light can be seen from twenty miles away. I have driven across Montana, where every exit had a sign for a historic site to visit. It seemed to take forever to get across Montana, which is really amazing because at the time there was no daytime speed limit and I have to admit that I took my car to its limit. I’ve driven, or been stuck in, New York City and Los Angeles traffic jams. I’ve enjoyed the beauty tiny country roads across this nation, and sat in the cafes of small town America.
There is still much more I would like to see. We all have a bucket list and I’m blessed to have been able to visit places and see many things. I’ve seen fields full of bluebonnets and a blooming century plant in the middle of a desert. I’ve driven at least a few miles of Route 66, and even visited the Cadillac Ranch. I’ve been to more kitschy American oddball attractions along the road than I can remember. I’ve seen places of historic and cultural significance. I would love to revisit many of those places, perhaps to get a perfect photo I missed the first time or to better understand the reason and meaning of those places.
I have vague memories of a trip to Pike’s Peak, mostly from photographs. We went to visit relatives who lived in Colorado several times when I was a child. Having been on some of the other peaks in the Rocky Mountain range, I can certainly understand how awe inspiring it can be. Katherine Lee Bates was in Colorado Springs to teach a brief summer course. She was deeply inspired by many things during her trip, including the beauty at the top of Pike’s Peak. It was at the top of the mountain that a poem came to her, bringing together her memories of the alabaster buildings at the World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago and the wheat fields of Kansas.
The poem, of course, eventually became a favorite patriotic hymn of many Americans. “America the Beautiful” was set to music by Samuel A. Ward. The poem and tune came together and was first published in 1910, although it was first used in 1904. Sadly, Samuel Ward died in 1903, so he never knew that his inspired tune became such a beloved part of American culture and patriotism. The Kennedy administration even tried to give “America the Beautiful” legal status as a national hymn or even as the national anthem.
America is certainly beautiful. Of course, in many ways it is also horrific, ugly, sad and disgusting. Aren’t we all? America is made up of so many beautiful places, but it is also made up of human beings, all of which are too human. We are sinners in need of a Savior. Katherine Lee Bates understood this reality, and within her song she appealed to God for His healing grace upon our nation. Despite our failures, we also have a heart for good. We respond immediately to disasters with our bodies and resources. We fight for justice. We stand for truth. We pray for our neighbors. We, or at least a large number of us, believe that we are blessed by God to be a blessing not only to one another but to the world. There might be some bad, but there is a lot of good, and for that reason I continue to believe that America really is beautiful.
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“My son, if you will receive my words, and store up my commandments within you, so as to turn your ear to wisdom, and apply your heart to understanding; yes, if you call out for discernment, and lift up your voice for understanding; if you seek her as silver, and search for her as for hidden treasures: then you will understand the fear of Yahweh, and find the knowledge of God. For Yahweh gives wisdom. Out of his mouth comes knowledge and understanding. He lays up sound wisdom for the upright. He is a shield to those who walk in integrity, that he may guard the paths of justice, and preserve the way of his saints. Then you will understand righteousness and justice, equity and every good path.” Proverbs 2:1-9, WEB
Modern researchers have discovered that twins can be used highly effectively in medical and biological studies. Since identical twins are exactly the same, medicine and procedures can be tested to see if they truly make a difference. One twin acts as a constant while the other receives the treatment. Since there are few variables between the subjects, the researchers can be more certain of the outcome of their research.
There was once a doctor who was fascinated by the study of twins. In university he even wrote a paper about the subject. He was a well-bred man, often described as refined and intelligent. He became a doctor and was active in several civic organizations. He was popular and successful. Unfortunately, he was also a rabid racist, a German war criminal who participated in Auschwitz. As a matter of fact, Dr. Josef Mengele was known as “the angel of death.” He sent four hundred thousand Jews and Gypsies to their death in the gas chambers and he conducted horrific experiments on the prisoners. He welcomed every delivery of prisoners even when he was not on duty to ensure that all sets of twins were given for his research. He ensured that his ‘patients’ were treated better than others - they had a special dorm and enough rations to keep them healthy - but he never considered them human and did whatever he wanted to their bodies.
Josef Mengele’s idea to use twins for research was a good idea used in a most horrible way. The gifts and wisdom of God were abused for all the wrong reasons and many suffered under Mengele’s hand. In those days it seemed as though he was greatly blessed. Ultimately, though, his life proved to be worthless. After the war he escaped to South America where he lived until 1979 when he died of a stroke. The papers from his research have never been found and what little we know about the findings from his studies is absolutely useless medically and scientifically. He is remembered only for the horror he brought to the world, for the waste, and for his evil attitudes.
Dr. Josef Mengele sought wisdom, knowledge, and understanding, but he did not look to God. He took an evil path for the sake of his desire for power, and he built up treasures that were worthless. He destroyed lives because he did not fear the Lord’s justice and in the end he paid the price for his wrong path.
As we look around the world, we wonder how so much evil can be so well received. How can the wicked be so blessed, popular and gifted? For a season it may seem that way, but if we do not seek the Lord’s wisdom, we never really find knowledge or understanding. Instead, we end up dead and our lives are meaningless. God calls us to listen, to hear His words and to obey His commands. When we seek Him and His wisdom, we walk a path of righteousness and justice and our ultimate end is eternal life with Jesus Christ.
The following links provide some specially chosen scripture that tell the stories of the Birth and Passion of our Lord as Saviour Jesus Christ, as well as a fictional perspective of the Crucifixion. Spend time in God's Word, read about His life and learn of the wonderful gifts He has for you. Know Jesus Christ and honour Him today. Thanks be to God.
When researching, I use several versions of the bible, including the New International Version and English Standard Version. Due to copyright restrictions, I have not included quotes for the scriptures on some of the archives, but highly encourage you to open your own bibles to read the scripture passages for yourselves. Where scripture is quoted, it is usually the American Standard Version or World English Bible which belong to the public domain. Any other versions used in quotes are identified.
The devotion posted on Wednesday is based on the Lectionary texts used by millions of Christians each Sunday. The Lectionary consists of four texts: an Old Testament passage, a Psalm, a passage from one of the Epistles and a Gospel text and follows the church calendar. Archives for these writings are found at Midweek Oasis.
You are welcome to use these words to share the Gospel of our Lord Jesus. Please remember to give credit to the Author who has given you these gifts, and keep in remembrance the vessel which He used to bring them to you. We pray that this site may be a blessing to you and anyone with whom you've shared it. Peggy Hoppes