Archive for Gospel

Cleanse the House… Joshua of Ghana

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Joshua Ghana with tags , , , , , , , , , on January 11, 2022 by paulthepoke

TEXT: LEVITICUS 14:33-57

Leviticus 14:52 “And he shall cleanse the house with the blood of the bird, and with the running water, and with the living bird, and with the cedar wood, and with the hyssop, and with the scarlet.”

Hyssop is a protected plant in Israel. It is a small, hardy shrub from the basil family. It is said to have cleansing properties. The hyssop plant in the Bible symbolizes spiritual purification.

Certain rituals were performed to cleanse any house leprosy was found in the Old Testament. First, the house is shut up for seven days. After this period, the house is checked. If the house had signs of leprosy spreading, the entire house had to be pulled down. But if the disease did not spread, then the house was healed. The priest then performed a ceremony for cleansing the house which involved two live birds, cedar, hyssop, scarlet and running water from a river. One of the birds was killed over the basin of water and the cedar, hyssop and the living bird was dipped into the water and the house was sprinkled with it, after which the living bird was set free.

Leprosy represents sin because it has the capacity to spread from the heart into every part of the body. The heart represents the house where the leprosy originates; for from the heart proceeds all evil thoughts which the entire body is compelled to act upon. The product of this process can be found in people’s harsh speeches, immoral actions, violent behaviors, wickedness and the likes.

Cleansing has to begin from the heart. Nothing so far has been found effective in achieving total cleansing for the sinful heart of man. Religious ceremonies and rituals, together with human efforts have unfortunately yielded no results. The only solution to the ‘leprosy’ of sin lies in the precious blood of our sinless Christ who died on the cross to save humanity.

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY: The blood of Jesus is the all-time antidote to all forms of uncleanness.

The Bible IN ONE YEAR: JOSHUA 11 – 14  

Freedom in Christ

Posted in Freedom in Christ with tags , , , , , , on January 9, 2022 by paulthepoke

Galatians 5:1 It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery. NASB

For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery. ESV

Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage. KJV

We are opening a series to start the new year. The topic is “Freedom in Christ”.

Note the three translations from the English Standard Version (ESV), New American Standard Bible (NASB), and the King James Version (KJV). There is purpose in understanding how translators operate. Translators are looking at the original Greek text as written by the Apostle Paul in the case of the verse from Galatians. Ultimately, the Spirit of God is the author as communicated to Paul as written in the original Koine Greek. This is the common, street language of the day in the first century.

So what is Biblical “freedom” or “liberty”? What are free from? How does one live in “freedom”? Why are we free? What does a Christian do with their newly found “freedom”? What does it mean to be free?

What is “freedom” or “liberty”? This is the Greek word ἐλευθερία/eleutheria. Multiple lexicons and dictionaries state the term as freedom or liberty. Thayer’s Greek Lexicon defines the term as liberty to do or to omit things having no relation to salvation; the liberty to do as one pleases.

It was for freedom that Christ set us free…

Christ’s work on the cross set us free. He paid for the consequence of humanity’s sin. The result is our freedom. We are free from sin. We are called to live in freedom apart from sin.

Romans 6:1-2 What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it?

Humanity and culture have perverted the notion of freedom and liberty. The world says, “Do whatever you want.” The world wants to negate the consequence of these choices. We also have choices in Christ.

We are not free to sin. Yes we will still sin, hopefully less and less as we grow in Christ. But those sins are covered too. We are forgiven. He loves us as we are. And we are called to love others in our freedom. Give and provide for others.

Galatians 5:13 For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.

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At some point, this nonsense will be brought to a close. Jesus Christ will reign and there will be consequences.

Philippians 3:20-21 For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ; who will transform the body of our lowly condition into conformity with His glorious body, by the exertion of the power that He has even to subject all things to Himself.

Jubilee, Part 2, Jesus Offers a Clue?

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Isaiah, Jubilee, Prophecy with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 24, 2021 by paulthepoke

Luke 4:17-21 And the book of the prophet Isaiah was handed to Him. And He opened the book and found the place where it was written,

“The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon Me, because the LORD has anointed Me to bring good news to the afflicted; He has sent Me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to captives and freedom to prisoners; to proclaim the favorable year of the LORD.

And He closed the book, gave it back to the attendant and sat down; and the eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on Him. And He began to say to them, “Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.” -Jesus

Jesus read and spoke these words in the synagogue of His home town Nazareth (Luke 4:16). Jesus is reading Isaiah 61:1-2a. He reads verse 1 completely. Jesus then stops reading in the middle of Isaiah 61:2. By reading these words, He was claiming to be the Messiah. In other words, “Here I am!!”

The stoppage of reading in the verse has lasted close to 2,000 years. At His first coming, Jesus was a suffering servant who died for our sins. His death freed us from the bondage of sin. Christ did not come in vengeance the first time, hence the pause. And we wait for the remainder of Isaiah 61:2b-11. It describes the future conditions of the nation Israel under the leadership of the Messiah, Jesus. He returns the second time in wrath and judgment.

At this point, many have stopped their analysis. There remains another question. Who is the prophet Isaiah quoting?

…to proclaim liberty to captives and freedom to prisoners; to proclaim the favorable year of the LORD…?

Isaiah is quoting Moses who received instruction from God.

Leviticus 25:10 You shall thus consecrate the fiftieth year and proclaim a release through the land to all its inhabitants. It shall be a jubilee for you, and each of you shall return to his own property, and each of you shall return to his family.

The context of the verses quoted is a description of the jubilee year. Release the inhabitants and freedom for all the slaves.

Is Jesus leaving a clue about the timing of His second coming? Will He return in a year of Jubilee?

Here are some prophetic implications. The seven year peace covenant between the antichrist and Israel would likely be confirmed in God’s fall holiday season. A jubilee year is proclaimed on the Day of Atonement, Tishri 10 after the end of a set of seven years per Leviticus 25:9.

The Bible tells us a jubilee year is proclaimed after a Sabbatical or Shemitah year (Leviticus 25:8-11).

This would allow for the culmination of the seven year Tribulation to occur one year after a Sabbatical or Shemitah year, a possible jubilee year by definition.

A jubilee year has not been kept by Israel in over 2,000 years (www.chabad.org). As for the timing of the next jubilee year…

no one knows, only the Father.

Sabbatical Year/Shemitah, Part 3

Posted in #PaulthePoke with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 3, 2021 by paulthepoke

Deuteronomy 15:1-2 At the end of every seven years you shall grant a remission of debts. This is the manner of remission: every creditor shall release what he has loaned to his neighbor; he shall not exact it of his neighbor and his brother, because the LORD’S remission has been proclaimed.

In today’s world, the verses above are radical financial and economic concepts. All debt, regardless of size, is forgiven at the end of every seventh year. Imagine, a clean financial slate.

Think about how these verses would influence lending and borrowing practices. Larger loans would occur early in the seven year cycle. Debt structure would not look like it does today. The 30 year mortgage would be toast. Loans would likely be much smaller. Personal savings would be promoted. People would be more inclined to live within their means.

Think of all the debt and credit offering practices: home mortgages, car loans, student loans, and credit cards just to mention a few. Debt is oppressive and restrictive to freedom. Consider how each of the above would be financed or paid if debt was forgiven at the end of every seven years. Consider the change in personal spending habits.

Creditors would be more careful how they loaned their money. There would be less loaning of money. Creditors would likely make less irresponsible loans to customers who do not have the means to pay. If implemented today, debt bubbles would be a thing of the past. At the end of every seven years, everyone would be debt free. If debt payments remained at the end of the cycle, it would be forgiven. Poverty would likely be diminished significantly.

Responsibility would be increased on both the lender and the borrower. These practices would significantly cut into corporate banking profits and affect their stock prices. We likely would not see these behemoth corporate banks that dominate our economic landscape today.

Deuteronomy 23:19-20 You shall not charge interest to your countrymen: interest on money, food, or anything that may be loaned at interest. You may charge interest to a foreigner, but to your countrymen you shall not charge interest, so that the LORD your God may bless you in all that you undertake in the land which you are about to enter to possess.

Interest free lending would promote national unity and good will toward your fellow countryman. It is a matter of looking after your neighbor and brother. Financial collaboration would be an outcome. People would be more interested in the success of others.

God does not want us to take financial advantage of our fellow man. These loaning practices were built into society by God. He understands the capacity of greed demonstrated by humanity. Don’t shaft your neighbor.

These financial concepts are nowhere to be seen in today’s economic world. Most people are not aware these statutes exist. Would our lives be economically easier if this were in place today? What a concept, it is a universal blessing from God if one loans interest free to their countryman.

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The ultimate example of God’s release or remission is in His Son. Jesus forgives us of our debt, sin. 

John 1:29 The next day he saw Jesus coming to him and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! 

Our transgressions are forgiven as a matter of grace and mercy. Ephesians 1:7 In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace. 

He has paid our debt without charging us. Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. 

It is His payment that allows us to possess eternity in New Jerusalem (Revelation 21).

Pay Day Is Coming… Joshua of Ghana

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Joshua Ghana with tags , , , , , on September 15, 2021 by paulthepoke

TEXT: JEREMIAH 25:15-29

Key Verse: Jeremiah 25:29 “For, lo, I begin to bring evil on the city which is called by my name, and should ye be utterly unpunished? Ye shall not be unpunished: for I will call for a sword upon all the inhabitants of the earth, saith the LORD of hosts.”

On December 25th, 1908, a newspaper published in Messina printed a parody against God, daring Him to make Himself known by sending an earthquake. Three days later, the city and its surrounding district were devastated by a terrible quake that killed 84,000 people! Payday is coming someday for all. It is the duty of the Christian to prepare for God’s judgment.

The passage under consideration unveils the decision of God against Babylon. Babylon would be destroyed for her wickedness and cruelty, and there was nothing anyone could do about it. Jeremiah was to warn of this impending judgment. He was also assigned by God to inform people that the cup of His wrath was soon to be poured on Israel and other nations like Egypt, Edom and the Philistines.

comeandreason.com

Judgment is coming. God has appointed a day in which He will judge the world for her sins. The present world system will not escape the judgment of God. All human deeds are on record and there would be no room for falsification of facts. Every action of man will be judged. Every thought (good or bad) will be brought to light. Boys and girls, and all adults of every race and in every continent will face the consequences of their professions.

The treatment we give to the word of God will determine our eternal destiny. Therefore, believers should not relax in their evangelistic outreaches because the judgment of God remains unchanging for all unrepentant souls from generation to generation.

Persecutors of the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ will not escape the wrath of God except they repent. The train of God’s judgment is coming slowly but surely and it is important for all and sundry to be prepared.

*THOUGHT FOR THE DAY:* Judgment day is coming!

Jesus has taken judgment for those believe His death on the cross paid the price for sin. He was buried and resurrected proving He has power over death and sin.

1 Thessalonians 5:9-10 For God has not destined us for wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us so that whether we are awake or asleep we might live with Him.

The Appointed Times of the Messiah’s Return Found in Ancient Jewish Festivals… One For Israel Ministry

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Fall Feasts, Prophecy with tags , , , , on September 9, 2021 by paulthepoke

The following is from One For Israel Ministry, a Jewish and Arab ministry who believes that Jesus Christ is the Messiah.

Established in 1990, ONE FOR ISRAEL began as a Bible college and has since expanded to a multi-faceted ministry with the express goal of reaching Israelis with the Good News of Yeshua, training and equipping the Body of Messiah in Israel, and blessing our community with Yeshua’s love.

The story and ministry of ONE FOR ISRAEL is part of something much larger – the miraculous restoration of the Jewish people and the miraculous unity between Jewish and Arab believers in Jesus.

We are seeing not only the physical restoration of Israel after a 2000-year exile, but a spiritual revolution is taking place right in front of our eyes. Jewish people are returning to their God and accepting the Messiah in numbers not seen since the early church! Not only that, but many Arab people are coming to the Lord and many Arab believers are finding a deep unity with their Jewish brothers and sisters.

ONE FOR ISRAEL exists to do ministry within this miracle.

We are Jews and Arabs, together serving Messiah Jesus, sharing the Gospel with Israel and the world, making disciples, training leaders, and blessing our communities in the name of Yeshua.

Could it be that the Fall Biblical festivals celebrated by Jewish people around the world have amazing insight into the Return of our Messiah!? Most Christians are aware that it was on the appointed day of Passover that our Messiah was crucified, some are aware that it was the Biblical feast of First fruits that He was Resurrected and the appointed day of Shavuot 50 that the Holy Spirt was poured out on the church. Dr. Erez Soref dives into the Biblical Appointed days in the fall and uncovers how they celebrate the past deliverance and our Messiah’s return to come!

Go deeper into these festivals with our articles online!

https://www.oneforisrael.org/category…

If this podcast is a blessing to you, consider supporting our work and become a One for Israel partner today!

https://www.oneforisrael.org/donate/

Seek the Glory of God… Rodna Epley

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Rodna Epley with tags , , , , , , on August 24, 2021 by paulthepoke

When we seek first His Kingdom as Jesus commanded, it causes us to wear this wedding garment of Christ’s glory on us every day. As the light of the world, we don’t have to worry about how our earthly needs will be provided. They will just come to us effortlessly. God sends them without us even asking. But when we ask, He gives us abundantly more than we ask for! We seek Him and His glory (John 5:44, Proverbs 25:2) in humility, and He provides all of our needs. When we are clothed in Christ it transforms the atmosphere to instantly bring His favor and wisdom.

“Then your light shall break forth like the morning, Your healing shall spring forth speedily, And your righteousness shall go before you; the glory of the LORD shall be your rear guard. Then you shall call, and the Lord will answer; you shall cry, and He will say, ‘Here I am.’ If you take away the yoke from your midst, the pointing of the finger, and speaking wickedness, if you extend your soul to the hungry and satisfy the afflicted soul, then your light shall dawn in the darkness, and your darkness shall be as the noonday. (Isaiah 58:8-10)

Perfect peace is a primary indicator that we have the wedding garment of Christ on and dressed for the wedding! Joy unspeakable is another indicator, and perfect love that drives out all fear.

Holy Father, let your kingdom come and your will be done on earth and in our lives exactly as it is already in heaven!

We are the light of the world and we will not be hidden as Jesus said! Activate your glory within every person who reads this and show them how beautiful they are. Remind them that they are anchored behind the veil in Your glory! They are not anchored to the earth in sin and worldly passions. No one can take them out of Jesus and Your hand and nothing can separate them from Your love! Thank You Papa! In Jesus mighty name, yes and amen. 🙏❤️

Jesus died to reconcile you to the Father. Jesus finished His old covenant work on the cross, and He began His new covenant work as He sat down at the right hand of the Father, made a place for us and seated us there with Him, and then poured out the Spirit of our Father’s glory within us. So, this is the perspective of the church today as the Father releases His glory in the earth through us.

So be it Papa and let it be so!

There Shall Be Seven Weeks: Feasts (Yom Kippur/Day of Atonement)

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Angels, Fall Feasts with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 15, 2021 by paulthepoke

Daniel 9:25b …there shall be seven weeks…

The context of this series of posts is the course of the Jewish people for the initial 49 years of the 483 year period communicated from the angel Gabriel to the prophet Daniel. The city of Jerusalem has been rebuilt post exile. These events are covered in Nehemiah 8-13. Israel is returning to God’s Law. The focus is on God’s appointed holidays. This week, the Day of Atonement or Yom Kippur is the topic.

Yom Kippur or the Day of Atonement is celebrated on Tishri 10th. It is the last day of the 40 day period of Teshuvah.

This holiday is viewed at the holiest day of Judaism. The day is a Sabbath day of rest. Yom Kippur is the only day a fast is required. The day begins at sun down. On the Day of Atonement, the high priest was kept awake during the dark of the night. The high priest was dressed in a white robe. Sacrifices of a bull, ram, and a goat occur. The priest makes a sacrifice for himself and for the nation of Israel. Yom Kippur is the day the high priest came into the inner sanctuary of the temple to make sacrifices on behalf of the nation of Israel. He is the only person allowed into the inner sanctuary. This day is the only day the high priest is allowed in the inner sanctuary. He entered the highest holy place with incense and coals. The incense was burned. Next, the recovered blood was sprinkled on the mercy seat, the top of the Ark of the Covenant. This is the busiest day of the year for the high priest.

See Leviticus 16 for specific details. New Manners and Customs of Bible Times

In the 21st century, we have a high priest. 

Hebrews 6:20 …where Jesus has entered as a forerunner for us, having become a high priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.

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Today, animal sacrifices are no longer necessary, even when the Jewish Temple is rebuilt. 

Hebrews 9:11-14 But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things to come, He entered through the greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this creation; and not through the blood of goats and calves, but through His own blood, He entered the holy place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption. For if the blood of goats and bulls and the ashes of a heifer sprinkling those who have been defiled sanctify for the cleansing of the flesh, how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without blemish to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?

Hebrews 13:11-12 For the bodies of those animals whose blood is brought into the holy place by the high priest as an offering for sin, are burned outside the camp. Therefore Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people through His own blood, suffered outside the gate.

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Some believe this is the day at the end of the 7 year tribulation that Christ will physically return to Earth and establish His millennial kingdom.

Hebrews 9:28 …so Christ also, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time for salvation without reference to sin, to those who eagerly await Him.

There Shall Be Seven Weeks: Monthly Offerings

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Angels with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 13, 2021 by paulthepoke

Daniel 9:25b …there shall be seven weeks…

The context of this series of posts is the course of the Jewish people for the initial 49 years of the 483 year period communicated from the angel Gabriel to the prophet Daniel. The city of Jerusalem has been rebuilt post exile. These events are covered in Nehemiah 8-13. Israel is returning to God’s Law. The focus is Temple worship service. The Sabbath offering was covered last week. Next, Nehemiah reminds the Jewish people of the Monthly Offering or the New Moons.

New Moons is a phrase and a reminder of a new month. How is a new moon or a new month determined on the Hebrew calendar? God operates on a lunar calendar. Jews have utilized the following procedure every month for thousands of years. It is called Rosh Chodesh which means “head of the month”.

At the end of a lunar cycle, the moon is dark and is not seen for 2-3 days. So, the new moon could be identified during this 2-3 day period …of that day or hour no one knows…

By definition, a new moon is proclaimed when the first little sliver emerges from a darkened moon. It is a tiny crescent that is noted briefly at sunset on the western horizon. The month begins at the sighting of the new moon.

Two witnesses have to confirm the sighting. Upon agreement, the two witnesses report to the high priest. When the new moon is confirmed, the trumpet (shofar/ram’s horn) is blown. Why two witnesses? This concept is part of Jewish law. See Deuteronomy 19:15-21.

Two or more witnesses to the new moon are legally establishing as fact per the law.

Every new moon the following sacrifices are to take place.

Numbers 28:11-15 At the beginning of every month, you are to present to the LORD a burnt offering of two young bulls, one ram, and seven male lambs a year old, all unblemished, along with three-tenths of an ephah of fine flour mixed with oil as a grain offering with each bull, two-tenths of an ephah of fine flour mixed with oil as a grain offering with the ram, and a tenth of an ephah of fine flour mixed with oil as a grain offering with each lamb. This is a burnt offering, a pleasing aroma, an offering made by fire to the LORD.

The elements of animal sacrifice and bread remain from the daily offering to the Sabbath offering to the monthly offering. All animals are unblemished and one year old. More bread is required for larger animals and the amount of flour decreases from the bull (3/10 ephah) to the ram (2/10 ephah) to the lamb (1/10 ephah). An ephah is roughly one bushel or 8 dry gallons or 35 liters or 8 pounds.

The element of fire, symbolic for judgment remains. Grilled meat and baked bread is a pleasing aroma to the LORD.

Numbers 28:14 Their drink offerings shall be half a hin of wine with each bull, a third of a hin with the ram, and a quarter hin with each lamb. This is the monthly burnt offering to be made at each new moon throughout the year.

Wine is required with the sacrifice as well. The bigger the animal, more wine is required. The amount of wine for a bull is 1/2 hin, for the ram 1/3 hin, and for the lamb 1/4 hin. The liquid measurement of a hin is roughly 1.5 U.S. gallons or 5.7 liters.

Numbers 28:15 In addition to the regular burnt offering with its drink offering, one male goat is to be presented to the LORD as a sin offering.

Perfect, spotless animals are sacrificed and burned. Symbolically, judgment has been delivered perpetually. Daily, weekly, and monthly examples are provided as a reminder. Bread and wine are served with these sacrifices. These elements represent perfect sacrifices.

And why are the sacrifices offered? Because of the male goat, a symbol for sin.

Christ is the fulfillment! Got Jesus???

Passover: Blood on the Door Posts

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Gospel, Prophecy, Spring Feasts with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 28, 2021 by paulthepoke

Exodus 12:22 Take a bunch of hyssop and dip it in the blood that is in the basin, and touch the lintel and the two doorposts with the blood that is in the basin. None of you shall go out of the door of his house until the morning.

Hyssop is a plant used for medicinal and religious purposes. Symbolically, hyssop is like bleach for sin. The plant is required for ceremonial cleanliness when a person came in contact with dead bodies or dead animals.

The context of Exodus 12 tells us the Passover Lamb was previously sacrificed. Each household was to butcher their own lamb. Each lamb was sacrificed by the front door of the house.

Blood from the animal was collected in the basin. The Hebrew word for “basin” is caph. The word can be defined and utilized a couple of different ways in the Old Testament. The word comes from the term caphaph. Another translation could be “threshold”. The word is primarily translated as basin, threshold, or door in the Old Testament.

In either case, the term implies the sacrifice likely took place near the front door or threshold where the blood could be collected in a basin.

Blood stained hyssop was painted on the lintel or the top of the door. Then, blood was painted on the doorposts. Again, the blood comes from the basin or container.

John 10:9 I am the door; if anyone enters through Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture.

Jesus Christ is the door. His body is the basin that holds the shed blood. Jesus is the Lamb of God. He is the sacrificed paschal lamb.

Christ’s crown of thorns is the brushed blood on the lintel of the door. He is the shed blood on the doorposts with His outstretched arms on the cross. His feet were pierced with nails to the cross. A Roman soldier thrust a spear in His side to confirm His death.

Believers in Him are redeemed and purchased with that blood.

Romans 3:25 God presented Him as the atoning sacrifice through faith in His blood, in order to demonstrate His righteousness, because in His forbearance He had passed over the sins committed beforehand.

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Notice, the people are inside the house and they are instructed to stay inside until the next morning. The LORD does not see the sinful people inside the structure. The LORD sees the shed blood of the Passover Lamb.

Exodus 12:23 For the LORD will pass through to strike the Egyptians, and when he sees the blood on the lintel and on the two doorposts, the LORD will pass over the door and will not allow the destroyer to enter your houses to strike you.

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