Search CCF


    Thanks for dropping by Coffee Cup Friends, your Online Reading Room! Here, you will find stimulating writings by our top-notch team of writers. You'll find everything from short inspiring devotionals to life-changing articles. So grab your favorite beverage and enjoy the time you spend with us. Be encouraged, restored, and informed. Blessings on your day, Cinda


    Monthly Archives

Archive for the ‘Contributor: Mary’ Category

Parts 1: Knowing God
Part 2: God’s Relationship with Israel
Part 3: Israel Prophesied

Part One: Knowing God
babyandmomI think you will agree, that (for most of us) our daily lives are bombarded with too many “things”, too many responsibilities, and sometimes, our priorities get way out of order. We’re usually up early, hurried to get out of the house for work or get the kids ready for school, or a combination of both. But as Christians, God should be the most significant part of our day. Why? Like all of our relationships, the only way to really get to know someone is to spend quality time with them. And, it’s the same with God. Getting to know Him and develop an intimate relationship is everything! The key to a deeper understanding of God (and actually knowing His heart) is to delve into His Word. This is how we can truly find out Who He is.

Our God is a relational God! This is no better evidenced than at the cross where He spilled His blood so that we could have restored fellowship with Him. Everything that matters to our King centers around relationships as well as the making and keeping of covenants with those He calls into relationship with Him. Some areas of God’s heart are very obvious to us because of their relational nature (such as marriage, family, and friendship), but there are other areas of His heart that are often overlooked in a Gentile-American mindset and culture. To fully know, love, and please our God, it is important that we understand the other areas of His heart. We liken it to the same way we get to know someone we’re dating. Most of us are passionate about discovering what they like and dislike, and learn as much about them as we can. This is the same way we need to pursue God.

The one thing very close to God’s heart is His people Israel. If Israel matters to God, then this little nation should matter to us! But don’t take my word for it. Let’s consider the following questions:
1. Why does so much of the world rage, fight and plot to destroy this land of Israel and her people?
2. Why such hatred toward a people who’s greatest longing is to live in peace with her neighbors?
3. Why such a frenzy over a tiny piece of land and a people who are only a tiny fragment of the world’s population?

We’ll discover the answers to these questions as we search the Word together. Let’s get started on our journey as we step back into history and uncover God’s plan and purpose for mankind. It is here that we’ll come to understand His heart for Israel and her people. Now, let’s see what our King has to say about it!

israeliflagPart Two – God’s Relationship with Israel
The Bible is the story of God’s love from creation to redemption, to His return in Revelation. And it’s exciting! The pages of the book are full of man’s tendency to wander, to sin, and God’s faithfulness to draw man back to Him. Â In this brief history, we will focus on His relationship with the land of Israel and the Jewish people.

In Genesis 12, God called a man named Abram from Ur (of the Chaldeans) to follow Him. In Genesis 15, God cut a blood covenant with Abram. Through this covenant, God bound Himself to Abram and his descendants with promises to be their God. This covenant also came with a promise for a piece of land. God called both promises everlasting. These promises are based on God’s faithfulness, not Abraham’s or his descendants’, and this covenant (as with all His covenants) is a covenant of love.

The New Testament speaks of God’s love for His people, Israel, just as much as the Old Testament. Jesus’ coming is the fulfillment of all the promises to Israel in the Old Testament of a coming Messiah. Matthew 23:37 gives us a feel for God’s love for Israel. Here Jesus is talking about longing to gather up Israel’s children the way a mother hen gathers her chicks under her wings. This is such a picture of God’s tenderness and love over His people, Israel. If God has this much love for this people, shouldn’t we, too? And you can be sure, what is precious to God becomes a source of hatred for our enemy, the devil. Historically, we will start to see that hatred toward the Jews, and sadly, the church, was often one of the biggest offenders.

temple02Part Three: Israel Prophesied
Matthew 24:1-2 “Jesus left the temple and was walking away when his disciples came up to Him to call his attention to its buildings. ‘Do you see all these things?’ he asked. ‘I tell you the truth, not one stone here will be left on another, everyone will be thrown down.’”
Hosea 3:4-5 “For the Israelites will live many days without king or prince, without sacrifice or sacred stones, without ephod or idol, afterward the Israelites will return and seek the Lord their God and David their king. They will come trembling to the Lord and to His blessings in the last days.” Did you know that “David their king” is a Hebrew way of saying their “Messiah”?

In Matthew, Jesus says the temple will be destroyed. In 70 A.D., just as Jesus had prophesied, Rome destroyed the temple in Jerusalem and it was the beginning of the diaspara for the Jews. They began to scatter throughout the world but the Jews who were left and did not follow the Messiah, followed a Jewish man in 132 A.D. who claimed to be the Messiah. His name was Simon Bar Copa. Copa said that he would put down Rome and this is exactly what the Jews wanted as they were tired of living under the thumb of Rome. In 135 A.D., that rebellion was put down. Thousands upon thousands of Jews were crucified. They were enslaved and dispersed out of the land.

Consequently, Israel was renamed Syria Palestina and Jerusalem was renamed Ailia Capitalina. The name, Ailia Capitalnia, did not stick. (Syria Palestina was chosen as a name because the Philistines were the enemies of the Jews.) The Romans were trying to insult the Jews so they renamed it and the Palestine part of the name stuck until 1948. There are different peoples who controlled the land of Israel after 135 A.D. when Jerusalem was destroyed and the Jews expelled. The different groups who controlled Israel were Rome, the Seljaks, the Egyptians, the Muslims, & the Crusaders. From 1517-1917 the Ottoman Empire (Turkey) controlled the land until 1917 when Britain took Israel and remained in control until 1947.

NEXT: Parts 4-5 – The Early Church and Later Apostasy / Suffering and Injustice

Author: Mary, CCF Contributor
All Rights Reserved
Coffee Cup Friends

The Big Question

Posted by Cinda On June - 26 - 2013ADD COMMENTS

ponderingThe question I have been asked most often in the last few months is “Do you believe we are living in the last days.” My answer is “Yes, I do!” However, it is not what I think that matters.  God through His Holy Word has given us a road map to recognize the time before the return of the Lord. Even though we do not know the exact date of His return, we can know the season.  The Lord has admonished us in 1 Thessalonians 5 to be alert and walk soberly so that day does not take us by surprise. Through prayer and careful study of God’s word, we can recognize and respond to these present times in a Godly way, not in fear but in hope of His return.

The most significant sign of His return is the restoration of Jerusalem to the Jews in June 1967. Luke 21:24.  Zechariah 12 and Zechariah 14 speak of a time when all the nations will gather against Jerusalem. In chapter 14, the Lord, Himself, will go out to fight against Israel’s enemies. Zechariah 14:9 tells us that after this battle the Lord will be King over the whole earth. We have a blessed hope but until that day we are to occupy until He comes. We can only fulfill this command by drawing near to the Lord Jesus and listening for His part for us in this last battle for His purposes to be fulfilled on earth.

jewishpeopleThe world has gone mad with hatred for the Jews. This is, however, so much bigger than hatred for the Jews. It is hatred for the God of the Jews. You see, if we truly love God, we will love what He loves. He loves and has chosen this people for His very own. Deuteronomy 7:6; Psalm 105:6-11; Isaiah 43:21; Romans 11:1 and Romans 11:11. He has future plans for His land and His covenant people. Plans that the enemy of God and man (the devil) seek to hinder. We are called as believers to become active in blessing His people through prayer Psalm 122:6. We are called to be a financial blessing to the Jews. Romans 15:25-27.

Jesus tells us that He will not return until this Gospel of the Kingdom is preached to the whole world Matthew 24:14 and until Jerusalem says, “Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord”.

First, let’s ask ourselves if we have a heart to see the lost come to Him and if we have a heart for His people to cry out to Him. “Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord”. If not just ask Him to break your heart with the things that break His heart. Pursue Him with passion and He will direct and guide you through these last and troubling times.

God bless and keep you dear brothers and sisters in Christ.

Author: Mary, CCF Contributor
All Rights Reserved
Coffee Cup Friends

Praying for Israel is Critical

Posted by Cinda On June - 17 - 2013ADD COMMENTS

israeliflagThe urgency to pray for Israel is great and the time to press in with God for His beloved people and land is now!

Zechariah 12 warns of a time when God will make Jerusalem a cup of trembling to all the nations. Zechariah 14 tells us that God will gather the nations to fight against Jerusalem. So what are we to do if God is taking this action?  We are to stand with, pray for, and bless in every way possible His people Israel. We are admonished in Isaiah 62:7 to give God no rest until He makes Jerusalem the praise of the earth. Scripture is very clear what our position is to be. This is not a time for little arrow prayers. This is a time for fasting and intercession to battle in the heavenly places for God’s purposes to be fulfilled here on earth.

Recently the US government has been outraged because Israel chose to build in Jerusalem. Our government needs to be reminded that Israel is a sovereign nation and has every right to build in its capital. Letters to the state department, our senators and congressmen are important at this time.  Please let them know that you wish the US to stand with Israel who has always been a friend and strong ally to America. America is on a course of destruction if she does not stop pressuring Israel to divide its land. Joel 3 warns us of judgment against those nations that cause God’s people to divide HIS land.

Gathering small groups together with the purpose of praying for Israel, individual prayer, and forming prayer groups at your church are wonderful ways to encourage others to join you in praying for God’s purposes in His land and for His people. We need to become proactive in blessing Israel.  I suggest we all pray Isaiah 40 and ask The Lord to show us how to comfort His people. He will lead and we will obey. Dear sisters, our God will hear. PLEASE, PLEASE pray and NOW!

Suggestions for praying for Israel:

1. Pray for the salvation of the Jews. Romans 10:1

2. Cry out to God for that day when His people will say “Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord.” Matthew 23:37-39

3. Pray for unity among the believers in Israel.

4. Pray for Netanyahu (Prime Minister of Israel) that he would have Godly wisdom and the strength and courage to stand up to the pressures of the US, EU, UN, and Russia. Also, pray he will know how to respond to Iran.

5. Pray that the time for God to have favor on Zion would be now. Psalm 102:13-22

6. Pray that God would make us watchmen on the walls for Jerusalem.

7. Pray that God would raise up voices within the church who would speak of His love and faithfulness to His covenant people Israel.

8. Pray for those believers who are working in the name of Jesus in the land.

9. Pray daily and always for the peace of Jerusalem and the soon return of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Author: Mary, CCF Contributor
All Rights Reserved
Coffee Cup Friends

The Remnant

Posted by Cinda On February - 26 - 2013ADD COMMENTS

“Lord, show me how to live in the world and times you have placed me.
Show me how to be a light in the darkness and a witness to who You are.”
This is my prayer and may it also be yours.

military2We see deception, wars and rumors of war, nation against nation and earthquakes in various places. Israel has been restored as a nation. Jerusalem is back in the hands of the Jews and the battle for the holy city is building. We are a people who love ourselves, money and pleasure. We are ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, brutal, slanderous, treacherous, rash and conceited. 2 Timothy 3:1-5 We no longer want to hear sound doctrine. Instead we have gathered around teachers who teach what our itching ears want to hear. 2 Timothy 4:3-4. We see great apostasy. 2 Thessalonians 2:3 We have lost our first love and can’t even see how lukewarm we have become.

That is a great deal of bad news but there is GOOD NEWS also. God has a remnant. He has a people who love Him and with all their being want to serve and honor Him. I want to be part of that remnant, and scripture is full of wisdom to show us how to do that. For today, let’s look at just one of the keys. It is found in Psalm 91:1. “He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.” Notice it doesn’t say he who visits or stops in on occasion but he who DWELLS. It is the one who abides in the Holy One who will find rest. John 15 also talks about abiding. In John 15:10 we are told if we obey His commands, we will abide in His love and our joy will be complete. In John 15:5 we are promised we will produce fruit* if we abide in Him. Now we see abiding in Him brings rest, joy, and fruit. These promises are not based on how frightening the world is or how dire our circumstances but on the Word of God.

This is only the first step in the answer to my prayer. But I do feel it is one of the most important keys to being an overcomer and preparing ourselves to meet the King. God bless!!

Author: Mary, CCF Contributor
Coffee Cup Friends
All Rights Reserved