Month: April 2022

The Politics of Rome

The Jews of Jesus day were not an easy people to rule. They had been conquered and dominated for centuries and now they were under Rome’s power. “Pax Romana” as it was known, wasn’t really peace, it was peace through coercion and violence. That was the politics of Rome.

Each year for Passover, 200,000 pilgrims would travel to Jerusalem from all over the region for their celebration. This made for a tense time in the city as the officials feared riots and the Jews feeling empowered by their celebrations, thereby risking a revolt. So, Pontus Pilate was sent to the city at that time to keep it peaceful and maintain control. The Jews could hold their festival but military force would assure there would be no insurrection. The politics of Rome would reign supreme.

It was into this political climate that Jesus of Nazareth chose to go public.

Although he had traveled all over the region healing, performing miracles, and deeply affecting lives; and although his fame had spread oft-times ahead of him, he insisted on slipping away from crowds and warning many healed to go and tell no one. He refused the accolades, and attempts to promote him.

Palm Sunday, AD 29 was different.

On this day, Jesus chose to unravel the politics of Rome by going public with His right to claims as the Messiah. On this day, he made his Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem, as King of the Jews. On this day, he once again displayed cornerstones of His Kingdom, The Kingdom of Heaven.

He entered the city: (Matthew 21; Mark 11; Luke 19; John 12)

  • riding a donkey and it’s colt
  • people put their coats on the animal and the ground ahead of him
  • people cut tree branches and spread them on the road
  • crowds shouted in front of and behind him
  • they shouted “Hosanna to the Son of David”
  • they shouted “Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord”
  • the whole city was stirred
  • the crowds praised Him for all of His mighty works
  • religious leaders told them to be quiet
  • Jesus told them if they kept quiet, the stones would cry out
  • He wept over the city
  • saying, “I wish that you had known today the things that make for peace”
  • but you do not know the time of your visitation
  • He entered the Temple and drove out the moneychangers
  • He reinstituted His House as a house of prayer
  • crowds followed Him because they heard of Lazarus being raised from the dead

When Jesus entered the city that day, He was publically displaying the Kingdom of Heaven in its peace, humility, and victory. He was publically receiving and encouraging praise. He was publically allowing a parade of praise, peace and His power to be linked with Him and His Kingdom. He was publically contrasting the politics of Rome with the Kingdom of Heaven.

And the city “was stirred”. The residents took notice that something different was happening. The pilgrims took notice. Pilate the governor took notice. Herod the King too, they all took notice of Jesus’ parade through the streets and His influence over the people.

Jesus was political that day. He was political because He was influencing people on a civic and individual level. He was influencing people with The Kingdom of Heaven. He was showing all of them that heaven is a way of life, it is here and now. Not just a place we go to when we die. He was going public with the Kingdom of Heaven.

With everything in me I can tell you that this is an urgent season, this is a Palm Sunday Season, and it is time for God’s people to go public with the Kingdom of Heaven. Not just for a day or a week either.

These are the days for Christians to go public, when the Kingdom of God is put on display. When Jesus’ miracles and fame fills our cities and neighborhoods. In the face of coercion and violence, of cancel culture and persecution, and in the throws of the politics of our own Rome, we declare HOSANNA – save us! Blessed is the King who is coming.

In our own hostile politics, we can no longer shrink back in fear and allow the Pilate’s and Herod’s to rule over and intimidate us. We cannot allow government to coerce us with peace that comes by violence, for that is the politics of Rome.

We are citizens of the Kingdom of Heaven!

In humility, true peace and total victory (by the Blood of the Lamb), we will demonstrate heaven on earth by living in alignment with The Word, and setting it as our standard in all things. We will speak up, show up, and stand up. We will declare the Truth of The Word in the hearing of those that spout lies. We will parade His greatness, show off His power, and not be silenced. (Although, I’d love to see and hear rocks cry out.)

We will pray, sing, have faith, see healings, miracles and the Kingdom of Heaven advance. We will be the passionate who advance His Kingdom passionately.

It is time to go public, my friend! The stakes are high and rising. The religious and the real are being sifted. The Kingdom of Heaven is at hand.

You must choose with which kingdom you will identify – the Kingdom of Heaven or the Politics of Rome.

Happy Palm Sunday,


He Knows Your Name

He sure does; please don’t doubt it, settle it.

Follow me here for just a moment –

” He determines the number of stars; he gives to all of them their names.”

Psalms 147:4 ESV

There are approximately 200 trillion galaxies in the observable universe. And there are thought to be an average of 100 million stars in each galaxy. That my friend, is 2 x 10 to the 22 power, or 200 quintrillion stars in the observable universe. (1)

these are stars
these are are galaxies

And every one of them is not only numbered by the Creator, but named by the Creator as well. He knows their name, each and every one.

named stars

My brain cannot even phanthom a number that large, much less the names to correspond with each star. Geesh, I can’t even remember a grocery list of 5 or 6 items.

But here’s where you come into this amazing picture.

” This is what the Lord says, He who created YOU, He who formed YOU; I have called YOU by name.”

Isaiah 43:1 ESV

” The Lord called me from the womb, from the body of my mother, he named my name.”

Isaiah 49:1
in Mom’s womb

There are many other places too, where we are reminded that the Creator knows our name. Just as He knows and names the stars, even better He knows you, He knows your name.

He knows the names of the 108 billion people who have ever been born on this planet since it was created, all of them. And my friend, YOU are one of them. He knows your name.

There are times when we lose sight of our own signifigance. We forget our value. We think no one notices us or really cares about what is important to us. We think that our feelings, interests, desires, energies and deeds are overlooked or disregarded. At times we may even wonder if we are truly known.

Whether not not those thougts have swirled through your subconscious (or conscious) mind, the fact remains- HE KNOWS YOUR NAME. He knows your identity. He knows the very structure of your DNA with all of it’s nucleotide units. Including the exact number of hairs on your head. (Which by the way is somewhere between 80,000-120,000.)

Someone on the other side of this screen, needs to be reminded that YOU MATTER. Your name and your identity are noticed, valued, and intentional. He loves you, created you in your mother’s womb and knows your name.

So glad that He knows my name,

Debra L. Chaney

1., Elizabeth Howell, Ailsa Hawkey; 2.11.22

Audacious Achsah

AKA The woman who dared to ask for more

The only daughter of Caleb and his wife, Achsah, was a jewel in her family, set among her three brothers. Her dad was a well respected prince in Israel, with a long history of heroic accomplishments, and through her childhood she and her brothers had beard of his many spy stories. It was he and Joshua, who chose to report on the promises of Yahweh being fulfilled when he and the other 11 spies were sent in to spy out the new land, rather than the giant obstacles that were there. For his faithful service to Yahweh, he was honored and respected both inside and out of his family. Caleb was audacious.

Caleb and his wife, marked their daughter with a name to represent their regard for her. She was their jewel, their anklet. Her walk would bring a lovely jingle, and a resounding note to everyone that she was approaching. People would hear her coming before she actually arrived. THAT was her heritage. THAT was the DNA that her famous Dad and Mom passed on to her. She would make audacious sounds and requests, like her Dad.

There was a time when Caleb was leading the men of Judah in battle for the city of Debir. He made this promise,

” He who attacks Debir and captures it, I will give him Ascsah my daughter for a wife.”

Judges 1:11-12 ESV

Now by all of our modern standards, this father’s promise is the height of misogyny. It’s hard for us in the the Western culture to comprehend. But in that day, and that culture, although women’s rights were limited, the assumption that a girl would be given in marriage was accepted and most of the time arranged. So, the fact that she would wed another prince and courageous Yahweh lover was a plus for Achsah. She understood, but she didn’t settle.

The warrior who captured Debir and was given Achsah as his wife was Othniel, Caleb’s nephew.

When the time came for them to wed, we see the audicious DNA of Achsah come jingling and shining forth, they all would now see who Achsah really was. She would resound as her voice was heard. This jewel would now be heard and seen.

” When she (Achsah) came to him (Othniel, her husband), she urged him to ask her father for a field. And she dismounted from her donkey, and Caleb said to her, “What do you want?” She said to him, “Give me a blessing! Since you have set me in the land of the Negeb, give me also springs of water.” And Caleb gave her the upper springs and the lower springs.”

Judges 1:14-15 ESV

She was content to be the reward that Othniel was given, but she was not content with what she had been given.

After she URGED her husband to ask for land, she “got off her ass” (KJV) and respectfully TOLD her Dad to give her a blessing also. She was not about to settle for a dry piece of land at the edge of Judah’s border, with no source of fresh water. Without water, their land would be almost useless. She dared to ask for more.

The Septuagint adds this-

” …and Chaleb gave her according to her heart the ransom of the upper springs and the ransom for the low springs.”

Judges 1:15 The Septuagint (Greek translation of the Hebrew Torah)

This audacious, Achsah, this jewel of Caleb’s family, knew exactly what the desires of her heart were. In order to raise a family, they would need more than land, they needed water. With land and water their land would be fruitful and provide for their family. Othniel, a man of the Torah, and not a farmer, would have enough to supprot their growing family. She respected him, but she would not settle and audaciously asked for more.

Guess what? You read it, she got what she asked for. Not just one spring, but two. The upper and the lower springs! Her family would now prosper. Now she was content and could leave her Dad and cleave unto her husband. They would be one now.

This was a marriage arranged by God. Othniel was joined to an audacious woman, who spoke her heart, and did not settle, but wanted more and dared not only to believe for it, but ask for it. He learned to lean on her and her on him.

This Othniel, became the first judge mentioned in the book of Judges to oversee the land of Israel. And of this Othniel it is said, “the Spirit of the Lord was upon him and he judged Israel.” Judges 3:10 ESV

Can two walk together except they be agreed? Amos 3:3 Othniel and Achsah were a pair to be reckoned with. The Spirit of the Lord was on them in one of Israel’s darkest seasons. And for forty years the land had rest, under their leadership. Judges 3:11

My friend, if you are married, there is more for you and your spouse. Will you dare to believe for it and ASK for it? What is in your heart? Be audacious. Urge God. Lift your voice, make some noise, jingle like Achsah’s anklet.

Are you single? Will you dare to ask for more? Do you even want more? Are you content? Have you settled? Are you satisfied? There is more for you, what is in your heart? ASK FOR IT. Tell your Father you want more!

Our Father has upper springs (heavenly resources and appointments) and lower springs (earthly, temporal necessities) to give us. They are there for the asking. Dare to ask for more!

“Ask and it will be given to you, seek and you will find, knock and it will be opened to you.”

Luke 11:9 ESV

I dare say, it’s time to “get off our ass” and ask for more!

Be bold, be courageous, be impudent, and be audacious like Achsah.

Go with God,