January - Reading 15

Discussion in 'Bible Reading Plan 2016' started by Brother Adam, Jan 15, 2002.

  1. Brother Adam

    Brother Adam
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  2. Clint Kritzer

    Clint Kritzer
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    Jennifer has been sick since the weekend (nothing major, primary symptom is a fever, going to doctor this afternoon) and this has enabled me to do my scripture readings early today.

    How truly human a story we have today in Genesis. The rape of Dinah and the resulting responses of the other characters in the story are actions with which any modern believer (or non-believer as far as that goes) can relate. God does not intervene in any action of chapter 34. That is an important point to remember. Jacob and Hamor meet in verse 6, I suppose to come to a settlement of justice on Jacob's part, but for a betrothal request on Hamor's. The proposal to intermarry would have absorbed Israel into the Canaanites. The Jews were in constant struggle to maintain purity in their bloodline as evidenced by Isaac and Rebekah's dismay at Esau's first marriages.
    In verse 13, we see Jacob's deceit has been inherited by his son's. The pain inherent in an adult man circumcising himself is but a single facet of their revenge. So desperate were the Hivite's to obtain Dinah as a lineage tie, that all of the men of the city agree to consent to the painful act of foreskin removal. However, Dinah's brothers, Simeon and Levi, had no intention of allowing the Canaanites any chance of jumping on the bandwagon. In a vigilante style administering of justice, they kill the town leader, Hamor and the rapist, Shechem. The other brothers, when they find the corpses on the site of the rape, drive forward on this path of revenge and sack the town! I think that all of us with wives and sister's understand the emotions that those boys must have been feeling, but remember, these actions were not of God, but rather of vengeful men. Jacob recognizes the foolhardiness of their actions and confronts them to which they reply (paraphrased), "Hey! We were in the right! You don't mess with Israel!!!"
    In chapter 35, God intervenes again and instructs Jacob to resume his nomadic path, this time to Bethel. Jacob has made a complete commitment to God just as Isaac had before him and Abraham had before Isaac. So complete was this transformation that God confirms the name change from verse 28 of chapter32.
    Sadly, we lose Rachel to complications from childbirth as Israel is leaving Bethel. In Genesis 30:1, Rachel had stated that NOT having children would cause her to die. Ironically, it was actually the act of birthing Benjamin that was her demise. Israel finally made it back to Isaac in time to witness the old man's death, and the two reconciled brothers bury their father. I bet Isaac was pleased to see that the two sons, who were known for fighting in the womb, had finally come to terms. There were three deaths in this chapter: Deborah, Rachel, and Isaac, but in contrast, Jacob's lineage is stated in verses 23 - 26. Time marches on.

    In Acts, we see the conversion of Saul. This account is a tribute to the faith of the early believers, in particular, Ananias. Can you imagine how one of us would react if BinLaden or Hussein were saved and one of us was instructed to care for them? Some of the more charitable or nurturing of us may respond accordingly, but I suspect that many of us would say, "Not me, no way, no how!!!" Saul must have also been a bit apprehensive about this. Not only had he made his bed with these Christians, he was now blind and completely helpless. He faced not only skepticism, but also physical retribution! Sort of like what happened to Shechem in Genesis today! Only this time, God was directly involved. Saul was saved, became Paul (the name change also being a tie to the Genesis reading), and became the most prolific writer of church doctrine in the Scriptures! How well this ties into our reading yesterday of Matthew to love our enemies.

    May God bless you

    - Clint
     
  3. Aaron

    Aaron
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    Here's where the rubber meets the road in the Sermon on the Mount: Christ's teaching about money.

    I think it's clear. You cannot serve God and money. Period. And yet, how often do churches and individuals go into debt thinking all the while they are serving God? Proverbs 22:7 "The rich ruleth over the poor, and the borrower is servant to the lender."
     
  4. AF Guy N Paradise

    AF Guy N Paradise
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    Question in Genesis:

    I thought Isaac was on his death bed years earlier when Jacob tricked him pretending to be Esau. How did he manage to live for many years later when both Esau and Israel re-united on good terms and returned to see him die? What am I missing here? Thanks again for the reading and the comments.
     
  5. Clint Kritzer

    Clint Kritzer
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    I think that saying he was on his "death bed" is overstated. Chapter 27 begins by saying he was old and his eyes were dim but I see no mention of any vital health problems. Though afflicted with blindness for (we can assume) a great many years, the Patriarch lived to be 108. Blessings did not have to be bestowed at the end of one's life.

    Here is the Webster 1828 definition:

     
  6. Clint Kritzer

    Clint Kritzer
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