Wednesday June 1, 2022.
This is what you are to say to Joseph: I ask you to forgive your brothers the sins and the wrongs they committed in treating you so badly.’ Now please forgive the sins of the servants of the God of your father.” When their message came to him, Joseph wept: The brothers continue to connive, lie to save themselves from what they believe will be Joseph’s revenge Gen 50:15. They presume that Joseph is like them, who would want retribution for harm done to an innocent person. But Joseph is led by the Spirit and has truly forgiven them and weeps when he gets their message. Even now, he is being persecuted, misunderstood, for what the brothers perceive to be his grudge-bearing motives. He is still grieving his father, whom he loved Gen 50:1 and now for all the kindness he has extended to his underserving brothers is shown a lack of compassion. Does Joseph strike back in anger? No, he quiets their fears Gen 50:19 and re-assures them that this was all a part of God’s perfect plan, who can use evil for good.
Application: have you’ve been hurt by a loved one, misunderstood, grieving and feeling no one cares about you. Well the Bible says to cast your cares upon Him because He cares for you 1 Pe 5:7. Jesus knows how you feel, He has been betrayed, abandoned by those closest to Him, even His Father Mt 27:46, so He understands what you are experiencing Heb 4:15. The solution is to fix your eyes on Jesus Heb 12:2,3. Give Him your pain and tell Him your sorrows, for He is the Wonderful Counsellor, who listens and comforts!
Tuesday May 31, 2022.
The scepter will not depart from Judah, nor the ruler’s staff from between his feet, until he to whom it belongs shall come and the obedience of the nations shall be his: Jacob prophesied about the tribe of Judah, which ultimately referred to Jesus. Jacob began by stating that Judah’s brothers would praise him Gen 49:8. Judah meant praise Gen 29:35. Not only would Judah’s brothers praise Judah, but all people would acknowledge Jesus Php 2:11 and all creation would praise Him Lk 19:40. Judah would be the new leader since Reuben forfeited the firstborn right through his infidelity Gen 49:4, and Simeon and Levi were passed by because of their violence upon the people of Shechem Gen 34:30. After Joshua’s death, God chose Judah to lead the battle in possessing the Promised Land Jdg 1:1,2. Therefore the rest of the tribes submitted to Judah and eventually the line of kings came through him beginning with David and ending with Jesus. The ruler’s staff from between his feet referenced the fact that Judah’s descendants would maintain control over the nation—administrating the law.
The KJV translated the phrase “until he to whom it belongs shall come” as “until Shiloh comes.” Both are referring to Jesus, the Prince of Peace Isa 9:6, the Promised Seed who would come Gal 3:19. The obedience of the nations will take place in the Millennium rule of Jesus, when He will rule with an iron hand Rev 12:5.
Application: we can have confidence in the Bible because of fulfilled prophesy, which has 100% accuracy. Jacob prophesied that Shiloh would come. Jesus did and He will return to rule forever.
WHO IS THIS ANGEL?
Monday, May 30, 2022.
The Angel who has delivered me from all harm—may he bless these boys. May they be called by my name and the names of my fathers Abraham and Isaac, and may they increase greatly on the earth.” Who is this angel? The NIV capitalized the name Angel, meaning they believe it is God. Did God deliver Jacob from all harm? Yes, He protected Jacob from Esau’s wrath Gen 33:4, He also prevented the Canaanites and the Perizzites extracting revenge for the destruction of the people of Shechem Gen 34:30, Gen 35:5, by having Jacob move back to Bethel Gen 35:1.
Jacob did have an encounter with a man Gen 32:24. Later, in the story it is revealed that this man was God Gen 32:28. We know no man has ever seen God the Father except God the Son, Jesus Jn 1:18.
In the Old Testament, there were many encounters like Jacob’s, with an angel called the Angel of the Lord. This was the pre-incarnate Christ. The word angel means messenger. The first meeting with the Angel of the Lord was by Hagar, who was given the promise by this Angel of many descendants Gen 16:10. He then went on to tell Hagar, the baby she was carrying would be a boy and what he would be called and what his character would be like Gen 16:11,12. Hagar’s response to all of this was, ”You are the God who sees me” Gen 16:13. An angel would have corrected Hagar and told her, he was not “the Angel of the Lord,” but “an angel of the Lord,” and therefore, she should not call him God.
Jesus also appeared to Abraham as the Angel of the Lord Gen 22:12,15; Moses saw the Angel of the Lord in the burning bush Ex 3:2 and then Moses was told that this Angel was God Ex 3:4,6. There are many more appearances of the Angel of the Lord to people in the Old Testament including Joshua Jos 5:15, where Jesus called Himself, the Commander of the Lord’s Army; with Gideon Jdg 6:12; and Manoah’s wife Jdg 13:3, to name a few.
Application: Jesus came to reveal the Father. He told Philip, if you’ve seen Me, you’ve seen the Father Jn 14:9 for Jesus is the exact representation of the Father’s being Heb 1:1-3. He has the fullness of deity living in bodily form Col 2:9. Yet, we are told not to make any images in the form of anything to worship Ex 20:4. God is spirit and we must worship Him in the Spirit and in truth Jn 4:24. So, rather than desiring to see God visually, we need to see Him through His Word, for Jesus is the Living Word Jn 1:14; the Living Bread Jn 6:51, who told us that we can’t sustain live on only physical bread but need Him, our spiritual bread daily Mt 4:4!
CHOOSE YOUR RESTING PLACE
Sunday May 29, 2022.
But when I rest with my fathers, carry me out of Egypt and bury me where they are buried: Jacob on his death bed made Joseph swear to bury his body in Canaan and not in Egypt. Egypt was a symbol of the world and Canaan, the Promised Land—heaven. Jacob’s sons told Pharaoh that they came to Egypt to live for a while, until the famine had gone Gen 47:4. Now, Jacob wanted his legacy to end with the belief in the same promise of his father Isaac and Isaac’s father Abraham that God would give them many descendants in the land of Canaan. Jacob chose his resting place to be with the Lord. This would speak to the hearts of his descendants that Egypt was not their home but the Promised Land Php 3:20. Unfortunately, they didn’t heed Jacob’s vision and God eventually had to free them from the bondage of Egypt.
Application: many people struggle with the same dilemma today, they call themselves followers of Christ but they love Egypt, the world, and don’t want to come out of her 2 Co 6:17. Jesus told his disciples that no one could serve two masters Mt 6:24, while John preached that the sinful desires came from the world and the love for the Father wasn’t found there 1 Jn 2:15,16. Joshua challenged the people of his day to choose whom they would serve Jos 24:15. Today, eternity awaits your decision.
WISDOM OF JOSEPH
Saturday May 28, 2022
You should answer, ‘Your servants have tended livestock from our boyhood on, just as our fathers did.’ Then you will be allowed to settle in the region of Goshen, for all shepherds are detestable to the Egyptians.” Joseph had a dilemma to settle. He wanted his family to be safe from the famine where he could meet their needs so moving to Egypt was necessary. However, the Egyptians saw shepherds as detestable, for they killed and ate animals that the Egyptians loved. The Egyptians had animals but that was left to the women to supervise. They were an agricultural people in a land that supported that kind of lifestyle. During the years, nomads would pass through and take whatever they wanted from the fields causing hatred towards wandering people like shepherds. On the hand, the Israelites abhorred Egypt’s idolatrous lifestyle and superstitions. These two cultures had their beginning in Abel and Cain. Abel was a shepherd and Cain a farmer, who despised his brother and killed him Gen 4:8. Joseph was aware of God’s promise to his father Jacob and didn’t want to have the Israelites intermingle with the Egyptians and eventually lose their identity. He could easily had given them positions in the Egyptian government causing jealousy amongst the Egyptians, so he was wise to counsel his father to tell Pharaoh that they were shepherds. Pharaoh would then allow them to be separated from the Egyptian people in Goshen.
Application: God had a plan for His people and Joseph was obedient and wise in keeping it intact by separating his family from the Egyptians. God has a plan for each of us and we sometimes miss the mark by pursuing worldly riches over spiritual values Mk 8:36. It is important to access what gifts God has given us and critically judge if we are using them for our glory or His.
Friday May 27, 2022.
So then, it was not you who sent me here, but God. He made me father to Pharaoh, lord of his entire household and ruler of all Egypt: God had a masterful plan revealing it to Joseph when he was seventeen years old Gen 37:2 through dreams which prophesied that his family would be subject to him Gen 37:9. Now twenty-two years later Gen 41:46,47 Joseph revealed himself to his brothers and calmed their fears, for they were thinking he might take revenge for their evil actions. Joseph stated that it was God that orchestrated the storyline for good, not for evil.
Application: do we believe that God can work all things out for our good Ro 8:28. Only if we trust Him and not become bitter. Joseph could easily have turned against God, for the trials he endured while living righteously, but he didn’t. He kept on doing good and was blessed at every turn in his life. Let us have the faith of Joseph and believe that God will work out all of our problems for good also.
THE GREAT EXCHANGE
Thursday May 26, 2022.
Now then, please let your servant remain here as my lord’s slave in place of the boy, and let the boy return with his brothers: Joseph planned a test to find out if his brothers had a change of heart since the days when they did harm to him. They had an opportunity to be set free of the accusation of theft at the expense of Benjamin. They chose the honorable option, proving that they were changed men in both their attitudes and in their behavior. Judah demonstrated true sacrificial love by his willingness to take the place of Benjamin, even though he had nothing to do with stealing the silver cup. He was willing to be imprisoned so that Benjamin could be set free.
Application: Judah was a beautiful type of Jesus, who took our judgment to set us free. Jesus also came from the tribe of Judah. Judah’s actions reconciled Joseph and his brothers while Jesus’ sacrifice reconciled us to God 2 Co 5:18. What a great exchange: Jesus gave us His righteousness and we gave Him our sins 2 Co 5:21. Satan our enemy has been defeated.
WORKS OR RELATIONSHIP
Wednesday May 25, 2022.
When Joseph came home, they presented to him the gifts they had brought into the house, and they bowed down before him to the ground: Jacob instructed his sons to bring gifts to Joseph to appease any feelings of retribution Gen 43:11. He had used this principle in the past with Esau Gen 32:18 and it brought about favorable results.
The silver was also to be returned in double, to pay for the new grain Gen 43:12. But when the brothers confessed about the silver incident, Joseph’s steward would not accept their gift Gen 43:23. When Joseph arrived, the brothers presented him with the gifts but he ignored their gesture Gen 43:26,27. Joseph showed them kindness and comforted their anxious hearts.
Application: we try to buy favor with God by giving Him our pistachio nuts as a gift Gen 43:11, but God cannot be bought by works. His favor comes through one and only one way. Relationship! By receiving Jesus as Saviour and Lord, we are welcomed into the family of God Jn 1:12. Joseph wasn’t swayed by the brothers’ generosity, he loved them because they were family. So, let us remember that God created us to freely choose to be part of His family, He will not coerce anyone in believing in His Son and He will honor our decision to be our own god or His child.
DREAMS DO COME TRUE
Tuesday May 24, 2022.
Then he remembered his dreams about them and said to them, “You are spies! You have come to see where our land is unprotected.” Years ago Joseph had two dreams, in one of them, the sun moon and the eleven stars were bowing before him Gen 37:9. This represented his father and mother and eleven siblings. Seeing his brothers bow down to him Gen 42:6 triggered this memory, and he decided to use the storyline that his brothers were spies, to gather more information on his family’s present situation.
Application: Joseph must have been amazed of how God was making his dreams become reality, and how the Lord had used all the difficulties to work for Joseph’s good Ro 8:28. Joseph was almost killed by his brothers but God delivered him by having the Midianite merchants purchase him as a slave Gen 37:28. He was promoted by Potiphar to run his whole household, but Potiphar’s wife lied and Joseph was thrown into prison Gen 39:20. He was then again promoted to handle all the prison duties and was able to interpret Pharaoh’s servants’ dreams, and for his willingness to have helped them, he asked the cupbearer to remember him when he was restored by Pharaoh, but the cupbearer forgot about Joseph Gen 40:23. Two years later Joseph was promoted by Pharaoh making him second in charge over Egypt and being in the position to be reconciled to his family and see his father again.
Has God given you a dream, but yet it is unfilled? Have you placed time limits on it like Abraham and Sarah did Gen 16:1,2? We must be patient and trust the Lord for He is true to all of His promises 2 Co 1:20. Jesus promised his followers that we would do greater works and whatever we asked to further His kingdom, He would do Jn 14:12,13.
A PROPHETIC PASSAGE FOR TODAY
Monday May 23, 2022.
This food should be held in reserve for the country, to be used during the seven years of famine that will come upon Egypt, so that the country may not be ruined by the famine: Pharaoh had asked Joseph to interpret his dreams because none of his magicians or wise men were able to understand them Gen 41:8. His answer from God was that there would be seven years of plenty, followed by seven years of famine. Joseph urged Pharaoh to prepare for this famine by storing food during the bountiful years.
Application: many Christians believe that we are close to entering into the seven-year tribulation period. The Cabal have been trying their best to ruin the economies of the world with the plandemic, high inflation, causing supply chain problems and now destroying food sources. So, shouldn’t we be following Joseph’s example, as some Christians believe—by stocking up on food, water, gold, silver and gun protection? If we examine the story with discernment, we see that God used Joseph for the people of Egypt, which is a symbol of the world. Joseph was acting in God’s care of the world’s people, as they should prepare, for they have no god but themselves. However, those who are God’s children, rely on God. Did Joseph send a message to his family, a heads up, start stocking up for the famine? No. Why? Because God provides for His true people. Jesus told His disciples not to worry about their lives, or what they should eat, drink or wear for their heavenly Father knows what they need. The pagans (the world) run after these things, but we don’t Mt 6:25,32. What we do, is seek to promote the kingdom of God through righteous living and trust that God provides whatever we need Mt 6:33.
But shouldn’t God’s people also be prepared? Jesus told Satan, we are not to put the Lord to the test Mt 4:7. Yes, I believe it is prudent to stock up on food, water and currency, other than the fiat dollar, but for short term only. If we do enter the final tribulation period, we aren’t going to be able to survive seven years—if the Lord doesn’t rapture us before the end.
Our time should be spent in prayer, in creative ways which God can use us to reach the lost, but not on how we are going to survive this famine.
TRUST IN GOD, NOT MAN
Sunday May 22, 2022.
The chief cupbearer, however, did not remember Joseph; he forgot him: Joseph had compassion for Pharaoh’s two servants Gen 40:7 and asked them why they were dejected. They told him that they both had a dream that no one could interpret for them. Joseph told them only God could interpret dreams and asked them to tell him their dreams. God gave Joseph the interpretations which was positive for the cupbearer and negative for the baker. Three days later, on Pharaoh’s birthday the dreams came true—the cupbearer’s position was restored and the baker was executed. Joseph had asked the cupbearer to remember him when the dream came true by having him released from prison, but the cupbearer forgot about Joseph. God inferred to this story when he prophesied to Israel that they didn’t care about anyone but themselves by mentioning drinking wine (cupbearer) and not grieving over the ruin of Joseph (by forgetting about Joseph) Amos 6:6.
Application: people of the world in trying circumstances sometimes cry out to God for help but when they are delivered quickly forget what God had accomplished on their behalf. I’m sure Joseph was dejected that the cupbearer forgot him, but he continued to trust God and waited on Him. Most would have forgotten what God had done for them in the past and would have become impatient and bitter with God Ps 106:13. Joseph was unaware of Ro 8:28, yet he followed that principle and God eventually blessed him, even more than Joseph could imagine Eph 3:20. In our difficulties let us not become resentful towards those who fail to remember us but fix our eyes on Jesus who never forgets or forsakes us Heb 13:5.
Saturday May 21, 2022.
She caught him by his cloak and said, “Come to bed with me!” But he left his cloak in her hand and ran out of the house: the Bible says to flee sexual immorality 1 Co 6:18 and Joseph did just that. However, Potiphar’s wife disdained rejection and lied to say that Joseph tried to rape her. Potiphar had Joseph thrown into prison but Joseph continued to trust God and found favor with the warden and was put in charge of all the prisoners Gen 39:22.
Application: Potiphar’s wife was sinful and tried to convince Joseph to have sex with her. He boldly stated that she belonged to her husband, and that her thoughts were wicked Gen 39:9. He refused to go to bed with her and even be with her Gen 39:10. How many spouses have ended up committing adultery because they broke this rule and continued in a relationship that was improper? We need to heed Joseph’s actions and flee immorality and not even be near it.
Friday May 20, 2022.
As she was giving birth, one of them put out his hand; so the midwife took a scarlet thread and tied it on his wrist and said, “This one came out first.” This is another picture of Jesus. This first baby put out his hand but when he withdrew it, his brother came out Gen 38:29. The scarlet thread points to the Cross and the blood Jesus split to save mankind from their sins, while going back into the womb represents the tomb. Then having the second baby break out depicts the resurrection. To confirm this truth, God included both babies in Jesus’ genealogy Mt 1:3.
Application: this story demonstrated the grace of God, as He included sinful Judah and Tamar into His holy genealogy. This truth should give us much hope when we fail our Lord, for He is rich in grace and has promised never to leave or forsake us Heb 13:5.
Thursday May 19, 2022.
Then they got Joseph’s robe, slaughtered a goat and dipped the robe in the blood: Joseph was a type of Jesus, in which we see many similarities in this story. Joseph spoke the truth about his brothers and gave them a bad report on their handling of the sheep Gen 37:2. Jesus told the Pharisees that they were poor shepherds of God’s people Mt 23:13. Joseph was loved by his father Gen 37:3 and Jesus was loved by His Father Mt 3:17.
Joseph’s coat of many colors was a symbol of honor, as it would have been very expensive to make, using many different dyes to complete this kind of ornate robe. Jesus has given us honor, when we trust in Him, as He clothed us in His coat of honor Gal 3:27 in His righteousness 2 Co 5:21.
Joseph’s brothers hated him Gen 37:4, were envious of him Gen 37:11, and plotted to kill him Gen 37:18. Jesus was hated by His brothers and envious because they saw Jesus winning the crowds and a threat to their job security Jn 11:48. They plotted to kill Him Mt 12:14.
Joseph’s brothers did not want him to reign over them Gen 37:8 while Jesus told a parable related to the Jewish leaders not wanting Him to reign over them Lk 19:27.
Joseph had another dream that showed that his family would bow down to him Gen 37:9. The Bible says that every knee will bow down to Jesus Php 2:10.
Joseph’s father sent him on a mission to check on the sheep Gen 37:14, whereas the Father sent Jesus on a mission to heal the sheep 1 Pe 2:24.
Joseph went to seek and find his brothers Gen 37:17, while Jesus came to earth to seek and save the lost Lk 19:10.
Reuben tried to save Joseph from death Gen 37:21, while Pilot tried to save Jesus from crucifixion Lk 23:13-16. Joseph’s brothers stripped him of his robe Gen 37:23, while the Roman soldiers stripped Jesus of His clothes Mk 15:24. Joseph was sold into slavery, an innocent man for twenty shekels of silver Gen 37:27, 28 while Jesus was sold to pay our slavery debt of sin for thirty pieces of silver Mt 26:14,15.
Reuben went back to the cistern to find Joseph but he was gone Gen 37:29,30, while Mary went back to the tomb and realized Jesus was gone Jn 20:1,2.
Joseph’s robe was dipped in blood Gen 37:31. Jesus was clothed in a robe dipped in blood Rev 19:13.
Gen 37:34 Jacob thought his son was dead and mourned for him. The disciples of Jesus thought he was dead and mourned for him Jn 20:13,14.
Application: if readers can’t see how inspired the Bible is from this one passage, then salvation is beyond their grasp.
LIPSTICK ON A PIG
Wednesday May 18, 2022.
Esau took his wives from the women of Canaan: Adah daughter of Elon the Hittite, and Oholibamah daughter of Anah and granddaughter of Zibeon the Hivite— 3 also Basemath daughter of Ishmael and sister of Nebaioth: Esau had weep as he asked his father if he only had one blessing Gen 27:38. The truth is that God blessed both sons but since Esau rejected the spiritual blessings, he only received material ones, while Jacob received both. Esau’s line was one of the flesh, more concerned with outer appearances and fleshly pleasures than spiritual realities. Lamech, a wicked person Gen 4:23,24, married two women, one was called Adah Gen 4:19. Her name must have conjured bad thoughts to Esau’s parents, as they recalled the lifestyle of that ungodly line Gen 26:34,35. All of Esau’s wives’ names were changed to present a more pleasant appearance.
34 When Esau was forty years old, he married Judith (also called Oholibamah Gen 36:2) daughter of Beeri (which means well, or Anah, who discovered the hot springs Gen 36:24) the Hittite, and also Basemath daughter of Elon the Hittite (Adah Gen 36:2). Gen 26:34
9 so he went to Ishmael and married Mahalath (called Basemath in Gen 36:3), the sister of Nebaioth and daughter of Ishmael son of Abraham, in addition to the wives he already had. Gen 28:9
Application: Just as Esau changed his wives’ names to give a better appearance, the world does the same today. We no longer call sexual immorality—adultery, but an affair; fornication, a fling; sodomy 1 Ki 14:24 KJV, a gay lifestyle; killing a baby, pro-choice; forced confinement, quarantine; forced restrictions, mandates; restricted from participating or losing one’s job because you are not following the dictators’ orders, the necessity to save lives through a vaccine passport.
Tuesday May 17, 2022.
So Jacob said to his household and to all who were with him, “Get rid of the foreign gods you have with you, and purify yourselves and change your clothes: Dinah being raped had caused a crisis situation. Jacob’s sons had destroyed the people of Shechem which caused God to impress on Jacob to go back to Bethel and settle there. It was the place where God had first appeared to Jacob, a high point in his life, and thus he would return and renew his faith and direction in life. An ungodly lifestyle had overtaken his family and Jacob was about to right the ship. Rachel had carried off her father’s idols and her children had continued the practice of worshipping foreign gods. Now Jacob commanded his household to get rid of their foreign gods and purify themselves to meet and serve the Lord. Jacob would build an altar at Bethel and renew his commitment to serve God Gen 35:3. Before leaving Shechem, he had all the idols and ear ring charms buried Gen 35:4. They also put on new clothes, a symbolic gesture that they had purified themselves from the filth of the world.
Application: we are to do the same—to put off the old man and put on the new Eph 4:22,23,24, to be clothed with Christ Gal 3:27. If you have lost your first love Rev 2:4, do as Jacob did. He returned to the place where he first discovered God and renewed his faith by worshipping God Gen 35:14 and committing to serving God wholeheartedly.
EMOTIONAL VS SPIRITUAL RESPONSE
Monday May 16, 2022.
Then Shechem said to Dinah’s father and brothers, “Let me find favor in your eyes, and I will give you whatever you ask: Shechem believed that money could overlook raping Jacob’s daughter and make all things right. He was holding Dinah in captivity while the negotiations were taking place Gen 34:26. On the other hand, what Simeon and Levi did was also wrong. They lied while making an agreement to give Dinah to Shechem in marriage, if all Shechem men were circumcised. They used God’s sacred covenant as a lie to defeat their enemy. To make their evil even worse, they carried off the community’s wealth, women and children Gen 34:29. Jacob condemned the brothers’ actions, explaining that it made him obnoxious to all the people in the land, and possibly, the people would unite to war against Jacob.
Application: when in a difficult situation, first turn to God for counsel, then act upon His advice. Relying on emotions or human wisdom will lead to more problems.
Sunday May 15, 2022.
But Esau said, “I already have plenty, my brother. Keep what you have for yourself.” Esau had many good character qualities: he forgave Jacob for deceiving him; brotherly love, as he kissed and wept over Jacob Gen 33:4. Esau was inquisitive wanting to know more about Jacob’s family Gen 33:5. He was upright, not greedy as he didn’t want to take advantage of Jacob by taking his material possessions Gen 33:9. He was obliging when Jacob insisted on Esau keeping his gifts Gen 33:11. Esau was amicable, as he wanted them to travel together Gen 33:12 and thoughtful, wanting to make Jacob’s journey easier by the help of his men Gen 33:15.
So why does God show such disdain for Esau and such love for Jacob Mal 1:2,3? Jacob had a much less desirable character than Esau. Jacob deceived both Esau and Isaac, and distrusted God in protecting him and yet is loved more by God. The answer is found in Esau’s statement, “I already have plenty.” He does not acknowledge that his wealth has come from the hand of God, whereas Jacob declared everything he had was because of God Gen 33:5.
Application: there are many well thought of celebrities, athletes and artists, but if they aren’t crediting God for their success, then they are as godless as Esau Heb 12:16. It is faith in God, not in oneself that gets one into the kingdom of light. If you desire eternal life, you must acknowledge Jesus’ sacrifice for your sins and die to self-rule and live for His rule.
LEANING ON GOD
Saturday May 14, 2022.
Gen 32:31 Adobe Color: 512c1e
The sun rose above him as he passed Peniel, and he was limping because of his hip: Jacob had been in great distress because he had sent his messengers to Esau to explain that he was returning home Gen 32:7. But now, Esau was coming to meet Jacob with four hundred men Gen 32:6. That night Jacob stayed behind and while alone had a wrestling bout with a stranger Gen 32:24. Jacob fought all night long and wouldn’t let the man go, so the man touched his hip and wrenched it out of place Gen 32:25. The man told Jacob to let him go but Jacob wept and begged for a blessing Hos 12:4. The man asked Jacob what his name was. Many years earlier Jacob had deceived his father by saying that he was Esau. Now, he humbles himself and admits that he is Jacob—a deceiver. The man told Jacob that he has struggled with God and would receive a new name, Israel meaning: Jacob struggled with God and overcame Gen 32:28.
Application: After that night, Jacob needed a staff to support him because of his dislocated hip Heb 11:21. He no longer was the trickster, who relied on his intelligence to get him what he wanted. He was now Israel, who would lean on God every step of his remaining journey.
We need to learn this secret. Everyone is coping with some type of pain in their lives—be it physical, emotional, economical or relational. But have we learned to lean on God and move forward despite the hardship? The lame man, who had been an invalid for thirty-eight years was healed by Jesus and rejoiced. But did it change him to serve Jesus? No Jn 5:14. If God does heal you, remember the reason God allowed your suffering—to keep you trusting on Jesus.
TRUST GOD, NOT IDOLS
Friday May 13, 2022.
When Laban had gone to shear his sheep, Rachel stole her father’s household gods: Jacob explained to his wives that God had told him to leave the land as Laban’s attitude toward him had changed for the worse Gen 31:2,3. Jacob only took the possessions that belonged to him, but Rachel had gone into her father’s tent and had stolen Laban’s idols. We are not told why Rachel did this, perhaps she felt she deserved some repayment for the deceitful things her father did to Jacob, or perhaps they were a comfort that could help her deal with the uncertainty of their new future. Jacob was being pursued by Laban and was heading toward Esau, who previously wanted to kill him. Rachel would rely on her childhood idols while Jacob trusted in the Lord to protect him Gen 31:3,13. It was God’s grace that protected Jacob and Rachel. First, God protected Jacob by warning Laban in a dream not to say anything against him Gen 31:24. Then, Jacob vowed, if any person stole Laban’s idols, he or she would die Gen 31:32. God was gracious to both Jacob and Rachel, not to allow Laban to find his idols hidden on Rachel’s camel Gen 31:34.
Application: are we going to place our trust in worldly idols—money, politicians, fake news or trust the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Even though we have failed God many times in our past, He is merciful and willing to give us another opportunity, if we repent and trust Him. Although Jacob was going from the frying pan to the fire, from Laban to Esau, he had God protecting him and there is no safer place than in His hands!
Thursday May 12, 2022.
When Rachel saw that she was not bearing Jacob any children, she became jealous of her sister. So she said to Jacob, “Give me children, or I’ll die!” Ironically, Rachel’s statement “Give me children or I’ll die” did come true. While she was about to bear her second child, she died Gen 35:18,19. Jealousy in Rachel and feeling unloved by Leah led to the ungodly decision of allowing their servants to sleep with Jacob Gen 2:24, and causing much conflict amongst the children Gen 37:26,27. Rachel also relied on superstition, believing the mandrake fruit known as love apples could make her pregnant, which it did not. Despite Rachel using worldly means to inherit the promise to have her line blessed by God, the Lord honored her with Joseph and Benjamin. The Lord also honored unloved Leah by giving her Judah Gen 29:35, whom the Lord came from Mt 1:2,16.
Application: whenever we rely on worldly wisdom, we are going to experience pain. These two sisters became rivals competing against each other because of Laban’s deceitful action. Rachel and Leah were placed into this predicament, not by their own volition, yet resorted to unloving means to find a satisfying solution that never came to fruition. Had they obeyed God’s commandments they would have seen even more grace from God and experienced peace and contentment throughout their years.
THE DECEIVER IS DECEIVED
Wednesday May 11, 2022.
When morning came, there was Leah! So Jacob said to Laban, “What is this you have done to me? I served you for Rachel, didn’t I? Why have you deceived me?” Jacob had made an agreement with Laban to work for him seven years in return to marry his daughter Rachel, but Laban deceived Jacob and replaced Rachel with his older daughter Leah. He now had to work another seven years to receive Rachel, after his wedding week with Leah was completed.
Application: Jacob deceived his brother Esau twice and now he is on the receiving end of trickery. The Bible says that we will reap what we sow Gal 6:7. God’s Word is the pathway to peace and joy, whereas the world will try to draw us into lusts and self-pleasures. All corruption from the world comes from lusts 2 Pe 1:4 NKJV. God has given us His Holy Spirit to guide us into victory by knowing and obeying the truth Jn 8:31,32. We are to take every thought captive and make it obedient to Christ 2 Co 10:3,4,5. God has set before us blessing and cursing and exhorts us to choose life Dt 30:19.
Tuesday May 10, 2022.
Early the next morning Jacob took the stone he had placed under his head and set it up as a pillar and poured oil on top of it: Jacob summarized this event by saying it was a picture of God’s house Gen 28:22. The stone represented Jesus, the Living Stone and Jacob—God’s people, the living stones 1 Pe 2:4,5. We are to be pillars, or support for the Church Rev 3:12 and its Gospel message. The oil symbolized the Holy Spirit, who would guide the Church after Pentecost Jn 16:13. All three members of the Trinity are depicted at this happening, with the Father speaking to Jacob in the dream Gen 28:13, Jesus portrayed as the stairway or bridge to life between heaven and earth Gen 28:12, Jn 1:51 and the Holy Spirit being poured out on the Church (rock) Gen 28:18, Ac 2:17.
Application: Jacob used the stone (Jesus) as a pillow to rest throughout the night. Jesus was pictured as the Sabbath Rest Heb 4:9,10 and all who were weary and heavy ladened should come to Him as He would give them rest Mt 11:28,29.
NAME: OLD OR NEW?
Monday May 9, 2022.
Esau said, “Isn’t he rightly named Jacob? This is the second time he has taken advantage of me: He took my birthright, and now he’s taken my blessing!” Then he asked, “Haven’t you reserved any blessing for me?” Jacob deceived Esau Gen 27:35 and Esau responded, “Isn’t he living up to his name?” Pr 22:1 stated that a good name is to be chosen over great riches. Jacob was preferred over Esau by God Ro 9:10-13, but rather than trusting God, as David did by not usurping the throne from Saul 1 Sa 24:10, he used trickery.
Application: Jacob received a new name (Israel), after he struggled all night with God, wanting a blessing Gen 32:28. We receive a new name when we give up our self-life and receive Christ’s life 2 Co 5:17; Jn 1:12. To the victorious—those who trust in Jesus, He promised to give each a white stone with a new name written on it, known only to the one who receives it Rev 2:17. Jesus also promised never to blot out our name from the book of life Rev 3:5 and finally Jesus will write on us the name of His God and His new name Rev 3:12.
LACK OF GODLY DIRECTION
Sunday May 8, 2022.
They were a source of grief to Isaac and Rebekah: Abraham made it clear that God desired the lineage to come from his descendants, not from foreign nations Gen 24:3,4. Esau married two Canaanite women Gen 26:34 thus preventing him from being part of God’s covenant that would bless the world. Esau was also described as a sexual immoral and godless man Heb 12:16. Esau wives were also a source of grief to Isaac and Rebekah, probably influencing Esau from the true God to idols and an immoral lifestyle.
Application: some of the guilt has to be placed on Isaac, as he did not guide Esau to a godly wife, but allowed him to choose his own path. We are to train up our children in God’s ways and point them to fruitful purposes in serving the Lord. Not giving our children godly direction allows Satan to assume the role of guidance teacher in which he will lead our children into destruction.
DESPISE NOT, YOUR BIRTHRIGHT
Saturday May 7, 2022.
Then Jacob gave Esau some bread and some lentil stew. He ate and drank, and then got up and left. So Esau despised his birthright: the birthright gave the firstborn a double portion of his father’s inheritance Dt 21:17. This included the spiritual relationship with God through the covenant with Abraham, which Esau had little interest in. He was described as sexually immoral and ungodly by the writer of Hebrews Heb 12:16. Esau placed value in the physical not the spiritual realm and thus was described as despising his birthright.
Application: the Bible contrasts the choices between the physical and spiritual, and encourages us to seek the unseen over the seen, the eternal over the temporal 2 Co 4:18. We are motivated to set our minds on things above, heavenly realities, not on earthly things Col 3:2. Living by the flesh results in death whereas the mind governed by the spirit leads to life and peace Ro 8:6. Esau was short-sighted believing if his material needs were not met then spiritual benefits would be of little value. We are to use this worldly life to store up riches in heaven Mt 6:19,20. There is no bigger fool who lives for the temporal and forsakes the eternal.
Friday May 6, 2022.
He said to the senior servant in his household, the one in charge of all that he had, “Put your hand under my thigh: in this story God is portraying the future Pentecost event—the mission of believers in the gathering of the bride of Christ. Abraham represented the Father, Isaac the Son, the angel Gen 24:7, the Holy Spirit and the senior servant in the household, the believer. God has commissioned us servants as the one in charge of all that he had. Jesus ascended into heaven leaving the mission to believers but He did not leave us orphans, as He sent His Holy Spirit to guide us in the mission to find brides for Christ Jn 14:16-18. Abraham told his servant to place his hand under his thigh, the most sacred part of man’s body, from which life is created. This was a binding oath, which began with God’s circumcision covenant with Abraham Gen 17:10,11 and later followed by Jacob with Joseph Gen 47:29. Our mission is to give life to spiritual dead people.
Application: the servant used prayer to guide him in his mission Gen 24:12. When he successfully explained the commission, it was Rebekah who made the decision to seek Isaac Gen 24:58. When she arrived in Isaac’s presence, he brought her into his tent and married her. When we receive Christ’s invitation, He takes us into the Holy of Holies and communes with us intimately.
THE GRAVE: END OR BEGINNING?
Thursday May 5, 2022.
Abraham agreed to Ephron’s terms and weighed out for him the price he had named in the hearing of the Hittites: four hundred shekels of silver, according to the weight current among the merchants. Abraham wept when Sarah died, a natural response to the loss of a loved one. Jesus did the same at the tomb of Lazarus Jn 11:35. But for Christians we know that we will see our loved ones again and must continue to go forward in this life after we have gone through the grieving period. Abraham turned his attention to acquiring a burial place for Sarah and his descendants, for he trusted in God’s promise to give him the land that he was currently a foreigner. He originally wanted a cave but Ephron offered the field with the cave, free of any payment. Abraham would not accept it as a gift, for God promised him this land and he was willing to purchase a stake in it, rather than take it as a gift. Ephron didn’t allow Abraham to barter a price as he told him it was worth four hundred shekels Gen 23:15. Abraham accepted the price and purchased the property.
Application: purchasing the property set roots or a home for all of Abraham’s descendants. Joseph and his brothers carried Jacob’s body back to Canaan to bury him in their home land Gen 50:13. When the Israelites were freed from their bondage in Egypt they did not know where to go, since they didn’t have any home except Egypt and therefore headed for Canaan (the home of Abraham’s descendants).
We have a home that we are going to be going shortly. Let us keep our eyes our working as foreigners in this world, for soon we will be returning to our heavenly home to spend eternity with our Lord.
Wednesday May 4, 2022.
Abraham took the wood for the burnt offering and placed it on his son Isaac, and he himself carried the fire and the knife. As the two of them went on together: God had told Abraham to take his son Isaac to Mount Moriah and sacrifice him Gen 22:2. This was to test Abraham Gen 22:1, to see if he would obey God. Abraham obeyed the Lord and therefore all nations would be blessed through him Gen 22:18. This story prophesied what would happen to God’s one and only Son. Isaac was a type of Jesus, who had the wood for the sacrifice placed on his back, just as Jesus was forced to carry His cross Jn 19:17. However, Isaac was spared and a ram was offered in his place Gen 22:13.
Application: before I came to know Christ, one summer I decided to read through the Bible and find out if it was true. I began at the beginning but when I read today’s chapter, I put down the Bible and was convinced it wasn’t true. My God, would never command me to kill my son. This story was bizarre! However, eight years later, I was confronted by my neighbour with the Gospel and I told him, I didn’t believe the Bible, as God would never had told Abraham to kill his son. My neighbour explained the story demonstrating that sinners couldn’t pay for their sins, and that is why the Father had to send His, one and only Son, whom He loved to die for mankind’s sins. It was like a lightbulb that turned on and I understood the Gospel for the first time. The next morning, I trusted in Christ and His Word!
Tuesday May 3, 2022.
Gen 21:33 Adobe Color: 512c1e
Abraham planted a tamarisk tree in Beersheba, and there he called on the name of the Lord, the Eternal God: conflict arose when Abimelek’s servants seized one of Abraham’s wells Gen 21:25. After making a treaty, Abraham gave Abimelek seven lambs as a gift in recognition that the well was Abraham’s to avoid future conflicts Gen 21:30. Abimelek accepted Abraham’s gift and returned to the land of the Philistines. After the conflict was settled Abraham planted a tamarisk tree and worshiped the Eternal God for protecting his people and their land.
Application: the tamarisk tree would be a reminder to Abraham’s descendants that God was faithful to His promises, as it would take a long time for the tree to grow. God would always be their protector. We have the same sure promises that God will protect us 2 Ti 4:18 and meet all our needs Php 4:19 and never leave or forsake us Heb 13:5.
Monday May 2, 2022.
And there Abraham said of his wife Sarah, “She is my sister.” Then Abimelek king of Gerar sent for Sarah and took her: what is amazing to me, not that Sarah conceived at ninety years old Gen 17:17; Gen 21:2 but she was so attractive that King Abimelek wanted her as his own, and previously, at the age of sixty-five, Pharoah of Egypt took her into his palace because of her beauty Gen 12:14,15. Because of this, Abraham had told Sarah to lie and say she was his sister, for he feared he would be put to death, in order for the king to claim Sarah for himself.
Application: God had to intervene two times to save Sarah, which should have been Abraham’s role—to trust God to protect both of them. When we fail to trust God and allow fear to motivate us to walk by sight, we will experience disaster. The safest place is in God’s hands, trusting in His sovereignty to work all things out for our good Ro 8:28.
LIVING AMONGST SIN
Sunday May 1, 2022.
But Lot’s wife looked back, and she became a pillar of salt: the angels had explained the urgency to flee and not to tarry Gen 19:17. Lot’s wife looked back, missing what she was leaving behind and God turned her into a pillar of salt. They were all reluctant to leave, being comfortable living amongst sin Gen 19:16. The true character of the girls came out later when they got their father drunk and got pregnant by him Gen 19:35,36.
Application: Jesus warned us that when He returns, people will be living like in the days of Lot, not concerned about God’s will, only about their personal lives Lk 17:28,30. Then judgment was dispensed, remember what happened to Lot’s wife Lk 17:31,32.
Peter called Lot, righteous as he was distressed by the depraved conduct of the lawless 2 Pe 2:7. However, living in that environment had hardened Lot’s heart to the sensitivity of holiness 1 Co 15:33. He had offered his daughters to the lustful crowd Gen 19:8, which was appalling for a father to do to his children under his protection. He later was coerced into getting drunk, two nights in a row and having sex with his daughters, which he had not realized had occurred Gen 19:35,36. James warned of the dangers of friendship with the world Jas 4:4 and Paul exhorted believers to separate from the ungodly 2 Co 6:14-17. Failure to separate from sin desensitizes our consciences, allowing a little leaven to destroy us completely Gal 5:9.
IMPORTANCE OF FELLOWSHIP
Saturday April 30, 2022.
So Abraham hurried into the tent to Sarah. “Quick,” he said, “get three seahs of the finest flour and knead it and bake some bread: the grain offering was to be without leaven Lev 2:11 and here Sarah prepared a meal for Abraham to fellowship with three men, one, who later was revealed as the Lord. Jesus told a kingdom of heaven parable about a woman who mixed leaven into three measures of meal which caused the whole to become leavened. The message of this parable was that false teachers would corrupt the fellowship of the church with their heresies. The grain offering reminded the people of the feast of Unleavened Bread where the house would be swept clean of leaven, a picture of cleansing of sin, foreshadowing the Passover, and pointing to Jesus, the sinless Passover lamb 1 Co 5:7. This meal provided Abraham with an opportunity to convince God not to destroy Sodom if ten righteous men could be found, unfortunately they couldn’t be found.
Application: because of the false teachings that have entered our churches, true fellowship has been replaced with divisions, bickering, intolerance and coldness destroying God’s original purpose. Just as Abraham was able to convince God not to destroy Sodom if He found ten righteous people, we need to restore pure fellowship without leaven, to love Body members rather than argue with them. In the beginning days of the church, there was rich fellowship Ac 2:44-47. Co-vid has destroyed much of our fellowship, both preventing it and causing divisions, but we must obey God’s command to fellowship Heb 10:25 and love one another, for love covers a multitude of sins 1 Pe 4:8.
SIGN OF CIRCUMCISION
Friday April 29, 2022.
You are to undergo circumcision, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and you: God told Abram that circumcision—the cutting off of the foreskin would be a sign of ownership, of those who belonged to God. Failure to adhere to the procedure would cut that person off from the community Gen 17:14. Its symbolism related to purity, a willingness to turn from selfish (fleshly) desires to a desire to please God. In the New Covenant, Paul taught the necessity of circumcision of the heart Ro 2:29. It was not sufficient to have the physical foreskin cut off, but to have the selfish heart circumcised, in order to serve God and not self/flesh.
Application: outward signs are nice but if there isn’t any reality on the inside, the sign is meaningless. If you call yourself a Christian, that doesn’t make you one. It is the actions that prove one’s faith is true Jas 2:26.
DOUBTING GOD’S PROMISE
Thursday April 28, 2022.
So she said to Abram, “The Lord has kept me from having children. Go, sleep with my slave; perhaps I can build a family through her.” Abram agreed to what Sarai said: God had promised to give Abram a son but impatience caused Sarai and Abram to consider human ways to bring about a child. The result was Sarai’s slave Hagar despised her mistress after she got pregnant. In return, Sarai mistreated Hagar causing her to run away Gen 16:6.
Application: whenever we doubt God’s promises and decide to help Him out by our human wisdom, we are going to experience disaster. Faith in God’s promises will in the end, come to fruition, so we mustn’t doubt even when we can’t understand why God hasn’t answered. He is God and His ways are much higher than ours Isa 55:9.
GOD’S MARVELOUS PLAN
Wednesday April 27, 2022.
Then birds of prey came down on the carcasses, but Abram drove them away: Abram had asked God how he could know that he would gain possession of the land in which the Lord had promised Gen 15:8. God’s answer was that He would make a covenant with Abram Gen 15:9. Interestingly, God had Abram cut the animals in two but not the birds Gen 15:10. This was a picture of the New Covenant in which Jesus ratified, for it was prophesied that not one bone would be broken Jn 19:36; Ex 12:46. In Abram’s vision while he waited for the Lord to ratify the agreement, birds of prey came down on the carcasses, a picture of Satan trying to thwart God’s plans Mt 13:4,19. While Jesus hung on the Cross, the crowd mocked Him Mt 27:39-44, obviously influenced by Satan, wanting Jesus to react and fail in His mission.
Application: this story prophesied the coming Savior, who would ratify the New Covenant and fulfill the promise given to Abram. In Gen 14:18, Melchizedek brought out bread and wine to celebrate Abram’s victory. At the Passover meal, Jesus instituted the remembrance of His sacrifice with bread and wine. Although, the Passover lamb was killed at the beginning of the fourteenth day of Aviv, just after sunset Dt 16:1, Ex 12:6, Jesus did not die until the late afternoon of that day. This discrepancy is because God was using Abram’s covenant, not the Passover feast to symbolize the covenant with Abram. Abram looked at the stars (matching the beginning of the fourteenth at sunset) Gen 15:5, then later prepared the animals Gen 15:10, then when the sun was setting (the next day), he fell into a deep sleep and dreadful darkness came over him Gen 15:12. Before Jesus was crucified, darkness came over the land for three hours Lk 23:44, which was a picture from Ex 10:21,22 of God’s plague of darkness on the Egyptians for three days.
Abraham was promised the land as an inheritance forever Ex 32:13, but he died and therefore the promise was the spiritual land of eternal life, in which all of us can inherit through faith in Christ, just as Abram had done Gen 15:6.
Tuesday April 26, 2022.
Then Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine. He was priest of God Most High: Melchizedek is a type or picture of Jesus. He was a king-priest, when these two titles were usually kept separate. When King Uzziah attempted to burn incense inside the temple (priestly duty) , God struck him with leprosy 2 Chr 26:16,19. However, Melchizedek was picturing Jesus, who is our king Rev 19:16 and high priest Heb 4:14. Melchizedek also blessed Abram and praised God and thus portrayed himself as a mediator between man and God, just as Jesus was 1 Ti 2:5. He also gave bread and wine to Abram, foreshadowing Jesus’ command to remember Him through the bread (His body given up for our sins) and the wine (His shed blood that brought us into a new covenant with God).
Application: we see through Melchizedek pictures of Jesus confirming the truth of the Bible that Jesus was prophesied to be the coming Messiah. There is sufficient evidence for all to put their trust in Jesus, to save them from eternal damnation. It’s not a question of insufficient evidence but unwillingness of one to submit to Christ’s Lordship.
GOD DESIRES PEACE
Monday April 25, 2022.
So Abram said to Lot, “Let’s not have any quarreling between you and me, or between your herders and mine, for we are close relatives: the land could not support both Abram and Lot, which led the herders to quarrel. Abram realized this could get worse so he told Lot since they were close relatives, he would separate from Lot. Abram allowed Lot to choose which land he desired and would make his home in the opposite direction.
Application: God wanted His people to be at peace with each other. Abram was willing to obey this command, even if it meant that Lot would receive the choicest land. In the end, God blessed Abram’s actions while Lot had to deal with wicked Sodom.
Sunday April 24, 2022.
The Lord had said to Abram, “Go from your country, your people and your father’s household to the land I will show you: God told Abram to leave his country, his nation’s people and his father’s family to travel to a place that God would direct him to. This would require great faith to leave all of his family’s relatives and friends and journey to an unknown area. What would Sarai and family think when he told them that they would be packing up their possessions and heading somewhere, but he wasn’t sure where? No wonder Abraham was known as a man of faith.
Application: would we have been as obedient as Abram, if God called us to leave our home to venture to an unknown location? Faith is trusting in God rather than in ourselves and desiring to do God’s will rather than our own. For his obedience, God made Abraham, the father of the Jewish nation and blessed the entire world through his offspring Jesus Gen 3:15.
Saturday, April 23, 2022.
Then they said, “Come, let us build ourselves a city, with a tower that reaches to the heavens, so that we may make a name for ourselves; otherwise we will be scattered over the face of the whole earth.” God had told Noah to fill the earth Gen 9:1 but here we see rebellious man doing everything opposite of God’s commands. He wanted to build a city which means people would be dependent upon each other to supply their needs and not on God, making it much easier for a dictator to control the masses. He wanted to build a tower to reach the heavens, symbolic of being his own god, where man’s name would be worshipped for his greatness. He knowingly did not want to fill the earth for there is power in unity, whereas division makes a nation weak Mk 3:25.
Application: God thwarted Satan’s attempt to usurp His authority by confusing man’s language so that he stopped the construction of the tower and settled amongst his own languages.
DIVIDING AND UNITING
Friday April 22, 2022.
Two sons were born to Eber: One was named Peleg, because in his time the earth was divided; his brother was named Joktan. Peleg means division and thus he was named because in his days (101 years after the flood Gen 11:10-16) God divided the people’s universal speech Gen 11:1 into many different languages because they had failed to heed His command to fill the earth Gen 9:1. This confusion of languages led to different nations settling together in which they were able to communicate with each other.
Application: The people of the earth were disobedient to God’s will and therefore He divided them into many nations by causing communication barriers. On Pentecost, God reversed the communication barriers Ac 2:6 with the uniting of the people through the Church, which Jesus established through His death and resurrection. It was the Holy Spirit who united believers to Christ. Just as Adam and Eve became one flesh Eph 5:31,32, believers now are one in spirit with the Lord 1 Co 6:17.
Thursday April 21, 2022.
But Shem and Japheth took a garment and laid it across their shoulders; then they walked in backward and covered their father’s naked body. Their faces were turned the other way so that they would not see their father naked: Noah planted a vineyard and one night got drunk on wine and lay uncovered in his tent Gen 9:21. Ham saw his father naked and told his two brothers Gen 9:22. While Ham mocked his father, Shem and Japheth showed reverence to Noah and covered up his nakedness Gen 9:23. When Noah discovered what had happened, he cursed Ham and blessed Shem and Japheth.
Application: Ham exposed Noah’s sin while Shem and Japheth covered it up. Peter taught that love covered a multitude of sins 1 Pe 4:8. We are to be like the reverent sons and not expose others’ sins but cover them up. The Pharisees were always pointing their finger at others, exposing their minor flaws which caused Jesus to describe their behaviour like straining out a gnat but swallowing a camel Mt 23:24. Jesus said to judge righteously Jn 7:24 and to be merciful Mt 5:7.
LAND AND WATER
Wed April 20, 2022.
But the dove could find nowhere to perch because there was water over all the surface of the earth; so it returned to Noah in the ark. He reached out his hand and took the dove and brought it back to himself in the ark: the dove is a symbol of the Holy Spirit. He was hovering over the waters at the beginning of creation Gen 1:2. He returned after finding no place to rest, the waters still covered the land. The land represented those who are dependent upon Christ Jn 15:5, who have been given the Promised Land Gen 12:7; whereas the waters represented foreign nations Rev 17:15, people in opposition to God Isa 17:12. Noah received the dove and brought it back to himself, a picture of fellowship with God (Noah’s name means rest Gen 5:29), just as the dove rested on Jesus Mt 3:16, the One who gives rest Mt 11:28.
Application: we must receive the Holy Spirit, allow Him to control our lives. We are the ones that are saved from the raging waters Ps 18:16,17. Those described in the waters are rebellious, desiring to live independent of God Jude 1:13; Jer 46:7,8. Just as God destroyed all the people in Noah’s day by the flood waters, He will destroy all the rebellious people (waters) in the end Rev 21:1.
THE NUMBER 40
Tuesday April 19, 2022.
And rain fell on the earth forty days and forty nights: the number forty is symbolic for a testing period. Moses and the Israelites were in the desert for forty years and failed the faith test Heb 3:7,8,9. Jesus was tested by Satan after forty days in the wilderness Mt 4:1,2,3 and passed the trust test Lk 4:13. Here, the world had the opportunity to believe Noah Heb 11:7, as many would have questioned him of why he was building the ark, allowing Noah to preach righteousness and judgment 2 Pe 2:5. Jesus explained that the people of Noah’s days refused to repent Lk 17:26,27. Jonah proclaimed that Nineveh would be destroyed in forty days if they failed to repent Jnh 3:4.
Application: we go through testing periods today, but rather than seeing these as punishments, James taught us to welcome trials, as they help build our character Jas 1:2,3,4. A trial is an opportunity to draw near to God in prayer Jas 4:8 and rely on Him to comfort us 2 Co 1:3,4 and by doing so, get to know God better and trust more in His faithfulness.
Monday April 18, 2022.
Then the Lord said, “My Spirit will not contend with humans forever, for they are mortal; their days will be a hundred and twenty years.” The Lord regretted that He had created mankind Gen 6:6 since their every thought were evil Gen 6:5. So He limited them to 120 years to repent or He would destroy the entire creation.
Application: we find ourselves in a similar position as in Noah’s days. Many have turned their backs on God and He is about to allow the Antichrist to rule ruthlessly. He gave those people 120 years to repent but we are not told when Jesus will return only that the time is short.
Sunday April 17, 2022.
Enoch walked faithfully with God; then he was no more, because God took him away: Enoch walked faithfully with God meaning he did all that God commanded him, while he rebuked the people of his day for their ungodly acts and prophesied of their future judgment Jude 1:14,15. Walking with God also speaks of communion and intimacy. Enoch experienced the presence of God. It was God’s mercy to remove Enoch from the evil people he lived amongst for Enoch pleased God. He did not sufferdeath but was translated into the spiritual realm Heb 11:5. The Holy Spirit also used this event, along with Elijah’s departure into heaven 2 Ki 2:11 to point to a future rapture of God’s people in the last days 1 Th 4:16,17.
Application: let us strive to walk with God and experience His presence as Enoch did. We are in the last days Ac 2:17 and may be the fortunate ones, who like Enoch and Elijah had the privilege to taste the rapture.
RULING OVER SIN
Saturday April 16, 2022.
If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must rule over it: God told Cain if he did what was right—to offer a blood sacrifice, he would be accepted. Although Cain was a farmer, he would have had access to animals, just as Abel, who was a shepherd would have opportunities to acquire fruit and vegetables. The problem was not acquiring the offering but a hardened heart. God explained to Cain that sin desired to consume him, but he could rule over it by humbling himself and giving the required sacrifice. Instead Cain turned his anger onto his brother Abel, to wipe out his competition.
Application: we must learn to rule over sin in our lives. Our flesh desires to fulfill its needs but God requires us to honor Him and His commands. The only way to have success is to die to self-rule and allow the Holy Spirit to control our actions in line with God’s will.
Friday April 15, 2022.
Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves: why couldn’t Adam and Eve see through the lies of Satan? Firstly, Eve gave Satan some misinformation that maybe Adam told her, to strengthen God’s words, to not eat from the forbidden tree. She told Satan that if they touched the tree they would die Gen 3:3. Now, all Satan would have to do is lean against the tree and prove that God was a liar. This would have put doubt in Eve’s mind about God’s motives and may have led her to agree with Satan that God was jealous and didn’t want them to become like Him Gen 3:5. Seeing that the fruit was good for food and desirable for gaining wisdom, she decided to trust Satan and take a bite Gen 3:6. Now, their eyes are opened and they can see clearly that they have been tricked, so the cover-up of their sin begins with the sewing of fig leaves to hide their unrighteousness.
Application: instead of taking responsibility for their actions Adam and Eve blame others, yet God is full of mercy and killed an animal to cover their sin Gen 3:21. His ultimate plan is to restore Eden through His Son’s sacrifice. The rest of the story is repeated—sin, judgment, mercy, reconciliation until Jesus finally comes back and restores Eden. We are getting close to that day!
Thursday April 14, 2022.
So the Lord God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took one of the man’s ribs and then closed up the place with flesh: God anesthetized Adam, then used one of his ribs to extract DNA to create Eve. Adam, originally had all traits—male and female, but the creation of Eve left Adam with only male genes and Eve with female traits. This is why a man, when joined to his wife become one flesh again, for the woman completes the man as God originally created Adam Gen 2:24. She is truly man’s helpmate.
Application: a man joined with a woman becomes one in flesh with her 1 Co 6:16, while a man who is united with the Lord is one with God in spirit 1 Co 6:17. Human marriage is a wonderful picture of our ultimate marriage to Jesus Rev 19:7,8. Just as woman was created to be man’s helpmate, we were created to be God’s servant for His good pleasure Rev 4:11 KJV.
Wednesday April 13, 2022.
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth: God also placed a hidden message revealing the storyline of history in His creation account. Day one, God created the Kingdom of Light to counteract the Kingdom of Darkness Gen 1:5 which He desired all men to receive 2 Pe 3:9. Day two, God gave man a choice between being born from above with Living Water Jn 7:38 or to be his own god from natural water birth. Day three was the resurrection from the water to the land, just as Jonah experienced Jnh 2:10—the new birth. Day four the Gospel is revealed—Jesus the Light of the world Jn 8:12 and is shared by His ambassadors 2 Co 5:20, like the moon, which reflects God’s light Mt 5:14,15,16. Day five is the preparation for battle, just as David gathered five smooth stones 1 Sa 17:40 on his way to defeat Goliath. We battle against the evil spiritual forces in the heavenly realms Eph 6:12 while we drag the lost from the waters of death Jn 21:9,10,11. Day six man was told to take dominion of the earth and teach God’s truths to all of mankind Gen 1:28.
Application: for those who heed God’s veiled Good News, He promised an eternity of rest in His presence Heb 4:3; 1 Th 4:17.