Reading #1 – Genesis 35
Reading #2 – Psalms 17
Reading #3 – Proverbs 3
Reading #4 – Ezekiel 35
Reading #5 – Job 32
Genesis 35 – Jacob Moves to Beth-El. So now Jacob has 12 sons with the birth of Benjamin (23-26). It was at this point that Lord G_d told Jacob to leave Paddan-Arm and go to the place where the Lord G_d appeared to him years earlier. Jacob told his family to get rid of the idols, omens, and charms and prepare to move to Beth-El. The stuff was buried near the oak tree near Schechem (1-4). Before Jacob and his family arrived, G_d scared the inhabitants off and made them afraid to chase the Hebrew nation. Once the nation arrived in Beth-El, Jacob built an altar and called it “El Beth-El” or the G_d of the House of G_d. While Jacob was on the run from Esau, it was in this plot of ground that the Lord appeared to Jacob (5-8). Because of his obedience, Jacob was renamed by the Lord G_d to Israel the name the Angel called him at Mahanaim or place of “two camps” (Genesis 32:24-31). On the journey from Beth-El to Ephrath which would in the future be called “Bethlehem”, Rachel gave birth to Benjamin and died during the delivery (16). When Rueben, Jacob’s eldest son, slept with his father’s concubine Zilpah, it was an attempt to take control of the nation from Jacob/Israel sort of like what happened when David’s Absolom slept with his father’s concubines. Jacob remembered the incident but didn’t do anything about it until a future time (22, 2 Samuel 16:21-22). While in Bethlehem, Isaac passed away and was buried by his sons (28-29).
Job 32 – Elihu Rebukes Job. The first two men were unable to put up an argument that would stop Job by refuting Job’s argument. Elihu believed that Job was justifying himself rather than G_d by giving a sound reason for the tragedies that befell him. In his youth, the man was waiting for someone to speak on behalf of the All-Mighty. When Job could not offer any evidence or reasoning behind the events that befell him, The only thing that could be derived is that there must have been ulterior reasoning behind it but that was overlooked because of the conventional wisdom “something bad happened to you, so you must have done something wrong” (). Elihu was a proud young man of the family of Ram (2, 18-22).
Psalms 17 – Prayer of Protection. In this prayer, David outlines what is going on that is causing trouble for him. Saul was persecuting David because the Spirit of the Lord was no longer with him and in its place, was the spirit of anger, malice, greed, and jealousy; the Spirit of the Lord was on David which was the root of the problems. These attacks by Saul should have incited anger but David turned it to prayer and by it defeated the enemy’s plans (2-5, 1 Samuel 17:12-14). When our first recourse is to turn to the Lord G_d instead of “retribution”, the enemy loses power over our lives, and our perception changes (12-15).
Proverbs 3 – The Rewards of Wisdom. Before the parent can expound on the benefits of wisdom, he/she must first possess wisdom and have already seen the fruit from it because he/she has employed in their life at one point in time or another. Wisdom is not tantamount to “knowledge” nor having read what the Word says (1-3). Trusting in the Lord completely means, often turning away from what see or what is in front of us (5-6). Not “being wise in our eyes” means not trusting what we think instead, reading His word and believing what we read more than what we see or hear (7-10). There are times when we will be corrected and we must learn from those times like David did (11-12).
Ezekiel 35 – Prophecy against Mount Seir. Mount Seir was the homeland of Esau and his descendants the Edomites (Deuteronomy 2:3-5). In the time of Jacob and Esau, the hatchet of anger and jealousy was buried (Genesis 33:3-4). In the time of Saul, the Edomites (1 Samuel 14:47). In the time of David, the Edomites were defeated in the Battle of the Salt Sea, and garrisons were put in Edom because Seir would be a vassal to Israel until the time Jehoram (2 Chronicles 21:8). When the Temple was being built in the time of Solomon, the Edomites were forced into slave labor just as the Egyptians did to the Israelites (Exodus 1:8-13). So, the Edomites were justifiably angry with the Jews because of the abuse they received at the hands of the Jewish Kings. When the Edomites rejoiced at the fall of Jerusalem, it displeased G_d and would receive the same punishment that Israel/Judah received (4-10, 13-15).