Bible Reading 1/4/2022

Reading #1 – Deuteronomy 13:12-18

Reading #2 – Psalms 27:1-6

Reading #3 – Lamentations 3:34-45

Reading #4 – John 10

Reading #5 – 1 Samuel 2:22-26

 

Notes

Deuteronomy 13:12-18 – Troublemakers. One of the many things the nation had to keep an eye out for was “troublemakers”. Just because the nation invaded the land, did not mean that the G-ds of the other nations had been eliminated. Troublemakers create what is called, “an undercurrent” that would dwell below the surface like a river flowing below the ocean which would go unnoticed. The time to stop these “troublemakers” is while it is in its infancy just as you would remove weeds when they are small. When the people became aware of what was going on, the people were to do a thorough search which entailed getting to the truth of the matter. If the matter is proven true, then the whole city, animals, idols, precious metals included were to be put to the sword and everything burned to a heap. The reason the people were not told to “take the gold and silver into the house of the Lord” was that the raid would appear to be “about the wealth” (12-16). The Lord is pleased with “complete obedience” even if His commands appear to be “foolishness” (17-18).

Psalms 27:1-6 – The Lord is My Light and My Salvation. When we are completely obedient to the Lord’s laws, precepts, and instructions, we will have nothing to fear. In the same way, when we obey those over us in the Lord, on our job, community, and home, we will have nothing to fear when plans go awry (1-2, Proverbs 24:21-22). Unfortunately, obeying the Lord doesn’t mean that trouble will not find its way to our doorstep. What we do in those times will either build up our confidence in the Lord or be a weak link that will assail us repeatedly (3-6).

Lamentations 3:34-45 – Let Us Test Our Ways. When Israel was exiled from its homeland in 586, it would have been quite easy for the world to rally against Babylon or claim “the Lord is a bully with a magnifying glass” (34-36). Yet, consider the commands the Lord gave to the nation on the eve crossing the river how He insisted that the nation be obedient to the Lord’s commands. The nations being routed by Israel had misused the Lord’s land. Unfortunately, the nation became as vile as the vile nations they destroyed. For centuries, the prophets and seers had tried to warn the nation, but they would not listen (37-39). When trouble finds its way to our doorstep, we owe it to ourselves and our family to carefully look at the paths we have walked and where have offended the Lord, we need to repent. Remember, not everyone in the nation capitulated with the king nor had they sinned. The problem was, the actions of the few impacted the many so, so by the fire of a few the many will catch the fire (40-45, Romans 5:12).

John 10:1-21 – I Am the Good Shepherd. In Jerusalem that day, not everyone present was there to hear what Jesus had to say; many came for the miracles and to have their needs met; Others, came to catch Jesus in his words and to cause problems for those who followed him. Those who came listened to what Jesus had to say and were obedient were fodder for the religious leaders who did not listen to Jesus (1-5); this, unfortunately, created a crisis of sorts. If you chose to listen to Jesus and called him the “Messiah”, you would be an enemy of the state, the community, and your family (Matthew 10:34-36). Using the illustration of the Shepherd and the sheep, although a major part of the culture, eluded the people (6).

1 Samuel 2:22-26 – Eli Rebukes His Sons. Hophni and Phineas, the sons of Eli, misused the authority granted by their father. The boys were now in their early 30’s, which was a poor time to be correcting them as they would not listen. We are not told how the boys were raised or what Eli was like in his early years, but we can tell by the events that played out that Eli didn’t raise them in the admonition of the Lord (Ephesians 6:4). The time for instruction of our children is while they are young and impressionable. Unfortunately, the sword had been drawn and it would not be put away until everything in its path was swept away (22-25). Samuel would be the next priest of the community and he was from a different family line than Eli and his sons (26).

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