Bible Readings for 2/17/2022

Deuteronomy 28:52-68

Psalms 46

Proverbs 13:1-13

Acts 13:13-52

1 Samuel 19:11-24

Mike’s Notes

Deuteronomy 28:52-68 – Sin’s Crushing Blow. To go from having high fortresses with the world catering to you to mere urchins scrounging for what little food is left is a frightening prospect (52-57). Adhering to the Law is invaluable. If we do not fear the Lord G-d, we will follow the G-ds of this world to our untimely end (58-63). Once sin has started to dismantle a nation, it will continue until there isn’t a single brick stacked upon another (64-68).

Psalms 46 – G-d is Our Fortress. The Devil uses the smoke screens of fear, trouble, desperation, and illness to invoke fear in our hearts. If we will refuse to let these things alter the faith we have in the Lord the Devil will lose at the end (1-3). Our G-d made the world and everything in it because of that, He knows what it will take to heal the land and everything in it. The problem is, we have our timing and G-d has His. When we rely on our timing, sort of like Saul and the unauthorized sacrifice, whatever G-d has in mind for us is irrevocably altered (1 Samuel 13:8-12). If we hold on to the word that was given us whether, the promise to David or the word of Daniel, G-d will bring things to their ultimate conclusion (4-7, 1 Samuel 16:12-13, Daniel 9:1-3). When we grab hold of the horns of the altar through the storms and trials, we will have reason to rejoice when the storms clear and the trials end and our joy will not be taken away (8-11, John 16:21-22).

Proverbs 13:1-13 – Wisdom’s Academy. Listening to wisdom is often met with resistance because it doesn’t jive with our modicum of life. The thing about wisdom is that much of her understanding comes from a heap of bad decisions that brought its subject to the brink of ruin (1). The mouth is an abyss that needs to be guarded against what goes in and what comes out (2-3). Attending Wisdom’s Academy requires the student to research its information and apply the truth to their life before telling others how to live (4-6). Wealth is seen as a fortress in that it protects its owner from all harm the problem is, “it’s all an illusion”. People will cater to the rich and influential to get some of the funds or to ride their coattails. Where the wheels come off the axel is when the rich and/or influential get themselves into trouble (7-8). Righteousness’ reward is seen in the outcome that defies the storms the person faced (9-10). Life’s reward is watching her students grow strong in faith, proper use of funds, and applying the skills she provides (11-13).

Acts 13:13-52 – The Age-Old Story. At Pamphylia, which is located in southern Anatolia, John Mark went back to Jerusalem for an unknown reason. Paul and Barnabus went to the Synagog on the Sabbath in Pisidia (13-14). After reading from the Law and the Prophets the Synagog leader asked Paul if he had a word of encouragement (15). So Paul tells Israel’s story which would have elicited “pride and patriotism” (16-25). The problem arose when Paul tied in Christ’s connection to the story (26-39). To further complicate the problem, Paul cites one of the revered prophets Habakuk (40-41, Habakuk 1:5). Among the Jews as well as Islam, Jesus is not accepted as the Messiah by portions of the nation. So when the entire community showed up for the next week’s service, the Jews became jealous just as Saul had been jealous of David (42-45). After giving the word to the Jews first, Paul turned to the gentiles which elicited praise and spontaneous worship (46-52).

1 Samuel 19:11-24 – Saul’s Quest to Kill David. Envy and Jealousy had gnawed at Saul’s heart to the point in which everything David did was seen as an attempt to steal the throne. Michal, David’s wife and daughter of King Saul helped David escape Saul’s clutches; to give him enough time, she put the head of a G-d in David’s bed (11-12). When he was told that David was ill, Saul said “Bring him to me in his bed so that I may put him to death” (13-17). Having escaped Saul, David met up with Samuel in Ramah. This would seem to be a strategic error but the Lord G-d had a plan for Saul. The men Saul sent to kill David were caught up in the spirit of prophecy alongside the company of prophets. Having had two failed attempts, Saul went on the third trip and he too was caught up in the spirit. The events at Ramah should have forever cemented in Saul’s thick head that David was the Lord’s anointed and was not to be touched sort of like what happened with Elijah (18-24, 2 Kings 1:9-15).

Bible Readings for 2/16/2022

Deuteronomy 28:36-51

Psalms 45

Proverbs 12:15-28

Acts 13:1-12

1 Samuel 19:1-10

Mike’s Notes

Deuteronomy 28:36-51 – Curses For Disobedience. Disobedience to the Lord’s commands would cause the people to lose the land. If the current occupants could be removed although they had been in the land for centuries, Israel could be removed no matter how long or how well entrenched they might become (36-40). The problem, though, would not be with the parents that were going into the land it would be with their children (41-42). The nations that would become Israel’s servants could and would become the master and Israel the slave (43-44). The curses would not be an immediate “about-face” it would take time and conditions to occur (45-51).

Psalms 45 – Your Throne, O G-d, Is Forever. This Psalm was written by the sons of Korach and is a wedding Psalm for the King who is marrying a foreign woman (1-3, ). The King has the responsibility and accountability for the kingdom. How manages it is how he will be judged (4-5). If we want our kingdom to be seen as being “righteous”, we must learn from the King of Righteousness what pleases Him (6-9). To the foreign-born bride, she is encouraged to forget her people, their beliefs, and traditions and truly marry the King (10-12). The Queen would receive all that she would need to live in the land. Her sons would become princes in the land and one would become the next King of Israel (13-17).

Proverbs 12:15-28 – The Two Outlooks. As I said before, the fruit will always tell the quality and type of tree. You will not go to an apple tree to harvest pears nor a pear tree to harvest carrots; when it comes to the fool and the wise, it is the same thing. A fool will not listen to advice unless it is a word that confirms their beliefs (15-16). For truth to be spoken, there first must be the understanding that the “truth” is not a matter of “like or dislike”. In the same way, relationships are harmed more by lies than by the telling of the truth (17-18). One can tell a lie and make it believable until the facts are presented and the lie falls apart (19-22). There are times when we will withhold information either because we are not sure it is correct or it is not the right time (23). It is an oddity about the word of G-d in that it speaks of “end results” and on rare occasions, a timeline is given (24-25). The righteous person will carefully consider what comes out of his/her mouth and the pathway he/she is taking where the fool has no such concerns (26-28).

Acts 13:1-12 – Barnabus and Saul Sent Off. While at Antioch, the Holy Spirit spoke through the prophets to have Saul and Barnabus for a special assignment. After prayer and fasting over the decision, the two men were prayed over and then sent off for what would be Saul’s first missionary trip (1-3). Sailing from Seleucia, which is located in Turkey, they sailed to Cyprus which is located in Greece in what was the “Ottoman Empire”. At Salamis, which is located in Cyprus and is a principal city (4-5). At Paphos, they encountered a false prophet called Bar-Jesus who had a strong influence on the proconsul. The proconsul, Sergius Paulus invited the missionary team to give a word of encouragement (6-7). Elymas used the opportunity to heckle the missionary team so that his target, Sergius, would not come to faith. Saul, now called Paul, put Elymas on notice that he was under the power of the Devil and that for a time he would be blind just as Paul had been before Ananias touched him (8-12).

1 Samuel 19:1-10 – Saul Tries to Kill David. Saul had given the command that David was to be put to death. Under normal circumstances, this command would have been carried out if not for the relationship David had with Jonathan (1). Jonathan interceded for David and convinced his father to relent by reminding his father of the good that David had done so Saul did (2-7). David and Saul’s relationship had been restored until war broke out and David successfully routed the Philistines once again. The spirit of “Jealousy” overcame Saul’s good senses and because of it, Saul tried to pin David to the wall (8-10).

Bible Readings for 2/15/2022

Deuteronomy 28:15-35

Psalms 44:17-26

Proverbs 12:1-14

Acts 12

1 Samuel 18:17-30

Mike’s Notes

Deuteronomy 28:15-35 – Curses for Disobedience. Disobedience is the act of listening to the law but choosing not to obey it. When we choose to not listen to the Lord’s instructions, whatever He was trying to save us from will become the end result (15-19). Once we start down the road to disobedience, we will face nothing but trouble even if we plant honestly or give graciously. Eventually, the evil plans we have laid will be the bed we will be made to sleep in (20-24). The Lord’s method of destroying us is by the hands of old enemies (25-31). The biggest problem by far is that our children pay the price for our actions either by being excluded or looked on disfavorably (32). When everything we have worked so hard to accumulate is given away like one would clothing to the Good Will, you will know that there is something wrong (33-35).

Psalms 44:17-26 – Come to Our Help. When a disaster occurs in our life, we owe it to ourselves to search our souls to see if we caused the problem (17-19). There are people in this world that want nothing to do with peace and will do everything within their power to crush peace (Mike Krier). These people go out under the cover of darkness to plant seeds that will overtake peace (20-22). It is in these times that we need to go to our knees and seek the face of G-d (23-26).

Proverbs 12:1-14 – Planting Season. Israel is an agrarian society (Agrarian). Planting and nourishing good seeds of faith and integrity will guarantee good produce in time (1-3). How we treat others will either cause us to be seen as a “cad” or a “prince” (4-5). Having weeds crop up in our garden is not an indictment on us unless we allow the weeds to continue to grow and mature (6-7). While we cannot stop weeds of bitterness, hatred, envy, etc .. we do have the power to overcome it by positive action (8-11). The question we need to ask ourselves is, “what plants do we want coming from our lives?” (12-14).

Acts 12 – James and Peter. James was killed by King Herod. Herod Agrippa was a vassal king to Emporer Caligula. In his zeal for Orthodox Jewish teachings, Herod tried to snuff out Christianity (Britannica). Peter was imprisoned by Herod to have him publically executed (1-5). In response to Herod, the church prayed corporately and personally for Peter’s release. An angel was sent to free Peter (6-11). After being freed, Peter went to the home church to share the good news and then left the city (12-17). The next morning the soldiers were investigated and then put to death (18-19). Herod was killed by an angel while he was in Caesarea (20-23). The church, though, continued to survive and grow (24-25).

1 Samuel 18:17-30 – David Marries Michal. Being offered the first-born daughter of the King to be your wife was the highest honor that could be paid. The problem with Saul’s offer was that he had ulterior motives and that was, to have David killed by the hands of the Philistines (17-18). David was a humble man who never sought glory for himself nor did he laud his position over his family. So, he turned down the offer however much it would have benefited him (19). The form of the word “love” that Michal had for David was, “ahab” or “human love” which could be applied as a family or sexual love. I believe that the intended meaning was that Michal lusted after David in the same way that Potipher’s wife loved Joseph (20, Genesis 39:7-8, Blue Letter Bible). The King’s intention was always to have David killed without having to get his hands dirty in the same way David had Uriah killed (20-21). David did not trust Saul so Saul had people who David trusted urge him to marry Michal (22-25). David returned to Saul having killed and skinned the requisite number of Philistines and by it thwarted Saul’s plans (26-30).

 

Bible Readings for 2/13/2022

Deuteronomy 28:1-14

Psalms 44:1-16

Proverbs 11:12-31

Acts 11

1 Samuel 18:1-16

Mike’s Notes

Deuteronomy 28:1-14 – Blessings of Obedience. Obedience to the law is more than a spiritual decision, it will bless your home and your personal life. When the community adheres to the law, peace ensues and the community prospers (1-6). Our enemies or those who oppose us will start fights with us or find a reason to destroy us. In our finances, we will lend to people but borrow from none. We may not live an opulent lifestyle but our needs will be met when we are careful to ask for them (7-14).

Psalms 44:1-16 – Come to Our Help. When we are in trouble, we need to ask for the Lord’s help. What the Lord has done in ages past is passed down through stories (1-3). If the Lord is not “your Lord” when life is at its best, how can we expect His blessings in times of trouble (4-8)? The thing is, not all times of rejection and trouble come as a result of disobedience, some come to test our courage and conviction (9-16, Case of Job).

Proverbs 11:12-31 – Troubling the House. Whatever we do in life will either bring credit or disaster to our homes. Problems in a community or home usually start small and then gather steam (12-15). Causing problems for others will eventually touch our lives as well (16-18). Righteousness will lead away from traps if we are listening to the voice of the Lord (19-23). Being generous and loving has its own fruit and those who do so will be blessed in their time of need (24-26). While it is easy to find the bad in people, it takes greater effort but better fruit when we look for the best in people. In the same way, when we bless others we also bring blessings to our home (27-31).

Acts 11 – The Fire is Kindled. Peter had eaten and talked with the gentiles and, because of the Jewish law, this was a sinful action. Peter explained his actions beginning with the vision that he had received. Peter’s report soothed the concerns of the elders and opened the door for reaching the gentile nations that would be fulfilled by Paul (1-18). Antioch which is located in ancient Syria became ground 0 for the Christian church. Evangelists who left Cyprus and Cyrene due to persecution came to Antioch to share the good news with the Hellenists (19-20). Once the fire was started, it spread to the people which gave birth to the Christian church. Upon hearing of the growth in Antioch, Under the tutelage of Saul and Barnabus the infant church prospered (21-26). Agabus the prophet prophesied of a great famine. Having this knowledge in mind, a plan was put in place to provide for the church during the famine (27-30).

1 Samuel 18:1-16 – Setting the Stage. The anointing that was on Saul was now on David. The void in Saul’s heart was then filled with envy and jealousy. Giving David his cloak and sword was the highest honor that Jonathan could give David according to Eastern culture (1-4, Jamieson and Fausset). Because the Lord was with David, where ever he went and whatever he did, he succeeded. David became the nation’s champion (5). Because of these events, Saul became jealous of David and didn’t help that David was credited with more kills than he was (6-9). The harmful spirit knew that David was the Lord’s anointed so it compelled Saul to kill David. After being unsuccessful, Saul did the next best thing he got David out of his sight with hopes that David would die in battle (12-16).

Bible Reading 2/11/2022

Deuteronomy 27:9-26

Psalms 43

Proverbs 11:1-11

Acts 10:34-48

1 Samuel 17:41-58

Mike’s Notes

Deuteronomy 27:9-26 – Mount Ebal. One member from each of the 12 tribes would be represented to utter the blessings and curses; Representatives of Reuben, Gad, Asher, Zebulun, Dan, and Naphtali would utter the curses from Mount Ebal. Simeon, Levi, Judah, Issachar, Joseph, and Benjamin would stand on Mount Gerazim to utter the blessings. The remainder of the nation would stand in the middle and say amen to the blessings and curses (9-14). When we are disobedient in any area of our life, we cause problems for ourselves, our homes, and our communities. The word “curse” means to invoke a solemn oath for a supernatural power or inflict harm. The curses that are listed are from Israel’s past failures or, “real-world events” (15-26).

Psalms 43 – Send Out Your Light and Truth. Taking a stand in life is very difficult because it could very well mean that we will stand alone. Walking in step with the world does not guarantee the same results for everyone it’s part of the “unfairness of life”. Walking in obedience to the Lord may not get you uber-rich but, you will have peace in your life even when troubles invade your life (1-2). For this reason, we need the Word of G-d operating in and through our lives so that no matter what happens, we will know the truth and be set free by it (3-4). When not “if” trouble comes, we need to place our trust in Him and not lose faith (5).

Proverbs 11:1-11 – The Righteous and the Wicked. When it comes to life, there are two paths both of which go somewhere. Unless we have walked a certain pathway before, we do not know what we will encounter along the way or where it leads to. In the same way, when it comes to the “wicked” or the “righteous” pathways, we have no idea what lies ahead. G-d’s Word promises that He will bless obedience but what we forget is that the pathways have pitfalls. One of the pitfalls comes in how the world views “success”. Consider how the drug dealer or porn distributor enjoys an opulent lifestyle. The problem is that the Devil has an end game that comes when mankind least expects it. Remember, having the peace of Christ Jesus dwelling in us is worth every penny and every hardship that may come our way (1-11).

Acts 10:34-48 – Peter Shares the Good News. Jews meeting with gentiles was forbidden by Jewish law. Yet, the Lord sends Peter to tell the group of gentiles the good news. Standing in the presence of the gentiles sharing the good news were an eye-opener and a word of confirmation to Peter (34-35). Part of the reasoning for trusting what Peter had to say was that they had heard rumors and snippets of what Jesus had done in his lifetime (36-38). Peter and many others had been witnesses to everything that happened from day 1 to the death on the cross (39-43). Because of Peter’s obedience to the Lord, salvation came upon the group of gentiles. The power that overcame Peter and the disciples also came upon the rag-tag group of gentiles (44-48).

1 Samuel 17:41-58 – David and Goliath. Goliath of Gath was a formidable man who many feared because of his height and when he put on his armor, no one challenged him. David, on the other hand, was not imposing and many including his brothers thought him to be nothing more than a “sheepherder”. So when Goliath caught sight of David, he thought “that’ll be too easy” (41-44). David had faith in the Lord G-d that was unmatched (45-47). The Philistine armies had counted on their champion so when the stone from David’s sling knocked the champion out, it created havoc in the camp. It was then that the armies of Israel found their courage and attacked the enemy in force (48-52). Taking the giant’s sword, David cut the Philistine’s head off and returned to the Israelite’s camp with the sword in tow (53-54). From this point on, David became part of Saul’s army (55-58).

Bible Readings 2/11/2022

Deuteronomy 27:1-8

Psalms 42

Proverbs 10:22-32

Acts 10:1-33

1 Samuel 17:31-40

Mike’s Notes

Deuteronomy 27:1-8 – The Altar on Mount Ebal. Moses summoned the people to the altar and gave the command “Obey the whole law” (1). When the people entered the land, they were to gather the stones and plaster to erect a  Peace memorial (2-4). The people were to build the altar by hand and were not to use any iron tools. The reasoning behind the stipulation was that iron tools were used as weapons, this was a “peace memorial” (5-7,  ). Once the altar was completed, the people were to write the entire law on the stones in clear distinct words (8). The reasoning behind this was that once Moses and the elders were gone, the people would forget what was said or misinterpret the words.

Psalms 42 – Why Are You Cast Down, O My Soul? According to an online article, a deer pants for water as a way of cooling itself off while it is in search of water (1, ). In the same way, our soul longs for the Living G-d. The problem is, we don’t recognize the need because the symptoms do not shout out, “I need ____” (2-3). When we are thirsty, our body mistakes the notion to mean “I am hungry” and so we eat (Mixed Signals). When we have stayed away from the throne room for lengthy periods, our soul begins to deteriorate, and like the sentence above, our soul becomes hungry for the Word of G-d and reacts in ways that decry what our soul longs for by being even more sinful (4). We have a choice, though, we can stay in a deteriorated status or, we can go back to the place where we have been fed life-giving food and the water of the Holy Spirit to quench our thirst (5-8). The thing is, G-d has never forgotten about us, and nor has he given up on us (9). The enemy uses this inherent weakness in mankind to taunt G-d’s servants by telling them, “you can’t go back to G-d, He’s all through with you”. It is in these times we need to remind the enemy who is the defeated foe and who is the victor (10-11).

Proverbs 10:22-32 – The Righteous and the Wicked. Living a righteous life is not limited to the Jewish nation nor the Christian, it is universal. The lifestyle live is a personal choice. Following the course of the world is an easy choice, “just follow the trampled on pathway” (22-23, Matthew 7:13-14). David could have cowered alongside the other soldiers but, he took a stand at the chagrin of his brothers (24-28, 1 Samuel 17:28). The thing is, there is a difference between “talking righteous” and “living according to our conviction” (29-32).

Acts 10:1-33 – Peter and Cornelius. Cornelius was a Roman Centurian who provided for the poor, feared the Lord, and prayed daily for his nation and for the Jews. This, of course, probably went over like a lead balloon by the Roman leadership (1-2). While he was in prayer about the ninth hour or “evening prayer”, the Lord told him to call for Peter who staying in Joppa. Cornelius sent two of his servants to request Peter’s presence (3-8). Remember this, anytime the Lord calls you to do something He will also provide the needs. In Peter’s case, the Lord gave him a vision of the animals, told him to rise and eat them. Peter was a true Jew in that he did not eat unclean animals. The Lord told Peter, “don’t call unclean what the Lord calls clean” (9-16). This, of course, confused Peter because of what the law said. When the men arrived, the Lord let Peter in on the particulars (17-23). The next day, Peter went with the Centurian’s servants out of obedience to the Lord (24-29).

1 Samuel 17:31-40 – David Prepares to Fight Goliath. Word had gotten to Saul that a “sucker” I mean, “warrior” had agreed to take on Goliath (31). So, the King requested David’s presence. Remember, David was just a boy barely over the age of 17. When Saul got sight of David he had to think, “either this kid is a braggart or a fool” (32-33). David relayed his credentials and the King had no further objections (34-37). Because the only armor David had was a slingshot, Saul had him put on the King’s armor which was several sizes too big for him. The armor would have been a liability because it would have slowed him down and would be unable to lift the sword. So, David took it off and with a sling, five stones, and an unshakable faith in the Lord (38-40).

 

Bible Readings for 2/7/2022

Deuteronomy 26

Psalms 41

Proverbs 10:10-21

Acts 9:32-43

1 Samuel 17:12-30

Mike’s Notes

Deuteronomy 26 – Offerings of Firstfruits and Tithes. The purpose of the “first fruits and tithes” was to show evidence of the Lord’s provisions. SO when they got into the land, the people were to plant their crops and harvest them. The feast of “Firstfruits” was called “Pentecost” or the 50th day after last year’s harvest. The people were to take the fruit, put it in a basket and take it to the “One place of worship” (1-4). When they got to the “One place” they were to recite, “A wandering Aramean was my father …” (5-11). What was left after paying their tithes would go to the Levites, the widow, orphan, and sojourner (12-13). After providing for the above, the person would recite what I call the “honesty pledge” Ananias and Sapphira forgot about (14-15). The reason the Lord was so specific in His commands was that when He provided for us, He didn’t without anything good from us, and nothing that he gave came with “strings attached”. For us to be “His treasured possession”, we must act like it and show it by being the “difference” (16-18).

Psalms 41 – O Lord, Be Gracious to Me. When we are ill or in dire straights, we will go to the place where our needs will be met. In Jesus’ time, people thronged from all over the area to have the healer touch their wounds. Hezekiah had become ill to the point where he was near death. Instead of turning to the doctors, he turned his eyes to the Lord and was healed by a poultice (1-4, 2 Kings 20). Throughout his life, Hezekiah had served the Lord faithfully which had to put him at odds with the nations that fought against Israel. So, when he was near death the nations were salivating over a new king who would capitulate with them (5-9). The Lord shows his delight in us by “long life (10-13, Psalms 91:14-16).

Proverbs 10:10-21 – Proverbs of Solomon. Unfortunately, our greatest source of trouble is usually our mouths and the second greatest is our eyes (10-11). The enemy of our soul knows that if he can get us to “hate someone”, the seeds of strife will be planted and all they will need is a little bit of water and fertilizer to get hate to grow (12). Wisdom and love are also seeds that when planted require watering and fertilizer (13). The wise at heart carefully weigh out what seeds they allow planted in the garden of their heart (14). Wealth nor lack of it determine the quality of one’s life but how that wealth or lack of it is applied (15-21).

Acts 9:32-43 – The Healing of Aeneas. Aeneas had been paralyzed for eight years before his encounter with Peter (32-33). When Peter spoke to this man, he didn’t ask “how’d you get like that” or, “do you repent of your sins”, he said, “Jesus heals you get up and make your bed” (34-35). This required the man to make an act of faith. This single act sparked a fire in the community. Dorcus had been the light and spirit of the community and her death was felt by the entire community (36-39). Peter was called upon to come and revive Dorcas. When he arrived, he did not make a big show of things, he simply put everyone out of the room. The first thing Peter did was kneel down to pray so that the credit for the healing and restoration would be the Lord, not Peter unlike what happened at the rock of Meribah (40-43, Numbers 20:2-13).

1 Samuel 17:12-30 – Goliath’s Challenge. As I said yesterday, Goliath had no fear of any man because he was an imposing giant of a man. When lining up for battle, all Goliath had to do was walk to the line, lift his spear, and wear his battle armament (12-23). The men in Saul’s army took their cue from him on how to react to Goliath’s presence. Unlike the other men in Saul’s army, David didn’t run when he saw Goliath, he was ready to take him on in battle (24-27). David’s brother Eliab was less than amused when he heard what David was saying. Eliab had thought David was spouting off and would run the first time Goliath shook his spear. The difference between David and Saul is the same difference between walking by faith and by sight (28-30).

 

Bible Readings for 2/6/2022

Deuteronomy 25

Psalms 40:9-17

Proverbs 10:1-9

Acts 9:26-31

1 Samuel 17:1-11

Mike’s Notes

Deuteronomy 25 – Miscellaneous Laws. The purpose of punishment is two-fold, it lets the criminal know that his/her works will be judged and, it lets the community know that evil will not be tolerated. When punishing an individual with a whipping, the maximum number of lashes is no more than 40 (1-4). Levirate marriage ensures that a deceased man’s lineage would not die out; according to commentary, this law has been rescinded. The practice of “taking off your sandal” is a legal transaction. The practice of spitting in the face is a sign of contempt (5-10, Matthew Henry’s Commentary, Jstor stable 3266188). The keyword for the community was “honesty”. Remember this “the Lord’s cherished people”. If they were dishonest, what does it say about the Lord (13-16)? As stated earlier, the nation was in no condition to take on Amalek but when able, they were to deal with the nation for its inhospitable acts (17-19).

Psalms 40:9-17 – My Actions in view of the Lord’s Mercies. Because I call myself “a child of G-d”, I must act accordingly. When I do that which is evil like the Priests at the tail end of the 1st Temple period, I am in fact misusing His name. When I speak and act with mercy to those I encounter, it is His love that is displayed. From this, people come to the Lord despite the mess that holds them bound (9-10). When we are merciful to others, we can enter His throneroom knowing that we will extend the scepter toward us (11-12). When we sin, the world will use us as the butt end of their jokes; the Lord, however, will accept us and the blood covers our iniquities (13-15, 1 John 1:9). May my life be an example of your forgiveness and may I always offer the same grace and mercy to those who offend me (16-17).

Proverbs 10:1-9 – The Proverbs of Solomon. Living a sinful life although expedient and bringing with it a fair share of thrills and fun, has a nasty aftertaste to it. The reason it is expedient is that living in sin requires no thought, “just do what the Romans do”. Living a righteous life requires constant watch over our actions, thoughts, and words. The difference between the two worlds is, “the outcome”. If we live a slothful life, in the cold of winter we will have no food to eat (1-5). Our children and the people we represent pay the ultimate price for our actions like the difference between Jesus and Judas (6-8). Maintaining our integrity is important if we want peace in our life (9).

Acts 9:26-31 – Saul in Jerusalem. Saul’s aversion to the disciples was well established in Jerusalem. Before leaving for Damascus he was out to kill anyone who worshipped the Lord. The new Saul was on fire for the Lord. So, you can imagine the fear the people had towards him. Barnabus “son of encouragement” brought Saul before the Apostles and told them what had happened in Damascus (26-27). In Jerusalem at that time, there was a mixture of beliefs sort of like the church systems in America. Saul debated with the Hellenists. Remember by this time the Jews were caught in an “identity crisis”. The Hellenists believed they were the “true Jews” as did the Hebraic Jews. In the same way, when we come to the Lord, there are competing churches that say “Jesus lives here” (28-30, ). Because of Saul and the disciples, there was peace in Jerusalem, Galilee, and Samaria (31).

1 Samuel 17:1-11 – David and Goliath. Goliath was a giant of a man and he frightened Saul and the Israeli armies. The victory would be decided by the outcome of whoever defeated or was defeated by Goliath. The giant was confident in his size and the armor he wore and he thought no one could beat him so he chided them continually. To Saul and the armies, Goliath was taller than their faith and outweighed their obedience. That is why no one took Goliath up on his challenge. Saul was no pipsqueak, he was taller than the people he served. Where there is no faith, there will be fear and it will circumvent everything we have been taught (1-11).

Bible Readings for 2/5/2022

Deuteronomy 24:14-22

Psalms 40:6-8

Proverbs 9:13-18

Acts 9:13-25

1 Samuel 16:14-22

Mike’s Notes

Deuteronomy 24:14-22 – Miscellaneous Laws. Part of Torah law was that the people were to provide for the poor, the widow, and those traveling through Israel. When you hired people, you were required to pay them as agreed (14-15, Matthew 20:1-16). The reason for stipulating this was that obedience to this law shows that the people served the Lord. Serving the Lord means that we need to see life 180 degrees out of sync with the world’s ways. Perverting justice to fill a short-term need causes long-term issues. When Saul withheld from putting Agag to death and kept the best animals for sacrifice, it was a perversion of justice and it cost him his kingdom (16-18, 1 Samuel 15:9). Leaving the small amounts of grain and olives was a means for the poor, the widow, and the sojourner to eat. The term for this is “hospitable”. The reason they were instructed to be hospitable was that they never knew who it was that had visited them. Consider the case of Ruth who would become David’s Great Grandmother (19-22, 1 Chronicle 2:11-12).

Psalms 40:6-8 – Your Servant. Folly derives her pleasure by making people jump through hoops for no reason. The sacrifice that pleases the Lord is “obedience and faithfulness”. In His Word or scroll, you will not find any crazy ideas or notions that will bring you close to the Lord. The only thing the Lord asks of us is to obey His laws and commands. The Devil is conniving and will tell us things like, “if you want to please the Lord do this ____ thing and you will be close to the Lord (6-8, Genesis 3:5).

Proverbs 9:13-18 – The Way of Folly. Folly is Wisdom’s counterpart or the 180-degree polar opposite. Folly does not care about her house or the people who enter it. Because she markets her body, she has an allure about her that gets her prey dreaming about it. Once on the proverbial hook, Folly squashes the prey’s dreams and ends its life in futility. Folly, like her mentor, is convincing and can make the impossible seem possible and the possible seem impossible (13-19).

Acts 9:13-25 – Ananias meets with Saul. After being brought into Damascus, the Lord called Ananias to go speak with Saul. Ananias responded to the Lord “You don’t know what this man has been doing! He is evil and is destroying your servants in Jerusalem” (13-16, Mike’s Version). Undeterred, the Lord insisted so Ananias went to meet with Saul. After laying hands on Saul and announcing the good news, Saul rose from prayer and ate some food (17-19). Saul went to the Synagog’s in Damascus preaching the good news of Jesus Christ. This 180 degree turn around confused the saints because the man that was out to get them became the one to encourage them in the service of the Lord (20-22). The Jews who were against the servants of the “way” had seen what this Pharisee was doing and tried to kill him. So, the disciples lowered Saul down the wall of the city in a basket (23-25).

1 Samuel 16:14-22 – David in Saul’s Service. After the Spirit of the Lord left Saul, a tormenting spirit entered his heart (14). This spirit would compel Saul to become angry, bitter, jealous, and vengeful. The servants suggested that Saul get the young man David to play the music that would soothe his soul (15-18). So, using his privilege as the King, he sent a message to David’s father requesting food, wine, and your son David (19-20). So David became the King’s armor-bearer. When Saul went into tirades, became bitter, angry, and/or vengeful, David would play his harp (21-22). Music did not ward off the spirit, it calmed the man’s heart.

Bible Readings for 2/4/2022

Deuteronomy 24:1-13

Psalms 40:1-5

Proverbs 9:1-12 –

Acts 9:1-12

1 Samuel 16:1-13

Mike’s Notes

Deuteronomy 24:1-13 – Laws Concerning Divorce. Jesus when questioned about the law concerning divorce reminded the experts in the law that from the beginning divorce was not permissible unless it is for marital unfaithfulness (Matthew 19:4-6, ). The provision of the law was that once divorced, the man could not remarry the woman he divorced (1-4). When a man marries a new wife, he is given a one-year exemption from military and public service. The reason for this is that the time provides the man to get his wife pregnant to raise offspring to the family name (5, ). The “Upper millstone” was for grinding grain without it, the man/woman would not be able to provide for themselves and their family (6, ). Theft of any kind was strictly prohibited because it would cause problems in the community (7). Leprosy is a contagious skin rash and was synonymous with ritual impurity, and punishment for sins. The reason the people were warned to take harsh steps when it came to leprosy was that left unchecked, would infect the entire community (8-9, 2 Kings 5, ). Lending anything to anyone required the lender to wait for their pledge. The “pledge” must be returned in the evening like the example of a sweater or the upper millstone. Although, I tend to follow Polonius’ advice to his young son (10-13, ).

Psalms 40:1-5 – My Help and My Deliverer. Modern-day financial systems provide ample venues for borrowing money to meet short-term crisis’. Add to the mix, when we are financially strapped, we work harder to get the income to pay the bills or we apply for Bankruptcy. While it is certainly expedient to use either of the three, consider what it does to the family unit, the community at large, and our hearts. The purpose of living for the Lord is to build ourselves, our family, and our community up so that we have peace (1-3). Trusting in the Lord for our daily needs is easier said than done. The reason for that is, the Devil and our world make our situation seem bigger than the G-d we serve which compels us to go in search of another G-d (4-5).

Proverbs 9:1-12 – Wisdom’s Pathway. Wisdom’s house is built upon the Word of G-d and the rooms are adorned with memories of those who have listened to her. These memories were left to encourage others in their journey. The seven pillars indicate strength and stability, “something people can rely on” (1-2). All people are invited to her home, several people RSVP to her invitation but, only a few actually show up. Of the few people who show up even less come ready to learn (3-6, Matthew 22:11-14). Sometimes, we need to keep wisdom to ourselves and wait for the foolish person to get injured and then be there to lift that person up (7-9). The foundation of Wisdom’s home is built upon the “fear of the Lord”. When we apply Wisdom’s counsel, we will grow wise and the pitfalls we have crawled out of will provide “On the Job Training (OJT)” (10-12).

Acts 9:1-19 – Saul’s Conversion. When we last heard about Saul, he was raving home churches in Jerusalem (Acts 8:1). Anybody who worshiped the Lord Jesus was persecuted and put to death. Because “the Way” was spreading its influence to the gentile town of Damascus, which is located in southwest Syria, Saul got permission from the High Priest to take his show on the road (1-2). If were a disciple of Jesus in 1st century Jerusalem or Damascus, I’d probably want to see Saul put to death for murder. The thing is the Lord had plans for Saul just as He has plans for you and me (3-4). Only Saul saw the light of the Lord, the contingent of men heard the voice but saw nothing. The presence of the Lord blinded Saul which basically stopped him dead in his tracks. Saul was taken to a room in Damascus where he would not eat or drink for 3 days of fasting for the Lord’s message and direction (5-9).

1 Samuel 16:1-13 – David Anointed King. For a while, Samuel grieved for Saul like one would a deceased family member. The Lord gives us time to grieve but at some point in time, He tells us it’s time to move on. The next king would hail from the home of Jesse the Bethlehemite (1). Samuel’s mission was private because telling Saul what he was doing would spell certain death (). When he arrived in Bethlehem, it created a stir because everybody knew what happened to Saul and they didn’t want a fight. Samuel invited Jesse and his entire family to a sacrifice (4-7). So Jesse paraded his sons in front of Samuel and each one looked like “the chosen one” yet, he was reminded that the Lord doesn’t look at physical qualities, He looks at the spirit. After the last boy was paraded past Samuel and was not chosen, he asked Jesse if he had any other sons. David, the youngest son, was out in the field with the sheep which was his job. So Jesse sent for David (8-12).

Bible Readings for 2/3/2022

Deuteronomy 23:15-25

Psalms 39

Proverbs 8:22-36

Acts 8:9-25

1 Samuel 15:24-35

Mike’s Notes

Deuteronomy 23:15-25 – Miscellaneous Laws. The term “slavery” in modern-day circles is seen as “evil” and the master should be beaten for it. The practice of slavery has been abolished for several years now. In Old Testament times, there were two conditions by which a person was enslaved, either was captured in battle or sold themselves into servitude to pay a debt or they were paupers (Slavery). A person or people who escaped from slavery in a foreign country could seek sanctuary in Israel as a free man/woman (15-16). The reason the Israelites were not to return the former slave was that they would know what it was like to be enslaved. The nation was to have nothing to do with cult prostitution even if the remaining nations were involved in it (17-18). Academics argue that cult prostitution did not exist because there was no evidence of it other than the reference to Judah and Tamar (Genesis 38:12-19, Slavery-Israel). The nation could only charge interest on loans to foreign nations (19-20). When you make a vow, honor it and fulfill it (21-23). The purpose of the law was to enable the people to live together in harmony. Stealing your neighbor’s property started fights and led to war (24-25).

Psalms 39 – What is the Measure of My Days? Ordering our lives according to the law is about living in harmony in a community and/or kingdom. The problem is, we struggle with what comes out of our mouths (1-3). Because our time on earth is short compared to the world around us, we are to make the most of the time we are given (4-6). With a copy of His laws in one hand and “Hope” in the other, and “Holiness to the Lord” etched on the tablets of our hearts, we can approach the struggles of life without surrendering to sin (7-11). When we stumble, we have an advocate; we may not like how we are delivered but it will always be in keeping with His Holiness (12-13, 1 John 2:1).

Proverbs 8:22-36 – I Wisdom. Before the earth was formed, Wisdom was hired to guide the Lord G-d (22-31). If the Lord found it so important to use Wisdom’s guidance, how much more should we? Wisdom is not spiritual and has nothing to do with religious beliefs, it is that quiet voice that leads us along life’s pathways. When we do not listen to her, we make mistakes that we end up paying for sort of like what happened to Judah (32-36, Genesis 38).

Acts 8:9-25 – Simon the Magician. Simon was a gifted magician and could convince people that he had the power of the “Great One”. No matter how gifted he was or how many people followed him, he was no match for the power of the Holy Spirit. Under Philip’s pastoral leadership, many came to the Lord and were baptized. The move of the Holy Spirit on Samaria so influenced Simon that he too came to the Lord and was baptized. Remember Samaria was the place no good Jew would go to because of prejudice on both sides of the coin that started shortly after Solomon’s death and Jeroboam ascended to the throne in Samaria/Israel (John 4:9, ). Simon, having watched the power of the Holy Spirit come upon the people after Peter and John laid hands on them, wanted to add that power to his arsenal of magic. The thing is, it was a free gift that would alter the pathways of the individual and empowered them for ministry. Having been rebuked by Peter and John, Simon’s outlook on life and fear of the consequences of sin compelled him to repent (9-25).

1 Samuel 15:24-35 – The Kingdom Ripped from Saul. The final nail in the coffin of Saul’s enduring kingdom was his disobedience in the battle over the Amalekites. What Samuel was sent to do was neither pleasant nor was it easy. The Lord’s anointing on Saul that happened the day he prophesied with the prophets at Gibeah, would be removed a few days later (24-31, 1 Samuel 10:10-13). Samuel’s last work on behalf of Saul was to complete Saul’s assignment (32-33). Know this, Samuel loved Saul even after Saul’s dismal work at Amalek and the last thing he would want to do was “remove the crown of Saul’s anointment”. In the same way, when we sin before G-d and continue to be disobedient, he will remove us from service but He will still love us (34-35).

Bible Readings for 2/1/2022

Deuteronomy 23:9-14

Psalms 38

Proverbs 8:12-21

Acts 8:1-8

1 Samuel 15:1-23

Mike’s Notes

Deuteronomy 23:9-14 – Uncleanliness in the Camp. When the Lord sends us into battle whether it be a missionary trip or actual warfare, it is important to keep our camp clean. The chink(s) in our armor will cause problems when we can least afford it/them. When a lawyer presents a case before a judge, he/she must know everything about his/her client including indiscretions. In the same way, when the Lord goes before us into battle if there are areas in our life that are sinful He would become as bad as the people He is fighting. A point to remember about this section is that these were human beings and, like us, have their emotions, needs, and wants. The problem is the Devil uses these things against us and it is for that reason we are told to keep our camp clean. Keeping a “Clean camp” transcends picking up the debris, it implies taking care of the things that irritate us, resolving interpersonal issues, and forgiving others so that these things will not stand in the way of a victory (Mike Krier).

Psalms 38 – Do Not Forsake Me, O Lord. One of the hardest things we will ever do is go back to the one we have offended. David could have exercised his kingly prerogative but he knew the law of the Lord and he also knew why Saul’s kingdom did not endure. Equally, he knew that what lay in the balance was the people of his kingdom and the soldiers he represented. For that reason, he bowed before the Lord and confessed his sins (1-2). When we confess our sins before the Lord, He applies a balm to our wounds that disinfect the wound (3-8). For a while, that wound will burn until every ounce of poison is removed. Once the poison is removed, healing can begin (9-14). When the righteous fall, the world rejoices and makes sport of it and, in some ways, makes them feel better about living in sin (15-22)

Proverbs 8:12-21 – Wisdom’s Fruit. Each of us makes decisions that affect our family, community, nation, and mostly ourselves. Seeking and applying wisdom to our life’s choices is not about religion, it’s about making good choices that have a positive effect on everyone we serve. Some of us, me included, make choices “off the cuff” or, “without thinking” and when we do that we get ourselves into trouble. It is for that reason that Prudence and Wisdom have a working relationship (12-13). When we seek wisdom, we need to be prepared to receive the information whether we like it or not. Wisdom’s client list is lengthy and those who listened to her were not ashamed for doing so (14-21).

Acts 8:1-8 – Saul Ravages the Church. Saul was a Pharisee who had grown up listening to the poison of the Pharisees coupled with misinformation. Armed with this misinformation and poison, he set out to destroy those who didn’t agree with the Pharisees (1-3). The problem the Pharisees and their student had was that the more they tried to remove the dissenters, the more the movement spread.  The power of healing and restoration was in the hands of men and women whose hearts were open to the Lord and obedient to Him; one such person was Philip who spoke the power of the Lord and brought fruit that backed up his claim (4-8).

1 Samuel 15:1-23 – The Lord Rejects Saul. When Israel was just a band of people leaving slavery, Amelek opposed the nation and threatened to destroy them if they so much as put a single foot on their territory (Exodus 17:8-16). After Israel became a nation and developed an army, the Lord sent Saul to completely destroy Amalek and not leave a human or animal alive (1-3). Saul called up the army, put on the weapons of warfare, and went to Amalek. The Kenites lived among the Amalekites and were told to get away from Amalek because of what was about to happen (4-6). Saul and Israel defeated Amalek to complete surrender. Everyone except for the King and the fattened animals was put to death and this is where the problems began for Saul (7-9). It grieved the Lord to reject Saul because like all of mankind Saul was precious to Him. Samuel was sent to Saul with the Lord’s mandate which was something Samuel did not relish (10-11). Saul had set up a monument to himself on Carmel (12). When Samuel confronted Saul, Saul at first tried to make the men he served as the “culprit” sort of like Adam did to Eve and Eve to the serpent (13-16, Genesis 3:12-13). It was then that the infamous pink slip came out coupled with the reasoning behind it (17-21). The Lord was us to obey Him without question. When we are disobedient even in the smallest detail, we have failed in our mission (22-23).

Bible Readings for 1/31/2022

Deuteronomy 23:1-7

Psalms 37:30-40

Proverbs 8:1-11

Acts 7

1 Samuel 14:36-52

Mike’s Notes

Deuteronomy 23:1-7 – Those Excluded from the Assembly. When you read this segment you may ask, as I have asked, “why can’t a person with crushed testicles or male organ cut off be allowed access to the assembly of the Lord (1)? The answer has to do with identity issues according to an online document (Matter-of-identity). Usually, this is done as part of identifying with a foreign G-d. In the same way, the offspring of a forbidden union were excluded as well (2). Moabites and Ammonites were excluded because Balak hired Balaam to curse the nation (3-6, Numbers 22-25). The caveat to this is that Ruth was a Moabitess who became Jewish and denounced her Moabite nationality (Ruth 1:16-18). The Edomites, relatives of Esau, were allowed into the assembly after the third generation (7-8).

Psalms 37:30-40 – Righteous and Unrighteous. What is the difference between the righteous and unrighteous? Is it the size of the cross on his/her neck or the version of the bible he/she reads? The difference lies in what comes out of his/her mouth and the pathway their feet choose to walk down. Going to church, singing Christian songs, and quoting scripture doesn’t make one “righteous” any more than carrying a pail of paint, choosing brushes, and reading up on art makes you an artist. The outward manifestations need to first come from the inside. Unless there is the spiritual rebirth of the heart, all of the confessions, tears, and amens will do nothing and that is the reason Nicodemus could not understand what Jesus was trying to get across (30-31, John 3:9-13). When we can stand before the Lord and know that we are innocent of a given charge, it will not matter what the unrighteous person does to make us look evil, it will not work. If act like Cain and give a feeble excuse, we will receive just punishment (32-33). When we are brought before the law for a charge that we did not commit, we owe it to ourselves to wait for the Lord and make no rash moves or utter rash words. The wicked person will go away in time and nobody will miss him/her (34-40).

Proverbs 8:1-11 – Blessings of Wisdom. A rhetorical question, for example, verse 1, asks a question for which the writer is not looking for an answer. The writer already knows that Wisdom does have a voice because he has sat under his father’s tutelage. The reason for asking the question is to get a point across, “we need Wisdom’s counsel to overcome foolishness (1-5). When we listen to Wisdom’s counsel, we grow wise and learn to avoid the pitfalls that get us into trouble (6-7). I once received an advertisement that was titled,  “a looming disaster coming to America”. When I brought it to the attention of my Financial person, he said “You need to be careful because something like that is usually trying to sell something.” As I looked a little bit further, I found that was indeed trying to sell something. In the same way, the Devil’s minions sell us things that play to our fears and doubts. Wisdom will never lie to us because it has nothing to gain from it (8-11).

Acts 7 – Stephen’s Speech. After being seized for talking about the Kingdom of G-d, the Sanhedrin mustered false witnesses for the express purpose of putting Stephen to death. Stephen could have categorically denied the charges. Instead, he used his time wisely by reciting Israel’s story. As you may remember, the Sanhedrin proudly declared that their father is “Abraham” (John 8:39). Abraham was a man of faith and obedience which, when lining up Abraham against the Sanhedrin, you’ll find that the two don’t align. In the same way, when we call ourselves “Christian” but do not do what Jesus did, we are Christians in name only. Here’s the problem, when we are disobedient and come in contact with those who are obedient, the spirit of jealousy arises in us and will seek to get rid of the sore spot (9-16). In the same way, when Moses confronted two Israelites for fighting was confronted for his killing of the Egyptian taskmaster, he ended up running to avoid prosecution (23-29). After being in exile for 40 years, Moses was sent back to Egypt by the hand of the Lord (30-43). Sin compels us to resist G-d’s plan for our lives just as it had been for the Sanhedrin (44-53). In the end, Stephen was killed (54-60).

1 Samuel 14:36-52 – Saul Fights Israel’s Enemies. Having eaten, Saul wanted to take the battle to the Philistines. The priest interjected and suggested seeking the Lord G-d’s direction. When Saul inquired of the Lord, he received no direction has he had previously. Believing it was because of a current sin that he received no direction, he set up an inquisition among his troops by casting lots. When the lot fell on Jonathan, his father asked him what he had done so Jonathan told him. Jonathan would have been executed if not for the troops ransoming him (43-46). Saul and the armies of Israel would be locked in many battles for the entire time of his reign; the main army they would fight against was the Philistines (47-52).

Bible Readings 1/30/2022

Deuteronomy 22:13-30

Psalms 37:20-29

Proverbs 7

Acts 6:8-15

1 Samuel 14:24-52

Mike’s Notes

Deuteronomy 22:13-30 – Laws Concerning Sexual Immorality. Marriage in ancient Israel allowed men to marry multiple wives. When a man wanted to marry a woman, he gave a gift to the girl’s father called “Mohar” (Marriage-traditions-ancient-Israel). Sexual immorality according to Mosaic law is harsh because the woman ends up on the short end of the stick in most situations. Consider the case of the man who hates the wife he married. When we read these laws, the thought may cross our minds “this is utterly preposterous!” but when you line them up with examples from the Bible cast you’ll get a better understanding of the reasoning behind them (13-21). The two absolute no-nos are adultery and incest (22, 30, Matthew 5:32). While it may appear that the Israelites had sexual immorality well defined, they too have been grappling with the issue for countless years. These laws present an “ideal situation” or “black and white” (Sex-outside-of-marriage).

Psalms 37:20-29 – The Battle of the Wicked versus the Upright. The battle of the Wicked versus the Upright is over ideals just like the battles of the Orange versus the Green, the Hebraics versus the Hellenists, and North versus the South. Ideally, we would follow G-d’s plan for our life. The problem is when we turn our eyes from the Lord to the world and we change the definition of “Upright” to fit our viewpoint. When we change the definition and live according to our “definition”, predictable results follow like the case of Lamech (Genesis 4:23-24). The Lord made us upright that is, to have a moral compass what we do with it, bad or good, will determine the paths we will go down (20-29).

Proverbs 7 – The Adultress. Wisdom is a defense mechanism in that it questions our decisions and causes us to rethink what we are about to do. The young man, probably just a little over 14 years old, wanted the right of passage sort of like going into a porn store or buying cigarettes (6-9). The prostitute had been around for quite some time so she knew all of the tricks of the trade whereas the young man knew none (10-20). The young man was lured in with the prospect of a fun afternoon unfortunately, he did not know what was waiting for him at her house (21-23). Wisdom is not equated with “killjoy”, it knows a trap when it sees it (24-27).

Acts 6:8-15 – Stephen is Seized. Of the seven men appointed to serve, Stephen was a true servant of the Lord just like Philip. Because of Stephen’s devotion to the Lord and the church, he was doing good works that elicited “jealousy” from the other denominations (8-10). Because he obeyed the laws of the land and Moses, he prospered where others failed. To get support from the community, the opponents had to use an old trick and that is, “charge him with something that the people supported” like the church and G-d’s laws (11-15).

1 Samuel 14:24-35 – Saul’s Rash Vow. Saul needed a “win” but how he went about getting it is what got him into trouble. In ancient Hebraic culture, it was not uncommon for a man/woman to utter a vow or curse or vengeance that involved fasting (24, Acts 23:12-14, ). Jonathan had been fighting the Philistines and had not heard his father’s vow and most likely would not have obeyed it anyway. While in the forest, Jonathan and his men saw honey on the ground. Jonathan’s men had heard Saul’s vow and refrained from eating the honey. Jonathan, on the other hand, tipped his spear into the honey ate it and his eyes became bright (25-30). Because of Saul’s rash vow, the men had become malnourished so when they came upon the spoils of the enemy, they ate like ravenous dogs and even after the meat with the blood which was against Mosaic law (31-32, Leviticus 17:11-12). When Saul got wind of what was happening, he erected an altar so that the men would not violate the Lord’s laws (33-35).

 

Bible Readings for 1/29/2022

Deuteronomy 22:1-12

Psalms 37:1-19

Proverbs 6:20-35

Acts 6:1-7

1 Samuel 14:1-23

Mike’s Notes

Deuteronomy 22:1-12 – Various Laws. One of the things I really love about this culture is, “how the peace is maintained”. In today’s world, we say “finders keepers, losers weepers” and think nothing about it. The problem is, it creates fights. Returning animals that go astray draw a community together because they get to know one another and the Devil is not given a seat at the table (1-4). The practice of men wearing women’s clothing and vice versa is acceptable in our culture. In this culture and in the Kingdom of G-d, it is not acceptable because it mingles the genders (5, ). Letting the mother (probably a chicken) bird go and taking her eggs provides a source of food (6-7). While it may seem silly to build a protective fence around the upper level of a home, it most likely kept honest people honest (8). Mixing items like cloth types, grape species, and plow animals creates a by-product or “anomaly” which runs awry of G-d’s plans (9-11, ). I want you if you have not done so already, to underline the words “shall not” which means “there is a way and it can be done but you are not to do it”. Like most if not all of G-d’s commands, He does not give blow-by-blow reasoning behind the command because He seeks obedience from His children (Genesis 3:5-6, Acts 1:4). The practice of wearing tassels on the four corners of their garment was meant to be a physical reminder of G-d’s laws and commands (12).

Psalms 37:1-19 – He Will Not Forsake His Saints. The one thing the Lord does not want us to be is, “afraid” like Elijah was (1-2). Despite what the world does and says, we are to trust the Lord. Trusting the Lord means waiting for Him which is what got Saul into trouble (3-6). When you consider how the wicked prospers, it may seem like G-d’s got it wrong because we live a righteous albeit poor lifestyle. The thing is, the Lord is concerned about the health of the inward person. When you consider the lives of the wicked, they have no peace, and no joy (7-11). We are never to be afraid of bullies and we should never run from them because, no matter where you go or what laws prohibit it, they will exist. That said, we are not to pick a fight with them nor coalesce with them we are to pray for them and live according to G-d’s laws (12-19).

Proverbs 6:20-35 – Warnings Against Adultery. “Holiness to the Lord” needs to be our guiding principle despite what the world does or says (20-26). Prostitution is “the oldest business” and destroyed lives is fodder for this business (Prostitution). When it comes to adultery, just like anything else, we can justify our actions to fit our choice(s). Remember, when the Devil presents enticement, it is over the top and more than we thought we’d get. The problem is, no matter how we justify our actions we will pay the ultimate price for bad decisions (27-35).

Acts 6:1-7 – Seven Chosen to Serve. The Nazarene sect had started off small but grew as the Lord added to the numbers. The thing is, the managerial model never changed just like Moses did when he came out of Egypt until his father-in-law had a conversation with him (Exodus 18:17-23). In the same way, the managers, the 12, decided to branch out and add servants to the organization. The Hellenists were Jews who spoke almost exclusive Greek and were part of the diaspora who had returned to Jerusalem; the Hebraic Jews spoke Aramaic which caused fights (Hellenists). The odd-ball of the seven chosen, Nicholas, was a gentile who converted to Judaism and then to Christianity. The problem was that he would teach “compromise” and would create problems for the churches in Revelations (1-6). The thing is by branching out, helped the church to grow and at the same time meet the needs of the community (7).

1 Samuel 14:1-23 – Jonathan Defeats the Philistines. Saul and his army were stymied in the rocks and clefts hiding from the Philistines. So Jonathan and his armor-bearer, like David, took their lives in their hands and went to fight the Philistines. The proof of the Lord’s direction, just like a fleece, was if the Philistines said, “wait where you are”, “Come down to us”, or “Come up to us”. The Philistines thought Jonathan was a fool and needed to be taught a thing or two. The thing is, Jonathan had done more to route the enemy than all of the hiding out in caves would ever do (6-15). When Saul heard the uproar, he called the calvary and they marched into battle. The people that were fearful and had hidden in the small surrounding communities came to the party. The problem was the party was just about over, the Philistines were fighting each other. In the end, Israel was saved (16-23).

Bible Readings for 1/28/2022

Deuteronomy 21:18-23

Psalms 36

Proverbs 6:1-19

Acts 5:12-42

1 Samuel 13:8-23

Mike’s Notes

Deuteronomy 21:18-23 – A Rebellious Son. When you read this section and the one following, you can infer a few things about Jesus’ last days. The Pharisees and Sadducees, I believe anyway, misapplied this segment from the law to suit their purposes. In the same way, many misapply scriptures to fit the circumstances and situations of the time. Pharisees wanted to stone Jesus a couple of times because he made it sound like “He was before Moses” making himself co-equal with G-d (John 8:48-58). Not listening to his father and mother would have him guilty of the 5th commandment and violation of G-d’s word. Of course, just as there is a “law”, there are also extenuating circumstances when we need to think things through, for example, Adam, Eve, and the tempting fruit, Ananias and Sapphira (18-21, Genesis 3:17-18, Acts 5:1-11). According to the Blue Letter Bible Commentary, the person being put on a tree was stoned to death and left up overnight as an example to the rest of the community (22-23, BLB). The capital punishment of crucifixion was created by the Persians in 400 – 300 BC and then further developed by the Romans (Crucifixion).

Psalms 36 – How Precious Is Your Steadfast Love. Just as there are two voices in the book of Proverbs, so are there two voices in the book of Psalms. The voice you listen to is the one that you tune your ears to. The voice of wickedness is the Devil who whispers in our ears so quietly that you would mistake it for your thoughts. You will notice the stark difference between the Devil’s voice and the voice of the Lord G-d and that is, “the Lord will not lie to you”. The Devil starts trouble by making your argument “right” and the opposition “wrong” (1-4). In the Lord’s eyes unlike the eyes of the world, we don’t have to be anything to be loved by Him. When we allow His Holy Spirit to live in our hearts, He breeds life in us and gives up hope to face the disasters of our lives (5-9). For His steadfast love and righteousness to live in us, we need to have our eyes, ears, and heart open and receptive to Him despite what the world says or does (10-12).

Proverbs 6:1-19 – Practical Warnings. These practical warnings have nothing to do with worship to the Lord but have everything to do with the pathway that you walk. For many of you including me, our mouth is our greatest outlet for causing us problems. When we get ourselves into trouble, one of the worst things we can do is, “nothing” (1-5). Laziness is another culprit that creates problems for us. The reason, I believe anyway, that the Lord cares so much about us staying productive is that when the wheels come off the axel, the first person we turn to a listening ear. If we want good examples to live by, we need to go no further than 1mm off of the ground (6-11). Wicked people, especially those who enjoy opulent lifestyles, are often emulated and are the reason for the money put into advertising their product(s). When these people fail, it becomes front-line news (12-15). Of the six things the Lord hates, one of them is not the individual(s) but the attributes that brought the person down (16-19).

Acts 5:12-42 – Many Signs and Wonders Done. During the early part of the Apostolic times, the Lord moved mightily among the rag-tag group. Thousands of people came to Peter many to be healed and others to hear the Word of truth. When the people heard that Peter was coming through town, they put their sick and wounded citizens out with the hopes that Peter’s shadow would cross over them (12-16). Unfortunately, while the healing was wonderful, a dagger was being driven deeper into the heart of the Pharisees and Sadducees. On one such occasion, the Apostles were arrested and put in prison; An Angel released them from the prison and sent them back out to the place they were arrested (17-20).  The 2nd time the guards came for the Apostles, they treated them with a lot more respect sort of like when the prophet Elijah was asked nicely to go and see the king (21-26, 2 King 1). The counsel was visibly upset that their rules were not adhered to. The 900LB gorilla in the room was that the Sanhedrin feared being found out for their duplicity. In Israel’s history, people had done what the Apostles were doing in that they built up a following only for the leader to be killed and the followers dispersed. Gamaliel, a teacher of the Law, reminded the men that if what the Apostles were doing was of G-d then the leaders would find themselves in opposition to G-d (27-42).

1 Samuel 13:8-23 – Saul’s Unlawful Sacrifice. Yesterday, I referred back to a Mosaic law for “warfare”. Saul had adhered to this law; for that reason, Saul was unprepared for the battle at Micmash. The 600 men that were with him ran away from the battle. Samuel had not arrived by the 7th day for the sacrifice. Saul decided to hold the sacrifice as a ploy to rally the troops which was a costly mistake in judgment. When Samuel did arrive, Saul gave a feeble excuse for his actions hoping to win the prophet’s adulation. Instead, Saul was castigated (8-12). Because of disobedience, Saul’s kingdom would not be enduring like that of David his replacement (13-15). The first challenge Saul had following Samuel’s prophecy of a prince among the people would be “battle armament”. There were no blacksmiths in Israel so their equipment could not be sharpened, spears and hooks could not be made, axes could not be sharpened, and goads could not be set add to the mix was the exorbitant price in Philistia for blacksmith work (16-23).

 

Bible Readings 1/27/2022

Deuteronomy 21:10-17

Psalms 35:15-28

Proverbs 5

Acts 5:1-11

1 Samuel 13:1-7

Mike’s Notes

Deuteronomy 21:10-17 – Marrying Female Captives. In the culture of the time, it was not uncommon for a man to have multiple wives. The more wives a man had the more children that would be born with the hopes of having males. Because there were cities where the people did not live, females were captured. The man could marry these women because there was no law against it. The only caveat was that she had to remove the clothes that she brought with her and clip her nails. After a month of mourning, the man could freely marry her (10-14). There would be times in which a man had a woman he loved and one that he did not sort of like Hagar. The firstborn male son was referred to as “the first sign of my strength” or, sexual prowess. If the law of the firstborn was to receive a double portion of the father’s wealth had been applied in Abram’s time, Ishmael would have received the blessing (15-17, Genesis 16:7-16).

Psalms 35:15-28 – False Friends. It is said, “A false friend and a shadow attend only while the sun shines (Benjamin Franklin). It is with this understanding that the writer, David, is rebuking those who came for the party but left when life wasn’t at its best (15-16). The Lord will always be with us even when life gets difficult. When we act like the young man in Luke 15:11, the Lord will let us spend down to our last dime and live in squaller until we wise up (17-18). Once we have come to our senses, He gets to work picking up the pieces of our shattered existence. Unfortunately, no matter how well we clean up and no matter how our life has been changed, we always are referred to as the “man in the pigpen”. There is a proverb that says, “Don’t gloat when your enemy falls” (Proverbs 24:17-18). Proverbs, as I have said a few days ago, is non-religious meaning, it applies to everyone and is the reason even the strongest fall when they first learn to deceive. Jesus during his ordeal did not raise his voice nor decry the false charges, he let them have their moment of glory knowing how short it would be (19-21, Isaiah 42:3). No matter how much we want retribution, the greatest strength we have is “resolve to be a healer/restorer” (22-28).

Proverbs 5 – Warning Against Adultery. This proverb is accredited to Solomon, son of David, who was an offspring of an adultress union. If anybody would understand the complexities of adultery, it had to be Solomon because he grew up in a home with brothers from different marriages. From the moment David and Bathsheba connected to his last breath, David’s home was in a constant power struggle (20-23). When you read this section, you might think the Lord only prohibits the man from committing adultery or that only the woman is the culprit, change the terms around and the argument remains the same (15-19). Adultery ruins home and it doesn’t matter what argument we used to defend our actions (7-14). Remember, when life turns sour in a marriage, it is then that the minions of hell plant seeds that will lead us to a trap (1-6).

Acts 5:1-11 – Ananias and Sapphira. When this couple sold a tract of land, they had the right to withhold a portion of the money, give it all, or keep it all. The problem for them was that they were not honest about it. Once convicted, Ananias fell down dead and his wife 3 hours later. The reason they sold the property was that a few days earlier Barnabus sold land, gave all of the proceeds to the Apostles, and were adulated for it. Jealousy and envy are all part of the Devil’s arsenal to destroy harmony in the church and family units. Mockery, if allowed to go unchecked, will destroy G-d’s plans and purposes for our lives that we are told to “cast out the mocker …” (1-11, Proverbs 22:10).

1 Samuel 13:1-7 – Saul Fights the Philistines. In the 2nd year of Saul’s reign, Jonathan with 1000 men defeated a garrison at Geba. At the time of the battle, Saul along with 2000 men was in northern Bethlehem. Having sent most of his fighting men home, Saul had to call up the army to finish the battle. The thing is, Saul, failed to remember the Mosaic law about going to war (Deuteronomy 20:1-9). Fearful people will spread their message to every ear that is bent to them. Just like it is when we fill up a food tray and find out our eyes were bigger than our stomachs, so it was with the battle that day (1-4).  Facing down 30000 chariots, 6000 horsemen, and an unspecified army complement created fear in the hearts of Saul’s men. For this reason, the men hid behind rocks and in the clefts of the mountain (5-7).

 

Bible Readings for 1/26/2022

Deuteronomy 21:1-9

Psalms 35:1-14

Proverbs 4:20-27

Acts 4:23-37

1 Samuel 12

Mike’s Notes

Deuteronomy 21:1-9 – Atonement for Unsolved Murders. When someone was found murdered in the land, it was not to be taken lightly. Murders that are unsolvable because of lack of evidence, the leaders and priests would convene to measure the distance from the body to the closest village (1-3). The leaders in the town that was the closest would wash their hands over the atonement animal and state that they have no knowledge of who committed the murder and that they had nothing to do with it. With that, the leaders were to say “accept the atonement, O Lord, for your people Israel …” (4-8). The reason for being so strict with murders even if they are unsolved was that blood pollutes the land (9, Numbers 35:33-34).

Psalms 35:1-14 – The Court of Public Opinion. When David was Saul’s bodyguard and the Commander of Saul’s armies, he led the nation in campaigns and won many battles. The problem was that the court of Public Opinion changed when Saul became jealous (1-3, 1 Samuel 18:6-9). David would not lift a finger to harm the Lord’s anointed (4-6, 1 Samuel 24:6-7). The reason for Saul’s change of heart was that the Spirit of the Lord departed from him and the spirit of the Devil took up residence which caused more problems for him than if he had never been crowned the King (7-10, 1 Samuel 16:14, Genesis 4:7, Matthew 12:43-45). When a public personality, like the king, is weighed one way or another, people will jump on the bandwagon to garner favor (11-14).

Proverbs 4:20-27 – Avoid the BandWagon mentality. The phrase “jumping on the bandwagon” was coined in 1848 during the Zachary Tyler Presidential campaign. The implication is that we accept the “court of public opinion” without once thinking for ourselves. For this reason, the father admonishes his son to incline his ears to what his father is teaching him (20-21). His father’s wisdom may not seem popular nor, did his father follow them but, that did not take the power away from the wisdom (22). We are given authority over only one person and that is “us”. As parents, we are given the task of raising our children which means “we are accountable for their care and upbringing”; as the children become adults in the Lord’s eyes and that of the community, the control and authority over their lives transfer to the child (23-24). The reason for broaching this was that when we raise children up in the admonition of the Lord, they will not depart from it when they age (25-27, Proverbs 22:6).

Acts 4:23-37 – The Believers Pray for Boldness. Peter and John had been held by the Sanhedrin for questioning. Once released, they shared what they were told by the Sanhedrin to their friends. With one voice they lifted their heads in prayer to the Lord for boldness. When the Holy Spirit came and empowered them (23-31). Because of the empowerment, the people shared everything or, “had everything in common”. Now there is a problem with this in that one person sells his land and gave it all to the Apostles and lauded for it. Unfortunately, it also creates envy as we’ll find out tomorrow (32-37).

1 Samuel 12– Samuel’s Farewell Address. After Saul was firmly seated as the 1st King over Israel, Samuel confronted the nation over the sinful condition of the people. The reason for asking if he had taken anything without paying for it or had defrauded the people was to be sure that he, Samuel, wasn’t at fault. Samuel was now well advanced in years and his sons were still alive which is a testament to being faithful (1-5, Psalms 91:15-16). Multiple times in the time of the Judges the nation had gone back on their promises to be obedient. In Israel’s history, the nation had enjoyed both blessings and curses. Curses came in the form of being in slavery for varying lengths of time (6-9). Each time the people cried out, they were delivered from whatever hell-hole they found themselves in (10-11). Recently, Nahash had threatened Jabesh-Gilead and the Lord responded by sending Samuel and Saul; the nation was victorious in battle (12). With these lessons, the people were being admonished to obey the king and serve him with all of their hearts (13-18). Remember, it was not wrong to ask for a king, it was the way they asked for it. In the same way that the people asked for forgiveness, Samuel admonished them to continue praying and don’t stop being obedient even after I leave” (19-23). Let this be a new day not more of the same (24-25).

Bible Readings 1/25/2022

Deuteronomy 20

Psalms 34:11-22

Proverbs 4:10-19

Acts 4:1-22

1 Samuel 11

Mike’s Notes

Deuteronomy 20 – Laws Concerning Warfare. The nation was on the precipice of entering Canaan. When they crossed the border, the battles would begin immediately first at Jericho. In battle, the one factor that will cause the most problems is, “fear” (1). It would seem rather odd to reduce the size of an army by removing those whose heads and hearts were not in the battle. But, the Lord is not concerned about the army’s complement, because when all hearts and minds are in the battle, it doesn’t matter what the size of the opponent’s army is (2-9, Deuteronomy 28:7). Because the Lord owned Canaan and the world at large, He could give it to “whomsoever” (Jeremiah 27:4-5). In this case, the land was given to the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. The people who made peace with Israel became their slaves or servants. Those who chose to fight for their land would be engaged in battle; some of the nations retained a hold on the land where they lived (10-12). When it came to the plunder, in the cities where the people were going to live, everything was to be destroyed (13-18). The reason the two and a half tribes went home with plunder is that the cities were nowhere near them. At no time were the people to cut down the trees during the years of warfare (19-20).

Psalms 34:11-22 – Let Me Teach You the Fear of the Lord. What we desire in life, we generally go in search of it. If it is the desire of the heart to enjoy the best life has to offer, we need to approach it with our eyes and hearts on the Lord (11-14). When we are attentive to the Lord’s commands and precepts, He listens to us and delivers us out of the troubles that oppose us. The caveat is that the Lord does not answer prayers like one would get candy from a vending machine. Sometimes, it is months or years before the answer comes through like the case of Daniel and David. The reasoning behind this is that there is often something the Lord has in mind for us and/or our opponent to learn so, we need to trust Him and never lose faith in Him (15-22, Daniel 9:20-23).

Proverbs 4:10-19 – Wisdom’s Power. The Lord’s desire for us is that we will live fruitful lives, be happy, and be content (10-11, 3 John 1:2-4). The problem is, for us to garner those things we need to do things G-d’s way that is, “follow His laws and precepts”. Unfortunately, we humans have the nasty tendency to do things our way. The problem is, it gets us into trouble eventually. We may go days, weeks, months, and years before our actions catch up with us. For this reason, Solomon is trying to relay to his sons’ words of wisdom which he had not followed. The thing to keep in mind is that although Solomon had not listened to his father’s counsel, it did not mean that “Listening to wisdom is foolhardy” (12-17). When we listen to the Lord’s counsel, we will not understand His logic until we get to the end of the journey. Those that chose to follow the pathway of the wicked end up with the same reward “0” (18-19).

Acts 4:1-22 – Peter and John Before the Council. After healing a man who was over the age of 40, the duo was called in for questioning by the High Priestly family. What it comes down to, I believe anyway, is “professional jealousy”. The family had retained the position as “High Priest” since the time before Jesus (1-12). The differences between the High Priest family and the duo were, the family had healed nor restored anyone and, the duo had no credentials to back up what they were saying (13-17). This would be the first test of Jesus’ promise about “not being afraid when called in for questioning” (Luke 12:11-12).  When they were restricted from speaking in Jesus’ name, the duo stood tall and refused to offend the throne of G-d in the essence of keeping out of trouble (18-21). The High Priest was rendered powerless because the man who was healed was over the age of 40 and would not grow out of his ailment (22).

1 Samuel 11 – Saul Defeats the Ammonites. Nahash the Ammonite boldly attacked Jabesh-Gilead, which belonged to the half-tribe of Manasseh, the people wanted to make peace with Nahash. The condition of peace would be that every man, woman, and child would have their eyes gouged out. At first, the people willing accepted Nahash’s offer and then wrote to King Saul for assistance (1-6). When Saul got the message, he cut oxen in pieces and sent them to all of the tribes in Israel. The purpose of cutting the oxen into pieces and sending it to the tribes in Israel implied, “If you don’t come to the aid of the nation, you will be cut off from the nation”. So 300,000 men mustered for the army (7-9). Because this was a foreign nation and not the place where they lived, they could take all of the spoils for themselves (Deuteronomy 20:16). Saul sent a message to Jabesh-Gilead letting them that the hour of their deliverance would be “tomorrow” which was favorably received. The next day Israel converged on the Ammonites putting them to death (10-11). King Saul now had a “win” under his belt and the people were more receptive to Saul’s reign. The nation wanted to petition Samuel to put those who refused Saul’s reign to death Saul had different ideas. So, at Gilgal Samuel renewed the inauguration (12-14).

Bible Readings 1/23/2022

Reading #1 – Deuteronomy 19:14-21

Reading #2 – Psalms 34:1-10

Reading #3 – Proverbs 4:1-9

Reading #4 – Acts 3

Reading #5 – 1 Samuel 10:17-27

 

Mike’s Notes

Deuteronomy 19:14-21 – Property Boundaries and Laws Concerning Witnesses. After the people conquered the land, the families were each given a tract of land as an inheritance. These boundary markers would be established by the leadership and were not subject to the whims of the people (14). As I mentioned yesterday, every case must be established by two or more witnesses. The judges and priests must investigate the case thoroughly. If a person was found guilty of being a false witness, the individual(s) would receive the same punishment that they sought for the innocent person. When justice has been properly dispensed, the people would fear and never commit a crime again. Conversely, if justice is corrupted, the people would learn to do evil and not fear reprisal. The law “an eye for an eye …” would come at a price.

Psalms 34:1-10 – Taste and See That the Lord is Good. “Praising the Lord at all times …” implies praising Him in the good, bad, and the boy oh boy. In the same way that the strength of a marriage is tested by the bad times, so is our praise to the Lord (1-3). At the Feast of Booths or the Fall harvest, the people would bring the best samples of the produce they harvested. Now, it is not inconceivable for people to buy some crops and claim the produce came from their land. In the same way, we can claim the good things the Lord has done in our lives knowing that we never received the blessing. You see, “praising the Lord” is not just saying it but having fruit that comes from our lives from obedience and faithfulness (4-7). David understood this concept because he endured the struggles with Saul, the threats against his life, and yet through all of it, he never lost faith in the Lord. Saul, on the other hand, would lose everything on the battlefield (8-10).

Proverbs 4:1-9 – A Father’s Wise Instruction. 15th century English author John Heywood once said, “you can bring a horse to water but you can’t make it drink against its will”. In the same way, the father is relaying the need to get “wisdom” but it doesn’t mean that the son will follow the father’s guidance. “Getting wisdom” is a soft skill that is most often learned in hard times. Wisdom compares itself to no one but the Lord G-d. So when the child leaves the father’s presence, he/she must take the information use it as a litmus test against the world’s ways (1-5). Remember, “gaining wisdom and insight” has nothing to do with religion. Wisdom paves the way to a life free from fear (6-9).

Acts 3 – The Lame Beggar Healed. It was not uncommon for beggars to lay in the portico begging for money or scraps of food. So when Peter and John arrived and looked at the man, the man thought he’d receive something. Peter’s gift transcended anything the man could have possibly expected. After many years of begging, the man received strength in his ankles and legs so he started leaping with joy. This miracle shook the people because nothing like it had ever occurred since the time of Jesus (1-10). To the people, this was “astounding” but Peter gave glory to the Lord G-d citing references to the patriarchs and how the words of Moses applied to the Prophet Jesus (11-16). To act ignorance implied playing the part in a play without knowing it (17-24, Psalms 22, Shakespear – As You Like It, Act-II, Scene-VII, Lines 139-143). Peter’s words to the audience were filled with grace and mercy which would open the door for them to come to the Lord. Just as the children of the people who came out of Egypt entered the new land so the children of the prophets would be the progenitors of the promises of the prophets (25-26).

1 Samuel 10:17-27 – Saul Anointed King of Israel. The people gathered at Mizpah which was the “One place” to listen to Samuel. The Lord had watched over the nation from the time they left Egypt to that day in Mizpah. In times of warfare, He went before them into battle and brought them back again until wickedness found a place in the hearts of the people. The people unknowingly rejected the Lord’s leadership because of the impact of the children of Samuel and Eli on the community. Remember, it was not wrong to ask for a king, it was wrong to demand it just as their ancestors demanded water and food. Casting lots is like throwing dice with the outcome believed to be the “will of G-d”. The result of Samuel casting lots – the tribe of Benjamin was chosen. The next set would determine that family of Kish (17-19). Knowing what lay ahead, Saul hid among the baggage. Unfortunately, the Lord ratted him out and Saul was presented as the anointed King (20-24). Samuel then presented the people with the rights and duties of the king in writing. Just as it was the day the people left Egypt, some people disagreed for whatever reason with the chosen leader (25-27).