Showing posts from December, 2018

We are starting soon!!

Reading the New Testament is the best New Year's resolution you can make!! The benefits will exceed resolutions such as  losing weight,  going to the gym or getting more organized.  Getting to know Jesus better by reading His word has eternal benefits!! To sign up for the daily reminder, there are two steps.  First put your email in the box to the right.  Then confirm the email that will be sent to you from Feed Burner.  After confirming the email, you will get a daily reminder of the reading for the day.  I usually say something about the reading that stuck out to me.  I would love to hear  what stuck out to you!  Feel free to comment any time.  I promise I will respond.  In that way, we are reading together!! Happy New Year!! And happy reading!!

New Year Count Down!

Greetings, all you bloggers who are Walking With The Way! Thank you for visiting this blog and, for some, making it part of your daily routine the past year! I really hope God blessed your reading time with him! Wrapping up 2018 and turning toward the new year, what’s on your New Year’s resolution list? If you found the reading plan beneficial, there will be a new one starting January 1. The two chapter a day plan was the most popular plan for many, so I am going to return to that in 2019. I challenge you to ask someone you know to read along with you this time! The best way for people to get to know God, his personality, his plan, and his thoughts about us, is to read what he has to say about these things. You don’t have to “know it all” to share God with others. Just ask them to read it themselves, with you! I’m excited to get started again! I hope I hear from you on this site in the new year! Print out the new plan from the Spiritual Fervor tab.  Happy New Year an

Ch. 50~ We are done with Genesis!!

Well, we come to the close of Genesis and as usual, I have tons of questions!  Old man Jacob lived in Egypt 17 years before he died (47:28).  Why did the brothers think Joseph would be holding a grudge after 17 years?  After all, he had allowed them to prosper by buying land and grow in number.   It reminds me how some Christians know they are forgiven from their past sins, yet continue to carry the guilt for them for years to come.  They need to have another meeting with Jesus, like these brothers with Joseph, to be reminded that they have already been forgiven!  Stop carrying it around!! I have more questions; why did Joseph say “God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of lives.” (50:20)  Hadn’t the famine been over now for 12 years?  Why didn’t they go back to their land after the 7 year of drought?  What were they waiting for?  Also, it sounds like Joseph is dying at 110 years old, earlier than his older brothers.  How old we're thos

Ch. 49~ Shiloh

It’s interesting to read how Jacob foretells the future…..🤔, Did God show him a vision?  Did he feed him the words and Jacob didn’t really know what they meant?  Did Jacob feel bad saying one son would prosper and another would not?  Interesting….. Even though I have a lot of questions, I did see something clearly.  Jacob had an unshakeable faith that these things would come to pass for his down line, whether the predictions were good or bad.  Jacob was confident it would happen.  I also can see that Jacob didn’t just have earthly outcomes in mind but he had a heavenly perspective too. Jacob refers to a hope that goes beyond his posterity.  For example, when he is blessing Judah he says, “The scepter will not depart from Judah”, meaning the earthly kingship would pass down from generation to generation, but then he goes on to say, “until he to whom it belongs shall come and the obedience of the nations shall be his.” (49:10).   That is Jesus, the Messiah!!  That is when Juda

Ch. 48~ Fun fact!

I love when Bible’s have those tiny letters next to a verse that refer you to other verses.  When a verse is odd to me, I usually look the other verse up to get some understanding.  Case in point, I thought the last verse of this chapter was a little odd, like it was extra, random information. Why was it added?  “And to you I give one more ridge of land than to your brothers,” (48:22)  Well, the little letter referred me to look at John: “So he (Jesus) came to a town in Samaria called Sychar, near the plot of ground Jacob had given to his son Joseph.  Jacob’s well was there, and Jesus, tired as he was from the journey, sat down by the well.” (John 4:5-6)   That may not have explained why the two brothers got this extra piece of land, other than the fact that since Jacob himself had used it, it was very special to the Jewish people. That was fun for me to read! (I’m not kidding!) You see, the Samaritans were a mixed race, mostly with Jewish blood from the Ephraim and M

Ch. 47~ We are on a need to know basis.

There are so many instances where I wish I could have more details to a story in the Bible than what God gives.  Just today, I was having a conversation with my kids about Joseph, the earthly father of Jesus (since we are looking at manger scenes during this Christmas season).  My kids were wondering why the Bible doesn't mention Joseph after the incident with Jesus at the temple when he was 12 years old.  “Why didn’t the Bible writers include how or why he died at an early age?”, “What happened to him?  It would be nice to know!”  I was thinking in response to there questions, even though I too would love to know more, extra information would or could detract from the main point of the story, therefore it shouldn’t necessarily be included. God is keeping the main thing the main thing. So for today’s reading, I had questions after I read how the Egyptians became slaves themselves during the famine (47:21), the Israelites acquired property, and then, in time, the tables turn!

Ch. 46~ Heading to Egypt

Today we come to another genealogy record that I spent WAY to much time thinking about!! But pondering questions I have is fun for me and I usually learn new things! First question, what made Serah, Asher’s daughter, so special that she got mentioned as the only daughter in this huge list?  (Yet, she still doesn’t make ‘the count’. ) There were obviously other sisters.  They are not listed or counted as going down to Egypt. This is my speculation…all of Jacob’s children were now of marrying age.  The girls all got married to husbands in Canaan and moved to those clans.  Perhaps this particular sister never married.  She would still be in her father’s household and headed out with him. Second, did you notice that Benjamin, the “boy” that Judah was protecting in ch.44 has 10 sons?? What’s up with that??? How old was that “boy”?  One commentary stated that Benjamin was about 24 when he entered Egypt and of those sons, some may have been born before entering Egypt and some after.

Ch. 45~ God works for the good.

Hind sight is always 20/20, right?!  It’s when we look back on life that we can see how God’s hand was moving all the parts.  Wouldn’t you agree? Joseph was able to see how God used the bad times (being rejected by his brothers, sold as a slave, accused falsely of attempted rape, and living in prison more than two years) to lead him to say, “It was to save lives that God sent me ahead of you.” (45:5) It was sweet of God to give Joseph a ‘heads up’ on how he was going to work it all out.  Remember, he gave Joseph those dreams way back when he was 17 years old, before all the bad started.  I bet Joseph clung to those dreams as he spent day after day in prison.   God gives us a heads up as well! We are able to see how God operates by reading His word.  We get to read this story of Joseph, we also get to read how he gave the same promise to the Israelites.  They were in Babylon as a punishment for their disobedience (maybe around 900 years after the Exodus), when God sends them a

Ch. 44~ True devotion

What the heck?!  I just got finished saying, yesterday, that I admired Joseph for his devotion to the one true God, Yahweh. Then, today, I read he has a silver cup for divination (44:5)?!?!  What’s up with that??  God doesn’t like divination! (Deuteronomy 18: 9-10) Well, I felt a little better when I read this commentary, “Did Joseph really practice divination?  Probably not- he would have no desire or need to because of his relationship with God.  This statement was probably part of the test to emphasize how important the cup was.”   OK, I can go with that…I would agree because, if you remember, he married into a family who’s patriarch was a priest of the sun.  So, Joseph had the appearance of being a “spiritual” leader who appeared to be doing all the things a pagan spiritual leader would be doing.  That explains his statement, “Don’t you know that a man like me can find things out by divination?” (44:16)  He says “a man like me” not, “me”. On another note, isn’t it inter

Ch. 43~ Joseph shares his faith.

I have to say I am admiring Joseph the more I read about him.  At first, I thought he was arrogant when he was young, flaunting his dreams to his brothers.  Then, I thought he was a victim of circumstances, first being sold to slavery and then being thrown in prison.  I thought God was blessing him in everything he did, just so that God could accomplish his divine plan of bringing Israel to Egypt. Now, however, like I mentioned the other day, I believe Joseph fully believed in the God of his father and shared stories of the one true God (Yahweh) with everyone close to him.  I mentioned the other day how I believe he shared Yahweh with his pagan wife in ch. 41.  Today we have another example~ Joseph shared Yahweh with his steward!  We know that by what the steward said, “Don’t be afraid. Your God, the God of your father, has given you treasure in your sacks.” (43:23) Again, even though Joseph is in a pagan culture, he is not afraid  to share Yahweh with everyone he knows. I im

Ch. 42~Go for healing sooner than later!

Boy, this family! The deception continues! Jacob (the deceiver) is deceived by his sons regarding the disappearance of Joseph (ch 37) and now Joseph is deceiving his brothers!  It’s true in this case, ‘what goes around comes around’!  Now these brothers…I’m trying to keep their stories straight.  I need a quick review: Reuben (1st born) sleeps with his dad’s concubine (35:22), yet tries to save Joseph from being killed by his bothers and now is willing to sacrifice his own boys as a pledge to keep Benjamin safe. (42:37) Simon (2nd born) and Levi (3rd born) were the two who killed every male in Shechem and they felt righteous about it! (34:31)  It’s Simon who Joseph chooses to keep in Egypt while his brothers go back home (42:24). Judah (4th born) moved away from his family, had three sons, two who died and then he had twins with his daughter-in-law.  He must have moved back home recently, maybe due to the famine. We don’t hear much about Issachar, Zebulun, Dan, Naphtali, Gad

Ch. 41~ Keep teaching your kids truth regardless of the culture.

My mouth dropped when I read “Pharaoh gave Joseph the name Zaphenath-Paneah and gave him Asenath, daughter of Potiphera” (41:45) Then I closed my mouth when I realized it was Poti phera not Poti phar ~ two different guys.  So, who was Potiphera the priest of On?  Well, On was a city known for worshipping the sun.  Therefore it is assumed that Potiphera was a priest of the sun.   Pharaoh reminds me of people today who don’t have a clue about spiritual matters.  They tend to clump ‘spiritual people’ together, regardless of what is being worshiped.  Jacob reminds Pharaoh, there is one true God, “I cannot do it (interpret the dream), but God will give Pharaoh the answer he desires.” (41:16)  Pharaoh sees that Jacob is wise and even says, “Can we find anyone like this man, one in whom is the spirit of God?” (41:38), But then, Joseph’s devotion to God gets muddled in Pharaoh’s mind with other spiritual people he knows.  It’s like he’s thinking, “Hey, Joe is spiritual, I’ll give

Ch. 40~ A little kindness can go a long way!

Hey, did you notice who assigned Joseph to attend to the cupbearer and baker?!  It was “the captain of the guard”! (40:4)  That means it was Potiphar!  I assumed it was the prison warden who “paid no attention to anything under Joseph’s care” (39:23), that had put Joseph in charge of the other prisoners, but it wasn’t! That means Potiphar, who at first “burned with anger” when he thought Joseph went for his wife, still kept tabs on Joseph.  He was still aware that Joseph had success in everything he did.  Perhaps Potiphar still trusted Joseph enough to keep his eye on the two men, Pharaoh (the king), did not trust.   Potiphar may have been mad at first with Joseph, but he wasn’t stupid!  He recognized that the Lord was with Joseph (39:3).  He couldn’t let Joseph out of prison, that wouldn’t look good for the honor of his wife, but he could make the best of a bad situation for Joseph.  I’m just speculating, but, it is interesting, don’t you think, that it was Potiphar himself,

Ch. 39~ Attitude is a choice.

Annually, I give a presentation to the 5th and 6th grades at a small Christian school, where all my kids attended.  I am the nurse who comes to talk to them about how their bodies will be changing in the next few years.  In the past I have also visited the junior high students, but for their talk, I kick it up a notch with discussions of STD’s and unplanned pregnancies that can occur in sex outside of marriage.  In the course of the talk we discuss how to “practice” ways of getting out of compromising situations or how to not get into one in the first place.   One of the very practical steps I suggest is to be like Joseph (mind you this is a Christian school, so they know the story and nod with understanding).  “If you find yourself in a situation that makes you feel uncomfortable or you just know you shouldn’t be there…!!  It’s OK to get up and run!”  I usually use a power point when I talk with them so I am always sure to include some sort of visual.   I truly believ

Ch. 38~ God loves his own.

Tamar was a Canaanite.  She was not from the people that Isaach and Rebekah wanted for Jacob.  Apparently, Jacob and Leah didn’t care as much where their children went to find spouses.  As a result, Judah’s first two sons weren’t raised in a ‘one God’ home, so they didn’t turn out so good (38:7 & 10). But Tamar….there must have been something special about her.  Perhaps in her family there was some godly teaching and she adhered to it, or maybe when she was exposed to the God of Abraham through things she may of heard while with Er and Onan; either way, she believed it!  Judah even declared as much when he said, “She is more righteous than I.” (38:26). And, accordingly, she was “adopted” into the Jewish family tree, and raised her boys with that faith in the one true God. Galatians 3:7 says, “Understand, then, that those who have faith are children of Abraham.”  God is the same today as he was back then.  He will bring anyone into his family that has faith in Him, through

Genesis 37~ Something good's coming!

Boy!  When you consider the deceiving Jacob did in his youth, he sure is getting a taste of his own medicine in this chapter!  Perhaps his boys learned from example.  They deceived the deceiver!  It’s sad how some traits are passed on to the next generation even when we try to improve in an area.😣  It was also very sad to read, “ ‘I will continue to mourn until I join my son in the grave.’ So his father wept for him.” (37:35) Just as I was feeling the heaviness of that, I got excited for what I knew was going to happen when I read, “the Mediates sold Joseph in Egypt!”  I literally thought what Jimmy Cricket says in Disney’s Peter Pan ride, “Here we gooooo!”  This story is going to get exciting, as I know what ultimately occurs from this deception!  Spoiler alert; Joseph goes to Egypt, his family ends up there too, they all end up in slavery, and at the end of that time period (400 yrs.) the Passover is instituted, which is foreshadowing to Christ!! So, God allowed this decep

Genesis 36~ Oholibamah

So, I am one of those geeks who actually read each name listed in the genealogies of the Bible.  Usually I get a kick out of a name or two.  This time I had to giggle at the name Oholibamah.  I don’t know why, just did. Maybe because of all the things that rhyme with “bamah”. Anyway, about that genealogy….Why does Moses (who is attributed with writing Genesis) go into such detail on Esau’s decedents?  One commentary says, “As Abraham’s first grandson, he deserves a place in the Jewish records”   Sadly though, because he married “pagan” women, the genealogy also shows how the enemy nation to Israel came about.  “Esau, the father of the Edomites”, (Gen. 36:43) settled south east of the Dead Sea.  Instead of helping their blood relatives through the centuries, they were a constant source of harassment. Well….that doesn’t go well for them.  The book of Obadiah (the shortest book in the Old Testament) tells what happens to them. 😳 God speaks through his prophet and gives his fina

Genesis 35~ Everybody needs to make their own choice.

So this is another weird chapter for me to process!  Why is the death of Deborah, Rebekah’s nurse, recorded, but not Rebekah’s death?  And why on earth does Reuben sleep with one of his step moms?  There’s a lot for me to ponder! I read some commentaries on these points, so I’ll try to give you the short version. First, regarding the death of the nurse; there are several theories.   1.) Rebekah died some time ago and her nurse, who would be loyal to Jacob, went with him on his travels instead of staying with Isaac.  This old, wise woman could have become an integral part of Jacob’s life, therefore he mourned heavily when she died.  (Allom Bakuth means Oak of Weeping.) 2.) Some think Rebekah also died at the same time as the nurse because “Oak of Weeping” is actually written in plural form indicating it was double mourning.  Theories are also given as to why the burial of Rebekah needed to remain secret.  These are speculations, so I’m not going to bother to list them.

Genesis 34~ God deals with sin!

As much as I would like to make Shechem a victim of “love at first sight” and think that this could have been a sweet, Hollywood type, love story~ it’s not!  Shechem would have seen that Dinah, as she was out visiting the town ladies, was not dressed as a present woman.  This was not a case of mistaken identity!  You can bet that Leah, being from a very wealthy clan, dressed her daughter to the 9’s and did not send her out alone!  So, Shechem was a spoiled man who took what he wanted without a pre-thought to the consequences that he should and would have been well aware of!  In addition, the word “rape” implies this was not a consensual act.  So, in reality, nothing is sweet about this story! So, what is the point of the story?  Why did God want it to be included in Genesis?  Well, one point I see highlights the truth of Exodus 34:7, “He does not leave the guilty unpunished; he punishes the children and their children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation.

Genesis 33~ Joyful reunions!

I went to a funeral yesterday of a young man who had one brother.  The pictures of his life that played out before us consisted of the two brothers side by side on trips, in sports and numerous family functions. I can imagine that if there was a slide show of Esau and Jacob as young boys, it would be similar to the above family.  Even though their preferences grew to be different when they were older (25:27), they were still raised together by a mom and dad who loved them dearly.   So, I absolutely loved reading, “But Esau ran to meet Jacob and embraced him; he threw his arms around his neck and kissed him.  And they wept.” (33:4)  Time had worked to make Esau focus on the good times rather than the bad that had occurred between the two. Time also helped with Jacob’s heart, changing from “deceiver” (Jacob) to “contender with God” (Israel).  It seems when you get right with God, you can get right with others. Fortunately for the two boys I mentioned earlier, they were/are

Genesis 32~ Jacob's heart is changing.

What did you think of the first sentence of our reading today? “Jacob also went on his way, and the angels of God met him.  When Jacob saw them, he said, “This is the camp of God!  So he named the place Mahandim.” (32:1-2) What was that? Angels in the camp?….Well, I have a theory!  I think God was giving Jacob proof he made the right decision. We just got finished reading in the chapter before, that Laban (who owned little gods) made his oath to Jacob on the name of the God of Abraham, Nahor and Terah (31:53).  Laban had an idea of who the true God was.  It had had been passed on from his father and grandfather, but…he was getting off on his theology, as evidenced by the little gods.   Jacob on the other hand is starting to show some clarity in his thinking.  He took his oath in the ‘name of the Fear of his father Isaac.” (31:53).  He is realizing who the true God is and how God had been with him during the difficult 20 years with Laban. So now, Laban and Jacob are pa

Genesis 31~ "God Moments"

I have told my girls, “Don’t journal sad things in your life. You don’t need help remembering those!  Journal the God moments!”  Those are worthy of remembering!!  I think it’s our nature to remember bad times easier than the good.  Jacob clearly remembered all the bad of his past 20 years living in Paddan Aram!  “The heat consumed me in the daytime and the cold at night, and sleep fled form my eyes.  It was like this for the 20 years I was in your household.” (Gen. 31:40-41) However, look what God said to Jacob, “I am the God of Bethel”  (31:13).  It’s like he was saying, “Remember that great time we had together.  Remember what I said?”  Twenty years later, Jacob may have forgotten that “mountain high” experience (dream) he had, but God had not.  That was a “God moment” in Jacob’s life and God himself was reminding Jacob of it! It’s good to be reminded of those times where God “met you” in a time of crisis, sadness, happiness, ect.  Or where he clearly spoke to you thro