Judges 13-19~ This reading definitely has some important take-aways!!

Again, I found myself wondering what I can get out of this terribly sad reading we are doing in Judges.  I was sad reading about Sampson (ch. 16), but my stomach turned reading chapter 19!  In fact, my 8-year-old son, who was sitting across the room from me when I was reading said, "What are you doing with your face, Mom?"  I laughed when I realized he had looked at me right when my face was twisted with horror as I read about the poor concubine. I simply said, "I don't like what I am reading!" Thankfully, he didn't ask what I was reading specifically,....yet he knew it was from the Bible. 😬😳 I wonder what that little guy thought of that answer?!... I should probably talk to him about it later.  But, at the time, I couldn't respond with much more.....I wouldn't have been able to explain the Bible right then and there for him...I needed time to process...what am I reading?... and why is this in the Bible?!! Well, I have processed now, and this

Judges 6 - 12- God is faithful even when our faith falters!

I don't know about this past week's just 7 chapters we read about 8 leaders of Israel...who weren't the stellar examples of godly leadership for the "chosen people of God"! To be honest, I was left feeling uneasy about how the country was going (a little like how I feel these days in our own county). Even Gideon, who I remember as being one of the "heroes of the faith" mentioned in Hebrews (ch. 11), didn't seem like a hero I would encourage my boys to emulate. So....what can I get out of this reading?  How is this part of scripture "God-breathed and useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work." (2 Tim. 3:16-17)? Humm...well, Gideon might not be the picture of faith, since he faltered several times,.....but we can certainly learn a lot about God through Gideon's faltering faith!   God is faithful even when our faith f

Joshua 23-Judeges 5- It all points to Jesus!

Monday we read Joshua exhort the people, "So be very careful to love the Lord your God." (23:11) Then through the rest of Joshua he continues to warn and plead with the Israelites to "Yield their hearts to God."  As I was reading Joshua, I was kind'a surprised that he didn't have a lot of hope for these people to remain faithful. After all, he had spent the last years of his life on the battlefield with the men of Israel who continually rallied to battle to defeat and conquer the people in their promised land.    Yet, Joshua was right,  as soon as the exhortations were out of his mouth he states, "You are not able to serve the Lord.  He is a holy God, he is a jealous God." (24:19) We saw the truth in that statement as soon as we started to read Judges!  Immediately, in chapter 3, we start to see the pattern of the people: live in peace --> sin --> fall into captivity --> moan for help --> God rescues --> peace again comes, but the pa

Joshua 16-22- Inquire of the Lord while you wait!

After reading how the land was divided between the tribes in this week's reading, I bet some of you were thinking...."Do I really need to read all these names? I can't find a lot of practical application for myself in this reading, do I really need to keep reading?....." Come on, be honest, did you have any of those thoughts?  Well, I have a challenge for you! If you feel you got nothing out of the reading take a look again, looking for these subjects: Thoughts on women's rights (chapter 17)?   An acknowledgment for the need for capital punishment yet  there is a time for not implementing capital punishment (chapter 19)? Did you notice to whom the cities of refuge were given? I thought it was interesting that the one's designate to be the priests (the intercessor between the people and God) would be the ones to receive those who needed mercy. Maybe God felt they were the best equipped to deal wtih the emotions involved in those cases, who knows, I jus

Joshua 9-15- Boy, that was a lot of killing!😧

This week we read how Joshua, along with all the Israelites, engaged in the conquest and "moving in" to the territory that made up "the Promised Land". If one just skims over these chapters, it can leave a feeling of, 😱"Ugg!  How horrific!"  The killing of "all who had breath" (10:40)- that sounds barbaric and merciless by today's standards! What kind of God do we serve who would be so harsh?!😦 Yet, while I was reading, a verse came to me that I remember reading a while back.  I'm so glad God brought it back to the forefront of my mind as I read these chapters!   I remember a scene in Genesis where God was talking with Abraham.  Abraham is at a scenic lookout point, a view that eventual became what we know today as Israel.  God and Abraham just had an exchange about the promise of a son, a promised land, and an explanation of the timing of those events.   In fact, God told Abraham exactly what would happen over the next 400 years!

Joshua 2-8 - God hasn't changed a bit!

If you have been reading along with me for any length of time, you may have heard me say that everything in the Old Testament points to Jesus.  Did you see any of that in this week's reading? Once again, I did! I read one commentary that pointed out how Joshua himself was a "Christ-like" figure.  Joshua in Hebrew means Savior and we read how he was the one designated to deliver the Israelites to the Promised Land.  In the same way,  the name Jesus means Savior in Greek and we know that he is the one who will deliver his people to the heavenly Promised Land. I can say more on this foreshadowing to Christ, but to be honest, my attention was caught more in how God expects the same from us today as he did of his true followers back in the time of Joshua. While I was reading about Rehab in chapter 2, I thought, "Boy, God does not change! (Hebrews 13:8). He is always looking for a heart that is open to him and when he finds it, He blesses that person. Rehab is a perf

Deuteronomy 29 - Joshua 1- God is our Rock, our reason to be strong and courageous!

I have to say, I really enjoyed reading Deuteronomy! I hope you did too! This week I was reminded: 1.  The only way to do things is God's way!  We can not create our own way of doing things and think we will get to heaven that way.  It's God's way or no way (Deut. 29:20)!  Jesus reiterates that idea when he says, "No one comes to the Father except through me."(John 14:6). There is just one way, God's way! 2. I saw foreshadowing in Deut. 30:4, "Even if you have been banished to the most distant land under the heavens, from there the Lord your God will gather you and bring you back." to the words Jesus says in Matthew 24:3 when he says he will send his angels to "gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other."  This is going to happen, people! I can't wait!  Are you excited for that day? 3. I saw the first reference to God being our Rock in Deut.32.  Moses makes that reference 7x's in the s