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Showing posts from November, 2021

bible reading dec 1-2

Bible reading for December 1 -- 2  Dec 1 -- Micah 6 and Luke 15 Dec 2 -- Micah 7 and Luke 16 ================ "He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?" (Micah 6:8)  IT'S REALLY QUITE SIMPLE (ch 6). Don't you find it helpful when the Lord himself summarizes things for us? For example, Jesus summed up the law of God with, "love God with all your heart..." and "love your neighbor as yourself" (Matt 22:36-40). Here we have, "Do justice... love kindness... walk humbly with God" (v 8). How straightforward! This chapter begins with the Lord asking "what have I done to you"? That is, what fault have you found in me, what grievance do you have against me? (Cf Jer 2:5; Isa 43:22; Mal 1:13) Though Christians rarely vocalize their disappointment with God, it often becomes the reason for their backsliding. ( I find that it is best

bible reading nov 29-30

  Bible reading for November 29 -- 30 Nov 29 -- Micah 4 and Luke 13 Nov 30 -- Micah 5 and Luke 14 ================ "...many nations shall come, and say: 'Come, let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob, that he may teach us his ways and that we may walk in his paths.' For out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem." (Micah 4:2)   A NEW WORLD COMING (ch 4). Judah would suffer humiliation during the Assyrian invasion (5:5-6) and then be exiled later to Babylon (4:10), but these prophecies of Micah shine a light of hope from a future world where the nations would gather to Mount Zion to learn the ways of the Lord (vv 1-2). It will be a time of universal peace, with swords being made into plowshares (vv 3-4). Israel will be consecrated to the service of the Lord: "For all the peoples walk each in the name of its god, but we will walk in the name of the LORD our God forever and ever" (v 5). The Lo

bible reading thanksgiving week

Bible reading for week Nov 22 -- 28 Nov 22 -- Jonah 1 and Luke 6 Nov 23 -- Jonah 2 and Luke 7 Nov 24 -- Jonah 3 and Luke 8 Nov 25 -- Jonah 4 and Luke 9 Nov 26 -- Micah 1 and Luke 10 Nov 27 -- Micah 2 and Luke 11 Nov 28 -- Micah 3 and Luke 12 Dear friends, our family will be gathering together this week to give thanks, and I'll have less time to write. (But this means more time to hold our newest grandchild!) So, I'm doing one Bible reading post for the week. We have so much to give thanks for! "Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits, who forgives all your iniquity, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy, who satisfies you with good so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's" (Psalm 103:2-5). May you and yours have a blessed Thanksgiving time.   --Sandy  ================ "And should not I pity Nineveh, that great city, in which there are more than 120,000 persons who

bible reading nov 19-21

Bible reading for weekend Nov 19 -- 21 Nov 19 -- Amos 8 and Luke 3 Nov 20 -- Amos 9 and Luke 4 Nov 21 -- Obadiah and Luke 5 ================ "In that day I will raise up the booth of David that is fallen and repair its breaches, and raise up its ruins and rebuild it as in the days of old..."  (Amos 9:11)  THE HARVEST HAS COME (ch 8). There's a wordplay in the first two verses: "summer fruit" (Heb., qayits ) and "the end" (Heb., qets ). It's an illustration that the summer has ended and the harvest -- not what they expected -- was upon them (cf Jer 8:20). Their life of affluence and leisure was about to come to an end. At the fall of Samaria (capital of Israel) in 722 BC, the people would be exiled and scattered among the other nations. They would experience a "famine" of God's word in that God's prophets would no longer come to them (like Ezekiel did for the Jews in Babylon) nor would they have the strong group identity that come

bible reading nov 17-18

Bible reading for Nov 17 -- 18 Nov 17 -- Amos 6 and Luke 1:39-80 Nov 18 -- Amos 7 and Luke 2 ================ "Then the Lord said, 'Behold, I am setting a plumb line in the midst of my people Israel; I will never again pass by them...'" (Amos 7:8)  THE LEISURE CLASS (ch 6). It seems Amos' generation had the same mindset as our advertisers today, that is, "You deserve the best!" Note how the people of Israel are described: idle, taking it easy, self-secure, partying, and enjoying the best beauty products (vv 1-7). This sinful lifestyle was rooted in pride (v 8) and injustice (v 12). Not all prosperity is bad, for example, we may enjoy what God gives when it is something permissible, prayed about, and used with gratitude and humility (2 Tim 4:4-5). But much luxury can come at the cost of spiritual compromise (idolatry), self-indulgence, and from taking advantage of vulnerable people (injustice).  CANCELLING AMOS (ch 7). In compassion and mercy, Amos inte

bible reading nov 15-16

  Bible reading for Nov 15 -- 16 Nov 15 -- Amos 4 and Psalms 148-150 Nov 16 -- Amos 5 and Luke 1:1-38 ================ "Take away from me the noise of your songs; to the melody of your harps I will not listen. But let justice roll down like waters, and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream." (Amos 5:23-24)   PREPARE TO MEET YOUR GOD (ch 4).  Amos calls out the women for self-indulgence and all the people for their idolatry (vv 1-5). The Lord brought various judgments upon the nation in the forms of drought, famine, blight, mildew, and pestilence. "Yet you did not return to me," says the Lord repeatedly. "Therefore thus I will do to you, O Israel; because I will do this to you, prepare to meet your God, O Israel!" (v 12) LET JUSTICE ROLL DOWN (ch 5). Amos calls the people to do a 180: "Hate evil, and love good, and establish justice in the gate; it may be that the LORD, the God of hosts, will be gracious to the remnant of Joseph." The people

bible reading nov 12-14

Bible reading for weekend Nov 12 -- 14 Nov 11 -- Amos 1 and Psalm 144 Nov 12 -- Amos 2 and Psalm 145 Nov 13 -- Amos 3 and Psalms 146-147  ================ "'I will strike the winter house along with the summer house, and the houses of ivory shall perish, and the great houses shall come to an end,' declares the LORD." (Amos 3:15).   FOR THREE TRANSGRESSIONS, AND FOUR (ch 1-2) . Amos (along with his contemporary, Isaiah) was one of the earliest writing prophets in Israel. It was an affluent time in both Judah and Israel (ca 790-750 BC), but there was also violence and oppression. Border conflicts among the nearby nations resulted in land seizure, enslavement, and unjust treatment of prisoners. Each of these nations, along with Judah and Israel, are called out. "For three transgressions, and four..." was a poetic way of saying, "I've got three things against you... no, wait, make that four." In other words, God had a list of their sins and it was

bible reading nov 10-11

Bible reading for Nov 10 -- 11 Nov 10 -- Joel 2 and Psalm 142 Nov 11 -- Joel 3 and Psalm 143  ================   "And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, and your young men shall see visions. Even on the male and female servants in those days I will pour out my Spirit. " (Joel 2:28-29)   REPENTANCE, AND OUTPOURING OF THE SPIRIT (ch 2). The pestilence is like the invasion of a mighty locust army (vv 1-11; cf Rev 9). Hosea calls for repentance from the people -- all people and all ages (vv 12-17). The Lord promises restoration (vv 18-27), and the coming age (the church age and beyond) would be marked by the Holy Spirit indwelling all believers, not just kings and prophets (vv 28-32; cf Acts 2). Following this outpouring would be another Day of the Lord, the final one, "great and awesome" (v 31; cf Matt 24; 1 Thess 5:2-3). And in preparation for that

bible reading nov 8-9

Bible reading for Nov 8 -- 9  Nov 8 -- Hosea 14 and Psalm 139 Nov 9 -- Joel 1 and Psalms 140-141  ================ "Whoever is wise, let him understand these things; whoever is discerning, let him know them; for the ways of the LORD are right, and the upright walk in them, but transgressors stumble in them." (Hosea 14:9)  ONE LAST APPEAL (Hos 14). "Return, O Israel, to the LORD your God..." (v 1). Hosea calls upon the nation to seek from God the forgiveness and healing that comes only from the Lord. They are to abandon their trust in idols and in other nations, and to find shelter in the Lord. God promises: "I will heal their apostasy; I will love them freely, for my anger has turned from them. I will be like the dew to Israel..." (vv 4-5). They will blossom, and take root, and spread out, and be beautiful, and will flourish, and bear fruit (vv 5-7). And this is true of believers both then and now: "It is I who answer and look after you. I am like an

bible reading nov 5-7

Bible reading for weekend Nov 5 -- 7  Nov 5 -- Hosea 11 and Psalms 132-134 Nov 6 -- Hosea 12 and Psalms 135-136 Nov 7 -- Hosea 13 and Psalms 137-138 ================ "I led them with cords of kindness, with the bands of love, and I became to them as one who eases the yoke on their jaws, and I bent down to them and fed them." (Hosea 11:4)  GOD'S TENDERNESS (ch 11). What beautiful pictures of God's care we see here! Israel is a beloved child, and a son (v 1). Jesus -- God's beloved Son (Matt 3:17) -- in his own life recapitulates the history of Israel, going to Egypt (Matt 2:15) and being tried for a period of forty days in the wilderness (Matt 4:2). God is the Father who taught Israel to walk, and he is the one who held them and healed them, though they did not know it (v 3). Like a kind farmer he cared for them as a cherished animal (v 4). He does not rejoice to bring judgment upon them (vv 7-8), for God's holiness is not merely manifest in judgment but also

bible reading nov 3-4

Bible reading for weekend Nov 3 -- 4  Nov 3 -- Hosea 9 and Psalms 126-128 Nov 4 -- Hosea 10 and Psalms 129-131 ================ "Sow for yourselves righteousness; reap steadfast love; break up your fallow ground, for it is the time to seek the LORD, that he may come and rain righteousness upon you." (Hosea 10:12)  GOOD-BYE, GOOD TIMES (ch 9). "The days of recompense have come" (v 7). All the good things in life that Israel pursued apart from God will be taken from them. There is a glory for humanity, but it is the glory of knowing God as Maker, Redeemer, and Provider of every good thing. What glory Israel had at that time would "fly away like a bird" (v 11). The city of Gilgal (v 15) was party-central for the nation's idolatrous activity (cf 4:13-15). The principle here is that if you pursue happiness apart from God you will ultimately lose both happiness and God, too. Consider these two quotes from C. S. Lewis: “God cannot give us a happiness and pea