1/4 – Gen. 8:1-10:32 – Andrew

Genesis 8:1-10:32  There are no heroes

I don’t think the way we teach the Bible to children is all that helpful.  Many people were taught that the people in the Bible were heroes of the faith.  But, when you actually read about these heroes, you realize that they were usually pretty bad people.  This throws modern people for a loop–if the people in the Bible are supposed to be heroes, then why are they such bad people?

Here’s another way to look at it, however: what if the point is not that the people in the Bible are all that great–what if the point is that God uses flawed people for his good purposes?  “God writes straight with crooked lines.”

And, don’t worry if the Flood story seems strange–it is strange.  Focus on what the story is telling us….

8:2 – In Genesis 1, God is pictured as shutting up the waters of chaos and giving order to a disordered universe.  In the Flood story, God is unmaking what he’s made, and the waters of chaos are allowed to rush back in.  But then, God pushes the waters back again, and dry land appears again.  One of the things the Noah story is about is the promise that God will never destroy the world out of anger, no matter how much we might deserve it.

9:3-5 – Originally, God’s intention was that humans be vegetarians, but here, God gives them animals to eat.

9:6 – Killing a human is forbidden because humanity bears the image of God.  Human life’s sacred.

9:20-9:27 – Several things are going on here.  First, though Noah is a good man, he’s not perfect, as this bizarre episode shows.  Whatever happens in the tent, it’s not a good thing.  Also, note that sin can’t be washed away by a flood, because sin is in every human heart, even the so-called good people, like Noah.

–AF

January 4 – Daily Notes – Amanda

Genesis 8:1-10:32:

  • 6-12 – Noah and his family must have been so eager to get off the boat.
  • 21-22 – Note that God does not say he won’t curse the ground because humans had learned their lesson. He recognizes that humans are incapable of living righteously but vows not to destroy them anyway.
  • 8-17 – This covenant is the only one established where nothing is required of humans. God simply makes a covenant not to flood the earth again and destroy everyone and humans just receive the blessing of that. The rainbow is our reminder of this covenant.
  • Imagine how scary it would have been the first time it started raining again after Noah and his family got off the ark. They would really have to lean into their belief in God’s faithfulness and the covenant he made with them.
  • 20-27 – Ham sins by not respecting his father and looking at him exposed while Shem and Japheth respect Noah even in his own sin of drunkenness. The Canaanites remain enemies of Israel throughout Scripture.
  • 15-20 – All tribes listed here were enemies of Israel at one time or another.

Matthew 4:12-25:

  • 12-16 – Matthew mentions many of the prophecies Jesus fulfills. People in darkness seeing a great light refers to people meeting Jesus, the light of the world.
  • 17 – John the Baptist’s message was about repentance. Though he was now in jail, he truly had “prepared the way” for Jesus to preach his own message of repentance.
  • 18-22 – Matthew makes no indication of why these men choose to leave everything and follow Jesus. The phrase “fishers of men” simply means that they will now set their sights on bringing people into Jesus’ message.

Psalm 4:1-8:

  • 5-8 – These verses hit hard the idea that we are tempted to trust in many other things but our true rest and comfort come only from God.

Proverbs 1:20-23:

  • These verses describe wisdom as something easily attainable and ready for the taking. It presents itself to us and we only need to choose to accept it.