February 23 – Daily Notes – Amanda

Ingrid Bergman

Is that a habit? Get it!?! Because she’s wearing a…oh never mind. Jesus had a habit that he was known for. This habit is mentioned frequently throughout the Gospels and it seemed to be a big part of who he was. Jesus went off by himself to pray. When things were getting rowdy or something major had just happened, Jesus didn’t panic, run away, or take charge, he went to pray. What’s your habit?

Leviticus 14:1-57:

  • 21 – Note that modifications were made for those who were poor, but everyone still had to offer something.
  • 34 – Why would God put leprous disease in an Israelites house if it is unclean? Remember, being unclean wasn’t necessarily because you had sinned and it wasn’t sinful to be unclean.
  • The priests must have been extremely busy with leprosy cases considering all the checks and double-checks they had to perform.

Mark 6:30-56:

  • 34 – “Sheep without a shepherd” – like any of us before we find Christ.
  • 44 – Five thousand men means there were at least as many women and children.
  • 46 – Jesus is frequently described as going off by himself to pray. This seems to be how he regroups and reconnects after strenuous teaching or healings.
  • 52 – Once again we see someone’s heart hardened. It does not mention who did the hardening this time. When our hearts are hardened we are unable to recognize God’s work.

Psalm 40:1-10:

  • This Psalm is helpful when we need restoration.
  • Encouragement to share the work God has done in your life, “I have not hidden your deliverance”, “I have spoken of your faithfulness.”

Proverbs 10:11-12:

  • The difference in result when our words are righteous and when they’re wicked.

January 27 – Daily Notes – Amanda

 

selfish

Well, actually, today’s Proverb would disagree with this line of thinking. Today’s Proverb instructs us not to share – our spouse that is. Today’s Proverb teaches us not to share spouses. This sounds like a pretty obvious point, but clearly it’s been a problem since at least Solomon’s days – heck, at least Abraham’s. Remember in Genesis when he lied and said Sarah was his sister?

Exodus 4:1-5:21:

  • 1-9 – God performs a few smaller miracles to prove to Moses his power and that he was with him.
  • 10-17. Moses continues to balk at the idea of confronting the Pharaoh. God rebuts his excuse of not being eloquent by explaining that God made his mouth and can make it do whatever he wants. Moses continues to make excuses so God allows Aaron, his brother, to accompany Moses.
  • 21-23 – These verses are a quick summary of what is about to go down through the plagues, hardening of Pharaoh’s heart, and Passover.
  • 24-26 – Though a confusing and disturbing story, it seems that Moses had not fulfilled the Lord’s command that all Israelite males be circumcised. In positions of leadership, we are held to a higher standard of faithfulness and Moses wasn’t meeting the minimum. Zipporah’s quick thinking resolves the issue and ends the conflict.
  • 29-31 – Moses and Aaron had to first get the Israelites on board before they confronted the Egyptians.
  • 1-21 – Moses and Aaron’s initial presence and request is actually detrimental to the Israelites as Pharaoh, in his anger, makes their work even harder on them.

Matthew 18:1-22:

  • 1-6 – Jesus, once again, flips culture on its head. It is not a great ruler or the most faithful disciple who Jesus calls the greatest. It is a weak, vulnerable child. Jesus explains that causing a child to sin is an error deserving death. We must responsibly care for those with whom we’ve been entrusted.
  • 7-9 – Temptations are unavoidable because there is evil in the world. This makes it clear how detestable it is to tempt someone else and possibly cause them to sin. And it explains the lengths to which we should go, though somewhat hyperbolic, if something causes us to sin.
  • 10-14 – This is similar to the parable of the Prodigal Son. When a sinner returns it should be the case that both God and the righteous rejoice. Instead, we often wonder why we, the faithful, don’t get more celebration. This reminds us that we’re all sinners.
  • 15-17 – This is the proper way to call out a believer for sins. All should be done in love.
  • 21-22 – Peter comes to Jesus looking for a limit. Jesus explains that grace should be limitless.

Psalm 22:19-31:

  • This portion of the psalm shows how our lives should work: God gives us a variety of blessings and we praise him. David is a great example to us of how to be faithful in praise as we receive God’s continual blessings.

Proverbs 5:15-21:

  • Key point – be faithful to your spouse and what you’ve been given. It sounds like it’s teaching people not to share, but this is one area where that’s legitimate advice.

January 24 – Daily Notes – Amanda

Genesis 48:1-49:33:

  • 8-11 – Jacob expresses his excitement and gratitude for not only seeing his long-lost son again, but also for getting to meet his grandchildren.
  • 14-22 – In an interesting twist, like in his own life, Jacob assures that the younger brother receives the greater blessing. Manasseh was the older brother, but Jacob blesses his Ephraim with carrying on the line of Israelites.
  • 21 – Jacob assures Joseph that his family will not always remain in Egypt, but will return to the land God gave them. This won’t happen for a while, but will happen.
  • 1-28 – Jacob, before dying, offers specific blessings to each of his sons. Though he blesses the actual sons, their blessings come to, in part, define the tribes they will become.

Matthew 15:29-16:12:

  • 29-31 – We often want to receive recognition for the good things we do. Jesus did miracles in order to give God glory. When we recognize where our strength and abilities come from, it is easier to give God the glory since it is his already.
  • 32-39 – A very similar story to the feeding of the 5,000. It would seem that the disciples should have assumed Jesus would perform another miracle and yet they still seem to look for logical solutions from him.
  • 1-4 – The religious leaders ask Jesus for a sign to prove his identity even though he has just healed, exorcised, and performed a variety of miracles.
  • 4 – The sign of Jonah relates Jonah’s story with Jesus’ upcoming plight. Jonah was in the whale for 3 days and Jesus will be in the tomb for 3 days. Both exited.
  • 5-12 – Once again, the disciples are somewhat dense. They’ve just seen Jesus feed multitudes with meager amounts of food and they’re worried about his provisions for them. Jesus, in the midst of this, warns them against a greater danger, the Pharisees’ and Sadducees’ teachings.

Psalm 20:1-9:

  • 7-8 – Where this verse lists horses and chariots as things they trusted in over the Lord, we could probably fill those blanks differently. Verse 8 reminds us who is forever in control.

Proverbs 4:20-27:

  • These wise words sound like the verse of every parent giving sound, solid wisdom that could keep their children away from a multitude of heartache. Like the hearers of this proverb, we too struggle to take them at face value.

January 13 – Daily Notes – Amanda

Genesis 28:1-29:35:

  • 1-9 – Jacob is sent to find an Israelite to marry. Esau already had two Canaanite wives, which Jacob is strictly forbidden from. Esau then marries a woman descended from Ishmael.
  • 10-13 – In the book of John, Jesus likens himself to this ladder Jacob dreams of when he explains that angels will ascend and descend on the Son of Man.
  • 14-20 – Presumably Jacob is working for Laban in the month when he first stays with him. Laban offers to pay him for his work eventually and Jacob asks for his younger daughter in return.
  • 25 – Unfortunate for Leah that someone has to be duped into marrying her.
  • 31-35 – Though Rachel has Jacob’s heart, Leah has his sons, which societally was much more significant.

Matthew 9:18-38:

  • 18-26 – Jesus performs two miracles, one unintentionally. The bleeding woman’s faith heals her, but Jesus clearly overcomes the lack of faith of all those morning the young girl’s death by raising her from the dead.
  • 27-31 – Once again, Jesus encounters people who believe in his ability. Once they are healed, they disobey Jesus’ instructions not to tell anyone what has happened.
  • 18-34 – A series of 3 miracles right in a row indicates that it is important that the reader notice this. Whenever anything comes in 3’s, the reader should pay close attention.
  • 36 – This phrase, “sheep without a shepherd” is used to describe the Israelites in the Old Testament and the Jews in the New Testament multiple times.
  • 37-38 – This is still true today. There are a wealth of people who need to hear the gospel and repent, but few who are willing to share the message.

Psalm 11:1-7:

  • David chooses to take refuge in the Lord instead of following the advice of others to flee from his enemies because they are clearly ready to attack.
  • 4-7 – David contrasts the righteousness of God with the sinfulness of the wicked.

Proverbs 3:11-12:

  • We should not receive God or trusted advisors’ reproaches as hateful or negative. Instead, we should view it as enough love to care to correct us and help us get better.