What to Expect – Week 2

Congratulations good and faithful servant! You’ve made it to week 2!! You’ve already covered hundreds and hundreds of years of Biblical history in Genesis and the first 30 years of Jesus’ life – I consider that good progress.

This week you will continue to learn about the Israelites, the family known as “God’s people.” Specifically, you’ll read about The Patriarchs. These were the original fathers of the Israelites: Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

One thing to be wary of as you read: do not read these characters like they are moral compasses. They are not! They are simply imperfect people who God chose to use for big things.

Does that frustrate you? It does me sometimes. Confession: I can’t stand Jacob. I think he’s a total weasel. But, God chose to use him. And honestly, it should actually be a comfort because if he can use Jacob, he can probably use me too. That’s good news.

Switching gears to the New Testament, we pick up in the middle of the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus’ most famous sermon. Then we head into the thick of his ministry with his disciples.

One important thing to pay attention to this week is noticing just how counter-cultural Jesus was. He completely flips what faithfulness looks like on its head. While the religious leaders were calling for strict adherence to the letter of the law, Jesus was encouraging people to go beyond the law to grace, mercy, and love. The religious leaders were not fans – drama ensues.

The Psalms continue to feel. The Proverbs continue to teach.

Happy reading to all!

January 5 – Daily Notes – Amanda

Genesis 11:1-13:4:

  • 1-9 – Humans, once again, were trying to become more powerful and God could see the disasters that would ensue so he changed their languages so they would not be able to work all together anymore.
  • 27 – Enter Abram who will later be known as Abraham.
  • 1-3 – Though this sounds like a great deal for Abram, and it was, it would have been scary to leave behind the rest of your family and go to a land you don’t know.
  • 10-20 – Abram clearly didn’t trust God to take care of him in the place and situation God sent him. Trusting in things other than God seems to be the most prevalent sin in Scripture.

Matthew 5:1-26:

  • Matthew chapters 5-7 are Jesus’ most famous sermon, The Sermon on the Mount.
  • 2-12 – These are The Beatitudes, which means “blessings”. Jesus offers up very counter-cultural blessings, which go against who we think receive our earthly blessings. These saying nothing about success, wealth, or fame.
  • 16 – When we have and know the love of God and salvation of Jesus, they should be things we want to share because we recognize how powerful and necessary they are.
  • 17-20 – Jesus didn’t negate any of the laws, he simply took them further. Also, both Jesus and the writer of Matthew found it important to frequently remind the reader of the various ways Jesus fulfilled Old Testament prophecies.
  • 23-24 – Jesus calls us to love first and then to fulfill our religious obligations. We can show our love for God by loving others.

Psalm 5:1-12:

  • David asks God to hear his prayers and then becomes extremely raw about how he wants the Lord to punish a variety of his enemies. We truly can take anything to the Lord in prayer.

Proverbs 1:24-28:

  • Verses 26 through 28 do not sound like a godly, gracious response, but remember that this is Solomon writing from the perspective of wisdom. When we ignore wise counsel, we will feel mocked by what we were so clearly advised to do.