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January 19 - Morning

"'I am God, the God of your father,' he said. 'Do not be afraid to go down to Egypt, for I will make you into a great nation there. I will go down to Egypt with you, and I will surely bring you back again.  And Joseph’s own hand will close your eyes.' "
- Genesis 46:3-4

Permission to Leave the Promised Land Granted

Jacob is leaving the land of Promise for a second time, but this time it is in fulfillment of a promise/prophecy the Lord had given Abraham in Genesis 15:13-14. As he was leaving the land and heading towards the border of Egypt, Israel (Jacob) stopped at Beersheba to offer sacrifices to the God he had vowed would be his only God when he was at Bethel leaving for Padan Aram. (Genesis 28:20-22)
Jacob would have been concerned about leaving the land of his birth, the land of his home and the land he had been promised on oath when he received the birthright and the blessing coming from Abraham and Isaac. When Abraham faced a famine he fled to Egypt, and Abraham’s experience in Egypt ended poorly. (Genesis 12:10-13:1) Why would things be different this time? When Isaac faced a famine the Lord appeared to him and specifically told him, “Do not go down to Egypt; live in the land where I tell you to live.” (Genesis 26:2) Why would it be right to do something Jacob’s father was specifically commanded not to do? When Jacob had left the Promised Land to escape from Esau he fled to Padan Aram, and while he was there he was mistreated and cheated for 20 years by his father-in-law. Would not living in Egypt as foreigners be as harsh as living in Padan Aram?
God speaks to Jacob to confirm several aspects of Jacob’s adventure and to tell him that this time he was to go to Egypt. Concerning the family, the promise and the nation of Abraham God says:
1. The One speaking to Jacob is the God of that Covenant
2. Going to Egypt is part of the plan (it was prophesied to Abraham)
3. The family of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob will become the nation promised to Abraham while they are in Egypt (for 400 years, as was told to Abraham.)
4. The Lord will go with his people into Egypt
5. The Lord will bring them out of Egypt to settle in the Promised Land in the future.

Concerning Jacob personally:
1. Jacob will be comforted to know that Joseph, the son he thought he had lost, will be alive and able to close Jacob’s eyes at his death.
Jacob is not abandoning the promise given to Abraham because of the famine. Instead, the famine is driving Abraham’s family into a land where God has already told Abraham they were to go and has already sent Joseph in order to prepare a place for the family. And, while they are in the land of Egypt the promise given to Abraham will be developed and the family will become a great nation.
The words the Lord speaks to Jacob are the words of the Lord’s promise,
I will make you into a great nation there,”

These are the precise words of covenant terminology used in the original promise spoken to Abraham, repeated to Abraham and then to Isaac as the words of the Abrahamic Covenant:
1. Genesis 12:2 – “I will make you into a great nation, and I will bless you.”
2. Genesis 18:18 – “Abraham will surely become a great and powerful nation, and all nations on earth will be blessed through him.”
3. Genesis 21:18 – “Lift the boy up and take him by the hand, for I will make him into a great nation.”
4. (Concerning Ishmael: Genesis 17:20 – “As for Ishmael, I have heard you: I will surely bless him; I will make him fruitful and will greatly increase his numbers. He will be the father of twelve rulers, and I will make him into a great nation.”)

Jacob was leaving the Promised Land to begin a 400 year period that would transform his twelve sons into the beginning of a great nation. These were good days for Jacob, Joseph and the brothers.
Kabod (Hb) - Glory (Eng) - kabod is a Hebrew word that comes from a Hebrew root word that means "heavy" and "weighty." Kabod is used to identify "abundance," and "riches." We translate kabod into English with the word "Glory" to capture the Hebrew meanings of "honor," "splendor," "reverence," "reputation," and "glory."
Do I realize that it is better to fail, than to use my lips to lie and cheat?
But, it is best to act and speak in wisdom and succeed with honest lips!
I will seek wisdom and speak honest words with care.

Bible Reading Descriptions Here


Complete Text

General Text


Success in what you do


Attitude of repentance
Americas: Illegal drugs

Many of the ashlar stones used to build the Herodian structures and others were transported by having a wooden wheel system like this built around them. The larger stones would have been moved in other ways.
Kedorlaomer takes captives and heads north in Genesis 14

Someone to Quote

"Nothing sets a person so much out of the devil's reach as humility."
- Jonathan Edwards

Something to Ponder

The books of the New Testament had to meet these three requirements:
1. Apostleship - it had to have the authority of an apostle having written it or the support of an apostle.
2. Apostolic Teaching - the book had to agree with the teaching of the other books.
3. Internal Evidence - each book had to show unique internal evidence or the some claim of authority.

Many books by Christians from 80-250 AD are not considered New Testament scripture because they were not written by apostles or they were written by people posing as one of the apostles. Books were rejected from being considered part of the canon of NT scripture because:
1. They were never recognized by a major Church council.
2. If they were ever listed in the same document with the canonical books they were always placed on a separate list.
3. None of these books ever received universal acceptance by the churches.
4. Some of these books are clearly fables, deceptions, or products of some early unorthodox group trying to gain acceptance into Christendom.

Here’s a Fact

Around 150 AD Justin Martyr identified the cave that is marked by the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem by saying:
“When the Child was born in Bethlehem, since Joseph could not find lodging in that village, he took up his quarters in a certain cave near the village; and while they were there Mary brought forth the Christ and placed him in a manger, and here the Magi who came from Arabia found him.”
This site is basically the undisputed location for the birth of Christ due to multiple witnesses outside of scripture including Emperor Hadrian's (117-138 AD) attempt to erase the memory of this location by planting a grove of trees over and around the cave in honor of the Roman god Adonis.


"Better a poor man whose walk is blameless than a fool whose lips are perverse."
- Proverbs 19:1

Coach’s Corner

Doing what is right is not always easy. God’s way is not always popular.

Genesis 21
New International Version (NIV)
The Birth of Isaac
21 Now the Lord was gracious to Sarah as he had said, and the Lord did for Sarah what he had promised. Sarah became pregnant and bore a son to Abraham in his old age, at the very time God had promised him. Abraham gave the name Isaac to the son Sarah bore him. When his son Isaac was eight days old, Abraham circumcised him, as God commanded him. Abraham was a hundred years old when his son Isaac was born to him.
Sarah said, “God has brought me laughter, and everyone who hears about this will laugh with me.” And she added, “Who would have said to Abraham that Sarah would nurse children? Yet I have borne him a son in his old age.”
Hagar and Ishmael Sent Away
The child grew and was weaned, and on the day Isaac was weaned Abraham held a great feast. But Sarah saw that the son whom Hagar the Egyptian had borne to Abraham was mocking, 10 and she said to Abraham, “Get rid of that slave woman and her son, for that woman’s son will never share in the inheritance with my son Isaac.”
11 The matter distressed Abraham greatly because it concerned his son. 12 But God said to him, “Do not be so distressed about the boy and your slave woman. Listen to whatever Sarah tells you, because it is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned. 13 I will make the son of the slave into a nation also, because he is your offspring.”
14 Early the next morning Abraham took some food and a skin of water and gave them to Hagar. He set them on her shoulders and then sent her off with the boy. She went on her way and wandered in the Desert of Beersheba.
15 When the water in the skin was gone, she put the boy under one of the bushes. 16 Then she went off and sat down about a bowshot away, for she thought, “I cannot watch the boy die.” And as she sat there, she began to sob.
17 God heard the boy crying, and the angel of God called to Hagar from heaven and said to her, “What is the matter, Hagar? Do not be afraid; God has heard the boy crying as he lies there. 18 Lift the boy up and take him by the hand, for I will make him into a great nation.”
19 Then God opened her eyes and she saw a well of water. So she went and filled the skin with water and gave the boy a drink.
20 God was with the boy as he grew up. He lived in the desert and became an archer. 21 While he was living in the Desert of Paran, his mother got a wife for him from Egypt.
The Treaty at Beersheba
22 At that time Abimelek and Phicol the commander of his forces said to Abraham, “God is with you in everything you do. 23 Now swear to me here before God that you will not deal falsely with me or my children or my descendants. Show to me and the country where you now reside as a foreigner the same kindness I have shown to you.”
24 Abraham said, “I swear it.”
25 Then Abraham complained to Abimelek about a well of water that Abimelek’s servants had seized. 26 But Abimelek said, “I don’t know who has done this. You did not tell me, and I heard about it only today.”
27 So Abraham brought sheep and cattle and gave them to Abimelek, and the two men made a treaty. 28 Abraham set apart seven ewe lambs from the flock, 29 and Abimelek asked Abraham, “What is the meaning of these seven ewe lambs you have set apart by themselves?”
30 He replied, “Accept these seven lambs from my hand as a witness that I dug this well.”
31 So that place was called Beersheba, because the two men swore an oath there.
32 After the treaty had been made at Beersheba, Abimelek and Phicol the commander of his forces returned to the land of the Philistines. 33 Abraham planted a tamarisk tree in Beersheba, and there he called on the name of the Lord, the Eternal God. 34 And Abraham stayed in the land of the Philistines for a long time.
Job 13
New International Version (NIV)
“My eyes have seen all this,     my ears have heard and understood it.

What you know, I also know;     I am not inferior to you.

But I desire to speak to the Almighty     and to argue my case with God.

You, however, smear me with lies;     you are worthless physicians, all of you!

If only you would be altogether silent!     For you, that would be wisdom.

Hear now my argument;     listen to the pleas of my lips.

Will you speak wickedly on God’s behalf?     Will you speak deceitfully for him?

Will you show him partiality?     Will you argue the case for God?

Would it turn out well if he examined you?     Could you deceive him as you might deceive a mortal?
He would surely call you to account     if you secretly showed partiality.
Would not his splendor terrify you?     Would not the dread of him fall on you?
Your maxims are proverbs of ashes;     your defenses are defenses of clay.
“Keep silent and let me speak;     then let come to me what may.
Why do I put myself in jeopardy     and take my life in my hands?
Though he slay me, yet will I hope in him;     I will surely defend my ways to his face.
Indeed, this will turn out for my deliverance,     for no godless person would dare come before him!
Listen carefully to what I say;     let my words ring in your ears.
Now that I have prepared my case,     I know I will be vindicated.
Can anyone bring charges against me?     If so, I will be silent and die.
“Only grant me these two things, God,     and then I will not hide from you:
Withdraw your hand far from me,     and stop frightening me with your terrors.
Then summon me and I will answer,     or let me speak, and you reply to me.
How many wrongs and sins have I committed?     Show me my offense and my sin.
Why do you hide your face     and consider me your enemy?
Will you torment a windblown leaf?     Will you chase after dry chaff?
For you write down bitter things against me     and make me reap the sins of my youth.
You fasten my feet in shackles;     you keep close watch on all my paths     by putting marks on the soles of my feet.
“So man wastes away like something rotten,     like a garment eaten by moths.
Genesis 22-23
New International Version (NIV)
Abraham Tested
22 Some time later God tested Abraham. He said to him, “Abraham!”
“Here I am,” he replied.
Then God said, “Take your son, your only son, whom you love—Isaac—and go to the region of Moriah. Sacrifice him there as a burnt offering on a mountain I will show you.”
Early the next morning Abraham got up and loaded his donkey. He took with him two of his servants and his son Isaac. When he had cut enough wood for the burnt offering, he set out for the place God had told him about. On the third day Abraham looked up and saw the place in the distance. He said to his servants, “Stay here with the donkey while I and the boy go over there. We will worship and then we will come back to you.”
Abraham took the wood for the burnt offering and placed it on his son Isaac, and he himself carried the fire and the knife. As the two of them went on together, Isaac spoke up and said to his father Abraham, “Father?”
“Yes, my son?” Abraham replied.
“The fire and wood are here,” Isaac said, “but where is the lamb for the burnt offering?”
Abraham answered, “God himself will provide the lamb for the burnt offering, my son.” And the two of them went on together.
When they reached the place God had told him about, Abraham built an altar there and arranged the wood on it. He bound his son Isaac and laid him on the altar, on top of the wood. 10 Then he reached out his hand and took the knife to slay his son. 11 But the angel of the Lord called out to him from heaven, “Abraham! Abraham!”
“Here I am,” he replied.
12 “Do not lay a hand on the boy,” he said. “Do not do anything to him. Now I know that you fear God, because you have not withheld from me your son, your only son.”
13 Abraham looked up and there in a thicket he saw a ram caught by its horns. He went over and took the ram and sacrificed it as a burnt offering instead of his son. 14 So Abraham called that place The Lord Will Provide. And to this day it is said, “On the mountain of the Lord it will be provided.”
15 The angel of the Lord called to Abraham from heaven a second time 16 and said, “I swear by myself, declares the Lord, that because you have done this and have not withheld your son, your only son, 17 I will surely bless you and make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as the sand on the seashore. Your descendants will take possession of the cities of their enemies, 18 and through your offspring all nations on earth will be blessed, because you have obeyed me.”
19 Then Abraham returned to his servants, and they set off together for Beersheba. And Abraham stayed in Beersheba.
Nahor’s Sons
20 Some time later Abraham was told, “Milkah is also a mother; she has borne sons to your brother Nahor: 21 Uz the firstborn, Buz his brother, Kemuel (the father of Aram), 22 Kesed, Hazo, Pildash, Jidlaph and Bethuel.” 23 Bethuel became the father of Rebekah. Milkah bore these eight sons to Abraham’s brother Nahor. 24 His concubine, whose name was Reumah, also had sons: Tebah, Gaham, Tahash and Maakah.
The Death of Sarah
23 Sarah lived to be a hundred and twenty-seven years old. She died at Kiriath Arba (that is, Hebron) in the land of Canaan, and Abraham went to mourn for Sarah and to weep over her.
Then Abraham rose from beside his dead wife and spoke to the Hittites. He said, “I am a foreigner and stranger among you. Sell me some property for a burial site here so I can bury my dead.”
The Hittites replied to Abraham, “Sir, listen to us. You are a mighty prince among us. Bury your dead in the choicest of our tombs. None of us will refuse you his tomb for burying your dead.”
Then Abraham rose and bowed down before the people of the land, the Hittites. He said to them, “If you are willing to let me bury my dead, then listen to me and intercede with Ephron son of Zohar on my behalf so he will sell me the cave of Machpelah, which belongs to him and is at the end of his field. Ask him to sell it to me for the full price as a burial site among you.”
10 Ephron the Hittite was sitting among his people and he replied to Abraham in the hearing of all the Hittites who had come to the gate of his city. 11 “No, my lord,” he said. “Listen to me; I give you the field, and I give you the cave that is in it. I give it to you in the presence of my people. Bury your dead.”
12 Again Abraham bowed down before the people of the land 13 and he said to Ephron in their hearing, “Listen to me, if you will. I will pay the price of the field. Accept it from me so I can bury my dead there.”
14 Ephron answered Abraham, 15 “Listen to me, my lord; the land is worth four hundred shekels of silver, but what is that between you and me? Bury your dead.”
16 Abraham agreed to Ephron’s terms and weighed out for him the price he had named in the hearing of the Hittites: four hundred shekels of silver, according to the weight current among the merchants.
17 So Ephron’s field in Machpelah near Mamre—both the field and the cave in it, and all the trees within the borders of the field—was deeded 18 to Abraham as his property in the presence of all the Hittites who had come to the gate of the city. 19 Afterward Abraham buried his wife Sarah in the cave in the field of Machpelah near Mamre (which is at Hebron) in the land of Canaan. 20 So the field and the cave in it were deeded to Abraham by the Hittites as a burial site.

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