Genesis 23:1-24:51, Matthew 8:1-17, Psalms 9:13-20, Proverbs 3:1-6
Today is the 11th day of January. Welcome to the Daily Audio Bible. I am Brian and it is always a joy to be here with you to take the next step forward on our journey through the Scriptures this year. An we’re coming to the end of our first full work week of this brand-new year. So, hopefully you’re feeling kind of moved into the new year. Hopefully the rhythm of the Daily Audio Bible is a part of that journey and I think we’re getting kind of getting moved into this rhythm of the year that will carry us to the center of our souls because the Bible has a way of doing that and will also influence the way that we conduct our exterior lives this year. So, well done for making it this far. We’ve been reading from the New International Version this week and we’ll take the next step forward in the book of Genesis, which is the first book of the Bible. Today Genesis chapter 24 verse 52 through 26 verse 16. And by way of reminder, Abraham has sent his servant because Abraham is now in his old age and he’s lost his wife Sarah, he sent his servant to his own family to find a wife for the child of promise named Isaac. And that’s what happened and we’re in the middle of that story. And, so, we’ll pick up where we left off in Genesis chapter 24.
Okay. So, in the book of Genesis today, we said goodbye to Abraham and, of course, we’ve been following the story of Abram who heard from God and followed him into a land that he had never been in and entered into covenant with God. His name was changed to Abraham and he influences the world until today. And so, we just read of his life in the book of Genesis. And now he has died and been buried in the cave of Makpella where he buried Sarah, but the isn’t the last we will hear of Abraham, we’ll hear of Abraham for the rest of the Bible and he influences the world until today. In fact, we could easily say Abraham is more influential as far as a patriarch as far as an ancient one over the world’s religions of today than anybody else and that would be true. So, we should take a moment to send and give honor where honor is due, we’re saying goodbye to Abraham, he’s laid his head down in death. Now, there were two sons, right, Ishmael and Isaac and we went through some of their family tree. So, Ishmael goes off and has his own…the generations that follow become their own people and we’re kind of tracking with the Isaac story. And that will be the story that we chase the rest of the Bible. So, Isaac has married Rebecca and we read of how Rebecca came to be Isaac’s life and they have had twin sons, Jacob and Esau. And it’s very easy, especially if is the first trip through the Bible to go, “these are very fascinating stories and interesting things and, yes, I can see that there’s a lot to think about but I don’t know how all the stories connected”. It’s all connected, which is why we kind of take time to pause and go, “let’s remember how we got here”, because all of these stories and all of these generations are going somewhere and we’ll be following that story throughout the Bible.
We get into the book of Matthew and we’re continuing to kind of observe and get to know Jesus and His personality and His ministry style and places that He went and things that He did. And certainly, there were miraculous things in today’s reading, but maybe more important is the fact that Jesus began to reveal that if you want to follow him it’s gonna cost you everything. And as we continue forward that will become more and more apparent to us not only as like a concept but also in practical ways. We’ll learn the faith that we have placed in Christ and this journey of faith that we are walking on will be the continual journey of ridding ourselves of all entanglements that would hold us back from union with God. And isn’t that ultimately the pursuit of our faith in Christ? Is it not to be transformed and become Christ like and operate in this world on this planet where mankind is no longer separated by a chasm of sin between God and man but that is been bridged and we are reunited with God, as was always intended for mankind? But we will find that the things that have attached themselves to us, the things that we bow down and worship to that aren’t God, I mean every single one of those things is going to be confronted and at every turn we will have the opportunity to make a choice and that choice will get to matter and if we will follow Jesus then we’ll find that we have to be willing to release and let go of plenty of things, but we will find that these are the very things that would make it impossible for us to become who we were created to be. And, so, we’ll be continuing to take that journey throughout the whole year but we’re still kind of here in the beginning and just reading these stories and maybe this is the first time that you’ve systematically gone through the Gospels and just really, really paid attention to the stories. Like, yeah, we have all the Sunday school stories and we know all of the different things, but maybe this is the first time just front to back going through. And, so, it’s important to just get to know Jesus in the stories that are found in the Gospels and then just simply ask ourselves, “does my life resemble in any way the life that Jesus lived”? And in some areas I we’ll be able to say, “yes, I think so, I think in this area I continue to grow forward and become more like my Savior” while in other areas we would have to say, “no man, there’s a lot of work to do here.” Once that is exposed though, a lot of times we’ll just cover it back over, don’t have time, can’t maintain all these responsibilities, just trying to get my spiritual fix and stay in touch with my heart. We’re gonna have to find out that some of the other things that are in our lives may have to go so that we can pay closer attention to the things that are going to absolutely deeply matter and can transform the way we live our lives.
It’s just like what we read in Proverbs today, “do not be wise in your own eyes, fear the Lord and shun evil.” So, that’s an instruction, and that is a trajectory or a direction to head in and we should, but the Proverbs goes on to tell us why. “This, if you do this, if you do not be wise in your own eyes and fear the Lord and shun evil, then it will bring health to your body and nourishment to your bones.” So we’re seeing in Proverbs that if we pay attention to what’s going on within us it is absolutely going to affect the health of what is happening exterior. So, plenty to think about today as there is every day.
And father, we invite you into all of it. We can think about it all we want but without your Holy Spirit’s guidance we can’t plant these words in our hearts, we can’t cultivate and water them so that they become the fruit of the Spirit. We can just become fertile soil. And, so, we do and ask your Holy Spirit to come, plant the word of God in our lives and as we continue forward may we see new fruit of the Spirit sprouting up, a new way of thinking, a new way of being in the world, a transformed way where we are daily being sanctified, daily becoming set apart and made holy. These are things that only you can do but we come with a willing heart and surrender and ask you to do this work inside of us as we continue to sail deeper into the year and deeper into our adventure of life with you. Come Holy Spirit we pray. In Jesus’ name we ask. Amen.
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And that’s it for today. I’m Brian I love you and I’ll be waiting for you here tomorrow.