Genesis 46:1-47:31, Matthew 15:1-28, Psalms 19:1-14, Proverbs 4:14-19
Today is the 23rd day of January, welcome to the Daily Audio Bible I am Brian and it’s great to be here with you today as we continue the journey through our week and continue the journey through the Scriptures. So, let’s dive in. We’ve been reading from the English Standard Version this week, which is of course what we’ll continue to do. And in the Old Testament we are working our way through the book of Genesis and we’ve settled into this story about a man named Joseph and we’ve talked quite a bit about Joseph so we don’t need to do a recap, we know where we are, but we’re continuing the story today with Joseph reaching out to his family and…and…and Jacob, his father being able to lay eyes on a son that he thought had been long, long dead. So, we pick up the story with Genesis chapter 46 and we’ll read 46 and 47 today.
Okay. So, Jesus has plenty…plenty to say in the Gospel of Matthew today, plenty that we really, really, deeply need to pay attention to. So, there’s several things here. Let’s kind of work in reverse order, because some of these are things we really, really need to pay attention to and then one of these things is for context. So, Jesus is moving around the region doing ministry as we know, and He went to the district of Tyre and Sidon and…and a non-Hebrew woman, a Canaanite woman comes to Jesus and asked for mercy, that her daughter is oppressed by a demon and…and she needs help. So, obviously Jesus could perform miracles, or that miracles, that the miraculous of the supernatural was happening around Jesus was spreading all over the place. And Jesus didn’t answer her. And she kept asking and she kept begging until the disciples…like she kept asking the disciples to go to Jesus. And, so, they finally come to Jesus and say, “hey, can you send her away. Like, she’s bugging us now.” And then Jesus says, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.” And she’s like, “please help me, please help me.” And He’s like, “it’s not right to take the children’s bread and throw it to the dogs.” And she’s like, “but…but even the dogs get to eat the crumbs when they fall off the table.” And that changes everything and Jesus is like, “wow” basically. “Great is your faith. Be it done for you as you desire.” And the daughter was healed. And we can look at this and go, “well, why didn’t He just do that in the first place? Doesn’t Jesus love everybody? I mean, like, why is He being so exclusive here and excluding people? Like, what’s going on?”
We’re not too far into the story so we can remember. If we go back to the book of Genesis, we remember the fall of Adam and Eve, we remember that that separated them from God. We’ve talk about all of this. We watched the world use…you know…we watched humanity use their knowledge of good and evil to try to make themselves a God and we watched things fall apart and disintegrate to the point that the world was destroyed by a flood. We’ve watched what the knowledge of good and evil has done to humanity. We’ve also talked about the spiritual realms and God’s divine family and…and how that pops its head up in different stories from time to time. We also see in the Scriptures that there are times where God essentially releases people to go to their own destruction, to go to the way that they’re demanding to go. And then we saw this story of the Tower of Babel and everybody trying to unite themselves to essentially deify themselves and try to become unstoppable. And God comes down and confuses the language and sends people all throughout the earth. Many biblical scholars view this as like exactly Lord we’re talking about, God sending them off on their own way to go the way that they wanna go and disinheriting them because they have chosen to worship false gods. Immediately after that story is when we meet this man named Abram and the story turns from there because the world, humanity has essentially rejected God and now they’re being allowed to go their own way and follow whatever their own path is going to be, which will lead them to destruction. But then we meet Abram, this one man. And God appears to this one man and says go into a land that I will show you. And we’ve been following his family since. So, it’s as if at ancient times, people went their own way, but God would not stop trying. And He goes to Abram and says I will be your God and will create a people out of you that will be my people and I will be there God. So, in the midst of the chaos and anarchy of the world God chose one person to create a people out of that would be His people on the earth because all the other people had given themselves to other gods. So, he would use Abram and this people that would be formed to show the light to the rest of the world, to bless all the nations through Abraham. Well, that story has a lot of fits and starts. It’s the story of the Bible. So, we’re gonna read that story but if we zoom forward into the book of Matthew now and we come back alongside Jesus, we have to first understand that it’s still the same story, we have just zoomed forward significantly. Jesus has come to earth among those people, the Hebrew people. He was born as one of the people that God had predicted, had chosen through Abram so long ago. But by the time that Jesus arrived on the scene all that the Hebrew people understood of God, their God and their chosen-ness, their exclusivity, their holiness, their set-apart-ness to God had become nothing more than a religious ritual and…and…and power. We’ll get to that in the second. And Jesus is talking to this Canaanite woman…and we know that Jesus talked to other women. Like, there’s gonna be this story of the woman at the well, right, where Jesus talks to her and she’s a Samaritan, but in this particular exchange Jesus is saying what His mission is, that He’s come to this group of people that had been set apart among all the other peoples, not because they were special, like not because they deserved anything, but because everyone else had given themselves to other gods. And, so, God created a people for Himself upon this earth to reclaim things. So, Jesus is stating His mission. This is who I’ve come to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. And we’re reading this. Israel is Jacob. Jacob’s children are the children of Israel, the house of Israel. There are reasons that this matters to us now. A couple that I can think of right off the top of my head, the first is, Jesus came to earth as a Hebrew in a Hebrew context and taught as a Hebrew rabbi from the Hebrew Scriptures. So, it becomes difficult to understand Jesus without understanding the Hebrew story because this is the context that He is ministering in and these are the people that He’s ministering to. And they understand Him, which doesn’t mean that they accept everything that he’s saying. Some do, some don’t. But they understand Him because He’s in the context of their worldview, they understand what’s happening even though they mostly miss who He is. This is gonna start mattering more and more as we continue our journey forward, especially when we get into…into books like the book of Acts and we get into the church era, because Jesus Jewishness, right, His Hebrew ethnicity and His understanding of the Hebrew Scriptures, this is the context that He’s ministering into and it will matter later to the early church when all of a sudden non-Hebrew people known as Gentiles begin flooding in to the kingdom. Then they have a problem to figure out because this is an exclusive people with an exclusive religion and there are steps that need to be taken if you want to become Jewish and it causes some tremendous unrest that eventually causes the very first church council, which we will read about when we get into the book of Acts.
Okay so there’s our context peace. Now let’s look at what Jesus was saying today. We began Matthew 15 and it says, “the Pharisees and scribes came to Jesus from Jerusalem.” Let’s just pause for a second. Jesus was on the map at this point if Pharisees and scribes are walking 90 miles up into the Galilee to hear Jesus. So, we notice that there’s momentum, energy building around the message that Jesus is sharing as He moves around the region. So, people come all the way from Jerusalem to check Him out and there like, “so, you know, why do your disciples break the tradition of the elders?” Now, the elders here would be the Sanhedrin, they would be the leaders at the time, those who interpreted the Hebrew Scriptures and wrestled through how to interpret them so that they could pass those rules and traditions onto the people so that they could honor God. So, what Jesus is being asked here is essentially, “hey, you seem to be a rabbi, you seem to have a following, people seem to be listening to what you’re saying and you have disciples that are your inner circle and everybody’s watching all of this. Why are your disciples breaking the traditions of the elders because they’re not washing their hands before they eat?” Jesus just, in this instance, just flat out peels back the layers and exposes what is going on among this chosen people. And we can go back and read Matthew 15 and we don’t need to re-quote Jesus. We’ve already read it. He’s basically saying, “you have made tradition the thing. You have made yourself the keeper of the tradition and you have lost the plot of the story.” To quote Jesus now, “for the sake of your tradition you have made void the word of God. You hypocrites! Well did Isaiah prophesy of you when he said, “the people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far from me. In vain do they worship me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.”” That is hard core right there, friends. And we can go, like, “well…yeah, He was he was calling out those religious leaders because they were hypocrites and they were against Him and who would want to be against nice, sweet, healing loving Jesus” and “yeah…they’re the bad guys.” But yeah, like we don’t have to look so far today before we can find this same thing going on. Who gets to make the rules? Who gets to be the keepers of the rules? Who gets to pass judgment on those who don’t keep their traditions or rules? Though it’s bit of an ongoing problem and in our own lives in our own hearts posture, we need openness not closed fistedness. We need openness to the Spirit of God, not a closed heart that says, “I have the rules and regulations. I’m gonna try my very, very best to obey these rules.” We need an openness. Jesus told the Pharisees that for the sake of keeping the traditions they made the word of God void. Let’s make sure we’re not the same thing. And then Jesus actually takes the time to flesh out what He’s saying, because those people, those leaders from Jerusalem had come to Jesus asking why they weren’t obeying the traditions of the elders, not…not why are you disobeying the Scriptures. Why are you becoming a heretic and disobeying God? No, they’re asking why He’s not obeying the traditions of the elders. And He shows them, “like, you’ve made traditions that break God’s rules. You’ve lost the plot. Even when it comes to washing hands, you’ve lost the plot. It’s not what goes into the mouth that defiles a person it’s what comes out of a person’s heart that defiles them. And yet you’re trying to ritually wrought wash your hands, thinking that somehow that’s gonna wash your insides. You’ve lost the plot. It’s not outside in. That is a complete backward way of living. It’s inside out. That is how you were made.”
And, so, Jesus…there's…there’s plenty…I mean, we can…we can hang on Your words for the rest of our lives, and we will. So, we’ve we spent some time just exploring today. And now that we’ve done that exploring, we invite You, we open ourselves to Your Holy Spirit. Where have we lost the plot? How are we living completely backward to the way that we were made and to the ways of Your kingdom? How will we ever see Your kingdom if we are backward to it? So, come Holy Spirit. We thank You for context. We thank You for challenge. We thank You for disrupting us and we invite You to lead us into all truth. And we have no doubt that You would do that if we will listen. And, so, we invite ourselves to pay attention. Come Holy Spirit we pray. In Jesus’ name we ask. Amen.
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And that is it for today. I’m Brian I love you and I’ll be waiting for you here tomorrow.
Community Prayer and Praise:
I want to say thank you to Daily Audio Bible. I was 38 years old about three years ago when I had a stroke, a massive stroke that left my left side weak and it really difficult for me to read the Bible. So, without the Daily Audio Bible I wouldn’t be able to enjoy the word of God. Again, thank you for what you do. I play…I pray blessings upon the people at Daily Audio Bible. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.
Good morning Daily Audio Bible family this is His Beloved I’m calling in to pray for, I don’t believe you left your name sweet brother who called in for his mother Diana who has stage IV brain cancer. We heard you, we’re praying with you brother. God bless your heart. He just really touched my heart. And, so, we hold your mother up. We asked her to desire of these foods and fruits and vegetables that you wish to help your mother nourish her with. Father God we ask You to heal his mother from the top of her head to the bottom of her feet Father God, that anything that is not of You would be bound and cast out of her Father God, that You would heal her Father God and bless her family and her son with peace and endurance during this time they would keep their eyes on You. In Jesus’ name we pray. I’m also calling for Broken Hearted and that Your husband left, and this breaks my heart, of course. So, I pray Father God that You would give her hope and joy and love and peace. Holy Spirit restore her and fill her with anything that is not of You, that she would…we would right now I hold this situation her marriage up Lord and I put it at the altar Father God, that You would bless or if it’s abusive as she kind of said Father God that You would take it from her and You would give her so much more Father God, that she’s a daughter of the most-high King, that she should be adored and loved and worshiped Father God. I ask during this time that You would bring peace that passes all understanding Father. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.
Diana Davis, your doctors may have done all that they can, but our ultimate healer is God. Now that you have prepared for the care of your children should you die, let’s prepare for the possibility that God will heal you. So, in Isaiah 1…Isaiah 40, I want to read that for you. ah…I just lost it…here it is…okay. “That those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength, they will soar on wings like eagles, they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” And I also want to give you Romans 15 verse 13. “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” So, Lord I lift up Diana to You because You are our healer. We ask for the healing of Diana’s Spirit, mind, body and soul and Lord please strengthen her faith and her body. Give her a hope and a future and fill her life with love and joy no matter how long or short her life is. Show her how to use her bounty of food that You give us to heal her body. Show her how to avoid foods that beat cancer and foods that…and herbs that starve cancer. Restore her to life Lord so she can continue to mentor her children on Your ways. We thank You Lord. In Your name we pray. Amen.
My name is Heather and I’m in the Atlanta. I…I am consumed with fear, even making this call. Five years ago, I was embarking on a journey in ministry and Satan unleashed a wrath on my life that I can…I cannot handle anymore. I am asking for prayer, for God to please reveal Himself to me. Help me. I have never been so low in my life. My family has been destroyed. I’m so tired. I’m so tired. I just ask for prayers for endurance to be able to be strong, to be where my kids need me to be, when everybody has left us. Thank you.
Hey Daily Audio Bible is Dr. Kinai from London I pray that everyone is well and it’s the 16th of January and I just wanted to raise a prayer point for the lady who called in who said that she’s separated from her husband of seven years and it’s likely to end in divorce. And I just…I just had the Lord saying to me that she needs to be reminded that she is seen, and she is known by me. God sees you. God knows you, and there’s nothing in life that takes Him by surprise, and He’s journeyed with you through this. And I just pray that your identity in Him will be restored. I pray that you will know that you are loved, you are cherished, and you are wanted. And while the situation looks dark and bleak, I pray that you would turn to Jesus, our Hope, the One that brings light into dark situations. And I pray for your husband as well, that he will come to the knowledge of God and God’s perfect will will be done in Jesus’ name. And…and just allow praise to be on your lips. You know, there’s this wonderful psalm that says, I vow to praise you through the good and the bad, I vow to praise you whether happy or sad. I pray that you will offer of the Lord a sacrifice of praise. You may not feel like praising but you do it and it ushers you into His presence. You may not feel like worshiping but it’s a sacrifice because it cost you something. And I encourage you to press in through worship. Surrender your thoughts, surrender your heart, the pain in worship and trust that God will indeed restore you. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Hello everybody God’s Smile here from England. I am just a bit tearful, actually. You know how just when we listen, and we’re blessed with the words from Brian as he reads God’s word. And it just really…I couldn’t help but cry and thank God because you are my church. I’m not able to get to church and there’s no…there’s not many around my area. And I remember how I just loved sitting on by Nana’s knee. She wasn’t a proper Nana, but she was like it and adopted Nana and she used to read. And my mom didn’t read to me and I would just soak up the close comfort that I never had as a child with my parents through this lady. And she would read and I…I…I so enjoyed those moments. And it just hit me…though I’ve not sat on Brian’s knee…I felt like I was sat on God’s knee and He’s just reading His word to me and is just wonderful, isn’t it? And these are tears of joy. And yes, I’m still smiling. It just…it just really broke me. I’m so thankful that He cares about such tiny details, which are not that tiny. But you know how He just speaks to you your hearts and you’re just so thankful. Anyway, I’m gonna go and blow my nose. Bye-bye everybody. I love you all and I love this community. I love my church. Bye-bye.
Hi this is Mary and Colorado and I’m calling for I believe you said your name was Kimberly and that you’re struggling with PTSD over childhood sexual abuse. And I just want to reach out and tell you that I know exactly how you feel and that I experienced the same thing from a member of our church when I was a child and I often feel very triggered when I go to church. And I just want to pray for you. Father God would You give her Your piece and Your strength. Help her to know that You have not given her a spirit of fear but of love and of adoption and that she is Your child and that You care for her. Kimberly, I would just encourage you to reach out to those in your church and just talk to them about how you are feeling. It may be scary, but it really has helped me to have someone who knows, just even how I respond when I am feeling triggered and that they can sit there and hold my hand and tell me that everything’s okay. So, I just want to encourage you. Love you sister and God bless you too and I hope that you’re doing okay.