Genesis 42:18-43:34, Matthew 13:47-14:12, Psalms 18:16-36, Provers 4:7-10
Today is the 21st day of January welcome to the Daily Audio Bible I am Brian it is wonderful to be here with you today as we reach the three-week mark in our year. And, so, we are beginning to settle into the rhythm, the one that will carry us through this year each and every day then. And, so, let’s dive in and take the next step forward together, which leads us back into the book of Genesis and back into the story of Joseph, who has now come face-to-face with his brothers, the brothers that trafficked him. We’re reading from the New Living Translation this week. Genesis chapter 42 verse 18 through 43 verse 34.
Okay. So in the book of Genesis, we are following the story of Joseph and it has a lot of twists and turns. We’ve taken a round-trip journey from Egypt back to Canaan and then back to Egypt again today. His brothers return home to their father Jacob or Israel. They tell the whole story about how harshly the man, the leader in Egypt who happened to be there brother, they just don’t know it, had treated them and how that they would never see his face again unless they brought their brother Benjamin back. This is a very distressing thing for Jacob because Benjamin is the only son that he has left with his wife Rachel who has died. And his son Joseph, he also believes is dead. So, Benjamin’s the only one left. And, so, he procrastinates until they’re about to run out of food again and then finally with great distress he releases Benjamin to go to Egypt. They arrive in Egypt. Joseph has them brought to his own house where they’re gonna have lunch and they’re freaking out about it. And then Joseph is able to experience seeing his brother Benjamin, the one full blooded brother that he has. His other brothers have different mothers. And this brings on a tsunami of emotion in Joseph’s heart and he has to leave and weep alone. And you…you can almost feel the tension here in this story between the brothers and Joseph. It’s as if he wants to rush in and just reveal who he is but he’s being cautious. They trafficked him. They sold him. They passed him off for dead. They’ve been carrying this secret for a very long time, and the truth is, after they sold Joseph, they don’t know whether he’s dead or alive. They don’t know where he is. He’s gone, as good as dead. And Joseph could solve that mystery, but he’s being cautious. He’s waiting. He’s finding out what he needs to know. And one of the things that he deeply needs to know is the position of their heart. So, if we can feel the tension in the story we can only imagine living through the story, the tension that would have been there, the dissonance in Joseph’s heart and mind, the confusion in his brothers. But the tension is actually bringing to the surface the issues and we’ll see that going forward.
In the book of Matthew today Jesus is talking about the kingdom of heaven, and that is something that Jesus talks about a lot. And we’re sticking here in these first couple of weeks really close to the stories that are being told in the book of Genesis, because if we can get the lay of the land and understand that we are talking about a family and we saw the development of that family. And, so, there are now 12 sons of Israel, the children of Israel. If we understand that they will grow into a large multitude of people and it will be these people, Israel, the children of Israel that we will be traveling with through the entire Bible. If we can kind of get the lay of the land, there then it’s a lot easier to stick with story and not just be lost in all of these names and how they may be connected. In the New Testament we’re reading the synoptic Gospels. So, a lot of the stories we’re reading in Matthew, we’ll also encounter them in Mark and Luke. And, so, we’ll have plenty of time to dive in. But Jesus is talking about the kingdom of heaven. And this is a central theme as we move through the Gospels and witness the ministry, the earthly ministry of Jesus. And this helps us be rooted in the New Testament to what’s being unveiled or revealed. And that is one of the things that Jesus came to announce and reveal, the kingdom. And that concept, the kingdom of heaven, the kingdom of God, we…we talk about that a lot even today. But we also make assumptions. Thankfully, we have the Gospels that tell us the message that Jesus was conveying. And, so, Jesus says, “the kingdom of heaven is like a fishing net that was thrown into the water and caught fish of every kind. And when the net was full, they dragged it up onto the shore, sat down and sorted the good fish into crates and threw the bad ones away. And that is how it will be at the end of the world.” So, if we look at that and break it down, if the kingdom of heaven is like a net that it is thrown into the water to fish, then it’s not a net that is for a specific kind of fish or a specific size of fish. The net will catch whatever fish that swim in altogether, all in the net. It all gets sorted out later. Or the example that Jesus used in, I think it was yesterday’s reading, about a field that was planted with good seed, but then others came into sort of diminish or destroy the crop and planted weeds all among the good seed. And this wasn’t discovered until everything started to sprout. And the servants asked the master, “should we pull up the weeds?” And the master said, “let them grow together so as not to destroy the crop. It’ll get sorted out in the harvest.” This is very interesting because it’s very inclusive. And we can read it now and go, “yeah, all are welcome. Yes, I get it.” But at the time that Jesus is giving these messages the Hebrew people, if we’re using the analogy, believe they are a specific kind of fish, a chosen fish, an exclusive fish. And, so, Jesus is beginning to lay out a disruptive message but He’s also laying out the fact that we’re not the ones that will be doing the sorting. And it seems as if we’re trying to major at sorting things out on behalf of God all the time when we’re not the ones that do the sorting. We are not the ones that will harvest and throw the weeds away, which is a supreme thing for us to remember. These messages that Jesus is giving begin to chip away at what people thought that they knew even the religious people thought that they knew what God wanted. Jesus’ message is that you’ve got it wrong. And, so, we see that although the people love to follow Jesus and to hear Jesus, the religious…the religious establishment is getting antsy about Him. And we’ll get the chance to watch that progress because we know where the story leads. The story leads, which is Jesus hanging on a cross being crucified, executed, in a horribly humiliating and painful way. And we will certainly be exploring that as we continue forward as well.
Father, we thank You for Your word. We thank You for bringing us this three weeks into this brand-new journey and we are grateful for all that we have read, all that we have contemplated, all that You are speaking to us through the Scriptures. And Holy Spirit we ask that You help us to hold onto these things. May they be planted in the soil of our lives. May there be harvest as we grow deeper in our love and understanding. We pray this in the name of Jesus our Savior. Amen.
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Also, reminding you of our other channels. The Daily Audio Proverb, which we’ve talked about a number of times as we were getting our journey going. Just a few minutes a day, just a couple of minutes a day to move through a chapter a day through the book of Proverbs, which allows us to move through the entire book of Proverbs each month. And this wisdom, the wisdom of the ages that has stood the test of time. So, pouring that into our hearts and lives…well…very helpful. When that stuff, that wisdom begins to bubble forth from within us as we deal with the issues of life, using wisdom as a category, as a guide in our life. So, Daily Audio Proverb. And there’s also Daily Audio Psalm. It’s like two minutes a day moving through the Psalms absorbing them, allowing ourselves to just kind of meditate on the beauty of some of the…the most beautiful literature the world has ever known, but also literature that speaks deeply into the soul of our experience. And, so, those are available. Check them out.
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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.
Community Prayer and Praise:
Hi DAB family this is Liza calling from the West Coast. I hope you’re doing well and happy new year to all of you. I’ve been praying for each of you. I can really use some prayers over my relationship with God and really my faith this year. I have been going through a lot of rejection both with job searching and also with dating. And, you know, I…I think something that I’ve really been learning from God is just that the only approval I need is from God not from, you know, a person or a company. And, so, I could just use some prayers over having the strength and kind of resilience and trust in God this year as I continue to search for a job, as I continue to, you know, look for my husband. And, so, I also could really use prayers that eventually sooner than later that I get out of this toxic company that I’m working for and find somewhere, you know, where I’m appreciated and valued and where I’m really able to be myself. And the same thing with meeting my husband. You know, I’m really exciting to find out who he is and meet him soon. And, so, I really could use your prayers that God just helps me remain faithful in the journey and that every person that I meet that I learn something from them. And also, I could continue to use prayers over my finances. I’m still in a lot of debt. And, you know, finding a job, part of that is also just finding something that can help me pay off all of my debt from student loans. And, so, just trust in God that with my finances and knowing that tithing and giving to others is part of my…the way that I spend my money. So, thank you for your prayers. I am praying for each of you. Have a great day.
Hey Daily Audio Bible family James the teacher. You know, I was listening to the January 16th podcast here on January 16th and getting caught up after a couple days behind and listening to people talking about getting through the Bible all the way for the first time in a year. And something struck me. This has happened to me a few times now but there have been situations where I’ve been in a church small group or talking with some believers and the subject of being familiar with the Bible comes up. And, you know, someone can ask me, “have you…have you read the Bible?” And I said, without trying to sound arrogant, “yeah…I’ve been through the Bible…I don’t know…gosh…at least 10 times.” And I’ve been a believer for coming up on 22 years. And that doesn’t make me special or superior, but I just realized because of this amazing resource this amazing community this is available and the support to stick with it is here every single day. This is honestly astonishing. And no, I…I haven’t learned everything there is to learn in the Bible by any stretch because the Word is living and active. That’s God. I don’t know all of God, but I’ve made my home here. And I just wanna welcome everyone in this community who’s visiting who’s new here. Welcome home. It’s your home in the Word. It’s your home in Jesus Christ. We love you. Welcome.
Hey guys it’s Marjorie from New Mexico. I’m just calling in for a prayer request from my mom. She’s 76 years old. She has bipolar disorder and she’s on medication for it and she’s been drinking. She’s been drinking quite a bit. I am her power of attorney for her medical needs and she's…when I’m not there she…she goes, and she buys alcohol, and the alcohol is counteracting the effects of her medication. So, she’s falling back into the bipolar disorder. And guys I’m worried about her because she’s also very fragile. She’s very skinny. She also has Crohn’s disease and she’s not stable on her feet when she’s not drinking. So, when she is she’s even worse. And I just dread the day that I find that something happened to her. So, I’m just asking you guys to cover her in prayer and ask the Lord to take this affliction away from her so that she…she can get well again. I love my mom and I don’t want anything bad to happen to her and I just feel at a loss. And I know that I have to give it to God. And I did but then I took it back. So, also pray for me to just leave it with Him because he knows the best. Thank you, DABbers. Love you all.
My dear dear Rosie it’s Susan from Canada God’s Yellow Flower calling in to pray for you. Dear Lord Jesus she’s been through so much that her heart is just heavy. It’s only You…only You can lift the burdens that she’s bearing. And we ask dear God that in Your precious and holy mercies that You would lift Rosie above the cares and troubles of the earth. Heal her heart dear God so she can soar with You. This heaviness is keeping her down. And we ask dear God that You would just lift it. Bring peace in her heart, bring fullness in her heart. Fill up the space with Your love that all her loved ones have left behind. And we ask dear God many blessings upon her as she turns to You for peace and joy and love. In Jesus…
Dear God, we lift up Rosie who has lost five family members. I pray that you would comfort that family Lord and that you will provide healing for them including Rosie in Jesus’ name. I also lift up the marriages Lord, the spouses who our doubting God, falling away, or that have not yet decided to follow you. Let us pray that You will move in their lives. I pray that You will speak to their spirits and that You will heal them. Open their eyes. Allow them to see You in new light through dreams or ideas or however You want to reveal Yourself Lord. In Jesus’ name. Amen.