1 Samuel 2:22-4:22, John 5:24-47, Psalms 106:1-12, Proverbs 14:30-31
Today is the 8th day of May. Welcome to the Daily Audio Bible I’m Brian it is wonderful to be here with you today as we approach the end of another week. And we’re approaching the end of the first full week of this month and…yeah…we’re continuing to move forward, step-by-step, day by day. This is…this is what we do. What a difference it makes to have this rhythm of life here together around the Global Campfire every day one step forward. So, we…we…we stepped into the book of first Samuel today and we talked about that yesterday but just by way of quick reminder, Samuel was the final judge of Israel. So, we read the book of Judges and now we are in first Samuel. He served…he’s just a little kid right now where we are in the story, but he served as Israel’s final judge bringing them into the age or era of the monarchy where they had a king and we’ll get to that over the coming days. Right now, we’re just getting to meet everybody. Hannah Samuel’s mother was childless, and she prayed at Shiloh before the Lord and Shiloh was the capital, like the tabernacle was permanently situated there for almost 4 centuries long, long, long before there was ever a temple in Jerusalem. And, so, she’s there and she’s praying and God gives her a son and she dedicates him to God and his name is Samuel and she brings him back to Shiloh and gives him to the priest, Eli, who is beginning to train him along with his own…his own children, his own sons Hophni and Phinehas and there is a stark contrast between Eli’s biological sons and the one that he’s kind of raising up in the temple Samuel and we’ll see that more and more clearly as the days go by. So, we’re reading from the New Living translation this week. Today, first Samuel chapter 2 verse 22 through 4 verse 22.
Okay. So, Jesus is having a conversation with the religious leaders and they’re questioning Him and wanting to know about His authority, all these things that…that are common as we moved our way through the Gospels Jesus is having this discussion with them and He tells them some very poignant things today. And one of the things that He…He says is just…man…like it goes right to the heart. At least it goes to my heart when we pass this territory because it’s like I’m guilty of the same thing. I’ve done the same thing for years and yet Jesus is giving immense clarity. So, speaking to these people Jesus says, “you search the Scriptures because you think they give you eternal life, but the Scriptures point to me, yet you refuse to come to me to receive this life.” So, honestly, like if I’m just going back into a part of my story, for me…I’m a Pastor’s son. I grew up around the Bible but before the Daily Audio Bible ever began, I just, you know, realized I’m a mile wide and an inch deep. There is no depth to this faith whatsoever. I’m not even sure its real. And, so, I turned to the Scriptures, as I should have, as we should and I, you know, spent like the next decade giving my all to the study of the Scriptures. And it’s not like I don’t give my all to that every day now. I study the Scriptures every day, but what I was looking for was God. Like, what I was looking for was how to understand God and I thought that the more I could know these Scriptures the more I could know God, only to find out the Scriptures are there to point the way to God. They can’t become God. The Bible isn’t God. And yet, the Pharisees and scribes of the time, they’re studying the Torah, they’re studying the Scriptures of their time, they’re trying to obey them as best as they can, they’re trying to control everybody else to get them to do the same thing and they had become God. Like the plot of the story had been lost and we’ve mentioned this many times in the Old Testament. We’re like there’s the spirit of the law and the letter of the law. And this is what Jesus is getting at here. That’s when He says, “you search the Scriptures because you think they give you…they give you eternal life, but the Scriptures point to me, yet you refuse to come to me to receive this life.” And then He goes on, “your approval means nothing to me because I know you don’t have God’s love within you. I came in my Father’s name and you rejected me, but if people come around in their own name and…and…and toot their own horn ten you gladly welcome them. No wonder you can’t believe. You…you honor each other. You gladly honor each other but you don’t care about the honor that comes from the one who is God alone.” And then He goes on, “yet it isn’t I who will accuse you before the Father, Moses will accuse you.” So, why is He referring to Moses?” Because they are studying the Mosaic law and trying to flesh it out and…and…and use it to control the people. And Moses teachings for them are the Scriptures. So, He’s basically saying, “the Bible is gonna condemn you because it showed you the way…it told you about me and you still don’t believe it.” And that is entirely possible. I mean there are fantastic biblical and cultural scholars who do nothing for a profession outside of studying the times of the Bible and don’t believe it. We can know the Bible back-and-forth and not know God. And knowing everything that there is to know or that you can know about someone doesn’t mean you’re in a relationship with them. Trying to wrestle through that and this particular Scripture was one of the inspiring things about that, you know, led me to write the book Reframe and really explore, “what is…what are we talking about when we’re talking about a relationship with God?” And, so, this leaves us with some things to think about today. Like are…are we studying the Scriptures so that they will draw us deeper into a relationship with God or are we studying the Scriptures to find out what we’re supposed to do? Are we studying the Scriptures and calling that a relationship? And then we just have to think about whether that could work in any other relationship in our lives. If like, say you’re married, could you just read about your spouse and call that a relationship or do you have to actually offer yourself completely? Like do you have to open yourself? Do you have to be present and offer your presence in order for a relationship to happen? In so many ways this is what Jesus is telling the religious leaders and they won’t listen. Like we know that, but they don’t listen, they don’t have the eyes to see that Jesus keeps talking about. And stepping into a relationship with Jesus means that, yes, we study the Scriptures. We do this every single day, but the Scriptures will lead us to a leap of faith and that leap of faith will be beyond, it will be into what we don’t understand. We are talking about the most-high God after all. But it’s not faith if you control it. By definition faith is reaching out for…for what we cannot see but we do perceive. It gives substance to what we hope for and the Bible leads us to understand that reality. So, we have to wonder in our own lives, “what is it that I am calling my relationship with God? Is it doing everything that I think I should do? Is it devoting devotional time each and every day?” These things can be part of it but when we’re studying God and not being with God, then that’s not a relationship by any definition. So…so that’s…that gives us some things to think about. But then we can think, “well I’ve been going about this maybe in the wrong way. And, you know, how…how do I find that…that sweet spot?” Listen, God for sure will take us where we are and lead us forward from that place or this place. He wants to be in a relationship with us, one that we are intertwined in, one that we collaborate in, one…one that we do life together in. We’ve been reading the stories of the Bible and God will not give up. Like, if we if we have learned anything so far, He won’t stop. He might get exasperated. He might punish even. But He will not give up. He will not stop coming. So, it’s not like we gotta figure this out and get ready. It’s that we gotta take a leap of faith and believe, which is the message of Jesus. Or let me just…let me just use the words of Jesus instead of my own words. Let me just read from our reading in the Gospel of John. “The father who sent Me has testified about Me Himself. You have never heard His voice or seen him face-to-face and you do not have His message in your hearts because you do not believe Me, the One He sent to you.” So, you see, we can become all the scholars that we want and still not know God and we can have no scholarly training and leap into His arms and have a relationship. Right now, what I desire more than anything is to just be in His lap instead of in the laboratory trying to figure Him out. I have found that it is a whole lot easier to figure out somebody that you know than it is trying to study somebody at a distance.
Father, that is our desire. It’s built into us. We long for You. Life pulls us toward You. We can’t do it without You although we try all the time. Ironically, You want this. You want us even more. You were willing to come for us and give Your life for us. You want this relationship and yet we muddy it up with all kinds of things all the time. When, no matter what, it all comes back to a leap of faith. And, so, Holy Spirit, strengthen our faith that we might walk in Your will and Your ways, that we might live in a dynamic, always on, never off relationship with You. We pray this in the name of Jesus. 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.
Community Prayer and Praise:
Diane from Newburgh Indiana this is an infantryman from Georgia. I just wanted to let you know you that you sang a song from Mr. Rogers that was aired on the April 27th podcast. And let me tell you, I was on the way to work as a military and essential employee during the COVID-19 response in Georgia and I just want to let you know that I was listening to that podcast on the way to work on just another one of many groundhog days over the past 45 days where we’re confronted with the need to go into work with so many sheltering at home and so many dealing with the economy as it is and all the stresses that come with that. Anyways, I found my 40-year-old combat arms military self, singing along with you and bawling my eyes out to Mr. Rogers lyrics as I was passing through base security and heading to the joint force headquarters. Now I’ve served overseas in combat in Afghanistan and I’ve been employed in response operations at home from Hurricane Katrina to COVID-19 and I’ve not felt this appreciated for my service in spite of all the overtures so as such until your simple musical tribute which resonated with my childhood. And I just wanted to say thank you from a soldier of war to a soldier of faith.
Good morning Daily Audio Bible this is Debbie in Texas, it’s Sunday, May 3rd. This is my first time calling in. I’ve been listening since January. I think my story is so much like everyone else’s. Just so appreciative of Brian and his ministry and his family’s ministry to reach out to all of us. I can’t remember everyone’s names as I’m trying to recall this and record this and I’m nervous. So, I pray for all of you along with the prayer requests and I just ask that maybe you would just also say a prayer for me. Really too much to go into and just not super comfortable anyway saying what’s going on in my life. But anyway, huge changes. So, I thank you. I lift you all up and I hope you all have a great day. Thank you. Bye.
Hi this is May 3rd, and this is Sam and I’m calling from Barcelona Spain and my prayer is for the gentleman that called today regarding his mother in New York being confined with coronavirus. I want to pray for her. And as a coronavirus survivor I know it means to be cooped up in a very small room for 20 days. So, praying for your mother and for your family. Dear Lord, You are the giver of life and the taker of life and You have the whole world in Your hands and under Your control. So, we thank You for those that You provide and grant salvation and healing from this virus. And for those that You do not Father, we ask that You give them comfort, that You give them light, that You give them years to hear Your voice and Your word and Your message of hope and eternal life. And I’m praying for this mother that is having difficulties being confined Lord. And I pray that You send her understanding, that You send her peace, and that You surround her with a great support group that would be able to withstand this time. In the name of the Lord Jesus. Amen.
Fear is not my friend. Fear is not my friend. It is __ worm tongue hissing in my ear pretending to protect me while feeding off my pain. What a sick and twisted codependency. It has left me small and hard and gray. Fear has been my counselor for a long time, but I’ve finally seen through its slithering disguise. I have divorced fear and its poisonous comfort, and I will resist and reject every attempt it makes to worm its way back into my affections. I have a new comforter now the spirit of adoption. Daddy. Daddy, my heart cries and He answers with truth. There is so much joy and beauty ahead Cherry. He isn’t pretending. He sees. He knows. “What if” used to torment me, now what widens my eyes with wonder.
Sweet Elijah from May the 3rd, I just want you to know my love that it is okay to lean on others when you’re feeling struggles and temptations all around you. Satan is like that. He likes to get in and try to trip us up and first he’ll…he’ll make it seem okay and then we need to…when you follow him, he’ll say, “see, God’s not gonna want you now. See, what do you do that for? Now you’re not such a good Christian.” But I want to tell you something, God loves you no matter what. And every time you get a thought or temptation, if you just kind of quickly close your eyes really quick and say, “Lord I can’t handle the situation, can you please help me?” And you know what? Jesus promised in His word that He will do that, that any time we call upon Him He will step in and He will help us, He will give us a way out. So, you just keep praying, you keep coming back here for support, keep reminding us that you need us to pray for you and we certainly will. I know this is a hard time right now. It’s a hard time to be growing up but things will get better because God loves you and He will do everything He can to keep you safe. I’m gonna put you in my prayer book and I’m gonna pray for you every time I pray for my grandchildren and my children. And I just want you to know that you are His precious child, His precious gift. You take care my darling and any time at all you…you call here and tell us what’s going on. This is Paula Living on the Rock standing…
Oh wow…rejoice with me Daily Audio Bible family of God. Thank you for your prayers. Early this morning my third grandchild was born, and mama is doing great. Dada’s doing great. We went and picked up little baby number three’s brothers and brought them home and they stayed the night last night and we were notified via text that all is well. So, thank you for praying. So grateful, so grateful. Please welcome Valentine is his name, into this world. God bless You all. Lord God shower down a blessing upon all the women that have a desire in their heart to be a mother Father God. I pray Lord God that You would bless them in Your favor and grant them this gift in Jesus’ precious and holy name. And bless all the mothers with toddlers and bless all our children Father God of every age. We love them dearly and we are Your children God and we are so grateful. Praise You Lord. Praise You Lord Jesus’ name. Amen. This is Treasured Possession. God bless you.
Good morning been a listener since January 15th, and
I’ve needed it so much to just keep my anxiety low and my sadness high and it’s
really helped to encourage me. And I finally had to call in. There’s been something
on my heart since then and I thank you Walta, Walta the burning bush that will
not be devoured for the glory of our God and King a week ago, Saturday on the community
prayer talked about generational transference and I’m in the middle of that
right now. My son is 19. He was diagnosed with muscular dystrophy when he was
six and it’s been very difficult for me to handle but the __ it was more
important than, you know, Jesus above anything and here at 19 he’s claiming to
be an atheist and agnostic and my heart is broken. And Walta thank you for
praying for our children. You mentioned about that we take our kids to church
and they watch and do what they see us do. And he’s been at church since he was
born and now, he wants to do things his way and God is not a part of that. So,
I do pray for that generational transference, that he will connect to Jesus,
that God will be an option for him to long, thirst, understand and be in love
with Him. So, I’m just thankful that you encourage me to call in. My name is
Carrie, his name, his Jared and I pray that God, it has to be the Holy Spirit
that’s only going to work in his heart to save him. So, thank you Walta for
encouraging me and I pray that everybody will pray for my son. It’s pretty
heartbreaking. This is the worst blow then really the diagnosis of muscular