2 Kings 17:1-18:12, Acts 20:1-38, Psalm 148:1-14, Proverbs 18:6-7
Today is the 30th day of June, welcome to the Daily Audio Bible. I’m Brian. It’s wonderful to be here with you today, around the Global campfire for the next step forward. And wow, it’s the 30th of June, which means it is the final day of the sixth month of the year. I guess we are about as close to the halfway mark, in terms of months, that we can get. And so, let’s enjoy being here, kind of stretch our arms and it’s been a bit of a journey, all of the things that we’ve gone through in the last half of the year, not only in the Scriptures, but in our lives and in applying the Scriptures to our lives, so that we might continually be transformed. It’s been a journey. And so, here we are kinda stretching her legs and moving around a little bit and enjoy the fact that we made here, kinda at the halfway point now. So much as happened in the Scriptures, so much is out in front of us, what an exciting journey to be on together. My heart is just full of gratitude right now that we even get to do this together, day-by-day, step-by-step. But the only way this works, is if we take the next step and so, let’s do that and dive back in. In the Old Testament we are in the book of second Kings, kinda moving through different summaries of the kings and the different things that happened. Let’s find out what happens today, second Kings chapter 17 verse 1 through 18 verse 12.
Okay so, in the book of second Kings, again, so many times when really important things happen, it’s understated in the Bible like, when major prophets that we’re moving along with for a long time die, right, we’ve already seen as the Bible is…is like and then they died, for the most part. And so, it’s really interesting that something profound happened in today’s reading. We read it and we probably know, but it’s understated, again. The northern kingdom of Israel at this point, going forward now, after today’s reading, the northern kingdom of Israel, those 10 tribes, are gone, never to come back. Like, the 10 tribes were deported and carried into exile and were assimilated and never returned. They disappeared from history. Israel is over. All that’s left of the people that we’ve traveled for six months to get into the Promised Land, all that’s left is the kingdom of Judah, which indeed includes the city, the holy city, of Jerusalem and the Lord’s temple. But the northern kingdom and its capital, Samaria, was captured and the people sent away. And when people were sent away, other conquered peoples were brought into the land to live there, which was Empire building, at the time. Conquer a people, deport them from their homeland, make them settle in a land that has already been conquered, so, it’s a foreign land and here’s your stuff and make a life here. And they just kept switching people around, so that as the generations went by there is no connection to a homeland anymore. There is a connection to the entire Empire, in this case it’s the Assyrian Empire. So, that’s what happened. The Hebrew people were deported, people from all kinds of other places were brought in. It wasn’t going well, lions were attacking the people in they’re sending word to the authorities like, we need to know how to worship the God of this land because we don’t know about the God of this land, we only know about our own gods and we’re worshiping our own gods. But the God of this land seems to be upset. And so a priest is sent back to begin to instruct the people in the ways of the Lord. And as we read from the Bible, they did fear the Lord, but they also feared and worshiped their own gods, the gods of the lands that they had come from. So, over time things get fairly well discombobulated. The land of Israel had already been led away by Jeroboam, son of Nebat, right, the first king of Israel, after the kingdom divided into two kingdoms. They were led into idolatry. And so, their customs and forms of worshiping Yahweh were increasingly different than those in the kingdom of Judah. And now, we have all these people deported and new people brought into the land and a priest instructing them in the ways of the Lord. But there are all so intertwining all of that, with the customs from their own lands, and the worship of their own gods from their own lands. If you go in that direction and continue to move toward the New Testament, you find out that these people become known as Samaritans, after the capital city of Samaria. And so, when we read through the Gospels, we can see pretty clearly that Samaritans are not people who are to be trusted, they are frowned upon. They are considered other and, in some cases, they are the enemy. They are just, you are to hold them suspicious, they worship weird, it’s all messed up. They’re not true. And we see that, in the Gospels. And then, then we see Jesus making a Samaritan the hero of the story of the good Samaritan. Or we see Jesus talking to a Samaritan woman, telling her, her life story and Samaritans flocking to Jesus to believe. So, it’s interesting to look back and go, that’s how we got there. So, it went from this, to that and Israel is gone. Like, it’s hard to even imagine. At this point, as we’re reading this, in second Kings, there isn’t in Israel anymore. There is the kingdom of Judah. But the 10 tribes are gone forever. These people had been freed from slavery in Egypt and brought into the wilderness, where they were to learn utter dependence upon God. God had come through on his promises and given them the land that was promised to them and it just, it all fell apart. And there is so much for us to consider. But one of the things important for us to consider, is that walking this path of faith and trust in God, requires vigilance. It requires that we are actually paying attention and we all know this. If we stop paying attention, we drift and we start right away and start sliding, sliding, sliding, that’s how it goes. And so, vigilance is so important on the faith journey. What we see here with…with the removal of Israel, is that had broken down pretty much altogether. They began to vigilantly serve many god’s and this is where the road leads, this is where that goes. This is, this is God’s chosen people right, that He brought into this land. So, let’s not think that it doesn’t apply to us. These are God’s chosen people that have been removed and disappeared from history. And it wasn’t because God woke up on the wrong side of the bed. It was because he had chosen and they had rejected and that’s a big ouch. Because we do it too. So, that is something for us to sit with, specially here, while we’re kind of stretching our legs, at the halfway point of the year. There’s something for us to consider.
And so, Holy Spirit, we invite You into that. We do understand that we take our eyes off of You, we start moving in all, different directions, any number of different directions. And then, when we wake up and pay attention to where we are we realize, we’ve drifted far away and that can be just the nature of our lives, that can be the whole story, back and forth, back and forth, back and forth. But what could our life look like, if we were aware and vigilant and walking with You wherever you are leading, every day for our whole lives. What could become of us, if we actually went all in and never wavered. We want to know the answer to that question. Come, Holy Spirit, and lead us into all truth. We pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.
dailyaudiobible.com is home base and that’s you find what’s going on around here and there are things going on around here. So, one week from today is the Daily Audio Bible Long Walk, our own little holiday, something that we do around the Global Campfire each year. If I have counted, well I can’t remember, it’s well over a decade, that we’ve been doing this, every seventh of July. And it is a day, that we just set aside on the calendar, recognizing we’re in the middle of the year, recognizing that it’s been pretty chaotic, recognizing that we could use a breather, recognizing that we could use a breather with God. Understanding that we can set the trajectory of the, of the rest of the year with God, knowing that He’s very, very interested and go for a long walk. Share everything that’s been going on and allow the Holy Spirit to lead and guide us, in the way that we should go. And that’s a very solitary, beautiful, devotional thing to do, spend the day with God and set up the second half of your year, that’s awesome, but it’s also really fun to be aware that no matter where we are, no matter how far out in the wilderness we think we are, enjoying beauty, our brothers and sisters all over the world are enjoying the beauty of God’s creation, at the same time. So, we put a post on the Facebook page at the…the Daily Audio Bible Facebook page, so that you can come back and share pictures, share stories, share videos from your journey. And that is, sort of like a double blessing. We go enjoy the day but then we can come back and look through all the different windows, into the different people’s lives that have participated and see the beauty of the earth, all on the same day, all over the world. So, make plans for that. That’s one week from today.
The other thing that’s going on right now, as we have announced, just a few days ago, our intention to return to the land of the Bible in 2023. So, we’ll be going back to Israel February 6 through the 19th of 2023. And going on another pilgrimage, through the land of the Bible, connecting the stories found in the Scriptures to the places that they happened and the profound change that comes from it. So, if that’s something that’s on your bucket list or something the you’ve been waiting for, now would be the time to check that out. You can check it out at dailyaudiobible.com, look for the initiatives section and you’ll find Israel, 2023 there. If you’re using the app, you can press the drawer icon in the upper left-hand corner and when the drawer opens up, you’ll find the initiatives section there, press that button and you’ll find Israel, 2023. Or you can go to dailyaudiobibleIsrael.com and that will get you there, as well. So, check that out. Very much anticipating and looking forward to seeing you. Well, the first time we’ll get to see each other would be on the Mediterranean Coast, right on the ocean, in the ancient Philistine city of Ashdod, as we prepare to begin our journey. So, we’ll look forward to seeing you there, you can check it out, well, you can check it out where I just said, so check it out.
If you want to partner with the Daily Audio Bible, if what’s happening here brings life and good news and hope to you, then thank you for your partnership, as we move through summertime, thank you. There is a link on the homepage at dailyaudiobible.com. If you’re using the app, you can press the Give button, in the upper right-hand corner, or the mailing address is P.O. Box 1996 Springhill, Tennessee 37174.
And as always if you have a prayer request or encouragement, you can hit the Hotline button in the app, that’s the little red button up at the top, or you can dial 877-942-4253.
And that’s it for today, I’m Brian, I love you, and I’ll be waiting for you here, tomorrow.
Prayer and Encouragements:
Good day, Daily Audio Bible family. It’s been a very long time. This is Pamela, the pastor’s wife/teacher, from Huntington, New York. Thank God, I’m still listening. It’s been, oh my goodness, at least 13 to 14 years. I’ve been reading through the Bible. I thank God for Pastor Brian and his lovely wife Jill and all of you, my brothers and sisters in Christ. I was just listening and I heard Clarabell, calling from United Kingdom, I believe. And your story touched me. I can relate to your story. I was able to conceive children, but I wasn’t able to hold them. I had an incompetent cervix. So, I had to have a procedure done every time I got pregnant and I would have to stay in bed the entire pregnancy. So, I understand your feeling and what you’re going through. I lost two children, prior to receiving, there’s three, that the Lord has blessed me. So, just be encouraged. I want you to know I’m praying for you. And I want to leave you with Psalm 113:9 - He gives the childless woman a family, making her a happy mother. Praise the Lord. Be blessed.
Hi, this is Victorious Soldier. I wanted to just pray for some of the DABers. I wanted to pray for LauraBell who has been, she and her husband have been trying to have the baby and vasectomy work through. I’m with you LauraBell, I believe in miracles and I’m praying that God work a miracle, just like He did with me. God blessed us with a child and I was almost in my forties. And God can do anything but fail. Gracious Father, I just ask You to have Your way Lord, in LauraBell’s life and those who are trying to receive, to have a baby, Lord, we just ask You to open up the womb. We just ask You to bless, we just ask You to open up the doors and bless with this precious baby. You have a precious baby who You have a purpose and a plan for their life and they need a precious parent that’ll love them and that will be there for them. And we just ask You to have Your way. We just ask You to have Your way and continue to do what You do because You’re a God that never changes and nothing is too hard for You. And Lord, we will give You the glory and the honor and the praise. And we want to also, want to pray for, someone who has been diagnosed with Hodgkin’s a brother who was diagnosed with Hopkins disease, we just ask You for a healing, Lord. We just ask You for Devine healing in his body, Lord, and we ask You to have Your way. In the name of Jesus. And the one who has Leukemia, we just ask You to heal. I know that nothing’s impossible for You. And we just ask You to have Your way. In Jesus name. Bless you DABers, bless China and bless Brian and all the people of God and bless our Long Walk Day, Lord. Bless it that it’ll be a blessing, that it be a day that we’ll remember for You and remember how You bless us on this 7th
Good morning, all, Daily Audio Bible friends and family. This is Theresa in Tampa, Florida. And I heard a prayer request today from Travis in Alberta, Canada, who is doing ministry. And Travis, you just touched my heart, today. I just want to give you words of encouragement. I really feel in my heart that God has great things for you. And just believe in yourself, know that God’s got you. God will make you do great things. Never doubt yourself, you are a true inspiration. You are doing the right thing. And you are going to achieve all of God’s goals for yourself. Have faith, never lose faith. Give it to God and you will do great things. God Bless you Travis.
Hi, DAB family, this is Jessica from California. Today, I’m calling in for Thomas. He called on the 28th podcast and I just know that he’s struggling with all these questions and all the different people telling him different things. And he’s afraid that if he gets off track that he’ll lose the job that God has for him. And that’s not true. That’s not true, Thomas. He who began a good work in you will continue it on until the day of Jesus Christ. And also, He wouldn’t have even begun the good work, if He didn’t call you to Him. And, yeah, maybe if you’re not ready, there could have been a potential work or a job that you could have done. But don’t think that God’s not working on you, every single day of your life. And he will find a new job for you, a more proper job or you know, you just gotta keep your eyes forward and keep looking to the future and trusting and believing God, that He has your best interest and He loves you with an everlasting love. I just wanted to encourage you, Thomas, to not be a doubting Thomas but be a believing, Thomas. And also, I love the name Thomas, that’s my father’s name and I just hope and pray and wish that you can find the joy of the Lord and you will continue on and get through this rough patch. And don’t be scared to love God, I mean, He’s the creator of the universe, He created you, He created everything. You should rest securely in His love and His all-powerful hands. In Jesus name. Talk to you later, Thomas. Have a good one. I believe in you. Take care.
Good morning, this is John Ransom from Budapest. And I wanted to respond to Thomas, Thomas who called in right after wonderful woman, wonderful sister in Christ, just gave him amazing, and all of us amazing advice and just wise counsel about running the race. Thomas, thanks for calling in. I wanted to share a poem that I wrote in a very difficult time, very similar to what you’re describing of uncertainty and just a lack of clarity, from 2003 and I hope it blesses you. It’s called victory.
This too is victory, muddled, fearful, tired, truthful, hoping,
Loving You, seeking You, unwilling to say no to the cross
Captured by such love, overwhelmed by such mercy
And understanding and compassion far greater than any hymns have yet revealed
Your loving eyes, see my heart, Your strong embrace breaks my fall
Your caress moves back my hair, as you say softly, shhhhhh
Rest in me. What counts is joy, my joy, is your strength
For you with your faith have overcome the world