Today’s reading took us through the eras of Moses and Joshua and into the years of the judges. Reading a lot of Swahili (which was great) slowed things down, so reading time extended to 10 hours.
It is noteworthy that the frustrations of the Israelites in the desert, the unconquered nations in the Promised Land, and even God’s command to Abraham to sacrifice Isaac were all intended by the Lord to be a test of hearts. What might God be using to test the sincerity of my heart today?
God’s people ever had a mind of their own. But all choices had consequences. The theme of blessing and curses — blessings when people obeyed and disaster when they disobeyed — is so strong in these Old Testament books. The final appeal of both Moses and Joshua was the same: choose whom you will serve!
Even today, we have choices to make. So often we read the parts of the Bible that we enjoy: the blessings. But the curses are just as real. Blessings and curses come as a consequence of our actions. Yes, in the New Covenant we have forgiveness in Jesus, but the principle is the same: we are expected to live right.
We noticed that some things were repeated over and over:
- The 2½ vis-à-vis 9½ tribal allocations apparently required frequent explanation;
- The fact that the Levites did not receive an inheritance seemed to be a very big deal;
- The daughters of Zelophehad: Mahlah, Hoglah, Milcah, Tirzah and Noah, were mentioned soooo many times. I was not counting but must have read that list maybe 7 times.
On this journey through God’s Word, I continue to learn things that I have never noticed before!
- In KJV, what did God (through Moses) call “new arrivals?” (sounds like a Walmart ad!)
- What did Abimelech do to the city of Shechem after he captured it?