Saturday, August 5, 2023

August 5, 2023

Moses saw the burning bush, and because it didn’t crumble from the fire, he drew closer to it. That’s when God spoke to him and identified himself as the great “I AM.” And God told him to show his reverence. Did you notice that Moses approached him first? He knew something was different about that fire and got closer to see what was happening. Take the time to reach out to God; he will speak to you just as he did Moses. However, notice that God expected Moses to revere him and humble himself before him. As you come to know God, if you don’t become respectful of him and understand how mighty he is, then you don’t know him well enough. Yes, he is loving, but he is also the most powerful!

And he said, Draw not nigh hither: put off thy shoes from off thy feet, for the place whereon thou standest is holy ground. Exodus 3:5

God has heard our cries as with the children of Israel and knows the burden the taskmasters have laid upon our backs. Though we may not all be processing bricks, we are working and laboring for a master who steals our money through taxes and gives to causes we don’t believe in. I believe he has sent a type of “Moses” to bring justice to his people, but he is not recognized as such. We should rejoice that the world is falling apart because we are not of this world; salvation is for the children of God, not the people of the world. As God sets our nation free, we will plunder the oppressors. Freedom and justice are just around the corner; God will deliver us!

And the LORD said, I have surely seen the affliction of my people which are in Egypt, and have heard their cry by reason of their taskmasters; for I know their sorrows; Exodus 3:7

Friday, August 4, 2023

August 4, 2023

A lot happened in Exodus 2. Moses was born, grew up, killed an Egyptian, escaped to Midian, got married, and had a son! To top it off, God heard the cries of grief from the Israelites over their bondage in Egypt. That is a lot of information in only 25 verses! 

Being a princess raised Moses, I expect he was well-educated in Egyptian culture. Anyone adopted into a family knows the ways of that family. God knew and was patient to wait for Moses to grow up and put him in situations to help train him for his purpose. Even killing the Egyptian within sight of some Israelites and making him run away to Midian was a step in his training. Though his reason for killing the Egyptian seemed noble because it helped his Israelite family, they were peaceful and didn’t see it the same way. 

Did you know that Moses had two sons? Each of them also had sons, so there is probably an entire lineage of Moses somewhere in this world. His wife, Zipporah, was the daughter of a priest. Jethro gave Moses Zipporah for saving his daughters from the shepherds driving them and their father’s flock away from the watering hole. 

Look at your past trials and remember what you learned from them. Consider that God may use them for his purpose in the future. Throughout my years of writing my daily devotionals, I have used issues from my past to drive a point and share my experience so others can learn from me. God will use you and your past for the good of others; commit to his will, and he will push you along.

Now when Pharaoh heard this thing, he sought to slay Moses. But Moses fled from the face of Pharaoh, and dwelt in the land of Midian: and he sat down by a well. Exodus 2:15

Thursday, August 3, 2023

August 3, 2023

God removed Joseph from his family early in his life by sending him to Egypt. Now we have Moses, who was removed and sent to Egypt because Pharaoh was killing all the male babies. Then you have Jesus, who was threatened to be killed as a baby by Herod. Herod knew the Messiah had been born, but God protected his family and sent them to Egypt. What is it about Egypt that is so special that it became part of the history of the most prominent saviors in biblical history? Joseph and Moses's lives were a living prophecy of the coming Messiah that would bring salvation to all people! 

Moses's mother knew there was something special about him, and rather than risk him being killed; she decided that it would be better to take a chance on Pharaoh's daughter finding him and hopefully have mercy on him. According to scripture, he was a goodly or fine child, so he was probably too cute to kill, and his mother knew the Egyptian princess couldn't resist him. Then she gave him back so his mother could nurse him. She must not have known it was his mother. Imagine that; his own mother got to raise him for a while and got paid for it. It's incredible how God works things out for the best. 

We can't see into the future, but God can. You can bet what happened to Moses's family destroyed them; they lost their son, and though he was saved from death, he was still taken away only to be raised by their enemy. Satan's plot had failed once again. His plot will fail in your circumstances too. It's just a matter of time; your story is not over. God rescues his children; you can count on it.

And Pharaoh's daughter said unto her, Take this child away, and nurse it for me, and I will give thee thy wages. And the woman took the child, and nursed it. Exodus 2:9

Wednesday, August 2, 2023

August 2, 2023

Though this may seem incomprehensible, we must realize that we will not be remembered for very long after our death. Think about it, you know your grandparents, but how well do you know your great-grandparents or great-great-grandparents? I know of mine, but I don't recall their personalities; they died before I could retain that information. 

The children of Israel were dealt harshly with, and the male children were threatened because the new Pharaohs in Egypt did not know how much good Joseph had done by saving their ancestors from starvation. So, when they saw their increase, the Egyptians felt threatened by them and decided to take action to try and decrease their numbers. It didn't work; God had another plan, and the children of Israel grew even more rapidly than before. When God's people are oppressed, their numbers increase exceedingly; it has been proven true throughout history. You cannot go against God and win. Compare this to what we see today, with the world's governments trying to decrease the influence of our Christian faith by blocking our voice from being heard to slow our numbers. It won't work. We can count on God to bring justice on our behalf. Wait for it; it will surely come. 

The main point that I want to make is to live for God. Everything you strived for your entire life will be forgotten by your family and friends not long after your death, but God will not forget! Our time is so short; do the things that will please God. Store up your treasures in Heaven!

But the more they afflicted them, the more they multiplied and grew. And they were grieved because of the children of Israel. Exodus 1:12

Tuesday, August 1, 2023

August 1, 2023

I’ve always loved Genesis, so I’m saddened to come to the last chapter. Going through it slowly and methodically has taught me more than I expected. Though I’ve read it many times, this time was the best. I will use my short commentary of each chapter to refer back to when I dig into the rest of the Old Testament; hopefully, I retained more than I lost.

Jacob’s family did as he asked and made the trip to bury him in Canaan. A whole caravan of his people went, leaving only the small children and the flocks and herds in Egypt. I’m guessing the servants stayed, watched the children, and fed the animals. 

Once again, the brothers became fearful of Joseph being their father was now dead. They feared he would deal harshly with them. It broke Joseph’s heart, and he cried as they shared their fear and pleaded for mercy. He had already forgiven them and praised God for his trials because it put him in the position to save many people from starvation. The things we’ve gone through help us through the next portion of our lives, and we must be grateful. We must also remember that Jesus has forgiven us of our sins. If it broke Joseph’s heart to hear them beg for mercy, imagine how Jesus feels when we keep bringing up our past sins that he has already forgiven and forgotten. Move on; get over it! Know that God is not holding your past against you and that you are indeed forgiven.

Before Joseph died, he instructed his family and said that God would visit them and tell them when it was time to leave Egypt to take possession of the land promised to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. When he died, the Egyptians embalmed Joseph and put him in a coffin, and as he instructed, the family kept his bones until they were freed from Egypt.

But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive. Now therefore fear ye not: I will nourish you, and your little ones. And he comforted them, and spake kindly unto them. Genesis 50:20-21

Monday, July 31, 2023

July 31, 2023

In Genesis 48, Jacob blesses Joseph’s sons and gives them an inheritance. Then in Genesis 49, before his last breath, he blesses and prophesies over his sons. He didn’t hold anything back; a few blessings seemed more like curses and a remembrance of their bad behavior. All I can say is thank God we are hidden in Jesus! Imagine what our life would be like if God saw all our failures rather than Jesus’s perfection when He looked at us; we receive God’s grace and mercy because of him. 

I wonder why Jacob blessed Joseph’s sons first. Is that significant? They are a part of the lost tribes. God is detailed; nothing is left undone; everything has a purpose and a meaning. Maybe we are linked to those tribes ancestrally. That would be fantastic, being Jacob was prophesying about the last days. Just a thought; only God knows.

Jacob also gives specific instructions that he should be buried in Canaan with his grandparents, Abraham and Sarah, his dad and mom, Isaac and Rebekah, and Leah, his wife. Isn’t it interesting that he chose to be buried with Leah rather than Rachel? Maybe he grew to love her over time since she became his first wife, though not by his choice. Nevertheless, he kept having children with her.  

God’s plans are perfect; don’t try to force your will into situations that God should handle. Relax; God’s got this!

And when Jacob had made an end of commanding his sons, he gathered up his feet into the bed, and yielded up the ghost, and was gathered unto his people. Genesis 49:33

Sunday, July 30, 2023

July 30, 2023

Before passing, Jacob blessed the sons of Joseph and adopted them as his own, treating them equally with his sons. He also gave Joseph an extra portion of inheritance above his brothers; what's interesting is that it was a land that he had conquered by sword and bow. Was this a repayment for what his brothers did to him by selling him? He cut his sons' inheritance by giving Ephraim and Manasseh a portion, but he also gave Joseph a more significant portion than his brothers. He may have also done that to ensure they wouldn't stay in Egypt and follow their dad's leadership there. If I'm right, Ephraim and Manasseh, once Joseph passed, probably inherited his portion too. So it didn't matter that Joseph's brothers were a part of the blessed people; they still had to pay for their misdeeds towards him, but they weren't cut off. We all still sin and do not have to face eternal consequences for those sins because of Jesus, but there may still be a price to pay here on earth, though maybe not as harsh as those who are not Christ-followers. You can bet the devil will eventually come to collect from those not part of God's family. 

The adoption: “And now thy two sons, Ephraim and Manasseh, which were born unto thee in the land of Egypt before I came unto thee into Egypt, are mine; as Reuben and Simeon, they shall be mine.” Genesis 48:5

The blessing: “And he blessed them that day, saying, In thee shall Israel bless, saying, God make thee as Ephraim and as Manasseh: and he set Ephraim before Manasseh.” Genesis 48:20 

The extra portion: “Moreover I have given to thee one portion above thy brethren, which I took out of the hand of the Amorite with my sword and with my bow.” Genesis 48:22