GETTING THE MOST FROM GOD'S WORD:

"Do NOT labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to everlasting LIFE..." - The Gospel of John 6:27 (NKJV)
A systematic and daily reading of the Word of God is important in maintaining a strong Christian life. Establish a daily quiet time with God and His Word. Pray that the Holy Spirit will help you understand what you read. By following our daily Bible reading schedule through this blog, you will be able to read the Bible through in a year. Please note that you may utilize the ‘BIBLE READER’ app that is installed at the bottom of this webpage to assist you in reading the specified scripture portion for today.

To get the MOST from God's Word, please do the following intentionally:
1. REQUEST God to connect with you as you read the word of God with FOCUS and OPENNESS to see what God wants to speak with you.
2. READ the selected sections of Scripture slowly as you mark the words and phrases that intrigue you, even reading them the second time to get a better understanding.
3. REFLECT on what God is communicating to you; stopping long enough to let the seed of God's Word take root in your heart.
4. RESPOND to the passage speaking directly to God about what is in your heart, and then look out for ways to live out what you find - individually, and to others within your church and elsewhere.

As you read and meditate, ask yourself the following three questions:
a) What is God speaking to me through this passage?
b) Is there a command, a promise or a warning for me?
c) Is there an example for me to follow?

Please POST your comments below if there is a thought or message that the Lord has spoken to you through the passage that you are reading and meditating today. Please make sure that your post is aligned to the scripture passage mentioned at the header. All comments should pertain to the relevant scripture portions only, and should be aimed to glorify God (the true author of 'The Bible') & edify everyone who visits this blog site daily - both young and old. May God bless you abundantly for encouraging others through your comments!

Let's PRAY...
LORD, give me the desire to take a little time out of my busy schedule today as I read and meditate on Your Word. Give me this day MY DAILY BREAD. Speak to me clearly & lead me today as my Good Shepherd. Help me to be a blessing to others who interact with me as I attempt to be a living witness of Your Word today. In Your Name I pray, AMEN.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

January 17 Bible Reading: Genesis Chapters 49-50

God WILL strengthen us to FACE every TROUBLE: "Joseph is a fruitful bough, a fruitful bough by a well; his branches run over the wall. The archers have bitterly grieved him, shot at him and hated him. But his bow remained in strength, and the arms of his hands were made strong by the hands of the Mighty God of Jacob (from there is the Shepherd, the Stone of Israel)" (Gen 49:22-24)

Joseph stands before us as a model of extraordinary fidelity to God even from his young age. It was no fault of his that he was born to the beloved wife (Rachel) of his father Jacob. His father loved him over all his brothers and gifted him with a tunic of many colors to display that love (Gen. 17:3). However, his brothers envied (v. 11) and hated him (v. 4b, 8b), and would not even speak nicely to him (v. 4b). When they got a chance, they sold him to slavery (v. 28), and reported falsely to their father with his blood-stained tunic. In Egypt, Joseph was delivered to prison being falsely accused of making sexual advances to Potiphar’s wife (Gen. 39). He was shackled and incarcerated for over two years until he was released from prison, and finally became a person of authority in Egypt.

Through all the troubles that Joseph had in his life, the one reason he could hold on was because “the arms of his hands were made strong by the hands of the Mighty God of Jacob” (Gen. 49:24). God gave Joseph extraordinary strength and fortitude to withstand all the troubles that he faced from the people near and dear to him, finally becoming a “fruitful bough” with “branches running over the wall”. Even though Joseph was attacked by envy, revenge, temptation, and ingratitude, yet by the grace of God he triumphed over all opposition and became the sustainer of Israel. The history of the tribes of Ephraim and Manasseh (Joseph's sons) shows how fully the blessings of Jacob were realized in Joseph’s future generations as well (see Num. 1:33-35; Josh. 17:17; Deut. 33:17). Great men of God like Joshua, Gideon and Prophet Samuel could be counted among the famous descendents of Joseph!

God gave Joseph extraordinary wisdom and insight to interpret the dreams of the butler, the baker and Pharaoh. God also gave him excellent managerial capabilities to manage Potiphar’s household, the prison and even the kingdom of Egypt. The thoughtful decisions of Joseph in managing the food distribution of Egypt saved not only the Egyptians alive, but spared his own family from starvation and annihilation. In the end, Joseph could say with confidence to his brothers that even though they meant evil, "but God meant it for good, in order to bring it about as it is this day, to save many people alive." (Gen 50:20)

Let us understand that God will strengthen us to face every trouble that we encounter in our lives, and make our lives to be fruitful and successful as well. To do that we need to delight in God’s Word, meditate in it continuously and follow the directions that God gives us every day (Psalms 1:2). To be fruitful, we need to abide in Christ and let His Word abide in us (John 15:5, 7). Then, God will make our way prosperous and like Joseph, we too will have ‘good success’ in our lives!

"This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success." (Josh 1:8)

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