"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, September 24, 2013

September 24 Bible Reading: Obadiah Chapter 1

What we DO unto OTHERS will be DONE to us ONE DAY! "For the day of the Lord upon all the nations is near; as you have done, it shall be done to you; your reprisal shall return upon your own head. For as you drank on my holy mountain, so shall all the nations drink continually; yes, they shall drink, and swallow, and they shall be as though they had never been." (Ob. 1:15-16)

“The vision of Obadiah” (1:1) is the shortest book in the Old Testament and the third shortest book in the entire Bible. The theme of this book is ‘God’s judgment and ultimate destruction of the people of Edom’ who were the descendants of Jacob’s twin brother Esau. God’s standard of judgment for the nations was based on His original promise to Abraham: “I will bless those who bless you and whoever curses you I will curse” (Gen. 12:3). In this regard, Edom symbolized all nations that had attacked and persecuted the people of Israel. Throughout history the Edomites had constantly fought against Israel and demonstrated their contempt for the chosen people.

Matthew Henry in his commentary of this book paints the strong emotions that form the backdrop for Obadiah’s short prophecy: "Some have well observed that it could not but be a great temptation to the people of Israel, when they saw themselves, who were the children of beloved Jacob, in trouble, and the Edomites, the seed of hated Esau, not only prospering, but triumphing over them in their troubles; and therefore God gives them a prospect of the destruction of Edom, which should be total and final, and of a happy issue of their own correction." 

Obadiah highlights the inevitability of God’s just judgment upon all who fight against Him and His people. Through His prophet, God announced to these nations: “As you have done, it will be done to you” (v. 15). The day of God’s wrath on the nations was near, and Edom would be punished for her treatment of Judah. Their treatment of God’s people would determine how He would treat them. God would not merely pick out Edom for an example but would equally judge all nations for their sins. Just as these enemies “drank on my holy mountain” (profaning God’s temple), so God said He would make them “drink continually” from His divine cup of judgment.

The prophets looked for God’s intervention on “the day of the Lord” to establish perfectly His rule and His justice on earth, and this day is mentioned eleven times in verses 8-14. The “day of the Lord” refers to the day when God will intervene actively in the affairs of humanity and all creation, in both blessing and judgment. This day of divine retribution will destroy all God’s enemies and vindicate His people, through whom He will execute judgment. On this day Jehovah will manifest himself as the righteous Judge of all ungodly people (see Joel 3:14).

Now all the nations will be forced to drink a bitter cup of divine judgment (see Jer. 25:15, 16). The Edomites who invaded Jerusalem drank and caroused on God’s Holy Mountain after the city had been plundered, desecrating holy territory. The authority of the Lord cannot be flaunted without dire consequences. The measure of divine justice will be in keeping with how Edom had participated in Judah’s destruction - Edom will later became extinct and disappear in the pages of history (vv. 9-10, 18).

Let us remember that like in the case of Edom, what we do unto others will be done to us one day! This was exactly what Jeremiah had prophesied against Babylon: "Repay her according to her work; according to all she has done, do to her" (Jer. 50:29). This is the law of God: "Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap" (Gal. 6:7). There is no escape from the consequences of our actions. So, instead of scheming and doing evil unto others, let us intentionally do good to others: "Therefore, whatever you want men to do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets" (Matt. 7:12). Starting today, let us follow the golden rule expounded by our Lord Jesus Christ: "And just as you want men to do to you, you also do to them likewise" (Luke 6:31).

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