15 Now they were also bringing [even] babies to Him that He might touch them, and when the disciples noticed it, they reproved them.16 But Jesus called them [the parents] to Him, saying, Allow the little children to come to Me, and do not hinder them, for to such [as these] belongs the kingdom of God.
It was customary for a mother to bring her children to a rabbi for a blessing, and that is why these mothers gathered around Jesus. The disciples, however, thought the children were unworthy of the Master’s time-less important than whatever else he was doing. But Jesus welcomed them because little children have the kind of faith and trust needed to enter God’s kingdom. It is important that we introduce our children to Jesus.
I thank You Lord for this new day and for all that is within it. I praise You Lord that You were able to not only impact my life, but my family’s life through a divine encounter with You. Your plans are good. You know the beginning and the end and You know what we will learn through experience. Lord, You know that what we desire may or may not be the exact thing we thought, but love us enough to let us find out. Lord, You are awesome and I thank You so much for this new day and this weekend with my family and in the opportunity to serve You. Help me Lord to be diligent in my planning and faithful in my stewardship so in what I do and what I say, You may be glorified. I thank You Lord, that You taught me through Your Word and the preaching of Your Word what to do which allowed me to have my children dedicated to You and that You have put the desire in their hearts to be baptized. Lord, speak to the hearts of my children and allow us all to be sensitive to the guiding of Your Spirit so that in all we do and all we say the praise, the honor, and the glory will be Yours in Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.
Verse of the Day
19 In a multitude of words transgression is not lacking, but he who restrains his lips is prudent.
Today – Day 33
- Exodus 10
- There are things that will happen that provide a testimony that God will allow you to share with generations to come that speak of His greatness and great love for His people
- Locust invasion
- 3 So Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh, and said to him, Thus says the Lord, the God of the Hebrews, How long will you refuse to humble yourself before Me? Let My people go, that they may serve Me.4 For if you refuse to let My people go, behold, tomorrow I will bring locusts into your country.5 And they shall cover the land so that one cannot see the ground; and they shall eat the remainder of what escaped and is left to you from the hail, and they shall eat every tree of yours that grows in the field;6 The locusts shall fill your houses and those of all your servants and of all the Egyptians, as neither your fathers nor your fathers’ fathers have seen from their birth until this day. Then Moses departed from Pharaoh.7 And Pharaoh’s servants said to him, How long shall this man be a snare to us? Let the men go, that they may serve the Lord their God; do you not yet understand and know that Egypt is destroyed?8 So Moses and Aaron were brought again to Pharaoh; and he said to them, Go, serve the Lord your God; but just who are to go?9 And Moses said, We will go with our young and our old, with our sons and our daughters, with our flocks and our herds [all of us and all we have], for we must hold a feast to the Lord.10 Pharaoh said to them, Let the Lord be with you, if I ever let you go with your little ones! See, you have some evil purpose in mind.11 Not so! You that are men, [without your families] go and serve the Lord, for that is what you want. And [Moses and Aaron] were driven from Pharaoh’s presence.12 Then the Lord said to Moses, Stretch out your hand over the land of Egypt for the locusts, that they may come up on the land of Egypt and eat all the vegetation of the land, all that the hail has left.13 And Moses stretched forth his rod over the land of Egypt, and the Lord brought an east wind upon the land all that day and all that night; when it was morning, the east wind brought the locusts.14 And the locusts came up over all the land of Egypt and settled down on the whole country of Egypt, a very dreadful mass of them; never before were there such locusts as these, nor will there ever be again.15 For they covered the whole land, so that the ground was darkened, and they ate every bit of vegetation of the land and all the fruit of the trees which the hail had left; there remained not a green thing of the trees or the plants of the field in all the land of Egypt.16 Then Pharaoh sent for Moses and Aaron in haste. He said, I have sinned against the Lord your God and you.17 Now therefore forgive my sin, I pray you, only this once, and entreat the Lord your God only that He may remove from me this [plague of] death.18 Then Moses left Pharaoh and entreated the Lord.19 And the Lord turned a violent west wind, which lifted the locusts and drove them into the Red Sea; not one locust remained in all the country of Egypt.
- Darkness over the land
- 20 But the Lord made Pharaoh’s heart more strong and obstinate, and he would not let the Israelites go.21 And the Lord said to Moses, Stretch out your hand toward the heavens, that there may be darkness over the land of Egypt, a darkness which may be felt.22 So Moses stretched out his hand toward the sky, and for three days a thick darkness was all over the land of Egypt.23 The Egyptians could not see one another, nor did anyone rise from his place for three days; but all the Israelites had natural light in their dwellings.24 And Pharaoh called to Moses, and said, Go, serve the Lord; let your little ones also go with you; it is only your flocks and your herds that must not go.25 But Moses said, You must give into our hand also sacrifices and burnt offerings, that we may sacrifice to the Lord our God.26 Our livestock also shall go with us; there shall not a hoof be left behind; for of them must we take to serve the Lord our God, and we know not with what we must serve the Lord until we arrive there.27 But the Lord made Pharaoh’s heart stronger and more stubborn, and he would not let them go.
- Be careful what you ask for as you may get it.
- 28 And Pharaoh said to Moses, Get away from me! See that you never enter my presence again, for the day you see my face again you shall die!29 And Moses said, You have spoken truly; I will never see your face again.
- Exodus 11
- The final plague that will enable Pharaoh to let God’s people (the Israelites) go (The beginning of the pass over)
- For some it doesn’t matter what you tell them or show them or even allow them to experience they will not listen to what you have to say.
- Exodus 12
- God begins the calendar with the holy days explaining the Passover.
- Eat like you are getting ready for a journey
- Be prepared to go
- 1 THE LORD said to Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt,2 This month shall be to you the beginning of months, the first month of the year to you.3 Tell all the congregation of Israel, On the tenth day of this month they shall take every man a lamb or kid, according to [the size of] the family of which he is the father, a lamb or kid for each house.4 And if the household is too small to consume the lamb, let him and his next door neighbor take it according to the number of persons, every man according to what each can eat shall make your count for the lamb.5 Your lamb or kid shall be without blemish, a male of the first year; you shall take it from the sheep or the goats. 6 And you shall keep it until the fourteenth day of the same month; and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall [each] kill [his] lamb in the evening.7 They shall take of the blood and put it on the two side posts and on the lintel [above the door space] of the houses in which they shall eat [the Passover lamb]. 8 They shall eat the flesh that night roasted; with unleavened bread and bitter herbs they shall eat it.9 Eat not of it raw nor boiled at all with water, but roasted–its head, its legs, and its inner parts.10 You shall let nothing of the meat remain until the morning; and the bones and unedible bits which remain of it until morning you shall burn with fire.11 And you shall eat it thus: [as fully prepared for a journey] your loins girded, your shoes on your feet, and your staff in your hand; and you shall eat it in haste. It is the Lord’s Passover.
- The Passover is explained as something eternal, something to be done for all generations, a holiday to remember what God has done.
- 13 The blood shall be for a token or sign to you upon [the doorposts of] the houses where you are, [that] when I see the blood, I will pass over you, and no plague shall be upon you to destroy you when I smite the land of Egypt. 14 And this day shall be to you for a memorial. You shall keep it as a feast to the Lord throughout your generations, keep it as an ordinance forever.15 [In celebration of the Passover in future years] seven days shall you eat unleavened bread; even the first day you shall put away leaven [symbolic of corruption] out of your houses; for whoever eats leavened bread from the first day until the seventh day, that person shall be cut off from Israel.16 On the first day you shall hold a solemn and holy assembly, and on the seventh day there shall be a solemn and holy assembly; no kind of work shall be done in them, save [preparation of] that which every person must eat–that only may be done by you.17 And you shall observe the Feast of Unleavened Bread, for on this very day have I brought your hosts out of the land of Egypt; therefore shall you observe this day throughout your generations as an ordinance forever.
- Moses explained not only what to do now, but also how to be able to explain it to future generations
- 18 In the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month at evening, you shall eat unleavened bread [and continue] until the twenty-first day of the month at evening.19 Seven days no leaven [symbolic of corruption] shall be found in your houses; whoever eats what is leavened shall be excluded from the congregation of Israel, whether a stranger or native-born. 20 You shall eat nothing leavened; in all your dwellings you shall eat unleavened bread [during that week].21 Then Moses called for all the elders of Israel, and said to them, Go forth, select and take a lamb according to your families and kill the Passover [lamb].22 And you shall take a bunch of hyssop, dip it in the blood in the basin, and touch the lintel above the door and the two side posts with the blood; and none of you shall go out of his house until morning.23 For the Lord will pass through to slay the Egyptians; and when He sees the blood upon the lintel and the two side posts, the Lord will pass over the door and will not allow the destroyer to come into your houses to slay you.24 You shall observe this rite for an ordinance to you and to your sons forever.25 When you come to the land which the Lord will give you, as He has promised, you shall keep this service.26 When your children shall say to you, What do you mean by this service?27 You shall say, It is the sacrifice of the Lord’s Passover, for He passed over the houses of the Israelites in Egypt when He slew the Egyptians but spared our houses. And the people bowed their heads and worshiped.
- Finally it was time to go. Everyone was ready and everyone obeyed God’s direction.
- 28 The Israelites went and, as the Lord had commanded Moses and Aaron, so they did.29 At midnight the Lord slew every firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh who sat on his throne to the firstborn of the prisoner in the dungeon, and all the firstborn of the livestock.30 Pharaoh rose up in the night, he, all his servants, and all the Egyptians; and there was a great cry in Egypt, for there was not a house where there was not one dead.31 He called for Moses and Aaron by night, and said, Rise up, get out from among my people, both you and the Israelites; and go, serve the Lord, as you said.32 Also take your flocks and your herds, as you have said, and be gone! And [ask your God to] bless me also.33 The Egyptians were urgent with the people to depart, that they might send them out of the land in haste; for they said, We are all dead men.34 The people took their dough before it was leavened, their kneading bowls being bound up in their clothes on their shoulders.35 The Israelites did according to the word of Moses; and they [urgently] asked of the Egyptians jewels of silver and of gold, and clothing.36 The Lord gave the people favor in the sight of the Egyptians, so that they gave them what they asked. And they stripped the Egyptians [of those things].37 The Israelites journeyed from Rameses to Succoth, about 600,000 men on foot, besides women and children.38 And a mixed multitude went also with them, and very much livestock, both flocks and herds.39 They baked unleavened cakes of the dough which they brought from Egypt; it was not leavened because they were driven from Egypt and could not delay, nor had they prepared for themselves any food. 40 Now the time the Israelites dwelt in Egypt was 430 years. 41 At the end of the 430 years, even that very day, all the hosts of the Lord went out of Egypt.42 It was a night of watching unto the Lord and to be much observed for bringing them out of Egypt; this same night of watching unto the Lord is to be observed by all the Israelites throughout their generations.43 The Lord said to Moses and Aaron, This is the ordinance of the Passover: No foreigner shall eat of it;44 But every man’s servant who is bought for money, when you have circumcised him, then may he eat of it.45 A foreigner or hired servant shall not eat of it.46 In one house shall it be eaten [by one company]; you shall not carry any of the flesh outside the house; neither shall you break a bone of it. 47 All the congregation of Israel shall keep it.48 When a stranger sojourning with you wishes to keep the Passover to the Lord, let all his males be circumcised, and then let him come near and keep it; and he shall be as one that is born in the land. But no uncircumcised person shall eat of it.49 There shall be one law for the native-born and for the stranger or foreigner who sojourns among you.50 Thus did all the Israelites; as the Lord commanded Moses and Aaron, so did they.51 And on that very day the Lord brought the Israelites out of the land of Egypt by their hosts.
1 ALSO [Jesus] told them a parable to the effect that they ought always to pray and not to turn coward (faint, lose heart, and give up).
To persist in prayer and not give up does not mean endless repetition or painfully long prayer sessions. Always praying means keeping our requests constantly before God as we live for him day by day, believing he will answer. When we live by faith, we are not to give up. God may delay answering, but his delays always have good reasons. As we persist in prayer we grow in character, faith, and hope.
I thank You for Your Word today. I think over the past six month and the challenges and struggles, the burdens and pain that I was feeling and carrying around. Through it all I continued to give it up to You. Through it all I kept trying to be responsive to You. And then the breakthrough came when I realized that the bitterness and resentment, anger and frustration were keeping me from Your blessings and keeping me from receiving what You truly desired for me. Allowing forgiveness to take place in my heart and mind was huge. Lord, it is amazing to me how You can use a song and the still quiet voice of Your Spirit to lead me to repentance for having carried the bitterness and unforgiveness. Lord, in Your perfect timing, I was freed. In Your perfect timing doors of opportunity started to open to build up my confidence and experience. In Your perfect timing muscles that needed to be exercised in my life started to get worked. In Your perfect timing muscles that I started to doubt or worry about because of the experiences over the past few month at that time started to show up and shine. In Your perfect timing a friend showed me a door of opportunity which was available for me to knock on. Knocking on the door it ended up being the right door, as the others had closed as I had asked God to close the doors I shouldn’t walk through but open the door so wide I couldn’t miss it if it was the right door, but this door opened so wide that I couldn’t miss it and I am having a great time with the team, the work, and the new experiences. God is faithful. God is always with me. God is even going ahead to prepare the way for the work He has in store for us in the future. There is a reason and a purpose for everything that we go through, not to harm us to but to build us up, to be able to better relate with others, to build our character, to build our faith, and to build our hope. Lord, thank You for this new day and for the experiences that will come with it. Again I ask that if this is the right opportunity for us to please open the door and make it very clear to all of us. Speak to us Lord that we may only do what is in Your will and plans. So Lord, I lift up this day to You and pray that in all I do and all I say, You may receive all the praise, the honor, and the glory in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Verse of the Day
6 And while they were there, the time came for her delivery,7 And she gave birth to her Son, her Firstborn; and she wrapped Him in swaddling clothes and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room or place for them in the inn.
Today – Day 32
- Exodus 7
- There are times when God will let us be hard hearted about a situation. It creates an opportunity for His greatness, His mercy, His love to be revealed. It also helps us to give Him all the praise, the honor, and the glory He deserves.
- There will always be people who try to deny miracles of God. They may try to disprove or reproduce it so that they can try to ignore it.
- They were able to reproduce it, but the rod God had transformed at the other snakes.
- 8 And the Lord said to Moses and Aaron,9 When Pharaoh says to you, Prove [your authority] by a miracle, then tell Aaron, Throw your rod down before Pharaoh, that it may become a serpent.10 So Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh and did as the Lord had commanded; Aaron threw down his rod before Pharaoh and his servants, and it became a serpent.11 Then Pharaoh called for the wise men [skilled in magic and divination] and the sorcerers (wizards and jugglers). And they also, these magicians of Egypt, did similar things with their enchantments and secret arts.12 For they cast down every man his rod and they became serpents; but Aaron’s rod swallowed up their rods.13 But Pharaoh’s heart was hardened and stubborn and he would not listen to them, just as the Lord had said.
- Again they were able to reproduce, but God had greater plans.
- 19 And the Lord said to Moses, Say to Aaron, Take your rod and stretch out your hand over the waters of Egypt, over their streams, rivers, pools, and ponds of water, that they may become blood; and there shall be blood throughout all the land of Egypt, in containers both of wood and of stone.20 Moses and Aaron did as the Lord commanded; [Aaron] lifted up the rod and smote the waters in the river in the sight of Pharaoh and his servants, and all the waters in the river were turned to blood.21 And the fish in the river died; and the river became foul smelling, and the Egyptians could not drink its water, and there was blood throughout all the land of Egypt.22 But the magicians of Egypt did the same by their enchantments and secret arts; and Pharaoh’s heart was made hard and obstinate, and he did not listen to Moses and Aaron, just as the Lord had said.23 And Pharaoh turned and went into his house; neither did he take even this to heart.24 And all the Egyptians dug round about the river for water to drink, for they could not drink the water of the [Nile].25 Seven days passed after the Lord had smitten the river.
- Exodus 8
- God didn’t give up but sent them again to Pharaoh
- Infestation of frogs
- Again the magicians were able to “reproduce” making even more frogs come out
- Pharaoh ask Moses and Aaron to ask God to take them away and he would let the people go.
- 1 THEN THE Lord said to Moses, Go to Pharaoh and say to him, Thus says the Lord, Let My people go, that they may serve Me.2 And if you refuse to let them go, behold, I will smite your entire land with frogs;3 And the river shall swarm with frogs which shall go up and come into your house, into your bedchamber and on your bed, and into the houses of your servants and upon your people, and into your ovens, your kneading bowls, and your dough.4 And the frogs shall come up on you and on your people and all your servants.5 And the Lord said to Moses, Say to Aaron, Stretch out your hand with your rod over the rivers, the streams and canals, and over the pools, and cause frogs to come up on the land of Egypt.6 So Aaron stretched out his hand over the waters of Egypt, and the frogs came up and covered the land.7 But the magicians did the same thing with their enchantments and secret arts, and brought up [more] frogs upon the land of Egypt.8 Then Pharaoh called for Moses and Aaron, and said, Entreat the Lord, that He may take away the frogs from me and my people; and I will let the people go that they may sacrifice to the Lord.9 Moses said to Pharaoh, Glory over me in this: dictate when I shall pray [to the Lord] for you, your servants, and your people, that the frogs may be destroyed from you and your houses and remain only in the river.10 And [Pharaoh] said, Tomorrow. [Moses] said, Let it be as you say, that you may know that there is no one like the Lord our God.11 And the frogs shall depart from you and your houses and from your servants and your people; they shall remain in the river only.12 So Moses and Aaron went out from Pharaoh, and Moses cried to the Lord [as he had agreed with Pharaoh] concerning the frogs which He had brought against him.13 And the Lord did according to the word of Moses, and the frogs died out of the houses, out of the courtyards and villages, and out of the fields.14 [The people] gathered them together in heaps, and the land was loathsome and stank.15 But when Pharaoh saw that there was temporary relief, he made his heart stubborn and hard and would not listen or heed them, just as the Lord had said.
- Pharaoh’s heart hardened and God sent Moses and Aaron to Pharaoh again. This time the magicians weren’t able to match God’s sign
- 16 Then the Lord said to Moses, Say to Aaron, Stretch out your rod and strike the dust of the ground, that it may become biting gnats or mosquitoes throughout all the land of Egypt.17 And they did so; Aaron stretched out his hand with his rod and struck the dust of the earth, and there came biting gnats or mosquitoes on man and beast; all the dust of the land became biting gnats or mosquitoes throughout all the land of Egypt.18 The magicians tried by their enchantments and secret arts to bring forth gnats or mosquitoes, but they could not; and there were gnats or mosquitoes on man and beast.19 Then the magicians said to Pharaoh, This is the finger of God! But Pharaoh’s heart was hardened and strong and he would not listen to them, just as the Lord had said.
- God sent them again to try to change Pharaoh’s mind and show God’s power and love for His people
- 20 Then the Lord said to Moses, Rise up early in the morning and stand before Pharaoh as he comes forth to the water; and say to him, Thus says the Lord, Let My people go, that they may serve Me.21 Else, if you will not let My people go, behold, I will send swarms [of bloodsucking gadflies] upon you, your servants, and your people, and into your houses; and the houses of the Egyptians shall be full of swarms [of bloodsucking gadflies], and also the ground on which they stand.22 But on that day I will sever and set apart the land of Goshen in which My people dwell, that no swarms [of gadflies] shall be there, so that you may know that I am the Lord in the midst of the earth.23 And I will put a division and a sign of deliverance between My people and your people. By tomorrow shall this sign be in evidence.24 And the Lord did so; and there came heavy and oppressive swarms [of bloodsucking gadflies] into the house of Pharaoh and his servants’ houses; and in all of Egypt the land was corrupted and ruined by reason of the great invasion [of gadflies].
- This got Pharaoh’s attention…
- 25 And Pharaoh called for Moses and Aaron, and said, Go, sacrifice to your God [here] in the land [of Egypt].26 And Moses said, It is not suitable or right to do that; for the animals the Egyptians hold sacred and will not permit to be slain are those which we are accustomed to sacrifice to the Lord our God; if we did this before the eyes of the Egyptians, would they not stone us?27 We will go a three days’ journey into the wilderness and sacrifice to the Lord our God, as He will command us.28 So Pharaoh said, I will let you go, that you may sacrifice to the Lord your God in the wilderness; only you shall not go very far away. Entreat [your God] for me.
- Pharaoh’s heart hardened again…
- 29 Moses said, I go out from you, and I will entreat the Lord that the swarms [of bloodsucking gadflies] may depart from Pharaoh, his servants, and his people tomorrow; only let not Pharaoh deal deceitfully any more in not letting the people go to sacrifice to the Lord.30 So Moses went out from Pharaoh and entreated the Lord.31 And the Lord did as Moses had spoken: He removed the swarms [of attacking gadflies] from Pharaoh, from his servants, and his people; there remained not one.32 But Pharaoh hardened his heart and made it stubborn this time also, nor would he let the people go.
- Exodus 9
- God had another sign to try and convince Pharaoh to let his people go. (plague over the live stock)
- 1 THEN THE Lord said to Moses, Go to Pharaoh and tell him, Thus says the Lord God of the Hebrews: Let My people go, that they may serve Me.2 If you refuse to let them go and still hold them,3 Behold, the hand of the Lord [will fall] upon your livestock which are out in the field, upon the horses, the donkeys, the camels, the herds and the flocks; there shall be a very severe plague.4 But the Lord shall make a distinction between the livestock of Israel and the livestock of Egypt, and nothing shall die of all that belongs to the Israelites.5 And the Lord set a time, saying, Tomorrow the Lord will do this thing in the land.6 And the Lord did that the next day, and all [kinds of] the livestock of Egypt died; but of the livestock of the Israelites not one died.7 Pharaoh sent to find out, and behold, there was not one of the cattle of the Israelites dead. But the heart of Pharaoh was hardened [his mind was set] and he did not let the people go.
- Another sign(everyone and every animal [Egyptian] covered in sores)
- 8 The Lord said to Moses and Aaron, Take handfuls of ashes or soot from the brickkiln and let Moses sprinkle them toward the heavens in the sight of Pharaoh.9 And it shall become small dust over all the land of Egypt, and become boils breaking out in sores on man and beast in all the land [occupied by the Egyptians].10 So they took ashes or soot of the kiln and stood before Pharaoh; and Moses threw them toward the sky, and it became boils erupting in sores on man and beast.11 And the magicians could not stand before Moses because of their boils; for the boils were on the magicians and all the Egyptians.12 But the Lord hardened the heart of Pharaoh, making it strong and obstinate, and he did not listen to them or heed them, just as the Lord had told Moses.
- The Lord sent them back again with another threat/sign to Pharaoh that me may let God’s people go.
- 13 Then the Lord said to Moses, Rise up early in the morning and stand before Pharaoh and say to him, Thus says the Lord, the God of the Hebrews, Let My people go, that they may serve Me.14 For this time I will send all My plagues upon your heart and upon your servants and your people, that you may recognize and know that there is none like Me in all the earth.15 For by now I could have put forth My hand and have struck you and your people with pestilence, and you would have been cut off from the earth.16 But for this very purpose have I let you live, that I might show you My power, and that My name may be declared throughout all the earth. 17 Since you are still exalting yourself [in haughty defiance] against My people by not letting them go,18 Behold, tomorrow about this time I will cause it to rain a very heavy and dreadful fall of hail, such as has not been in Egypt from its founding until now.19 Send therefore now and gather your cattle in hastily, and all that you have in the field; for every man and beast that is in the field and is not brought home shall be struck by the hail and shall die.20 Then he who feared the word of the Lord among the servants of Pharaoh made his servants and his livestock flee into the houses and shelters.21 And he who ignored the word of the Lord left his servants and his livestock in the field.22 The Lord said to Moses, Stretch forth your hand toward the heavens, that there may be hail in all the land of Egypt, upon man and beast, and upon all the vegetation of the field, throughout the land of Egypt.23 Then Moses stretched forth his rod toward the heavens, and the Lord sent thunder and hail, and fire (lightning) ran down to and along the ground, and the Lord rained hail upon the land of Egypt.24 So there was hail and fire flashing continually in the midst of the weighty hail, such as had not been in all the land of Egypt since it became a nation.25 The hail struck down throughout all the land of Egypt everything that was in the field, both man and beast; and the hail beat down all the vegetation of the field and shattered every tree of the field.26 Only in the land of Goshen, where the Israelites were, was there no hail.27 And Pharaoh sent for Moses and Aaron, and said to them, I have sinned this time; the Lord is in the right and I and my people are in the wrong.
- Again God had Pharaoh’s attention, but again his heart was hardened.
- 28 Entreat the Lord, for there has been enough of these mighty thunderings and hail [these voices of God]; I will let you go; you shall stay here no longer.29 Moses said to him, As soon as I leave the city, I will stretch out my hands to the Lord; the thunder shall cease, neither shall there be any more hail, that you may know that the earth is the Lord’s.30 But as for you and your servants, I know that you do not yet [reverently] fear the Lord God.31 The flax and the barley were smitten and ruined, for the barley was in the ear and the flax in bloom.32 But the wheat and spelt [another wheat] were not smitten, for they ripen late and were not grown up yet.33 So Moses left the city and Pharaoh, and stretched forth his hands to the Lord; and the thunder and hail ceased, and rain was no longer poured upon the earth.34 But when Pharaoh saw that the rain, the hail, and the thunder had ceased, he sinned yet more, and toughened and stiffened his hard heart, he and his servants.35 So Pharaoh’s heart was strong and obstinate; he would not let the Israelites go, just as the Lord had said by Moses.
20 Asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, He replied to them by saying, The kingdom of God does not come with signs to be observed or with visible display,21 Nor will people say, Look! Here [it is]! or, See, [it is] there! For behold, the kingdom of God is within you [in your hearts] and among you [surrounding you].
The Pharisees asked when God’s kingdom would come, not knowing that it had already arrived. The kingdom of God is not like an earthly kingdom with geographical boundaries. Instead, it begins with the work of God’s Spirit in people’s lives and in relationships. Still today we must resist looking to institutions or programs for evidence of the progress of God’s kingdom. Instead, we should look for what God is doing in people’s hearts.
I thank You Lord for this new day and for all that is within it. I praise You Lord for the incredible truth that You have revealed to me since I have begun to follow You. I praise You Lord for having watched over me and spoken into my life through my parents and grandparent. I praise You Lord for having prodded my heart while I was still in university. I praise You Lord for having covered my family by having our wedding in the Your house. I praise You Lord for the transformation that took place when You moved us out of comfort zone and removed the excuses so that we could get truly plugged in to Your church body and Your Word through the baptism in water, the baptism of the Spirit, worship, productions, and so much more. God as I walk out today I pray Lord that Your Spirit will guide me and prompt me. I pray Lord that You will give me wisdom and time to accomplish everything that You desire for and from me. I lift up my family Lord as we start to consider some big decisions that Your will be done and that our family be in alignment with Your Spirit so that the anointing will flow and the blessings will be shared even beyond our immediate family. Lord, in all that I do and all that I say and all that I think, I lift you up giving You all the praise, the honor, and the glory in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Verse of the Day
10 Love one another with brotherly affection [as members of one family], giving precedence and showing honor to one another.
Today – Day 31
- Exodus 4
- When asked to do something so much bigger than yourself, it can cause fear, but the key is that when You walk it out in obedience and faith rather than fear, God will use it and incredible miracles can and will take place to benefit not only your faith journey and growth, but the lives of many people around you.
- It is always interesting the excuses we can find to not do something God has called us to do. Listen to the still small voice for God’s peace and power will be revealed to you. Don’t push it to the point of angering God.
- What do your hands work on? God will use that to fulfill His plans. With Moses who was shepherding God uses his rod.
- Exodus 5
- Doing God’s work isn’t always easy and the outcome may not be what you were fully expecting.
- Press on, persevere, trust in God through it and His plan will be completed
- Exodus 6
- God keeps His promises, He never forgets them
- Don’t let impatience or anguish of spirit keep you from hearing what God has to say to you.
- Don’t let your situation determine who you are and how you act
- Don’t let the devil and his evil spirits breakdown your confidence and hope. Put your trust in Him and He will make your path straight. Lean not on your own understanding, trust in God.
3 Pay attention and always be on your guard [looking out for one another]. If your brother sins (misses the mark), solemnly tell him so and reprove him, and if he repents (feels sorry for having sinned), forgive him.4 And even if he sins against you seven times in a day, and turns to you seven times and says, I repent [I am sorry], you must forgive him (give up resentment and consider the offense as recalled and annulled).
To rebuke does not mean to point out every sin we see; it means to bring sin to a person’s attention with the purpose of restoring him or her to God and to fellow humans. When you feel you must rebuke another Christian for a sin, check your attitudes before you speak. Do you love the person? Are you willing to forgive? Unless rebuke is tied to forgiveness, it will not help the sinning person.
I thank You Lord for this new day and for all that is in it. I thank You Lord for the meeting You setup that allowed me to hear and share with Billy what is going on in our lives while at the same time knowing our children were fed with Your Word. Lord, You are awesome and every day You make a way when there doesn’t seem to be a way, You provide insight and wisdom to help in my daily situations, You are with me but also going ahead of me to prepare the work that You will have me accomplish. As we look ahead today I pray Lord that You will provide me the opportunity to accomplish Your priorities in Your way so that in all I say and all I do You will receive the praise, the honor, and the glory in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Verse of the Day
5 But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our guilt and iniquities; the chastisement [needful to obtain] peace and well-being for us was upon Him, and with the stripes [that wounded] Him we are healed and made whole.6 All we like sheep have gone astray, we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord has made to light upon Him the guilt and iniquity of us all.
- Exodus 1
- The new king didn’t know about Joseph and so fear of the Jews captured his heart and caused him to enslave them and try different schemes to try to manage them
- Fear of God over fear of man caused the midwives to be blessed by God.
- Exodus 2
- God has a way of making things work out better than we could have planned.
- Moses’ mother put him in a basket and into the river
- Pharaoh’s daughter found it and then thanks to Moses’ sister hired his mom to nurse him till he was older (with pay) at which point Moses went to live with Pharaoh’s daughter
- Moses was raised educated and trained in the ways of the Egyptians.
- Moses didn’t like the way people were getting treated and took things to extreme in his own hands
- When he saw two Hebrew men quarreling he tried to get them to stop, but they made a comment about him being over them and what was he going to do kill them. This and the threat of Pharaoh wanting to slay him caused panic and Moses fled to Midian.
- After nearly 40 years the king of Egypt died and the Israelites were sighing and groaning because of the bondage. So they cried out to God.
- God remembered His covenant and concerned Himself about them.
- Exodus 3
- Moses had the burning bush experience. Imagine seeing a bush that appeared to be on fire but wasn’t being consumed. It is amazing what God can do and use to get our attention.
- 2 The Angel of the Lord appeared to him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush; and he looked, and behold, the bush burned with fire, yet was not consumed.3 And Moses said, I will now turn aside and see this great sight, why the bush is not burned.4 And when the Lord saw that he turned aside to see, God called to him out of the midst of the bush and said, Moses, Moses! And he said, Here am I.5 God said, Do not come near; put your shoes off your feet, for the place on which you stand is holy ground.6 Also He said, I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. And Moses hid his face, for he was afraid to look at God.7 And the Lord said, I have surely seen the affliction of My people who are in Egypt, and have heard their cry because of their taskmasters and oppressors; for I know their sorrows and sufferings and trials.8 And I have come down to deliver them out of the hand and power of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land to a land good and large, a land flowing with milk and honey [a land of plenty]–to the place of the Canaanite, the Hittite, the Amorite, the Perizzite, the Hivite, and the Jebusite.9 Now behold, the cry of the Israelites has come to Me, and I have also seen how the Egyptians oppress them.10 Come now therefore, and I will send you to Pharaoh, that you may bring forth My people, the Israelites, out of Egypt.
- Ever have that feeling “Me? Are you sure you have the right person God?” I remember I did when God wanted me to step up to become the president of a HOA with over 10000 people living in the community.
- 11 And Moses said to God, Who am I, that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the Israelites out of Egypt?12 God said, I will surely be with you; and this shall be the sign to you that I have sent you: when you have brought the people out of Egypt, you shall serve God on this mountain [Horeb, or Sinai].13 And Moses said to God, Behold, when I come to the Israelites and say to them, The God of your fathers has sent me to you, and they say to me, What is His name? What shall I say to them?14 And God said to Moses, I AM WHO I AM and WHAT I AM, and I WILL BE WHAT I WILL BE; and He said, You shall say this to the Israelites: I AM has sent me to you!15 God said also to Moses, This shall you say to the Israelites: The Lord, the God of your fathers, of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob, has sent me to you! This is My name forever, and by this name I am to be remembered to all generations.
- God is great though when He does call you because He also provides the HOW not just the WHAT.
- 16 Go, gather the elders of Israel together [the mature teachers and tribal leaders], and say to them, The Lord God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob, appeared to me, saying, I have surely visited you and seen that which is done to you in Egypt;17 And I have declared that I will bring you up out of the affliction of Egypt to the land of the Canaanite, the Hittite, the Amorite, the Perizzite, the Hivite, and the Jebusite, to a land flowing with milk and honey.18 And [the elders] shall believe and obey your voice; and you shall go, you and the elders of Israel, to the king of Egypt and you shall say to him, The Lord, the God of the Hebrews, has met with us; and now let us go, we beseech you, three days’ journey into the wilderness, that we may sacrifice to the Lord our God.19 And I know that the king of Egypt will not let you go [unless forced to do so], no, not by a mighty hand.20 So I will stretch out My hand and smite Egypt with all My wonders which I will do in it; and after that he will let you go.21 And I will give this people favor and respect in the sight of the Egyptians; and it shall be that when you go, you shall not go empty-handed.22 But every woman shall [insistently] solicit of her neighbor and of her that may be residing at her house jewels and articles of silver and gold, and garments, which you shall put on your sons and daughters; and you shall strip the Egyptians [of belongings due to you].
4 What man of you, if he has a hundred sheep and should lose one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness (desert) and go after the one that is lost until he finds it?5 And when he has found it, he lays it on his [own] shoulders, rejoicing.
We may be able to understand a God who would forgive sinners who come to him for mercy. But a God who tenderly searches for sinners and then joyfully forgives them must possess an extraordinary love! This is the kind of love that prompted Jesus to come to earth to search for lost people and save them. This is the kind of extraordinary love that God has for you. If you feel far from God, don’t despair. He is searching for you.
I thank You Lord for this new day and all that You have planned in it. Lord, I thank You for a good nights rest to refresh, renew, and restore my strength. Lord, You are so incredible in knowing what I need before I even ask and preparing in advance the right situations so that I am able to ask and receive it through You. Lord, I thank You for the meetings You arranged in order that I may be able to accomplish things for Your glory. As I start this new day with new plans and new ideas, I lift it up to You. Guide my steps Lord and grant me wisdom and discernment, wisdom and vision, that great and glorious things may be planned and accomplished for the glory of Your name. Grant me favor with those I work with that they may receive all that You have for them and that even greater things may be accomplished through Your Spirit in this place. Lord, grant me favor with those I go to church with or who may start to come to church so that others may come to learn more about You and serve You. And Lord in all and through all of this may You receive all the praise, the honor, and the glory in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Verse of the Day
11 Therefore encourage (admonish, exhort) one another and edify (strengthen and build up) one another, just as you are doing.
1 Thessalonians 5:11
- Genesis 48
- Bethlehem has been a historical place many times in the Bible. We see that Rachel was buried there.
- 7 And as for me, when I came from Padan, Rachel died at my side in the land of Canaan on the way, when yet there was but a little way to come to Ephrath; and I buried her there on the way to Ephrath, that is, Bethlehem.
- Israel, just as God does things, was intentional in his blessings. We see in today’s reading that Israel crossed his hands intentionally as he was about to bless Joseph’s sons.
- 14 And Israel reached out his right hand and laid it on the head of Ephraim, who was the younger, and his left hand on Manasseh’s head, crossing his hands intentionally, for Manasseh was the firstborn.
- Joseph noticed and tried to move it, but Israel knew what he was doing.
- 17 When Joseph saw that his father laid his right hand on Ephraim’s head, it displeased him; and he held up his father’s hand to move it to Manasseh’s head.18 And Joseph said, Not so, my father, for this is the firstborn; put your right hand upon his head.19 But his father refused and said, I know, my son, I know. He also shall become a people and shall be great; but his younger brother shall be greater than he, and his offspring shall become a multitude of nations.20 And he blessed them that day, saying, By you shall Israel bless [one another], saying, May God make you like Ephraim and like Manasseh. And he set Ephraim before Manasseh.
- Israel claimed Joseph’s two sons as his own in terms of blessing them and blessed Joseph as well in addition to them.
- 21 And Israel said to Joseph, Behold, I [am about to] die, but God will be with you and bring you again to the land of your fathers.22 Moreover, I have given to you [Joseph] one portion [Shechem, one mountain slope] more than any of your brethren, which I took [reclaiming it] out of the hand of the Amorites with my sword and with my bow.
- Genesis 49
- Israel (aka Jacob) prophesies over his sons – so he called them all unto himself (even prophesying about the Messiah)
- Reuben, you are my firstborn, my might, the beginning (the firstfruits) of my manly strength and vigor; [your birthright gave you] the preeminence in dignity and the preeminence in power. But unstable and boiling over like water, you shall not excel and have the preeminence [of the firstborn], because you went to your father’s bed; you defiled it–he went to my couch!
- Simeon and Levi are brothers [equally headstrong, deceitful, vindictive, and cruel]; their swords are weapons of violence. O my soul, come not into their secret council; unto their assembly let not my honor be united [for I knew nothing of their plot], because in their anger they slew men [an honored man, Shechem, and the Shechemites], and in their self-will they disabled oxen. Cursed be their anger, for it was fierce, and their wrath, for it was cruel. I will divide them in Jacob and scatter them in Israel.
- Judah, you are the one whom your brothers shall praise; your hand shall be on the neck of your enemies; your father’s sons shall bow down to you. Judah, a lion’s cub! With the prey, my son, you have gone high up [the mountain]. He stooped down, he crouched like a lion, and like a lioness–who dares provoke and rouse him? The scepter or leadership shall not depart from Judah, nor the ruler’s staff from between his feet, until Shiloh [the Messiah, the Peaceful One] comes to Whom it belongs, and to Him shall be the obedience of the people. Binding His foal to the vine and His donkey’s colt to the choice vine, He washes His garments in wine and His clothes in the blood of grapes. His eyes are darker and more sparkling than wine, and His teeth whiter than milk.
- Zebulun shall live toward the seashore, and he shall be a haven and a landing place for ships; and his border shall be toward Sidon.
- Issachar is a strong-boned donkey crouching down between the sheepfolds. And he saw that rest was good and that the land was pleasant; and he bowed his shoulder to bear [his burdens] and became a servant to tribute [subjected to forced labor].
- Dan shall judge his people as one of the tribes of Israel. Dan shall be a serpent by the way, a horned snake in the path, that bites at the horse’s heels, so that his rider falls backward. I wait for Your salvation, O Lord.
- Gad–a raiding troop shall raid him, but he shall raid at their heels and assault them [victoriously].
- Asher’s food [supply] shall be rich and fat, and he shall yield and deliver royal delights.
- Naphtali is a hind let loose which yields lovely fawns.
- Joseph is a fruitful bough, a fruitful bough by a well (spring or fountain), whose branches run over the wall. Skilled archers have bitterly attacked and sorely worried him; they have shot at him and persecuted him. But his bow remained strong and steady and rested in the Strength that does not fail him, for the arms of his hands were made strong and active by the hands of the Mighty God of Jacob, by the name of the Shepherd, the Rock of Israel, By the God of your father, Who will help you, and by the Almighty, Who will bless you with blessings of the heavens above, blessings lying in the deep beneath, blessings of the breasts and of the womb. The blessings of your father [on you] are greater than the blessings of my forefathers [Abraham and Isaac on me] and are as lasting as the bounties of the eternal hills; they shall be on the head of Joseph, and on the crown of the head of him who was the consecrated one and the one separated from his brethren and [the one who] is prince among them.
- Benjamin is a ravenous wolf, in the morning devouring the prey and at night dividing the spoil.
- As he finished his blessings, he told them where he was to be buried, pulled his feet back into his bed and died.
- 30 He charged them and said to them, I am to be gathered to my [departed] people; bury me with my fathers in the cave that is in the field of Ephron the Hittite,30 In the cave in the field at Machpelah, east of Mamre in the land of Canaan, that Abraham bought, along with the field of Ephron the Hittite, to possess as a cemetery. 31 There they buried Abraham and Sarah his wife, there they buried Isaac and Rebekah his wife, and there I buried Leah.32 The purchase of the field and the cave that is in it was from the sons of Heth.33 When Jacob had finished commanding his sons, he drew his feet up into the bed and breathed his last and was gathered to his [departed] people.
- Genesis 50
- Joseph’s brothers were fearful and as such again schemed to ensure that Joseph would forgive them. Joseph knew that even though what they had planned for evil, God was using for good and comforted their fears
- 15 When Joseph’s brethren saw that their father was dead, they said, Perhaps now Joseph will hate us and will pay us back for all the evil we did to him.16 And they sent a messenger to Joseph, saying, Your father commanded before he died, saying,17 So shall you say to Joseph: Forgive (take up and away all resentment and all claim to requital concerning), I pray you now, the trespass of your brothers and their sin, for they did evil to you. Now, we pray you, forgive the trespass of the servants of your father’s God. And Joseph wept when they spoke thus to him.18 Then his brothers went and fell down before him, saying, See, we are your servants (your slaves)!19 And Joseph said to them, Fear not; for am I in the place of God? [Vengeance is His, not mine.]20 As for you, you thought evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring about that many people should be kept alive, as they are this day.21 Now therefore, do not be afraid. I will provide for and support you and your little ones. And he comforted them [imparting cheer, hope, strength] and spoke to their hearts [kindly].
- Joseph before he died also made the sons of Israel promise to bring his bones with them when they left Egypt.