January 18: Read through the Holy Bible in a year.

John 12:1-19 begins the last week before the Crucifixion. It is important when this happened, so I have inserted a piece on the correct dates for Passover and the Holy week. Jesus was anointed at Bethany, on Sunday and, as prophecised, he rode on an unbroken donkey colt in the triumphal entry.

Trouble started in Genesis 34. Dinah was violated by an uncircumcised person, two of her brothers executed revenge on not only the violator but every male in the whole town, killing them all. Jacob said: “You have troubled me to make me a stink among the inhabitants of the land.” And so trouble started.

Genesis 35. Jacob returned to Bethel, got rid of all the idols and built an altar. Moving on from Bethel, Rachel gave birth to Benjamin, a birth so hard Rachel died in childbirth. Finally it tells of the death of Isaac.

January 17: Read through the Holy Bible in a year.

John 11:45-57. Because Jesus had raised Lazarus from the dead, the ruling Jews were worried that Jesus would become ruler and then the Romans would destroy their nation. This lead to Caiaphas’ inadvertent prophecy “You know nothing at all! You do not realize that it is better for you that one man die for the people than that the whole nation perish.

The sons of Laban were displeased, so in Genesis 31 Jacob fled from Laban. However, as Jacob, wives and children all were set to depart, Rachel stole Laban’s idols. Laban found out the idols were missing, pursued Jacob and caught up with him. Laban looked for the idols, at no avail, Rachel had hid them under the saddle of her camel and sat on it claiming she had her period. Finally Laban gave in, said farewell to all and he and Joseph established the Mizpah.

In Genesis 32 Jacob, schemer as he was, prepared to meet Esau. He figured Esau wanted to kill him, so he split up his company in two, and gave instructions to his messengers on what to say to make Esau less vindictive. Then the Jacob family crossed the Ford of Jabbok. On the other side they camped for the night, and Jacob wrestled with an angel of God and prevailed, but got a limp in his hip. God then gave Jacob a new, spiritual name, Israel.

And in Genesis 33 Jacob finally met up with Esau, and it turned out that Esau rejoiced to see Jacob and all his children.

January 16: Read through the Holy Bible in a year.

John 11:1-44 describes how Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead (on the fourth day no less).

Jacob arrived in Paddan Aram in Genesis 29, fell in love with Rachel, worked seven years to be allowed to marry her, but her father Laban tricked Jacob, so he got Leah instead. Then he worked another “seven years for Rachel”. But it was Leah that gave him his first four children, Reuben, Simeon, Levi and Judah.

Genesis 30 records the remaining children born to Jacob (except Benjamin, who will be born later). It also tells a story about Rachel, desperate to get a child of her own was bargaining with Leah for Reuben’s mandrakes. After Joseph was born, Jacob wanted to leave and go back to the promised land, but Laban bargained with him to stay and make them even more prosperous. Through selective breeding Jacob acquired the majority of the flocks, and became wealthy.

Psalm 6 is a prayer, this time of a humble David asking for mercy, but also asking God to humiliate David’s enemies.

January 15: Read through the Holy Bible in a year.

In John 10:22-42 Jesus claimed to be one with his Father. This is of course blasphemy unless it is true, so for that the Jews wanted to stone him.

In Genesis 27 Jacob deceived Isaac to get the blessing of the firstborn instead of Esau. Esau got one too, but just the regular blessing, so to avoid more trouble Jacob fled to Laban.

In Genesis 28, Jacob went to Paddan Aram to get a wife. On the way he had a dream, commonly known as “Jacob’s Ladder”. Meanwhile, Esau took yet another wife, the daughter of Ishmael. The promise of Jacob’s dream was that God was to give the land to Jacob’s descendants. Jacob made a vow to God and named the place Bethel.

Psalm 5 is a prayer extolling the joy of praising God and praying towards Jerusalem, but is also an urgent prayer to do away with and destroy all wickedness and wicked people.

January 13: Read through the Holy Bible in a year.

In John 9 Jesus opened the eyes of a man blind from birth, Since this was done on a Sabbath trouble arose from the Pharisees. In the arguments that followed Jesus again claimed his divinity.

In Genesis 23 Abraham’s wife Sarah died and Abraham purchased a grave in Mamre, where Abraham, Isaac and Ishmael buried her.

Genesis 24 tells the beautiful story of Isaac and Rebekah.

 

January 12: Read through the Holy Bible in a year.

 

 John 8 begins with a sinful woman who was about to be stoned for adultery. Jesus last words to her was “Go and sin no more”. Jesus did not condemn her for the past but forgave and pointed to the future. The he got into an argument with the religious powers about his and their ancestry. They claimed to be descendants of Abraham, and they questioned the legitimacy of Jesus. Jesus answered “Before Abraham, I am”. Jesus claimed to be God. This was of course blasphemy, unless it is true.

Genesis 21 tells about the birth of Isaac and when Ishmael made fun of it, Sarah got angry and Hagar and Ismael were sent away to die in the desert, but God protected them. The chapter also features the treaty between Abraham and Abimelech at Beersheba.

In  Genesis 22 Abraham was told by God to offer up his son Isaac to be sacrificed on Mount Moriah, the same mountain that Jesus was crucified on. Obeying God he did what he was told, but at the last moment God provided a substitute sacrifice in the form of a ram.

January 11: Read through the Holy Bible in a year.

John7:25-53. The people started asking Jesus if he is the Christ. Rather than answering directly Jesus promised “Streams of living water”and more, but they were not ready to understand it yet.

So in Genesis 19 Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed. There is ample evidence this is a historical true event, the Bible is verified true even here. God provided for Lot, his wife and two daughters to escape.They did, but Lot’s wife looked back towards the city and was no more. After that is recorded the strange story about Lot and his two daughters, and all I can say about that is that it is not good to take matters in our own hand rather than listen to God and let Him guide.

In Genesis 20 Abraham claimed Sarah was his sister. Why? Sarah was his half-sister, so Abraham stretched the truth, also called a lie, or sin. The chapter shows God’s protection even when we do wrong.

Psalm 4 is David’s appeal to righteousness, and the blessings that follow is David’s appeal to righteousness, and the blessings that follow.

January 10: Read through the Holy Bible in a year.

Today we read about circumcision and its importance, in John 7 and 4 chapters in Genesis. But that is just one part of the story.

John 7:1-24. Jesus pointed out that according to Jewish law, circumcision is more important than keeping Sabbath, so, if the eighth day is on a Sabbath, it must be performed, but healing on a Sabbath is not permitted.

In Genesis15 God promised Abram a son, and Abram believed God and it was counted to him as righteousness.

But in Genesis 16 Abram badly wanted an heir, so Sarai, being too old, gave her handmaiden Hagar to be mother of Abram’s son, Ishmael. Sarai regrets what she had done, and Hagar was sent away with Ishmael into the wilderness.

Thirteen years later, in Genesis 17, Ishmael was back with Abram,  God  promised Abram his seed of promise, changed Abram’s name to Abraham and Sarai’s name became Sarah, established with an eternal covenant, the covenant of Circumcision, and it was performed on Abraham, Ishmael and all Abraham’s male servants.

Which brings us to Genesis 18 with Abraham still waiting for his promised offspring. He was visited by three angels that promised him he will have a son within a year. Sarah heard it and found it laughable, but God confirmed this promise, and was also proclaiming the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah. Abraham tried to bargain with God at no avail.

The question to ponder: Why is circumcision important for Jews and Muslims, but not for Christians? Hint: read the Acts of the Apostles, chapter 15.

January 9: Read through the Holy Bible in a year.

January 9:John 6:25-71, Genesis 12, Genesis 13,

The four chapters chosen for today are significant and thought provoking.

In John 6:25-71. Jesus had fed 5000 and been seen walking on water. In spite of these miracles the Jews demanded a sign. Jesus responds in kind saying he is the bread of life, and if people want to have eternal life they must come to him and eat of his flesh and drink of his blood. When hearing this, many abandoned Jesus, but Peter said: To whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.

Then in Genesis 12 Abram was called to leave his home in Ur. He traveled to a land he did not know, promised by God, and he obeyed, but when a famine came he went to Egypt and resorted to deceit rather than trusting God.

In Genesis 13 Abram and his sidekick Lot went back from Egypt and separated paths. Lot chose the fertile plain of Jordan, and Abram went to the hills of Mamre.

And in Genesis 14 Lot got in trouble and was taken captive by a local Mafia. Abram rescued Lot, and on the way back gave a tithe to Melchizedek, king of Salem – (later to become Jerusalem), after God gave him success in battle.

Question: Who was Melchizedek, and why is that important?

January 8: Read through the Holy Bible in a year.

John 6:1-24. Jesus performed miracles 4 and 5 recorded by the Apostle John, feeding 5000 (plus women and children) and walking on water.

Genesis 11 tells about the Tower of Babel, and how different languages arose, all by being disobedient to God.

Psalm 3 is a Psalm of David from when he fled from his son Absalom.