January 8, read through the Bible in a year.

Today there are four chapters. Jesus points 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 out. Jesus then promises “Streams of living water”.

January 8: John 7, Genesis 15, Genesis 16, Genesis 17, (click on the chapter to begin reading)

In Genesis 15 God promises Abram a son, and Abram believes God and it is counted to him as righteousness.

But in Genesis 16 Abraham badly wants an heir, so Sarai, being too old, gives her handmaiden Hagar to be mother of Abram’s son, Ismael. Sarai regrets what she has done, and Hagar is sent away with Ishmael into the wilderness.

Thirteen years later, in Genesis 17, Ishmael is back with Abram,  God  promises Abraham his seed of promise, changes Abram’s name to Abraham and Sarai’s name becomes Sarah, and establishes it with an eternal covenant, the covenant of Circumcision, and it was performed on Abraham, Ishmael and all Abraham’s servants.  A year later Sarah gives birth to Isaac, at the age of 90, (with God, nothing is impossible).

Circumcision is very important for Jews and Muslims (Sons of Ishmael). As for me, I am thankful for the streams of living water.

 

Genesis 15, God’s land covenant with Abram.

This is now the fourth name of God introduced. NIV translates it “Sovereign GOD”

The normal way of sealing a covenant is that both parties to the covenant pass between the halves of the sacrifice, as is described in Jeremiah:

The smoking oven and the burning torch symbolize God passing between the pieces. The most important thing to realize is that God walks through alone. Normally, both parties of the covenant would walk through together, showing that they both had responsibilities to keep in order to maintain the covenant. But when God walks through alone, He shows Abram that there is absolutely nothing Abram or his descendants have to do in order for God to keep this covenant.

It is a one sided covenant. God takes all the responsibility for fulfilling it upon Himself. No matter what Abram does or doesn’t do from this point on, God will keep His promise. No matter what Israel has or has not done in history, God will keep His promise. (