Daily Bible Readings – Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Prayer Psalm: 95

Prayer Point. If God is our Creator, Shepherd and Savior then why do we struggle to trust him? Confess the areas of your life where you are failing to trust him and pray for the faith to rest in his goodness and faithfulness.

Mark 8:1-10

Pray. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you understand what you are reading.

Read. Read the passage slowly either alone or in a group and answer the following questions:

Listen. What is the passage saying? What are the main points? You can use the following background to guide you.

Background. A prophecy was spoken by Moses over a thousand years before the coming of Christ.

Deuteronomy 18:15 The LORD your God will raise a prophet like me from among your own brothers. You must listen to him.

God had fed Israel with daily bread, manna, while Moses led them through the wilderness (see Exodus 16). In today’s reading, we see a prophet like Moses miraculously feed his people.

Pay close attention to …

  • What moves Jesus to feed the crowds.
  • What he asks of the disciples.
  • The way Jesus performed this miracle and what it tells us about his ability to provide.

Obey. The three steps of Gospel obedience

  • Walk. What is God asking me to do?
  • Repent. How have I failed to obey what God is asking me to do? Confess those failures to God and ask for his forgiveness.
  • Believe. Which of God’s promises would I need to believe in order to obey what I have read?

Share. What can I share and with whom can I share it?

Final Prayer. Pray for the faith to believe the promises of God so that you might obey and share what you have learned.

1 Corinthians 11:17-34

Pray. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you understand what you are reading.

Read. Read the passage slowly either alone or in a group and answer the following questions:

Listen. What is the passage saying? What are the main points? You can use the following background to guide you.

Background. Why does Paul conclude that the Corinthian church meetings (church services) do more harm than good? What exists among them that should not exist?

It appears that the Corinthian church celebrated communion, the Lord’s Supper, as part of a meal that was shared by the whole community. What is wrong with the way they celebrate the Lord’s Supper? (obviously getting drunk during communion is a big problem, but what else?)

Paul received the tradition of communion from __________ and passed it on to ___________ (verse 23).

Communion, sometimes called the Lord’s Supper was instituted by Jesus as he celebrated the Passover meal with his disciples on the night he was betrayed by Judas and arrested in the Garden of Gethsemane (see Matthew 26:17-30). Just as the first Passover was celebrated on the night before Israel’s liberation from slavery in Egypt, so also the first Communion was celebrated on the night before Jesus liberated us from slavery to sin by going to the cross and rising from the dead. Just as the breaking of bread and the drinking of wine were part of the celebration of Passover, the cup and the bread are shared in communion.

What is the significance of the bread and the cup? For what purpose do we drink the cup and eat the bread? What should we do before we eat the bread and drink the cup?

Paul has a warning for those who participate in communion in an unworthy manner. Celebrating communion unworthily is connected to “not recognizing the body of the LORD”. While some have argued convincingly that failure to recognize the body of the LORD, is taking the bread and cup without recognizing Jesus’ body and blood in the elements, I believe that Paul has a different form of Christ’s body in mind. The church community is the body of Christ that has gone unrecognized.  Look at verse 33 and verses 20-22 to see what Paul means by celebrating communion unworthily. What have the Corinthian Christians experienced because they made a mockery of the Lord’s Supper?

Obey. The three steps of Gospel obedience

  • Walk. What is God asking me to do?
  • Repent. How have I failed to obey what God is asking me to do? Confess those failures to God and ask for his forgiveness.
  • Believe. Which of God’s promises would I need to believe in order to obey what I have read?

Share. What can I share and with whom can I share it?

Final Prayer. Pray for the faith to believe the promises of God so that you might obey and share what you have learned.

Genesis 49:29-50:14

Pray. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you understand what you are reading.

Read. Read the passage slowly either alone or in a group and answer the following questions:

Listen. What is the passage saying? What are the main points? You can use the background to help guide you.

Background. Before Jacob dies he makes a request of Joseph.  Given Israel’s love for Rachel, what was interesting about his request?

[When Rachel died Jacob buried her in Bethlehem but he wants to be buried with his father and grandfather – and interestingly enough – his less-favored wife Leah.]

Embalming in Egypt had become somewhat of a science.  Joseph had his father embalmed.  How long did that process take?  How long was Jacob mourned in Egypt?
[The embalming process took forty days.  Israel was mourned in Egypt for seventy days.]

So Joseph receives permission from Pharaoh to take Jacob’s remains and to convey them to Canaan for burial.  How is this event described in Chapter 50?
[“So Joseph went up to bury his father.  All Pharaoh’s officials accompanied him – the dignitaries of his court and all the dignitaries of Egypt – besides all the members of Joseph’s household and his brothers and those belonging to his father’s household. … Chariots and horsemen also went up with him.  It was a very large company.” (Genesis 50:7-9)]

When they reached the threshing floor of Atad, near the Jordan, Joseph stopped and mourned for seven days.  He and those with him must have made quite a racket; “they lamented loudly and bitterly.” (Genesis 50:10 NIV).  What observation did the Canaanites make?
[“When the Canaanites who lived there saw the mourning at the threshing floor of Atad, they said, ‘The Egyptians are holding a solemn ceremony of mourning.’” (Genesis 50:11 NIV)]

Once Jacob is buried, Joseph and those with him return to Egypt.

Obey. The three steps of Gospel obedience

  • Walk. What is God asking me to do?
  • Repent. How have I failed to obey what God is asking me to do? Confess those failures to God and ask for his forgiveness.
  • Believe. Which of God’s promises would I need to believe in order to obey what I have read?

Share. What can I share and with whom can I share it?

Final Prayer. Pray for the faith to believe the promises of God so that you might obey and share what you have learned.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s