Daily Encouragement

February 19 – The Last of the Levitical Offerings

February 19
Leviticus 7:28-9:6
Mark 3:31-4:25
Psalm 37:12-29
Proverbs 10:5

Leviticus 7:29 We’re making our way thru the offerings of Leviticus, and are in the peace offerings. These are optional unlike the others. If you’re a bit overwhelmed by the offerings, Wayne Stiles has a one-page PDF overview of what they are and why they matter – “The offerings in Leviticus served as God’s gracious provision for how one could regain and sustain fellowship with God.” I like his blog because he makes extensive use of Israeli geography.

Leviticus 8:17 – They were commanded to burn the bullock for the sin offering “without the camp” in Exodus 29:14. In the New Testament Hebrews 13:12 explains how this command was fulfilled. ICR has a good overview of the phrase “without the camp.”


Mark 4:21 Hide it under a bushel? NO!

Psalm 37:23-24 The chorus of The Steps of a Good Man from Mac Lynch of the WILDS comes word for word from Psalms 37:23-24. Another version is recorded by the wife of a pastor friend of mine.

Proverbs 10:5 – Compare to Mark 4:25 that we read just a few minutes ago – God rewards diligence!

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Daily Encouragement

February 18 – More than just a regional sensation

February 18
Leviticus 6:1-7:27
Mark 3:7-30
Psalm 37:1-11
Proverbs 10:3-4

Leviticus 6:1 – As we tour throughout the legal code of Israel, we are entering Contract Law. If someone makes an agreement, but then reneges on it, it is a sin against his fellow man, but also against the LORD (see Leviticus 6:6). Sin affects man and God.

Leviticus 7:26 – This command about not consuming blood is found in Genesis 9:4, Leviticus 3:17, Leviticus 17:10-12, 14, 19:26, Deuteronomy 12:16, 23, 25; 15:23, Ezekiel 33:25, Acts 15:20, 29, 21:25… so by the time Jesus says in John 6:53-56 that we are to drink His blood, the people are confused.

Source: Grace Communion / https://www.gci.org/bible/mark3a

Mark 3:7 – Yesterday, Jesus just performed a miracle in the synagogue, but today He withdraws to the lake.  Yet he has crowds from many many miles around.

Psalm 37:4 – The Herbster Trio song Delight Yourself in the Lord is based on this verse.


Proverbs 10:4 – While the Bible talks much about care for the poor, it also teaches that becoming rich is a blessing for the diligent. Especially because it gives the ability to give (Ephesians 4:28).

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Daily Encouragement

February 17 – Unclean Men make Clean Men Unclean. Except…..

February 17
Leviticus 4:1-5:19
Mark 2:13-3:6
Psalm 36:1-12
Proverbs 10:1-2

Leviticus 4:2 – Sinning thru ignorance. Centuries earlier Job was concerned about his children sinning in Job’s ignorance (Job 1:5).

Leviticus 5:3 – A “clean” person became “unclean” by touching an “unclean” person. The person did not become “clean” by being touched by a “clean” person. Except when one man did so 1,400 years later (Matthew 8:3).

On a boat on the Sea of Galilee, Author’s Picture

Mark 2:13 – I had the opportunity to travel with Jimmy DeYoung to Israel and we stayed by the sea side of Galilee.

Mark 2:17 – I’m glad that Jesus came to call me to repentance!

Psalm 36:7 – Lovingkindness – again we see the root word Hesed. Discover the Word points out how this word is exemplified in Ruth 3:10, she chose to stay loyal to  Naomi, an act of kindness, a choice of love. John MacArthur discusses hesed as well.

…the Hebrew word chesed which basically is translated loving kindness. That is the attribute of God that we want to focus on. God is possessed by an innate good will toward sinners, an innate kindness. God is by nature merciful, tender-hearted, compassionate. God withholds judgment. God grants benevolent favors because it is His nature. It is a reason to praise Him. It is a reason to honor Him. It is a reason to worship Him….

Proverbs 10:1 – We have moved from the introductory contrasts, to the pithy saying section. 26 of the 32 verses in this chapter use “but” as a contrast as a feature of antithetical Hebrew poetry.

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Daily Encouragement

February 16 – Specifics of Burnt Offerings

February 16
Leviticus 1:1-3:17
Mark 1:29-2:12
Psalm 35:17-28
Proverbs 9:13-18

Congratulations! We’ve completed 3 whole books of the Bible! We’re 1/8 of the way thru the year as well (don’t worry other books in the Bible are shorter!)


Leviticus 1 – What were the characteristics of burnt offerings?

  • 1) Personal,
  • 2) Cattle,
  • 3) Male,
  • 4) Without Blemish,
  • 5) Voluntary,
  • 6) At the tabernacle,
  • 7) Physical touch,
  • 8) Atonement,
  • 9) Personally killed,
  • 10) Blood sprinkled,
  • 11) Cut in pieces,
  • 12) Burned,
  • 13) Washed; for a sweet savour.

God had a detailed process.

Leviticus 3:17 – The Israelites were forbidden from eating blood, because the life was in the blood (Leviticus 17:11).

Mark 1:30 – A major religion teaches that their clergy must be unmarried, however we see that Simon (later Peter) had a mother-in-law. Most people with a mother-in-law, also have a wife.

Mark 1:34 – Again Jesus orders the devils to not speak (as we discussed yesterday).

Mark 2:4 – As Vic Eliason used to say – the press caused problems even back then.

Patch the Pirate has a song, “The Quartet that Raised the Roof” (Amazon MP3).

Psalm 35:17 – Are you hurting? Pray this prayer with the Psalmist!

Proverbs 9:13 – Solomon warns against the foolish woman’s house of ‘hospitality’ – by v.18 the guests are now in the depths of hell.

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Daily Encouragement

February 15 – Aaron’s Breastplate, Jesus’ Ministry

February 15
Exodus 39:1-40:38
Mark 1:1-28
Psalm 35:1-16
Proverbs 9:11-12

Ceramic replica of the Breastplate of Aaron, by Dr. Avishai Teicher Pikiwiki Israel

Exodus 39:14 The names of the tribes of Israel were engraven over the heart of the High Priest. God says that He has graven our names on the palms of His hands (Isaiah 49:16).

Exodus 39:30 A religion that denies the inerrancy of the Bible and calls the sufficiency of Scripture a foolish doctrine has put the words “Holiness to the Lord” on each of their “temples.”

Interestingly the next time in the Bible the phrase “Holiness to the LORD is used” is in Isaiah 23:18, referring to the merchandise of Tyre will become spoil for those who dwell before the LORD.

Mark 1:12 – We read earlier in Matthew 3:7 that many of the Pharisees and Saducees came to investigate John the Baptist. Interestingly after Jesus is publicly acknowledged by John and by His Father, Jesus is immediately taken into the wilderness. We’ll notice that Jesus would not have fulfilled all of the Messianic prophecies at this time, so the Sanhedrin could charge Him with blasphemy if He claimed to be Who He was publicly, and attempt to execute Him prematurely. Thus we’ll see Jesus be very guarded about His identity, and interestingly starts His public ministry with 40 days of silence.

Mark 1:24-25 – As we were saying, Jesus is telling the demons not to share Who He is.

Mark 1:28 – Galilee. TGC shares 7 Differences between Galilee and Judea in the Time of Jesus

Psalm 35:10 – Remember our previous discussion of anthropomorphism? Here’s a great example: “All my bones shall say”

Proverbs 9:11 – How can you have long life? Read Exodus 20:12, Deuteronomy 4:40, 5:16, 5:33, 6:2, 11:9, 11:21, 22:7, 25:15, 32:47; I Kings 3:14, Proverbs 3:2, 3:16, 4:10, 9:11, 10:27, 28:16, and Ephesians 6:3

Share how reading thru the Bible has been a blessing to you! E-mail us at 2018bible@vcyamerica.org or call and leave a message at 414-885-5370.

Daily Encouragement

February 14 – The Ark of the Covenant

February 14
Exodus 37:1-38:31
Matthew 28:1-20
Psalm 34:11-22
Proverbs 9:9-10

Chris Favero

Exodus 37:1 – Many people say the Bible is just a book written by humans, nothing special. But God let a human, Bezaleel (Exodus 31:2) filled with the spirit of God (Exodus 31:3) doing the command of God (Exodus 31:6) and he made an object (the Ark) out of earthly materials (Exodus 37:1) assisted by Aholiab, a skilled worker (Exodus 38:23), and an Israelite who misused that object was killed by God (2 Samuel 6:7).

Another human, Jeremiah (Jeremiah 1:1), received the Word of the LORD (Jeremiah 1:2), doing the command of God (Jeremiah 2:2), and he made an object (the roll) out of earthly materials (Jeremiah 36:2) assisted by Baruch, a skilled writer (Jeremiah 36:4), and an Israelite who contradicted Jeremiah was killed by God (Jeremiah 28:17).

While God will not tell you to make a supernatural Ark, or to write another book of the Bible, God may use your skill, and earthly materials, if you will do His commands, to make a difference today.

When D.L. Moody was just starting in the ministry he heard a preacher say, “The world has yet to see what God can do with a man fully surrendered to Him.” Moody that night said, “By God’s grace I’ll be that man!” It is said that Moody shook two continents for God and over a million souls came to Christ under his preaching and ministry. Moody had little formal education, and he was not a polished speaker. But God greatly used his life. – Paul Chappell


Matthew 28:2Low in the grave He lay, Jesus, my Savior. Waiting the Coming Day, Jesus, my Lord. Up from the grave He arose! With a mighty triumph o’er His foes! He arose the victor from the dark domain and He lives forever with His saints to reign! He Arose! He Arose! Hallelujah, Christ Arose!

Matthew 28:19-20 – It is not the Great Suggestion, it has been called the Great Omission, but may we make His last Command our first Concern!

Psalm 34:22 – “None of them that trust in Him shall be desolate!”

Proverbs 9:10 – Our good friend Patch the Pirate has a great song featuring this verse verbatim.


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Daily Encouragement

February 13 – Curtains made, and Curtains torn

February 13
Exodus 35:10-36:38
Matthew 27:32-66
Psalm 34:1-10
Proverbs 9:7-8

Exodus 35:21, 22, 29 – We see ‘willing’ used 4 times in this passage.  As 2 Corinthians 9:7 says “Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.”

Matthew 27:51 – We read in Exodus about the elaborate preparations for the Tabernacle, including the coverings & curtains designed to keep people and the elements out. Now the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom. Mankind could once again personally, im-media-tely (without a mediator) connect to his Maker.

Christ Crucified (c. 1632) by Diego VelázquezMuseo del PradoMadrid

Matthew 27:57 – Jesus crucified between two thieves (v. 38) who probably targeted rich men, was buried in the tomb of a rich man (v.60) in fulfillment of the prophecy (Isaiah 53:9).

Psalm 34:3 – JW Pepper has an arrangement of O Magnify the Lord (based on this verse), complemented with All Creatures of Our God and King.


Psalm 34:6 – A well known Christian leader would write this verse under his autograph. I appreciated the humility of this leader – recognizing that he was merely a poor man saved by the Lord.

Proverbs 9:8 – When rebuked do you hate or love the one bringing the rebuke? That tells us if you are wise or foolish.

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Daily Encouragement

February 12 – Consequences of Sin

February 12
Exodus 34:1-35:9
Matthew 27:15-31
Psalm 33:12-22
Proverbs 9:1-6

Exodus 34:1, 27, We see the 8th and 9th time the phrase “And the LORD” followed by said or spake after Aaron’s sin in Exodus 32:2. Though as we saw yesterday, the LORD used Aaron’s name 40 times before his sin,  the LORD has yet to mention Aaron’s name and will not until the 10th time. Sin breaks fellowship with God.

Exodus 34:7 The LORD God will punish the great-grandchildren of sinners for the sins of their parents. Sin has consequences that can last for generations. Fetal alcohol syndrome describes consequences on someone other than the drinker. The LORD is repeating a warning he made earlier in Exodus 20:5, but lest we think the Old Testament deity is merely vengeful, both times he contrasts 3-4 generations of judgment with (Exodus 20:6, Exodus 34:7) thousands of generations of hesed for his people. Hesed (חֶ֖סֶד)shows up in the KJV as kindness (Gen 24:12), mercy (Exodus 20:6), goodness (Exodus 34:6), and lovingkindness (Psalm 103:4).

Exodus 34:12, 15 Remember this verse when we get to Joshua 9:15.

Matthew 27:12

Matthew 27:1 – This “morning trial” was the third Jewish trial of Jesus, done to give a semblance of compliance to the requirement that judgment in a capital trial cannot occur the same day as the trial.

Matthew 27:16 The Unusual Films production Wine of Morning (1955) is based on what the life of Barabbas could have been.

Psalm 33:12 – Lloyd Larson based his choral work Blessed Is the Nation on this verse.

Psalm 9:4 – Let us turn into the house of wisdom, and feast on the provisions set before us!

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Daily Encouragement

February 11 – The Golden Calf, Trial of Jesus, and Hebrew Poetry

February 11
Exodus 32:1-33:23
Matthew 26:69-27:14
Psalm 33:1-11
Proverbs 8:33-36

Exodus 32:1 – We’re just a few days removed from:

  • God prohibiting Moses from making graven images (Exodus 20:4)
  • Moses telling this to Aaron and the people (Exodus 24:3)
  • the people pledging to obey (Exodus 24:3)
  • Moses writing it down (Exodus 24:4)
  • Moses reading it aloud (Exodus 24:7)
  • and the people publicly claiming again to obey (Exodus 24:7)
  • under a blood covenant (Exodus 24:8).
  • Aaron was given the special privilege of being invited (Exodus 24:1)
  • of coming up to the LORD (Exodus 24:9)
  • and seeing the LORD in His glory (Exodus 24:10)
  • and eating with the LORD (Exodus 24:11)
  • and then being delegated responsibility over the elders of Israel (Exodus 24:14)
  • Not only were the people and Aaron aware of the law, and not only was Aaron incredibly privileged by the LORD, but the LORD used Aaron’s name and preserved it in the Bible 40 times in the next 5 chapters. (Exodus 27:21-31:10).

In spite of this close relationship between Aaron and the LORD, Aaron leads the people in breaking the law – specifically the Second Commandment that was still fresh in their hearing – and personally making (32:4) a molten calf, declaring them to be the gods of Israel.

Ten Commandments Dedication – Picture courtesy Fraternal Order of Eagles
Go to 1 minute and 2 seconds

Exodus 32:22-24 – In the 1956 film The Ten Commandments, Aaron is portrayed squeamishly saying “The people made me do it.” (While the movie inspired the Fraternal Order of Eagles to present a monument of the Ten Commandments to the City of Milwaukee that was placed at the Zeidler Municipal Building in 1957, and dedicated with Yul Brynner, who played Ramses in the movie, the movie has several Biblical inaccuracies as well as the fact that ABR identifies the Pharaoh of the Exodus as Amenhotep II, not Ramses. That’s why we should go to our Bibles and not to Hollywood for the truth!)

Exodus 32:28 – A casual reader would wonder why God would be so angry to kill 3,000 people. But having looked at the context we saw earlier, the people had entered a blood covenant with the LORD to obey His command against idolatry.

Exodus 32:32 – compare to Paul in Romans 9:3. Moses and Paul loved their people; they were willing to go to hell for their people.

Matthew 27:1 – We have a formal trial of Jesus (in contrast to the illegal night examination of Jesus) when it was morning. They found Him guilty and delivered Him to Pilate for sentencing (v.2). However, under the Mishna this was illegal – capital cases cannot be done at night, nor finish on the same day for conviction.

Psalm 33 – Notice the use of the synonymous parallelism of Hebrew poetry: in verse 1 the first phrase starts with Rejoice, while the second phrase uses the similar word Praise. The first phrase ends with righteous, the second phrase uses the synonym upright. Throughout this Psalm we see the thought of the first phrase repeated in different words in the second phrase.

Proverbs 8:35, 36 – Unlike the synonymous parallelism of Psalm 33 – we see the use of contrasts. Find Wisdom, Find Life. Hate Wisdom, Love Death.

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Daily Encouragement

February 10 – Censuses, Tablets, and Legions

February 10
Exodus 30:11-31:18
Matthew 26:47-68
Psalm 32:1-11
Proverbs 8:27-32

Exodus 30:12 – Remember David and the Census? I Chronicles 21:12 will point back to the warning of a plague if there is a census without ransom. What’s the story behind the census tax? PastorRodney’s Blog says taking a census is a “violation of ownership” – a king cannot take inventory of God’s property. Nathan Albright’s blog estimates the cost of the tax at two days’ wages – “equal payment … for God is not a respecter of persons.” Rushdoony claims this was the only civil tax endorsed by God, while others say this was a clearly non-civil tax, but a religious tax to atone for a civil sin. How much was the tax (that presumably became the temple tax of Nehemiah 10:32 and Matthew)? Roughly $5 of today’s money.

Exodus 31:2 – Bezaleel – the man with the funny name – is one of the few people to be filled with the Holy Spirit in the Old Testament. In the OT the Spirit came and could leave (Judges 16:20 – Samson, 1 Samuel 16:14 – Saul).

Exodus 31:18 – Wouldn’t it be great to hold in your hands the two stone tables? Or even just a copy of them? Would you treasure them and look and study them often? We have the full revelation of the LORD in our hands! Congratulations on being committed to studying God’s Word and take some time to appreciate that just like God preserved His Words for Moses, He preserved His Words for you (Mark 13:31)!

Matthew 26:53 – How many is twelve legions? John Morris suggests 288,000. As the song says, “He could have called ten thousand angels, But He died alone for you and me.”

Psalm 32:8 Sally Atari has recorded a song Be Glad of which the first stanza is based on this verse, and the chorus is based on v. 11. The second verse is based on Psalm 78:1-2, and the third verse is based on Psalm 37:3-4.

Proverbs 8:27 – We have an abrupt start – Who is the “I”? Wisdom. In a way similar to love – God is love, but Love is not God; here God is Wisdom, but Wisdom is not God (v.30).

Share how reading thru the Bible has been a blessing to you! E-mail us at 2018bible@vcyamerica.org or call and leave a message at 414-885-5370.