Daily Encouragement

July 17 – Meet Asaph “Officially!”

1 Chronicles 24:1-26:11
Romans 4:1-12
Psalm 13:1-6
Proverbs 19:15-16

1 Chronicles 24:2 — Nadab and Abihu are mentioned together in 1 Chronicles only 3 times, the first mention of them since Numbers 26:61. Interestingly, Korah is also found in the genealogies of 1 Chronicles 6:37. Apparently, Korah’s son Ebiasaph did not join his father’s company (Numbers 16:16) when they reported to Moses. As a result, he didn’t join his father’s tents (Numbers 16:24, Numbers 16:27) or suffer his father’s demise (Numbers 16:32)). Uzzah (1 Chronicles 13:10) joins Nadab and Korah among those directly slain by the LORD; the details were recorded by the Chronicler as a warning.

1 Chronicles 25:1 — This is the first time we’ve met Asaph in the chronological books, but we’ve read a dozen of his other writings: Asaph is the attributed author of Psalm 50 and Psalms 73-83. The Chronicler is showing the connection between the descendants of Asaph that came to rebuild Jerusalem (Ezra 2:41, Ezra 3:10, Nehemiah 7:44, Nehemiah 11:22, Nehemiah 12:45) 500 years after they served in Solomon’s Temple.

1 Chronicles 25:7-8 — The Benson Commentary on the Old and New Testaments says: “All that were cunning — who were so skillful that they were able to teach others.” God used both the skill they had developed and what people may call “luck” to staff the music needs. The “casting of lots” is actually a biblically prescribed method (see Leviticus 16:8, Numbers 26:55, Numbers 33:54, Numbers 34:13, Joshua 13:6, Joshua 14:2, 1 Samuel 14:41, Proverbs 16:33, and let’s not forget Jonah 1:7). God expects our best, He wants our best, and He has long lists to show His orderliness (we saw several examples of people who were killed for breaking His order).

Romans 4:2 — Surely, if anyone could have been saved by works, it was Father Abraham! God must have been impressed with his goodness to have rewarded him as a Father of Many Nations (Genesis 17:5), especially since he was recognized for even his future acts (Genesis 18:19). Keep in mind that Abraham disobeyed God’s first command to him (Genesis 12:1); he didn’t leave his father’s house but followed his father, Terah, to Haran first (Genesis 11:31). In addition, notice that at the time he was rewarded, his reward wasn’t for any past actions but actions he hadn’t done yet (Genesis 18:19). No, Abraham had nothing to glory in – he just believed God (Galatians 3:6, James 2:23). In fact, Paul will go on to show that he had not even been circumcised yet (Romans 4:10-17)!

Romans 4:7 — Paul quotes David (Psalm 32:1-2) while outlining the case for imputed righteousness. God makes us righteous not because of our works but in spite of our works. That is the blessing that causes David to shout for joy (Psalm 32:11)!

Psalm 13:5 — David rejoices in God’s salvation. This is not because of his works but because of the mercy of the LORD! And again, we see David rejoicing verbally, this time in song (Psalm 13:6).

Proverbs 19:16 — There is a teaching going around that claims that because God didn’t warn Adam and Eve specifically about the flames of hell in order to motivate their obedience, either a) God isn’t fair, or b) hell was invented in the Dark Ages in order to motivate obedience. Even though this false dichotomy is most often taught by the Jehovah’s Witnesses and those who want to disconnect the Old Testament and the New Testament, many others have hopped on this train as well (see below the comments in David Kowalski’s article). Similar to the Jehovah’s Witnesses teaching, these “copycats” deny that the Jesus Christ of the New Testament is One with the God of the Old Testament. However, God’s motive for not fully explaining the doctrine of hell in Genesis 1 was not to trick us – our life as a follower of the LORD is greater than just avoiding hellfire. Throughout the Bible we have a choice between following the commands of the LORD and enjoying His fellowship and blessing, or disobeying and suffering death and judgment:

  • In Genesis 2:17, Adam and Eve were given a choice – the tree of life or the tree of death;
  • In Deuteronomy 30:19, the Israelites were given the choice between life and death, between obeying the LORD and experiencing His blessings, or disobeying Him and suffering His curses;
  • In Daniel 12:2, we are made aware that either everlasting life or everlasting contempt will be meted out at the resurrection;
  • In Matthew 25:46, Jesus makes it very clear that there are only two futures that should concern us: either enjoying eternal life or suffering eternal punishment;
  • Here in Proverbs 19:16, life and death are again the options given for us to consider.

Share how reading through 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.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *