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.

Daily Encouragement

February 9 – Blood for holiness, Blood for remission

February 9
Exodus 29:1-30:10
Matthew 26:14-46
Psalm 31:19-24
Proverbs 8:14-26

Exodus 29:12 – Blood is found 363 times in the Old Testament. We’ll read about blood sacrifices quite regularly. Hebrews 9:22 tells us “without shedding of blood is no remission.”

Exodus 30:9 – In a few days we’ll see how seriously God took a violation of this command (Leviticus 10:1).

Matthew 26:14 – Who is Judas? Chafer Theological Seminary published a helpful overview of the life of Judas Iscariot. (By the way, a good friend of mine did an interview with the new president of Chafer – keep our seminaries and Bible colleges in prayer that they hold faithful to the Word of God!)

The Last Supper, ca. 1520, by Giovanni Pietro Rizzoli,

Matthew 26:28 – As you read thru this passage, feel free to underline this verse. Jesus’ blood was shed for remission of our sins.

Psalm 31:24 – Sixteen times in the Old Testament we see “good courage.” What’s the conditions? Hope in the Lord (Psalm 31:24), Wait on the Lord (Psalm 27:14), Finish all the work for the Lord (I Chronics 28:20), fulfill the statutes of the LORD (I Chronicles 22:13),

Proverbs 8:22 – From John MacArthur: “As long as there has been God, there has been wisdom.” While Jehovah’s Witnesses claim this refers to Jesus, Stand to Reason shows why this doesn’t refer to Jesus but just a personification of wisdom.

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 8 – Beauty and the Judgment of the Nations

February 8
Exodus 28:1-43
Matthew 25:31-26:13
Psalm 31:9-18
Proverbs 8:12-13

Exodus 28:1 – In a few days we’ll hear more about Nadab and Abihu, but interestingly God throughout the Bible has called unregenerate people to serve Him. Jesus called Judas (Matthew 10:4) to be His disciple.

Exodus 28:40 – What were the two purposes for the clothing? Glory and beauty. God encourages us to think on lovely things (Philippians 4:8). AiG has an interesting thought – only a Designer can add beauty for the sake of beauty.

Matthew 25:31 – We are two thousand years closer to this date than the disciples were. At the Second Coming, at the start of the Millennium, our King will come in His Glory! Jesus is still on the Mount of Olives, telling His disciples about when He returns to the Mount of Olives in glory! (Acts 1:11).

Matthew 25:40 – Is Jesus teaching works salvation? Here’s what John MacArthur says:

“People who get confused here some how miss verse 34 because verse 34 makes it very clear the basis of their entrance into the Kingdom.  It’s extremely clear.  First of all, “Come…here comes number one point…ye blessed of My Father.”  That emphasizes the source of their salvation.  You are blessed of My Father.  You are entering into the Kingdom because My Father has determined to bless you…..And then it says, “Come you who are the blessed who belong to My Father, inherit…inherit,” which implies something very important.  You inherit something because you are born into a family, right?  It implies again that they belong to the family of God, to which you belong by faith.  You inherit what is yours because by faith you have become a joint heir with Christ, if we can sort of borrow Paul’s thought in Romans 8.”

https://www.gty.org/library/sermons-library/2380/the-judgment-of-the-nations-part-3

Matthew 25:41 – “Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:” Hell is Real.

Matson Photo Service, Ruins of House of Simon the Leper in Bethany

Psalm 31:18 – Take a second and enjoy the beautiful phrasing of the first phrase: the alliteration, and the contrast as the Psalmist calls for silence for the liars.

Proverbs 8:13 – What is your relationship with evil, pride, arrogancy, the evil way,  and the froward mouth?

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 7 – Tabernacles and Talents

February 7
Exodus 26:1-27:21
Matthew 25:1-30
Psalm 31:1-8
Proverbs 8:1-11

Exodus 26 & 27 are some of the passages that start getting into the “technical details.” Visualizing what the tabernacle looked like with a virtual tour may help to give some understanding to the passage.

The Parable of Wise and Foolish Virgins (unfinished)

Matthew 25:10 “and the door was shut” Perhaps you’ve been intrigued by the Bible and have joined us this year. If you know about the Bible but don’t personally know the Lord of the Bible, please call out to Him before the door is shut and its too late! Being a good person – is not good enough!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TCSUKIhjevo

Matthew 25:21, 23, 26. God has entrusted talents to His servants. A few years ago, Vic Eliason, who led what became VCY America into broadcast ministry, entered his eternal reward. Vic used the talents that God had given Him, and I am confident he heard the Lord tell him “Well done, thou good and faithful servant.” Will we hear “Well done” or will we hear “Thou wicked and slothful servant”?

Psalm 31:5 – Where have you heard this verse before? Jesus quoted this and many other Old Testament passages. While we may struggle with studying the Old Testament, remember that Jesus thought it was valuable and quoted it while on earth.

Proverbs 8:10 – What is better than silver, gold, and rubies? Wisdom! Reject the path of the simple and the fool, and follow wisdom!

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 6 – Feasts, Hornets, and Tabernacles

February 6
Exodus 23:14-25:40
Matthew 24:29-51
Psalm 30:1-12
Proverbs 7:24-27

Exodus 23:14 Keep track of the feasts – these will be the key points of the Hebrew Calendar. Unleavened Bread (Passover) (Exodus 23:15), Firstfruits (Pentecost) (Exodus 23:16), and Ingathering (Tabernacles) (Exodus 23:16).

Exodus 23:20-22 Who is this Angel that is to be obeyed? His voice is equivalent to God’s speaking?

Exodus 23:28 This is the first of three times hornets are mentioned in the Bible (Deuteronomy 7:20, Joshua 24:12). All referring to God driving out the Canaanites. BTW have you heard the Hornet Song?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0ykYwSTv8h8

Exodus 25 – What did the Tabernacle look like? Something perhaps like this?

Matthew 24:34 – What generation shall not pass? Some say the generation that saw Israel become a nation in 1948. Commentaries will give you many options. One hypothesis is that the generation that sees the start of the Olivet Discourse will see the end of the Olivet Discourse. Jimmy DeYoung concurs with that interpretation.

Psalm 30:5 – The great promise – “weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.” This inspired the song Joy Comes In the Morning.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N_yUd7f_S2c

Psalm 30:11-12 – These verses and others from this Psalm inspired the song Sing to the Lord and Be Not Silent.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4f5HbspnAQY

Proverbs 7:26 – Be careful of the strange woman. You may think you can stand, but “many strong men have been slain by her.”

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 5 – Torts, Talionis, and More Laws!

February 5
Exodus 21:22-23:13
Matthew 24:1-28
Psalm 29:1-11
Proverbs 7:6-23

Exodus 21:23 – Lex Talionis – the law of retaliation. Rather than encouraging violence, the point is to limit violence by keeping it from escalating- the response must be proportionate to the crime.

Exodus 21:28-29 – Tort law – the law of negligence. To those who know, there is more responsibility.

Exodus 22:22 – While we’re rolling thru the “statute law” of the Bible, it is interesting who God is protective of.

Exodus 23:4 – What else does God say about enemies? Proverbs 25:21, Matthew 5:43-44

Matthew 24 – Welcome to the Olivet Discourse – instead of listening to me – join Dr. Jimmy DeYoung for an introduction to the Olivet Discourse as recorded at the Taos Prophecy Conference. Or if you like reading, John Walvoord, president of Dallas Theological Seminary, has his book on the Olivet Discourse available free.

https://youtu.be/oBlI4636CS8

Psalm 29:11 – Go back to verse 1. We have a little chiasm here – the people ascribe the LORD strength, and in verse 11 the LORD will give strength unto his people.

Proverbs 7:10 – I’m glad I have a Proverbs 31 woman, not a Proverbs 7 woman! The man seeking a Proverbs 7 woman is as an ox to the slaughter (Proverbs 7:22). The man with a Proverbs 31 woman sits in the gates with the elders (Proverbs 31:23).

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 4 – The Ten Commandments

February 4
Exodus 19:16-21:21
Matthew 23:13-39
Psalm 28:1-9
Proverbs 7:1-5

Exodus 20 – We saw the preamble to the Covenant with the Israelites yesterday, today we see the Ten Commandments!  AlMohler.com reports “According to data from the Barna Research Group, 60 percent of Americans can’t name even five of the Ten Commandments. “No wonder people break the Ten Commandments all the time. They don’t know what they are,” said George Barna.”

I’ve taught Sunday School at various churches and sometimes will ask the class to show with their fingers which commandment is “Thou Shalt Not Kill.” Sadly very few in our Bible-preaching churches are fluent in the law. While many dismiss the Old Testament as irrelevant, we saw that Jesus directed the rich young man who wanted salvation right back to the law! Ray Comfort regularly takes people back to the law to show they are sinners in need of a Savior.

So how can you learn the Ten Commandments? You can learn all 10 with your fingers!

Exodus 21 – Welcome to the “statute law” of the Bible. After we finished reading thru the 10 Commandments, we are starting into the detailed laws, known as the 613 Commandments. Some liberals say this is a cheap knockoff of Hammurabi’s Code (see a replica in Chicago on one of our Chicago/Oriental Institute tours!) Many deal with the uncomfortable topic of slavery – but not as we are familiar with it being practiced:

Exodus 21:2 – Slavery is time limited, not perpetual.

Exodus 21:10 – Women have guaranteed rights, unlike under Hammurabi’s Code (146 & 147)

Exodus 21:16 – Enslavery is punished with death (Read about Missionary David Livingstone’s efforts to stop the slave trade)

For more information on this passage check out Bodie Hodge’s chapter “Doesn’t the Bible Support Slavery?” from Answers in Genesis.

Matthew 23 Hypocrisy is used 8 times in this chapter. If you have friends who don’t go to church because of the hypocrites, ask them if they ever heard what Jesus said about hypocrites!

Psalm 28:2 Is your first call to the stock broker? the therapist? your friends on Snapchat? Or is your first call in time of trouble to the Lord?

Proverbs 7:4-5 – Which woman do you spend time with? Wisdom, or the Strange Woman?

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 3 – Joshua, Jethro, Eagles and Preambles!

February 3
Exodus 17:8-19:15
Matthew 22:34-23:12
Psalm 27:7-14
Proverbs 6:27-35

Exodus 17:9 This is the first mention of Joshua in the Bible.  Joshua means “Jehovah is Salvation,” and transliterated into Greek becomes Jesus.

Exodus 18:11 Moses’ father-in-law wasn’t a believer, but was reached as Moses shared what God had done. But even one day old believer Jethro had wisdom for Moses (v.14, v.17-18). DesiringGod.org has an interesting observation on this passage:

Have you ever wondered why God, who gave Moses such detailed verbal instructions about things like the construction of the tabernacle and the keeping of the law, never instructed Moses on how he was to perform his role as judge in Israel? Instead he allowed Moses to struggle under an overbearing workload for a while and finally sends Jethro, Moses’s father-in-law, to be an organizational consultant. (If you’re curious why God may have done this – finish the article!)

Exodus 19:4 – “on eagle’s wings” – Maybe this reminds you of Isaiah 40:31, Psalm 91:4, a popular funeral song, the book or movie about the Ross Perot-organized rescue of Iranian hostages,  or the 1949 rescue of 50,000 Jews from Yemen that involved Alaska Airlines! Just a reminder that the Bible has a massive cultural influence, as well as its salvific power!

Exodus 19:5-6 Israel left Egypt (Exodus 12) walked thru the Red Sea (Exodus 14), rejoiced (Exodus 15), murmured (Exodus 16), fought (Exodus 17), organized the leadership (Exodus 18), and is now beginning to express its philosophy of government. Unlike our Preamble to the Constitution that begins “We the people of the United States…do ordain,” Israel’s begins “We the priests of the holy nation…do covenant.”

Biblical illustrations by Jim Padgett, courtesy of Sweet Publishing, Ft. Worth, TX, and Gospel Light, Ventura, CA.

Matthew 22:40 – 613 Old Testament laws of Moses were summarized in just two. Love God and Love others. But there are more commands than this in the New Testament! I’ll give you a sneak peak of a project to track all the Old Testament laws, the reiterations by the Prophets, and the New Testament Commands (843 is my latest count).

Psalm 27:14 Patch the Pirate has a great chorus based on this verse (the lyrics come from Matthew 7:7 and James 4:2)

https://youtu.be/KQkRI_NqtkQ?t=57s

Proverbs 6:27-35 A strong warning to those tempted to violate the Seventh Commandment (Exodus 20:14)

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.