Genesis 50:1 - Exodus 2:10
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Today is a big reading day! We finish up Genesis and begin Exodus! Genesis chapter 50 verses 19 & 20 stood out to me as Joseph spoke to his brothers: ""Don't be afraid of me. Am I God, to judge and punish you? As far as I am concerned, God turned into good what you meant for evil. He brought me to the high position I have today so I could save the lives of many people." Again, I am impressed with Joseph's character here. His brothers seemed to think that Joseph hadn't really forgiven them, and that he was waiting to get back at them after their father had passed away. But, I think we see here that Joseph had truly forgiven his brothers! It was water under the bridge. And not only had Joseph forgiven them, but he saw the power of how God turned something bad into something incredibly good. I wonder about this in our lives today - do we truly forgive other people like Joseph forgave his brothers? Or, do we maybe hold some piece of unforgiveness within us? Maybe we keep bringing up the wrong that somebody did to us? Maybe we do this to make them feel a bit guilty from time to time? Will we instead fully forgive and fully move forward?
One interesting side note in chapter 50 was the embalming of Jacob & Joseph. Embalming was an Egyptian custom - not a Hebrew custom. Some commentaries suggest that Jacob & Joseph were likely being respectful of the Egyptian customs of the day. The Egyptians believed in an afterlife - and believed that the embalming allowed the deceased to utilize their body in the afterlife. Below is an illustration from the 13th century "Psalter of St. Louis" of Jacob´s corpse being laid in the tomb by his twelve sons:
Date: 1420 or 1220 B.C.
Content: The book of Exodus deals with the significant facts surrounding Israel’s emergence as a nation. Moses’ great leadership is described as he accepted God’s call to return to Egypt in order to lead God’s people to freedom. God sent the ten devastating plagues upon Egypt because the Pharaoh refused to obey his command. The ceremony of Passover was established during the last plague and became a memorial of God’s deliverance for all time to Israel. The Israelites crossed the sea and arrived at Mt. Sinai where God gave the Ten Commandments and the plan for the tabernacle, and the covenant was renewed the nation.
Theme: The power of God over evil is clearly shown when God defeats the enemy of his people by delivering them from bondage, but God expects that we trust and obey him in return. Worship in the Tabernacle and adherence to the law were two aspects of Israel’s obedience. (Above commentary is from Tyndale Publishers “The One Year Bible Companion” pages 1-2) Terrific in-depth commentary on the book of Exodus can be found at bible.org at this link.
In Exodus chapter 1 verse 12 is awesome: "But the more the Egyptians oppressed them, the more quickly the Israelites multiplied!" It's amazing how when God wants people to flourish, they flourish! Even in the midst of oppression. This verse kind of reminds me of the flourishing of churches over the centuries and even today where the body of Christ is still often oppressed. It flourishes! Praise God for flourishing his people then - and now!
In Exodus chapter 2 we are first introduced to Moses, who is the author of this book of Exodus - along w/ the overall first 5 books of the Old Testament - also known as the Pentateuch or the Books of Law. A fun little Bible factoid for you in Exodus chapter 2 verse 6 is that this is the only mention anywhere in the Bible of a baby crying! :) "When the princess opened it, she saw the baby. The little boy was crying, and she felt sorry for him. “This must be one of the Hebrew children,” she said."
Worship Video: Today's readings reminded me of the Needtobreathe song "Multiplied" with a great live acoustic fireside version here:
Has your love for God been multiplied? Click here for multiplication!
Comments from You: What verses or insights stand out to you in today's readings? Please post up by clicking on the "Comments" link below!
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