Joshua 16:1-18:28 ~ Luke 19:1-27 ~ Psalm 87:1-7 ~ Proverbs 13:11
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Old Testament - In Joshua chapter 18 verse 1 today we read - "Now that the land was under Israelite control, the entire Israelite assembly gathered at Shiloh and set up the Tabernacle." Shiloh was located about 25 miles north of Jerusalem. The tabernacle remained in Shiloh throughout the period of the Judges, or about 300 years. We will later read about Samuel traveling to Shiloh with his family. Click here for some interesting facts on Shiloh. The tabernacle at Shiloh may have looked something like this -
Below is an image of the Shiloh Valley today. You can see some of the ruins on the hillside to the lower right.
New Testament - Today in Luke chapter 19 we read the awesome story of Jesus’ interactions with Zacchaeus the Tax Collector. As we read through this story about Zacchaeus “the sinner,” does anything maybe correlate with our life story today? Consider verse 9 – “Jesus said to Zacchaeus, “Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham. For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost.” What does this mean that Jesus came to seek and to save what was lost? Did Jesus seek Zacchaeus? Did Jesus save Zacchaeus? Now, take a moment if you will to reflect back on your life and your interactions with Jesus. Like Zacchaeus, were you a “sinner?” Like Zacchaeus, did Jesus seek you? Are there moments in your life where you really have felt that Jesus literally has been “pursuing” you? (I know I have had these moments in my life – thank God for them!) And, most importantly – like Zacchaeus – has Jesus saved you?
Interesting! The Story of the Ten Servants is something I reflected on back in our readings of Matthew. But what stood out to me today was verse 11 - "The crowd was listening to everything Jesus said. And because he was nearing Jerusalem, he told a story to correct the impression that the Kingdom of God would begin right away." This is very interesting to note that Jesus told this story to correct the impression that the Kingdom would begin right away! The Jewish people were looking for a Messiah that would overthrow the Roman political structure. A fighting / revolutionary Messiah that would free Jerusalem from Rome. Instead, as we all know, Jesus died on a cross with nails that were driven into his hands and feet by Roman soldier. Not quite what the Jews at this time were expecting in a Messiah... And here we have this story that's purpose is to show the Kingdom would not begin right away. This makes sense. It is the paradox of the Kingdom of God being already / not yet. And while Jesus first came to usher in the Kingdom, its fulfillment is not complete until his Second Coming. And - while we are awaiting the fulfillment of the Kingdom, how are we utilizing the talents God has given us? How are we utilizing our time, treasure, and talents? Is it for the Kingdom's benefit?
Bible.org's commentary on our Luke chapter 19 readings today titled "The Nobleman: His Slaves and His Citizens" is at this link.
Psalms - Psalm 87 is a celebration of Jerusalem as the City of God, as we read in verse 3 - "O city of God, what glorious things are said of you!" As we continue to read through the One Year Bible this year it is amazing to reflect upon how much focus there is on Jerusalem as the city of God. Truly, so many of the Psalms glorify Jerusalem, often as a foreshadowing of the Heavenly City of God. Indeed, as this verse suggests, many glorious things are said of Jerusalem in the Bible!
Proverbs - Proverbs 13 verse 11 is a great verse to consider as we watch those late night TV infomercials... :) - "Wealth from get-rich-quick schemes quickly disappears; wealth from hard work grows." Are we focusing our working lives on working hard or trying to get rich quick...
Worship God: Today's readings in Luke about Zacchaeus the tax collector reminded me of the Switchfoot song "Dare you to move!" Here's an acoustic version of this song:
Have you moved toward God? I dare you to move!
Please join us in memorizing and meditating on a verse of Scripture today: "Wealth from get-rich-quick schemes quickly disappears; wealth from hard work grows over time." Proverbs 13:11 NLT
Prayer Point: Pray that you will not pursue wealth from get-rich-schemes. Pray that you will work hard, give and save money, while growing your wealth over time. Pray that your ultimate investments are in God's Kingdom and not in the markets of this world.
Comments from You & Questions of the Day: Have you every fallen prey to the idea of "getting rich quick"? Do you see the wisdom of hard work over get-rich-quick schemes? From which avenue does true wealth ultimately come from? And, really, what is true wealth? Is it what the world offers or perhaps something God offers? Also, what verses or insights stand out to you in today's readings? Please post up by clicking on the "Comments" link below!