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Genesis is a great book of FIRSTS, among them are the FIRST mention of:

Trinity - 1:26
Fear - 3:1
Messiah – 3:15
Sacrifice of animal - 3:21
Murder - 4:8
Just to mention a few.

Our Matthew reading:
First I would like to say Matthew is so exciting for the MANY old testament references referred to and fulfilled in Jesus.

ALSO
The Old Testament, written over a 1,000 year period, contains over 300 references to the coming Messiah. All of these were fulfilled in Jesus Christ, and they established a solid confirmation of His credentials as the Messiah.

Many of the prophecies concerning the messiah were totally beyond human control:

Birth: Place, time, manner of.

Death: Peoples reactions, piercing of side, burial

Resurrection: Where did His body go?

The chance of any one man fulfilling all of 48 prophecies is one in 10 to the 157 power. The electron is about as small an object as we can imagine. if we had a cubic inch of these electrons and tried to count them, it would take us (at 250 per minute) 19,000 time 19,000 time 19,000 years to count them. Now mark one of them, and thoroughly stir it into the whole mass. What chance does our blindfolded man have of finding the right electron? --- The same chance as one man of fulfilling 48 of the prophecies about Christ, without being the Son of God!

Jesus Christ fulfilled every prophecy written about the coming Messiah --- over three hundred of them! Would that have been possible had He not been the Son of God?

Also love having a daily reading from Psalms and Proverbs.

Have a blessed year reading the Bible together.

Genesis is a great book of FIRSTS, among them are the FIRST mention of:

Trinity - 1:26
Fear - 3:1
Messiah – 3:15
Sacrifice of animal - 3:21
Murder - 4:8
Just to mention a few.

Our Matthew reading:
First I would like to say Matthew is so exciting for the MANY old testament references referred to and fulfilled in Jesus.

ALSO
The Old Testament, written over a 1,000 year period, contains over 300 references to the coming Messiah. All of these were fulfilled in Jesus Christ, and they established a solid confirmation of His credentials as the Messiah.

Many of the prophecies concerning the messiah were totally beyond human control:

Birth: Place, time, manner of.

Death: Peoples reactions, piercing of side, burial

Resurrection: Where did His body go?

The chance of any one man fulfilling all of 48 prophecies is one in 10 to the 157 power. The electron is about as small an object as we can imagine. if we had a cubic inch of these electrons and tried to count them, it would take us (at 250 per minute) 19,000 time 19,000 time 19,000 years to count them. Now mark one of them, and thoroughly stir it into the whole mass. What chance does our blindfolded man have of finding the right electron? --- The same chance as one man of fulfilling 48 of the prophecies about Christ, without being the Son of God!

Jesus Christ fulfilled every prophecy written about the coming Messiah --- over three hundred of them! Would that have been possible had He not been the Son of God?

Also love having a daily reading from Psalms and Proverbs.

Have a blessed year reading the Bible together.

I was struck in today's reading with Genesis 3:5. The serpent was, and still is, wise on what would entice us humans. He suggested that "you will be like God, knowing good and evil." It seems that so often this is the root of sin, at least for me. I want to be like God, I want to have ultimate authority, I want to be in control. This verse is a good reminder to me that this is a lie of the devil.

I have always been inspired by a picture of the salvation story I see wrapped up in Genesis 3, around the Fall of Man. I think I may have posted about it this time last year too.

Firstly, Genesis 3:10, Adam and Eve are hiding themselves because they are naked, and this is the shame because of their sin - compare Genesis 2:25 and 3:7. I am fascinated by how Adam and Eve sew fig leaves together to cover their nakedness (their shame) and how they try to hide themselves. This reminds me of what we, as humans try to do until we reach out and accept God's grace; even in the church we try to earn our way back, our own works, our own attempts at getting over our sin and shame. It's almost humorous how Adam and Eve think they will keep it hidden from God when he comes walking through, but of course God sees everything (Genesis 3:11). How amazing and how loving that He still wants us, even in our sin.

In light of all this, Genesis 3:21, God makes the first blood sacrifice - garments of skin - and this reminds me of the eternal sacrifice that Jesus made on the cross for all of us, atoning for us. Again another reminder in Genesis 3:24 - God stations the cherubim and flaming sword to guard the way to the tree of life. We can't get to the tree and to eternal life by ourselves - nor can we even find it. There is one way and one way only, and that is through the blood of Jesus Christ.

Hallelujah!

Thomas.

"Serve the LORD with reverent fear, and rejoice with trembling."(Ps 2:10)

Reading this line reminded me of a wonderful sermon recently delivered. In relating the theological analogy that CS Lewis wove in The Chronicles of Narnia, he quoted a dialogue between the children regarding Aslan, the Christ figure. One child asked if Aslan is Safe. The child responds that surely cannot be considered Safe. He is, however, Good.
Good, indeed!

One more reflection on Cain and Abel, and it's regarding expectations. Cain expected his offering to be accepted by the Lord but it was not. There are many times I've found myself disappointed when I expected God to do things in my life (like cure my father's cancer) that didn't happen. The truth is that the Lord's ways are so far beyond my comprehension that I can't possibly begin to sense or see them. What is important is that I respond humbly and faithfully, and continue to trust that His ways are way better and bigger than my own!

Question regarding Cain in Genesis 4. It says that Cain "lay with his wife" (NIV). Then in Genesis 4:25 it is mentioned that Adam and Eve have another child, Seth. So are we to believe that God created other humans apart from Adam and Eve (not mentioned) or that Adam and Eve had a daughter (not mentioned) that Cain married?

Answer to own question:
Didn't do my research before posting. Apparently

- Adam and Eve had many sons and daughters ("Be fruitful, and multiply" (Genesis 1:28) and (Genesis 5:4 "And the days of Adam after he had fathered Seth were eight hundred years. And he fathered sons and daughters." No mention as to _when_ these sons and daughters were born)

-Cain was afraid "they" would kill him for killing Abel (who other than relatives would have any interest in doing this?)

-Further .. there are good explenations as to why borther-sister marriages where ok back then (gene pool no cluttered back then etc.) Not saying it's ok now though! Forbidden by God 400 years later in the laws given to Moses (gene pool probably cluttered by then .. as I see it, something caused by the Fall, as in everything was perfect before the Fall and everything has slowly deteriorated since then)

So there, there is plenty more material on the subject but I rest my case with this :)

Here's a good link on the subject: http://www.christiananswers.net/q-aig/aig-c004.html

As always while reading Genesis 3, I wonder about the presence of the Devil. Why would God allow the Devil into Eden in the first place? If God is the creator of everything, does it mean the Devil was created by God too? If so, does this mean God had planned for the original sin to take place?

Today, I seem to have found an answer. Adam and Eve committed the original sin not because God planned it to be that way, but because God had given them free will. Having created human beings in the image of Himself, it makes sense that God would allow human beings free will as well. And free will is not something you can give in varying degrees! We lack the infinite knowledge that the Lord has, so with free will we are bound to make mistakes. So why would God give us something as risky as free will? I think it's so that when we do good, our actions are really worth something. If we were created with the ability to do only good, what value is there in us doing good?

With regards to the Devil. I think the Devil's existence is a corollary of God's creation. Recall in Genesis 1, God saw that his creations was GOOD. 'Good' would be an empty concept without 'bad'. I think we are all the more grateful for God's goodness and greatness precisely because we are well aware of the ill-intentions of the Devil.

best,
Kristy

I am reminded again in Genesis the attractiveness of sin. It has an allure...it promises something, but delivers a lie. It causes a discontentment, but truely our contentment can only be found in obedience to a loving God. When we sin, are we not questioning the veracity of God? The sin was not eating the fruit, the sin was disobeying and not believing God's words. This year, my prayer is that I will choose to believe God, who He is, and what He says and not fall for the empty promises Satan proposes daily.

There are times that I have really wondered about Cain and his truly unjustified rage. But, oddly enough, if we look very closely, we see this sad state in much fo our society. Insted of taking the time to correct a mistake, harming someone else is done. I just thought that was interesting. Wonderful day of reading. Happy New Year to all!

why didn't God look with favor on Cain's offering? Commentaries I've read suggest that Cain's offering was a careless or thoughtless offering whereas Abel's offering was a choice or generous offering.----- My comments:
Keep this in mind as we study the sanctuary in Exodus and onward. The sanctuary and its services are so often ignored, but show the whole plan of salvation! The slain lamb represents Jesus, who died for us. Thus, I suspect that once sin entered, God showed, by example what would happen to Jesus - that our sins would kill Him. As a reminder of what He would do, and of what sin would do, I think God instructed the first family to slay a lamb for their sins. --it would certainly make me think before doing something I believed was sin! If such was the case, then Abel did as he might have been instructed, and Cain, with his own self-justification, decided it really didn't matter what was brought to God's altar. Thus his sin and God's displeasure.

As I read the title of the OT passage my heart sank...the fall of man.Many thoughts and questions ran through my head last year,how come Israel didn't know Jesus was the Messiah,it seemed so clear,why are people pulling out of churches,why is God's word sounding so much different these days in different churches.Here in Romania,a person who is seen/heard to be reading the bible is considered to be of a different religion apart from the "true"state religion;greek orthodox.
First of all Eve wasn't there when God told Adam not to eat from the tree of life,that didn't exempt her from the law.She was supposed to listen to Adam to whom God gave the law...Adam was silent.
From one act of disobedience,sin abounded.Cain killed Abel,Lamech 4 generations later killed two people...I'm sure the older generations are appalled at what's going on today...and sin increases.
Mathew 24:12 And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold.
Last year as I looked through the church history,I noticed how our early"church fathers"began to turn away from God's law...soon enough the doctrine"God's so gracious that you don't need to be Holy"began.Cain inspite of his sins did get a warning from God"And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door; and its desire is for you, (AM)but you must master it." He went on ahead to sin.I believe we need to be aware that we need to meditate on God's law day and night to be firmly planted....May God be with us all during these days for surely we can see how hard it is to love God and love one another because most of us are burning candles at both ends,time seems shorter,challenges at work/home increase all the time...
God bless you all

"The Lord God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them." Genesis 3:21

Wow! Even in their sin, God provided for Adam and Eve. He must truly be a loving God!

One Day late:)
roll-call questions
1) finished reading bible for the first time last year. Only was able to do research until October when computer crashed and workload tripled.

2)goal: to examine bible this year in terms of man's relationship with God, and to pursue a thread of thought from Genesis to Revelations of having to rely, trust in, and depend on God and how that links with salvation.

3)Finish above and be able to research Oct--Dec. readings.

5)Romans

6)I have about 2,000 emails to go through (tomorrow :(), so if you wrote me - I will get back to you. Accepted Jesus Christ 2 1/2 years ago at the age of 48.
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I am not going to be as exhaustive in commenting as last year :). Will be doing more quick hits and food for thought. Email me at link if something I say interests you.
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Quick hits on 1/01/07 readings:

Gen1&2
I see the Bible as the story of God's relationship with man - how it was broken, and God's plan to restore that relationship and how the story ends.

Genesis 1 is then, to me, a prologue. Setting the scene. It is not meant to be an exhaustive explanation of creation. If you want to explore creation theory, as opposed to what the press and science textbooks say - I suggest:
http://www.answersingenesis.org/
There are plenty of articles and question and answer sections. Articles range from technical, to semi-technical, to basic.

It is enough for me to know that everything began with God's spoken Word, and that to read and study His word is important to a Christian.

"Let us make man in our image, in our likeness,..."

'our image and likeness' - a backing of the trinity concept

God is a spirit - so what gives? I think God views not our physical bodies but our PERSONHOOD. That is what is eternal - whether condemned or saved.

What is unique in our Personhood, as the highest order created by God, from the rest of Creation? If the eternal Trinity loved, communicated, possessed knowledge, had morality, creativity, etc., I think these are examples of what God is getting at when it is said - we are created in His image and likeness.

[Morality: This is why a great many non-believers can do good and loving acts, it is inherant in our personhood. You do not have to believe in God or accept Christ as your Savior to be inclined to do good.]

The Trinity was in a relationship eternally, and I think that a human's need for relationship is a reflection of the personhood created by God. We will not be completely satisified in our relationships until we have re-established a relationship with God. It can be done, but on his terms - not ours :) An article and a sermon regarding image and likeness at these links.
http://home.att.net/~jamspsu84/ttocimage.html
http://www.biblebb.com/files/mac/90-218.htm

Genesis 2:
With the backdrop set, the story of God's realationshp with man begins. Boundries are set (command regarding the tree) and a helper is provided.

Gen1:18 The LORD God said, "It is not good for the man to be alone..." Underscoring again the need for relationships.
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Matthew 1&2

Genealogy of Jesus: This is Joseph's genealogy and it underscores why it HAD TO BE a virgin birth.

Matt1:12 12After the exile to Babylon:
Jeconiah was the father of Shealtiel,

As we will find out in Jeremiah 22, Jeconiah is cursed and no descendant of his will sit on David's throne.

Joseph's seed could not mingle with Mary. However, Jesus as Joseph's oldest (adopted) son had all the legal rights to the throne. (By Jewish Law). That is what Matthew is intending to establish as his gospel is written for the Jewish nation. Israel is wating for a bona-fide king and Matthew is providing the background check (here) :)

Ain't God grand? He not only had a solution for the problem of Jeconiah, but he allowed it to be foretold centuries before Jesus' birth.

As to those who do not believe in "virgin birth" idea - I guess the question is: Are you saying God could not perform that kind of birth????

Magi: "At the time of Christ in the eastern empire, there was a ruling body called the Megistanes, who would be similar in function to the United States Senate. It was totally composed of Magi who had the right of absolute choice for the selection of a king. They were king-makers....When the Magi arrived in Jerusalem asking for the whereabouts of the new king that had been born, Herod got panicky, knowing that those Persian king-makers had come to find their king."
http://www.biblebb.com/files/mac/sg2182.htm

If Herod was so troubled why did he not just get rid of the magi - the way he did all the 2 and under babies?

Probably because the magi came in a caravan with bodyguards etc. There is nothing to indicate there were only three magi in the bible (that is extra-biblical).

I think it is interesting to ponder the concept that Daniel was so loyal and obediant to God during the Babylonian captivity that he may have caused some of the Babylonian magi to become believers in the God of Israel through his lifestyle testimony.

Contrary to manger scenes - the magi came to (in the Greek) - a "house" indicating that it was a time past the birth of Christ as Joseph and Mary had settled in Bethlehem.

The magi gave gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. I think they may also have symbolized a Gentile acknowledgment of Christ's birth?????

Gold - for kings
Frankincense - for deity. Exodus 30:34-38 tells us that the incense was for God, not the people.
Myrrh - was the gift that spoke of Christ's mortality, since it was used to embalm the bodies of the dead.

The magi left a different way due to a message from God - God always is in control. He has and will always thwart the plans of his adversary(ies) regarding his Will and plan for mankind.

THE SERPENT

For those bothered with the story of a serpent deceiving Eve. A repost from last year:

Some people have trouble with a talking serpant (snake) deceiving Eve in the garden. Me too, I just accepted it as something I could not understand. Then I picked up a copy of Bullinger's "Companion Bible". Bullinger breaks down Hebrew and Greek text to the minutest detail. He seems to know the forms of literature, differing styles, words and their roots, construction styles of the passages, etc. He is great on Figures of Sppech. Bullinger offers an explanation of Garden scene that seems plausible to me. Let's look at it:

Satan was not a serpent. He came to Eve as an "angel of light". Eve had communed with God. She had seen His glory and light, she was not scared or put off by a "shining being" who spoke well and engaged her in dialogue. This "shining being" deceived Eve, and got her to doubt God's Word.

Oh come on! How did Bullinger come up with this scenario?

Hebrew word for "serpent" is "nachash" and literally, yes, it means serpent or snake. But the root of the word means: "shining whisperer," "shining enchanter."
http://headcoverings-by-devorah.com/HebglossN.html

So Bullinger is saying that instead of using a literal translation of "nachash", one should look at it figuratively using the root. He gives an example of "nachash" used in Numbers 21:8. Bullinger also asserts that Gen3 is in the hebrew literary style of "Intorversion". That the cherubim in the last verse (Gen3:24) must be offset with another similar spirit being in the first verse. If your curiosity is piqued, I encourage you to read the appendix 19 from the "Companion Bible" at this link:
http://www.ovrlnd.com/Teaching/serpentofgen.html

Lest we be too quick to dismiss Bullinger as an over the top micronaalyzer, recall Pauls description of Satan in 2Cor11:14

"And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light."

[NOTE: In Genesis 3, it is possible that nachash is used in the verbal form as a noun. If that is the case, the proper translation of hanachash in Genesis 3 would be "the Shining one." This understanding of nachash fits in very well with Paul's description of Satan appearing as an "angel of light" (II Cor. 11:14).]
http://users.aristotle.net/~bhuie/satan.htm

Paul was describing false apostles that were coming to the Corinthians as servents of righteousness (GOD). Do you not believe this - Satan himself masquerades as an "angel of light".

Where does Paul get this idea of an "angel of light"? It could have been a reference from Job 38:4 (morning stars). But perhaps through Christ and the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, Paul knew the story of the Garden and it was the "shining one" before Eve.
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GETTING BACK TO ADAM

Let's assume that Bullinger is correct. If so, then Adam would have known that the "shining one" that deceived Eve was an adversary of God. A good clue was when God cursed the "shining one":).

Adam is intelligent. He would have gotten the symbolism in Gen3 concerning Eve's curse when referencing it back to the seeds of Satan and woman. Some descendant would defeat the "shining one".

Adam's relationship with God was broken, but he had hope that it would be restored due to God's Word. Even if Adam did not "get it all" in Gen3, there is nothing to say Adam did not ask God later. Remember God talked to Cain, so communication was not cut off completely.

When Eve gave birth to Cain, even his name might imply that she thought this would be the "redeemer" - the one to make things right.

Cain - Acquire; to get

Eve said, "With the help of the LORD I have brought forth (the) man." Gen 4:1
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Ok. I will admit to some different thinking in this theory, but I do not believe it violates Scripture. Just a different way of looking at the garden scene. Just something for people, that have an interest, to chew on :)

Gen 3

Funny how the lies from God's adversary (Satan)have not changed over thousands of years. They are even now reflected in the New Age movement of spirituality.

Gen3:4-5
"You will not surely die," the serpent said to the woman. "For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil."

"You will not surely die" - doubt of God's Word. Literal back then, and the Bible today.

"eyes will be opened" - you can gain spiritual enlightenment on your own.

"you will be like God" - pantheism.

"knowing good and evil" - man can determine good and evil without God. Moral relativism.

If nothing else, satan is consistent.

Gen3:21 The LORD God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them.

(Right on Thomas!)

Atonement in Hebrew (kaphar) means to cover.

So here is the first look at substitutionary death by an innocent victim to provide a garment of covering for an unworthy sinner. God Himself chooses the substitute. God Himself executes the substitute. They didn't ask for it. They didn't participate in it. God did it. He acted in grace towards the sinner. And grace comes in because God initiates the covering; God initiates the satisfaction; God initiates the atonement. - John MacArthur
http://www.biblebb.com/files/mac/90-247.htm

Just like Adam and Eve had to depend on God - we, as sinners, must also depend on God for our atonement. It is not about anything we can do - but what God's grace and mercy provide for us through Jesus Christ.
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Gen 4

To deb: Why was Cain's sacrifice unacceptable?

Let me add to your thought. I agree that God had communicated what was a proper sacrifice - the shedding of innocent blood. God communicated with Adam after the "fall", and with Cain after the murder of Abel - so there is no reason to think there was no communication inbetween.

Cain could have traded some of his harvest for a lamb (from Abel), but instead he went to God and offered HIS best works - the fruits of HIS toil.

1John3:12
"Do not be like Cain, who belonged to the evil one and murdered his brother. And why did he murder him? Because his own actions were evil and his brother's were righteous." NIV

I believe Cain belonged to the evil one before the sacrifice. Cain bought into the lie. Cain believed that he could bring to God - through the sweat of his brow - something as good as the blood of an innocent animal.

Cain did not listen to the Word of God, instead he relied on himself and his works to please God. It did not please God. His actions were evil because Cain did not rely on the Word of God and obey it. Cain was righteous because through faith in God - he did listen and obey.

It is the same with us. The Bible is the Word of God. It clearly states in the gospels that you must believe and receive Jesus Christ to attain eternal life. Yet how many people (who have exposed to the Word of God) continue to insist that they will get to heaven because they are a good person and have done good works in their life. For those people - sadly - the result will be the same as with Cain, except it will be eternal banishment from God.
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Matthew 2&3

Matthew is writing to a Jewish audience. They have been waiting for a king as prophesied in OT. Here, in continuing the gospel, Matthew is pointing out to the Jewish readers that Jesus WAS fulfilling prophecy - Citing Hosea, Jeremiah, and Isaiah. Jesus was and is their King.

If you have trouble with,
"He will be called a Nazarene." not being in the OT. You might look at John MacArthur's sermon here:
http://www.biblebb.com/files/mac/sg2186.htm

A word on Satan being in the Garden of Eden – Before man was ever created, God gave man the power to rule over everything on earth (Genesis 1:26-27) and that includes Satan! Satan can tempt us but he cannot have power over us unless we give that power to him. We will be tempted by Satan just as Christ was tempted by Satan, but we need to claim the power that was given to us before we were created and use that power to thwart off the temptations of Satan and worldly sinful delights.

A word on Adam and Eve being the first man and woman God created – Adam and Eve INDEED were the first man and woman created by God! About that, there should never be a doubt. However, the scripture does not say they were the only ones created by God. We should not place God in a box and limit His powers. He is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow. He can and does perform miracles over, and over, and over. Praise the Lord!

God Bless!

Thoughts arising from a couple of Mike's questions:

Re: What is your reaction to reading about The Fall in Genesis today?

I am sorry it happened so soon in the story. It would have been nice to hear some more about life in the good times before The Fall. And now we are heading into a year less one day of reading about the troubles and disasters that are consequences of The Fall and about God's efforts to provide us with a means of rescue.

Re: Do you believe Jesus has saved us from The Fall?

Well, it appears that even Jesus cannot turn the clock back. So we are stuck with the aftermath of The Fall. However, He has done something better than saving us. He has shifted us to the next level. He has rescued us from the Law (which was one of God's attempts at salvation). There is a huge difference between life in Christ and life under the law. There is a paradigm shift . Life under the law and life in Christ are different worlds.

"He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross." (Col 2:14 TNIV)

So we are free to live in Christ. We are walking around with the Spirit of God in us. That has massive implications. The Spirit of God, the creator of the universe, dwells in us. The Spirit we read about yesterday in Gen 1:1-2.

"First this: God created the Heavens and Earth—all you see, all you don't see. Earth was a soup of nothingness, a bottomless emptiness, an inky blackness. God's Spirit brooded like a bird above the watery abyss." (The Message)

So that's far more than just saving us from The Fall.

I a bit unclear about "one of God's attempt at salvation"....it would seem that God tried his hand at saving us but failed.
Life under the law as I understood from last years reading had something to do with the atonement of sin....which didn't remove the sin...only covered it....Jesus our High Priest died so that if we do sin,His sacrifice would not just cover the sin but will cleanse it completely if we confess it,giving us access to the father.
I know the law vs grace is a huge topic of dispute and I really pray for clarification on this issue...would welcome any corrections in my line of thinking.
God bless you all

I like v.8 "Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the LORD God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day". How incredible to think of God walking through the garden. Adam had it all, but blew it big, for all of us! of course he blamed the woman or really God and she blamed the serpent. Its our fallen nature that wants to blame others for our trespasses, including God! they died spiritually when they ate of the fruit! satan is definitely still deceiving today. cant really understand not believing the existence of the devil since i always have (when my sis and i were lil kids, she told me never to wear a necklace or anything around my neck wen i slept or satan would “strangle you in the night”. i believed it for years!)

I know the Screwtape Letters is a good book, i know many who have read it, but its not for everyone. maybe those who dont believe in his existance. I had the book and was reading it years ago and it was messing with my mind. i started thinking about satan, noticing the thoughts he put in my mind and it kinda overrode my listening to the voice of God. the book started really disturbing me, i had to get rid of it. I know the enemy exists, but DONT give him too much attention. we are NOT to battle him, that is God's job! there was a time my dad was studying demonology (my dad is a believer and took part in exorcisms) and was bringing home study tapes and listening to them...i didnt know it, i was young, but my mom told me later. well, at that time weird stuff was happening in our house. my sisters n i heard things, saw things, i wont freak anyone out, keep the FOCUS ON CHRIST! know there is a predator, but don’t dwell on it.

Gen 4:6 stood out "...sin is crouching at your door..." There are often times when the spirit will alert us that sin is at the door. We can chose to yield or obey God. I don’t really understand where all these other ppl came from. Like when Cain was scared he himself would be murdered by others…where did these others come from.? It goes on to say that Eve had Seth to kinda take Abel’s place. So did Eve populate the earth by herself? (I mean with adam’s help). Hmm. Anyone know? My study bible just says the earth was highly populated by that time. I’ll have to pull out the ol’ Dr McGee 10 year bible with commentary.

I always liked John the Baptist too, very cool guy. he loved the Lord, was bold, passionate, took care of business, takes no credit, gives Jesus all the glory.
I love Psalm and proverbs too, but I’ll meditate on those alone, b4 this gets too long. But I love how God is our protector, in this life and more so eternally. no matter wat happens in this life, God does allow bad to happen, but i can be 100% certain i am safe eternally c'bos i belong to the King of Kings! wow...truely amazing!

Re Anka's comment on my phrase "one of God's attempt at salvation":

I am here paraphrasing and compressing my understand of explanations in Eugene Peterson's book "Christ Plays in Ten Thousand Places" in the chapter on "Christ Plays in History". It's not that God tried and failed, it is rather God tried and we failed.

Peterson writes about salvation being the main business of history. He shows the patterns of God's offers (may be a better word that "attempts") of salvation. The classic example is the rescue of the Israelites from slavery in Egypt. There was also the flood where Noah survived, the giving of the Law, the return from exile in Babylon, the Prophets and, of course, ultimately the crucifixtion and resurrection of Jesus.

So from Peterson I get this picture of God repeatedly finding ways to offer recovery from The Fall. best is just to read the book. See LibraryThing for more details at
http://www.librarything.com/catalog.php?work=17090

God wants us to be honest with him all of the time. In Genesis 3 and 4, God asked the same question twice to two different people. Once Adam and Eve and another time to Cain. He asked Adam and Eve, why he couldn't find them when he was calling them. And he asked Cain where his brother was. God knew the answers to those questions even before he ever asked them. God doesn't just want to know what we do, he wants us to confess our actions.

2. I don't find it painfull to read about the fall because it was part of God's plan, I would have done the same thing in that same place.
3.Satan talked the perfect woman, in a perfect place, with a perfect husband into sinning deception is Satan's biggest weapon. How many of us know that we are "Fearfully and Wonderfully made" but the minute someone else we think is better looking is the minute that we clam up and start judgeing our selves.
4. We can do a lot of things one is fill our minds up with the truth, pray and not let world tell us what we should be. Let the one that created us tell us what we should be.

The verse that stood out to me today was Genesis 4:7 If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must master it."

I have read this verse so many times since I became a follower of Jesus and it has never hit me the way it did today. The entire message of chapter 4 was like a brick hittiing me on the head. I always wondered why God didn't like Cain's offering but today it hit me that Cain did not give God his best. Alot of times I don't give God my best in many areas of my life. At times I am a slave to mediocrity, and God needs my best... not my average. Then, Like Cain, I get angry with God when something bad happens and I wonder why. God says well....hey if you do what your supposed to do then I will accept what you give to me, but if what you give me is just average then sin will start to creep into your life. We have to master the resistence of sin, and we do so by giving our best to God.

I also love reading the fall of man and the love the part in quote in the blog that says"The devils greatest trick is to make you think that he does not exist". One of my family members is heavily involved in the New Age Religion and she calls herself a polygamorous Christian, she does not believe in sin or hell or the devil, but she does claim to follow Christ. When I was reading the Blog I felt compelled to Pray for her. Would you pray for my sister also?

I am so thankful for this opportunity to fellowship with other believers. God is good!

Genesis 4:7 stood out for me..."If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door, it desires to have you but you must master it." (New International Version) - Kind of like what Jenny was saying - we have a choice to make at pretty much every step in our lives. We can either obey God or "obey" ourselves. (I hope it's okay to share this.....)
One of the first things I had to do right after I was saved was make a choice to obey God in a HUGE way! I won't get into all the details, but my husband and I were separated at the time (almost 2 years) and I was "with" someone else (ok...I'll call it what it was...an affair...ie. SIN!). God said repent and go back to your husband! Unlike Joseph...I didn't respond very quickly to His call, but eventually I did choose God over my own desires and my husband and I were reunited...it's been 5 years since that time and God has blessed us abundantly!! Gos is so good!!!

Sinning, I believe for the most part, is a choice...and another of my favorite verses is 1 Cor 10:13 - No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful, He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, He will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it. - It goes back to Genesis 4:7...sin is always going to be around you...Satan will always be tempting you in some way, that's his job! But you have a choice and God will always make a way for you to get out if it...or "master" it like it says in Genesis. Which is why I believe being in God's word every day is so important...so we can hear from God and know when He is telling us to run the other way!!!

Psalm 2:11 is great too..."serve the Lord with fear and rejoice with trembling"...it's a reverential (sp?) fear that we need to have! God is good and faithful - we should be in awe of Him and what he does for us. We should serve Him with a glad heart...because He is God...not to see what we can get out of it.

Ok, I've rambled enough and I must get to work! Blessings to everyone... :0)

I believe that the devil exists in the world.

I actually have the same picture in a church bulletin. :) with the cat and the dogs.

Too bad everyone can't be like John the baptist and just live life like its suppose to be. :)
It isn't painful to hear about the fall, just kind of sad. That we can't live in a perfect world. Although it would of been nice to run around with no clothes on and not have to worry about the worries of life..not to cry..have to lie in the Garden of Eden..how awesome would that be??
Yes, Satan decieves people today and I sent you a msg about that :)
Our remedy from Satan is to have the bible at hand and have Jesus there to protect us every step of the way as well as praying.
Jesus saved us from some of the fall when he died on the cross for our sins..but when we are saved we save our selves from the rest of the way :)

God knows and sees all. We cant hide from God. It is reassuring that God is able to do this.

“Sin wants to destroy you, but don't let it!” I have been struggling lately with the Devil. The Devil has been trying his hardest to get me to listen to the lies he wants to feed me
its so reassuring that God wants me to be strong and not let the Devil have a chance.

Just as Psalms 2:12 tells us “He blesses and protects everyone who runs to him.” I have found this to be true in relation to how I am dealing with those relentless lies from the Devil.
If Satan was able to deceive Adam & Eve back then, do you think he still deceives people today?
Without a doubt its what Im going through at the moment

What is our remedy from the lies and deception Satan might throw our way?
Turn back to God and let our faith rest in Him

What is your reaction to reading about The Fall in Genesis today?

I think of the story of Corrie ten Boom when, at about the age of 8, she was going to Copenhagen with her father and asked him about sex; some of her peers had caused her to be curious. When they arrived at Copenhagen, her father asked her to carry the heavy suitcase with the watchpieces to the station from the train. When she tried to lift the bag she complained that it was too heavy for her; he responded that so was the question she was asking about sex.

Is it painful to read about The Fall after reading about The Creation yesterday?

Oh yes. I believe that is why God tried to protect Adam and Eve from knowledge from the tree of good and evil because I believe He wanted to keep them pure and innocent.

If Satan was able to deceive Adam & Eve back then, do you think he still deceives people today?

Yes, of course. But the more we read the Word of God and the more our minds are renewed and washed through it, I believe the less advantage he has in deceiving us.

What is our remedy from the lies and deception Satan might throw our way?

Memorizing scripture, meditating on the Word of God, getting to know His character and attributes and wanting to please Him and be more like Him.

Do you believe reading and studying God's Word on a daily basis might be one remedy?

Absolutely! I believe in the transforming power of the Word of God; it is the fear--reverence for the Lord -- that is the BEGINNING of knowledge! It changes our worldview to be conformed to Him.

What are some other remedies? (prayer, going to church, being in a small community group with others, etc.?)

All of the above, and I believe teaching is a wonderful way to avoid being deceived. Teaching requires us to KNOW our subject because we will be tested by our students, so we must have a pretty thorough understanding in order to teach.

Do you believe Jesus has saved us from The Fall?

Yes. I believe He was spoken of when scripture talks in Genesis 3:15 of the "seed" of a woman. How many women have "seed?" It is men who have seed, but to me God prophesied the virgin birth that was to come in this verse.

I live in Australia which means that I'm ahead in the reading assignment and it is good to recap reading the comments.

My comments on the second creation story is discernment of God giving us CHOICE.
Having introduced the concept of DICHOTOMY it seems logical to give choice to mankind even at the risk of our rejection of God as the determinant of right from wrong.

In the Fall we would discover our common human condition of choices, self sufficiency, self-centeredness but also a call that will take us beyond ourselves

Do I believe Satan excist and still deceives people? Yes, I absolutely believe that! Satan still tries, he hates it when people get saved by Jesus. And he'll try to change your mind. My remedy is indeed going to church, going an hour early to be at the prayer meeting, share my experiences with other people. Praying and reading the Bible, Gods word, helps me when I'm being attacked by Satan. My Pastors wife became my friend and she's also able to get me through hard times. She's such a loving and wise person, I always learn a lot from her. She's wonderful and whenever I talked to her, I feel so strong again, just what I need.

The Psalms stood out for me today "Serve the LORD with reverent fear, and rejoice with trembling. Submit to God's royal son, or he will become angry, and you will be destroyed in the midst of your pursuits--for his anger can flare up in an instant. But what joy for all who find protection in him!". I loved reading this! I truly believe that Jesus saved us from the fall. It will not be easy and we all know it's not easy. We'll fall down many times, but He always gives me the strength to hold on. No matter how tough it may get. When I'm going through hard times I listen to "God of Wonders" by Rebecca St James (or is it Natalie Grant?), that song lifts me up and makes me so strong and ... no mountain is too high!!!!

I do believe in the exsistance of the devil. My husband had a conversation the other day with one of his friends where they denied that satan exsisted. My husband was shocked and I reacted the same when he told me about it.
"This Present Darkness" is a great book demonstrating the battle of demons and angels. Where the angels get their power and strength from prayer. It's a great book and I recommend it.

What is your reaction to reading about The Fall in Genesis today? Adam's dual denial of responsibility--"but it was the woman you gave me who brought me the fruit, and I ate it." I had not noticed before that Adam blames both Eve ("the woman") and God for his sin of eating the "fruit" (which, incidentally, was not necessarily an apple.)

Is it painful to read about The Fall after reading about The Creation yesterday? The fact is, I have never lived in a perfect world. Also, I have already learned about the Fall and am living in the world resultant. Had I lived in perfect Eden and been in Adam's position--the first to sin--I would probably feel awful. I also notice that Adam is not directly told here that God will curse future generations because of his sin.

Also, I read: "16Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.

17And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life;"

If Satan was able to deceive Adam & Eve back then, do you think he still deceives people today? Yes.

What is our remedy from the lies and deception Satan might throw our way? Each person must accept Jesus Christ as their Savior and meditate upon God's Words in the Bible. Also, we need to fellowship with other believers--forming actual relationships with them and holding one another accountable in our behaviors and actions--not judging one another's wrongs, but gently restoring one another to righteous living.

Do you believe reading and studying God's Word on a daily basis might be one remedy? Yes. What are some other remedies? prayer, going to church, being in a small community group with others, etc.

Do you believe Jesus has saved us from The Fall? We still fall. Jesus offers us all a way out of darkness and into eternal life. Jesus saves us after we fall, once we acknowledge that we are "fallen", sinful beings.

Matthew 2:13-3:6

Herod was furious when he realized that the wise men had outwitted him. He sent soldiers to kill all the boys in and around Bethlehem who were two years old and under, based on the wise men's report of the star's first appearance.
(Matthew 2:16 NLT)


Herod was wrong. It wasn’t the wise men who had “outwitted” him, it was God. This is the same theme that runs through today’s in today’s Old Testament reading, blaming others when the culprit is ourselves. Adam blamed God by way of Eve, Eve blamed the serpent, and Cain blamed Abel for his unacceptable sacrifice. As it was then so it is today, we fail to take responsibility for our own actions. God is looking for people to take responsibility for what they have done. I believe salvation is beyond our grasp until we recognize that the fault, the sin our sin, lies within us and not someone else. We cannot be healed or washed of our “stuff” until we realize that the person in the mirror is the root of our sin, not our spouses, not our co-workers, and not that “fine” looking neighbor across the street, hall or the community.

May we search our hearts and take inventory of our actions and realize the problem is us, then we can go to Christ for cleansing and restoration.

Grace and peace

I think the fall brings out the humanness of us. It shows that we are fallable and can be molded by evil.
And it's something I loath in the world today. It is one reason why everything is so materialistic and why I reeeeally hope we can escape it. I see so much sin just in anything to the point where I think it would corrupt just about anyone (undoubtedly including myself).
I truly mean there is no remedy but GOD himself. Everything about GOD is sinless and thats the substance we should take shelter in. That is our only peace. From the Bible from the church, even from praying with friends from other denominations those our sanctuaries.
Jesus is our savior forever. No doubt to that!!! *cheers*

Ponderings....
Gen 3;10
I find it absolutely amazing the Adam heard God walking. To me that speaks volumes. I want to know God in such a way where I know His walk and talk without a 2nd thought.
Gen 3;14 -
It seems that the serpent during that time walked upright because God cursed him to crawl on his belly and eat the dust all the days of his life. He would not have done that if he was already crawling on his belly. Very interesting. I also don't believe Satan has completed his job. He is alive and still trying to deceive and get as many of us on his side as possible. Which is why we MUST stay in fellowship with one another, swim in the word daily and pray to God for understanding and wisdom.
Two verses stand out to me today:
First John had no ill feelings or at least the text does not make mention of it if he did. He is ok with being second, he was not puffed up nor did he have a problem knowing he was making the way for our Lord.

Proverb 1;7 this is the first time I read this verse and understood FEAR to mean hold in awe and reverence. I love how Solomon teaches us believing in God is the way to understand Him. I thought fear meant how we define FEAR.

This is my first year reading the bible with this community and so far I am having a good time. I have invited 4 of my friends.

Outstanding to me was the flaming sword in Genesis 3:24
What is a flaming sword?

Happy New Year to All!

I did finish the whole Bible lately.

It is encouraging to meet you all and walk with you all in 2008 journey through the Bible.

May God bless you all.

Grace, Hope and Love

Hi! I'm late to roll-call, but wanted to introduce myself to the gang.

1. Have you read the entire Bible before?
Yes, a long time ago. I wanted to do it again and started out well with this blog last year, but then entered into an extremely difficult pregnancy. Because of illness, I was barely able to keep up with my kindergartener, much less anything else. So I'm renewing and redoubling my efforts this year!

2. What are you looking forward to about reading the entire Bible in 2008?
I cannot wait to revisit some of my favorite old stories from childhood, like Daniel in the lion's den, Jonah and the whale, etc. I plan to walk my child through these as we proceed.

3. What's your favorite book or verse in the Bible?
Proverbs is awsome!

4. What's a fun or interesting fact about yourself?
I'm a work-from-home mommy. Yes, it's a real job that I do from home. And somehow, I manage to balance things ... most of the time. :)

Reading Matt2:13 - 21 made me to realise that we need to hear from God per second and obey his words. We live not only by the words he spoke but the words he is speaking and Joseph realised this. Even though the angle told him to go back and later told him to go to Galilee, he didnt argue but obeyed.
Did you all notice that both in the Old and new testament they were always communicating with God. Men, if we could always hear his voice and commune with him like what we read, am sure none of us can imagine the work God would wor through us. Let us yearn for him that he might reveal himself to us.
Been trying to read the whole bible for a long time but havent, found this site towards the end of last year and am sure gonna ride with you all to do just that.
Happy new year and welcome into a limitless year as u rely on the God who has no limits.

I plan to read The Screwtape Letters this year

and its very easy to blame someone else when we sin we have been dealing with this with our oldest son this past year
we have come to learn that one shouldnt ask why but go on to how to solve the sin

I read somewhere that even adults wont incriminate themselves

sin is all easy to fall into it if we have to be on guard all the time
Jesus can protect and help us deal with turning our backs on sin

Recently we have talking about Joesph in church we reflected on the fact that
Joesph has wonderful obedience he didnt know how long he would have to be away from home but he went anyway. With just the clothes on his back.
And he never grumbled once
He is a man I admire
I dont feel he gets enough credit for his part in Jesus' early life either

Thank you...
we will be reading daily.
May our Lord be glorified.
Deb and Ray

STATEMENT: "... I hesitated to post up this picture below - I really don't like it at all - but I think it's appropriate for this conversation. It reminded me of the temptation of our modern day addictions - like pornography or drugs etc. - the apple perhaps looks tasty at first glance, but you can't bite the apple without getting bit by the snake and getting poisoned..."

Actually I do like the pic of the apple in hand and the garden snake wrapped around the wrist. The photographer in my opinion was being very creative. Being that photography is also a hobby of mine I wish I had thought of it myself. I also like the analogy you made with the serpents' temptation of Eve and the temptations of drugs, pornography, etc. which are likewise satanic deception and to which many people yield to today. All the lusts of the flesh are enticing and sin feels good at first but there are consequences for yielding as we have seen for Adam and Eve and their descendants down through time to our generation. Satan attempts to appeal to our flesh sensually, visually and also to our own egos. We see in Genesis 3:5-6 that Satan attacked Adam and Eve on all three fronts and He will also approach us in the same way. However, because of the Word of God we are not ignorant of his devices and we are better equipped to resist the Devil than Adam and Eve was.

" For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever. "

- 1 John 2:16-17 ( kjv )


QUESTIONS: "... do you believe in the existence of the devil? Do you believe in the existence of evil? Of temptation? Of sin?..."

Absolutely. These are observable truths we can see in the world everyday. Anyone who denies it is deceiving themselves and being deceived. The Judeo-Christian worldview which is rooted in the Bible has the best explanation for good and evil that I have ever heard which is one reason why I am a believer. No other world religion or any other philosophy of man can offer a more reasonable explanation that makes any sense of it all. Most don't even try. I was also given a supernatural experience once. Long before I became a Christian a couple of friends and I called upon the name of Satan in a seance type of setting and there was a manifestation. It was either the presence of Satan or God warning us to cease what we were doing. I believe now that it was only by the grace of God that we did not become demon possessed. From that day forward I knew for a fact that the Devil was for real.

I have read C.S. Lewis' ' The Screwtape Letters.' Although I didn't agree with some of what is presented theologically I still found it to be fascinating reading concerning the devices of Satan and his dark angels in deceiving the world. As C.S. Lewis himself said we need no other proof of evil than for each of us to examine our own hearts. Here below is another quote by C.S. Lewis from that book which I think is also relevant to this topic:

" Some have paid me an undeserved compliment by supposing that my Letters were the ripe fruit of many years' study in moral and ascetic theology. They forgot that there is an equally reliable, though less creditable, way of learning how temptation works. "My heart"-I need no other's-"showeth me the wickedness of the ungodly.

-C.S. Lewis

Source: ' The Screwtape Letters ', by C.S. Lewis,1961, Simon & Schuster (distributed by Broadman & Holman Publishers: Nashville, Tennessee), p.9

Genesis 3:4 “You won’t die!” the serpent replied to the woman. 5 “God knows that your eyes will be opened as soon as you eat it, and you will be like God, knowing both good and evil.” *** The devil is horrible! He truly thinks he's better than God. He's a fallen archangel, he already lost! It's sad, but yes, I do think satan still deceives people today. I read the book "He came to set the captives free" by Rebecca Brown, it's so scary to read how satan has his followers and what a scary organisation this is! We defenitly have to stay in the light! Yes, reading and studying God's Word is one remedy, together with prayers, attending church, being in a community and most of all: to have a good relationship with God. Recognize Him when He speaks to you. Know Him! Let yourself be guided by the Holy Spirit! To know His Word is knowing Him! Titus 2:11-13 "For the grace of God has been revealed, bringing salvation to all people. 12 And we are instructed to turn from godless living and sinful pleasures. We should live in this evil world with wisdom, righteousness, and devotion to God, 13 while we look forward with hope to that wonderful day when the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, will be revealed".

I just started this journey today, 1/2/08. I received a call a few minutes ago that my dad passed away...we don't have any evidence that he ever became a Christian...it's very hard, but we are choosing to believe that God spoke to him in those last moments, and that he listened and received.

http://jennytork.deviantart.com/art/Eden-Storm-36099237

This is a drawing I did about Eden. At the bottom of the picture I used a stormcloud to represent sin coming into the world.

Enola

I’m new at this so there is no Biblical basis for my comments. I’m here to learn.

Genesis 3:22
22Then the LORD God said, "Behold, the man has become like one of (X)Us, knowing good and evil; and now, he might stretch out his hand, and take also from (Y)the tree of life, and eat, and live forever"—

We see in 3:22 another reference to the trinity. It took me a while to realize the word Us meant the trinity. I was at first thinking that it was God speaking as royalty would speak in the plural, but after reading the verse several times it came to me that Us really means the trinity. Isn’t it wonderful that twice within the first three chapters of the first book of the Bible that God has already made reference to the trinity?

From Mikes narrative:
“He will crush your head, and you will strike his heel." This last sentence refers to Jesus ultimately defeating the devil through his life, death on the cross, and resurrection!””

I don't make the connection here. Can someone explain this to me?

Why didn't God look with favor on Cain's offering?
I was taught that Cain's offering was not from the first of the harvest which is the best of the crop and that he kept the best for himself and gave God the seconds, whereas Able gave God an unblemished, perfect animal, the first from the flock. This made Able’s sacrifice more pleasing to God. We should always give God our best, then what’s left for us will be blessed by God.

You will be accepted if you respond in the right way. But if you refuse to respond correctly, then watch out! Sin is waiting to attack and destroy you, and you must subdue it.
I’ve always interpreted this to mean that if Cain would have given from his best produce, he would be responding in the right way; just like we should give to the God first and what is left He will bless and multiply.

Why is it that most people are not experiencing the abundant life?
Because... I think they are either afraid to or simply refuse to turn over their life to Jesus and put their faith in His plan for our life.

Response to Kristy:
I still have a-bit of a problem with free will. I was taught by the nuns in CCD class that God knows all, past, present and future. That means that He must know exactly what we are going to do before we do it. In my mind this crushes free will. If God knows all, then how can he not know exactly what we will do? I think that our free will is an allusion that God uses in an attempt to bring us closer to Him. When we make bad choices, even though He knew in advance that we would make that choice, He uses that to bring us to Him. It’s all in his plan to bring us back to Himself.

Response to John: (Satan is a “shining being”)
I also read someplace that Lucifer (Satan), whatever you want to call him was the first angel that God created. This would make him a shining being. I read that Satan wanted to be equal to God. In his attempt to become equal with God, God threw him out of heaven and down to the Earth and now Satan and his angels are constantly at war against God for being cast out of heaven. I see the fall of Adam and Eve as the second fall. The first fall was that of Satan wanting to be like God and God casting him out of heaven just like Adam and Eve were cast out of the garden (heaven on Earth). It shows how Satan’s story never changes. Eat of this and you will be like God. Just like he wants to be God’s equal and can’t, he was than, and is today, still trying to be equal and to tempt us to believe that we too can be like God. Pray that you don’t believe the lie.

Comments from You and Questions of the Day:

What is your reaction to reading about The Fall in Genesis today?

I’ve always wondered why God created man with the ability to do evil. God said after the creation that it is Good, yet man is capable of doing evil. This always puzzles me.

Is it painful to read about The Fall after reading about The Creation yesterday?

It is painful only in the sense that man is still falling today and that we haven’t learned anything.

If Satan was able to deceive Adam & Eve back then, do you think he still deceives people today?

Not only do I think he still deceives people today, I know he is deceiving people today. Just look around you, read the newspaper, watch the TV news or for that much watch TV or movies. I think one can see Satan working overtime in our society and too many people are falling for his lies hand over fist.

What is our remedy from the lies and deception Satan might throw our way?

We must keep up our defenses and those defenses are the word of God. We must keep our mind on God and pray without ceasing so that we can ward off Satan’s attacks.

Do you believe reading and studying God's Word on a daily basis might be one remedy?

Absolutely!! Even while reading God’s word Satan tries to attack me. Have you ever read several pages of scripture only to realize that your mind was somewhere else and you can’t remember a thing that you read? Has your mind ever wandered in church while listening to the minister or priest? I know mine does, and I see these events as attacks from Satan in an attempt to sway me away from God’s word. When appropriate, that is when I’m not sitting in the congregation, and I realize that my mind has wondered, I will say out load…get away from me Satan! It works!, at least for me. I can usually focus on my reading after saying that.

What are some other remedies? (prayer, going to church, being in a small community group with others, etc.?)
Praying without ceasing is my best remedy. I came to realize several years ago that I talk to God all day long. I have conversations with Him just as if I was talking to my best friend. But then why should I/we, He is my/our best friend.
Do you believe Jesus has saved us from The Fall?
I do not believe that Jesus saved us from “the fall”. We have all fallen. We have all sinned and fall short. I believe that Jesus picks us up from the fall. It is through Jesus and His death on the cross and resurrection from the dead that we are saved (picked up from the fall). It is so very easy to be saved. Put your faith in Jesus. Turn your life over to Jesus. I find it hard to believe that people will not do this.

Also, what verses or insights stand out to you in today's readings?

I’m still not very good at picking out versus that stand out. I pray that through this blog I can achieve a better and fuller understanding of every verse in the Bible. I know that it is only my second day in this blog, but so far it’s working! Thanks be to God!

Yours in Christ.
Skip

Hi Mike,
I know you said you didn't like the pic of the snake and apple, but that is one of the best pics yet. I love how you incorporate art into your commentary. Although, I hate snakes, I thought this pic was visually thought provoking.

STATEMENT: " In verses 12 and 13 we see Adam and Eve passing the buck on why they sinned. ...At first glance you might think that Adam is just blaming Eve in this verse, but note that he is also blaming God! "the woman YOU gave me..." Adam was blaming God and Eve - anybody but himself. How often do we do this in our lives? Blame others for our mistakes?..."

We all have a tendency to blame others for things that go wrong. I admit that I have on occasion been guilty of this. However, if we are honest with ourselves and with God we will realize that we have no one to blame but ourselves for the bad choices that we make in life.

Wicked men are still blaming God for their own evil ways today. I have encountered many atheists and skeptics who blame God for all of the evil in the world even though in the same breath they claim not to believe in His existence. In their minds all of the evil in the world justifies their unbelief but then they blaspheme God, call Him a "monster " and say that even if there was a God they would want nothing to do with Him. However, all of the evil and suffering in the world today can be traced back to the Garden of Eden when sin first entered into the world through Adam and Eve's act of disobedience. This present evil world in which we live today are the consequences of that. God did not create the world to be this way. The depths of the depravity of mankind has made it so.

Many also have the false notion that Satan caused them to sin as if that somehow relieves them of any personal responsibility for the wrong that they have done. However, no one on the Day of Judgment will stand before God and be able to say that " The Devil made me do it." No, Satan can only deceive and influence the thoughts of someone. The Devil can't make anyone do anything unless He totally possesses the body of that individual but even in such extreme cases it is because that person previously at some point in their lives had made a choice to open their minds up to demonic influences. Satan's control of our lives is determined by how much control we ourselves are willing to give to him by following him in his rebellion against God.

Man has a God-given free will to make his own choices. Unfortunately Adam and Eve made the choice to disobey God's commandment. When they ate of the forbidden fruit from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil then they became acutely aware of the existence of good and evil and there were still yet more choices to be made by them and with each generation of their descendants. So then each man and woman will be held accountable to God for his/her own choices.

The most important choice that each one of us will ever be faced with is whether to believe or not to believe on the Name of Jesus Christ. To make the wrong choice in this matter has an eternal consequence which is damnation. God sent His only begotten Son into the world to redeem fallen humanity, to remove the curse on creation and to restore paradise lost because of Adam and Eve's sin. Only in Christ Jesus can we be found to be blameless in the sight of God.

" And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved BLAMELESS unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it."

- 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24 ( kjv )

QUESTION: "...Many of you probably asked yourselves, why didn't God look with favor on Cain's offering?..."

My view is that Cain's offering was rejected because he did not bring the sacrifice that God from the beginning has always required for the remission of sins which was a blood sacrifice. His brother Abel did bring the acceptable sacrifice by bringing a firstling from his flock of sheep. Cain's sacrifice is symbolic of offering to God good works for salvation which can save no one while Abel's offering was a foreshadow of the shedding of blood for the forgiveness of sins which ultimately was fulfilled in Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God.

" By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, by which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts: and by it he being dead yet speaketh. "

- Hebrews 11:4 ( kjv )


" And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than that of Abel. "

- Hebrews 12:24 ( kjv )

QUESTION: "...Many of you probably asked yourselves, why didn't God look with favor on Cain's offering?..."

My view is that Cain's offering was rejected because he did not bring the sacrifice that God from the beginning has always required for the remission of sins which was a blood sacrifice. His brother Abel did bring the acceptable sacrifice by bringing a firstling from his flock of sheep. Cain's sacrifice is symbolic of offering to God good works for salvation which can save no one while Abel's offering was a foreshadow of the shedding of blood for the forgiveness of sins which ultimately was fulfilled in Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God.

" By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, by which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts: and by it he being dead yet speaketh. "

- Hebrews 11:4 ( kjv )


" And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than that of Abel. "

- Hebrews 12:24 ( kjv )

PSALMS 2:1-12

STATEMENT: "... Psalm 2 today is a prophetic and Messianic Psalm! This Psalm is frequently quoted in the New Testament in reference to Jesus as God's Anointed and the great son of King David..."

The Book of Psalms is full of messianic prophecies of the coming of Yeshua Ha Moshiach ( Jesus the Messiah ). Yeshua Himself had said to His disciples:

"...These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, AND IN THE PSALMS, concerning me. "

- Luke 24:44 ( kjv )

Psalm 2:1-2 was quoted by Peter and John in their prayer of praise and thanksgiving to God ( Acts 4:25-26 ) after their trial before the Sanhedrin at Jerusalem and their release from prison. In that same prayer they acknowledged Jesus as the annointed one and the fulfillment of that prophecy. Of course this prophecy is still being fulfilled today in every nation where Christians are undergoing persecution.

" For of a truth against thy holy child Jesus, whom thou hast anointed, both Herod, and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles, and the people of Israel, were gathered together, For to do whatsoever thy hand and thy counsel determined before to be done. And now, Lord, behold their threatenings: and grant unto thy servants, that with all boldness they may speak thy word, "

- Acts 4:27-29


PROVERBS 1:7-9

QUESTIONS: "...What does this proverb say to you? Do you believe we should fear God? Bible commentaries define this fear of God as "a loving reverence for God that includes submission to his Lordship and to the commands of his words." Do you believe that fear of God is the beginning of knowledge in our lives? Will you embrace wisdom and discipline in your life? Will you make wisdom and discipline top priorities in your life in this new year of 2008?..."

I believe that everyone ought to have a healthy fear of God because He is a God that can be provoked to anger and wrath. He will punish sin. Such knowledge and wisdom will restrain people from doing evil that they would otherwise do if there were no fear of God before their eyes. Unfortunately that is the spiritual condition of a lot of people though. As Christians we are His children and God will chasten His children when we sin though we are no longer under condemnation or His wrath. God deals with us differently then they of the world. We fear our earthly fathers when they discipline us for wrong doing. How much more should we reverance our Heavenly Father! Verse 8 exhorts us to listen to our parents and their instruction which is especially applicable if they are God-fearing parents who teach us the ways of the Lord.

" If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons. Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them REVERENCE: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live? For they verily for a few days chastened us after their own pleasure; but he for our profit, that we might be partakers of his holiness. Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby. "

- Hebrews 12:7-11 ( kjv )

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