January 9

Genesis 20:1-22:24

It’s important to know that a half-truth is a whole lie. It’s hard to fathom the thought that Abraham and Sarah once again lied like this about their relationship. It’s true, Abraham was the half-brother of Sarah (Genesis 20:12) but they were married, they were husband and wife. Hadn’t they learned their lesson? Apparently not. But the LORD showed them grace upon grace, He protected them and the promise He made to them.

Warren Wiersbe, “God spoke to the heathen king but not to His own friend, Abraham! Although God kept the king from sinning, He allowed Abraham to lie! God called Abraham to be a blessing, but now he had become a curse in the land. God was protecting Sarah, Isaac, and His great plan of salvation.”

I love what we read in Genesis 21:2, “…at the set time.”

God is never late, but neither is He ever early, He is always right on time. Abraham was 100, Sarah was 90 (Genesis 17:17) the child of promise was an undeniable miracle.

The time came for Hagar and Ishmael to be cast out (Ishmael is typology of the flesh – Galatians 4:21-30). Earlier in life, Sarah steered her husband Abraham wrong, this time her counsel was correct. Abraham didn’t want to do it, but God confirmed it and he obeyed…for in Isaac his seed would be called (Genesis 21:12).

The truth of God’s perpetual presence in Abraham’s life is a truth about all of God’s people (Matthew 28:20; Hebrews 13:5). Do others notice that about you? May it be evident in us as it was in Abraham, so that even non-believers will take note.

Genesis 21:22 (NKJV) “And it came to pass at that time that Abimelech and Phichol, the commander of his army, spoke to Abraham, saying, ‘God is with you in all that you do.’”

Genesis 22 is an epic chapter. This is the first time the word “love” is found in the Bible (that sounds significant to me). 

God tested Abraham.

Genesis 22:2 (NKJV) “Then He said, ‘Take now your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you.’”

As I try to put myself in Abraham’s sandals, I can’t even begin to wrap my mind around the request to sacrifice my son, especially considering the miraculous birth, and the promise of God. But Abraham did not hesitate to obey. How was he able to do this? We have the explanation in New Testament light.

Hebrews 11:17–19 (NKJV) “By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac, and he who had received the promises offered up his only begotten son, 18 of whom it was said, ‘In Isaac your seed shall be called,’ 19 concluding that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead, from which he also received him in a figurative sense.”

Abraham completely believed God’s promise; Abraham was thoroughly convinced that even if Isaac died, he would be raised from the dead.

Genesis 22 is an amazing picture (typology) of what would actually take place close to 2,000 years later, when God the Father would give His only Son, the Son that He loved, Jesus Christ as the sacrifice for our sins. When Isaac asked his father about the sacrifice, Abraham’s response was literally, “The LORD will provide Himself the Lamb.” 

Another fascinating fact is the location of the sacrifice. One day the Temple would be built at this exact location, on Mount Moriah (2 Chronicles 3:1).

Genesis 22:14 is the origin of another one of God’s Names – Yawheh-Yireh (Jehovah Jireh) = the Lord will provide. May we remember His name and promise to provide!

Abraham passed the test with flying colors. O Lord, may we do the same whenever our love is tested!

Matthew 7:15-29

Beware of false prophets. They look like sheep, but it’s only because we look on the outside, superficially. A closer look reveals the fact that they do not bear the fruit of the Spirit and their message is not actually the Bible. Look closer. Listen more attentively.

Jesus may be addressing the false prophets themselves when He says that simply because a person professes Christ as Lord, is used by God to prophesy, cast out demons, and do MANY miracles in HIs name (Matthew 7:22) it doesn’t mean that person is saved. We truly need to examine our lives no matter what our profession, position, or practice may be  (2 Corinthians 13:5).

We’re all building a home (our lives). Some are building on a good foundation, while others are building on the sand. One day the storms of life will come to all of us – will you stand? It all depends on whether or not you’ve been building on the Rock by hearing AND obeying God’s Word (Matthew 7:24-27).

Psalm 9:1-12

David writes so many songs about the spiritual battles he’s entrenched in. He looks to the Lord to take care of his enemies; may we do the same.

A few verses that stood out to me:

Psalm 9:8a (NKJV) “He shall judge the world in righteousness…”

It may be happening – very soon.

Psalm 9:9 (NKJV) “The LORD also will be a refuge for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble.

May we run to Him, He is our shelter in the storm.

Psalm 9:10 (NKJV) “And those who know Your Name will put their trust in You; for You, LORD, have not forsaken those who seek You.”

It is not just beneficial, it’s beautiful to know the names of God. Study them, seek Him, you’ll be blessed if you do.

Proverbs 2:16-22

Proverbs 2:16–22 (NKJV) “To deliver you from the immoral woman, from the seductress who flatters with her words, 17 Who forsakes the companion of her youth, and forgets the covenant of her God. 18 For her house leads down to death, and her paths to the dead; 19 None who go to her return, nor do they regain the paths of life— 20 So you may walk in the way of goodness, and keep to the paths of righteousness. 21 For the upright will dwell in the land, and the blameless will remain in it; 22 But the wicked will be cut off from the earth, and the unfaithful will be uprooted from it.”

The Hebrew word translated, “deliver” means to take away, to snatch away, it means to rescue from ruin; and that’s what God does for us when He wedges that wisdom into our hearts.

The immoral woman lures with her looks, but she hooks with her words.

Our heart pitter-patters with the way she flatters; and you think, wow, she sees what my wife doesn’t see, finally a woman with proper perspective.

Or the ladies get that attention from some other man – the attention that their husbands neglect to give…he’s a smooth operator.

And first there’s the friendship, then the flattery, then the flirting, and finally the fall.

Be careful, flattery is not communication it’s manipulation; it’s telling us things about ourselves that we enjoy hearing and wish were true.

“O Manny I like your grey hair, your wrinkles show character,” to the brother that’s bald, she comes and says, “I love your receding hair line?” Really, my wife wants me to get a toupe?

As Christians, men who know about the war and get a little wisdom, we begin to realize that the only reason the girl is interested in you is ‘cuz the devil’s interested in you.

We know:

Proverbs 6:26 (NKJV) “For by means of a harlot a man is reduced to a crust of bread; and an adulteress will prey upon his precious life.”

Proverbs 7:26 (NKJV) “For she has cast down many wounded, and all who were slain by her were strong men.”

(Consider Samson)

It’s so sad how we see in v. 17 that not only is this immoral woman a married woman, she used to attend church. It can happen in the church? Yes!

There are many warnings in wisdom v. 18-19.

Proverbs 7:27 (NKJV) “Her house is the way to hell, descending to the chambers of death.”

With so many Christian men and women falling into sexual sin, I cherish the Proverbs and the heavy warnings. Her house leads to death. None who go to her return, nor do they regain the paths of life. (Proverbs 2:18-19).

O Lord, please keep me…us pure!

If you have any questions or comments on today’s reading, or you’d like to share something the Lord showed you, feel free to leave a reply below. I’d love to hear from you as we grow forward in 2021.

Leave a Reply