Friday, January 6, 2017

Friday, January 6th: Genesis 16-17; Matthew 5:27-48 ~ Tammy

Today's passage from the Bible In a Year Reading Plan is Genesis 16-17; Matthew 5:27-48

In our Genesis passage we are reminded that sin is serious and that it's consequences can be long lasting and affect many more people than just ourselves.

Sarai sinned by not trusting God to fulfill His promise and presuming to know a better way and timing, offering Hagar to Abram as a surrogate in order to force God's hand.

Abram also sinned in this.  He also doubted God's promise, he listened to his wife's ungodly advice because he failed to test it against God's Word, he didn't pray or ask God for wisdom, and obviously, he slept with another woman that was not his wife (or took a second wife - but either way, not God's plan and therefore, sin).

And the consequences were huge!  Hagar was forced into becoming Abram's mistress/concubine/wife.  There was pride, jealousy, misery, and injustice throughout the entire situation between Sarai, Hagar, Abram, Ishmael, and later, Isaac.

Isaac is the ancestral father or the Israelites, and Ishmael is the ancestral father to all Arabic people - two nations that are at war with each other from that point on until today.  Talk about far reaching consequences!!

Forgiveness does not cancel out consequences, and we would be well served to remember that before giving in to the temptations we face today.

Our NT passage discusses a few of those temptations/sins - lust, divorce, oaths, and revenge.  But the portion that stood out to me is that believers are to love their enemies.  Perhaps there is nothing that differentiates unbelievers from believers as much as this!  Obviously, this is something that we can only do through the power of Christ that lives within us.  Who do you need to love today?

Tomorrow's Bible In a Year PassageGenesis 18-19; Matthew 6:1-18


Jody said...

I had the same thought about the far reaching consequences of sin!! I appreciate your statement "Forgiveness does not cancel out consequences, and we would be well served to remember that before giving in to the temptations we face today."

The New Testament reading segues beautifully from the OT reading. As I was reading this passage I was reminded of the beatitudes that we read yesterday. What a gracious and loving God to map out the benefits of this hard work of battling sin.

kjad said...

Loving your enemies was a part that stood out for me too. It's hard to do but what the bible says is so true, "And if you greet only your brothers, what are you doing more than the others?" (vs 47) This connects to the reading from yesterday, how are we going to be a light in the world if we don't act differently than non Christians?