I'm on a journey to read through the Bible in chronological order. Taking it one day at a time, I will read based on a list I found on the internet and blog about what happened, thoughts provoked, emotions conjured, etc. Enjoy!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Ezekiel 1-8

Ezekiel is visited by God who gives him the charge to become a prophet. He is going to be sent among the Israelites and is warned of their wickedness. A point that God makes, that I love, is that Ezekiel is not being sent to a strange place among strange people. He is being sent to his own people and speaks their language. Ezekiel is being called to witness in his own stomping grounds. I am all about international missions, but I love that God makes a point that we are called to be witnesses in our own neighborhoods as well!

God uses Ezekiel to set up the destruction of Judah. He has him do a bunch of rituals that symbolize their fall (a lot of it is hard to understand...). God then shows him how wicked the people have been.

The book reads like Revelation..there is a lot of symbolism and I'm struggling getting through it... oh well, 8 chapters down, 40 more to go!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Lamentations

1: 6 All the splendor has departed
from Daughter Zion.

Lamentations is not as Debbie Downer as I thought it would be. It is a beautiful book about the sad state of Judah.

9 Her filthiness clung to her skirts;
she did not consider her future.
Her fall was astounding;

Judah acted for years like there was nothing before them. They worshiped false gods, partook in pagan practices and turned away from the God who delivered them time and time again. I live the phrase, "her fall was astounding"... the author of Lamentations is a genius.

The book describes vividly the city falling and the solemn response of the people... they hung their heads and cried in shame. God created His people to be a light, a princess, but they destroyed everything good that He made and forgot every promise they made to God... their fall was astounding.

The next portion I think is a great foreshadowing to Christ' coming:

3:31 For no one is cast off
by the Lord forever.
32 Though he brings grief, he will show compassion,
so great is his unfailing love.

God is a jealous and vengeful God. Yes. But He longs to be good to us and just wants us to be good back. I believe these verses are a great promise that God will raise His people up again...

Jeremiah 41-52

Ok, here we go I'm compressing 4 days worth of reading into one post so bear with me!

The remnant of Judah goes to Jeremiah and asks whats to become of them. They promise to be good and that God can deal with them according to their actions (oh, now they want justice...?). God promises to uphold them if they stay in Babylon. Going to Egypt would be an easier life for them, but God assures them that moving to Egypt means they will instantly die. The people instantly accuse him of lying and go to Egypt (well that didn't take long...). God is engaged and decides to completely wipe the remnant from the face of the earth. He gives a sign to look for to know when the wipe out is coming---the Pharaoh will be given to his enemies just as Zedekiah was when Judah fell the first time.

A list of places, along with Egypt, to be destroyed is given. Places including Damascus, Edom, and Elom...all places that God's people came from and lived when they were brought out of Egypt. Even Babylon is cursed... basically anything Judah touched will be destroyed.

Here is where Jeremiah ends... Chapter 52 tells of the first fall of Jerusalem all over again. I'm not sure what the exact purpose or meaning of this is, but it is a nice poetic ending :)

Habakkuk

Habakkuk is another prophet who is told of the fall of Jersalem (that makes 4 books now!). He prays to God and asks why the wicked are getting away with their evil acts... he cries out for justice. God assures him that the day is coming when they will be given retribution. Habakkuk worships and praises God for his sovereign love and provision.

2 Kings 24-25; 2 Chronicles 36

Zedekiah's disobedience is discussed again (I just read about him in Jeremiah). When he is warned of the impending doom coming upon Judah, he ignores it. When the city is besieged, he is captured--his sons are slaughtered in front of him then his eyes are gouged out. OUCH!

The fall of Jerusalem has now been detailed in 3 different books. It was a BIG deal. God allowed his people to be put to the sword by their enemies. This is what they deserved for their wickedness. This is what we all deserve every single day. But thanks to the promise and sacrifice of the Savior, we get to live by grace... how amazing is that??

Jeremiah 38-40; Psalms 74 & 79

Hello! I've taken quite the hiatus over the holidays but am looking to get back on track! I've taken this "read a Bible in a year" and turned it into "read through the whole Bible when I have time"...not good. I need to work on that... now back to Jeremiah!

Jeremiah is thrown into a cistern and left for dead after he continues to preach of Jerusalem's impending doom from Babylon. He is rescued, but the king still refuses to listen and the city is ultimately destroyed---just like God said. God does leave a remnant of His people and they are instructed to work under the Babylonians.

The amount of crap that Jeremiah puts up with for his beliefs is crazy! I wish I could say I was that strong.

The Psalms correspond as outcries from the people during all of this. They are pleading with God to show mercy and "have regard for His covenant"... outrageous!!! They are asking Him to honor something they broke a million times over. How often do we do this? how often do we ask God to show mercy where mercy should not be shown... keeping in mind that this all happened before Jesus' amazing sacrifice makes me immensely happy for the mercy we now receive!