I decided at the last minute to read my Bible through this year. I attempted to do this last year but only made it about half way. However, this time I’ve found a Bible reading schedule that I think will work better for me. This week I have been reading in my favorite Old Testament book, the book of Genesis. I enjoy Genesis because it is filled with colorful characters, and there are so many lessons you could learn in looking at their lives. The following are just some things I’ve thought about as I did my reading.
How Did They Do It?
Gen 3:7 And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.
Have you ever wondered just how Adam and Eve were able to sew fig leaves together? Did they somehow poke vines through the leaves to get them to stay together? Was there a way that they could somehow sharpen a branch or stick to make some kind of primitive needle? I guess I will never know this side of Heaven.
Tragedy Of Self Will
Genesis 4:16 And Cain went out from the presence of the LORD, and dwelt in the land of Nod, on the east of Eden.
This is probably one of the saddest verses in the Bible. Can you imagine how heartbroken Adam and Eve must have been? Their first born son is a murderer, and their second born son is the victim. From this verse and some others that are in the New Testament, it appears that Cain never found a place of repentance. He walked away from the presence of God. While thinking about this, I wrote the following.
What high hopes the young
couple harbored for their first born
son as they gaze in wonder at the
perfectly formed little fingers and toes
of their slumbering, tiny lad. It was impossible
to know the jealousy that would
encircle his heart.
“God is not pleased
with my offering. His sacrifice is better
Feelings of intense hatred
burst from within and manifest themselves
as the world’s first murder. A young brother
lays cold and lifeless as a torrent of tears
flow from a broken mother and father.
Without remorse, the young man stands
at the precipice of decision, and because of this,
some of the saddest words in history are penned.
And Cain went out from the presence of the Lord.
God Uses Imperfect People
Gen 12:11 And it came to pass, when he was come near to enter into Egypt, that he said unto Sarai his wife, Behold now, I know that thou art a fair woman to look upon:
Gen 12:12 Therefore it shall come to pass, when the Egyptians shall see thee, that they shall say, This is his wife: and they will kill me, but they will save thee alive.
Gen 12:13 Say, I pray thee, thou art my sister: that it may be well with me for thy sake; and my soul shall live because of thee.
Gen 12:14 And it came to pass, that, when Abram was come into Egypt, the Egyptians beheld the woman that she was very fair.
Gen 12:15 The princes also of Pharaoh saw her, and commended her before Pharaoh: and the woman was taken into Pharaoh’s house.
Gen 12:16 And he entreated Abram well for her sake: and he had sheep, and oxen, and he asses, and menservants, and maidservants, and she asses, and camels.
Gen 12:17 And the LORD plagued Pharaoh and his house with great plagues because of Sarai Abram’s wife.
Gen 12:18 And Pharaoh called Abram, and said, What is this that thou hast done unto me? why didst thou not tell me that she was thy wife?
Gen 12:19 Why saidst thou, She is my sister? so I might have taken her to me to wife: now therefore behold thy wife, take her, and go thy way.
Gen 12:20 And Pharaoh commanded his men concerning him: and they sent him away, and his wife, and all that he had.
The Bible paints people as they are. Here, Abraham tells a lie. I used to think at one time that you had to be absolutely flawless to be used by God, but there were others in the Bible who did things we would consider worse than lying, and God was still able to use them. I don’t believe that God condones sinning, but neither is He one that will cast us off if we mess up. I don’t believe God would have made Abraham the Father of the faithful if he had continued in a pattern of lying, just as I don’t believe that God would have used Moses if he continued to murder Egyptians. God gives us space to repent, and to me, that is a great comfort.
What Was He Thinking?
Gen 19:4 But before they lay down, the men of the city, even the men of Sodom, compassed the house round, both old and young, all the people from every quarter:
Gen 19:5 And they called unto Lot, and said unto him, Where are the men which came in to thee this night? bring them out unto us, that we may know them.
Gen 19:6 And Lot went out at the door unto them, and shut the door after him,
Gen 19:7 And said, I pray you, brethren, do not so wickedly.
Gen 19:8 Behold now, I have two daughters which have not known man; let me, I pray you, bring them out unto you, and do ye to them as is good in your eyes: only unto these men do nothing; for therefore came they under the shadow of my roof.
This passage of Scripture really baffles me. How could Lot offer his two virgin daughters to the men of Sodom? In his mind, was this the lesser of two evils? Was he afraid of these men and wanting to appease them? We know he was not a partaker in the sin for which this city was known, but I think being in this type of environment for so long must have muddled his thinking. Enough said for now.