Israel 2016

Israel 2016
Roman architectural influence in Bet Sean, Israel

Monday, January 5, 2015

Chronological Reading Plan - Day 1, already a challenge appears in the text!

This is what I love about a daily reading plan. It's actually one of the things I love about all Scripture. It never stops teaching you, never stops challenging you. 

I started the Chronological Reading Plan this morning. I've come to look forward to the way it arranges the readings, by the order of events rather than the way the books are ordered in our Bibles. It really puts things in perspective,
particularly the Old Testament. You get to experience the prophets and their writings as they occur through the Sams, Kings and Chronicles. In the New Testament, the Gospels are nicely harmonized and you see, quite clearly, that Acts spans much of the time the New Testament was being written. 

This morning's reading took me to Genesis 1-3. We're all familair with this passage. I use it all the time in counseling and teaching. I can walk through it with relative ease and describe the order of events fairly accurately. As I began, I said a brief prayer, "Lord speak to me through Your word this morning." I meant it but I didn't really expect anything new to rise up out of these three chapters. I was thinking, "OK! I'll get through this quickly and move on to less familair things tomorrow."

Then, Gen 1:14 stopped me in my tracks. Wait a minute! This
is talking about the Sun and the Moon! He created them on the fourth day? Where did the light come from prior? What about the plants created on the third day? Without the "two great lights", how long was the third day? My mind was racing. 

Still, my goal is to read the Bible, following the daily plan. If I stopped to look into this fascinating scenario, I'd never get through the first three chapters this morning. So, I highlighted and moved on.  

When I completed my reading, I went back and started diving into the language and background. There are a lot of theories and plausible explanations but, there's is no clear description of how it all came together. It's quite plain, by the text, that there was light, right from the beginning (Gen 1:3). What role the Sun, Moon and stars play in that light and how that compliments Gen 1:14 is not so clear. 

What we do know is that this was a totally unique time in all of creation. The Hand of God was moving powerfully and creatively in a way that is unparalleled in all of history. The laws of physics and matter are actually being formulated and manipulated by an omnipotent, sovereign God.

It's a mystery. 

But, it's also a prime example of how Scripture, even familair Scripture, can sweetly ambush you and adroitly challenge you. It is, in every way, soothing yet exciting, a comforting jolt of adrenaline, a wonderful example of how the Holy Spirit can still stir our hearts and stretch our minds when we are obedient to His commandments (John 15:10-11, 2 Tim 2:15).

It's not to late to join me!

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