Numbers Overview for tomorrow.

If you totally fell behind and missed Leviticus and feel like you just can’t move forward without it:  Just click here and you will be all caught up.

Let’s look at the timeline.  We begin tomorrow at 1444 BC.  First Census.  As the cloud of smoke and the pillar of fire lift, God will use it to direct His people towards the land that was promised to Abraham.

Pillar of Clouds and Fire, kids - Google Search

The map below shows our starting point.  Mt. Horeb (Mt. Sinai).

Image result for The book of Numbers timeline

The Hebrew title of this book is “Bemidbar”-In the Wilderness.   As noted earlier, when the book was translated (Septuagint) the English title became Numbers because the book begins with a census.  However, if you looked at the timeline you will notice there is a second census.

This book begins right where Leviticus ended, at the base of Mount Sinai.  The Law has been given, the tabernacle has been built, the priests have their jobs, and we are ready to go forward to the land flowing with milk and honey, the land that was promised to them by God himself.  He now wants them (us) to trust in Him.  Why wouldn’t they?  Sounds so easy.  So as we move forward we are going to be so tempted to say:

“What is wrong with these people??”

When you are tempted to say that (like me), that’s where your own application will take place.  What is God saying to you??

Our first 2 chapters will begin with a census and how the tribes will be arranged.  Let’s get a visual:  A football stadium holds about 70,000people.Tennessee Titans' Nissan Stadium goes blue for COVID-19 workers

600,000 fighting men will be recorded,  now add women and children: about 2 million people.  God is organizing 28 stadiums to walk perfectly to the Promised Land. (I struggle walking a class to the cafeteria in a straight line) 😂

They are organizing and will travel about 220 miles to Kadesh Barnea.  The journey would take 11 days.  However, it will take 40 years to get to the destination instead.   YOU know you are going to find personal application in this book.

Some of the chapters might be “listen to it while driving to work” BUT there will be some cool gems to pull out even in the boring chapters.  However, Numbers is also filled with:

  • the Nazarite Vow (which will explain the Samson hair issue later)
  • reread of the tabernacle for those who jumped in and may have missed it
  • lots of meat to eat! (quail)
  • Miriam and Aaron will make you angry
  • a rebellion
  • lots of complaining
  • another rebellion
  • Numbers 20!  The day I threw my Bible away the first time I read it!
  • The bronze snake
  • the talking donkey (just like from Shrek)
  • a plan of seduction
  • a second census
  • Joshua
  • an explanation why 2 1/2 tribes will get land on the east side of the Jordan River one day
  • and where the priests will live in the Promised land

Numbers will take us 2 weeks to read.  If you miss the wrong day you might miss something good so make sure you have 15 minutes carved out to get your reading in.

Leviticus Overview

  • In Exodus, we read about Jesus as the Passover Lamb.
  • In Leviticus,  we will read of Jesus as our Sacrifice for Sin.

Look at the first 4 letters in this title and you will get an idea of what we are about to read. Leviticus. Levi was one of the 12 sons of  Jacob (Israel).  Due to major disobedience in the land of Shechem (vengeance), they will not be allotted land when the Israelites are given the Promise Land.  However, the Levites stood with Moses when it came time to purify the camp after the Golden Calf, so this tribe will be carved out for the caring of the tabernacle, the Priesthood.

The Pentateuch (first 5 books of the bible) is like a mini-series, and we are in Part 3 of 5.  After the Israelites exit Egypt they spend a year at Mt. Sinia where God gives them the law, confirms His Covenant, establishes organization, and finally dwells with them.

We learned that the Hebrew word is always taken from the beginning of the text.  In this case, this book is called “Wayyigra”- Then the Lord Called.   When Alexander the Great asked for the scriptures to be translated into Greek, it was named “Leuitikon” characterizing the book concerning the Levites.

We will read about principles that will answer the basic question: how do sinful people come into the presence of a Holy God?

  • Genesis saw man fall,
  • Exodus saw man redeemed,
  • in Leviticus, we will see man properly worship God.

We will be in Leviticus for just over a week.  One word you are going to note is the word Holy.  It is mentioned 152 times in this book.

Be Holy because I, the Lord your God, am Holy”.

Holy means to be “set apart”. However, it means more than that; it means to be pure, living according to a higher moral, consecrated.

As you read this book, see what it took to be set apart then, but let God speak to you about being set apart today with the same principles.

This book is called the Levitical Graveyard.  Why??  MANY people fall off a chronological read through because of their lack of interest in this book.  It is for ONE week.  You WILL NOT stop reading.  Say it: “I will get through Leviticus!”

“All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” 2 Tim 3:16

Click here to print if you want to use it as a checklist.

You don’t have to read this part if you don’t want.  Just on my heart to talk about.

Before we even begin this book I want to talk about something VERY important.  Many people, maybe you (and that is ok) believe that Salvation in the Old Testament is different in the New Testament.  I have often thought “wow, I am so glad I am on this side of the Cross because I LOVE animals and I am not sure I would be saved if I had to look a sweet little lamb in the eye and slit its neck”.  These sacrifices may have “atoned” their sins but that was to keep a fellowship, a relationship with the Lord…NOT SALVATION.  When were Israelites at the Tabernacle redeemed??  Was it AT the Tabernacle making continual sacrifices…No.  Stay with me here.

“I have spoken to you of earthly things and you do not believe; how then will you believe if I speak of heavenly things? No one has ever gone into heaven except the one who came from heaven—the Son of Man. Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him.”  For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him”.

Believe and Eternal.  The keywords.

The Israelites’ Salvation was at the Passover a year before.  They BELIEVED that through a sacrifice of an unblemished, perfect sacrifice death would pass over them!   Just as they believed in the lifting of the snake in the wilderness would save them. (If you don’t know about the snake then that is your incentive to stay with the read-through Numbers so that you will never look at an ambulance the same ).

Image result for ambulance symbol snake

Now…after the Red Sea were they sinless?  HECK NO!  They grumbled, they idolized a calf, they grumbled again.  Here is another BIG word I didn’t understand when I moved to the Bible Belt (people talk “Christianese” and I was lost like a ball in weeds when they talked).  Sanctification.

  • Salvation is an event
  • Sanctification is a process

Exodus Overview

Here is a quick overview of Exodus.  We will turn the page from Genesis to Exodus and over 400 years will have passed. The Hebrew title of this book is Shemot “names”, based on the first keyword of the text.  The English title was given when Alexander the Great was translating the Bible into Greek and the scholars named the book from the theme,  Exodus.  The Exodus is a foreshadow of being delivered and redeemed from the bondage of sin, accomplished only through a substitute for your sin: the Passover Lamb: Jesus.

Click here to print

As we read this book we will affirm:

  • Exodus teaches the sovereignty of God:
    • “Sovereignty” is the attribute of God that expresses the fact that He is the ultimate ruler of the universe. There is no one higher in authority than He. As “Sovereign,” He has all power. ”  We can see God’s sovereignty clearly in His superiority over all the so-called “gods of Egypt.”
  • Exodus teaches the salvation of man:
    • Exodus teaches that God provides salvation for man. Man does not provide it for himself.

Exodus will be a 2-week read.  It will just as fast as Genesis so make sure you have time carved out in your day where you have a plan to read.  Early in the morning, listen to it in the car, on your lunch break, in bed at night.  Just have a plan.

Patriarch Overview (Genesis 12-50)

Back to Genesis Tomorrow!  We are going to cover 360 years in just 2 weeks!!  Buckle up, kids!!

  • The History of Abraham (12-25)
  • The History of Isaac (26-27)
  • The History of Jacob (28-39)
  • The History of Joseph (37-50)

Timeline: it is about 400 years after the flood.  We will begin with an Unconditional Covenant.  Covenant, by the way,  means an agreement, a  promise, a contact, an oath, that God will not break.  At the beginning of this section, we will read about the Covenant with Abraham.  The Abrahamic Covenant is unconditional (one-sided…not an “If…then” promise).   God makes a covenant with Abraham, then repeats the Covenant with Abraham’s son Isaac, then repeats it a third time with Abraham’s grandson Jacob. This is why we will see throughout the Bible: “The God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, the God of our fathers”.

We have been in Job for 2 weeks so let’s read the scripture we left off in Chapter 11 in Genesis: This will help as you read.  I do not print every visual, but this is one I printed and wrote on for notes.   Click here if you would like to print.Image result for terah family tree

“Terah became the father of Abram, Nahor and Haran. And Haran became the father of Lot.  While his father Terah was still alive, Haran died in Ur of the Chaldeans, in the land of his birth. Abram and Nahor both married. The name of Abram’s wife was Sarai, and the name of Nahor’s wife was Milcah; she was the daughter of Haran, the father of both Milcah and Iscah.  Now Sarai was barren; she had no children.  Terah took his son Abram, his grandson Lot son of Haran, and his daughter-in-law Sarai, the wife of his son Abram, and together they set out from Ur of the Chaldeans to go to Canaan. But when they came to Haran, they settled there.

  Terah lived 205 years, and he died in Haran.”

Abram (his name will be changed to Abraham) Unsettled – Sister Talk: Faith

Understanding where Abram lived will give you a better picture of what was being asked of him.  The land: Ur of the Chaldeans was the wealthiest city. The history in this region exceeds that of the land of Egypt and its pyramids

The great Ziggurat of ancient Ur was built by King Ur-Nammu who ruled the area of ancient Ur around 2100 BC. This would’ve been approximately 250 years after the flood.Ziggurat of Ur (Artist's Impression) (Illustration) - Ancient History Encyclopedia

Archaeologists estimate that there were approximately 24,000 people living in the city of Ur during the time of Abraham. The people of ancient Mesopotamia worshiped many gods, and the people of Ur worshiped their chief god named Nanna, the moon-god.

So God is going to choose Abraham to leave here 😳

Joshua 24. When Joshua renews the Covenant in the Promised Land he talks about the history of Abraham and says to all the people: 2“This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: ‘Long ago your ancestors, including Terah the father of Abraham and Nahor, lived beyond the Euphrates River and worshiped other gods. But I took your father Abraham from the land beyond the Euphrates and led him throughout Canaan and gave him many descendants.” 

Extra Credit: if you want more read Act 7 😁

See you tomorrow.  I am so excited!

Job Overview

Listen, I am going to be transparent.  I LOVE the Bible.  However, when I think about 2 weeks in a book of Poetry I am not motivated.  If there was ever a time to encourage me…this is it!  I am determined to dig deeper in this book.  

Tomorrow we jump into Job (pronounced Jobe).  Job in Hebrew is Iyyov meaning “persecuted” or “where is thy divine father?”

The only time I heard the name Job was on the Tom Cruise film: Mission Impossible.   When I was checking out churches (to fit in, un the South), I heard his name mentioned in church, and I was like “the agent on Mission Impossible??”  Well, we all started somewhere, right?

Here is your visual:

Image result for book of job timeline

On the surface, the book of Job is a simple story: Job, devoted to God, is struck down in the prime of his life.  He and his friends strive to understand the reason for his sudden trials.  God appears and he is restored.  Clearly it’s not that simple…not at all! 

Satan accused the righteous of being faithful to God only for what they could get.  Satan’s confidence that he could turn Job probably came from his small victory in Heaven when he was able to turn holy angels to rebel once.  God allows Satan to try to prove his point but fails.  True Faith is unbreakable.  I am reminded that Jesus said in John 10: 

28 I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one will snatch them out of my hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand. 30 I and the Father are one.”

I am going out on a limb but I think we have all asked ourselves “If God is a loving God, then why do good people suffer?”

We need to keep in mind that believers will suffer because of sin, for correction, for strengthening, and sometimes to reveal His comfort.  But there are times that suffering occurs for purposes that we will never be able to discern.

Job and his friends want to sit around and analyze Job’s suffering to determine the “cause” and “solution”.  Not only were their ideas wrong, but they also made matters worse for Job.  Our “fancy” word for the day is “Theodicy”.  “Theodicy is a branch of philosophy dealing with the issue of evil in light of the existence of God. If God is just and holy and good, then how do evil and misery exist? That’s the question theodicy wrestles with.  So does Lex Luther in the movie Batman vs. Superman 😂.

Here is your cheat sheet:

  • Job: patient under suffering, his Faith was allowed to be tested by God.
  • Eliphaz- friend- believed Job was suffering because of his sins.
  • Bildad- friend- believed Job had not repented of his sins (and until he does he will suffer).
  • Zophar- friend- believed Job should have been suffering more for his sin.  
  • Elihu- (the quiet one) stood up to the 3 friends- believed God was using suffering to mold Job’s character.

So Job will take us  12 days to read. Why do the righteous suffer?  This book will show the power of Satan.  Satan may be mighty, but God is ALMIGHTY.  This book will show the limit of Satan, and the Sovereignty of God.

11 As you know, we count as blessed those who have persevered. You have heard of Job’s perseverance and have seen what the Lord finally brought about. The Lord is full of compassion and mercy.- James 5:11


Genesis 1-11 Overview

Our first overview.  How exciting! I think it is important to have a general overview of the books before we begin them.  Genesis is created from 11 documents written separately and then put together to be what we call the ‘BOOK OF GENESIS’.

When the books of the Bible were originally written, they did not contain chapter or verse references. The Bible was divided into chapters and verses to help us find Scriptures more quickly.  The chapter divisions commonly used today were developed by Stephen Langton, an Archbishop of Canterbury. Langton put the chapter divisions into place in around A.D. 1227. The Wycliffe English Bible of 1382 was the first Bible to use this chapter pattern.

The title of the books were often taken from the first word of the section.  In Hebrew, the first word is ‘Bereshit’- which means ‘The Origins’ or ‘In the beginning’.  Genesis is the foundation the other 65 books will sit on.

Genesis chapter 1 gives an “overview” of the Creation and then Genesis 2 rewinds and puts it under a microscope for detail.

Our agenda for the next 3 days is Genesis 1-11: The Creation, Adam and Eve, Cain and Abel, Noah, and the Tower of Babel.  Have you read these before? (ask someone to join the read that maybe has never read them….that was me just a few years ago)

Don’t skim…read it like you have never read it before!

  • Author: God (we believe through Moses….he actually will be the author for the first 5 books)
  • Setting:  Middle East (you should have seen my face when I learned this!)

So let’s look at the map and see where it all begins (and ends).  Oh my Stars!!

Here is the schedule: 2021

I really like “visuals”.  I recommend that you keep a folder or a small binder for any handouts that will help you as we read (just print the ones you like and take notes on them).  Here is your first one: Reading Schedule Checklist.   I already pre-loaded visuals in the “Printables” section in the menu bar so you can look at them anytime.

This is a printable version if you are a “checklist” person.  In the menu, I have the schedule posted also and you just click the day you want to read.  When Bible Gateway opens you can click the little speaker if you prefer to listen to it.(pick your preferred version too)

The second handout is your first timeline.  Click here.  Timelines (and maps, charts, and genealogies) are my favorite!

We will read the Bible in historical chronological order.  There will be times we will jump out of a book and into another.  Trust me, you are going to love it.  Before we begin a new book, I will post an “overview” of the book the night before.  Do not get bogged down with the Blog-it’s not that important-Reading the Bible is.

Read ahead or be behind!  Just be in it!  If you read the Bible and timed it, it would amount to 70 hours.  In a year that equals .7% of your time.  Sounds easy?  Nope.  I highly recommend an accountability partner (Even Paul had a team to encourage him).  Last, but most important: ask questions.  If you think your question is “stupid” you are letting the enemy whisper in your ear.  I was blessed with friends when I read my first Bible in 2009-I literally asked everything.  Maybe it was easy for me because it was “new” since I was not raised in the church.  I find people raised in church have the hardest time asking questions.  This year, I am going to ask questions in the comment section for others to help me.   If you are already excited and can’t wait to start…start!

Reading the Bible in 2021

Last year a group came together to read through the Bible chronologically. I created a post to give insights on my research of the day. This year I want more quiet time, less research time. Usually when I do a “Read Through” I do not look back on past notes so that God reveals new scriptures for me to dig into. 2021 I am going to be a reader, (not a writer so much). I am going to use past posts so that I can spend more time in the Word, less time in commentaries.

If you would like to read through it with me, I would love that. I am going to be transparent: many will not finish it. You have to decide if this is going to be your commitment for 2021.

Tips if you choose to do this:

  • Set a time of day when you will read. Having a plan helps.
    • Choose to read while drinking coffee
    • Listen in the car on the way to work
    • Read on your lunch break
    • Listen while you are folding laundry
    • Read/listen on treadmill
    • Read each night before bed
  • Be aware of things in your life that can be eliminated or postponed until the reading of the day is complete.
    • Read before Social Media scrolling (ouch) Insta, Face, Tik Tok, even on-line shopping
    • Read before Netflix/Hulu watching
    • Read before you play a game on your phone
    • Read before you catch up on the news of the day
  • Do you need accountability?
    • Find someone to read with you who will shoot you a text to make sure you are on track
    • Tell a spouse or a child to ask you what the reading was about each day
  • What do you do if you get behind? (you will)
    • Find a place you will be distraction-free (the park, your car, a closet in your house maybe), and just sit and read/listen to the schedule (not the posts…skip those)
    • read during “spare time”- sitting in a parking lot waiting for practice to be over
    • read in the pick-up line at school
    • staff meetings (just kidding…sort of)
  • Be prepared to say “I am pretty far behind, I am going to jump in where everyone else is”
    • This is my 5th read through and the #1 feedback I get is “I just got too far behind, I regret not skipping and jumping back in”. I am telling you, it is worth skipping and jumping in rather than giving up and not reading at all. TRUST ME.
  • The site can be viewed on a phone, tablet, or laptop. (easiest is a laptop, but keep the icon on your phone for convenience
  • Last but not least, some books are “hard to get through”- stick with it, you will be glad you did. I promise.