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January 18

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“Then Midianite traders passed by; so the brothers pulled Joseph up and lifted him out of the pit, and sold him to the Ishmaelites for twenty shekels of silver. And they took Joseph to Egypt” (Genesis 37:28 NKJV).

From: January 18, 2020


Jacob’s sons were jealous of their brother, Joseph. He was the favored son of Jacob’s favorite wife, Rachel, who had died giving birth to Benjamin, the youngest. Joseph had made things worse with his brothers by giving their father a bad report of their shepherding. He also had shared his dreams of them someday bowing down to him.
One day Jacob sent 17 year-old Joseph to check on his brothers who were feeding his flock at Shechem. When they saw Joseph coming towards them wearing the tunic of many colors that their father had given him, they plotted to murder their brother. They stripped him of his clothes and threw him in a dry cistern. When they saw a band of traders passing by, one of the older brothers, Judah, convinced them that it would be better to sell him into slavery rather than murder him. They agreed and sold their brother for 20 shekels of silver. The traders sold him on the slave market in Egypt.
Joseph is a Christological type, which means his life was similar in some aspect, so that it pointed to the coming Christ. Notice the similarities between Joseph and Jesus. He was rejected by his brethren. Betrayed. Stripped naked. Thrown into a pit (Jesus was put in a tomb). Sold for 20 pieces of silver (Jesus was betrayed for 30). Yet years later, when famine struck the entire land, Joseph would be their savior. For he was eventually elevated from the pit to the palace of Egypt, where he fed and forgave his starving brothers.
PRAYER: Dear Father, thank You for sending Your Son, Jesus to us. He was betrayed and sold by his brethren, crucified and buried for our sins. Yet, He has risen and ascended to Your right hand, where He intercedes for us. We have believed in Him as our Savior and Redeemer. Now we are Your children by grace through faith. Thank You Lord! In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.

“For as Jonah was in the belly of the great fish for three days and three nights, so will the Son of Man be in the heart of the earth for three days and three nights” (Matthew 12:40 NLT).

From: January 18, 2019


Jesus affirmed two miraculous events in one verse. First, what many call fable, Jesus treated as fact. Jesus not only affirmed the Jonah story in Scripture, but saw it as a Messianic sign. Second, He prophesies His own death and resurrection. Modern man may discount the stories of the Bible as myth, but Jesus did not. He not only believed Scripture, He fulfilled it.
Many have a hard time believing that the Jonah story is true. But which is harder to believe? That Jonah survived three days in the belly of a fish? Or that Jesus was raised from the dead after three days in a tomb? Jesus believed both. And I believe in Jesus. This is not blind faith. It is simple trust in the One that has saved us.
PRAYER: Lord, thank You for overcoming sin, death and the grave, so that we might be saved. We serve a risen Savior! Help us to trust Your written Word as we trust in You, the Living Word. Your Word is life to us. In Jesus name, Amen.

“Anyone who speaks against the Son of Man can be forgiven, but anyone who speaks against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven, either in this world or in the world to come.” (Matthew 12:32 NLT).

From: January 18, 2018

Yes. But it’s not what most people think. It’s not mass murder or some heinous crime. The blood of Christ is sufficient to cover any sin. But it cannot cover the continual, willful rejection of the Holy Spirit’s testimony concerning Jesus Christ. The Pharisees had witnessed Jesus setting a demon-possessed man free, restoring his sight and speech, yet they attributed the miracle to Satan. Even though they had knowledge of the Scriptures, which spoke of Christ, they had evidence of His miraculous power, they had the Spirit bearing witness to His identity… They willfully rejected Jesus. How can God forgive the one who will not recognize and receive Jesus as Savior and Lord? They have rejected the very One who would forgive them by rejecting and even speaking against the Holy Spirit who testifies of Jesus.

“O Lord, You are the portion of my inheritance and my cup” (Psalms 16:5 NKJV).

From: January 18, 2017

David called the Lord his “portion, inheritance and cup.” This seems a clear allusion to the portion appointed to the Levitical priests who served in the Temple. David declared that he was satisfied not with lands, titles, or riches, but in the Lord Himself. The Lord was his delight and joy. The Lord was the source of any goodness and blessing that he had, therefore he would rather have the Lord than any blessing that the Lord bestowed. David sought the Lord’s face rather than His hand. Might we pray today: “Lord, I am Yours and You are mine. You are the One I long for, You are my inheritance and my great reward.”

‘Then Judah identified them and said, “She is more righteous than I, since I did not give her to my son Shelah.” And he did not know her again’ (Genesis 38:26 ESV)

From: January 18, 2016

In the middle of the Joseph story, the Bible takes a detour to offer details about Judah and his twin boys, Perez and Zerah, born to his daughter-in-law, Tamar. This story is disturbing, not only because of the sudden change of topic, but because it seems so immoral and foreign to modern ears. The tradition of the brother providing a son to his deceased brother’s wife is foreign to us, but it was a way of preserving the family line and inheritance, and also a provision for the widow. Yet, the way that Tamar tricked Judah into fulfilling this tradition, after he withheld his third son from her, seems even more strange. What’s the moral of such a story? Why does the Bible include this story filled with deceit, masturbation, fornication, prostitution, and hypocrisy? Perhaps the Gospel of Matthew provides the answer. In his genealogy of Jesus, he says, “This is the genealogy of Jesus the Messiah the son of David, the son of Abraham: Abraham was the father of Isaac, Isaac the father of Jacob, Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers, Judah the father of Perez and Zerah, whose mother was Tamar” (Matthew 1:1-3). You see, the Bible is not so much a story about humanity. It is a story about God, specifically, God’s Son. Tamar is the first of five women mentioned in Christ’s lineage. Perhaps the Bible included her story in Genesis because of its connection to the promised Messiah, who came into this messy, sin-filled world to save sinners like us. Tamar needed a son to rescue her. The Son born into her family line would rescue not only her, but all those willing to receive Him.

“For You will not leave my soul in Sheol, Nor will You allow Your Holy One to see corruption” (Psalm 16:10 NKJV)

From: January 18, 2015

Both the apostles Peter and Paul quoted this Psalm to make a case for Christ’s resurrection. Peter quoted this verse from King David in his sermon on the day of Pentecost describing him as a prophet who foresaw the resurrection of the Christ. Peter told the great crowd of Jews gathered in Jerusalem that they knew that David was dead and buried, so this verse must be predicting the Messiah’s death and resurrection. When he finished preaching, the people believed and three thousand were saved that day (Acts 2:14-41). Paul preached the gospel at Antioch using this same Psalm to support that the Bible had predicted the resurrection of the Messiah (Acts 13:16-41). This verse is an example of the three-stage fulfillment of prophecy: immediate, ongoing, and ultimate; and also its “both/and” nature. The truth is that God has not left David’s soul in Sheol and ultimately, God will raise his body from the grave. It predicts both David’s resurrection and God’s “Holy One” too. Christ, the Son of David, has already been raised. And someday soon, David will be raised along with all of the rest of God’s saints.

“So when the Ishmaelites, who were Midianite traders, came by, Joseph’s brothers pulled him out of the cistern and sold him to them for twenty pieces of silver. And the traders took him to Egypt” (Genesis 37:28)

From: January 18, 2014

Joseph is a Christological type, a foreshadowing of Christ. He is obedient to his father. Rejected by his brethren. And later, when he rises to power in Egypt, he is the savior of his people, forgiving them and taking care of them during the famine. God gave His people many foreshadowings to prepare them for Christ, but when He came, they treated Him worse than Joseph.

“For just as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth” (Matthew 12:40)

From: January 18, 2013

Jesus affirmed two miraculous events here. First, what many call fable (Jonah), Jesus treated as fact. Jesus not only affirmed the Jonah story in Scripture, but saw it as a Messianic sign. Second, He prophesies His own death and resurrection. Modern man may discount the stories of the Bible as myth, but Jesus did not. He not only believed Scripture, He fulfilled it.

“You will show me the way of life, granting me the joy of your presence and the pleasures of living with you forever” (Psalm 16:11)

From: January 18, 2012

This is real praise, an awareness of what the Lord has done, is doing and will do, and then, praising Him for it. When is the last time you wrote a love and praise letter like this to God?

“Do not withhold good from those who deserve it, when it is in your power to act” (Proverbs 3:27)

From: January 18, 2011

What makes us withhold good? Are we afraid we won’t have enough? Do we wonder if they deserve good? What good is within “your power to act?” Do the good you’ve been empowered to do!