Sunday, April 29, 2012

April 29: Genesis 35

Today's reading in our daily plan is Genesis 35. Take a moment to pray, asking God to speak to you from this passage. Then read, using the following notes and questions to help you get everything out of the passage.

SAY WHAT? (What is the passage saying?)

  • This chapter is pretty straight forward. We read about God telling Jacob to go out and worship him again. God protected Jacob and his household as he went so that none of the other cities residents would attack them.
  • Jacob meets with God again and God tells Jacob his name is changed to Israel again. It makes me wonder why Jacob hadn’t been going by his “new” name. Maybe Jacob didn’t feel worthy of it. But God tells him he’s renamed again.
  • Then we read about a series of deaths in Jacob’s family. First, Deborah dies. She was Jacob’s mother’s nurse. She was someone who had been in Jacob’s life since he was born. Then Rachel, Jacob’s wife, dies giving birth to a son. Rachel was the woman Jacob was madly in love with so this must have been very difficult. Then lastly, Jacob’s father, Isaac, dies.

SO WHAT? (What are the underlying principles?)

  • This chapter was pretty bad for Jacob. Talk about a tough time in Jacob’s life. His nanny (for lack of a better term), his wife and his father die. Many people would understand if Jacob had turned from God during this time but he didn’t. Life isn’t promised to be free from pain for followers of Jesus. But Jesus does promise to always be there with us to comfort us in our painful times.

NOW WHAT? (How will you personally apply this passage?)

  • Life is full of bad times but God is always there for us. I know this has been true in my life. I’ve had a lot of dark times I’ve had to walk through (from losing family members to losing a child of my own) and every time God is there to help and comfort me. I couldn’t have done it without him. Whatever you’re going through right now that feels more than you can bear; take it to God. He wants to be there for you.