TODAY’S SPECIAL: 3 John 1-14
TO CHEW ON: "Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well." 3 John 2
When you hear the word “blessing” what do you think of? Saying a prayer over food before you eat? The pastor praying a benediction at the end of a church service?
You’re right - a blessing is these things, and more too. Any time we ask for God’s favor or declare it over someone, we speak a blessing. Look up the verses, below, to see what the Bible says about blessing and being blessed, then fill in the missing words:
1. Paul usually began his letters by speaking a blessing of God’s _______ and _______ to his readers (Ephesians 1:2).
2. In today’s verse, John speaks a blessing of ________ for his friend’s body and soul. (3 John 2).
3. Jesus took ________ in his arms, put his hands on them and blessed them (Mark 10:16).
"Suffer the Little Children to Come Unto Me" by James Tissot, 1836-1902
4. Jesus blessed or ________ ________ for food before eating (Matthew 14:19).
5. We will inherit a blessing by not repaying ______ with _____...
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TODAY’S SPECIAL: Genesis 27:1-41
TO CHEW ON: "But he said, 'Your brother came deceitfully and took your blessing.'" Genesis 27:35
Isaac was old and knew he would soon die. He asked Esau, his favorite son, to catch some wild game and make his favorite food. Then he would say a blessing over him.
Rebekah heard this. She didn’t want Isaac to bless Esau. Jacob was her favorite son. And hadn’t God said to her at the birth of Jacob and Esau, “The older will serve the younger”?
Here’s what happened next. But one of these things is not true. Which one?
1. Jacob brought Rebekah two young goats and she prepared food for Isaac.2. Rebekah dressed Jacob in Esau’s clothes and covered his hands and neck to smell and feel like Esau.3. Jacob took Rebekah’s food to Isaac and Isaac ate it.4. Isaac blessed Jacob after he smelled his clothes and felt his skin to make sure it was Esau.5. Esau brought prepared food to his father.6. Isaac told Esau he had already eaten and spoken a blessing – on someone else!7. Esau didn’t care that Jacob had stolen his blessing.8. Esau vowed to kill Jacob as soon as their father died.
By tricking Isaac in...
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TODAY’S SPECIAL: Genesis 25:19-34
TO CHEW ON: "Jacob replied, 'First sell me your birthright.''Look, I am about to die,' Esau said. 'What good is the birthright to me?'" Genesis 25:31-32
Though Jacob and Esau (sons of Isaac and Rebekah) were twins, they were far from identical. What things do we know about them that show how different they were? (Genesis 25:27-28)
One day when Esau came back from hunting, Jacob was making stew. When hungry Esau asked Jacob for some stew to eat, Jacob used his cleverness to get Esau to promise him the birthright in exchange for a pot of stew.
A birthright was a big deal. It was what the oldest son in a family inherited. As firstborn of the twins and the oldest son, Esau’s inheritance was twice as big as Jacob’s. The birthright also brought with it the job of being the family leader next to Isaac.
But in one reckless moment, Esau said, “What good is a birthright to me if I die by hunger anyway?” Then he promised Jacob his birthright if he would give him a bowl of stew. Later he regretted this decision with all his heart.
PRAYER: Dear God, please help me to make decisions based on wisdom,...
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TODAY'S SPECIAL: Genesis 24:12-20, 57-61
TO CHEW ON: "Then he prayed, 'O Lord, God of my master Abraham, make me successful today, and show kindness to my master Abraham.'" Genesis 24:12
Abraham sent his servant on an errand. He was to find a wife for Isaac among Abraham’s relatives far away. This was a hard job. As the servant traveled he wondered how would he ever find Abraham’s family, let alone know which was the right girl.
When he got to the faraway land, he still didn’t know what to do. He found a well and sat there to rest. As he rested he prayed, "God please help me find the right girl. May it be the girl that when I ask her for a drink, she'll offer to water my camels too. If that happens, I'll take it as a sign that she's the right girl."
Before he finished praying beautiful Rebekah came to the well.
Unscramble the words to find out what the servant said and how the girl answered him (Genesis 24:17-19)
Could this be the right girl?
It turned out Rebekah was also one of Abraham’s relatives. When the servant explained his errand to Rebekah’s family they asked her, “Will you go?” and...
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TODAY'S SPECIAL: Genesis 22:1-19
TO CHEW ON: “...and through your offspring all nations on earth will be blessed, because you have obeyed me.” Genesis 22:18
Imagine Abraham’s horror the day God told him to sacrifice his son Isaac. Perhaps he had some of these questions and thoughts:
- Did I hear God right?- Why would God make me wait all these years to have a son, only to ask me to kill him?- Didn’t God forbid human sacrifice?- God can do anything. Maybe He is planning to raise Isaac from the dead.
Whatever Abraham was thinking, he didn’t argue with God. Instead, he took Isaac, the stuff they needed for the sacrifice and they went to the place God told him.
Using Genesis 22:9-12 as a guide, put the rest of the story in order.An angel stops Abraham from sacrificing Isaac - Artist unknown
Abraham’s faith was tested to see what he believed in. God was testing him to see whether he believed in what his mind told him God would do, or whether he believed in God, even though he didn’t understand. Abraham’s actions showed he believed in God. He passed the test!...
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