Tricked!

TODAY’S SPECIAL: Joshua 9:1-21 TO CHEW ON: "The Israelites sampled their provisions but did not inquire of the Lord." Joshua 9:14 Have you ever been tricked? Maybe you were tricked for a good thing, like having someone throw a surprise party for you. Or maybe it was for a bad thing, like falling when someone pulled a chair away. The Israelites had a trick played on them the day some raggedy strangers rode into camp. “Who are you and what do you want?” Joshua asked them. “We’re people from a far country,” they told him. “We’ve heard about how God has helped you and we’re scared of you. We want to sign a peace treaty with you.” “How do I know that you’re not from close by?” Joshua asked. “Here’s proof,” the men said. They showed Joshua dry, moldy bread, cracked wineskins, torn faded clothes and worn out sandals. “These things were all new when we started on this trip,” they told Joshua. “We’ve been traveling so long the bread got moldy, the wineskins cracked and our clothes wore out.”The Israelites eat the Gibeonites bread - Artist unknown Joshua and the people tried the bread. It was very old. They examined the wineskins and the clothes. They...

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Tags: trust trickery prayer God’s help consequences

Samson Superman

TODAY’S SPECIAL: Judges 16:4-22 TO CHEW ON: "With such nagging she prodded him day after day until he was sick to death of it. So he told her everything.” Judges 16:16,17 “I’m in love with a Philistine girl,” Samson announced to his dad one day. “Get her for me.” Samson’s parents didn’t approve. “Can’t you find a good homegrown girl to marry?” they asked. But Samson insisted. And so began his up-and-down relationship with the Philistines. The marriage soon went sour when Samson’s new wife tricked him. He left her. When he went back, he found that she was now married to someone else. That made him furious. He caught 300 foxes, tied their tails together, lit them on fire and released them to burn the Philistines’ fields of wheat, grapes and olives. And so it went. Again and again Samson had dealings with the Philistines and got double-crossed. That made him angry and, with his strength from God, he got even. Once he killed 1000 men with only the bone of a donkey as a weapon. Another time he escaped capture by breaking ropes he was tied with, then busting open the gates of the city by pulling them off their hinges. In this way...

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Tags: trickery temptation miracles Judges God’s plan God’s help drawing

Never Too Young

TODAY’S SPECIAL: Acts 23:12-22 TO CHEW ON: “Then Paul called one of the centurions and said, ‘Take this young man to the commander; he has something to tell him.’” Acts 23:17 Have you ever thought you have to be grown up to be used by God? Perhaps Paul’s nephew felt that way. Then came the day he overheard a secret plan. He heard forty Jewish men promising each other they wouldn’t eat or drink until they’d killed Paul. They would ask the Roman commander to bring Paul to a special place. They would hide along the road Paul would take. When Paul and the soldiers came by, they would pounce on Paul and kill him. The boy went straight to Paul with news of this plot."Paul's nephew" - By Johann C. Weigel, 1695 Paul sent the boy to the commander, to tell him what he’d heard. As a result Paul was never sent to the meeting that day. Because his nephew did what he could, Paul’s life was saved. Have you ever thought you were too young for God to use? You aren’t you know. God uses people of all ages. The main thing is be obedient and do the things He tells you....

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Tags: trickery Saul/Paul obedience God’s plan God’s help God’s care Acts

Led by a Star

TODAY'S SPECIAL: Matthew 2:1-15 TO CHEW ON: “’Where is the one who has been born King of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.’” Matthew 2:2 Every night the wise men studied the stars. They wrote down when they rose and set. They gazed at their colors and brightness. They drew them and looked for shapes formed by their positions in the sky. Most of all they tried to figure out what the stars meant. One day a new bright star came out. Such a star could mean only one thing: a new king had been born."Wise Men Follow a Star" by A. O. Stemler and Bess Bruce Cleaveland The star seemed to be moving, so the wise men followed it. For weeks and months they rode, probably on camels, and always at night so they could see the star’s light. It led them west toward Judea. The star must be telling of a new Jewish king....

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Tags: trickery prophecy Matthew Jesus God’s plan God’s care dreams angels

Hidden But Not Secret

TODAY’S SPECIAL: Joshua 7:10-25 TO CHEW ON: “Israel has sinned; they have violated my covenant, which I commanded them to keep. They have taken some of the devoted things; they have stolen, they have lied, they have put them with their own possessions.” Joshua 7:11 Have you ever done something sneaky – stolen something, told a lie, or cheated on an exam? Achan did such a thing when he went into Jericho. He had heard Joshua’s command about what to do with the loot. But when he saw a beautiful robe, some silver coins, and a wedge of gold, he sneaked these things home, dug a hole inside his tent and hid them in the ground. A few days later Joshua sent scouts to Ai, the next city. “It’s a small town,” the scouts reported when they got back. “We’ll only need part of the army to capture it.” But the people of Ai chased the Israelites from their city, beat them and killed many soldiers. Joshua and the people were stunned. Joshua fell on his face before God and asked, “Why didn’t you help us?” “Get up!” God told him. “There’s sin in the camp. Someone has stolen and lied. You need to deal with...

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Tags: trickery sin memory verse Joshua disobedience consequences choices

Hard Times

TODAY’S SPECIAL: Genesis 39:7-23 TO CHEW ON: “But while Joseph was there in the prison, the Lord was with him; he showed him kindness and granted him favor in the eyes of the prison warden.” (Genesis 39:20b,21) Have you ever been blamed for something you didn’t do? That’s what happened to Joseph. At first everything went well. When the Ishmaelites who had bought Joseph got to Egypt they sold him to Pharaoh’s servant Potiphar. Joseph liked his job and did such good work, Potiphar soon put him in charge of everything he owned. But Mrs. Potiphar liked Joseph too – in a sexual way. She tried over and over to get him to sin with her. Over and over, Joseph said, “No.” One day she tricked him. She got him alone in the house. “Come to me,” she said to Joseph. Again Joseph said, “No!” Then he ran out of the house. Mrs. Potiphar was angry and humiliated. “Joseph tried to rape me,” she lied. Immediately Potiphar arrested Joseph and put him in the king’s prison. But instead of feeling sorry for himself, Joseph got right back to work helping the jailer. In no time the jailer put him in charge of all the prisoners....

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Tags: trickery problems Joseph Genesis Egypt

Finishing Well

TODAY’S SPECIAL: Nehemiah 6:1-16 TO CHEW ON: "So the wall was completed on the twenty-fifth of Elul, in fifty-two days. When all our enemies heard about this, all the surrounding nations were afraid and lost their self-confidence, because they realized that this work had been done with the help of our God." Nehemiah 6:15,16 The wall was nearly done. There were no more broken gaps and only the gates were missing. But instead of the opposition getting less, it got worse. One day Nehemiah got another message from Sanballat and Geshem. “Come to a meeting in a nearby village,” it said. Nehemiah smelled trouble. He was sure these men were planning to harm him. He sent back word, “I’m busy on a big project.”\ They didn’t give up easily. Three more times they called him to a meeting. Finally on the fifth try, the messenger showed Nehemiah another letter from Sanballat. It said, “We know that you and the Jews are plotting a revolution. You’re planning to become king. If you don’t want this reported back to Artaxerxes, you’d better meet with us.” Still Nehemiah refused to be distracted. “These are all lies,” he wrote back. “You’re making this up out of your head.” But now...

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Tags: work trickery project problems perseverance Nehemiah

Defiant Daniel

TODAY’S SPECIAL: Daniel 6:12-23 TO CHEW ON: “ 'My God sent his angel, and he shut the mouths of the lions. They have not hurt me, because I was found innocent in his sight. Nor have I ever done any wrong before you, Your Majesty.' ” Daniel 6:22 “Bring them in!” commanded king Darius to his servant. The Babylon rulers smirked as they entered and bowed before the king. “We’ve found someone who broke your new law,” they said. “We caught Daniel praying to his God.” Darius was shocked. Not Daniel! He was his favorite servant. And then he understood. The other rulers were jealous of Daniel. They wanted him gone. They knew that he prayed to his God three times a day. So that was why they had come to the king and suggested he pass the new law. It said that for thirty days it was illegal to pray to anyone but the king. Punishment for disobeying was death by hungry lions. All day King Darius tried to get Daniel freed. But he couldn’t. “May the God whom you serve rescue you,” he said to Daniel as servants tossed him into the lions' den....

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Tags: trickery persecution miracles God’s help Daniel courage consequences

Betrayed!

TODAY’S SPECIAL: John 13:18-30 TO CHEW ON: “'Very truly I tell you, one of you is going to betray me.'” - Jesus, John 13:21 Your brother promises to wait for you after school, but then walks home without you. You tell your best friend a secret and ask her not to tell anyone. But the next day you find that five people in your class know your secret. Your baseball team has its own signals. One day you play a team that knows exactly what each of your signals means. You have been betrayed! Whether betrayal comes from someone disappointing you, telling your secrets or helping your enemy, being betrayed is not fun. "My Betrayer Is Here" - Artist unknown Jesus was betrayed too. His betrayer came to the garden where He was praying. He came with soldiers who were planning to arrest Jesus. 1. Who was the traitor? (John 18:1-6)a)____ Johnb)____ Peterc)____ Judas. 2. How did he betray Jesus: (Mark 14:43-46)a)____ He spread bad stories about Jesus all around town.b)____ He lost the money bag he was in charge of.c)____ He kissed Jesus to show the soldiers which person to arrest...

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Tags: trickery storytelling Mark John Jesus God’s plan friendship Christ’s passion

Tricked!

TODAY’S SPECIAL: Genesis 29:15-28Jacob falls in love with - Artist unknown TO CHEW ON: "When morning came, there was Leah! So Jacob said to Laban, 'What is this you have done to me? I served you for Rachel, didn’t I? Why have you deceived me?'" Genesis 29:25 Jacob eventually found his mother’s relatives in Haran. There he got work with his uncle Laban. He also fell in love with Laban’s beautiful daughter Rachel. Laban told Jacob he could marry Rachel if he worked for him seven years. Seven years pass quickly. Now it was the wedding day. But after the party was over, Jacob found his uncle had married him to Leah, Rachel’s older sister. (In that time women’s wedding clothes included veils to hide their faces.) “Why did you deceive me?” Jacob asked his uncle. Now Jacob found out how Esau felt when he was tricked. Jesus said, “Whatever measure you use will be used towards you and even more than that.” (Mark 4:24 Phillips). As Jacob discovered, the way we treat others becomes the way others treat us....

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Tags: trickery marriage Jacob Genesis consequences

Deceit and Trickery

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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Tags: trickery Rebekah puzzle Jacob Isaac Genesis faith Esau


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