BSF Genesis: Week 9, Day 5

Today’s Scriptures

Questions:

10.
a.
Son of Cush grandson of Ham, g-grandson of Noah. Became a mighty warrior on the earth. A mighty hunter before the Lord, Centers of his kingdom (was a king) Babylon, Shinar, Neneveh, Calah, Resen, Assyria.

b.
Bad – Nimrod means rebel. He rose in power but the power was “on the earth”. He put himself before the Lord. He became a King when there was no ordination of kings.

11.
In his time the earth was divided

12.
Job lived in the land of Uz, Jobab

13.
Because it is the truth, all of these places and lands came from people who came from Noah. To show that sin survived the flood. To show that man’s desire to “be like God” was the same after the flood as before.

My Daily Journal:

Why do the lists of “begots” appear in the bible, why all these names of people we’ve never heard of, never appear before or again?

Maybe Moses had a deal like J.K. Rowlings and he was getting paid by the word.  Probably not.  Maybe it was in their contract, like the credit roll at the end of a movie.  Probably not.

I think it is for 3 main reasons:

1. It is truth.  The bible is not a fictional story that is edited to appeal to a certain audience of time.  It is the truth as given by God and His inspired words to reveal His character.  These people lived, they were real and God got to say what was in and what was out of the printed copy.

2. They tie us to people, places and times.  It is like studying genealogy.  Understanding that we are related to real people who lived during this time, being able to connect to ancestors, connects us to events, places and people.  My neighbors didn’t just pop out of thin air, they have history that connect us together.  The same is true of our enemies.  At one point we were not only friends, but family, but we went different paths.  Having that connection back makes it much easier to join back together again.

3. They are a real legacy.  The people at the tower of babel wanted to make a name for themselves.  They wanted to work on their legacy.  If anyone ever called you a nimrod, it probably wasn’t a compliment.  One of our children’s leaders stated this well a few weeks ago.  “If your name was mentioned one time in the bible, what would you want it to say?”  For men like Enoch and Noah we see they walked with God and were righteous.  For people like Seba, Havilah, Sabtah, Raamah and Sabteka, they were sons.  Wh

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BSF Genesis: Week 9, Day 4

Today’s Scriptures

Questions:

7.
a.
Confused their language and scattered them

b.
Continuously. God’s hand is in all things. He does not prevent man from sinning, but He limits it now as always. He does it by allowing the repercussions of sin to play out (greed, lust, hiding, cheating) By our actions we make our towers fall

8.
God is love. It is only through communion with God that we gain insight into communion with others. Without God, we find the primary focus of our love to be self-love which leads to greed, self-serving, objectification of people, etc…

9.
a.
There are about 6800 spoken languages in the world today. But God has the power to touch the lips and ears of all people so they can hear His truth being spoken clearly

b.
Speak the truth in my language to all who I come in contact. Speak the truth in my actions to all who I come in contact. Speak the truth to myself about God. Speak the truth to God about himself, me and all those who I come in contact. Daily walk with God.

My Daily Journal:

I’ve struggled with the main message of this week, but today’s lesson helped it become clear.

The key phrase that I picked up on that was repeated 3 times is “come, let us”.

The people of this land and this time were trying to form a community without God.  They wanted to make their own kingdom inside God’s kingdom but without God in it.  It centers around them and what they want and how great they are, not God.

God longs for community with His creation.  That is why we were created.  That is what God is.  The Trinity is a divine community and God welcomes us in to it, he seeks us out and saves us so we can join.  Christ’s mission was to bring mankind back into the unity of the original creation before sin.  When ever 2 or more are gathered in His name, He is present.  God loves community, friendships, marriage, relationships, all with Him.

But we don’t include God in all of our communities, do we?  We compartmentalize Him.  God is great for our church community, but don’t talk about Him at work or school.  This is a sports team, not a Sunday school class.  My neighbors don’t go to church or believe but they are fun to hang around with.  If I want to be in the “in group” at school/work, then I need to tone down my chistian-speak.

We also hear it in the works that we do in “the community.”  We are welcoming to churches and church groups, but don’t push religion while you are doing the work, don’t proselytize.  Just be quiet and do the work, feed the people, build the homes, help the sick, but don’t bring God into it and you are welcome.

I particularly see it at this time of year because so many “community organizations” are collecting things for “the holidays.”  You know, the one day holiday where people get together and exchange gifts.  Don’t say the word – we don’t want any of that church stuff in our community, we just want the holy days, uh, holidays for our community without God.

In my opinion, it wasn’t the tower that pained God.  It was that they were using His word to form communities without Him.  They were using his word to confuse people into joining communities that excluded him.

So what does He do?  They wish to be confused and spread confusion, let them be confused – they aren’t using God’s Word to do it though.  They want to bond together without God, scatter them.

Want to feel less scattered and confused?  Bring God back into all your communities.  Commune with others and God.

BSF Genesis: Week 9, Day 3

Today’s Scriptures

Questions:

5.
a.
They conspire and plot in vain, they attempt to band together to replace God. They are rebuked by God

b.
We seek to replace God or, at a minimum, to remake God in our image instead of the other way around. We build up towers of praise to ourselves, but ignore the divine one who provides all

6.
Jesus (the way, truth, life). Salvation is found in no one else – Jesus is the only name by which we must be saved.

b.
Through prayer and study of His word. Through acts of random kindness that reflect His love for His people. For intentional life to devote time and talents to His work.

c. God wants me to reach out to Him in all things – I still struggle with a “me do” approach, calling on God to be my wingman instead of recognizing it is His sky.

 

My Daily Journal:

What am I building?

The key thought that struck me today was “why a tower?”

I mean, if they wanted to build, they could have built anything, right?  Better roads, water systems, schools, hospitals, housing for the poor.  But they chose to build a tower.  Why?

Towers raise us up.  They don’t hold everyone so they naturally elevate some over others.  They allow those in the tower to look down on their kingdoms.  They raise them up out of the muck of everyday life and all the messy people.

They also offer some protection.  it is easier to see attacks coming from a tower and to fire arrows down on your foes.

They are also a means of pride and intimidation.  In battle they would raise the flag high on a pole so all could see and rally around it.  How much more so a tower of bricks.

We still build a lot of towers.  Some would argue that many of our churches and ways of living out our beliefs take the shape of fortresses with high and lofty ideals that we raise up as towers for others to see.  It is understandable, because so much of our faith and views are constantly under attack.

But we don’t need to build towers or strength.  God is our tower.  A mighty fortress is our God (to quote Luther).

What are we called to build?  I think a good answer to that comes from John 1:23 where John the Baptist references Isaiah in his message:  “Make straight the paths for the Lord.”

I am called to be missional.  Where do I need to build more bridges and fewer towers?

BSF Genesis: Week 9, Day 2

Today’s Scriptures

Questions:

3.
in the fertile crescent between the Tigres and Euphretes.
More map links:

4.
a.
11:1 one language 4 make a name for ourselves 4 otherwise we will be scattered

b.
To fill the earth – they didn’t want to spread out

c.
break the 10 commandments, and do not Love the lord your God with… They love themselves, love money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient, ungrateful, unholy…Having a form of godliness but denying its power.

 

My Daily Journal:

Settle.

Where in your life are you trying to settle?  I hear it all the time.  When things calm down then I will…  I’ve just been so busy, but someday…  When I retire, I am going to…

The people at this time decided to settle.  They found a nice place, a lush valley, and they settled.  It was time to enjoy their kingdom.  It was time to build the things they wanted to build to make a name for themselves.  It was time to work on their legacy, as the saying goes.

But God didn’t call them (or us for that matter) to settle.  He called us to take His word to the ends of the earth.  He called us to do His will.  While we have breath left in our body, there is work to be done.

It is not that God is against rest – He created it.  But rest is not a destination.  Rest is part of the rhythm of life.  God has so much more for us – why would we every want to settle for less?

Settle.