Tuesday, February 6

crossflowersGenesis 27:41- 28:9

41 Now Esau hated Jacob because of the blessing with which his father had blessed him, and Esau said to himself, “The days of mourning for my father are approaching; then I will kill my brother Jacob.” 42 But the words of Esau her older son were told to Rebekah. So she sent and called Jacob her younger son and said to him, “Behold, your brother Esau comforts himself about you by planning to kill you. 43 Now therefore, my son, obey my voice. Arise, flee to Laban my brother in Haran 44 and stay with him a while, until your brother’s fury turns away— 45 until your brother’s anger turns away from you, and he forgets what you have done to him. Then I will send and bring you from there. Why should I be bereft of you both in one day?”

46 Then Rebekah said to Isaac, “I loathe my life because of the Hittite women. If Jacob marries one of the Hittite women like these, one of the women of the land, what good will my life be to me?”

 

Jacob Sent to Laban

28 Then Isaac called Jacob and blessed him and directed him, “You must not take a wife from the Canaanite women. 2 Arise, go to Paddan-aram to the house of Bethuel your mother’s father, and take as your wife from there one of the daughters of Laban your mother’s brother. 3 God Almighty bless you and make you fruitful and multiply you, that you may become a company of peoples. 4 May he give the blessing of Abraham to you and to your offspring with you, that you may take possession of the land of your sojournings that God gave to Abraham!” 5 Thus Isaac sent Jacob away. And he went to Paddan-aram, to Laban, the son of Bethuel the Aramean, the brother of Rebekah, Jacob’s and Esau’s mother.

Esau Marries an Ishmaelite

6 Now Esau saw that Isaac had blessed Jacob and sent him away to Paddan-aram to take a wife from there, and that as he blessed him he directed him, “You must not take a wife from the Canaanite women,” 7 and that Jacob had obeyed his father and his mother and gone to Paddan-aram. 8 So when Esau saw that the Canaanite women did not please Isaac his father, 9 Esau went to Ishmael and took as his wife, besides the wives he had, Mahalath the daughter of Ishmael, Abraham’s son, the sister of Nebaioth.

 

Psalm 35

1  Contend, O Lord, with those who contend with me; fight against those who fight against me! 2  Take hold of shield and buckler and rise for my help! 3 Draw the spear and javelin against my pursuers! Say to my soul, “I am your salvation!” 4 Let them be put to shame and dishonor who seek after my life! Let them be turned back and disappointed who devise evil against me! 5  Let them be like chaff before the wind, with the angel of the Lord driving them away! 6  Let their way be dark and slippery, with the angel of the Lord pursuing them! 7  For without cause they hid their net for me; without cause they dug a pit for my life. 8  Let destruction come upon him when he does not know it! And let the net that he hid ensnare him; let him fall into it—to his destruction! 9  Then my soul will rejoice in the Lord, exulting in his salvation. 10  All my bones shall say, “O Lord, who is like you, delivering the poor from him who is too strong for him, the poor and needy from him who robs him?” 11 Malicious witnesses rise up; they ask me of things that I do not know. 12  They repay me evil for good; my soul is bereft. 13  But I, when they were sick— I wore sackcloth; I afflicted myself with fasting; I prayed with head bowed on my chest. 14 I went about as though I grieved for my friend or my brother; as one who laments his mother, I bowed down in mourning. 15  But at my stumbling they rejoiced and gathered; they gathered together against me; wretches whom I did not know tore at me without ceasing; 16  like profane mockers at a feast, they gnash at me with their teeth. 17  How long, O Lord, will you look on? Rescue me from their destruction, my precious life from the lions! 18  I will thank you in the great congregation; in the mighty throng I will praise you. 19 Let not those rejoice over me who are wrongfully my foes, and let not those wink the eye who hate me without cause. 20  For they do not speak peace, but against those who are quiet in the land they devise words of deceit. 21  They open wide their mouths against me; they say, “Aha, Aha! Our eyes have seen it!” 22 You have seen, O Lord; be not silent! O Lord, be not far from me! 23  Awake and rouse yourself for my vindication, for my cause, my God and my Lord! 24 Vindicate me, O Lord, my God, according to your righteousness, and let them not rejoice over me! 25  Let them not say in their hearts, “Aha, our heart’s desire!” Let them not say, “We have swallowed him up.” 26  Let them be put to shame and disappointed altogether who rejoice at my calamity! Let them be clothed with shame and dishonor who magnify themselves against me! 27  Let those who delight in my righteousness shout for joy and be glad and say evermore, “Great is the Lord who delights in the welfare of his servant!” 28  Then my tongue shall tell of your righteousness and of your praise all the day long.

Matthew 17:22-18:6

22 As they were gathering in Galilee, Jesus said to them, “The Son of Man is about to be delivered into the hands of men, 23 and they will kill him, and he will be raised on the third day.” And they were greatly distressed.

The Temple Tax
24 When they came to Capernaum, the collectors of the two-drachma tax went up to Peter and said,“Does your teacher not pay the tax?” 25 He said, “Yes.” And when he came into the house, Jesus spoke to him first, saying, “What do you think, Simon? From whom do kings of the earth take toll or tax? From their sons or from others?” 26 And when he said, “From others,” Jesus said to him, “Then the sons are free. 27 However, not to give offense to them, go to the sea and cast a hook and take the first fish that comes up, and when you open its mouth you will find a shekel. Take that and give it to them for me and for yourself.”

 

Who Is the Greatest?
18 At that time the disciples came to Jesus, saying, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” 2 And calling to him a child, he put him in the midst of them 3 and said, Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. 4 Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven“Whoever receives one such child in my name receives me, 6 but whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a great millstone fastened around his neck and to be drowned in the depth of the sea.

Questions to Ponder:

The Lord said that it is inevitable that stumbling blocks will come. Esau came upon a stumbling block and then bore a grudge against Jacob. In his anger he went to the family of Ishmael, Abraham’s son through Hagar, and took a wife. This was against the ways of God’s people – to marry outside of the line of Isaac. It caused Rebekkah great heartache to see Esau marry a Canaanite. She had to deal with that stumbling block. 

How do you respond to stumbling blocks?
Do you get angry and try to get revenge?

We must be always mindful of the Lord’s mission to save the lost. Do you focus on God’s interests or do you focus on your own?

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