If the Plan is of Man, Then it Will Fail

Daily Scripture readings for June, reading set #8:

Genesis, chapters 21-23
Psalm, chapter 8
Matthew 4:12-17
Acts 5:1-16

Abraham’s explanation to his son in Genesis 22:8 that “the Lord will provide for himself a lamb for the burnt offering” is such an amazing parallel to Paul’s description of God in Romans 3 as both “just and the justifier.”  Another interesting moment in this section of Genesis is Ishmael’s near death in chapter 21, and the way God waits until the last minute to speak to Hagar. Verse 19 says that “God opened her eyes, and she saw a well of water.” Was the well there the whole time and Hagar was just couldn’t see it, or is it that she was prevented from seeing it?

Also, I noticed today that Jesus preaches the EXACT same message, word for word, in Matthew 4:17 that John the Baptist preached in Matthew 3:2.

There are a lot of things to say about the Ananias and Sapphira story in Acts 5, but the thing that’s most interesting to me right now is the new covenant era in which this account takes place. The Old Testament has moments where someone is struck dead for their actions, but I’ve always thought of that as something that happened “under law” and not “under grace.” Anybody have any thoughts on that?

I’m still catching up on the calendar and needing to post two reading segments per day…

Reading set #9 for June:

Genesis, chapter 24
Psalm, chapter 9
Matthew 4:18-25
Acts 5:17-42

Genesis 24 is a somewhat boring chapter because it’s very repetitive, but it struck me that the reason it’s boring is because the servant describes his whole situation to Laban exactly the way the author of Genesis (Moses, traditionally) writes it.

In Psalm 9, it’s worth noting that David declares that the wicked “are snared in the work of THEIR OWN hands” (vs 16).

Lastly, the Apostles’ trial before the Jewish high priest and council in Acts 5 has a ton of interesting stuff in it.  First of all, Gamaliel’s warning to the council is so clear in it’s declaration that God’s purposes WILL be accomplished:  “If this plan is of man, then it will fail, but if it is of God then you will not be able to overthrow them” (vs 39). Then, the Apostles react to their beating and imprisonment by  “REJOICING that they were counted worthy to suffer dishonor for the name” (vs 41).

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