Home > Horner Bible Reading Plan > Highlights from Bible Readings: Scripture Thoughts for Today

Highlights from Bible Readings: Scripture Thoughts for Today

Lately my Bible readings (modified Horner Bible Reading System) have included some great readings in Genesis (list 2), Ruth and 1 Samuel (list 6), Jeremiah (list 7), and Romans (list 3).  Now for some highlights:

The despair of people, just before God works great things in their lives:  Naomi (Ruth 1:20-21), and Jacob (Genesis 42:36).

Ruth and Genesis also nicely fit together in another interesting way, as in the day which included both Ruth 4 and Genesis 38.  Genesis 38 of course tells the story of Judah and Tamar, ending with Tamar’s birth to twins, one of whom is Perez.  Ruth 4, verse 12 and again in verses 18-22, again mentions Perez and then completes the lineage from Perez (Genesis 38) to King David.

Speaking of Ruth, Thomas Constable has a good four part series through this interesting book.   I recently listened to the first part, a good introduction to the characters and the story.

Stones as Witnesses

In the Pentateuch and history lists I’ve come across many incidents of stones setup as memorials or witnesses — for agreements between people, as well as witnesses between man and God — such as in Jacob’s journeys in Genesis: Genesis 31:45-53, and again in Genesis 35:14.  Early in 1 Samuel, chapters 6 and 7 also feature two such incidents of stones used as witnesses:  1 Samuel 6:18, after the Philistines returned the ark to Israel, “The large rock, on which they set the ark of the LORD, is a witness to this day in the field of Joshua of Beth Shemesh.”  Then 1 Samuel 7 has Samuel setting up a stone (1 Samuel 7:12), called Ebenezer, after a great victory over the Philistines.  I also recall the “stone as witness” theme from recent reading through Joshua (Joshua 24:2-27).  The people saw rocks as something more permanent than themselves, part of God’s creation that was always there, like the mountains and hills, to “witness” in the future.  Even when men had forgotten the thing witnessed, those rocks were still there.

So during these readings, when Romans 9:32-33 also refers to stones, as in “a stumbling stone,” the “rock of offense” that Paul quotes from Isaiah 28, in the context of Israel’s rejection of their Messiah, the imagery of a stone has that much more meaning and depth.  Beyond the basic understanding that stones can get in our way and trip us up, lies the rich history and meaning that the people of Israel associated with stones, straight from their own history, from their own prophets and leaders, even back to Jacob–Israel himself.

Benjamin — both the person and his descendants — also has received frequent mention.  Today’s readings, for example, featured Benjamin himself (Genesis 45), then Romans 11:1 (Paul “an Israelite myself, a descendant of Abraham, from the tribe of Benjamin”), then 1 Samuel 9 (introduction to Saul the soon-to-be king), and again in Jeremiah 37:12 — “Jeremiah started to leave the city to go to the territory of Benjamin to get his share of the property among the people there.”  Jeremiah chapters 37 and 38 also frequently mention the “Benjamin Gate” in Jerusalem.

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