16 weeks deep in this Bible 365 challenge! Still learning new things and growing stronger in my faith and understanding of the word. In week 16, we finished up the book of Nehemiah. The Israelites have decided to once get on board with God's commandments. So, they rebuilt the cities and reaffirmed the covenant that God made with Abraham.
They willingly confessed and finally admitted that they strayed from God's will on purpose. "And because of all this, we make a sure covenant and write it; our leaders, our Levites, and our priests seal it" (Nehemiah 9:38). We'll see if they actually uphold the covenant this time around as we continue to read on.
Now, the book Esther is very much like a crime thriller. Esther becomes queen after winning a beauty pageant. The only problem is that Esther, whose real name was Hadassah, is a Jew and Haman, her husband's right hand man, didn't like Jews. Thinking Haman is trustworthy, King Ahasuerus gives him his signet ring. Well, Haman sends out a decree that says "to destroy, to kill, and to annihilate all the Jews, both young and old, little children and women, in one day, on the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, which is the month of Adar, and to plunder their possessions" (Esther 3:13).
Of course, Esther agrees to help save the Jews and herself by going to her husband to ask for mercy. So, she invites him and Haman to dinner and tells him that she heard that all Jews are to be killed and destroyed. This is news to her husband since he wasn't the one who made the decree. Esther spills the beans about Haman misusing the signet ring to get his way (Esther 7).
And King Ahasuerus orders Haman to be hanged and the Jews and Esther are saved! You just don't mess with a man's family. And we've all head of the story of Job. God tells Satan that to test Job because he is "a blameless and upright man, one fears God and shuns evil" (Job 1:8). So, in one day Job loses everything-his children, possessions and health.
But through it all he remains faithful. His friends try to get him to curse God, but Job doesn't. He knows that everything happened for a reason and that God will restore everything that was taken in due time. Now how many of us are this faithful? I'm telling you it's my goal to obtain the faith and spiritual strength of Job.
What would you do if you lost everything and everyone you loved and held dear in one day?
Week 17 Readings
4/22: Job 15-21
4/23: Job 22-31
4/24: Job 32-35
4/25: Job 36-38
4/26: Job 39-42
4/27: Psalms 1-4
4/28: Psalms 5-8