January 01

Read Genesis 1 -- 3

In Today's Reading:

You will be thrilled as you read these powerful three chapters today, discovering And God said . . . And God saw . . . And God made; clearly describing creation -- how the universe, life, man, death, marriage and sin all began -- you will learn that things were good (2:12) -- and you will meet Adam, a figure of him that was to come (Romans 5:14), who entered the world through a special act of God as a sinless man. But, in chapter 3 we are introduced to Satan, the instigator of all evil -- the one responsible for our present sorrows, suffering, and sin. Discover the three aspects of the first sin and its results.

Verse for Today:

Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, Has God said, You shall not eat of every tree of the garden? (Genesis 3:1).

Highlights:

Creation of all things; creation of Adam and Eve; temptation by Satan; Adam and Eve rebel against God and forfeit the Garden of Eden.

God placed Adam and Eve in a perfect environment and provided for all their needs. He said they could eat from all the trees but one: You shall not eat of it . . . lest you die (Genesis 3:3). Eating the fruit from this one tree was forbidden in order to test their loyalty and obedience to Him.

Satan sought to overthrow God's authority over the human race. His chief purpose was to separate man from his Creator and to cause him to put his trust in self rather than in God.

Satan first caused Eve to question the Word of God, asking: Has God said, you shall not eat of every tree of the Garden? . . . God knows that in the day You eat (the fruit from this tree), then your eyes shall be opened, and you shall be as gods, knowing (what is) good and (what is) evil (3:1,5). Satan implied that God was holding back something good from them, thereby causing them to doubt that He really cared for their best interest.

Once Eve questioned the goodness of God in providing what was best for her, Satan had won a major victory. His next move was to undermine her reliance upon the truth of God's Word by contradicting it: You shall not surely die (3:4). Questioning the truthfulness of God leads to contradicting His Word. Satan then appealed to Eve's natural desires and used her to get Adam to sin (3:5-6).

Satan caused both Adam and Eve to ignore the Word of God and to believe that they were capable of deciding what was best for themselves. Everyone who refuses to read the Bible is similarly deceived.

When Adam and Eve chose to disobey God, sin entered the world. With sin came all the evil, misery, suffering, sorrow, and deception that is in the world today. As a result of sin, mankind became self-seeking and self-willed. Eventually, God saw that the wickedness of man was great . . . and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually (6:5).

It is our responsibility to serve, obey, and glorify our Creator. But, like Adam and Eve, many people refuse to accept the fact that we are not independent from our Creator. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to good works, which God has before ordained that we should walk in them (Ephesians 2:10). We can and should, for our best interest, choose to read the Bible in order to be obedient to the Word of God. Reading all that God has revealed in the Bible is the only safeguard against making wrong decisions.

When Adam sinned, he experienced spiritual (death) and a sinful nature. Separation from God and physical death was inevitable to the human race. By one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned (Romans 5:12).

A Thought from Proverbs: The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction (1:7).

Christ Revealed:

As Creator (Genesis 1:1). See John 1:1-4; Colossians 1:15-17; Hebrews 11:3. As the seed of woman (Genesis 3:15). See Isaiah 7:14; 9:6-7; Galatians 4:4.

Word Studies:

1:29 meat = food; 2:3 sanctified it = set it apart for God; 2:10 four heads = four rivers; 2:14 Hiddekel = Tigris; 3:1 subtil = cunning, shrewd; 3:13 beguiled = deceived; 3:15 it = her seed (Jesus Christ); bruise = greatly injure or wound.

Prayer Needs:

Government Officials: Sen. Jon Corzine (NJ), Rep. Martin Frost (TX), Sen. Ernest Hollings (SC), Gov. Gary Johnson (NM), Gov. Tony Knowles (AK), and Rep. Robert Menendez (NJ) · Pray for one more person to read through the Bible · Country: Mexico (100 million) in North America · Major language: Spanish · Religious freedom · 88% Roman Catholic; 4% Protestant; .1% Eastern Orthodox · Prayer Suggestion: The Lord is a shield for you in times of trouble (Psalms 3:1-3).

Optional Reading: Matthew 1

NOTE: Bible Pathway covers the Old Testament with devotional and commentary insights over a nine-month period, January through September. Each day during these months, an optional reading of one chapter a day from the New Testament will also be listed. The October, November, and December issues will provide a daily commentary on the New Testament readings. Thus, the reader goes through the New Testament twice each year using the Bible Pathway plan.

Memory Verse for the Week: Matthew 1:23