In Today's Scripture Reading:
Descendants of David, Solomon, Judah, Simeon, Reuben, Gad and Manasseh
God compared the small tribe of Simeon that chose to live in the promised land to the much larger tribe of Reuben that chose not to settle in the promised land. Of the sons of Simeon, five hundred men, went to Mount Seir. . . . And they smote (destroyed) the rest of the Amalekites that were escaped, and dwelt there unto this day (I Chronicles 4:42-43). What a contrast this is to the more powerful sons of Reuben. . . . They transgressed against the God of their fathers, and went a whoring (played the harlot) after the gods of the people of the land, whom God destroyed before them. And the God of Israel stirred up the . . . king of Assyria, and he carried them away, even the Reubenites . . . and brought them unto Halah . . . and to the river Gozan, unto this day (5:1,25-26).
The Reubenites chose to live in the fertile lands outside the promised land on the eastern side of the Jordan River, even though it was far from the Tabernacle, which was the only place where God had chosen for people to worship Him (Numbers 32). They chose what they believed would bring them greater material success rather than spiritual blessings, direction and protection.
Jacob's prophecy regarding Reuben truly came to pass. By birthright, the descendants of the firstborn son should have had preeminence over all the other tribes. But Jacob had prophesied: Reuben, thou art . . . the excellency of power: Unstable as water, thou shalt not excel; because thou wentest up to thy father's bed; then defiledst thou it (Genesis 49:3-4). Water is a good illustration, because it naturally flows to the lowest possible level. Water is also unstable in that it can be driven by the winds as well as evaporate with the heat. The Reubenites are an example of some today who become so involved in the things of the world that little time is left for serving the Lord and for reading His Word. They too consider the plan of God for their lives less important than satisfying personal ambitions and pleasures. We need not fear that we are not talented enough, strong enough, or good enough. Everything God wants us to be or to do He makes possible. O Lord, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps (Jeremiah 10:23).
Through the genealogy of David (I Chronicles 3:1-24). Christ the Son of God was also called the Son of David. The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the Son of David (Matthew 1:1; Luke 3:23-38; Romans 1:3).
3:9 concubines =b> slave women that legally became secondary wives; 4:10 coast =b> border ; 4:40 fat =b> rich, good; 5:11 over against =b> across from.
Pray for The English International Shortwave Radio Broadcast in honor of Rick Hash Government Officials: Gov. Dave Heineman (NE) and Rep. Frank LoBiondo (NJ) Country: Saudi Arabia (20.9 million) on the Arabian Peninsula in southwestern Asia Major language: Arabic Christian worship services for foreign personnel are tolerated, but those who seek to convert Muslims to Christianity face persecution 86% Sunni (Wahabi) Muslim; 10% Shi'ite Muslim; 1% Ismaili Muslim; 3% Others (including 600,000 Christians and some Hindus and Buddhists) Prayer Suggestion: Lift up prayers of praise and thanksgiving to God even in times of adversity (Acts 16:22-25).
Optional Reading: Romans 15
Memory Verse for the Week: Psalms 9:1