Posts Tagged ‘Samaria’


Genesis 24:2-4,6-9,12-14 Abraham said to his servant, the oldest of his household, who had charge of all that he owned, “Please place your hand under my thigh, and I will make you swear by the LORD, the God of heaven and the God of earth, that you shall not take a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites, among whom I live, but you will go to my country and to my relatives, and take a wife for my son Isaac”… Then Abraham said to him, “Beware that you do not take my son back there! “The LORD, the God of heaven, who took me from my father’s house and from the land of my birth, and who spoke to me and who swore to me, saying, ‘To your descendants I will give this land,’ He will send His angel before you, and you will take a wife for my son from there. “But if the woman is not willing to follow you, then you will be free from this my oath; only do not take my son back there.” So the servant placed his hand under the thigh of Abraham his master, and swore to him concerning this matter… He said, “O LORD, the God of my master Abraham, please grant me success today, and show lovingkindness to my master Abraham. “Behold, I am standing by the spring, and the daughters of the men of the city are coming out to draw water; now may it be that the girl to whom I say, ‘Please let down your jar so that I may drink,’ and who answers, ‘Drink, and I will water your camels also’—may she be the one whom You have appointed for Your servant Isaac; and by this I will know that You have shown lovingkindness to my master.”

The culture of the times of Abraham might seem so bizarre to us today but it was the culture of the land and we therefore need to appreciate it and understand what God is speaking to us through it.

Marriage was not just a relationship between a man and woman but between two families and there was much at play including establishing credentials, sharing wealth, rightful celebrations, etc.

The head servant of Abraham’s household was more like the estate manager who oversaw everything Abraham owned and he was the senior-most staff in any household, much like Daniel was to become.

The question I had was why did the head servant ask God to reveal the right woman because of watering the camels and him? (more…)

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Acts 8:5-8, 26-27, 38b-40
Philip went down to a city in Samaria and proclaimed the Christ there. When the crowds heard Philip and saw the miraculous signs he did, they all paid close attention to what he said. With shrieks, evil spirits came out of many, and many paralytics and cripples were healed. So there was great joy in that city…Now an angel of the Lord said to Philip, “Go south to the road—the desert road—that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza.” So he started out, and on his way he met an Ethiopian eunuch, an important official in charge of all the treasury of Candace, queen of the Ethiopians…Then both Philip and the eunuch went down into the water and Philip baptized him. When they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord suddenly took Philip away, and the eunuch did not see him again, but went on his way rejoicing. Philip, however, appeared at Azotus and traveled about, preaching the gospel in all the towns until he reached Caesarea.

The book of Acts gives us a sense of how the Church exploded after Jesus’ resurrection. Nothing was the same and followers of Christ were doing things that were not of them. Philip seems to be the man of action mentioned throughout this chapter and he was involved in some real mystifying acts like healing people with evil spirits inside of them, healing cripples and paralytics and even disappearing after baptizing the Ethiopian eunuch who accepted Christ. What is God speaking to us today through this passage?

For many weeks, a dear friend of mine has been plagued by a rasping cough. It’s trying and hard when the medication he has been taking has had no effect and his faith is being challenged. It is at times such as these when one doubts why the Lord permits suffering in the lives of his cherished and those living far from God seem to be in bliss. The reality is that like Philip, we are called to serve God regardless of when and where and we should consider it a privilege to serve for the salvation we have received from the Lord. Philip was not acting in his strength but through the Holy Spirit at work in him. The Lord works in mysterious ways when we submit to his will and we need to pray for humble hearts that we might serve faithfully and God is glorified through our lives.

In His Loving Service,
Vineet

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Acts 1:7-8
He said to them: “It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”

After covering 89 chapters in the 1st 4 books of the New Testament, we now start our journey into the book of Acts which was written by Luke. Jesus visited the disciples several times after his death and the disciples were trying to understand what Jesus’ plan was in terms of restoring Israel. Jesus however helped them see that he was not there to free them from the Roman oppression, rather, he was there to give them freedom from sin. Also, he was there to tell them what the future held in their calling as dicisples.

When we accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, the Holy Spirit enters us and directs our lives. The direction is different for each person and the course we take depends on our obedience. However, the purpose is always the same and that is we are all called as a new creation in Christ to witness about what the Lord has done for us to everyone around us, regardless of geography. We are called to be lighthouses in this dark world where our enemy is not fellow humans but the devil himself and the one solace we have is that this battle was won 2,000 years ago when Jesus rose from the dead and defeated Satan and sin.

In His Loving Service,
Vineet

PS: Sign up for daily devotionals by clicking the email subscription icon at the top right of this page or by visiting this group. Also, share this with your friends and family who need some encouragement and direction in their lives.