Monday, September 5, 2022

60IN60 Day 1 - Mon Sept 5

It's Day 1 and we're in Matthew 1.

An encouragement as you read the Bible today: in Acts 17:11, it tells of some Christians in Berea who "received the Word with great eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see whether [what we taught was Biblical]." Let's be like them. 

Where God Spoke To Me:
- Verse 18 - It's striking to me that the way in which the birth came about probably led to the damaging of Mary's reputation.  People could count months and must have presumed that the quick marriage was the result of an unexpected pregnancy.

- Verses 1-17 - The genealogy makes for boring reading, but it's important to Matthew to establish the heritage of the Messiah.

If you want to read the chapter online, here's a link.

If you have a question or comment, email me at

Your Comments and Questions:
- "Luke 10:18 He replied, 'I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven.' You said Satan may have been in heaven complaining to God about what Jesus was doing.  God gave no ground.  So, Satan came back to Earth. (Fell to Earth defeated) In my opinion this is incorrect.  Satan has not yet been defeated this happens in Revelation.  It's speculation that Satan was there complaining. I need some clarification on this. Thanks." - Good question. Let me clarify what I mean and don't mean. First, one of the main names for Satan is "Diabolos" (Revelation 12:9). This means the "Accuser" or the "Slanderer." One of Satan's main actions against us is to make accusations about us before the Father. Obviously, the most prominent example of this happening is in Job 1:6-12 and Job 2:1-10. (Side note: this is really a remarkable idea because it means that in these interactions God is putting His reputation in our hands!) The Job passage makes it clear that God sets strict limits to what Satan is permitted to do, but nonetheless we see the reality that Satan comes into God's presence to accuse God's followers. Second, this happens in heaven (again, see Job's passages - "before the Lord"). This is important for the "fall like lightning from heaven" idea in Luke 10. Third (and this is important because I think this is where the misunderstanding happened), when I say that Satan "fell to earth defeated" I do not mean that Satan was defeated in the "final judgment/end of days/in hell forever" sense. You're right - that is in the future and doesn't happen until we get into the events of Revelation. What I mean is that Satan felt defeated in what he hoped to accomplish that day. He was complaining and accusing (in what exact ways we do not know) about the sending out of the 70 on this mission trip (Luke 10:1). The 70 come back victorious and joyful (Luke 10:17). Perhaps Satan complained that they had been given authority over his demons (Luke 10:17). He was defeated (going back to my original comments) in the sense that God did not say, "Ok, I'll stop Jesus' disciples from having authority over your demons." God gave no ground ("This is the new way things are going to work with Jesus' followers - get used to it, Satan."). In that sense, he came back to earth defeated in the battle he'd tried to win that day with his accusations. (One final note: as I said in my original post, the meaning of this passage is not certain, so this is my best interpretation. There are some, for instance, that think the "lightning" imagery is merely poetic and it just means, "I saw Satan being defeated today." I think the argument I shared is a stronger possibility, but we can't be dogmatic because it is somewhat obscure.)
- "Psalm 5:2 - sometimes we don't know what to pray for or what to do, we can only cry 'Help!'."
- "Psalm 5:10  - I don't know that I've ever prayed 'make them pay!' or 'have them fall !'.  Seems unloving to pray that on someone. But do we not want evil and our enemies to be brought down ?  Is this what it means to come boldly before the throne of grace (Hebrews 4:16)?" - Two thoughts. First, we do need to remember that the Psalms are expressions of the writers' honest emotions. Some of it includes expressions of anger or depression that are honest life but might not measure up to our best aspirations of Christlikeness. They are, in one sense, more like a testimony in church where we admit that we struggled with anger in a particular situation even though we shouldn't have felt that way, but that God saw us through in spite of our weaknesses. Second, while I do think we are to pray for a change of heart for our enemies, there can at the same time be a comfort for us in the confidence that evil will not be tolerated forever and that unrepentant sin will be punished.

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