Jeremiah 41-42

Jeremiah 41-42

Chapter 41: Ishmael kills Sedaliah

Ishmael (of royal seed) executes his conspiracy against Gedaliah and his companions. Ishmael also attempts to carry away the Jews who were with him as captives to the Ammonites. Johanan recovers them, and proposes fleeing with them into Egypt.

Chapter 42: Jeremiah promises peace if they obey

Johanan and the remnant of the people desire Jeremiah to ask counsel of God what they should do. Jeremiah says they will be safe in Judah, but face destruction in Egypt. Jeremiah expresses his disapproval of their hypocrisy in asking advice they have no intention of following.

2 Chronicles 13-14

2 Chronicles 13-14

Chapter 13: The Lord Kills Jeroboam

In the eighteenth year of King Jeroboam, Abijah became king over Judah. He reigned three years in Jerusalem. A war broke out between Abijah and Jeroboam. Abijah had four hundred thousand choice warriors. Jeroboam also formed eight hundred thousand choice men of valor, to go up into battle against one another.

Abijah stood on Mount Zemaraim, which is the mountains of Ephraim and he said to Jeroboam and all of Israel;

“Ought ye not to know that the Lord God of Israel gave the kingdom over Israel to David forever, even to him and to his sons by a covenant of salt? Yet Jeroboam the son of Nebat, the servant of Solomon the son of David, is risen up, and hath rebelled against his lord. And there are gathered unto him vain men, the children of Belial, and have strengthened themselves against Rehoboam the son of Solomon, when Rehoboam was young and tenderhearted, and could not withstand them. And now ye think to withstand the kingdom of the Lord in the hand of the sons of David; and ye be a great multitude, and there are with you golden calves, which Jeroboam made you for gods. Have ye not cast out the priests of the Lord, the sons of Aaron, and the Levites, and have made you priests after the manner of the nations of other lands? so that whosoever cometh to consecrate himself with a young bullock and seven rams, the same may be a priest of them that are no gods. But as for us, the Lord is our God, and we have not forsaken him; and the priests, which minister unto the Lord, are the sons of Aaron, and the Levites wait upon their business: And they burn unto the Lord every morning and every evening burnt sacrifices and sweet incense: the shewbread also set they in order upon the pure table; and the candlestick of gold with the lamps thereof, to burn every evening: for we keep the charge of the Lord our God; but ye have forsaken him. And, behold, God himself is with us for our captain, and his priests with sounding trumpets to cry alarm against you. O children of Israel, fight ye not against the Lord God of your fathers; for ye shall not prosper.” (2 Chronicles 13: 5-12)

Abijah argued that the dynasty of David is the only legitimate house to rule over the tribes of Israel, including the 10 northern tribes that rebelled under Jeroboam. King Abijah essentially threatens the king and challenges him to fight against the Lord, because that is who they were really fighting against and not against Abijah and his small army.

Jeroboam, however was not going to listen he caused an ambush to happen from both sides of Abijah and his men. Something that was not very honorable since the battle had yet to begin and negotiations were still being considered. So Abijah and his men, upon seeing this ambush dropped to the ground and sounded their trumpets to the heavens crying out to the Lord for deliverance.

The Lord listened to their cry and caused that Jeroboam and his men be struck down, giving Abijah and his men the ability to slay 500,000 thousand of his men, with only 400,000 men on the side of Abijah. Abijah pursued Jeroboam and took many cities from him.

Jeroboam did not recover his strength again, and he later died. Abijah on the other hand grew mighty, had fourteen wives, 22 sons and 16 daughters. The rest of his acts are written in the book of the prophet of Iddo. Yet another lost book of the bible!

Chapter 14: Asa Reigns in Judah

Abijah passes away and is buried in the City of David. Asa, his son reigns in his place and for 10 years of his reign there is peace and quiet in the land. Asa did what was good in the eyes of the Lord and he removed altars of the foreign gods and the temples with whom others had built. Asa commands Judah to seek the Lord and to observe the law and his commandments. Asa builds fortified cities in Judah and he had no wars, because the Lord had given them rest.
Asa tells Judah the importance of building cities with great walls around them, with towers, gates and bars while the land is still under their control, to avoid having it taken back from them. Because of this, they built and prospered. Asa also worked on the army and had three hundred thousand men from Judah, who carried shields, and spears. Benjamin also has two hundred and eighty thousand men who carried shields, and drew bows who were very mighty men of valor.
Not too much time goes by when Zerah the Ethiopian comes out against them with an army of a million me and three hundred chariots. They came to Mareshah. So Asa fought against them, in a battle at the Valley of Zephathah in Mareshah. Asa cried out to the Lord God asking for his help, so that they might rest. Asa praised the Lord.
The Lord heard the cries and struck down the Ethiopians before Asa and all of Judah. The Ethiopaians fled. Asa and his people pursued them to Gerar, where the Ethiopians were overthrown. They were beaten down to the point of no recovery. Asa and his people were able to return victorious and with lots of spoil.

1 Kings 21-22

1 Kings 21-22

Chapter 21: Ahab Kills Naboth for His Vineyard

Ahab goes to Naboth and asks him for his vineyard. He wants his vineyard, because it is close to his house and he wants a garden of herbs close to his house. In trade he promises to give him a vineyard that is better or give him money for the piece of land. However Naboth tells him that he cannot do that, because it is his inheritance and he cannot simply give away his inheritance for something else. Ahab is upset by this and goes to his house and essentially from the text it sounds like he is crying on his bed. (see verse 4).

Jezebel comes into Ahab and asks him why is spirit is drained (I can imagine that his eyes are all puffed up from crying), and Ahab explains the situation. Jezebel then tells Ahab that he is over all of Israel and that this should not stop him from getting what he wants. So Jezebel tells him to eat, drink and be merry and that she would get him his land. So Jezebel writes letters in Ahab’s hand telling the Elders that Naboth had blasphemed God and the king and that he must be stoned to death.

The Elders take heed to the request and send two men, who were children of Belial and they witnessed against him and carried him out of the city to be stoned to death. Jezebel received word of the death and she told Ahab to arise and go take possession of the land that Naboth would not give to him for money or trade and he arose and went down to the vineyard to take possession of it.

The Lord goes to Elijah and tells him what Ahab has done and commands him to go down to the vineyard and meet Ahab, there is commanded to tell Ahab of the curse that will be put on him and his wife for working iniquity and evil before the Lord. Ahab and Jezebel will be killed and eaten by dogs in the same place that Naboth was stoned to death. When Ahab hears about this, he rents him clothes and humbles himself before the Lord. The Lord then tells Elijah that because Ahab humbled himself, that he will not cause anything to happen to him, but to happen to his house later on.

Chapter 22: Micaiah Foretells the Death of Ahab

Three years had passed without any war between Syria and Israel.  In the third year the king of Judah, Jehoshaphat went down to visit the king of Israel. While there, the King of Israel tells Jehosophat that Ramoth in Gilead is theirs, but they are hesitant to take it out of the hands of the King of Syria, so he aks the king of Judah (Jehosophat) for his help. Jehosophat tells him that his people and horses are as his. Kind of like the “mi casa es tu casa” saying. Jehosophat is ok with helping Ahab, but he suggests that they first consult God in the matter. Ahab asks his men and they all tell him to go up to take Ramoth Gilead, because the Lord will deliver it in to his hands. It seems that Jehosophat is not comfortable with that, and asks if there is anyone else that they can ask to get a second opinion. Ahab tells him that there is someone, but he hates him… because the prophet named Micaiah always says evil things of him.

But Ahab calls his officer to brink Micaiah the son of Imlah in unto them. While waiting for him to come, both Ahab and Jehosophat are waiting in the entrance of the city and all around them they hear people telling them to go to Ramoth Gilead and fight!

Micaiah arrives… and is asked whether or not they should go to battle against and take Ramoth Gilead. Micaiah tells him the same thing as the rest of the prophets… to go to Ramoth Gilead, because the Lord will deliver it into his hands. But Ahab aks him if he is telling the truth…

So, Micaiah tells of the true prophecy; “…I saw all of Israel scattered upon the hills, as sheep wthat have not a shepherd: and the Lord said, These have not master let them return every man to his house in peace.” (1 Kings 22:17).

This must of angered Ahab, because he turns to Jehosophat and says; (I am paraphrasing) “See, I told you he never will say anything good about me!” Micaiah explains that the other 400 prophets were decieved by a lying spirit who told them things, so that Ahab would go up to battle, fight and die.

Zedekiah the son of Chenaanah was upset and struck Micaiah on the cheek and Ahab commanded that he was to be put into prison. But as an ultimate call of warning, he tells them that they will understand his prophecy once they are backed up into an inner chamber (cave) to hide themselves.

Ahab goes to battle and disguises himself, but tells Jehosophat to put on his robes. Ahab must have thought that by being disquised he would not be a huge target as the king, thus thwarting the doom that was prophesied of him.

The King of Syria tells all his men to only fight with the king of Israel, once they see Jehosophat with the robes, they immediately pursue after him, but once he screamed and ran, they realized that he was not the king of Israel. However, out of chance a random arrow from a bow struck Ahab inbetween the joints of his armor, and he was propped up in the back of his chariot… dying a brave man to keep the spirits of his men high. When the battle was over, everyone found out that Ahab was dead.

Ahab was brought to Samaria and buried there. When they took the chariot back and washed the blood from it, the dogs licked up his blood.

Jehosophat became king when he was 35 years old. His mother was Azubah and his father was Asa. Jehosophat reigned over Judah with righteousness.

Here are a few of the accomplishments of Jehosophat;

  • He sent teachers of God’s Word out to his entire kingdom (2 Chronicles 17:7-9).
  • He established a permanent military garrison along the northern frontier (2 Chronicles 17:1-2, 12).
  • He trained and equipping a sizeable army (2 Chronicles 17:14-19) that was able to quell a Transjordan invasion (2 Chronicles 20:1-30).
  • He placed Edom under Judean control, controlling an important caravan route to the south (2 Kings 3:8-27; 2 Chronicles 20:36).
  • God blessed his reign so much that the fear of the Lord came upon neighboring nations so that they did not make war against Jehoshaphat (2 Chronicles 17:10).
  • Jehoshaphat was also an able administrator, implementing judicial reforms (2 Chronicles 19:5-11) and religious reforms (2 Chronicles 17:3-9).
  • Jehoshaphat was also the king connected to the famous incident when the army of Judah saw a great victory won as the Levites led the battle with praise (2 Chronicles 20:15-23).

 

Ahaziah the son of Ahab became king over Israel in Samaria in the 17th years of the reign of Jehosophat in Judah. Ahaziah reigned for two years and did much evil in the sight of the Lord. He served Baal and worshiped him, provoking God to anger.

Judges 15-16

Judges 15-16

Chapter 15: Samson Slays 1,000 Men

Samson decides to go back and visit his wife, who at this point had been given to someone else. But apparently no one told Samson this, because he seems to be out of the loop on this one. He tries to go into her room to see her, but her father won’t let him in; basically saying he thought Samson hated her, so he gave his daughter to someone else to marry.

The father suggests that Samson take his younger daughter to marry and even tells Samson that she is much more attractive than her sister. But Samson does not want to marry this woman and this is when I like to say that the “hulk” brewing inside of Samson begins…

Samson tells him that he is going to do the Philistines a “displeasure” see verse 3.  Samson gathers 300 foxes and attaches torches to their tails. He then lights up the torches and lets the foxes loose to run through the fields… ultimately burning the grain, olives and their vineyards.

The Philistines ponder over who could have torched their fields and when they find out that it was Samson and more specifically it was Samson angry over his wife, they kill Samson’s wife and father in-law by burning them. But this only upsets and angers Samson even more, so he slaughters many Philistines before returning to Israel.

Samson runs off and the Philistines catch up to him in Judah, where the Philistines make the Israelites hand him over, so they do and they bind Samson with ropes and bring him directly to the Philistines. As he approaches he has another “hulk” moment and rips off the ropes and grabs a nearby donkey jawbone and strikes down 1,000 Philistines with it. After doing his killing the “hulk” (Samson) becomes very thirsty and pleads with the Lord for water.  God causes a spring to form and he is able to drink. We also learn at the end of the chapter that Samson ruled over Israel for twenty years.

Chapter 16: Samson Kills 3,000 and Himself

Samson visits a prostitute named Delilah in Gaza. When people hear that Samson is there, they lie around the city in wait for him to come out, thinking that he would come out at dawn so they could kill him. Well Samson gets up in the middle of the night and tears down the posts and gate of the city and carries them off.

Samson falls in love with Delilah and the Philistines decide to use her to gain access to knowledge of Samson. Delilah was told that if she got information on the weak points of Samson that each of the rulers of the land would give her 13 kilograms of silver which was a “lot of money”.

Samson also tells Delilah that if he is tied up with seven fresh bowstrings that once they dry he will become as weak as anyone else. Delilah gets upset that Samson lied to her after he breaks free so easily that it was as if he had only a thin piece of thread binding him.

Delilah demands to know the truth and he tells her another fake story, that seven fresh ropes will bind him, but she calls (presumably while he is sleeping) out saying that the Philistines are coming and again he snaps it, very easily.

A third time, Samson, tells Delilah that if his hair is woven into the fabric on a loom and tightened with a pin that he won’t be able to break it. Same thing, he breaks it! So Delilah tells Samson that he must not love her, if he cannot confide in her… so Samson finally tells the truth about his hair.

No razor has been used on his head, because he was a Nazirite set apart by God from birth. If his head was shaved he would lose all his power., and become as weak as any other man. Delilah then sends the word to the Philistines, they show up, give Delilah her silver and shave the seven braids of Samsons head. Samson wakes up and without his power is captured by the Philistines, who remove his eyes and throw him in prison.

In prison, the hair on Samson’s head began to grow again. The Philistines gather together in the temple of their god Dagon to thank him for the capture of Samson. The gathering is about 3,000 men. To celebrate further they take Samson out of prison so he can be “entertainment” to them. Because he has no eyes, he is led out by a servant. He asks the servant to take him to the pillars of the building so he can rest upon them. Samson then prays to God to give him one more boost of power, so that he can get revenge for the gouging out of his eyes. The Lord listens and Samson pushes against two pillars, which cause the temple to collapse, killing not only himself but all of the Philistines inside. Samson’s family comes to take his body to bury in their father’s tomb. All in all, Samson ruled Israel for twenty years as a judge and in death killed more Philistines than in his life.

Exodus 1-3

Exodus 1-3

Chapter 1: Pharaoh Seeks to Destroy all Males

The children of Jacob/Israel dwell in the land of Egypt; Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah, Issachar, Zebulun, Benjamin, Dan, Naphtali, Gad, Asher and Joseph. All of the souls that came from Jacob were seventy that were in Egypt.

But the children of Israel multiply and become a mighty people. The king of Egypt (after Pharaoh) did not know Joseph and therefore feared the children of Israel. The King of Egypt called for “taskmasters” to inflict on them burdens that they might become a weak people. With this “slave” labor the King of Egypt builds two treasure cities; Pithom and Raamses. As the king of Egypt inflicted more and more on the children of Egypt, the mightier they became!

The king of Egypt calls the midwives to come and tells them to kill all males that are born unto the Hebrews and only let live the females. The midwives (fearing God) refuse to do it and anger the king of Egypt. The king then calls them for a second time and demands that all male babies that are born to be thrown into the river, saving only the female babies.

Chapter 2: The Birth of Moses

There was a man who came from Levi, who married one of the daughters of Levi. They get married and have a child; a son. Because of the new laws in the land of Egypt she fears that her baby boy will be murdered, so she hides him for 3 months. But after time, she realizes that she cannot continue to hide this baby boy for long. So she takes him to the river and puts him in an “ark”, basically a little basket made of bulrushes that would float down the river.

The baby boy is found a little while later by the daughter of Pharaoh, who looks upon the boy with compassion and sends him away to be nursed by another Hebrew woman. When the boy is older, he is given to Pharaoh’s daughter to be her son. Pharaoh’s daughter calls her new son; Moses.

Moses grows up and sees the mistreatment of his brothers, the Hebrews. One day he witnesses an Egyptian “smiting” or hitting a Hebrew and decides this is unacceptable. So when he thinks no one is looking, he kills the Egyptian and hides “buries” him in the sand.

The next day he goes out and one of the Hebrews asks him why he thinks he could be a prince and judge over them, and asks Moses if he is going to kill him as well. Moses at this point gets very nervous because he thought no one had seen him killing the Egyptian. So Moses flees to the land of Midian. This was a smart move on the part of Moses because after Pharaoh hears about what Moses did, he seeks to slay Moses.

Moses, while dwelling at a well in the land of Midian meets the seven daughters of the priest of Midian. The priest invites Moses into his house and gives Zipporah, one of his daughters to marry Moses. Zipporah bares a child to Moses and names the child Gershom.

During this time the king of Egypt dies and the childen of Israel rejoice, because they were no longer in bondage. The Lord remembers his promise that he had made unto Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and has respect unto the children of Israel, the Hebrews.

Chapter 3: The Lord Appears unto Moses

Moses was watching over the flock of Jethro (who was his father-in-law). He led the flock to the backside of the desert and came unto the mountain of God, “Horeb”.

There, an angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a flame of fire, that came from a bush. When Moses saw this, he stopped to see why the bush was not on fire. When he did this, God called out to him and tells him that he needs to go down to Egypt and bring his people out of bondage.

Moses agrees, but asks God what he should say when the Hebrews ask who sent him. God responds and tells Moses to tell them, that “I AM” sent him.

Who is “I AM”? Some people say that this is God or “Heavenly Father”, but in the Spanish scriptures (La Reina Valera) where it says “…The Lord God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob…” (Genesis 3:15) – the Spanish version says “Jehovah” instead of “The Lord God”.

So who is Jehovah? – Well if we read WAY AHEAD in the Bible in the New Testament- John 8:58; “Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.” . So we learn that Jehovah is Jesus Christ.

God commands Moses to travel to Egypt and speak with the Elders of Israel. He tells Moses that they will go with him to Pharaoh and command that he let the people go. But God tells him that surely Pharaoh will not let them go so he will have to stretch forth his hand and make it happen.