Reminder: It only takes on average 15 minutes to read through each daily Bible reading in the One Year Bible.
OLD TESTAMENT READING: Genesis 1:1-2:25
Today we start reading Genesis, the Book of Beginnings.
In this book we have an account of the origin of man, marriage, family, human disobedience, murder and the development of government and culture. We discover how God and man are intimately related. We see the inherent dignity in mankind- God made him in His image and after His likeness. We recognize the equal status of the sexes, in that “in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them” (Gen 1:27).
Although Genesis is not written as a science textbook, the book contains the foundational truths of theology (the science of God), cosmology (the science of the cosmos), anthropology (the science of humankind), sociology (the science of society, hamartiology (the science of sin), and soteriology (the science of salvation).
Jesus referred to the Genesis account as being the authoritative Word of God (Matthew 19:4-6). So should we.
We start with a declaration of our origin- We are introduced to the uncreated Creator, the One source of all– Genesis 1:1
“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.”
In this first chapter, the Godhead reveals Himself as a plurality of persons in a singularity of substance and essence. ‘God’ is the subject of the first sentence. ‘God’ is in the plural form, ‘Elohim’, with the verb ‘created’ in the singular form. This plurality in unity is seen also in verse 26: “Let US make man in OUR image, according to OUR likeness.”
As we read through the Bible there will be a progressive revelation of the mystery of the Trinity, God as a Tri-unity of oneness, ‘echad’; ‘Echad’ is the Hebrew word that is used to describe the Triune God as ‘one’. It is a word describing a composite oneness, or a community of oneness (Deuteronomy 6:4; Genesis 2:24; Ezekiel 37:17; Ezra 2:64).
The God of Genesis 1:1 is the God of the Gospel of John Chapter 1, verse 1. In the Gospel of John, we see the Creator God defined as the Word of God, the Son of God, who is Jesus Christ (John 1:14). As you read through the Bible you will see that Jesus, the Christ, is the second person of the Trinity. The apostles also refer to Him as the Creator (Colossians 1:16).
The third person of the Trinity, the Holy Spirit of God, is introduced in verse 2.
With the heavens, God created the heavenly beings- the angels (Gen 1:1).
This is followed by the account of six days in which various parts of the creation are brought into manifestation:
DAY ONE- The Light; and He separated it from the darkness.
DAY TWO– The atmosphere; He separated the waters, creating an expanse in between called ‘sky’ or ‘the heavens’.
DAY THREE– The land appears as God separated the waters into the seas. God said, “Let the earth sprout with vegetation, plants yielding seed after their kind.”
DAY FOUR– God says, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens.” The greater light (the sun) and the lesser light (the moon) and the stars are revealed.
DAY FIVE– God says, “Let the waters teem with living creatures and let the birds fly above the earth.” (Marine life and birds).
DAY SIX- God says, “Let the earth bring forth living creatures after their kind.” God also says, “Let us make man in our image.” Male and female He created them.
- The second day is without any commendation that the expanse of sky was ‘good’, nor the darkness. The likely cause is that Satan, referred to in the Bible as ‘the prince of the power of the air’ (Ephesians 2:2), was already actively present in the earth’s atmosphere, as one who had usurped authority from God and had become His enemy. We learn about the “rulers of the darkness of this world” in Ephesians 6:12.
- In the Bible, the day begins with the evening and is followed by morning. Each day is to begin with ‘rest’.
- There is no record of a morning or evening on the seventh day in which God rested from His work of creation. God rested because He was satisfied, not because He was tired. This seventh day rest will speak prophetically of the ‘ETERNAL REST’ God will provide for those who enter into His satisfaction with the sufficiency of Christ’s perfect work of redemption. This satisfaction is eternal. It is not a 24-hour single day of REST, but it is a FOREVER REST that we find in Christ, our true Sabbath (Matthew 11:29).
- Whereas the plants, birds, fish, and animals were created after ‘their’ kind, when God created the human race, He said, “Let us make man in ‘our’ image and after ‘our’ likeness.” The high privilege of human beings is that they are created to mirror the moral character of God as His image bearers.
In Genesis 2 we see the first man, Adam, in his created state of untried innocence; not yet in perfect obedience. He is a picture of all that Jesus would be as man, except that Jesus is the perfect man in the state of perfect obedience.
In the New Testament Jesus is referred to as “the second man” (1 Cor. 15:47) and “the last Adam” (1 Cor 15:45).
A bride was taken from Adam’s side to be His co-regent, one appointed to reign together with him in oneness (Gen 2:21-22).
Adam, the first bridegroom, was put into a deep sleep. (The word ‘sleep’ is used in the New Testament for a believer’s death; death is no longer seen as “the wages of sin” for our sins have been paid for by Jesus taking the death-penalty we deserved (Romans 6:23), but instead, death is likened to ‘a sleep’, a transition to new state).
The man said, “This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh; She shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.” 24 For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother and be joined to his wife; and they shall become one flesh. (Gen 2:23-24)
A bride was taken from Adam’s side to be a partner he could perfectly correspond with. She would complement him and be his co-regent.
Jesus fulfills this prophetic picture as the second man, the heavenly bridegroom. Adam was put into a deep sleep, which foreshadows Jesus being put to death on the cross, though He knew no sin. His shed blood and sacrificial death not only provided atonement for our sin, but made possible the formation (the Hebrew word is ‘building’) of a bride, the church as His eternal companion.
Genesis 2:22 22 The LORD God fashioned (the Hebrew word is ‘banah’- ‘built’) into a woman the rib which He had taken from the man, and brought her to the man.
Jesus will ‘build’ His church (His bride)- Matthew 16:18.
Paul writes of this mystery in the Book of Ephesians.
30 For we are members of His body, of His flesh and of His bones. 31 “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.” 32 This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church. (Ephesians 5:30-32, NKJ)
Jesus left His Father’s house to gain a bride at the price of His own life. In this prophetic picture, Jesus, like the first man, Adam, must be put into a deep sleep, a picture of His death.
We can see how the wounded side of the first man points to the wounded side of the second man:
34 But one of the soldiers pierced His side with a spear, and immediately blood and water came out. (John 19:34)
We can also see here in His wounded side a portrait of our purchase as the bride, the church, the Eternal Companion of the Lord, destined to reign with Him in wedded oneness in the ages to come. From His side redemption flows. The church is purchased with His own blood. (Acts 20:28)
Acts 20:28 28 “Be on guard for yourselves and for all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood.
NEW TESTAMENT READING: Matthew 1-2:12
The Gospel of Matthew presents Jesus as the fulfillment of the many Old Testament prophecies regarding the Promised Messiah. He is “born King” (Matt 2:2). He is the King of Kings, the prophesied Son of David whose kingdom rule would be without end. He is the promised seed of Abraham who would bring the blessing of salvation to all who believe, from every nation.
The genealogy that Matthew gives for Jesus of Nazareth demonstrates to the reader that Jesus legally qualifies for the Messianic title as a descendant of David.
Matthew records the ancestry of Joseph, the stepfather of Jesus, to whom Jesus was legal heir. It is believed that Luke records the ancestry of Mary (Luke 3:23-38). His account of Jesus’ genealogy demonstrates that Mary, the mother of Jesus, was also a direct descendant of King David. The prophecies for Messiah could not be fulfilled by just anybody. The Messiah must be a descendant of Abraham through the line of King David (2 Sam 7:12; Psalm 89:3).
Matthew’s genealogy apparently traces Joseph’s legal line of ancestry through Solomon, while Luke’s genealogy traces Mary’s line of ancestry through Nathan.
We see God’s sovereign mercy in the genealogy of the Messiah. Jesus’ ancestors made many foolish mistakes which we will see are recorded in the Old Testament narrative. It is a picture of God’s grace. He provides unmerited favor towards sinners, and even includes sinners in His plan to accomplish His purposes.
God was at work throughout history to preserve His purpose of bringing forth a Savior.
Matthew 1:21 (NASB) 21 “She will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.”
Worship Jesus (Yeshua): His name means “God to the rescue!”
TODAY’S READING IN THE BOOK OF PSALMS: Psalm 1:1-6
Jesus is the Blessed Man of Psalm 1!
And we will be blessed as we meditate upon His Word both day and night this year.
We are warned not to adopt the mindset of the unregenerate person, so often subject to temporal moods, surface evaluations, and false narratives. Instead, we are to delight in the law of the Lord. We know who we are (Identified with Christ), where we are (positioned in Christ) where we have come from, where we are going and what we are to be doing on our way! We can distinguish truth from error, right from wrong, and life from death. We can bring forth the fruit of the Spirit rather than the works of the flesh.
As you read through the psalms you will notice the distinction between ‘the righteous’ and ‘the wicked’. Here, ‘the righteous’ does not denote moral perfection, but being in a right relationship with God through faith in His Word, Jesus Christ. The ‘wicked’ refers to those who are not rightly related to God through faith, but walking in the darkness of unbelief and the counsel of this corrupted world system.
TODAY’S READING IN THE BOOK OF PROVERBS: Proverbs 1:1-6
Proverbs 1- Jesus is our Wisdom from God (1 Cor 1:30; Prov 4)
We need wisdom- the ability to properly apply correct knowledge! We get our proper bearings from God’s Word. When we come to the Bible, we can say, “Here is wisdom from above!” The Holy Spirit guides us into the truth and the experience of God’s Word. The words ‘wise’ or ‘wisdom’ are used some 125 times in the Book of Proverbs.
We need God’s instruction and power to apply the correct knowledge to our daily decision making and activities.
PRAYER– Lord, teach me to rightly acknowledge You and relate to You as my Creator, Redeemer, my Righteousness, the One who secures my Blessedness, and my heavenly Wisdom!