Saturday, May 28, 2016

Week 21 Bible Reading Review

Week 21  2 Chronicles 6:1 to 2 Chronicles 29:1

2 Chron 6  Solomon’s prayer shows the reason why some people today turn toward Jerusalem in prayer. Does the absence of the temple and God’s special presence there invalidate this benefit?

2 Chron 7:5  An incredible number of animals sacrificed, such a contrast from our present lives and way of worshiping.

2 Chron 10  Going against the word of God will end in failure, period.

2 Chron 12:14  Doing evil is equated with not seeking the Lord!  More on this later.

2 Chron 13:18  Key:  “The Judahites succeeded because they depended on the Lord”

2 Chron 15:9  Something I had not remembered…  many from Israel defected to Judah when they noticed that “Yahweh his God was with him” (the king).  It would go well with us if we did this today, but is there a country where this would be true of the leader?

2 Chron 15:13  Those who would not seek God were put to death!  Are we seeking Him?

2 Chron 16  Perhaps Asa took matters in his own hands when he thought he could handle it.  A lesson to remember, seek YHVH regardless.

2 Chron 18:15  It is funny how the king did not believe Micaiah’s first response.  Almost as if he knew the answer himself.

2 Chron 18:28  Why would Jehoshaphat fight alongside Ahab after seeking Micaiah’s words, and agree to be the target on top of that?  Perhaps he thought safe as the prophecy did not pertain to him directly.

2 Chron 20:22  I don’t think it insignificant that this verse states God fought for Judah the moment they began their shouts and praises!

2 Chron 19:2 and 20:37  Jehoshaphat’s alliance with Israel’s kings did not bring blessings, but instead curses from God.  If the prophets had not told him the cause and effect would he have made the connection?  Do we make the proper connections of cause and effect in our own lives?

2 Chron 26  A series of events that might seem unrelated could be a set of events bringing about God’s will, judgement and justice to a disgraced king.

2 Chron 26:5  …During the time that he sought the Lord, God gave him success.

I heard a message this past week where to me, the primary questions asked were, “What is my priority?” and “Am I doing it?”  After reading through Chronicles, I now know that my priority should be to “seek God with my whole heart”.  My priority need not be to find God, but rather to seek Him as His word promises that we WILL find him when we seek.  The next logical question then becomes:  “How does one seek God?”  I have been thinking about this question and the answer may be different for everyone but here are a few ways (taken from lessons in Chronicles) we should be seeking Him.

  • Look for God in creation.  Instead of just taking life for granted as it passes by, one should slow down and consider the artist.  Consider the Creator as we enjoy His creation all around us.
  • Seek God’s council / direction for the challenges we face.  Even if we think “I got this one”, which proved to be a grave mistake for some of the kings we read about, it is always better to seek His will in all things.
  • Look for God in my circumstances.  It is easy to chalk up the cause of my circumstances to time and chance, or as a result of other's choices and actions, but as I mentioned in some of the verses read, we should consider what our responsibility is for our situation.  What is God showing us?  What is He working on in our life?  This will not only show us where we need to repent, or where we need to press on, but also is another way to seek Him and His heart for us!
  • Humbly Seek God at all times.  In time of need with prayer and supplication.  This usually isn’t too hard for us as we tend to do it by default when we run out of options.  But just as importantly, go to Him with thanksgiving and praise in our time of abundance (or need).  Another downfall for several kings, when they became proud and thought they had acquired their wealth and position on their own, was forgetting that God is the one who establishes as well as removes us.  Conversely some turned their back on God when they faced judgement, trial and hardship, which also stems from pride in oneself.

Some verses on seeking God:

  • But if you seek the LORD your God from there, you will find him, if, indeed, you seek him with all your heart and soul. (Deut 4:29)
  • Now seek the LORD your God wholeheartedly and with your entire being! … (1Chr 22:19)
  • … The LORD is with you when you are loyal to him. If you seek him, he will respond to you, but if you reject him, he will reject you. (2Chr 15:2)
  • They solemnly agreed to seek the LORD God of their ancestors with their whole heart and being. (2Chr 15:12)
  • Blessed are they that keep his testimonies, and that seek him with the whole heart. (Ps 119:2)
  • I love those who love me, and those who seek me find me. (Prov 8:17)
  • And you shall seek me, and find me, when you shall search for me with all your heart. (Jer 29:13)
  • “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened for you. (Matt 7:7)

I looked at the Strong’s for the word "seek" in Deuteronomy 4:29 and found there are 2 different words used in that verse.  Below is the list of Strong's definitions for the 2 words:

H1245 "baqash"
  1. to search out (by any method, specifically in worship or prayer)
  2. to strive after
H1875 "darash"
  1. to tread or frequent
  2. to follow (for pursuit or search)
  3. to seek or ask
  4. to worship

Next Reading:  Week 22  2 Chronicles 29:1 to Nehemiah 1:1

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