Genesis Chapter 12
1 Yahweh said to Abram, 'Leave your country, your kindred and your father's house for a country which I shall show you;
2 and I shall make you a great nation, I shall bless you and make your name famous; you are to be a blessing!
3 I shall bless those who bless you, and shall curse those who curse you, and all clans on earth will bless themselves by you.'
4 So Abram went as Yahweh told him, and Lot went with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he left Haran.
5 Abram took his wife Sarai, his nephew Lot, all the possessions they had amassed and the people they had acquired in Haran. They set off for the land of Canaan, and arrived there.
6 Abram passed through the country as far as the holy place at Shechem, the Oak of Moreh. The Canaanites were in the country at the time.
7 Yahweh appeared to Abram and said, 'I shall give this country to your progeny.' And there, Abram built an altar to Yahweh who had appeared to him.
8 From there he moved on to the mountainous district east of Bethel, where he pitched his tent, with Bethel to the west and Ai to the east. There he built an altar to Yahweh and invoked the name of Yahweh.
9 Then Abram made his way stage by stage to the Negeb.
10 There was a famine in the country, and Abram went down to Egypt to stay there for a time, since the famine in the country was severe.
11 When he was about to enter Egypt, he said to his wife Sarai, 'Look, I know you are a beautiful woman.
12 When the Egyptians see you they will say, "That is his wife," and they will kill me but leave you alive.
13 Therefore please tell them you are my sister, so that they may treat me well because of you and spare my life out of regard for you.'
14 When Abram arrived in Egypt the Egyptians did indeed see that the woman was very beautiful.
15 When Pharaoh's officials saw her they sang her praises to Pharaoh and the woman was taken into Pharaoh's household.
16 And Abram was very well treated because of her and received flocks, oxen, donkeys, men and women slaves, she-donkeys and camels.
17 But Yahweh inflicted severe plagues on Pharaoh and his household because of Abram's wife Sarai.
18 So Pharaoh summoned Abram and said, 'What is this you have done to me? Why did you not tell me she was your wife?
19 Why did you say, "She is my sister," so that I took her to be my wife? Now, here is your wife. Take her and go!'
20 And Pharaoh gave his people orders about him; they sent him on his way with his wife and all his possessions.
Genesis Chapter 13
1 From Egypt Abram returned to the Negeb with his wife and all he possessed, and Lot with him.
2 Abram was very rich in livestock, silver and gold.
3 By stages he went from the Negeb to Bethel, where he had first pitched his tent, between Bethel and Ai,
4 at the place where he had formerly erected the altar. There Abram invoked the name of Yahweh.
5 Lot, who was travelling with Abram, had flocks and cattle of his own, and tents too.
6 The land was not sufficient to accommodate them both at once, for they had too many possessions to be able to live together.
7 Dispute broke out between the herdsmen of Abram's livestock and those of Lot. (The Canaanites and Perizzites were living in the country at the time.)
8 Accordingly Abram said to Lot, 'We do not want discord between us or between my herdsmen and yours, for we are kinsmen.
9 Is not the whole land open before you? Go in the opposite direction to me: if you take the left, I shall go right; if you take the right, I shall go left.'
10 Looking round, Lot saw all the Jordan plain, irrigated everywhere -- this was before Yahweh destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah-like the garden of Yahweh or the land of Egypt, as far as Zoar.
11 So Lot chose all the Jordan plain for himself and moved off eastwards. Thus they parted company:
12 Abram settled in the land of Canaan; Lot settled among the cities of the plain, pitching his tents on the outskirts of Sodom.
13 Now the people of Sodom were vicious and great sinners against Yahweh.
14 Yahweh said to Abram after Lot had parted company from him, 'Look all round from where you are, to north and south, to east and west,
15 for all the land within sight I shall give to you and your descendants for ever.
16 I shall make your descendants like the dust on the ground; when people succeed in counting the specks of dust on the ground, then they will be able to count your descendants too!
17 On your feet! Travel the length and breadth of the country, for I mean to give it to you.'
18 So Abram moved his tent and went to settle at the Oak of Mamre, at Hebron, and there he built an altar to Yahweh.
Job Chapter 1
1 There was once a man in the land of Uz called Job: a sound and honest man who feared God and shunned evil.
2 Seven sons and three daughters were born to him.
3 And he owned seven thousand sheep, three thousand camels, five hundred yoke of oxen and five hundred she-donkeys, and many servants besides. This man was the most prosperous of all the Sons of the East.
4 It was the custom of his sons to hold banquets in one another's houses in turn, and to invite their three sisters to eat and drink with them.
5 Once each series of banquets was over, Job would send for them to come and be purified, and at dawn on the following day he would make a burnt offering for each of them. 'Perhaps', Job would say, 'my sons have sinned and in their heart blasphemed.' So that was what Job used to do each time.
6 One day when the sons of God came to attend on Yahweh, among them came Satan.
7 So Yahweh said to Satan, 'Where have you been?' 'Prowling about on earth,' he answered, 'roaming around there.'
8 So Yahweh asked him, 'Did you pay any attention to my servant Job? There is no one like him on the earth: a sound and honest man who fears God and shuns evil.'
9 'Yes,' Satan said, 'but Job is not God-fearing for nothing, is he?
10 Have you not put a wall round him and his house and all his domain? You have blessed all he undertakes, and his flocks throng the countryside.
11 But stretch out your hand and lay a finger on his possessions: then, I warrant you, he will curse you to your face.'
12 'Very well,' Yahweh said to Satan, 'all he has is in your power. But keep your hands off his person.' So Satan left the presence of Yahweh.
13 On the day when Job's sons and daughters were eating and drinking in their eldest brother's house,
14 a messenger came to Job. 'Your oxen', he said, 'were at the plough, with the donkeys grazing at their side,
15 when the Sabaeans swept down on them and carried them off, and put the servants to the sword: I alone have escaped to tell you.'
16 He had not finished speaking when another messenger arrived. 'The fire of God', he said, 'has fallen from heaven and burnt the sheep and shepherds to ashes: I alone have escaped to tell you.'
17 He had not finished speaking when another messenger arrived. 'The Chaldaeans,' he said, 'three bands of them, have raided the camels and made off with them, and put the servants to the sword: I alone have escaped to tell you.'
18 He had not finished speaking when another messenger arrived. 'Your sons and daughters', he said, 'were eating and drinking at their eldest brother's house,
19 when suddenly from the desert a gale sprang up, and it battered all four corners of the house which fell in on the young people. They are dead: I alone have escaped to tell you.'
20 Then Job stood up, tore his robe and shaved his head. Then, falling to the ground, he prostrated himself
21 and said: Naked I came from my mother's womb, naked I shall return again. Yahweh gave, Yahweh has taken back. Blessed be the name of Yahweh!
22 In all this misfortune Job committed no sin, and he did not reproach God.
Job Chapter 2
1 Another day, the sons of God came to attend on Yahweh and Satan came with them too.
2 So Yahweh said to Satan, 'Where have you been?' 'Prowling about on earth,' he answered, 'roaming around there.'
3 So Yahweh asked him, 'Did you pay any attention to my servant Job? There is no one like him on the earth: a sound and honest man who fears God and shuns evil. He persists in his integrity still; you achieved nothing by provoking me to ruin him.'
4 'Skin after skin!' Satan replied. 'Someone will give away all he has to save his life.
5 But stretch out your hand and lay a finger on his bone and flesh; I warrant you, he will curse you to your face.'
6 'Very well,' Yahweh said to Satan, 'he is in your power. But spare his life.'
7 So Satan left the presence of Yahweh. He struck Job down with malignant ulcers from the sole of his foot to the top of his head.
8 Job took a piece of pot to scrape himself, and went and sat among the ashes.
9 Then his wife said to him, 'Why persist in this integrity of yours? Curse God and die.'
10 'That is how a fool of a woman talks,' Job replied. 'If we take happiness from God's hand, must we not take sorrow too?' And in all this misfortune Job uttered no sinful word.
11 The news of all the disasters that had fallen on Job came to the ears of three of his friends. Each of them set out from home -- Eliphaz of Teman, Bildad of Shuah and Zophar of Naamath -- and by common consent they decided to go and offer him sympathy and consolation.
12 Looking at him from a distance, they could not recognise him; they wept aloud and tore their robes and threw dust over their heads.
13 They sat there on the ground beside him for seven days and seven nights. To Job they spoke never a word, for they saw how much he was suffering.
Proverbs Chapter 1 [1-7]
1 The proverbs of Solomon son of David, king of Israel:
2 for learning what wisdom and discipline are, for understanding words of deep meaning,
3 for acquiring a disciplined insight, uprightness, justice and fair dealing;
4 for teaching sound judgement to the simple, and knowledge and reflection to the young;
5 Let the wise listen and learn yet more, and a person of discernment will acquire the art of guidance.
7 The fear of Yahweh is the beginning of knowledge; fools spurn wisdom and discipline.
Thoughts and Reflection
In these passages we see that even the biblical giants of the faith experience brokenness. We learn about two of them, Abram and Job. They are far from perfect, but they are both called on by the Lord. Abram divides the land between himself and his nephew Lot. He doesn’t take the better land for himself and knows that God will continue to take care of him.
Job experiences great loss and suffering. Instead of cursing the Lord, he decides to worship him. This is something that struck me. Not to get to personal, but after experiencing my own loss and suffering I was comforted to know that God is always present. I only wish he would stop it from happening to begin with. That is what is difficult for me to accept and understand.
What are your thoughts from reading these passages?
About This Project
For the year 2022, I decided that my New Year’s Resolution was to read the whole Bible following the Bible in the Year plan presented by Fr. Mike Schmitz. It is a big and bold undertaking. You can follow along by subscribing. Feel free to look at previous day’s post and comment. It’s something we can all learn from together!