Saturday, January 6, 2018

What I Am Reading: Fierce Convictions: The Extraordinary Life of Hanna More: Poet, Reformer, Abolitionist by Karen Swallow Prior.

  I love to read!  However, one of the difficulties is that it is easy to go from one book to the next without taking time to reflect on what I just read.  Sometimes my desire to read lots makes it so that I actually miss out on the benefits of reading lots!  So the purpose of these "What I Am Reading Posts" is two-fold.  First, to cause me to slow down after finishing a book and reflect on what I read.  Secondly, to provide a short review for others to help them determine if they would like to read that book as well!

What Did I read?  "Fierce Convictions:  The Extraordinary Life of Hanna More:  Poet, Reformer, Abolitionist" by Karen Swallow Prior.

Image result for fierce convictions karen swallow prior


Why I read it:  One of my goals this year to read more biographies.  There are numerous reasons I find myself enjoying biographies.  I enjoy how I am challenged, encourage, inspired, by the lives of others.  I am encouraged as I see the numerous ways in which God works through the lives of others.  It also serves as a way to learn more about history.  I am no history buff, and to be honest have never enjoyed most history books I have read, which I why I love biographies because they allow me to learn a little more about the events, circumstances, and cultures of the individual whose biography I am reading.  So why did I chose to read, "Fierce Convictions?"  Quite simply, last year it was recommend on a blog I follow and the kindle edition was only $2.99!

The Content:  The book follows the life of Hannah More (duh) who lived in the United Kingdom from 1745-1833.  Prior to beginning this biography I had never heard of Hannah More and found myself grateful for the opportunity to learn about the life that she lived.  As the subtitle of the book suggests Hannah More was a poet, play-writer, and novelist.  It was her gift and love of writing that she utilized as an abolitionist trying to bring down the slave trade in the United Kingdom- which happened shortly before her death.  Hannah also used her writing to seek reform in the United Kingdom in areas such as the church, women's education, morality, and education of the poor.  Hannah was born into a middle class family but through her witty and winsome personality, alongside her gifted writing ability, regularly found herself mingling with and speaking to the upper classes of society when we should visit London.  A few names of people that Hannah spent quite a bit of time with that are well known would include William Wilberforce and John Newton.  Here are a couple quotes from the book that capture just a little bit of who Hannah More was, "More was a woman of strong convictions, but she kept a plentiful table.  She mixed comfortably and enthusiastically with rich and poor, churched and unchurched, and all in between.  It was her habit to eat meals with the poor villagers during the years of the Sunday schools.  At the same time, she maintained close friendships with bishops and lords."  Another quote tells us of More's extensive use of her writing schools to impact people at all levels of society, "She had written plays produced by England's premier stage manager.  She had written verses extolled by the country's most revered literary critic.  She had turned from that world to the church and written serious treatises that had been praised by royalty and bishops.  Yet few of such accomplishments would do what Hannah More did next:  she gathered together all the talent and experiences she had gained thus far in life- her literary skills, her experience in the Sunday schools, her political savvy, and her social finesse- and poured them into a pamphlet for the poor.  She never could have dreamed that stopping so low would eventually lead to her most influential and most highly praised work.  She now piled her pen to advance reform about the common readers with not a book, but a pamphlet."  The author of this book does a wonderful job of detailing in a riveting and well written biography on the life of Hannah More.  

What I liked:  In addition to this being a well written biography here are three things from the life of Hannah More that I appreciated.  First, it was clear to all that Hannah More was a very gifted writer and that she had a winsome personality.  That in and of itself is not something that is that uncommon.  What was uncommon is the way in which Hannah sought to use what God had given her to help bring change to the areas in the world around her that needed to be changed.  May we also seek ways to do that in our time and world.  Second, Hannah held strong convictions but didn't hold those strong convictions in a way that was off putting,  or unnecessarily offensive.  In fact, Hannah was able to hold strongly to her convictions while simultaneously having good relationships with people who had beliefs and lifestyles vastly different than hers.  I was longing for this to be more the case today than it seems to be at the present time.  Third, I appreciated how Hannah More at times sought to find the middle ground in bringing about reform.  While this rightly was not a part of her work as an abolitionist, in other areas she sought to find the middle ground between those who were strongly against any change and those who were seeking such drastic change that the likelihood of their success was minimal.  Hannah decided that some reform was better than no reform and was willing to work in that middle ground in several instances.  There is much more that I could write about as far as what I liked.  

What I didn't like:  The author does a good job of drawing out the realities that Hannah More was, like we all are, a product of her culture and this at times will come across in the life of Hannah More. Some might struggle with her views of women and education (which at the time was somewhat progressive) as well as her views on the limitations and the minimal education that would be offered to the lower class.  

Who Should Read this Book:  If you like biographies, and maybe even if you don't, you should read this one!  You will be challenged, encouraged, and grateful to God for the ways in which He used the life of Hannah More to accomplish His purposes.  

If you read or have read "Fierce Convictions" I would love to hear your thoughts!  

Friday, December 29, 2017

What I am Reading: Finish by Jon Acuff




       I love to read!  However, one of the difficulties is that it is easy to go from one book to the next without taking time to reflect on what I just read.  Sometimes my desire to read lots makes it so that I actually miss out on the benefits of reading lots!  So the purpose of these "What I Am Reading Posts" is two-fold.  First, to cause me to slow down after finishing a book and reflect on what I read.  Secondly, to provide a short review for others to help them determine if they would like to read that book as well!

What Did I read?  "Finish" by Jon Acuff

Image result for Finish by Jon Acuff

Why I read it:  I have been familiar with Jon Acuff when a friend told me about his blog and book entitled, "What Christians Like" which I found funny and entertaining.  Jon in recent years has focused on helping people begin, make, plan, and now finish their goals!  The title of this book is what drew me in because as much as I hate to admit it I struggle to finish many of the goals that I start.  The one I dislike the most is how I have lost the same 20 pounds numerous times only to stop well short of my ultimate weight loss goal and put those 20 pounds right back on.  There have also been many projects, initiatives, ministry ideas that I start, get them going, and than they just fizzle out.  So, I read this book in hopes that I can find some benefit from it that will help me "Finish" more of what I set out to do.  

The Content:  The subtitle of this book could have easily been, "How Perfectionism Keeps You From The Finish Line,"  Jon looks at the lies that perfectionism tells us and how those lies keep us from finishing.  Jon gives practical and a bit out of the ordinary advice in the self help realm such as cutting your goals in half, purposely chose things that you are going to bomb (let go) while you focus on your goals, and work to add fun to all your goals.  Jon also focused in on the hiding places and noble obstacles that keep us from finishing.  A noble obstacle is, "an attempt to make your goal harder than it has to be so you don't have to finish, but can still look respectable."  He used the story of a neighbor who has the goal to clean out his garage but never will because he decided he has to have a garage sale before he cleans out the garage.  All the aspects that go into having a garage sale make it much less likely that his neighbor will ever complete his much simpler goal of cleaning out his garage.  Hiding places are the places we naturally go, without thinking, that take us away from working on our goal (can we say streaming television and social media)!  There is also a chapter dedicated to keeping track of data to help you get to the finish line and debunking some of the myths of data!  At the end of each chapter are a list of action steps that you are to do on your goals.  Haven't finished that yet (oops:  can I admit that when writing a review on a book entitled: "Finish") but seems like they will be helpful as I look at my goals for the upcoming year both personal and work related.  

What I liked:  First of all, Jon's humor that I first discovered on his blog a lot of years ago is still strong!  I found myself smiling and LOLing (did I really just write that) numerous times throughout this book!  I appreciate that!  Secondly, it was practical and not nearly as cheesy as most self-help books that, as a general rule, I avoid.  It was practical, it was simple, it seemed to ring with authenticity, and an understanding of real life.  I appreciated that Jon doesn't over promise.  You don't read that if you finish your goals you will become a millionaire, every dream will come true, and life will be grand.  Instead, he acknowledges that in the end you can never really know what will come of the finished product, but there will be satisfaction in finishing what you set out to do and keeping a promise that you made to yourself (your family, boss, work-place, etc).  Only time will tell if the ideas that I implement in this book will help me finish it seems it will be beneficial.  

What I didn't like:  I am not very good at being critical when it comes to my reading.  Likely, an area where I need to grow as reading books critically certainly has benefits.  Since I went into this book looking for exactly what it provided I don't have anything that comes to mind that I didn't like about it.  

Who Should Read this Book:  Anyone sho struggles with finishing!  If you find yourself struggling to finish the things you set out to do this book would be of benefit to you!  

If you have read Finish by Jon Acuff I would love to hear your thoughts!  

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Cover to Cover questions from Numbers Part 2

 At our church we have begun a 42 week series where we will be doing an over-view of all of Scripture from Genesis to Revelation!  Throughout these 42 weeks we are encouraging the people at Bethel to follow the Bible reading plan which will bring us all through the whole Bible chronologically over the next 42 weeks!  Each week at Bethel the texts that we read during the week is what the sermon will be based on.  As a part of this series we are giving people opportunities to ask questions about what they are reading that they would like answered.  So every Thursday on this blog myself, alongside the elders, will seek to answer those questions the best we can!  So here we go for the questions we received on Genesis 1-11.  

Question #1:   "In Deuteronomy 21:18-21, is there an age limit applied to the punishment for rebellious children?  Say a child is very young?  or perhaps he is old and now head of his own household?  Is there an age limit on this punishment?"  (Answered by Elder Dave Graves).

By calling him “a glutton and a drunkard,” the text seems to imply an older son, perhaps independent of his parents’ household.  The purpose of this act, which we would certainly consider extreme, was to purge evil from Israel’s midst.  As one reads these sections, it is important to be aware of the types of laws God instituted in the Old Testament — civil, ceremonial and moral. The aforementioned verses are an example of civil law. Because of Jesus’ work, God’s relationship with Israel has been reconstructed. We are no longer under such civil laws. While the principal of purging evil from a family is still valid (i.e. such a son could be told he must leave the household because of his rebelliousness and influence on other siblings), the punishment prescribed in Deuteronomy is no longer valid.  The following website is helpful in explaining the types of OT laws: https://jdgreear.com/blog/why-dont-we-follow-all-of-the-old-testament-laws/ 


As we move through this series please keep the questions coming!  You can ask questions on the connect card attached to your bulletin on Sunday's, by emailing me at joshrobetson52@gmail.com
We certainly don't have all the answers and at times will not be sure how to answer but seek the one who grants wisdom to help us understand what we can.  At the end of the day it is not about having greater knowledge, or to simply know more stuff, it is to know more by which we can continue together to strive to Exalt God's Name, Equip God's People, and Evangelize God's World in our homes, communities, and world.   

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Cover to Cover questions from Numbers

         At our church we have begun a 42 week series where we will be doing an over-view of all of Scripture from Genesis to Revelation!  Throughout these 42 weeks we are encouraging the people at Bethel to follow the Bible reading plan which will bring us all through the whole Bible chronologically over the next 42 weeks!  Each week at Bethel the texts that we read during the week is what the sermon will be based on.  As a part of this series we are giving people opportunities to ask questions about what they are reading that they would like answered.  So every Thursday on this blog myself, alongside the elders, will seek to answer those questions the best we can!  So here we go for the questions we received on Genesis 1-11.

Question #1:  In Numbers 20, why was this incident the thing that kept Moses and Aaron out of the promise land?  Aaron had done several others things that seem worse (Answered by elder Bob Burke).

My take on the situation is that Moses' and Aaron's pride, irritation, and disobedience prevailed in the situation and that they robbed God of the Glory due only to God.  He and Aaron started out well.  They consulted God,  saw the glory of the Lord (v6) and had clear instruction of what to do (v8).    They even started out well by taking the staff as God commanded them to do (v9) and assembled the people.  Verse 10 is the telling verse.  Somewhere in the time between seeing God's Glory and watching all the grumbling Israelites gather for assembly, pride and anger got the best of them.  In verse 10 they impatiently call the Israelites "Rebels" and claim "we shall bring water for you out of the rock."   Moses reverted to the habit of Ex 17:6 when God commanded him to strike the Rock at Horeb like he had struck the waters of the Nile.  God showed Grace by still giving water, but it was God not a magic show by Moses.


Robbing God of the Glory due Him is a more serious offense than any other trangression Moses and Aaron could make.  Akin to the Serpent's temptation in the Garden and Lucifer's famous saying, "I will be like the most high." (Isa 14:14) , the action of striking the rock shows the core issue of sinful pride in the nature in all humans.   Contrast this to the account of Paul and Barnabas after the healing of the crippled man at Lystra (Acts 14:8 -18).  When the crowds said, " the Gods have come down"  Paul and Barnabus tore their clothes, ran into the crowds saying that they were not God, but men like all others, and gave the Glory to God (v14, 15).   The key lesson is to acknowlege God's gracious hand in our lives and not take personal credit for His work  In Numbers 20: 12 God had the final word, "12 And the Lord said to Moses and Aaron, “Because you did not believe in me, to uphold me as holy in the eyes of the people of Israel, therefore you shall not bring this assembly into the land that I have given them.”


 As we move through this series please keep the questions coming!  You can ask questions on the connect card attached to your bulletin on Sunday's, by emailing me at joshrobetson52@gmail.com
We certainly don't have all the answers and at times will not be sure how to answer but seek the one who grants wisdom to help us understand what we can.  At the end of the day it is not about having greater knowledge, or to simply know more stuff, it is to know more by which we can continue together to strive to Exalt God's Name, Equip God's People, and Evangelize God's World in our homes, communities, and world.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Cover to Cover Q&A from Exodus 15-40.

At our church we have begun a 42 week series where we will be doing an over-view of all of Scripture from Genesis to Revelation!  Throughout these 42 weeks we are encouraging the people at Bethel to follow the Bible reading plan which will bring us all through the whole Bible chronologically over the next 42 weeks!  Each week at Bethel the texts that we read during the week is what the sermon will be based on.  As a part of this series we are giving people opportunities to ask questions about what they are reading that they would like answered.  So every Thursday on this blog myself, alongside the elders, will seek to answer those questions the best we can!  So here we go for the questions we received on Exodus 15-40.

Question #1:  1.) Exodus 32:27-  Did the Levites murder everyone who was non-levite?  Was it just the men or or all people they came across?  Were they Levites not guilty of participating in the golden calf incident too?  

       This in one instance where the original Hebrew helps us to better understand what is going on here.  In verse 27 where in the ESV it says "go to and fro" the Hebrew word does not indicate a wandering about just randomly killing people.  The Hebrew word indicates a careful, systematic, thorough search.  It was a careful searching out, not a haphazard killing of whoever.  With that indication (and since many people who were involved in the golden calf incident who weren't killed) we can conclude that the Levites asked people if they were going to follow God and repent of their sin or not.  Those who said no, were killed, those who said yes were spared.  The Levites were indeed guilty in participation in the golden calf incident as well.  The way in which they demonstrated their repentance was their willingness to kill family, friends, and neighbors who refused to repent and worship God alone.  It appears that only men were killed.  


2.) Why are so many of the incredibly detailed instructions for the Tabernacle, etc. seemingly repeated (almost word for word) a second time?

 Certainly doesn’t make for riveting once, let alone two times. Neither do the directions to assemble the new entertainment center, but they’re important as were the directions in building the temple. Why twice? It’s not uncommon in biblical literature for messages to be repeated. We see that in the Psalms and Proverbs, even Jesus’ genealogy (although in different formats).

As we think about the reasons for such detailed directions, it should be noted that a church building (the temple) was a markedly different venue for worshipping God. It wasn’t like there were previous temples from which to model their work or other churches on which to base their building efforts.  

Plus God probably didn’t want to trust this building to a freelance effort. After all, how quickly did the Israelites stray when Moses was up on the mountain for 40 days. Left to their own design, the Israelites would have probably added a few golden calves to the direction.

Is there any application we can garner from this?
I think the main point we can gain is that God is a God of order. Look at creation.
I also am reminded of I Corinthians 14:33 — God is not a God of disorder, but of peace.
The focus there was speaking in tongues, women speaking in church and orderly worship. God’s ways are orderly. Satan’s ways aren’t. Part of the reason we see such disorder in the world today.


3.)  What does it mean that God changed his mind/relented in Exodus 32?  

Response: 
In seems absurd to say, that GOD changed HIS mind, after all, the scripture is replete with verses like Malachi 3:6, “I the LORD do not change. So you, O descendants of Jacob, are not destroyed.”  James 1:17, “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” Numbers 23:19, “God is not a man, that He should lie, nor a son of man, that He should change His mind. Does He speak and then not act? Does He promise and not fulfill?” 

Based on the above verses, it is ridiculous to say God can change HIS mind. But, in Exodus 32 it shows that God relented. it seems that there may be two things: perhaps the word ‘relented’ isn’t the appropriate word to use in this context and examining the verses if God’s declaration was conditional or unconditional. First, perhaps the writer of Exodus may have only a limited way of describing God’s pain as He saw the condition of His people. As such, using feelings of finite humanity to ascribe to the heart of the infinite God to help us (humans) understand God’s work from a human perspective. Consider, Exodus 32: 7- 10. In snapshot, God told Moses to go down to his (Moses’s) people, God describes the people as stiff-necked, God is vexed because Moses’s people were quick to turn away from HIM. We can see and understand how God can be upset about the attitude of HIS people.  

God’s declaration can either be conditional or unconditional. An example of unconditional declaration from God are His promises towards man, for example, II Samuel 7:16; Genesis 17: 4 – 5, etc. Here, I see it to be conditional. Verse 10 opines on the conditionality – God orders Moses to leave His presence so that His anger may burn against them. Why would God say, Moses leave…? Because, as long as Moses is in His presence, Moses will continually intercede and plead not for destruction but for life, see verses 11 – 13. This conditionality is also similar to what we find in Genesis 18: 16 – 33; Jeremiah 18: 7 – 11.  

Thus, as long as there is an attempt to try to influence a life to God’s truth, to repentance, to change a heart, our God will always relent. So, while He is unchanging and unchangeable. He is also all-wise. He cannot “change His mind” in the sense of realizing a mistake, backtracking, and trying a new approach.

4.)  What does it mean that Moses saw God in Exodus 33 when it states in the NT that no one has seen God?  

There is actually not a contradiction here because as we see in verse 20 Moses did not see the full presence of God from his front, but instead as God's glory passed by Moses was hidden from seeing God's face.  Verse 20, "'But, he said, 'you cannot see my face, for man shall not see me and live.'  And the Lord said, 'Behold there is a place by my where you shall stand on the rock, and while my glory passes by I will put you in a cleft of the rock, and I will cover you with my hand until I have passed by.  then I will take away my hand, and you shall see my back, but my face shall not be seen.'"  


As we move through this series please keep the questions coming!  You can ask questions on the connect card attached to your bulletin on Sunday's, by emailing me at joshrobetson52@gmail.com
We certainly don't have all the answers and at times will not be sure how to answer but seek the one who grants wisdom to help us understand what we can.  At the end of the day it is not about having greater knowledge, or to simply know more stuff, it is to know more by which we can continue together to strive to Exalt God's Name, Equip God's People, and Evangelize God's World in our homes, communities, and world.

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Cover to Cover Q&A from Genesis 37-Exodus 14

   At our church we have begun a 42 week series where we will be doing an over-view of all of Scripture from Genesis to Revelation!  Throughout these 42 weeks we are encouraging the people at Bethel to follow the Bible reading plan which will bring us all through the whole Bible chronologically over the next 42 weeks!  Each week at Bethel the texts that we read during the week is what the sermon will be based on.  As a part of this series we are giving people opportunities to ask questions about what they are reading that they would like answered.  So every Thursday on this blog myself, alongside the elders, will seek to answer those questions the best we can!  So here we go for the questions we received on Genesis 1-11.

Question #1:  1.) What does it mean to consecrate the firstborn males?  What didi it mean to redeem every firstborn male?  Exodus 13.  It sounds like the firstborn livestock were to be sacrificed but what was it to redeem the firstborn male children?"  (Answered by Josh Robertson and Keith Kinder).

          The consecrating and redeeming of the firstborn males, both for animals and for humans, was for the purpose of reminding the Israelites of how God redeemed the firstborn males of the Hebrews in Egypt by the sacrifice of the lamb that they were commanded to kill and place the blood on their door.  It seemed to be a process by which the works and provision of God in Egypt would be remembered and passed onto the coming generations (vs:14-16).  With animals they would be given the option of either sacrificing the first born to the Lord, or if they refused to sacrifice them, the first born animal would need to be killed (11-13).  It is clear that all firstborn sons were to be redeemed (not sacrificed, or killed) and they were to be redeemed by the killing of a lamb- again pointing back to the God's redeeming the firstborn of Israel in Egypt by the blood of a lamb and also a foreshadowing of what Christ was going to do on the cross in the near future.  
       When we get into Leviticus there are many instructions on redeeming and consecrating things and people through ceremonial sacrifices and/or offerings that the priests were teach the people to do in devotion and submission to YHWH, their God, who was contrasting His expectations versus the demands of the pagan "gods" around them, several of whom demanded child-sacrifice.


Question #2:  When and why did Moses send away his wife and sons in Exodus 18?  In Exodus it sounded like his wife was with him on his return to Egypt (Answered by Keith Kinder and Josh Robertson).  

 Good question.  Seems like Jethro, his father-in-law and a priest of God,(but not clear if he was a believer in JHWH or like Melchizedek a believer in God most High) had a mixed relationship with Moses that also may have influenced his daughter and grandsons, that they were in and out of Moses' life as he led children of Israel.  There is no indication when (or why) Moses sent away his wife and son between Exodus 4 and Exodus 18.  It is very possible that they never go further than the lodging place along the way that is referenced in Exodus 4 and therefore they never actually went into Egypt. Possibly they traveled together part way to be together a bit more but Moses not wanting them in Egypt when everything was taking place in God working to redeem His people.  


Question #3:  "At a lodging place on the way, the Lord met Moses and was about to kill him. But Zipporah took a flint knife, cut off her son's foreskin and touched Moses' feet with it. Surely you are a bridegroom of blood to me," she said. So the Lord let him alone. (At that time she said "bridegroom of blood", referring to circumcision."  Exodus 4:24-26  Why was the Lord going to kill Moses when he had just given him such detailed instructions for what he was to do?  What does this circumcision act by his wife have to do with anything?  This thoroughly confused me and seems to not fit with the rest of things (Answered by Keith Kinder).  

Moses' mission was a life-and-death mission that was to reclaim all Israel to true worship of God which included circumcision as a sign of that covenant.  Moses going to his people with a non-conforming son would have been a bad start.  Therefore it was Moses' wife who was able to discern God's displeasure at Moses and was able to act appropriately and circumcise her son.  


 As we move through this series please keep the questions coming!  You can ask questions on the connect card attached to your bulletin on Sunday's, by emailing me at joshrobetson52@gmail.com
We certainly don't have all the answers and at times will not be sure how to answer but seek the one who grants wisdom to help us understand what we can.  At the end of the day it is not about having greater knowledge, or to simply know more stuff, it is to know more by which we can continue together to strive to Exalt God's Name, Equip God's People, and Evangelize God's World in our homes, communities, and world.  


At our church we have begun a 42 week series where we will be doing an over-view of all of Scripture from Genesis to Revelation!  Throughout these 42 weeks we are encouraging the people at Bethel to follow the Bible reading plan which will bring us all through the whole Bible chronologically over the next 42 weeks!  Each week at Bethel the texts that we read during the week is what the sermon will be based on.  As a part of this series we are giving people opportunities to ask questions about what they are reading that they would like answered.  So every Thursday on this blog myself, alongside the elders, will seek to answer those questions the best we can!  So here we go for the questions we received on Genesis 1-11.  

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Cover to Cover Q&A from Genesis12-36.

  At our church we have begun a 42 week series where we will be doing an over-view of all of Scripture from Genesis to Revelation!  Throughout these 42 weeks we are encouraging the people at Bethel to follow the Bible reading plan which will bring us all through the whole Bible chronologically over the next 42 weeks!  Each week at Bethel the texts that we read during the week is what the sermon will be based on.  As a part of this series we are giving people opportunities to ask questions about what they are reading that they would like answered.  So every Thursday on this blog myself, alongside the elders, will seek to answer those questions the best we can!  So here we go for the questions we received on Genesis 12-36. 

Question #1:  From Genesis 19... Why would Lot offer his virgin daughters up to the mob of men wishing to have sex with the visitors in his home? Were women simply not valued at all? Or was he so concerned that the Lord would then destroy the city (would Abraham have share that with him?) that he decided to sacrifice his daughters for the "greater good"? (Answered by Elder Dave Grave and elder canidate Cash Ujah)  

        Difficult question to answer because we are not given any narration commentary on what Lot did, we are simply told what He did.  There does not seem to be any indication that Abraham had shared with Lot what He knew was going to be coming.  So there are likely several factors at play here.  One would indeed be that at this point in time people did hold a low-view of women so that would have played into this scenario.  Secondly, is that there was also an extremely high view of hospitality and seeking to take care of ones visitors and guests.  So those two realities combined probably led Lot to respond the way that he did.  We should note that Scripture in no way condones, encourages, or states that what Lot did was right.  I think we can safely say that what we know about Scripture and God is that Lot did not make the right choice.  Thankfully by God's grace and provision Lot's daughters were not violated and God provided for the safety of all in Lot's home doing this event.  

Question #2:  Why in Genesis 12 was Pharaoh afflicted when he had taken Sarai into his house when it was Abram that lied about the identity of Sarai.  (Answered by Elder Dave Graves)    

         Judgment reflects the gravity of the sin of taking another man’s wife (see David and Bathsheba) which doesn't change simply because Pharaoh didn't know.  It also reflects the sovereignty of God and his commitment to keep his promise to Abraham to bless him. Even though Abram lied, not only was his life spared, he received an abundance of wealth from Pharaoh both before and after Sarai’s revelation of her true identity.  


 As we move through this series please keep the questions coming!  You can ask questions on the connect card attached to your bulletin on Sunday's, by emailing me at joshrobetson52@gmail.com
We certainly don't have all the answers and at times will not be sure how to answer but seek the one who grants wisdom to help us understand what we can.  At the end of the day it is not about having greater knowledge, or to simply know more stuff, it is to know more by which we can continue together to strive to Exalt God's Name, Equip God's People, and Evangelize God's World in our homes, communities, and world.