Read Genesis 12
One of the most exciting things about the times we live in is that archeology is uncovering so much about the Bible. Jews returning to their homeland are sharing more and more about their knowledge of faith and history. It is truly opening a world up to all of us that has laid dormant for centuries. You might want to look into collecting a few books or DVD’s about Bible Archaeology. I recommend the books written by Adam Zertal , also Aaron Lipkin‘s videos, and Randall Price‘s books, (and more Randall Price), and also the Written in Stone – documentary series by Gordon Robertson on DVD (there are 4 titles in this series at this writting, and two in production: House of David, Secrets of the Temple, Jesus of Nazareth, Kings and Prophets, and coming soon…Oracles of God – Part One – Old Testament, and Part 2 – New Testament). They can be ordered by calling 1-800-700-7000. There are lots more I could recommend, but I’ll leave it there for now. Also, get your hands on some Messianic Jewish publications, such as the series of books written by Rabbi Jason Sobel (The Rock, The Road, and The Rabbi, Mysteries of the Messiah, and Alligning with God’s Appointed Times).
Click this link to watch a clip of Written In Stone, Kings and Prophets: https://www.cbn.com/giving/special/kingsandprophetsdvd.aspx
Our wonderful, amazing Bibles are coming to life with so many beautiful layers. Where one may pick up the scriptures and read for its historical content, another sees the copies and shadows in all the words and stories of the Old and the New, with Jesus waiting to be discovered between every line and paragraph. Yet another sees the veiled prophecies being whispered in the Old and utterly shouted in the New for anyone to hear if they will simply tune their ears to hear and their eyes to see through the power of the Holy Spirit dwelling in them. The word of God is truly living and active, powerful, and the same yesterday, today, and forever. A masterpiece of love from our Creator.
Using a map from your Bible, locate the locations of Bethel and Ai. And if you’d like you can download and print this map that I have provided, and then mark where Bethel an Ai are on it, draw a mountain in between them, and then draw a dotted line from Shechem down to the mountain. You can even draw a small tent on top of the mountain. In the white space to the right of Israel draw a rock pile and then draw an arrow over to the mountain where Abram’s camp is, which is where that rock pile altar was. Do your own research on these places. What do their names mean? What has been discovered about them? What events have taken place in these areas? What pieces of archeology have been discovered from these areas, and perhaps are being held in the British Museum, or somewhere else? Did Charles Warren write anything about them in his explorations?
What did Abram do after he built this altar (Genesis 12:8)? So, this altar was his place of prayer. Try to draw praying hands on top of your little illustration of the altar.
What does the name Bethel mean (see Genesis 28:19). Does the center margin of your study Bible say what the Hebrew word for Bethel means?
What caused Abram to go to Egypt? Why did he feel he needed to lie to them about Sarai? How did the Egyptians treat Abram (12:16), and what caused them to discover Abram’s lie (12:17)? What part of Israel did Abram return to (13:3-4)? Draw a dotted line to show Abram’s travels to Egypt and back. What was the reason for Abram and Lot to have to part company? What area did Lot choose? The “plain of the Jordan” is thought to have been the south end of the Dead Sea. It was once lush and green. What cities were there where Lot pitched his tent (13:12)? Where did Abram move to (13:18)? Mark this on the map. Draw the altar and some trees in the white space to the right of Israel and draw an arrow over to Hebron.
Lot got caught up in a battle between which kings (14:1-17). Do you recall from our Noah chapter who the Rephaim are? See Ezekiel 32:27; Numbers 13:33; Deut. 2:11,20,21; 3:11; 2 Sam. 21:19; Josh. 11:22. They are related to the Nephilim of Genesis 6:1-5. And the Zuzim in Ham – the son of Noah who saw his father’s nakedness.
Was Abram victorious in getting Lot back? Who met with Abram right after his victory (14:18) and what did the two of them exchange? Who came to Abram in chapter 15:1? (See John 1:1) …And what event took place between the Word and Abram (Gen.15)? Look on a map and see how much land God was giving to Abram (vs 18). Could the “river of Egypt” be the Pishon (Gen. 2:11)? The Pishon skirted the whole land of Havilah (Gen.2:11), which was the Sinai Peninsula, which was Egypt – and the land Ishmael would later inhabit (Gen.25:18). What body of water skirts the land of Havilah today? This is all part of a puzzle we are putting together.
Personal application: How does this apply to me? Do I have a place of prayer where I go to meet with God? Has God’s Spirit met me there and moved me with love / vision /courage? Have I ever felt like I had to lie about something as a matter of life and death? Did my lie find me out? Ever had to split up with a family member, or felt the need to offer them something that rightfully belonged to you? And after getting them out of a tight spot, once, did you have to bail them out again not long after? Did you seek God for His grace to handle it all with mercy? Is the relationship with that person damaged beyond repair now or has God granted you reconciliation? Ever won a battle over an enemy? Ever given or received a blessing from a priest of God? (Lots to think about!)
Project (an altar that I can build)
Promise Box: Type out the scripture verse, Jeremiah 29:11-13, on pretty paper in a pretty script to fit on the lid or around the base of a small round hatbox. Glue the verse onto the box, along with additional favorite fabrics, ribbon, or scrapbooking images, etc. and then decoupage the box with Mod Podge.
Blessing Box: Type out the scripture verse, Genesis 14:19, replacing Abraham’s name with mine.
Once the box is decorated, write current life issues on pages of pretty stationery and on the flip-side write a Bible promise (from a Bible Promise Book) that’s applicable to the issue. Add them to the Promise Box.
OR write out ways God has blessed me each day and add to Blessing Box before going to bed at night.
OR fill the box with random acts of kindness cards that can be done each day to bless others. Find a set of printable random acts of kindness cards at mrshlovesjesus.com.
“And you shall remember the Lord your God,”
Deuteronomy 8:18 (NKJV)