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Read Matthew Chapter 2
1. When do the events of Matthew chapter 2 take place?

2. Herod is a name like “Pharaoh” or “Czar.” Which “Herod” is being referred to in Matthew 2:1?

Going Deeper: Why is he called Herod the Great? Who were his sons?

3. Where was Jesus born according to Matthew 2:1?

Going deeper: Why did Yeshua need to be born in Bethlehem?

4. Copy Micah 5:2 here. Meditate on this. Record your thoughts and impressions.

Going deeper: When did Micah live and prophesy?

5. Where is Bethlehem located? What does the terrain of the area look like?

6. Who else was from Bethlehem according to the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament)? Provide scripture references where you can.

7. What do you learn about Bethlehem from the following verses?
Genesis 35:19

Joshua 19:10-16

Going deeper: What is the situation in Bethlehem today? Is it part of Israel? Explain.

It is our desire to help you grow in your knowledge of God and His Word. If you are looking for additional information and/or materials, please visit our website at RootedinHisWord.org and our Facebook page. 

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Sometimes scripture is so confrontational that it stings. I have felt that sting more than once from Matthew 7:1-5. The Amplified version is particularly prickly.

Do not judge and criticize and condemn [others unfairly with an attitude of self-righteous superiority as though assuming the office of a judge], so that you will not be judged [unfairly]. For just as you [hypocritically] judge others [when you are sinful and unrepentant], so will you be judged; and in accordance with your standard of measure [used to pass out judgment], judgment will be measured to you.

Why do you look at the [insignificant] speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice and acknowledge the [egregious] log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me get the speck out of your eye,’ when there is a log in your own eye? You hypocrite (play-actor, pretender), first get the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye. Matthew 7:1-5 (Amplified)

I have struggled at times asking, “Why, Adonai, is it that another’s sin, is so obvious to me? Why is it especially true of those close to me–those to whom I should show mercy, compassion? And why, God, does their sin become so bothersome, like a persistent itch that just won’t be ignored? Why is their sin so noticeable to me, and yet my own sin is hard to remember–it flits away after a few brief moments of remorse?”

I haven’t received the answer to my questions, but rather I believe God has suggested a strategy to deal with the problem. The solution (or treatment) as it were to this myopic vision problem is to shift my attention attention back to the Truth.

The truth is God is still on His eternal throne. The sin of someone else, no matter how much we love them or our life is entwined with theirs, doesn’t change the truth. It may be a temporary denial of the truth by them, but it does not change the truth.

My job in most situations, is to pray that God will show the offender the truth and gently bring them into a loving realization of the break in fellowship caused by the sin. This is obviously not always as easy as it sounds, but God calls me to wait on Him, to avoid thinking of myself, my hurts, but rather to seek God’s wisdom and healing for wounds and offenses.

The servant of the Lord must not participate in quarrels, but must be kind to everyone [even-tempered, preserving peace, and he must be], skilled in teaching, patient and tolerant when wronged. He must correct those who are in opposition with courtesy and gentleness in the hope that God may grant that they will repent and be led to the knowledge of the truth [accurately understanding and welcoming it], and that they may come to their senses and escape from the trap of the devil, having been held captive by him to do his will. 2 Timothy 2:24-26

I must continue to confront myself with God’s Word, soaking in it and meditating on it to such an extent that through it, God can realign my heart–my thinking, and return me to a place of love for my neighbor. The second greatest commandment of Yeshua is “to love your neighbor as yourself.”

If I am in fellowship with the Father, through His Word, the Spirit of God (Ruach HaKodesh) will fill me. “The fruit of the Spirit [the result of His presence within us] is love [unselfish concern for others], joy, [inner] peace, patience [not the ability to wait, but how we act while waiting], kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such things there is no law.” Galatians 5:22-23

The sin of another is, therefore, just another distraction the adversary will use to disturb unity and cause me to take my focus off of the pursuit of righteousness and peace with Adonai. It will blind me to the Messiah and His completed Work of redemption.

What another has done or said to me is never relevant as a justification for wrong attitude or conduct on my part. My response must be to love my neighbor. In doing so, I am assured of never losing focus on the important issues–issues of eternity.

 

Shabbat Shalom

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Read Matthew 1:18-25
1. Who was Mary’s betrothed (husband)?

2. How is Joseph described in Matthew 1:19?

3. What was the punishment for adultery under the Mosaic Law? (Hint: Leviticus 20:10)

4. What was Joseph’s plan for dealing with Mary and her pregnancy in Matthew 1:19?

5. What happens to Joseph as he is considering these things in Matthew 1:20?

6. What does the angel tell Joseph in Matthew 1:20-23?

7. What will the baby’s name be? What does it mean?

8. Copy Isaiah 7:14 here. Mediate on this

9. During what time period did Isaiah prophesy?

10. Copy Isaiah 7:14 here. Mediate on this. Record your thoughts and impressions.

11. What do you learn about Joseph in Matthew 1:24 to 25?

It is our desire to help you grow in your knowledge of Adonai and His Word. If you are looking for additional information and/or materials, please visit our website at RootedinHisWord.org and our Facebook page. 

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In the opening chapters of Exodus (Shemoth), we are told that Moshe was able to speak for Adonai and wield great power on His behalf, turning water to blood and calling down multiple plagues on Egypt. That being said, Moshe was certainly able to leave Egypt whenever he wanted. So why did he stay and bear with Pharaoh’s nonsense?

Despite his ability to leave, he sought Pharaoh’s permission, and he would not leave without it. Moshe waited for permission because that was what God required of him. Moshe was not on a mission to establish his own personal rights or freedoms. He was not dissuaded from his mission by the fact that Pharaoh was unreasonable and even capricious in giving and then retracting his permission for the Israelites to leave Egypt. The servant of God looks not to the circumstances, the “bosses” or government over him, but rather to the hand of his Master. (See Psalm 123:2) He seeks what is pleasing to the One who sent him.

Pressing into that, we understand that the people who serve God and call Adoniah, “Master,” must submit to every authority over them. (Romans 13:1) It is not for them to assert their rights and try to extricate themselves from the authority of “Pharaoh” or other similarly positioned unfair, unfeeling or unresponsive government leaders. Rather they must wait until they receive permission–from the Master.

God is willing . . . and able, but His timing is His own, not ours. Obey His Word, and it will be well with you. Go out on your own, be self-reliant, try and assert your “rights,” and you will find you are no match for your foes and you have no permission to be where you are. To obey is better than any sacrifice–even a well-intentioned one.

Carving from Beit She’an

Read Matthew Chapter 1
1. According to Matthew 1:1, from whom is Jesus Christ descendant? Why is this important? (Hint: Isaiah 11:-1-2)

2. See how many of the following questions you can answer without looking them up. Later in the study we will review the passages that discuss each person’s life. Keep track of your Biblical literacy!

What was Abraham known for?

What was Isaac known for?

What was Jacob known for?

Who was Judah?

Who was Tamar? How was she related to Judah?

Who was Boaz’s wife?

Who was Uriah?

Who was the wife of Uriah?

Who were Solomon’s parents?

What was Solomon known for?

What was Jehoshaphat known for?

What was Hezekiah known for?

What was Manasseh known for?

What Josiah known for?

3. Why were they brought to Babylon?

4. To whom was Jesus born according to Matthew 1:16? Who was her husband?

5. How many generations were there from Abraham to David?

6. How many generations were there from David until the captivity in Babylon?

7. How many generations were there from the captivity in Babylon until Christ?

It is our desire to help you grow in your knowledge of Adonai and His Word. If you are looking for additional information and/or materials, please visit our website at RootedinHisWord.org and our Facebook page. 

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Blessing for the new year

Blessing for the Sabbath

Shabbat Shalom

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