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Kinneret

Some things in Israel never change, but also continue to amaze and instruct. One such place is Lake Kinneret. You may know it as the Sea of Galilee or Lake Tiberias.

The lake is the lowest fresh water lake in the world. It is 13 miles long and 8 and ½ miles wide at the widest point. It is small when compared to many lakes around the world. Despite its small size, the lake is at no loss for visitors.

Lake Kinneret (Sea of Galilee) was the hub around which Yeshua (Jesus of Nazareth) taught and ministered during his ministry. Mostly he traveled around the north and west side. Many of the stories found in the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John took place on or near the lake.

While I was originally drawn to the lake for the usual reasons pilgrims are, I am drawn back now but the beauty and mystery of the lake. I love to photograph it because the views are rarely the same. The lake changes with the rising and setting of the sun. It changes with the fog and mist that lay across its surface as well.

I offer you, the lake . . .

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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Worship

By Robert Whitaker (1863-1944)

Teach me the ritual that runs beyond
The rote of words, the flexing of the knee;
Let me be always, Lord of Life, with Thee!
In all my motions ready to respond
To Thy unveilings, though in Scripture conned.
Or in the mid-night’s insect melody,
The scent of bloom from desert bush or tree,
The dawn’s reflection in the blushing pond.

How shall I worship only for an hour?
How think Thee present under dome and spire
Or sense Thee in the wafer and the wine
Except the common bread and cup are Thine,
Thine shop and street, the hearth-stone and the fire,
Thine all the ministries of natural power?

 

Blessings for the Sabbath

Matthew Chapter 14

Read Matthew Chapter 14
1. Which Herod is being referred to in Matthew 14:1-12?

Going deeper: What do you know about the Herod being referred to in this chapter from Biblical, secular or Jewish history? How did he come to be married to his brother’s wife? What prohibition to such conduct was found in the Torah. Give the scripture if you can.

2. What did Herod do to John the Baptist according to Matthew 14:1-12? Why?

3. What does He think about Jesus according to Matthew 14:1-2?

4. Where does Jesus go when He learns of John’s death according to Matthew 14:13? Who goes with Him?

5. What does Jesus feel when He sees the multitude according to Matthew 14:14? How does He react?

6. In the evening, Jesus disciples come to him. What do they ask Him to do? How does He respond in Matthew 14:16?

7. How do they respond in Matthew 14:17? What is Jesus’ response to them in Matthew 14:18?

8. Summarize what Jesus does next according to Matthew 14:19-20?

9. Copy Matthew 14:20 -21. Meditate on this. Try to imagine you are one of the disciples participating in this. Try to imagine you are a person in the multitude. Record your thoughts and impressions.

Going deeper: The feeding of the five thousand is the only miracle reported in all four gospels. You can find the story in Mark 6:30-44, Luke 9:12-17 and John 6:1-15.

Going deeper: The phrase “blessed and broke the loaves” is a phrase we will see later in Matthew 26:26 during the last supper when Jesus spoke a similar blessing and other places as well. It seems reasonable that the blessing Jesus gave on these occasions was the traditional blessing Jews recite and have recited for more than 2000 years prior to meals, “Baruch atah, Adonai Eloheinu, Melekh-ha’olam, haMotzi lechem min ha’aretz (Blessed are you, Adonai our God, King of the universe, who brings forth bread from the earth).

10. What do you learn from Matthew 14:22?

11. According to Matthew 14:23 where does Jesus go? What does he do?

12. What do you learn about prayer from the following verses?
Psalm 55:17

Matthew 6:6

Philippians 4:6

13. Where was the boat with the disciples at this time according to Matthew 14:24?

14. What does Jesus do according to Matthew 14:25?

Going deeper: What time is the fourth watch of the night?

15. What is the response of the disciples?

16. What does Jesus say to them according to Matthew 14:27?

17. How does Peter respond according to Matthew 14:28? What is Jesus’ response?

18. What happens to Peter according to 14:29-30? What does Jesus do?

19. What happens when Jesus and Peter got into the boat?

20. What was the response of those in the boat?

21. Where does the boat end up according to Matthew 14:34? What happens when they get there?

22. What do you learn from the following verses?
Genesis 1:6-10

Exodus 14:21-22

Isaiah 43:16

Isaiah 51:9-10

23. What do you learn from the following verses about faith?
Habakkuk 2:1-4

Romans 10:17

Hebrews 11:1

24. What application can you make from Matthew chapter 14 to your life with God?

A Prayer

by Rev. Marion Franklin Ham (1867-1956)

I pray not for the joy that knows

No saving bension of tears;

The placid life of ease that flows

Untroubled through the changing years.

Grant me, O God, the mind to see

The blessings which my sorrows bring;

And give me, in adversity,

The heart that still can trust and sing.

Matthew Chapter 13

Read Matthew Chapter 13
1. Where is Jesus at the beginning of Matthew 13 according to Matthew 13:1?

2. Why does Jesus go out in a boat to speak to the multitude on the shore?

3. What parable does Jesus give to the multitude in Matthew 13:3-9?

4. What do the disciples ask him in Matthew 13:10?

5. How does Jesus respond in Matthew 13:11-15?

6. What is Jesus saying about the passage in Isaiah 6:9-10?

7. To whom was Isaiah originally delivering his message? How were they similar or different from the people to whom Jesus is delivering His message?

8. What does Jesus tell His disciples in Matthew 13:16?

Going deeper: The parable of the sower can also be found in Mark 4:2-20 and Luke 8:4-15.

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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Matthew Chapter 12 (Part 2)

Read Matthew Chapter 12:22-50
1. What does Jesus do according to Matthew 12:22?

2. What does Jesus do according to Matthew 12:25?

3. What does Jesus say to the Pharisees according to Matthew 12:25-30? Summarize His message in your own words.

Going deeper: This discussion by Jesus of the Pharisees’ comments is also found in Luke’s gospel in Luke 11:14-23.

4. What sin does Jesus say will not be forgiven in Matthew 12:31-32?

Going deeper: This reference to the unpardonable sin is also discussed in Mark’s gospel in Mark 3:28-30.

5. What do you learn from the following verses?
Exodus 20:7

Numbers 15:30-31

Deuteronomy 29:14-20

Going deeper: What is the sin Jesus is speaking of? Blasphemy of the Holy Spirit? What type of conduct would constitute this?

6. What does Jesus say about the fruit of a tree in Matthew 12:33?

7. What does Jesus say about the relationship of between the words a person speaks and the condition of his heart in Matthew 12:34-35?

8. Copy Matthew 12:36-37. Meditate on this. Record your thoughts and impressions.

9. What did the scribes and Pharisees ask Jesus for in Matthew 12:38? What was His response?

Review Jonah Chapters 1 to 2.
10. Why was Jonah in the belly of the beast?

11. What does Jonah say of God in Jonah chapter 2?

12. What happens as a result of Jonah’s prayer in Jonah chapter 2?

Read Jonah Chapter 3
13. How was Jonah a sign to the Ninevah? What was the result of the “sign?”

14. What does Jesus say about the Queen of the South and Solomon in Matthew 12:42?

Going deeper: Review 1 Kings 10:1-9 for the story of the Queen of Sheba’s visit to Solomon.

15. What does Jesus teach them about unclean spirits in Matthew 12:43-45?

16. Where is Jesus in Matthew 12:46? Who was asking to see him?

17. How does Jesus respond in Matthew 12:48-50?

18. Why was Jesus’ response not what people expected of him?

19. What do you learn from the following verses about Jesus’ siblings?
Matthew 13:55

Mark 6:3

Going deeper: The interchange regarding Jesus’ siblings is recorded Mark 3:31-35 and Luke 8:19-21.

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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Matthew Chapter 12 (Part 1)

Read Matthew Chapter 12
1. What were Jesus and His disciples doing according to Matthew 12:1?

2. What was the reaction of the Pharisees according to Matthew 12:2?

3. What do you learn from the following verses about the Sabbath?
Exodus 20:10

Exodus 35:2

4. What is Jesus’ response to the Pharisees according to Matthew 12:3-8?

5. What do you learn from the following verses?
1 Samuel 15:22

Psalm 40:6

Hosea 6:6

Going deeper: You can review the story of David and his mighty men eating the show bread in 1 Samuel 21:1-6. You can see how Jesus is arguing from biblical precedent (established rule) which is a common rabbinical technique.

6. Copy Matthew 12:8. Meditate on this. What does Jesus mean? Support your answer with scripture.

7. Where does Jesus go next according to Matthew 12:9? Who does He find there?

8. What do the Pharisees ask Jesus? How does He respond?

9. What does Jesus ask the man to do in Matthew 12:13? What happens?

10. What do you learn from Matthew 12:14?

11. What is Jesus response according to Matthew 12:15?

12. What is the significance of Matthew quoting Isaiah in Matthew 12:18-21?

13. Who do they bring to Jesus according to Matthew 12:22? What does Jesus do?

14. How does the crowd react?

15. How do the Pharisees react?

16. What do you read in Matthew 12:25?

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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Magdala

Synagogue

Box found with images found in the Temple

Magdala is a place that the student of the Apostolic writings (Newer Testament) must visit. This location offers what few places in Israel offer, namely a sight that wasn’t build over several times in the 2000 years since the ministry of Messiah Yeshua (Jesus). It offers archeological remains which were not disturbed or robbed in order to build other structures in the area. 

The most significant finds at Magdala are the two synagogues. The one pictured in this post is the first one discovered. A second synagogue was found recently and excavations have begun in that location. 

The synagogue in Magdala offers us a glimpse into the life of the Messiah Yeshua. We know from scripture that Yeshua (Jesus) taught in the synagogues around the Kinneret (Sea of Galilee). (Matthew 4:23) Thus, given that this synagogue is believed to have been in existence in the first century, it can reasonably be assumed that Yeshua taught in this synagogue. He read the scriptures from the scroll. He sat on the bench where the teacher sat. Few other places in Israel today offer such direct connection to Messiah. 

Magdala was a thriving city during the first century. It was a port city on the west coast of the Kinneret (Sea of Galilee). The city is believed, based on the archeological finds, to have been a wealthy city and Torah-observant city.

With regard to Torah observance, we find in Magdala evidence of many mikveh (ritual purity baths). These were used and continue to be used today by Torah-observant Jews as a means to ritual purity. Use of the mikveh involved immersing oneself into the mikveh and reciting certain scriptures and blessings. The land of Israel has many, many mikvaot. These testify of the strong faith culture of this city as well as the Galilee region.

The main industry in Magdala appears to have been fish processing. It is believed that fish were brought to Magdala and held in shallow pools until being salted and dried for transport and sale to locations throughout Israel and the Roman Empire.

When you visit the site, you are able to see the synagogue, the mikvaot, the pools and other remains of the industry and housing in Magdala. There is also a beautiful hotel and guest center.

 

Pedestal for holding Torah scroll

Ritual bath (Mikveh)

Pools for holding fish

Water channel for moving water from one location to another
Murals inside the chapel at Magdala

Chapel at Magdala

View of Mt Arbel from Magdala

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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Early Will I Seek You

O God, You are my God; Early will I seek You; My soul thirsts for You; My flesh longs for You In a dry and thirsty land Where there is no water. Psalm 63:1

I rise to greet You when the dew still soaks the Spring flowers.
The lush forest of your presence awaits me.
An alcove of lush green trees in the secret forest is my morning time with You.

Cool breezes, earthy fragrance, warm sunshine greet me as I walk toward You, arms open wide, anticipating Your embrace, Your Word spoken over me–my hope, my comfort, my strength, my teacher, my love.

Abba! Abba!
Good morning!
Blessings to You, my Father God–Creator–Redeemer–Almighty One–Precious Protector–High Tower–Imanuel–El Shaddai–Adonai Tz’avot–I am yours! You are mine.

Forever is ours, my eternal love!

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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