Tag Archives: Shechem

Genesis 12–17: Instant gratification is never instant or gratifying

It’s not easy to leave one’s family, even at 75 years old, but God called Abram out of his father’s house for his own good. This was Abram’s first test. 

In the Torah passage לֶךְ-לְךָ Lech Lecha/Lekh Lekha (“go forth,” Genesis 12:1-17:27), we learn that Abram’s faith came from both hearing God’s instruction and doing it. Doing matters, not just hearing. Hearing is easy, doing is much more involved and more difficult. When our life is smooth and we get instant gratification, it’s easy to continue walking in a way that brings a quick blessing. But when we are doing something that is right but we do not receive instant gratification, it’s harder to continue doing what is right.

When God tells us to do the right thing but we don’t want to do it, it’s hard to do it anyway.

Continue reading Genesis 12–17: Instant gratification is never instant or gratifying

Genesis 33-34: Ya’akov reconciles with Esau, returns to the Land; Shimon, Levi avenge Dinah

Richard AgeeHumility and loyalty are underlying teachings of Genesis 33-34. The phrase “women and children first” is held up as selfless chivalry, but it it seems Ya’akov (Jacob) wasn’t so chivalric in his sending his wives and children ahead of him toward what he thought would be his heavily armed and bloodthirsty brother, Esau. Then there’s the disaster that followed the defilement of Ya’akov’s daughter, Dinah, whose forceable conquering at the hands of a city’s “first son” led to the deaths of all the men and the enslavement of the women and children of that city by the hands of two of Ya’akov’s sons.

Continue reading Genesis 33-34: Ya’akov reconciles with Esau, returns to the Land; Shimon, Levi avenge Dinah

1st Kings 12, part 1: Yeroboam leads a tax rebellion, ends up rebelling against God

Daniel AgeeAs it says in Ecclesiastes, “There is nothing new under the sun.” The rebellion Yeroboam (Jeroboam) started that split ancient Israel in northern and southern parts is still with us today, because the “hearts” of people haven’t changed.

Continue reading 1st Kings 12, part 1: Yeroboam leads a tax rebellion, ends up rebelling against God

Mark of a gift: Messianic meaning of circumcision

Daniel AgeeModern society views the rite of circumcision to be backward at best and barbaric at worst. Yet, it actually is a cutting memorial of what God has cut away from the faithful — men and women — through the Messiah, Yeshua (Jesus).

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Abraham: An example of hope and trust in God, part 1

Richard AgeeThis is the first part of a recap of Abraham’s life, looking at about two dozen key events that show why God picked him to be the start of a special group of people on Earth and to be a key example of trust in God being considered righteousness.

Continue reading Abraham: An example of hope and trust in God, part 1