January 28, 2024 – 1 Kings 15 – Judah’s kings Abijam and Asa

2 Chronicles 15-16 adds details to the record found in 1 Kings 15 of the two kings who succeeded Rehoboam in Judah – Abijam and Asa. Their reigns display a mix of God-honoring words and deeds along with a failure to persevere in trust in God. Meanwhile, Jeroboam’s heir in the north, Nadab, is overthrown and murdered by Baasha, who usurps the throne, killing all Jeroboam’s male lineage, as previously prophesied.

Notes on 1 Kings 15

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January 21, 2024 – 1 Kings 14:21-31 – The Sins of Judah

While Jeroboam had set up the two golden calf idols in his kingdom, King Rehoboam in Judah carried on with loyal worship of Yahweh for a few years, aided by Levites and other believers who fled from the Northern Kingdom. But soon idolatry spread there, too. God then sent chastisement on Rehoboam in the form of an invasion by the Egyptian pharaoh Shishak, who plundered the Temple treasuries.

Notes on 1 Kings 14:21-31

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January 14, 2024 – 1 Kings 14:1-20 – The Death of Jeroboam’s Son

King Jeroboam’s son falls ill, and he sends his wife to inquire of the prophet Ahijah. The prophet predicts Jeroboam’s downfall and the extermination of his entire line because he had encouraged Israel to raise up groves or asherah to worship, and had forsaken Yahweh.

Notes on 1 Kings 14:1-20

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January 7, 2024 – 1 Kings 13 – The Disobedient Man of God

This strange story illustrates the saying of Samuel to King Saul, that “to obey is better than sacrifice” (1 Samuel 15:22-31). It can serve as a warning to us all.  1 Corinthians 10:12 – “Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall.”

Notes on 1 Kings 13:1-34

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December 17, 2023 – More on Hanukkah, Christmas and the Birth of Christ

This week we’ll look at Luke 2:1-20; Matthew 1:18-2:23 and more aspects of the Hanukkah/Christmas season. When and why did Christmas become recognized as the day of Christ’s birth? What was the Star of Bethlehem, who were the Magi, and why were shepherds part of Christ’s birth announcement?

Notes on “When was Jesus Born?”

Notes on the Shepherds at the Birth of Christ

Notes on the Star of Bethlehem

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December 10, 2023 – Celebrate Hanukkah!

The eight-day feast of Hanukkah, a festival of lights, occurs in the darkest time of year. It commemorates the rededication of the Temple in 165 B.C. after it was cleansed by Judas Maccabeus when the Jews prevailed against the Seleucid Greeks of Syria. In the New Testament it is referred to as the Feast of Dedication.

Jewish tradition says that when the special oil for the Temple lamp stand could not be obtained in time, Judah Maccabeus took a step of faith (and a risk) by lighting the lamp with only one day’s supply of oil. It burned miraculously for eight days until the extra oil arrived.

Many scholars place the time of the Annunciation of the angel to Mary and the conception of Christ (rather than his birth) at this time of year, and the festival contains numerous types and foreshadowings of Christ’s coming.

Notes on Hanukkah (disregard the meeting schedule)

Notes on Hanukkah and the Humility of Mary

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December 3, 2023 – 1 Kings 12 – A Kingdom Divided

Solomon’s son Rehoboam listens to bad counsel from his young advisors. Jeroboam returns and persuades the 10 northern tribes to rebel against Rehoboam, as God had told him through the prophet Ahijah.  Jeroboam sets up two golden calf idols at Bethel and Dan. The fruit of Solomon’s slide away from wisdom to idolatry results in a long-lasting national disaster for the nation of Israel.

Notes on 1 Kings 12:1-33

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