Twelve Days, Twelve Things to Ponder
The first five books of the Bible have always had special status. They are the first words God left for us. They tell us who he is and what he has done for his people. They are the foundation of everything that came afterwards.
Moses was the man God spoke to and gave the task of writing down what has come to be known as "the Law" or "the Torah" (which means "the teaching"). We know it was Moses who mainly wrote these books. Not only does every ancient witness insist on it, Jesus himself confirmed it many times.
Unfortunately, although the English names of the books are well known to us (Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy) that's often where the familiarity ends. Many Christians avoid reading them. We should not make that mistake. Jesus certainly didn't! In fact, from the number of times he quotes it, Deuteronomy may have been his favourite book. That should be a good enough reason for us to spend a lot of time with it, too!
The very first words of each book give us a good hint to help us know what they contain (which is also why Jews use some of these words -- marked in italics -- to give them their Hebrew titles):
"In the beginning..." (Genesis) talks about how God created the world and humans, how they rejected him, and how he chose one man, Abraham, to set his plan to rescue the whole world in motion
"These are the names..." (Exodus) identifies Abraham's descendants in slavery in Egypt and tells the story of how God made himself known to them, rescued them, and set down the Law that made them a people
"The LORD called Moses" (Leviticus) contains the direct instructions that God gave to Moses to tell his people how they should live so that he could dwell among them
"The LORD spoke to Moses in the wilderness" (Numbers) tells the painful story of God's people wandering in the desert for 40 years, how he provided for them, and eventually brought them to the Promised Land
"These are the words that Moses spoke" (Deuteronomy) are the last words that Moses said to God's people just before they entered the Promised Land, reminding them of everything God had done and said
Thank God today for the love and care that he has showed to his people for thousands of years! Thank him for the fact that he has made himself known. Thank him that he is still at work to shape us and to save us!
"God said to Moses, 'I AM WHO I AM.' And he said, “Say this to the people of Israel: '"I AM has sent me to you."' God also said to Moses, 'Say this to the people of Israel: "The LORD, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you." This is my name forever, and thus I am to be remembered throughout all generations.'" -- Exodus ("The Names") 3:14-15
What Should I Read Today?
DIP YOUR TOES IN: Deuteronomy 6:4-7 Read