Vineyard Life Journal

An online forum for our church family to connect around our 2012 daily Bible reading plan using the S.O.A.P. method.

Day 8 (Starting Week #2!)

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Welcome to Day 8 of our Life Journal!

Click here for today’s reading: Genesis 20, 21, 22; Luke 8 (2012 Daily Bible Reading Plan)

Before you comment or read what I have posted, please read the following passages for yourself and complete your own S.O.A.P. exercise… How does this work?

S.O.A.P = Scripture, Observation, Application, Prayer

Your journal doesn’t have to be a rigid outline… S.O.A.P. is meant to be a format… a structure that helps us think things through. If you simply focus on a verse that seemed significant to you and comment on it, that comment would be your observation. Then, ask, “How does this apply to my life? What does it mean to me? Then pray around that.

I am by nature pretty detailed… and there’s always a lot that jumps out at me in the scriptures. Again, I am trying to make this MY journal that is simply online. I’m not trying to teach (although I have made a few teaching comments along the way.)

I hope you are enjoying this as much as I am!

S cripture

Genesis 20, right off the bat I noticed that Abraham and Sarah AGAIN pretended that Sarah was his sister as they did in Egypt! Hard for me to understand why Sarah would go along with this… God didn’t allow anything to happen. As it turns out, Sarah really is Abraham’s half sister (Genesis 20:12). Abraham said to Sarah, ‘This is how you can show your love to me: Everywhere we go, say of me, “He is my brother.” They must have really feared for their lives… doesn’t seem like trusting God to me though… justsayin

Genesis 21:8-20 is both very sad and very inspiring. Hagar and Ishmael are sent out into the desert… She is sobbing thinking they are going to die, but God heard Ismael crying, again God spoke to Hagar and reassured her that He would make Ismael into a great nation! Then she saw a well… wonder if it was already there? Says, “God opened her eyes and she saw a well.”

vs 34 “And Abraham stayed in the land of the Philistines for a long time.” Uh, oh… Philistines. Perhaps Abraham should have NOT stayed there for a long time?

22:2 “Then God said, “Take your son, your only son, whom you love—Isaac—and go to the region of Moriah. Sacrifice him there as a burnt offering on a mountain I will show you.” Obviously Isaac wasn’t his ONLY son… He was the son of promise, but Ismael was no less his son! This really makes me wonder…

Even though God had told Abraham that he wanted him to sacrifice his son, Abraham said, “We will worship and then we will come back to you” and “God will himself provide the lamb for the sacrifice.” Imagine Isaac carrying the wood (unknowingly) on which he was about to be sacrificed. One has to wonder what Isaac’s reaction was. He wasn’t a small child! It says Abraham bound him up. Was Isaac yelling? I can only imagine him freaking out at what his father was about to do to him!

Luke 8, the parable of the sower and the seed… and Jesus calms the storm, the woman who touched Jesus and was healed…

Jesus mother and brothers… Family goes beyond blood…


(My overall observation is I could do a SOAP for every passage! Especially in Luke!)

Jesus calmed the storm, set a demon-posessed man free… the sower and the seed…

How often is there a well nearby and I don’t see it? Hagar was so upset (sobbing) that she didn’t notice the well that was right there.

The story of Isaac and Abraham is an amazing story of faith and promise… Hard to imagine being willing to sacrifice my only son… Yet that’s what God asked Abraham to do. And that’s what God himself did… with Jesus. Jesus was himself the lamb for the sacrifice that God provided for each of us.

(Today if I heard about this, I would be required to call Children’s Services!)

A pplication

I need God to open my eyes… and to trust that we will provide whatever I need. To have a soft heart (good soil) so that I can be fruitful.

P rayer

Lord, I think You that You keep Your promises. That I would be willing to sacrifice everything to follow You and to be obedient to You. Help me to see the wells that are nearby that I may not be able to see (through my sobbing).

Help me to not allow weeds to choke out what You are doing in my life… That I would be fruitful… That I would always have ears to hear.


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10 thoughts on “Day 8 (Starting Week #2!)

  1. Dan Talbott on said:

    So much in these chapters to drink from. Two jumped out at me this morn. Gen 20:6 God withheld Abimelech from sinning. I think do we fully know the depths that Adams fall has brought upon us? If not for the restraining hand of God on the world keeping us from reaching the end of our fallen condition, we couldnt live on this earth a week.His great mercy. And Gen 22:17 God told Abraham that his seed would possess the gate of his enemies.A prophesy we are Abrahams seed by faith ( we the church) and Jesus said in Matt. 16:18 the gates of hell will not prevail against his church. His church is moving his kingdom is growing.

  2. Dan Talbott on said:

    Sorry, correction should be we do not fully know the depths

  3. I have heard/read the story about Jesus calming the storm, but never thought about it quite like I did today. Jesus is also with us everywhere we go. We could have a storm on the highway or at a store. We especially must battle waves of testing at work. Jesus is there too. Do we have faith in those situations? It is no different. We are loved and He wants the best for us. This does not mean our faith will not be tested. Instead, how much stronger are we when our faith is tested, we believe and His light shines through. I am trying to put this into action. We are called to believe. Let’s do it!

  4. Mark Long on said:

    Gen 20:17-18 shows me how our half truths and rationalizations(sin) may affect others as they became infertile due to Abraham and Sarah’s actions. God graciously protected Abimelech during the deception and healed them after Abraham prayed to God for forgiveness. God is so gracious when we repent!

  5. Connie Hall on said:

    Genesis 22:2 …your only son Isaac. O I heard a sermon one time on covenants. This man said that in a covenant one party tells the other what they expect of them. Then the party who suggested that, has to top it. God told Abraham to take his son, his only son, and sacrafice him. Then God took his son, his only son, and really did sacrifice him, Jesus, for us.

    I never noticed how both of Abraham’s sons went through the same thing. Genesis 21:14-21 Abraham rose early in the morning and took bread and water to Hagar. He sent them on their way. Next thing is Hagar believes her son is going to die. An angel of God calls to the boys mom and tells her that her son will be be a great nation. God opens her eyes and shows her the well of water, which lets her know they will live and be fine.

    Genesis 22:3-18 Abraham rose early in the morning, got what would be needed for the trip, took Isaac and went on his way. Just at the point where Issac had to know he was going to die, an angel of God calls out to Abraham. Now Abraham can see a ram for the sacrifice. Was it there before? Surely he was looking for one to back his own words that God himself would provide the sacrifice. I think the ram and the well were not visable to the human eye during the trials. Just my opinion.

    Genesis 22:16 God, knowing how flawed even his friend Abraham was, swore with or by (not sure how to put it) himself. He knew that only his word could be trusted 100% and it was so important that no chances could be taken with the dust of this earth.

    Luke 8
    O I am glad that women were welcome in Jesus’s ministry. I am even happier that they were not ‘perfect’ women.

    Luke 8:18 Therefore take heed how you hear. For whoever has, to him more will be given; and whoever does not have, even what he seems to have will be taken from him. O I think this is about the word of God.

    Luke 8:22
    O I wonder if satan created this storm so they would die or turn around so that the man on the other side of the lake would not be delivered from the legion of demons. I am assuming that he knows things from the end to the beginning too. Not sure. There is much I am not sure about.

    Luke 8:34 When those who fed them saw what had happened, they fled and told it in the city and in the country. O I wonder if they ate pork back then? It’s the only reason I can imagine them feeding the swine.

  6. Even though Sarah ousted Hagar and Ishmael from the home, God was there right next to her and her child – God lifted her head and showed her not only the well, but I believe also the living water – Himself.

  7. maren gray on said:

    know what i think is interesting….that the people were afraid after Jesus sent the demons out of the man and into the pigs…the man was then in his right thinking and THEN they were afraid…shouldn’t they have been afraid before that???!!! just wondering

  8. Wow-long chapters! So much going on! One that I will share is Luke 8:
    S- vs 25: Then he said to his disciples, “Why can’t you TRUST me?” (MSG), or Where is your FAITH?
    Observe/Application: Taking hold of the Word, holding onto to it no matter what and sticking to it until there’s a harvest -what type of soil is my heart-and to what point do I really believe?
    Do I TRUST Him enough to let Him reveal and bring light into my life and let the hidden things in my heart be exposed? -and that I can always count on His love and mercy to forgive me and cleanse me-that He won’t toss me out, or be ashamed of me?
    Do I TRUST Him enough-that He is first in my life even above my family and not making my family “my God”
    Do I TRUST Him, that even through storms of life that I feel will overtake me and that I’m sinking– that He alone has the power to rebuke the storms and bring calm to any situation?
    Do I TRUST Him enough to know that He has dominion over demons to not be fearful-do I TRUST Him to not judge others and to see through His eyes, they even the most degenerate person’s life can be made whole and transformed.
    Do I TRUST Him enough -when I’m weak, hurt, sick-to have enough strength to just grab a piece of His garment to be made whole?
    Do I TRUST Him even when it seems like it’s too late for myself or others, for a situation that can never be brought back to life-a relationship, a dream, His calling on my life, etc.
    Father-let me hear and listen to apply your Word to my life, thank you that you are trustworthy!

    Ok totally off Luke 8 and back to Genesis– does it bother anyone else that Abraham kept lying (or shall we say half-truth) concerning Sarah his wife-to be called his sister when “his” life seemed in jeopardy?-it is amazing to see of who he was before at one time, to trust God enough with his own son, Issac.

  9. Glad to see what some of you had to say about the half-sister thing, I don’t usually read any posts till I type my post in-because everyone has such good points I’d be changing my posts! Maren liked your point about the man-demons-pigs!

  10. S:
    Genesis 20 – Abraham Deceives Abimelech
    Genesis 21 – The Birth of Isaac; Hagar and Ishmael Are Sent Away
    Genesis 22 – Abraham’s Faith Tested
    Luke 8:15 – “And the seeds that fell on the good soil represent honest, good-hearted people who hear God’s word, cling to it, and patiently produce a huge harvest.”

    Abraham did it again??? Did he not learn his lesson the first time? Was his 90 year old wife still that attractive? Oddly enough, this time the king did not punish him.

    Just as predicted, Ishmael was living “in open hostility” with Isaac. Even though Ishmael was not the child of God’s promise to Abraham, God honored Abraham by protecting him and prospering his descendants.

    It’s interesting that Isaac is repeatedly referred to as Abraham’s “only son”, as if Ishmael didn’t exist.

    The story of Abraham and Sarah conceiving a child in their old age hits close to home for me. Although I was in my late 30s and not my 90s when our younger son was born LOL, it happened after almost 18 years of infertility. This makes the story of Abraham nearly sacrificing Isaac unconscionable for me. If I thought I heard God tell me to harm my son, I would seek psychiatric treatment! Yet Abraham had walked in such close fellowship with God for so many years that he knew God’s voice. I suspect he also knew God’s heart, and was confident that God wouldn’t let him go through with killing Isaac. But what if he didn’t? When he told Isaac that God would supply the animal for sacrifice, was he speaking in faith, or was he lying so Isaac wouldn’t become suspicious?

    God, although I would never dream of literally killing either of my sons, help me to be willing to “lay them on your altar”, to put them in your hands. And help me to be an honest, good-hearted person who hears God’s word, clings to it, and patiently produces a huge harvest.

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