The Great Adventure Catholic Bible Study http://biblestudyforcatholics.com 73 Books. One Story. Your Story. Wed, 04 Mar 2015 05:15:10 +0000 en-US hourly 1 90 Day Challenge – Day 63 http://biblestudyforcatholics.com/day-63/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=day-63 http://biblestudyforcatholics.com/day-63/#comments Wed, 04 Mar 2015 05:15:10 +0000 http://biblestudyforcatholics.com/?p=2309 Just Getting Started? Read what you’ve missed and check out Bible reading resources

Bible Time Period: Divided Kingdom

Israel split into rival kingdoms and fell into idolatry: help me to choose your kingship over other loves.

Reflection

2 Kings picks up where 1 Kings left off, with God’s judgment on Ahab’s son Ahaziah through the prophet Elijah.  Elijah’s mantle — and a double portion of his spirit — will fall (literally!) on his disciple Elisha when the older prophet is taken up to heaven in a whirlwind.  This is where “chariots of fire” imagery comes from in the popular imagination.

Elijah is an important figure in salvation history.  He will appear years later with Moses on the Mount of Transfiguration, where they speak to Jesus.  Together they represent the Law (Moses) and the Prophets (Elijah).

Today’s Reading

II Kings 1-4

Today’s Question

How do the miracles Elisha does in Israel (the northern kingdom) show God’s grace and His desire to bless those who follow him?

Join the discussion below!

]]>
http://biblestudyforcatholics.com/day-63/feed/ 27
90 Day Challenge – Day 62 http://biblestudyforcatholics.com/day-62/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=day-62 http://biblestudyforcatholics.com/day-62/#comments Tue, 03 Mar 2015 05:15:21 +0000 http://biblestudyforcatholics.com/?p=2307 Just Getting Started? Read what you’ve missed and check out Bible reading resources

Bible Time Period: Divided Kingdom

Israel split into rival kingdoms and fell into idolatry: help me to choose your kingship over other loves.

Reflection

Back in chapter 17, we read that King Ahab “did more to anger the LORD, the God of Israel, than any of the kings of Israel before him” (vs. 33).  Notice in that sentence that even though Israel has rejected God’s rule, he still is “the God of Israel.” In chapter 20, God sends a message that they would know that he is the LORD (20:29).  Any time you see “LORD” in all caps in the Bible, it is the covenant name of God, “YHWH” or “I AM,” that is meant.  This is the Name by which God revealed himself to Moses by the burning bush.

In chapter 21, Ahab can’t confiscate Naboth’s land because the land belongs to God, who granted each family a permanent inheritance that was to be preserved.  The means by which he obtains the land tells us a great deal about this king.

Ever since chapter 16, you’ve been reading about kings of Israel.  Jehoshaphat, whose account is sandwiched between Ahab and Ahab’s son Ahaziah in chapter 22, is a king of Judah.

Today’s Reading

1 Kings 20-22

Today’s Question

On what note does 1 Kings end?

Join the discussion below!

]]>
http://biblestudyforcatholics.com/day-62/feed/ 39
90 Day Challenge – Day 61 http://biblestudyforcatholics.com/day-61/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=day-61 http://biblestudyforcatholics.com/day-61/#comments Mon, 02 Mar 2015 05:15:46 +0000 http://biblestudyforcatholics.com/?p=2305 Just Getting Started? Read what you’ve missed and check out Bible reading resources

Bible Time Period: Divided Kingdom

Israel split into rival kingdoms and fell into idolatry: help me to choose your kingship over other loves.

Reflection

In spite of the evil done by the kings of Judah, God promised in 1 Kings 15:4-5 to maintain a “lamp” for David in Jerusalem forever.  This symbolizes the permanence of the Davidic dynasty in the city where God has chosen His name to dwell.  The situation is different in the northern kingdom of Israel.  There a long succession of kings from a number of different families and factions follows Jeroboam.  The first eight of these northern kings are described in 1 Kings 15:25 – 16:34.   Pay attention to the kind of men they are and to what Israel is like during their reigns.

Today’s Reading

1 Kings 16-19

Today’s Question

God sent prophets to carry his message of warning and love to Israel.  One of the greatest was Elijah (chs. 17-19).  What is God’s message to Israel through Elijah?

Join the discussion below!

]]>
http://biblestudyforcatholics.com/day-61/feed/ 53
A Sonnet of Michael http://biblestudyforcatholics.com/sonnet-michael/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=sonnet-michael http://biblestudyforcatholics.com/sonnet-michael/#comments Sun, 01 Mar 2015 20:06:12 +0000 http://biblestudyforcatholics.com/?p=5540 “Defending us in Battle,” What’s that mean?
I don’t see any evidence of war:
No swords or shields or fire that I’ve seen,
So what is all of this protection for?

Do wicked snares abound, just out of sight?
How often are you casting into hell,
Those prowling spirits which you daily fight:
A once proud race that sadly (through pride) fell.

My life is comf’trble, is this a fluke?
Or is it only so because of you
As you enforce God’s heavenly rebuke
Through all the noble work your armies do.

I ponder now, with all I do not see
How frightening (without you) my life could be.

]]>
http://biblestudyforcatholics.com/sonnet-michael/feed/ 0
90 Day Challenge – Day 60 http://biblestudyforcatholics.com/day-60/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=day-60 http://biblestudyforcatholics.com/day-60/#comments Sun, 01 Mar 2015 05:15:48 +0000 http://biblestudyforcatholics.com/?p=2301 Just Getting Started? Read what you’ve missed and check out Bible reading resources

Bible Time Period: Divided Kingdom

Israel split into rival kingdoms and fell into idolatry: Help me to choose your kingship over other loves.

Period Preview

Welcome to the third month of the 90-day Bible challenge!  We’re coming to the home stretch as far as time goes, and things are going to speed up as six time periods remain.  It’s worth taking a few moments to get our bearings in the Story.

During the Royal Kingdom period, Saul united Israel under a single ruler, then David expanded the kingdom and Solomon built it up.  At the height of its glory, Israel must have seemed like a near-fulfillment of God’s promises to Abraham:  they possessed most of the strategic land of Canaan and were in a position to bless the surrounding nations.  God dwelt among them in a magnificent temple in Jerusalem.  Their king was the wisest and wealthiest man on earth.  The nation was blessed and the people prospered.  Most of all, God had promised to establish David’s throne — and his line through Solomon — forever.  What could go wrong?

What indeed.  At the close of that period, we read that God promised to tear the bulk of the kingdom from Solomon’s son because of Solomon’s sin.  The resulting split will launch Israel into the period of the Divided Kingdom.  The first few chapters you read will frame the entire period:  The ten tribes to the north will rebel against Solomon’s son and reject his rule over them.  The result will be two separate kingdoms.  The one to the south will be called Judah; it will be ruled over by kings in David’s line from the royal city of Jerusalem.  The breakaway kingdom to the north, called Israel, will be ruled over by a succession of dynasties from its capital, Samaria.  Elsewhere in the world, the balance of power will shift from Egypt to Assyria around 900 BC.  Take note when you see Assyria mentioned; it and successive powers to the north of Canaan will have a dramatic impact on the future history of God’s people.

The story of the Divided Kingdom is told in 1 King 12-22 and in 2 Kings.  You will notice that after describing the division itself, the narrative jumps back and forth between Israel and Judah so that some sense of chronology is maintained.  The account is organized according to the reigns of the many kings.  Each time you read that someone new is on the throne, pay attention to whether the king is of Judah (southern kingdom – David’s royal line – Jerusalem) or Israel (north – various dynasties – Samaria).  The distinction is important because it is the southern kingdom, Judah, and its royal line through which the promised messiah will come.

If you have trouble keeping the kingdoms straight, you might find it helpful to draw a small crown next to the start of the reign of each king of Judah.  But don’t worry about remembering all the details.  The first time through, it is enough to get the flavor of what is going on in each of the two kingdoms.  Under each reign: do they follow God, or not?  What is the result?

Today’s Reading

1 Kings 12-15

Today’s Question

What dilemma does the location of Jerusalem pose for Jeroboam?  How does he solve it and with what result?

Join the discussion below!

]]>
http://biblestudyforcatholics.com/day-60/feed/ 26