Reading for Today: Genesis 37:1–38:30

Reading for Today:

Genesis 37:1–38:30
Psalm 9:11-20
Proverbs 3:31-35
Matthew 13:1-30

Genesis 37:3, 4 Overt favoritism of Joseph and tacit appointment of him as the primary son by the father conspired to estrange him from his brothers. They hated and envied him (vv. 4, 5, 11) and could not interact with him without conflict and hostility. Joseph must have noticed the situation.

Genesis 37:36 Potiphar. He was a prominent court official and high-ranking officer in Egypt, perhaps captain of the royal bodyguard (see 40:3, 4). His name, a most unusual grammatical form for that period, either meant “the one whom the god Ra has given” or “the one who is placed on earth by Ra,” making it a descriptive epithet more than a personal name.

Matthew 13:3 parables. Parables were a common form of teaching in Judaism. The Greek term for “parable” appears 45 times in the LXX. A parable is a long analogy, often cast in the form of a story. Before this point in His ministry, Jesus had employed many graphic analogies (see 5:13–16), but their meaning was fairly clear in the context of His teaching. Parables required more explanation (see v. 36) and Jesus employed them to obscure the truth from unbelievers while making it clearer to His disciples (vv. 11, 12). For the remainder of His Galilean ministry, He did not speak to the multitudes except in parables (v. 34). Jesus’ veiling the truth from unbelievers this way was both an act of judgment and an act of mercy. It was “judgment” because it kept them in the darkness that they loved (see John 3:19), but it was “mercy” because they had already rejected the light, so any exposure to more truth would only increase their condemnation.

DAY 19: Why are some events in Matthew in a different order from the order in Mark or Luke?

In general, Matthew presents a topical or thematic approach to the life of Christ. He groups Jesus’ teaching into five major discourses:

The Sermon on the Mount (chaps. 5–7)
The commissioning of the apostles (chap. 10)
The parables of the kingdom (chap. 13)
The childlikeness of the believer (chap. 18)
The discourse on His second coming (chaps. 24; 25)
Matthew makes no attempt to follow a strict chronology. A comparison of the synoptic Gospels reveals that he freely placed things out of order. He was dealing with themes and broad concepts, not laying out a timeline. Mark’s and Luke’s Gospels follow a chronological order more closely.


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