picture of ancient king hatshepsut www.atozmomm.com

BSF Study Questions Matthew Lesson 2, Day 5: Matthew 2:19-23

SUMMARY OF MATTHEW 2:19-23

An angel of the Lord appeared again to Joseph after Herod had died and told them to return to Israel. Archelaus, Herod’s son, followed Herod on the throne of Judea. Joseph was afraid to return. Joseph was warned in a dream so he went to Galilee to a town called Nazareth, fulfilling the prophecy of Jesus being called a Nazarene.

BSF STUDY QUESTIONS LESSON 2, DAY 4: MATTHEW 2:13-18

13 ) Archelaus, Herod’s son, followed Herod on the throne of Judea. Joseph was afraid to return. Consequently, Joseph was warned in a dream so he went to Galilee to a town called Nazareth, fulfilling the prophecy of Jesus being called a Nazarene.

14a ) The Bible foretold the King would come from Nazareth.

b ) In truth, all of us come from unexpected places since no place is truly more significant than another. Anything good can come from anywhere.

15 ) In every way. God has always guided me and protected me throughout all of the events of my life.

CONCLUSIONS BSF STUDY QUESTIONS LESSON 2, DAY 4: MATTHEW 2:13-18

God draws us to Him one step at a time. The journey of our faith doesn’t happen by leaps and bounds; it’s in the little faithful doings when we say “Yes, Lord” when we grow until one day, we are His.

END NOTES BSF STUDY QUESTIONS LESSON 2, DAY 4: MATTHEW 2:13-18

map of ancient galilee and egypt www.atozomm.comAgain, we see “child” mentioned first in reference to this event, emphasizing Jesus’s importance over others.

Archelaus, Herod’s son, was just as cruel as his father, which is why Joseph was hesitant to return. He killed indisciminantly, too. He ended up being replaced as ruler because of his incompetency.

God directs Joseph to settle in Galilee in the town of Nazareth, knowing that those people would need Jesus. Nazareth was an insignificant little town that has a not-so-stellar reputation. Here, Jesus, the King of the World, would come forth. Jesus who stood for the everyman and was for every man would be raised as no one special. That means that we all can start from nowhere and achieve great things with God.

God and Jesus’s glory will never be snuffed out. If you continue on God’s path, yours won’t either. Take his hand, and walk with him today!

Contact me with questions today!

bsf study of matthew www.atozmomm.com

When to Expect Postings for BSF Study of Matthew

Hey all!

If you’ve been around a while, you know I usually post the lessons for the year’s study early. This is because many BSF groups in other countries that don’t celebrate Labor Day start a week earlier. I will be continuing this tradition again.

You can expect BSF postings to begin Sept 6th for the Study of Matthew with BSF Lesson 1, Day 1.

Every day this week, I’ll do an overview and some fun facts to get you all ready.

Can’t wait!

God bless!

god renames abraham bsf genesis www.atozmomm.com

BSF Lessons for the Study of Matthew Available Online

Bible Study Fellowship (BSF) has loaded all of the lessons for BSF’s Study of Matthew online.

As long as you are enrolled in a class, you will have access.

To find your lessons, go to https://www.mybsf.org/

To join a class, either in-person or online, go to https://www.bsfinternational.org/find-a-group

More information on Bible Study Fellowship online to come!

joseph's death www.atozmomm.com

BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 29, Day 5: Genesis 50:22-26

Summary of Genesis 50:22-26:

Joseph died at age 110 and lived to see the third generation of Ephraim’s children. Joseph told his brothers that God will come to take them to the Promise Land. He made them swear to carry his bones out of Egypt and take him with them. He was embalmed in Egypt.

BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 29, Day 5: Genesis 50:22-26

16) God will come to take them to the Promise Land.

17) Joseph never doubted God and His promises. He knew the Israelites would be taken back to the Promised Land when the time was right.

18) Both died in faith surrounded by their family. It was a long journey, but God and His ways brought them both to Him. They were both honored and embalmed, and both will be buried in the Promise Land.

Conclusions BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 29, Day 5: Genesis 50:22-26

Great ending to a life well lived.

End Notes BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 29, Day 5: Genesis 50:22-26

Joseph was led and blessed by God his entire life. He was 56 when Jacob died, and none of the details of Joseph’s live is recorded in scripture. We can presume that Joseph continued to lead the people of Egypt and his family. He lived 93 of his 110 years in Egypt. He was foreigner most of his life, but he was faithful to God throughout, and was rewarded for it.

It is said that Joseph was never buried in Egypt. His bones/coffin stood as a testament to the Israelites of the future of the Promise Land. Joseph would be taken out of Egypt by Moses to the Promise Land for burial in 400 years time. (Exodus 13:19)

Some promises of God take a long time to fulfill. The book of Genesis concludes with Joseph’s death — a death that looks forward to the future.

learning to raise livestock genesis chapter 4 bsf www.atozmomm.com

BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 27, Day 5: Genesis 46:31-47:12

Summary of Genesis 46:31-47:12:

Joseph advises his family to tell Pharaoh that they are shepherds so that they can be allowed the land of Goshen and will be detestable to the Egyptians who despise shepherds.

Joseph tells Pharaoh that his family has come from Canaan to live in Goshen and be shepherds. Joseph chose 5 of his brothers to tell Pharaoh the same thing. Pharaoh gives them the best land in Goshen and asks for help with his flocks if any of them have any special talents.

Jacob was presented before Pharaoh who asks him how old he is. Jacob answers 130 years. He blesses Pharaoh and then they get settled. Joseph provides them with food.

BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 27, Day 5: Genesis 46:31-47:12

12) Joseph tells his brothers what to say to Pharaoh

13) The years he was called by God to go to to the Promised Land. He also knows that his real home is with God in heaven.

14) He blesses Pharaoh. He’s humble about his lifetime.

Conclusions BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 27, Day 5: Genesis 46:31-47:12

Let’s not forget that Joseph is the whole reason Jacob and his family were saved.  “Joseph settled his father.”  “Joseph provided food.” Pharaoh accepted Jacob and the family only because of Joseph. If they had just been regular Hebrews looking for relief from the famine, they would have been turned away. But because of Joseph (and God) they were saved–as was God’s will.

The Egyptians considered sheep unclean; hence, everyone who worked with sheep were unclean.

Goshen was what is basically the Sinai Peninsula today.  Today it is a desert land but in ancient times it was renown for it’s grazing of animals.  Succinct history on Goshen HERE.

Let us also not forget that although Pharaoh is presented as a great, benevolent ruler in the Bible, he was all-powerful. He put Joseph in charge to save his people, not God’s. His people were also very poor and worked hard so he could live in luxury. We don’t see the poverty here of the vast majority of the people.

End Notes BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 27, Day 5: Genesis 46:31-47:12

Joseph makes sure his family is provided for. He is their advocate, as Jesus is ours. However, not long after Joseph’s death and presumably the current pharaoh, the Israelites are made slaves (Exodus 1:8-10).

Pharaoh knows how God has blessed Joseph and probably presumes God is with Jacob as well. He accepts the blessing despite the Pharaoh being considered a god himself. Pharaoh knows that he needs God’s help, too.

Joseph you could say is now the head of the family as he is the sole provider of their food and well-being. It is presumed that every time Jacob or his family had a need, they went to Joseph who made sure they were taken care of.

judah begs for benjamin's life www.atozmomm.com

BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 26, Day 5: Genesis 44:18-34

Summary of Genesis 44:18-34:

Judah pleads for Benjamin’s life, in the end offering to take his place because he cannot face Jacob and tell him that Benjamin has been taken from him like they did when they sold Joseph into slavery. Judah explains to Joseph that Benjamin is the only son left of his mother and Jacob loves him deeply. He recounts the whole conversation with Jacob of taking Benjamin so that he (Joseph) would sell them grain. He says that Jacob will die if they return without Benjamin.

BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 26, Day 5: Genesis 44:18-34

13) Judah cannot bear to see the misery that would come upon Jacob and the fact that Jacob would die in sorrow. Just the fact that Judah does not want Benjamin taken says it all. Here, his actions speak louder than his words. All of the brothers could have left Benjamin. Instead, they stand up for him.

14) Personal Question. My answer: Age and experience has contributed to my growth. Unsure the evidence, however.

15a) Regret is when you feel sadness, repentance, or disappointment over an event that has happened or been done to you. Repentance is a feeling of regret for past wrongs and a commitment to change for the better. The Eerdmans Bible Dictionary defines repentance as “a complete change of orientation involving a judgment upon the past and a deliberate redirection for the future.” Sorrow leads to repentance. Regret is the first step; repentance follows regret and is the act of change.

b) Just the fact I want to repent is God’s grace. Many people feel bad over what they’ve done, but don’t resolve to change. Resolving to change so when the situation presents itself again is repentance and that lead to salvation. “Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret.” 2 Corinthians 7:10 So my answer is all the time since I sin all the time.

Conclusions BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 26, Day 5: Genesis 44:18-34

I love how the brothers pass this test of Joseph’s of caring. What if they hadn’t? The story of God’s people would have been different, indeed.

End Notes BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 26, Day 5: Genesis 44:18-34

Many Bible scholars call Judah’s appeal moving. Others call it pathetic. Either way, it’s one of absolute desperation. Once again, Judah is putting the blame on someone else, saying this all started because Joseph asked them questions. All they wanted was to buy some grain. He once again says that Joseph is torn to pieces. I’m wondering how Joseph is taking this. I’m surprised he never asked what happened to him/Joseph to see if he could get the truth from them.

Joseph asks “What is this you have done?” giving the brothers a chance to repent and explain themselves. This is the same question God asks Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden and of Cain when he killed Abel.

You can see now that Judah does care about Jacob’s feelings when before they didn’t, even though Jacob favored both Joseph and now Benjamin. I can only imagine that Benjamin was even more favored now that Joseph is gone than before.

Since Judah is the one who volunteers to exchange his life for Benjamin’s, we see sacrificial love, which usually only occurs under the umbrella of love and is a sign of transformation (John 13:34). Since he was the one who wanted to sell Joseph  (Genesis 37:26-27), we know for sure that his heart at least has changed.

In these two chapters, we see how the brothers have matured. They stay with Benjamin, they don’t care he gets more food, they offer themselves as slaves, and they care for Jacob. They also know all of this is happening because of their sin against Joseph (Genesis 44:16) , and they accept that. This is a lot of growth, indeed.

joseph dines with his brothers www.atozmomm.com

BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 26, Day 3: Genesis 43:15-34

Summary of Genesis 43:15-34:

The brothers did as Jacob said. They hurried to Egypt with Benjamin. Joseph invited them to eat with him. The brothers were frightened of this action. They thought Joseph was going to attack them and seize them as slaves and take their donkeys as punishment for the silver in their bags they did not pay the first time.

The brothers approached the steward in an effort to give the money back. The steward said it was a gift to them from God. Then Simeon was brought out. The brothers prepared for a meal and retrieved the gifts to give Joseph. When Joseph arrived, they gave him the gifts and bowed low to him. He asked them if Jacob was still alive, and they replied yes.

Joseph was very moved to see Benjamin. They were probably very close as brothers. He had to excuse himself to weep. Joseph returned, and the food was served. Joseph ate separately from his brothers because the Egyptians would not eat with Hebrews. Joseph sat them in the order of their birth, and the brothers were astonished. Benjamin got 5 times the amount of the others.

joseph's brothers go to buy grain www.atozmomm.com

BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 26, Day 3: Genesis 43:15-34

7) Joseph invited them to eat with him. The brothers were frightened of this action. They thought Joseph was going to attack them and seize them as slaves and take their donkeys as punishment for the silver in their bags they did not pay the first time.

8 ) The steward knows of their God/God/Joseph’s God. I’m wondering if this is because of Joseph’s position and if his story is known to others.

9) I think Joseph was trying to give them a hint, but the brothers missed it.

10) Wow. Too many to pinpoint. I would say everything in my life has led to this point and God continues to lead. It’s only fear if you perceive it as that. In my life, it seems everything is unexpected.

Conclusions BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 26, Day 3: Genesis 43:15-34

You think that when the brothers were seated in the order of their birth that they would begin to wonder what was up. That they would truly LOOK at Joseph and recognize him. It’s obvious that something is going on here, how Joseph asks after Jacob; how he invites them to dinner, etc. It’s a puzzle that I’m surprised not one of the brothers tried to figure it out. I bet Simeon doesn’t care; he is just glad to be out of jail.

End Notes BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 26, Day 3: Genesis 43:15-34

The brothers wonder why they are being invited to Joseph’s house. Still, they don’t put it together. Joseph mirror Jesus here in wanting us to eat (Revelation 3:20).

The brothers wanted to be transparent and do the right thing by giving back the silver. The steward said no; it is a gift from God. As promised, Simeon is released.

Joseph shows nothing but kindness to his brothers, again, like Jesus. The brothers bow down again like in Joseph’s dreams out of need, as well as honor and respect. We come to God in the smae way.

Perhaps he saw Rachel, his mother, when he looked at Benjamin.

Interestingly, the Egyptians would not eat with Joseph either, despite his status above them. Egyptians thought of themselves as gods and above all other societies. God, in His infinite wisdom, would use this as well. Because the Egyptians despised everything as foreign, including imports, they would have nothing to do with the people of God/Jacob’s family.

Jacob’s family would be left in peace to grow and multiply to the millions without intermixing with the pagan culture around them. This kept them safe from turning from God. If Jacob’s family had stayed in Canaan, this might not have been the case. God protected the Israelites, using Joseph to do so. Amazing!

The mathematical odds of getting the brothers’ birth order right was 1 in a million.

Joseph was testing his brothers’ hearts again, seeing how they would react to Benjamin getting more food, and seeing if Benjamin even made it to Egypt or he would be sold as well.

leah has 4 sons by god's grace www.atozmomm.com

BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 19, Day 5: Genesis 29:31-35

Summary of Genesis 29:31-35:

God gave Leah children because she was unloved. Rachel was barren. Reuben was named because Leah was miserable, his name meaning “he has seen my misery.” Simeon was named cause she was unloved, his name meaning “one who hears.” Levi means “attached.” Judah was named for “praise” of the Lord.

BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 19, Day 5: Genesis 29:31-35

14) Jacob to love her.

15) God shows us all kindness in difficult times. God shows kindness by continuing to be present, to guide, to lead, to be merciful, to forgive, and to give us hope through his son, Jesus.

16) She grows in her faith like we all do and realizes God is there for here when Jacob, her husband, is not emotionally.

17) God is faithful.

Conclusions BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 19, Day 5: Genesis 29:31-35

I continue to be baffled as to why Jacob still sleeps with Leah besides the physical/procreation side. He knows Rachel is hurt by this, so why do it? Another sin since sex is meant as bonding as well as procreation. Sadly, sex is physical for all too many men today.

BSF notes takes the position that Jacob is fulfilling his duty by giving Leah an opportunity to bear children for status purposes. I can see this for maybe one or two kids, but to continue to have sex with her for all those years and watch his supposed beloved, Rachel, suffer heartache with each successive birth is nothing but selfishness in my eyes.

BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 19, Day 5: Genesis 29:31-35

Here we see Leah forced into a marriage with a man who will never love her, and she suffers because of it, hated by her sister, Rachel, yet she can’t change it. It’s not like she could leave or get a divorce. God loves her as he blesses her with children, so important in those times.

Isaiah 54:5 “For the Maker is your husband — the Lord Almighty is his name…”

Reuben is the first born son of Jacob, yet he would not inherit the promise.

We see Leah’s hope shift to God instead of Jacob, which she would never have.

Note the priests (the tribe of Levi) and the royal line (the tribe of Judah) comes from Leah, as well as the Messiah (from Judah). Leah was blessed for her circumstances and for her faith, indeed.

jacob is tricked to take leah as his wife www.atozmomm.com genesis 29

BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 19, Day 4: Genesis 29:21-30

Summary of Genesis 29:21-30:

Jacob asks for Rachel’s hand once his 7 years is up. Laban throws a feast, but when evening came he substitued Leah for Rachel. He gave Leah a servant named Zilpah. When morning came, Jacob realized he had been tricked. When he confronts Laban, Laban says the custom is to take the older daughter first. Jacob agrees to keep Leah as his wife, but he then marries Rachel in exchange for 7 more years of labor. Rachel’s servant is Bilhah.

BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 19, Day 4: Genesis 29:21-30

9) Laban may have been worried no one would marry Leah is she was uncomely. He also knew he could get free labor from Jacob basically for another 7 years. When he confronts Laban, Laban says the custom is to take the older daughter first.

10) Leah is now married to someone who does not love her. Rachel is favored. Rachel has to share her husband. No one trusts Laban.

11) Jacob deceived Esau out of the blessing, and he pretends to be Esau to receive Isaac’s blessing. Galatians says that Jacob sowed a sinful nature and reaped destruction because of it.

12) Just because you are forgiven does not mean you can change what happened. You cannot undo anything in this world. Actions reap other actions. You are responsible for your choices.

13) Unsure. It’s hard to see this from my eyes.

Conclusions BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 19, Day 4: Genesis 29:21-30

I’m wondering how this went down and how both women felt about this. Leah was forced to marry someone who did not want her. Rachel was forced to allow her sister to take her place that night. I’m wondering too how Jacob did not notice this before he slept with her. Assuming there was no light, and no one said anything or Jacob would have recognized her voice. Still, the logistics of this deceit baffle me. You would think someone would know here.

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End Notes BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 19, Day 4: Genesis 29:21-30

Leah would have been veiled until they were alone together and with no artificial light….still….

Neither girl had a say in this deceit. It was all Laban. Leah may have been happy, sad, angry. We just don’t know.

The morning must have been a shock. Everyone was angry probably — all because of original sin — Jacob’s.

Many Bible scholars believe that Laban’s excuse was made up and was no custom or law at that time.

Polygamy was a sin of ignorance in Abraham’s day. The example was Adam and Eve, but there was no law against more than one wife. Here Jacob is forced to have 2 wives in order to save Leah from a life of solitude, but it is still a sin.

Jacob most definitely reaped what he had sown, and while Jacob was the younger chosen by God to receive the blessing, he married the older instead.

God disciplined Jacob by allowing this to happen as a consequence of his previous sins. Still, Laban is guilty of sin as well. He used his own daughters for free labor and to ensure Leah was married.

The second 7 years was probably a lot tougher than the first. This was definitely a harder pill to swallow, especially considering Jacob’s age.

Laban gets what he wants initially, but, like always, he’ll get his later. God gives people what they want even when they use sin as a means, but they still have consequences.

In this time, Leah was not defiled and could not be married to another. Jacob was obligated to keep her. That being said, I don’t see how he was obligated to sleep with her and have children with her, especially if he didn’t love her EXCEPT for God’s mandate to be fruitful and multiply. Still, I don’t see how he continued doing this.

Having multiple wives was not uncommon in this culture at that time.

jacob agrees to work for rachel for 7 years genesis 29 www.atozmomm.com

BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 19, Day 3: Genesis 29:15-20

Summary of Genesis 29:15-20:

Laban asks Jacob after a month what his wages were be (in sum, what he actually wants and why he is here). Jacob responds that he will work 7 years for Rachel’s hand in marriage. Leah was the older daughter, she is described as having weak eyes, while Rachel is lovely in form and beautiful. The time flew for Jacob so in love was he.

BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 19, Day 3: Genesis 29:15-20

6) Apparently Jacob was working for Laban for free.

7a) It taught him patience to have what he wants, and it’s a fair price for his work.

b) Jacob could have offered to pay Laban; instead, he works for what he wants, which is the opposite today in this world of instant gratification

8a) Proverbs says God disciplines those He loves for His reasons and their good. Romans 8:28 is the famous verse of all things work for your good. James tells us that we are tested to develop perseverance. Peter tells us that grief proves our faith to be genuine and results in praise, glory, and honor when Jesus is revealed. We are filled with joy becaues of our faith.

b) Stay the course. Keep praying. Keep working. Keep following His lead despite the hardships and the setbacks.

Conclusions BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 19, Day 3: Genesis 29:15-20

I think Jacob’s mistake is not leaving as soon as he could, like Abraham’s servant did with Rebekah. It gave Laban time to plot.

man in desert www.atozmomm.com

End Notes BSF Study Questions Genesis: Lesson 19, Day 3: Genesis 29:15-20

While on the surface, Laban seems to be generous, he’s seen the good work Jacob could do and wants to see what Jacob wants in exchange for continued work.

Bible scholars debate what Leah’s eyes being weak or delicate actually mean. Does it mean she has a problem with her vision? Does it mean she has no life to them like her sister? Is it just a nice way to say she wasn’t pretty? Either way, we can guess that if Rachel is more beautiful than Leah that there was a sibling rivalry between the two.

Jacob offers to work for 7 years for Rachel as a dowry. This is over-the-top generous, which was probably his downfall. It showed how much he really wanted Rachel, which Laban would exploit next. Yet it shows his love for her. He was willing to wait. This is a long time in today’s culture and rare is this “I want it now” culture seen today. Time flew for him too.

We can surmise that Jacob and Rachel probably did not see each other much. First, in these times and culture, women did not spend time with men and were often relegated to the home, whereas the men worked the fields. Second, there were no date nights back there. Social propriety was strictly enforced to ensure no one questioned the woman’s purity. However, since both were shepherds, they could have spent some time together and got to know each other more.

Jacob is now 77 years old at this time and he kept sheep for Laban Hos. 12:12 Rachel was very young, maybe even barely marriageable age, which may be another reason Jacob wanted to wait.