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Today is day #1 of the challenge given this weekend to step things up a notch and to get into a better study habit. The challenge was to read a book from the Gospels each week for the next four weeks; Matthew, Mark, Luke, John. Of course I did not plan on giving this challenge without joining in on it myself. This has been a great experience for me in the past, and I hardly ever walk away without something new to think about. Here and there I will post short tidbits I run across in my reading that I find interesting.

Family is Important

Today we are starting in Matthew 1 and right off the bat we learn about the family tree of Jesus. There is a ton of stuff that can be gleaned from this first chapter, but the really cool thing to see is that it traces the bloodline to Joseph, Jesus' adoptive father. This is incredible because it quite clearly shows the power of being adopted into a new family, such as we are when we decide to give our lives and everything in them to Jesus. We then have the right to be children of God, and enjoy everything that comes with becoming part of this family.

John, the crazy 2nd cousin from the boonies

I love the attitude of John when he interacts with Jesus. Here is a guy going toe to toe with the religious people of the time, and yet has ultimate humility when Jesus arrives. But the part of this chapter that really sticks out to me is the significance of the baptism. This is the precipice of Jesus' ministry. This was a deciding point of his life to do what he was sent to do, and when John is reluctant to baptize him, he says "We have to do this to fulfill all righteousness." He basically says, "This is when we kick it all off John, so don't hold back on me." Powerful stuff when you look down to road to what Jesus was to endure and you realize that at this moment he CHOSE to begin this journey.

Sermon on the mount

Jesus does not lack in wisdom and the ability to convey a message. The sermon on the mount is a great passage of scripture that lays out many foundational beliefs, but also knocks down some old mentalities. He says, "You are the salt of the earth, but if salt loses it flavor, how is it restored? It's not useful anymore!" He makes a pretty strong call to not lose your flavor. He then says to let your light sine before men, that they may see your good deeds, that it glorify our God in heaven. A little later on he follows up this thought with, "Don't do this stuff simply to be seen by others, because that is not the point and the only reward is for yourself." The bible is very clear that men look on the outward actions and appearances, but God knows your heart. So as we serve Him, take a second to check your motives. If it is for your own glory and your own gain, you need to step back and get priorities straight.

There is tons more in today's reading, and so much more in the days to come. I just want to encourage anyone taking part in this challenge to not simply read to get it over with, but to study things out and take a chance to think more about what you are reading. You will be surprised how much you miss out on when on auto-pilot.


About Me

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Curt Blanshan / Youth Pastor, Tech, Lover of Bacon

Crazy in love with my wife and best friend, father to a little ball of energy I call my son, and passionate about youth ministry. When I get time, I try to keep up on tech. Oh, and I love bacon.


  • Anonymous's picture

    Submitted by on September 19th 2011 //

    Well done good and faithful son=]

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