Check out all the previous Esther readings here.
Esther Reading Plan | Week 1 | Day 2
Take thirty seconds to be silent. Be still and listen to yourself breathing. This will help you to be present to hear from God. After this moment of silence, thank God for the opportunity to meet with Him and ask Him to speak to you.
Bible Reading: Genesis 2:15-17; 3:1-8
Read these verses three times slowly.
The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it. And the Lord God commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.” …
Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?”
The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’”
“You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman. “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”
When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it.Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves.
Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the Lord God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the Lord God among the trees of the garden.
Reflection & Questions
Yesterday, we read that God was delighted in His creation. It was very good. Creation was perfect. Adam and Eve were one with each other and they enjoyed a close relationship with God.
Today, we read how that all went wrong and how sin and brokenness entered into the world. At some point sin entered the heavenlies and some of the angels rebelled against God, led by Satan. Satan, in the form of a serpent, then goes after the apple of God’s eye. Instead of trusting God, inexplicably Adam and Eve broke the one boundary God set up for them and they ate from the tree of knowledge of good and evil. This led to their shame and their hiding from God. The very good had become very bad.
The Bible does not tell us how sin and brokenness got passed onto us all; simply that it did. For example, Paul tells us “sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned.” (Romans 5:12). While we might not understand how it spread, we can see evidence of it everywhere. And we don’t have to look far; we just have to look at ourselves. We want to do good, we even have a conscience reminding us of what is good, and yet we fall short again and again. We see creation and revel in its beauty, but then see natural disasters and know this is not how it should be. But saddest of all, we distrust our God. The one who delighted in creating us. Who called us “very good” and gave us blessing after blessing. Who made us on purpose for a purpose. Yet we hide from Him. We ignore Him. We deny Him. It’s inexplicable. But it is clear and present evidence that we are broken. And we need fixing.
- Where is brokenness showing up in your life right now? Talk to God about that.
Pray in response to today’s reading.
You might use this song today to worship Jesus today:
Prepare to Meet with Jesus
Go to your quiet place. Make sure there are no devices around that will distract you. Pray and ask God to help you listen to Him. Ask Him to help you understand what you read.
Bible Reading: Joshua 24:24-25, 27
Read these verses three times slowly.
Then the people said to Joshua, “We will serve the Lord our God. We will obey him.”
On that day Joshua made a covenant for the people. There at Shechem he reminded them of its rules and laws.
“Look!” he said to all the people. “This stone will be a witness against us. It has heard all the words the Lord has spoken to us. Suppose you aren’t faithful to your God. Then the stone will be a witness against you.”
Reflection & Questions
Have you ever been really excited to do something . . . until it was actually time to do it? One summer, when I was a kid, my dad told my sister and me we could dig a fort in the backyard. We were VERY excited. We got the shovels and went to work. When the square hole was about 2 inches deep, we started to get tired. We took a little break and went back to work. Then, when the hole was about 6 inches deep, we needed another break. We worked for a few days, digging a little at a time. But the sun was hot, and the ground was hard, and when the hole was about two feet deep, we filled it with water and decided to use it as a wading pool.
Sometimes good things are hard. The Israelites were excited to obey God. They knew he would take care of them and that He wanted good things for them. Joshua knew that it would be hard. He set up a stone, called a memorial stone, to help them remember. The Israelites often used memorial stones to remember things.
Joshua warned the people how important it was to keep their promise. Rocks can’t testify in court, but the rock reminder would help the people know that they did promise God they would obey.
- Do you think the Israelites kept their promise always to obey?
- Do you remember the covenant we talked about yesterday? What would happen if they didn’t keep the covenant?
- Now they had a reminder of their promises. Do you think that helped them obey? Would it help you obey?
Thank God for always keeping His promises. Ask Him to help you keep your promise to read the Esther reading plan. Thank Him for forgiving you when you forget to obey or break a promise. Ask Him to help you do a better job of being obedient.
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