Hi. Many Christians follow a pattern of personal Bible reading in their daily devotions. Probably you do too. I have one, please may I share it with you?
In my personal Daily Devotions I spend time reading the New Testament and Old Testament, according to the day of the month. (see also https://www.stevekuban.com/daily-devotions)
For example, from Proverbs:
Proverbs 1 on the first day of the month, and Proverbs 2 on the second day of the month, up to Proverbs 31 on the 31st day of the month. Then I start again.
I read 5 Psalms each day of the month. So on day 1 I read Psalm 1-5. On day 2 I read Psalms 6-10, etc. up to Psalm 150 on day 30. Then the next month I start all over again. I've been doing this (on and off) for about 38 years.
I read other books of the Bible this way too. For example this month I'm reading Luke, so on the first day of the month I read Luke 1, second day Luke 2, and so forth. I do the same with the Book of Acts (which is also written by the apostle Luke) and Revelation. (Other months I may read other books, Old and New Testament, as the Lord directs me.)
Whether you use the Western calendar or the Jewish calendar, the principle is still the same. The important thing is, we should read systematically, each day of the month, and each day of the year. "For man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God." So we need our daily spiritual food too!
I always read these three key sections in the Old Testament, again based upon the day of the month:
1) the Torah
2) the Prophets; and
3) the Psalms
You can see a complete list of these "portions" at www.stevekuban.com/Bible-and-Torah-Portions
Today is the 24th day of the Jewish month Shevat (coinciding with January 30th this year), so today I read:
and the 24th quintet (grouping) of five daily Psalms (that is Psalm 116-120; because 5 x 24 = 120)
I'm always amazed how the Lord uses the daily timings to bring home His truth! Today several scriptures "jumped out" at me while reading. Check these out:
Yeshua (having just risen from the dead) meets two disciples along the road to Emmaus and tells them:
"Foolish men, and slow of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken! 26 Didn’t the Messiah have to suffer these things and to enter into his glory?” 27 Beginning from Moses and from all the prophets, He explained to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself.
Then later Yeshua himself stood among them [the eleven disciples in Jerusalem], and said to them (Luke 24:44),
“This is what I told you, while I was still with you, that all things which are written in the Torah of Moses, the Prophets, and the Psalms, concerning Me must be fulfilled.” (Luke 24:44)
The Apostle Paul presents his defense before Felix the Governor saying, "14 But this I confess to you, that after the Way, which they call a sect, so I serve the God of our fathers, believing all things which are according to the Torah, and which are written in the Prophets." (Acts 24: 14)
Put simply, the Torah, the Prophets, and the Psalms all speak of Yeshua. In fact Yeshua Himself used the "Torah, Prophets and Psalms" to prove that He is the promised Messiah. Later so did the apostles Peter, James, John, Stephen, Paul and others to both Jews and Gentiles (eg Peter on the Day of Pentecost in Acts 2, Stephen in Acts 8, Peter to Cornelius in Acts 10, Paul to Felix in Acts 24, etc)
Therefore since the Torah, Prophets and Psalms were of such vital importance to the early Messianic believers in Yeshua, it's very important that all believers today spend time reading the Torah, the Prophets, and the Psalms, to understand the basis of our faith in Yeshua, and how He fulfills all the Old Testament prophecies of the coming Messiah, fulfilling all things in the Old Testament that were written concerning Him! And understanding these scriptures also will help us concerning God's plan for His people from the time of Abraham, to the birth of Isaac and Jacob, the promised land, the children of Israel's deliverance from Egypt, all the way up to the restoration of the state of Israel in 1948, and into the coming days leading into the Millenium. It's all there in the sacred scriptures!
How important are the Old Testament scriptures? Well, all the New Testament writings find their basis and origins in the Old Testament writings. Remember that during Yeshua's ministry on earth (and for many years following His resurrection) there was no New Testament in existence, for it had not yet been written but was in the process of being written over many years.
So what Scriptures did the Jewish people have during Yeshua's time? What they had, from the time of Moses onward, were the Torah, the Prophets, and the "Writings" (Psalms and poetic books). Jews call this the "Tanakh" (which basically comes from Torah, Prophets (Nevi'im) and Ketuvim (Writings). For more details about this please check out https://hebrew4christians.com/Scripture/scripture.html
Today we begin Torah portion #24, from Leviticus 1 to 6, which is all about sacrifice. We know that Yeshua is our sacrificial Lamb. Hallelujah! And we too are to offer ourselves to Him, as living sacrifices.
Here is today's Torah portion #24
As you read these scriptures, here is a beautiful chorus of consecration called "Let Me Be A Sacrifice": (https://youtu.be/wrrzMrGxMLU) which I sang at the Body of Christ Christian Church in New York (Woodhaven) on August 14, 2016, the Jewish day of remembrance known as Tisha B'Av.
Let me be a sacrifice
Holy and acceptable
Let me be a sacrifice
Consumed in Your praise
Let me be a sacrifice
Holy and acceptable
Let me be a sacrifice
Worshiping Your Name!
May this song express the desire of your heart to give yourself as a living sacrifice to our Lord and Saviour, to do His purposes with your life!
Sincerely in Messiah,
Dr. Steve Kuban
Here are the Portions for Jan 31st, Shevat 25
PS: A personal word about using the Jewish calendar for Devotions:
Lately for my Daily Devotions I've been following the Jewish calendar, usually 30 days each month, going from new moon to new moon. This cycle of months began when YHVH told Moses to start counting: "This shall be the beginning of months for you" just prior to the first Passover and Israel's deliverance from Egypt:
1 The Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt, saying, 2“This month shall be to you the beginning of months. It shall be the first month of the year to you. (Exodus 12:1-2)
One year later YHVH commanded that the Tabernacle of Moses be set up exactly one year later,on day one of the second year. If you were following my email yesterday you will see that we read "Portion 23."
1 The Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 2 “On the first day of the first month [of the second year] you shall raise up the tabernacle of the Tent of Meeting. (Exodus 40:1)
I prefer to base my daily devotional readings around the Jewish calendar (rather than the Gregorian). For over 30 years I used the Gregorian calendar (January through December) for my Devotions, but in the past three or four years I've been reading according to the Jewish calendar of days and months. It's been SO helpful. YHVH has confirmed to me over and over the value of doing this, because critical days in recent history occurred on the very day I was reading according to the Jewish calendar. (See for example how He gave me the song "Leviathan" on Election Day 2016 in the USA, from Isaiah 27, which speaks of how YHVH would punish Leviathan the crooked snake, and restore America. Then that same portion Jews read again on Inauguration Day 2017, Jan. 20th, when all over the world (Exodus 1-6 where God raised up Moses to be the Deliverer) at Sundown 6pm in Jerusalem, which happened to be the very exact hour President Trump took the Oath of President of USA.)
All the annual Jewish Festivals YHVH commands in His Word are observed according to the Jewish calendar. (Even the date of Easter coincides with Passover, which is why Easter on the Gregorian calendar moves from one particular date to another each year. Thus Easter is a "Moveable Feast" or "Moveable Festival" because it "moves" around from day to day, year to year, in relationship to the Gregorian calendar. But if one follows the Jewish calendar, Passover doesn't move around at all, it always occurs on the same day (see Numbers 24:16“‘In the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month, is the Lord’s Passover. 17 On the fifteenth day ... shall be a feast of Unleavened bread") as well as Pentecost (Shavuot), Tabernacle (Sukkot), the Day of Atonement, etc. So that's why I follow the Jewish calendar for my personal devotions. It just works better for all the appointed Festivals of the LORD.
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