D. Bible

Day 1)  Six Days Shalt You Labor  

Exodus 23: 12 “Six days do your work, but on the seventh day do not work, so that your ox and your donkey
may rest, and so that the slave born in your household and the foreigner living among you may be refreshed.

In the 10 Commandments, God directed that people have one day to rest.  People in the past had to work very
hard, and working without time to rest and worship leads to physical exhaustion and also emotional problems.  

As Christians, we are no longer under the Old Covenant. Jesus challenged the Jewish people's ideas about
what was proper to do on the Sabbath, and Paul made it clear that observing the Sabbath (Saturday) was not a
requirement for a Christian. Interestingly enough, while all the other commands in the 10 Commandments are
found in some form in the New Testament, the requirement to observe the Sabbath (Saturday) is not.  

Many Christians still think it is wise to have one day for rest and worship, however. Talk with your family what
your denomination teaches about Sunday worship and rest.

Day 2) Clean and Unclean

Matt 23: 27  [Jesus said:] Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited
sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men's bones, and of all
uncleanness.

sepulchre = tomb

In the Old Testament, God used many concrete examples to show the Jewish people that some things were
right (clean) and others were wrong (unclean.) He wanted to impress upon them that He was holy, and that they
should be holy, too.

God gave commands separating animals into clean and unclean species.  
He commanded that people with certain illnesses live apart from the main community so that they would
 not infect others.
He commanded that people be careful when touching dead bodies, and not to touch a dead body if it was not
necessary.
The people were required to wash themselves at certain times.
He even gave commands what to do about clothing or houses that had mold in them!

When Jesus came, he taught the people a deeper meaning.  He taught that a person can be very religious. He
can pray and fast, eat the right "clean" foods, wear the right clothes, and perform the required ceremonial
washings, but still be "unclean" inside. Only Jesus can come into our lives and make us clean INSIDE.

Day 3) Diligently Following Every Good Work

1 Tim 5: 9 Let not a widow be taken into the number under threescore years old, having been the wife of one
man.
10 Well reported of for good works; if she have brought up children, if she have lodged strangers, if she have
washed the saints' feet, if she have relieved the afflicted, if she have diligently followed every good work.

Widows in the ancient world were often left without financial support or legal protection if they had no son to
provide for them. This may be why Jesus, as the eldest son, entrusted Mary to the care of John.  

The early Church realized the need presented by Christian widows, and eventually they had to establish some
rules for receiving charity.  She had to be threescore years old (a score = 20);  she had to have brought up
children (if God blessed her with any).  She had to have practiced hospitality- symbolized in washing the saint's
feet.  She had to have practiced charity and good works. This was the ideal mature Christian woman of the 1st
Century, and it should not be different today.


Day 4) Legacy of a Godly Example

2 Tim 1: 3 I thank God, whom I serve from my forefathers with pure conscience, that without ceasing I have
remembrance of thee in my prayers night and day;  4 Greatly desiring to see thee, being mindful of thy tears,
that I may be filled with joy;5 When I call to remembrance the unfeigned faith that is in thee, which dwelt first in
thy grandmother Lois, and thy mother Eunice; and I am persuaded that in thee also.

Eunice was a woman in a difficult position. Her husband was apparently a non-believer, but even so she and
her mother diligently taught young Timothy the scriptures.  (Of course, at that time the "scriptures" were what
we would call the Old Testament.)  Timothy was apparently receptive to his mother and grandmother's
teaching, and he became a strong pillar of the early Christian church.

Neither Eunice nor Lois probably every dreamed that their names would be read thousands of years after they
had gone to be with the Lord, but even today we can look at them and be encouraged to plant seeds in
someone's life.

What people have influenced you in your Christian walk?  Have you ever thanked God for them?


Day 5) Wash me and I will be whiter than snow.

Psalm 51: 7 Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.

Psalm 51 is the sinner's heartfelt plea to God for mercy. David knew that he was guilty; his sin was "ever
before" him. Yet even as he contemplated the depths of his iniquity, David had faith in God:  God could wash
him clean again.   

In David's day, people offered animals as sacrifices for sin.  While these animals' deaths could cover sin, they
could not really  take it away. (Heb. 10: 4)   Today, we have a better sacrifice. The Son of God himself died for
us,  and his blood cleanses us from all sin.  (1 John 1:7)


Day 6)   Come Let us Reason Together

Isaiah 1:18 Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be
as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.

In the Old Testament, God often summoned his prophets- like Isaiah- to speak to the people when they had
gone astray. If you read the history of the Jewish people, you know that they went through times when the
people worshipped God, followed by times when they did evil and served false gods.  God got tired of the
idolatry, the oppression of the poor and widows, the hypocrisy, and the injustice and He called upon the people
to repent.

God offers us the same invitation today.  No matter how dark our sins, Jesus' blood can cleanse them and
make us right with God the Father.  We may still bear scars from our sinful life; and we may still have to pay a
price to society if we have committed crimes, but God can forgive us and we can be assured of a place in
Heaven.


Day 7) Jesus Transfigured

Mark 9: 2 And after six days Jesus taketh with him Peter, and James, and John, and leadeth them up into an
high mountain apart by themselves: and he was transfigured before them.  3 And his raiment became shining,
exceeding white as snow; so as no *fuller on earth can white them.

*A fuller was a person who cleaned (or "scoured") wool and woolen cloth, making it whiter.  He also shrank the
woolen cloth so that it was thick.

Mark 9: 2 After six days Jesus took Peter, James and John with him. He led them up a high mountain. They
were all alone. There in front of them his appearance was changed. 3 His clothes became so white they shone.
They were whiter than anyone in the world could bleach them. (NIV)

Peter, James, and John were blessed to be witnesses to this incredible event. They were permitted to see
Jesus glorified even before His death and resurrection.  John the Beloved saw a similar vision of Jesus (Rev.
1).  

How different Jesus looked from the humble carpenter who walked the dusty roads!  Even Peter seems to have
babbled a little when he saw Jesus as He really was!  We often think of Jesus as our friend and brother, which
He certainly is.  It is good sometimes, though, to realize how glorious and powerful our Savior is, and how much
he left behind to come to Earth for our sake.