Friday Bible Study News from October 6, 2017
On October 6 we had a mighty fine discussion in Bible Study. We began by taking a look at the first verse of Hymn 534 in the Episcopal Hymnal. It repeats the phrase, “God is working his purpose out, as year proceeds to year.” The passage has strong connection to what we refer to as the “Plan of God”, also “The Golden Thread.” This has helped us to make connections between the Hebrew Bible and the Christian Bible (Old and New Testaments). We know that the Plan of God and creation within it are on-going divine projects in which we participate as co-creators with God.
There are many gifts in the Abraham cycle of readings. Today we began what scripture calls, “The Story of the Family of Jacob.” We have read and pondered the Abrahamic blessing: that God will give land to the family of Abraham and they will be his people and He will be their God. We are reminded of this several times and can revel in its proclamation as we are members of the family of Abraham and as such carry the promise – and the God – tocarry it forward, “as year succeeds to year” until the time when the knowledge of God will “cover the earth as water covers the sea.” Another gift is being shown that humans show weakness when we are faced with “wrestling” with God Jacob/Israel wrestles with people and with the divine even as we do on a daily basis. But Jacob knows that he is supported and protected by God. He reminds God of this in a direct prayer that he initiates. His relationship with the deity differs from that of Abraham and Isaac. Jacob addresses God through his own doing, not as a response to an action of God.
And so we come to the Story of Joseph. Today we went through Chapters 37 and 38. This is the story of the dreams of Joseph, and the selling of him to a caravan that takes him to Egypt to be sold again. This sets us up for the Exodus and the addition of new names to the family list.
For next time:
- Does Joseph seem more humble in the telling of the dreams? What has changed?
- How has God come into the story?
- We have talked about God’s Time. How is this illustrated by the tale of Joseph?
- What is significant about Verse 14?
- How does this show about how the Hebrews thought about themselves and their God?
- The first verse tells us about what has been going on in Jacob’s household. What it is about?
- How do you account for the way Joseph greets the brothers?
- Explain verse 24.