Friday, January 20, 2017

Ask and Ask Again

TODAY'S SPECIAL: Read: Genesis 18:20-33

TO CHEW ON: "Abraham said, 'Now that I have been so bold as to speak to the Lord, what if only twenty can be found there?'
He said, 'For the sake of twenty, I will not destroy it.'
Then he said, 'May the Lord not be angry, but let me speak just once more. What if only ten can be found there?'
He answered, 'For the sake of ten I will not destroy it.'” Genesis 18:31,32

One day three men came to visit Abraham. He welcomed them, washed their dusty feet and fed them a hot dinner. As they talked, Abraham realized that these visitors weren’t ordinary men. Two of them were angels and one was God Himself, in human form.

After their visit, as Abraham walked down the road with them God turned to him and said, “I’m going to tell you what I’m planning to do.” Then He explained how He had heard that the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah were sinful and violent. He said if the angels found that to be true, He would destroy Sodom and Gomorrah.

Immediately Abraham thought of Lot. He had moved near Sodom. So Abraham begged God to spare the city if there were good people found in it. Abraham asked God, would He please spare the city if there were fifty good people left in it?

God answered, “Yes.”

Abraham asked again, “What about forty-five?”

“Yes.”

“Forty? Thirty? Twenty?"

Three more times God said,“Yes.”

Still Abraham was worried. But should he test God's patience by asking still another time? He would ask just once more.
Abraham talking to the angels

Abraham was persistent and determined when he talked to God. We too can pray for others (intercede) like Abraham did.

PRAYER: Dear God, please help and protect and bless my family, my friends, my coach, my teachers, my pastor, my mayor, my member of parliament or senator, my prime minister or president. Amen


MORE:
Never-give-up prayers

Abraham didn’t easily give up in his praying. He kept asking and asking and asking.

Who is someone you’ve been praying for for a long time?

Learn from Abraham’s example, and don’t give up praying for that person!

*************
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

More than a Promise

TODAY’S SPECIAL: Read: Genesis 17:1-10

TO CHEW ON: "As for me, this is my covenant with you: You will be the father of many nations." Genesis 17:4

Twenty four years after God said to Abram “I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you,” Abram still didn’t have even one son, let alone a nation of sons. By the time he was 99 years old, can we blame him for thinking God had forgotten His promise?

Abram listening to God - Artist unknown
Abram listening to God - Artist unknown
But now God came to Abram again and told him, “I will confirm my covenant between me and you and will greatly increase your numbers.... You will be the father of many nations.”

God gave Abram more than a promise. He called it a covenant. It is the strongest promise anyone can make.

Circle the things a covenant IS (look it up in the dictionary if you need to).

promise         wish        contract        lie         

dream         pledge


To prove Abram and Sarai He really would do what He said, God changed Abram’s name to Abraham, and Sarai’s name to Sarah.

PRAYER: Dear God, I trust to keep Your promises even if it takes a long time. Amen.

MORE: Changing names

In Bible times, the meaning of a person’s name was important. Names told about people – what they did for a living and what they were like. Sometimes when a person’s life changed, their name was changed too.

Here are some Bible characters who were given new names. Match their old names with the new:

Look up the Bible references if you need help:
Abram – Genesis 17:5 | Sarai – Genesis 17:15 | Jacob – Genesis 32:28 |
Gideon – Judges 6:32 | Solomon – 2 Samuel 12:25 | Saul – Acts 13:9.


What’s your name?
What does it mean?
Does the meaning describe you?
I'm sure you like your name. But if you were to change it, what new name would you choose?
Why?

Answers

**********
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Can't Wait

TODAY'S SPECIAL: Read: Genesis 16:1-9

Abram looking at the stars - Artist unknown
Abram looking at the stars - Artist unknown

TO CHEW ON: 'Your slave is in your hands,' Abram said. 'Do with her whatever you think best.'” Genesis 16:6

What promises had God given Abram?
  • Genesis 12:2
  • Genesis 15:5

If Abram was to be a nation and have as many children as there are stars, he would first need at least one child. But year followed year and still Abram and Sarai had no children. They were old when they first moved. Now they were very old.

We can’t wait any longer. God needs help with this, thought Sarai. So she gave her servant Hagar to Abram to have a baby for her. Though this was a legal thing to do at that time and place, it was not God’s way.

Hagar got pregnant. But now she scorned Sarai. Sarai blamed Abram. Abram told Sarai to do as she liked with Hagar. So Sarai sent Hagar away into the desert.

An angel comforted Hagar. He told her she would have a son, Ishmael, but he wouldn’t get along with his brothers. And the angel told Hagar to go back to Abram and Sarai.

What the angel said to Hagar about Ishmael came true. Ishmael became the father of the Arab nations. Through the centuries they have fought with the Jews, who are the descendants of the child Abram and Sarai did finally have. How much better if Sarai would have waited for God to give Abram and her the child He had promised.

PRAYER: Dear God, help me always to wait for Your timing. Amen.

MORE: The Impatient Way

We too want things sooner rather than later. Which actions below may show impatience?

1. Buy lottery tickets to get rich.
2. Go to school to get an education.
3. Starve to lose weight
4. Borrow money so you can buy what you want now.
5. Get a job and save your money.
6. Use a credit card to buy things you don’t have cash to pay for.
7. Eat a little less at meals to lose weight.

Answers

***********
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

First Choice

TODAY'S SPECIAL: Read Genesis 13:1-17

Abram and Lot - Artist unknown
Abram and Lot - Artist unknown
TO CHEW ON: "So Abram said to Lot, 'Let’s not have any quarreling between you and me.... Let’s part company. If you go to the left, I’ll go to the right; if you go to the right, I’ll go to the left.'” Genesis 13: 8,9

Abram did take one member of his family along – his nephew Lot. Lot also had flocks and servants. Soon their servants were fighting over the same pastures. Abram didn’t want fighting. He had a meeting with Lot. “I think it’s time for our families to part,” he said.

Abram was the leader and the respected older person on this trip. He could have told Lot to graze his cattle on the scrubby hills while he (Abram) took his cattle to the green valley. Instead Abram let Lot have first choice about where he’d go.

What an easy decision for Lot. Of course he picked the lush green valley for himself. Besides being the best pasture land, it was near the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah where his wife could shop and he could get supplies.

If Abram was sorry about his decision to let Lot pick first, it wasn’t for long. After Lot left, God met Abram again. He told him that even though Lot had picked the best, God would someday give Abram and his family all the land he could see in every direction.

PRAYER: Dear God, please help me to put others first. Amen

SUPERSIZE IT: Generosity in Action

• Here's a Bible verse about being generous. You might want to memorize it. Then you will have God's promise to generous people at your fingertips next time you're tempted to be selfish.

Give and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. Luke 6:38.

• Try this:
Next time you’re tempted to choose the biggest and best for yourself– STOP!
- Let someone else have first choice.
or
- Choose the dessert that’s smaller, the bottom bunk, the back seat in the car or whatever tells the other person you’re giving them the best.














*************
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Faith Adventure

TODAY'S SPECIAL: Read Genesis 12:1-7

Abraham journeying into the Land of Canaan by Gustave Dore
Abraham journeying into the Land of Canaan by Gustave Dore
TO CHEW ON: "The Lord had said to Abram, “Go from your country, your people and your father’s household to the land I will show you....” So Abram went as the Lord told him." Genesis 12:1,4

People move from one home to another for many reasons. Sometimes they move to find work. Sometimes they move to be close to family. Sometimes they move to experience life in a different city. And sometimes they move just because God tells them to.

One day God talked to a man named Abram. (He was a man who was alive at about the same time as Job.) God told Abram to move – and he did, just because God said so.

He had to have a big faith in God to leave the country he lived in, the city he knew, and even his family. He was 75 when God asked him to do this. That's older than your grandparents! To make it even harder, God didn’t give him a map or a moving truck. He just told Abram and his wife Sarai to pack their stuff and go wherever He would show them.

Abram had herds of goats, flocks of sheep and camels. It wasn't a quick, easy move. Abram did take servants along. But he left most of his family behind.

God promised Abram some good things would happen as a result of his move. How many promises can you find in Genesis 12:2,3? Make a list.

PRAYER: Dear God, thank You when we move on Your instructions, we set out on a faith adventure. Amen.
Moving boxes

MORE: Moving

Tell or write about a time you moved. If you haven’t moved ask a friend to tell you about their move.

1. Why did you move?
2. How did you move?
3. Where did you move to?
3. What was good about your move?
4. What was hard about your move?
5. In what way was your move a faith adventure for you and your family?

Answers

*************
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Questions Answered?

TODAY'S SPECIAL: Read Job 42:1-16

Clouds reflecting the sun
TO CHEW ON: “I know that you can do all things; no purpose of yours can be thwarted.... Surely I spoke of things I did not understand, things too wonderful for me to know.” Job 42:2,3

After Job and his friends had spoken, God talked. He asked Job questions.
- “Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth?” (Job 38:4 Simplified Living Bible)
- “Have you found the springs from which the seas come?” (38:16 SLB)
- “Do you know where the gates of death are”? (38:18 SLB)
- “Where does the light come from and how do you get there?” (38:19 SLB)
- “Who gave the heart wisdom? Who gave knowledge to the mind?” (38:36 SLB)

...and on and on.

Do you know the answers to these questions? What would you have said if you were Job?

Actually, Job didn’t have much to say. “I am nothing,” he said. “How could I ever find the answers?” (Job 40:4 SLB).

By questioning Job this way God wasn’t asking him questions because He didn’t know these things. He was showing Job (and us) that as the creator of the world, He sees the big picture of beginnings and endings. He understands more than we do.

God didn’t tell Job (and He often doesn’t tell us) the reason for his suffering. But He did help Job understand he could trust an all-wise God to have plans that are good, and to make them happen in the best way.

PRAYER: Dear God, thank You that You know all things and can do all things. Amen

Job--recovered and wealthy again - Artist unknown
Job--recovered and wealthy again - Artist unknown
MORE: A Happy Ending
What finally happened to Job? Read the end of Job’s story in Job 42:10-17. Which things are not true?

1. Job’s brothers, sisters and friends came to visit and brought gifts.
2. Job never got better.
3. Job had more children.
4. Job became rich again with more sheep, camels, oxen and donkeys.
5. Job lived 140 more years.
6. Job was never a grandfather

Answers

*********
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Scriptures marked Simplified Living Bible (or SLB) copyright © 1971 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved. Simplified Living Bible, TLB, and the The Living Bible logo are registered trademarks of Tyndale House Publishers.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Why? Why?? Why???

TODAY'S SPECIAL: Read Job 2:1-13

Job and his friends - Artist unknown
Job and his friends - Artist unknown
TO CHEW ON: "When Job’s three friends Eliphaz... Bildad... and Zophar... heard about all the troubles that had come upon him they set out from their homes and met together by agreement to go and sympathize with him and comfort him." Job 2:11

At the next heavenly council meeting, Satan suggested that God should take His protection away from Job’s body. If he got sick, Satan was sure Job would curse God.

God gave permission. Soon Job was so ill his friends who came to comfort him hardly recognized him.

Job’s friends thought it was his fault he was sick. When Job insisted he hadn’t done anything wrong, they argued, “God always punishes sin. This sickness is your punishment for something bad you did. Confess your sin and you’ll get better.”

Finally a young friend, Elihu, spoke. He said maybe Job’s sickness wasn’t because of something bad he did. Maybe God was just trying to teach Job a lesson.

Of course none of this talk made Job feel any better. But he kept on trusting God anyway. Job said, “But he knows the way I take; when he has tested me, I will come forth as gold.” (Job 23:10)

PRAYER: Dear God, please help me to trust You even when things in my life don’t make sense. Amen.

MORE: No Answers
1. Tell about a time you suffered because you did something bad.
2. Tell about a time you suffered and you didn’t have a clue why.

Sometimes we just don’t have answers. In those times, we can keep on coming to God with our mixed up feelings and questions, just like Job did.

***********
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Job's very bad, terrible, no good day

TODAY'S SPECIAL: Read Job 1:6-22

Job hearing of his ruin by Gustave Dore

TO CHEW ON: "At this Job got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell to the ground in worship and said: '. . . The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised.'” Job 1:20,21

Sometime after the flood, a man named job and his family lived in the land of Uz. Job was a happy man. He had a wife and a large, healthy family. He was also rich with donkeys, sheep, oxen, camels, and servants. Then one day his good life fell apart. Match Job’s possessions with what happened to them: (Job 1:13-18)


What a horrible day for Job! One after the other, his servants came to him with news of robbers, fire, wind, calamity and death.

It wouldn’t surprise us to see Job feel sorry for himself, or full of fear, or angry enough with God to curse Him. But though Job was shocked and grieved (and did show his feelings by tearing his clothes and shaving his head - like the people of his time did), he didn’t curse God for his troubles. What did he say instead (Job1:21)?

PRAYER: Dear God, help me praise You when bad things happen, just like Job did. Amen.

MORE: Behind the Scenes

Before any of this happened to Job, we get a peek at a heavenly meeting (Job 1:6-12).
Draw the two characters who said the things in the speech bubbles.






Answers

************
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Human Towers

TODAY'S SPECIAL: Read Genesis 11:1-9

Skyscrapers silhoutted against the sky

TO CHEW ON: "Then they said, 'Come let us build ourselves a city, with a tower that reaches to the heavens, so that we may make a name for ourselves; otherwise we will be scattered over the face of the whole earth.'” Genesis 11:4

God was displeased with the people’s plan to build a tower. It wasn’t so much the building which displeased Him, but the attitude it showed. This tower plan showed pride. It was as if these people were saying, “Making this tower will prove we humans can do anything we are determined to do.”

God stopped the project. Which method did He use?
1. Sent an earthquake
2. Sent a plague of sickness
3. Confused the languages so people could no longer understand each other.
4. Caused the workers to go on strike.

In this way God reminded people of their human limits. We humans may be creative and ambitious and energetic and determined. But this story reminds us that God is greater than any human scheme or idea. If something is against His plan, He can shut it down in an instant.

PRAYER: Dear God, I want to honor and serve You with my life—not human pride and ambition. Amen

MORE: Modern Babel
After years of trying, there are still some human goals people have not been able to reach. Some are:
1. Explore all of space.
2. Create life.
3. Keep people from dying.
4. Stamp out disease.

- Pick one of the human goals that interests you, above, or name another.
- Find out from books, magazines and the internet some of the steps made to reach that goal.
- What do you think—will people someday achieve it? Explain why you think as you do.

Answers

************
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Everyday Life

TODAY'S SPECIAL: Read Genesis 8:15-22

Noah and his family leave the ark - Artist unknown
Noah and his family leave the ark - Artist unknown
TO CHEW ON: "As long as the earth endures, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night will never cease." (Genesis 8:22)

The flood was over. At last the animals and people could leave the ark!

Here they came, tumbling out of the doorway, taking deep breaths of fresh air, skipping, jumping, running, then galloping. They loved the feel of the sun on their backs and the breeze on legs and faces.

Best of all, God had told them there would be no more floods. Now life could get back to normal.

Though we’ll never have to go through a worldwide flood like Noah and his family did, we also live through things which disturb our everyday routine. These can be as frightening as having our house burn down or as fun as going on a vacation. But whether good or bad, there comes a time when we’re ready to get back to ordinary everyday life

Before you complain that that’s too boring, think of all the variety God has built into the repeats of nature. Match the opposites of everyday living on the lists below:


PRAYER: Dear God, thank You for day and night, and the seasons which make up my life on earth. Amen.

MORE: Covenant
God gave Noah a special sign that He would keep His promise never again to destroy the earth in a flood.
Rainbow

- Read about it in Genesis 9:13-15
- Can you name the order of the colors in a rainbow?
- Using books or the internet, find out how rainbows form in nature.

Answers

***********
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Water Water Everywhere

TODAY'S SPECIAL: Read Genesis 7:24-8:12

Noah welcoming the bird back to the ark - Artist unknown
Noah welcoming the bird back to the ark - Artist unknown

TO CHEW ON: "But God remembered Noah and all the wild animals and the livestock that were with him in the ark, and he sent a wind over the earth, and the waters receded." (Genesis 8:1)

Have you ever been stuck in the house for a week because of a snow-storm? Or perhaps you’ve been forced to leave home and stay in a school gym or church basement for a long time because your house was in the way of a forest fire, flood, or tornado. Whatever the reason, it’s hard to stay cooped up in a small space for a long time, isn’t it?

Imagine how Noah and his family felt after the ark’s door was shut and it began to rain. If rain had ever fallen on earth before, it had never come down like this! First the ground was covered. Then the ark began to float. If the ark would have had windows, Noah and his family would have seen first the treetops disappear under water, then the hilltops, then the mountaintops. Can’t you imagine them asking, “Will this never end?”

But it did. After 40 days and nights the rain stopped. After 150 days the water began to go down After 224 days the mountaintops showed again.

In the same way your problems have an end too. Your hard year of school finishes. You make friends in your new home. Your dad gets another job. You recover from a long illness. Just like God remembered Noah, He remembers you.

PRAYER: Dear God thank You for remembering me when I feel like something hard will never end. Thank You for sending Your help just in time. Amen.

MORE: Weather Calamity

1. What sorts of weather or natural disasters happen where you live?
Floods | Fires | Drought | Insect plagues | Earthquakes | Tsunamis | Tornados | Other _____

2. Have you lived through one of these?

3. What happened?

4. How did it end?

************
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Monday, January 9, 2017

Noah Faith

TODAY'S SPECIAL: Read: Genesis 6:14-22

Noah's Ark - Mural
This Noah's Ark mural was once in the children's entrance of my church.

TO CHEW ON: "Noah did everything just as God commanded him." (Genesis 6:22)

Imagine this: you and your family are the only people who love God on the whole earth!

People talk about you. They say things like “Have you heard about that Noah family? They’re no fun. All they care about is pleasing God!”

Then one day God tells you to build a big boat (the Bible calls it an ark). Then people talk even more: “Get a load of this. That crazy Noah is building a boat – a BIG boat. And there’s not even any water nearby.”

And then God tells you to bring pairs of all the birds, animals and ground creatures – insects and reptiles – into the boat.

Now people laugh even more and and point fingers: “That Noah nut-case is turning his boat into a zoo!!”


In spite of how strange this must have seemed to Noah’s neighbors (and maybe even to Noah and his family), we never read that Noah or his family argued with God or asked for an explanation. Instead they obeyed, trusting that God knew exactly what He was doing.

PRAYER: Dear God, please help me to have faith in You even when I don’t understand. Amen.

MORE: Ark Journal

Pretend you are one of the passengers on the ark (person or animal).

Write three journal entries about what it is like:

1. After just getting on board the ark.

2. In the middle of your time in the ark.

3. On the day you know you are going to leave the ark.

************
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Strong Noah

TODAY'S SPECIAL: Read: Genesis 6:9-14

Noah and sons build an ark - Artist unknown"Noah and Sons Build the Ark"

TO CHEW ON: "But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord. This is the account of Noah. Noah was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked faithfully with God." (Genesis 6:8,9)

Have you ever been the only person or family doing something, or NOT doing something? That’s what it was like for Noah and his family. While all the other people were sinning and living like they pleased, Noah was famous for something else. He had the reputation of being good. He was known as someone who pleased God.

Can you imagine how he must have been teased and called all kinds “Goody-goody” names? Some people probably plotted ways to try to get Noah and his family to do bad things. When there was a celebration or wild party in town, guess who wouldn’t be invited?

But Noah resisted the temptation to follow the crowd. Instead he stuck to his God-pleasing ways.

Which character qualities do you think Noah had?



PRAYER: Dear God, help me to have Noah’s courage to resist wrong living. Amen.

MORE: Strong You

Can you think of a time when you or someone from your family was the only person doing something, or not dong something? I'm sure it wasn't easy.

We all need help to stand alone. Memorize this verse now to help you remember who is with you and will help you next time you’re tempted to follow the crowd:

 No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it. 
~ 1 Corinthians 10:13

Answers


************
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Choices

TODAY'S SPECIAL: Read: Genesis 4:1-12

Cain and Abel - Gustave DoreDetail from "Cain and Abel Offering Their Sacrifices" by Gustave Doré

TO CHEW ON: "Then the Lord said to Cain, 'Why are you angry? Why is your face downcast? If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must rule over it.'” (Genesis 4:6,7)

God told Cain and Abel to sacrifice animals to Him. Cain and Abel both worshiped God by making sacrifices. But Cain disobeyed and offered fruit from the plants he had harvested. Abel obeyed and offered animals from his flock.

God was pleased with the animal sacrifice. He didn’t accept the plant sacrifice. He had told Cain what He wanted. Here are some things Cain could have done. Which one did he choose to do?

1. Bought an animal and sacrificed it.
2. Ignored God and made another sacrifice of his harvest.
3. Became so upset, he murdered the brother who pleased God.
4. Argued with God about why his plant offering was just as good as an animal offering.

Sometimes we don’t like to hear what God says to us. He may tell us ways we need to change. He may make us aware of people we’ve wronged, or remind us of things for which we should apologize. But God will never force us to do the right thing.

PRAYER: Dear God, please help me to choose Your right way. Amen.

MORE: Right Choices

Suggest good choices to make if you find yourself in these situations:

Boy with puzzled look on his face

1. You accidentally break Mom’s favorite mug.

2. You’ve forgotten all about the test teacher promised today.

3. You find a purse in the washroom of a mall. It has lots of money in it.

4. A bunch of girls in your class are bullying another girl.

5. You’re only half finished delivering your papers, and you’re due at baseball practice.

Answers


***********
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.