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Feb 9, 2024

EXODUS 19-20:
Yesterday we heard of God satisfying the thirst of the Israelites by commanding Moses to hit a rock. Israel defeated the Amalekites. And Jethro brought Moses’ wife and sons to him and gave him good advice.

Note that in most English translations, God often talks of Himself in what we might term the royal fashion— as ‘The LORD’, and then as ‘He’ (instead of ‘I’, and ‘Me’). (The capital letters L O R D indicate that the Hebrew actually has his name, Yahweh.) In many of the world’s languages, it is ungrammatical to speak of oneself in the third person, so translations into those languages must use ‘I, the Lord’ and ‘Me’. Even in English it is highly unusual for anyone to use the royal form. So if you are following along in the NLT, you will notice that I regularly alter the text so that God speaks of himself in the first person. I do this for the sake of naturalness and clarity for those who are listening.

JOB 40:
Yesterday God continued to challenge Job with questions too hard for humans to answer. In today’s chapter, starting at verse 15, we read about the Behemoth. The GNT footnote tells that some identify this as a hippopotamus. But the description of Behemoth's tail in verse 17 doesn't fit with a hippopotamus. Maybe a sea crocodile would be a better choice? But they don’t eat grass. It is perhaps better to simply say that the Behemoth and Leviathan are legendary or mythical sea creatures.

LUKE 1:
Yesterday we finished 2nd Peter with his advising us to get ready for the Lord's return.

Luke— as we will find out in other NT books, was the physician who was a traveling companion of Paul. His goal was to write a well-researched and ordered account of Jesus' life— as he says in his formal prologue.  

Robert Maddox states:
“[Luke] writes to reassure the Christians of his day that their faith in Jesus is no aberration, but the authentic goal towards which God’s ancient dealings with Israel were driving.” More Muslims have become followers of Christ through reading Luke’s Gospel than from reading other three, because of its emphases.

Luke is the longest book of the NT, and if we put Luke’s two books together, they form 27% of the NT.

Luke wrote to Theophilus, who may have been a Roman dignitary, but since the name means “Lover of God” Luke may have intended his book for all of us who love God. Luke's explanations show that he was writing to the Greeks, and so he appropriately brings out that Christ came for all mankind— Jews and Gentiles. Luke also highlights the roles played by women. A major example is the material from his interviews with Mary, the mother of Jesus. Luke includes more poetry than the other Gospels, tells more about Jesus praying, and chronicles Jesus' parables and teaching.

NLT Translation notes:
Exo. 19:7 “You must not misuse the name of the LORD your God. [I, the LORD//The LORD] will not let you go unpunished if you misuse [my/his] name.
11 For in six days [I//the LORD] made the heavens, the earth, the sea, and everything in them; but on the seventh day [I/he] rested. That is why [I, the LORD,//the LORD] blessed the Sabbath day and set it apart as holy.
12 “Honor your father and mother. Then you will live a long, full life in the land [that I,//0] the L ORD your God [am/is] giving you.
[It is a feature of Hebrew that God frequently uses the honorific form where He refers to Himself in the third person. This is ungrammatical in many of the world’s languages, and is rather borderline ungrammatical even in English. Note the example in Job below.]
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Job 4:9 Are you as strong as [Me//God]? Can you thunder with a voice like [mine/his]?
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Luk. 1:2 They used the eyewitness reports circulating among [0//us from] the early disciples.
Luk. 1:38 “ I am the Lord’s servant. May your word to me be fulfilled.”

61 They said to her, “[But//There is] no one among your relatives who has that name.”
[See the note in NET about the use of ‘But’ here.]
67 His father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit and [{spoke/gave} this prophecy//prophesied]:
80 [John grew up//And the child grew] and became strong in spirit; and he lived in the wilderness until he appeared publicly to Israel.

 

Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.