Daily Devotional

by Larry Stockstill

From a tiny seed comes a mighty tree that provides shade and refuge for the animals of the world. In the same way, the Kingdom of God spreads from small and insignificant beginnings.

Joseph is an example of such a seed. From one solitary life, the Holy Spirit provided a huge and fruitful tree that brought life to the world. Under Joseph's direction during the seven years of plenty, "the granaries were filled to overflowing" (Genesis 41:49). During the time of famine, people came from many lands for the provision Joseph had stored (Genesis 41:56-57).

God desires to bless you, like He did Joseph, with an abundance to be put into a storehouse for others. Such abundance represents your overflow finances, seed that God will place in your hands to bless the world. Be faithful, prepare a storehouse bank account for missions, and ask God for seed. He will turn your "mustard seed" into a mighty tree for the nations!

Genesis 41:17-42:17

17 Then Pharaoh said to Joseph, “In my dream I was standing on the bank of the Nile,S ver 118 when out of the river there came up seven cows, fat and sleek, and they grazed among the reeds.S ver 219 After them, seven other cows came up—scrawny and very ugly and lean. I had never seen such ugly cows in all the land of Egypt.20 The lean, ugly cows ate up the seven fat cows that came up first.21 But even after they ate them, no one could tell that they had done so; they looked just as ugly as before. Then I woke up.

22 “In my dream I saw seven heads of grain, full and good, growing on a single stalk.23 After them, seven other heads sprouted—withered and thin and scorched by the east wind.24 The thin heads of grain swallowed up the seven good heads. I told this to the magicians, but none of them could explain it to me.S ver 8

25 Then Joseph said to Pharaoh, “The dreams of Pharaoh are one and the same.S Ge 40:12 God has revealed to Pharaoh what he is about to do.S Ge 40:8; Isa 46:11; Da 2:4526 The seven good cowsS ver 2 are seven years, and the seven good heads of grain are seven years; it is one and the same dream.27 The seven lean, ugly cows that came up afterward are seven years, and so are the seven worthless heads of grain scorched by the east wind: They are seven years of famine.S Ge 12:10

28 “It is just as I said to Pharaoh: God has shown Pharaoh what he is about to do.S Ge 40:829 Seven years of great abundancever 47 are coming throughout the land of Egypt,30 but seven years of faminever 54; Ge 45:6, 11; 47:13; Ps 105:16 will follow them. Then all the abundance in Egypt will be forgotten, and the famine will ravage the land.ver 56; S Ge 12:1031 The abundance in the land will not be remembered, because the famine that follows it will be so severe.32 The reason the dream was given to Pharaoh in two forms is that the matter has been firmly decidedDa 2:5 by God, and God will do it soon.S Ge 40:8

33 “And now let Pharaoh look for a discerning and wise manver 39 and put him in charge of the land of Egypt.S Ge 39:934 Let Pharaoh appoint commissionersEst 2:3 over the land to take a fifthGe 47:24, 26; 1Sa 8:15 of the harvest of Egypt during the seven years of abundance.ver 48; Ge 47:1435 They should collect all the food of these good years that are coming and store up the grain under the authority of Pharaoh, to be kept in the cities for food.ver 4836 This food should be held in reserve for the country, to be used during the seven years of famine that will come upon Egypt,ver 56; Ge 42:6; 47:14 so that the country may not be ruined by the famine.”

37 The plan seemed good to Pharaoh and to all his officials.Ge 45:16; Est 2:4; Isa 19:1138 So Pharaoh asked them, “Can we find anyone like this man, one in whom is the spirit of GodOr of the gods?”Nu 27:18; Dt 34:9; Da 2:11; 4:8-9, 18; 5:11, 14

39 Then Pharaoh said to Joseph, “Since God has made all this known to you,Da 2:11; 5:11 there is no one so discerning and wise as you.ver 3340 You shall be in charge of my palace,1Ki 4:6; 2Ki 15:5; Isa 22:15; 36:3 and all my people are to submit to your orders.S Ge 39:9; Ps 105:21-22; Ac 7:10 Only with respect to the throne will I be greater than you.Est 10:3

Joseph in Charge of Egypt

41 So Pharaoh said to Joseph, “I hereby put you in charge of the whole land of Egypt.”ver 43, 55; Ge 42:6; 45:8, 13, 26; Est 8:2; Jer 40:7; Da 6:342 Then Pharaoh took his signet ringS Ge 24:22; Est 3:10; 8:2, 8 from his finger and put it on Joseph’s finger. He dressed him in robes1Sa 17:38; 18:4; 1Ki 19:19; Est 6:8, 11; Da 5:29; Zec 3:4 of fine linenEx 25:4; Est 8:15; Da 5:29 and put a gold chain around his neck.Ps 73:6; SS 4:9; Isa 3:18; Eze 16:11; Da 5:7, 16, 2943 He had him ride in a chariotGe 46:29; 50:9; Isa 2:7; 22:18 as his second-in-command,Or in the chariot of his second-in-command; or in his second chariotEst 10:3 and people shouted before him, “Make wayOr Bow down!”Est 6:9 Thus he put him in charge of the whole land of Egypt.S ver 41

44 Then Pharaoh said to Joseph, “I am Pharaoh, but without your word no one will lift hand or foot in all Egypt.”S Ge 37:8; Est 10:2; Ps 105:2245 Pharaoh gave JosephEst 2:7 the name Zaphenath-Paneah and gave him Asenath daughter of Potiphera, priestEx 2:16 of On,That is, Heliopolis; also in verse 50Eze 30:17 to be his wife.ver 50; Ge 46:20, 27 And Joseph went throughout the land of Egypt.

46 Joseph was thirty years oldS Ge 37:2 when he entered the service1Sa 8:11; 16:21; Pr 22:29; Da 1:19 of Pharaoh king of Egypt. And Joseph went out from Pharaoh’s presence and traveled throughout Egypt.47 During the seven years of abundancever 29 the land produced plentifully.48 Joseph collected all the food produced in those seven years of abundance in Egypt and stored it in the cities.S ver 34 In each city he put the food grown in the fields surrounding it.49 Joseph stored up huge quantities of grain, like the sand of the sea;S Ge 12:2 it was so much that he stopped keeping records because it was beyond measure.

50 Before the years of famine came, two sons were born to Joseph by Asenath daughter of Potiphera, priest of On.S ver 4551 Joseph named his firstbornGe 48:14, 18, 20; 49:3 ManassehManasseh sounds like and may be derived from the Hebrew for forget.Ge 46:20; 48:1; 50:23; Nu 1:34; Dt 33:17; Jos 4:12; 17:1; 1Ch 7:14 and said, “It is because God has made me forget all my trouble and all my father’s household.”52 The second son he named EphraimEphraim sounds like the Hebrew for twice fruitful.Ge 46:20; 48:1, 5; 50:23; Nu 1:32; 26:28; Dt 33:17; Jos 14:4; Jdg 5:14; 1Ch 7:20; 2Ch 30:1; Ps 60:7; Jer 7:15; Ob 1:19 and said, “It is because God has made me fruitfulS Ge 17:6 in the land of my suffering.”

53 The seven years of abundance in Egypt came to an end,54 and the seven years of famineS Ge 12:10 began,Ac 7:11 just as Joseph had said. There was famine in all the other lands, but in the whole land of Egypt there was food.55 When all Egypt began to feel the famine,Dt 32:24; 2Ch 20:9; Isa 51:19; Jer 5:12; 27:8; 42:16; 44:27 the people cried to Pharaoh for food. Then Pharaoh told all the Egyptians, “Go to Joseph and do what he tells you.”S ver 41; Jn 2:5

56 When the famine had spread over the whole country, Joseph opened all the storehouses and sold grain to the Egyptians,S ver 36 for the famineS Ge 12:10 was severe throughout Egypt.S ver 3057 And all the world came to Egypt to buy grain from Joseph,Ge 42:5; 47:15 because the famine was severe everywhere.S Ge 12:10

Joseph’s Brothers Go to Egypt

42 When Jacob learned that there was grain in Egypt,Ac 7:12 he said to his sons, “Why do you just keep looking at each other?”He continued, “I have heard that there is grain in Egypt. Go down there and buy some for us,Ge 43:2, 4; 44:25 so that we may live and not die.”ver 19, 33; Ge 43:8; 47:19; Ps 33:18-19

Then ten of Joseph’s brothers went down to buy grainver 10; Ge 43:20 from Egypt.But Jacob did not send Benjamin,S Ge 35:18 Joseph’s brother, with the others, because he was afraid that harm might come to him.ver 38So Israel’s sons were among those who went to buy grain,S Ge 41:57 for there was famine in the land of Canaanver 13, 29; Ge 31:18; 45:17 also.S Ge 12:10; S Dt 32:24; Ac 7:11

Now Joseph was the governor of the land,S Ge 41:41; S Ne 5:14 the person who sold grain to all its people.S Ge 41:36 So when Joseph’s brothers arrived, they bowed down to him with their faces to the ground.S Ge 33:3As soon as Joseph saw his brothers, he recognized them, but he pretended to be a stranger and spoke harshly to them.ver 30 “Where do you come from?”S Ge 29:4 he asked.

“From the land of Canaan,” they replied, “to buy food.”

Although Joseph recognized his brothers, they did not recognize him.Ge 37:2Then he remembered his dreamsS Ge 37:7 about them and said to them, “You are spies!ver 14, 16, 30; Dt 1:22; Jos 2:1; 6:22 You have come to see where our land is unprotected.”ver 12

10 “No, my lord,S Ge 37:8” they answered. “Your servants have come to buy food.S ver 311 We are all the sons of one man. Your servantsver 13; Ge 44:7, 9, 16, 19, 21, 31; 46:34; 47:3 are honest men,ver 15, 16, 19, 20, 34 not spies.ver 31

12 “No!” he said to them. “You have come to see where our land is unprotected.”ver 9

13 But they replied, “Your servantsS ver 11 were twelve brothers, the sons of one man, who lives in the land of Canaan.S ver 5; Ge 46:31; 47:1 The youngest is now with our father, and one is no more.”ver 24, 32, 36; S Ge 37:30, 33; 43:7, 29, 33; 44:8; Jer 31:15

14 Joseph said to them, “It is just as I told you: You are spies!S ver 915 And this is how you will be tested: As surely as Pharaoh lives,1Sa 17:55 you will not leave this place unless your youngest brother comes here.S ver 11; Ge 43:3, 5, 7; 44:21, 2316 Send one of your number to get your brother;ver 15 the rest of you will be kept in prison,ver 19 so that your words may be tested to see if you are telling the truth.S ver 11 If you are not, then as surely as Pharaoh lives, you are spies!S ver 917 And he put them all in custodyS Ge 40:4 for three days.

17 So Pharaoh told Joseph his dream. “In my dream,” he said, “I was standing on the bank of the Nile River,18 and I saw seven fat, healthy cows come up out of the river and begin grazing in the marsh grass.19 But then I saw seven sick-looking cows, scrawny and thin, come up after them. I’ve never seen such sorry-looking animals in all the land of Egypt.20 These thin, scrawny cows ate the seven fat cows.21 But afterward you wouldn’t have known it, for they were still as thin and scrawny as before! Then I woke up.

22 “In my dream I also saw seven heads of grain, full and beautiful, growing on a single stalk.23 Then seven more heads of grain appeared, but these were blighted, shriveled, and withered by the east wind.24 And the shriveled heads swallowed the seven healthy heads. I told these dreams to the magicians, but no one could tell me what they mean.”

25 Joseph responded, “Both of Pharaoh’s dreams mean the same thing. God is telling Pharaoh in advance what he is about to do.26 The seven healthy cows and the seven healthy heads of grain both represent seven years of prosperity.27 The seven thin, scrawny cows that came up later and the seven thin heads of grain, withered by the east wind, represent seven years of famine.

28 “This will happen just as I have described it, for God has revealed to Pharaoh in advance what he is about to do.29 The next seven years will be a period of great prosperity throughout the land of Egypt.30 But afterward there will be seven years of famine so great that all the prosperity will be forgotten in Egypt. Famine will destroy the land.31 This famine will be so severe that even the memory of the good years will be erased.32 As for having two similar dreams, it means that these events have been decreed by God, and he will soon make them happen.

33 “Therefore, Pharaoh should find an intelligent and wise man and put him in charge of the entire land of Egypt.34 Then Pharaoh should appoint supervisors over the land and let them collect one-fifth of all the crops during the seven good years.35 Have them gather all the food produced in the good years that are just ahead and bring it to Pharaoh’s storehouses. Store it away, and guard it so there will be food in the cities.36 That way there will be enough to eat when the seven years of famine come to the land of Egypt. Otherwise this famine will destroy the land.”

Joseph Made Ruler of Egypt

37 Joseph’s suggestions were well received by Pharaoh and his officials.38 So Pharaoh asked his officials, “Can we find anyone else like this man so obviously filled with the spirit of God?”39 Then Pharaoh said to Joseph, “Since God has revealed the meaning of the dreams to you, clearly no one else is as intelligent or wise as you are.40 You will be in charge of my court, and all my people will take orders from you. Only I, sitting on my throne, will have a rank higher than yours.”

41 Pharaoh said to Joseph, “I hereby put you in charge of the entire land of Egypt.”42 Then Pharaoh removed his signet ring from his hand and placed it on Joseph’s finger. He dressed him in fine linen clothing and hung a gold chain around his neck.43 Then he had Joseph ride in the chariot reserved for his second-in-command. And wherever Joseph went, the command was shouted, “Kneel down!” So Pharaoh put Joseph in charge of all Egypt.44 And Pharaoh said to him, “I am Pharaoh, but no one will lift a hand or foot in the entire land of Egypt without your approval.”

45 Then Pharaoh gave Joseph a new Egyptian name, Zaphenath-paneah.Zaphenath-paneah probably means “God speaks and lives.” He also gave him a wife, whose name was Asenath. She was the daughter of Potiphera, the priest of On.Greek version reads of Heliopolis; also in 41:50. So Joseph took charge of the entire land of Egypt.46 He was thirty years old when he began serving in the court of Pharaoh, the king of Egypt. And when Joseph left Pharaoh’s presence, he inspected the entire land of Egypt.

47 As predicted, for seven years the land produced bumper crops.48 During those years, Joseph gathered all the crops grown in Egypt and stored the grain from the surrounding fields in the cities.49 He piled up huge amounts of grain like sand on the seashore. Finally, he stopped keeping records because there was too much to measure.

50 During this time, before the first of the famine years, two sons were born to Joseph and his wife, Asenath, the daughter of Potiphera, the priest of On.51 Joseph named his older son Manasseh,Manasseh sounds like a Hebrew term that means “causing to forget.” for he said, “God has made me forget all my troubles and everyone in my father’s family.”52 Joseph named his second son Ephraim,Ephraim sounds like a Hebrew term that means “fruitful.” for he said, “God has made me fruitful in this land of my grief.”

53 At last the seven years of bumper crops throughout the land of Egypt came to an end.54 Then the seven years of famine began, just as Joseph had predicted. The famine also struck all the surrounding countries, but throughout Egypt there was plenty of food.55 Eventually, however, the famine spread throughout the land of Egypt as well. And when the people cried out to Pharaoh for food, he told them, “Go to Joseph, and do whatever he tells you.”56 So with severe famine everywhere, Joseph opened up the storehouses and distributed grain to the Egyptians, for the famine was severe throughout the land of Egypt.57 And people from all around came to Egypt to buy grain from Joseph because the famine was severe throughout the world.

Joseph’s Brothers Go to Egypt

42 When Jacob heard that grain was available in Egypt, he said to his sons, “Why are you standing around looking at one another?I have heard there is grain in Egypt. Go down there, and buy enough grain to keep us alive. Otherwise we’ll die.”

So Joseph’s ten older brothers went down to Egypt to buy grain.But Jacob wouldn’t let Joseph’s younger brother, Benjamin, go with them, for fear some harm might come to him.So Jacob’sHebrew Israel’s. See note on 35:21. sons arrived in Egypt along with others to buy food, for the famine was in Canaan as well.

Since Joseph was governor of all Egypt and in charge of selling grain to all the people, it was to him that his brothers came. When they arrived, they bowed before him with their faces to the ground.Joseph recognized his brothers instantly, but he pretended to be a stranger and spoke harshly to them. “Where are you from?” he demanded.

“From the land of Canaan,” they replied. “We have come to buy food.”

Although Joseph recognized his brothers, they didn’t recognize him.And he remembered the dreams he’d had about them many years before. He said to them, “You are spies! You have come to see how vulnerable our land has become.”

10 “No, my lord!” they exclaimed. “Your servants have simply come to buy food.11 We are all brothers—members of the same family. We are honest men, sir! We are not spies!”

12 “Yes, you are!” Joseph insisted. “You have come to see how vulnerable our land has become.”

13 “Sir,” they said, “there are actually twelve of us. We, your servants, are all brothers, sons of a man living in the land of Canaan. Our youngest brother is back there with our father right now, and one of our brothers is no longer with us.”

14 But Joseph insisted, “As I said, you are spies!15 This is how I will test your story. I swear by the life of Pharaoh that you will never leave Egypt unless your youngest brother comes here!16 One of you must go and get your brother. I’ll keep the rest of you here in prison. Then we’ll find out whether or not your story is true. By the life of Pharaoh, if it turns out that you don’t have a younger brother, then I’ll know you are spies.”

17 So Joseph put them all in prison for three days.

17 And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, In my dream, behold, I stood upon the bank of the river:

18 And, behold, there came up out of the river seven kine, fatfleshed and well favoured; and they fed in a meadow:

19 And, behold, seven other kine came up after them, poor and very ill favoured and leanfleshed, such as I never saw in all the land of Egypt for badness:

20 And the lean and the ill favoured kine did eat up the first seven fat kine:

21 And when they had eaten them up, it could not be known that they had eaten them; but they were still ill favoured, as at the beginning. So I awoke.

22 And I saw in my dream, and, behold, seven ears came up in one stalk, full and good:

23 And, behold, seven ears, withered, thin, and blasted with the east wind, sprung up after them:

24 And the thin ears devoured the seven good ears: and I told this unto the magicians; but there was none that could declare it to me.

25 And Joseph said unto Pharaoh, The dream of Pharaoh is one: God hath shewed Pharaoh what he is about to do.

26 The seven good kine are seven years; and the seven good ears are seven years: the dream is one.

27 And the seven thin and ill favoured kine that came up after them are seven years; and the seven empty ears blasted with the east wind shall be seven years of famine.

28 This is the thing which I have spoken unto Pharaoh: What God is about to do he sheweth unto Pharaoh.

29 Behold, there come seven years of great plenty throughout all the land of Egypt:

30 And there shall arise after them seven years of famine; and all the plenty shall be forgotten in the land of Egypt; and the famine shall consume the land;

31 And the plenty shall not be known in the land by reason of that famine following; for it shall be very grievous.

32 And for that the dream was doubled unto Pharaoh twice; it is because the thing is established by God, and God will shortly bring it to pass.

33 Now therefore let Pharaoh look out a man discreet and wise, and set him over the land of Egypt.

34 Let Pharaoh do this, and let him appoint officers over the land, and take up the fifth part of the land of Egypt in the seven plenteous years.

35 And let them gather all the food of those good years that come, and lay up corn under the hand of Pharaoh, and let them keep food in the cities.

36 And that food shall be for store to the land against the seven years of famine, which shall be in the land of Egypt; that the land perish not through the famine.

37 And the thing was good in the eyes of Pharaoh, and in the eyes of all his servants.

38 And Pharaoh said unto his servants, Can we find such a one as this is, a man in whom the Spirit of God is?

39 And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, Forasmuch as God hath shewed thee all this, there is none so discreet and wise as thou art:

40 Thou shalt be over my house, and according unto thy word shall all my people be ruled: only in the throne will I be greater than thou.

41 And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, See, I have set thee over all the land of Egypt.

42 And Pharaoh took off his ring from his hand, and put it upon Joseph's hand, and arrayed him in vestures of fine linen, and put a gold chain about his neck;

43 And he made him to ride in the second chariot which he had; and they cried before him, Bow the knee: and he made him ruler over all the land of Egypt.

44 And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, I am Pharaoh, and without thee shall no man lift up his hand or foot in all the land of Egypt.

45 And Pharaoh called Joseph's name Zaphnathpaaneah; and he gave him to wife Asenath the daughter of Potipherah priest of On. And Joseph went out over all the land of Egypt.

46 And Joseph was thirty years old when he stood before Pharaoh king of Egypt. And Joseph went out from the presence of Pharaoh, and went throughout all the land of Egypt.

47 And in the seven plenteous years the earth brought forth by handfuls.

48 And he gathered up all the food of the seven years, which were in the land of Egypt, and laid up the food in the cities: the food of the field, which was round about every city, laid he up in the same.

49 And Joseph gathered corn as the sand of the sea, very much, until he left numbering; for it was without number.

50 And unto Joseph were born two sons before the years of famine came, which Asenath the daughter of Potipherah priest of On bare unto him.

51 And Joseph called the name of the firstborn Manasseh: For God, said he, hath made me forget all my toil, and all my father's house.

52 And the name of the second called he Ephraim: For God hath caused me to be fruitful in the land of my affliction.

53 And the seven years of plenteousness, that was in the land of Egypt, were ended.

54 And the seven years of dearth began to come, according as Joseph had said: and the dearth was in all lands; but in all the land of Egypt there was bread.

55 And when all the land of Egypt was famished, the people cried to Pharaoh for bread: and Pharaoh said unto all the Egyptians, Go unto Joseph; what he saith to you, do.

56 And the famine was over all the face of the earth: and Joseph opened all the storehouses, and sold unto the Egyptians; and the famine waxed sore in the land of Egypt.

57 And all countries came into Egypt to Joseph for to buy corn; because that the famine was so sore in all lands.

42 Now when Jacob saw that there was corn in Egypt, Jacob said unto his sons, Why do ye look one upon another?

And he said, Behold, I have heard that there is corn in Egypt: get you down thither, and buy for us from thence; that we may live, and not die.

And Joseph's ten brethren went down to buy corn in Egypt.

But Benjamin, Joseph's brother, Jacob sent not with his brethren; for he said, Lest peradventure mischief befall him.

And the sons of Israel came to buy corn among those that came: for the famine was in the land of Canaan.

And Joseph was the governor over the land, and he it was that sold to all the people of the land: and Joseph's brethren came, and bowed down themselves before him with their faces to the earth.

And Joseph saw his brethren, and he knew them, but made himself strange unto them, and spake roughly unto them; and he said unto them, Whence come ye? And they said, From the land of Canaan to buy food.

And Joseph knew his brethren, but they knew not him.

And Joseph remembered the dreams which he dreamed of them, and said unto them, Ye are spies; to see the nakedness of the land ye are come.

10 And they said unto him, Nay, my lord, but to buy food are thy servants come.

11 We are all one man's sons; we are true men, thy servants are no spies.

12 And he said unto them, Nay, but to see the nakedness of the land ye are come.

13 And they said, Thy servants are twelve brethren, the sons of one man in the land of Canaan; and, behold, the youngest is this day with our father, and one is not.

14 And Joseph said unto them, That is it that I spake unto you, saying, Ye are spies:

15 Hereby ye shall be proved: By the life of Pharaoh ye shall not go forth hence, except your youngest brother come hither.

16 Send one of you, and let him fetch your brother, and ye shall be kept in prison, that your words may be proved, whether there be any truth in you: or else by the life of Pharaoh surely ye are spies.

17 And he put them all together into ward three days.

Matthew 13:24-46

The Parable of the Weeds

24 Jesus told them another parable: “The kingdom of heaven is likever 31, 33, 45, 47; Mt 18:23; 20:1; 22:2; 25:1; Mk 4:26, 30 a man who sowed good seed in his field.25 But while everyone was sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat, and went away.26 When the wheat sprouted and formed heads, then the weeds also appeared.

27 “The owner’s servants came to him and said, ‘Sir, didn’t you sow good seed in your field? Where then did the weeds come from?’

28 “‘An enemy did this,’ he replied.

“The servants asked him, ‘Do you want us to go and pull them up?’

29 “‘No,’ he answered, ‘because while you are pulling the weeds, you may uproot the wheat with them.30 Let both grow together until the harvest. At that time I will tell the harvesters: First collect the weeds and tie them in bundles to be burned; then gather the wheat and bring it into my barn.’”Mt 3:12

The Parables of the Mustard Seed and the Yeast13:31, 32pp — Mk 4:30-3213:31-33pp — Lk 13:18-21

31 He told them another parable: “The kingdom of heaven is likeS ver 24 a mustard seed,Mt 17:20; Lk 17:6 which a man took and planted in his field.32 Though it is the smallest of all seeds, yet when it grows, it is the largest of garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the birds come and perch in its branches.”Ps 104:12; Eze 17:23; 31:6; Da 4:12

33 He told them still another parable: “The kingdom of heaven is likeS ver 24 yeast that a woman took and mixed into about sixty poundsOr about 27 kilograms of flourGe 18:6 until it worked all through the dough.”Gal 5:9

34 Jesus spoke all these things to the crowd in parables; he did not say anything to them without using a parable.S Jn 16:2535 So was fulfilledver 14; S Mt 1:22 what was spoken through the prophet:

“I will open my mouth in parables,

I will utter things hidden since the creation of the world.”Psalm 78:2Ps 78:2; Ro 16:25, 26; 1Co 2:7; Eph 3:9; Col 1:26

The Parable of the Weeds Explained

36 Then he left the crowd and went into the house. His disciples came to him and said, “Explain to us the parableMt 15:15 of the weeds in the field.”

37 He answered, “The one who sowed the good seed is the Son of Man.S Mt 8:2038 The field is the world, and the good seed stands for the people of the kingdom. The weeds are the people of the evil one,Jn 8:44, 45; 1Jn 3:1039 and the enemy who sows them is the devil. The harvestJoel 3:13 is the end of the age,Mt 24:3; 28:20 and the harvesters are angels.Rev 14:15

40 “As the weeds are pulled up and burned in the fire, so it will be at the end of the age.41 The Son of ManS Mt 8:20 will send out his angels,Mt 24:31 and they will weed out of his kingdom everything that causes sin and all who do evil.42 They will throw them into the blazing furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.S Mt 8:1243 Then the righteous will shine like the sunDa 12:3 in the kingdom of their Father. Whoever has ears, let them hear.S Mt 11:15

The Parables of the Hidden Treasure and the Pearl

44 “The kingdom of heaven is likeS ver 24 treasure hidden in a field. When a man found it, he hid it again, and then in his joy went and sold all he had and bought that field.Isa 55:1; Mt 19:21; Php 3:7, 8

45 “Again, the kingdom of heaven is likeS ver 24 a merchant looking for fine pearls.46 When he found one of great value, he went away and sold everything he had and bought it.

Parable of the Wheat and Weeds

24 Here is another story Jesus told: “The Kingdom of Heaven is like a farmer who planted good seed in his field.25 But that night as the workers slept, his enemy came and planted weeds among the wheat, then slipped away.26 When the crop began to grow and produce grain, the weeds also grew.

27 “The farmer’s workers went to him and said, ‘Sir, the field where you planted that good seed is full of weeds! Where did they come from?’

28 “‘An enemy has done this!’ the farmer exclaimed.

“‘Should we pull out the weeds?’ they asked.

29 “‘No,’ he replied, ‘you’ll uproot the wheat if you do.30 Let both grow together until the harvest. Then I will tell the harvesters to sort out the weeds, tie them into bundles, and burn them, and to put the wheat in the barn.’”

Parable of the Mustard Seed

31 Here is another illustration Jesus used: “The Kingdom of Heaven is like a mustard seed planted in a field.32 It is the smallest of all seeds, but it becomes the largest of garden plants; it grows into a tree, and birds come and make nests in its branches.”

Parable of the Yeast

33 Jesus also used this illustration: “The Kingdom of Heaven is like the yeast a woman used in making bread. Even though she put only a little yeast in three measures of flour, it permeated every part of the dough.”

34 Jesus always used stories and illustrations like these when speaking to the crowds. In fact, he never spoke to them without using such parables.35 This fulfilled what God had spoken through the prophet:

“I will speak to you in parables.

I will explain things hidden since the creation of the world.Some manuscripts do not include of the world. Ps 78:2.

Parable of the Wheat and Weeds Explained

36 Then, leaving the crowds outside, Jesus went into the house. His disciples said, “Please explain to us the story of the weeds in the field.”

37 Jesus replied, “The Son of Man“Son of Man” is a title Jesus used for himself. is the farmer who plants the good seed.38 The field is the world, and the good seed represents the people of the Kingdom. The weeds are the people who belong to the evil one.39 The enemy who planted the weeds among the wheat is the devil. The harvest is the end of the world,Or the age; also in 13:40, 49. and the harvesters are the angels.

40 “Just as the weeds are sorted out and burned in the fire, so it will be at the end of the world.41 The Son of Man will send his angels, and they will remove from his Kingdom everything that causes sin and all who do evil.42 And the angels will throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.43 Then the righteous will shine like the sun in their Father’s Kingdom. Anyone with ears to hear should listen and understand!

Parables of the Hidden Treasure and the Pearl

44 “The Kingdom of Heaven is like a treasure that a man discovered hidden in a field. In his excitement, he hid it again and sold everything he owned to get enough money to buy the field.

45 “Again, the Kingdom of Heaven is like a merchant on the lookout for choice pearls.46 When he discovered a pearl of great value, he sold everything he owned and bought it!

24 Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field:

25 But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way.

26 But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also.

27 So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares?

28 He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up?

29 But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them.

30 Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn.

31 Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is like to a grain of mustard seed, which a man took, and sowed in his field:

32 Which indeed is the least of all seeds: but when it is grown, it is the greatest among herbs, and becometh a tree, so that the birds of the air come and lodge in the branches thereof.

33 Another parable spake he unto them; The kingdom of heaven is like unto leaven, which a woman took, and hid in three measures of meal, till the whole was leavened.

34 All these things spake Jesus unto the multitude in parables; and without a parable spake he not unto them:

35 That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying, I will open my mouth in parables; I will utter things which have been kept secret from the foundation of the world.

36 Then Jesus sent the multitude away, and went into the house: and his disciples came unto him, saying, Declare unto us the parable of the tares of the field.

37 He answered and said unto them, He that soweth the good seed is the Son of man;

38 The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked one;

39 The enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angels.

40 As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in the end of this world.

41 The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity;

42 And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.

43 Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Who hath ears to hear, let him hear.

44 Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto treasure hid in a field; the which when a man hath found, he hideth, and for joy thereof goeth and selleth all that he hath, and buyeth that field.

45 Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls:

46 Who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had, and bought it.

Psalm 18:1-15

Psalm 18In Hebrew texts 18:1-50 is numbered 18:2-51.18:Title–50pp — 2Sa 22:1-51

For the director of music. Of David the servant of the Lord. He sang to the Lord the words of this song when the Lord delivered him from the hand of all his enemies and from the hand of Saul. He said:

I love you, Lord, my strength.S Ex 15:2; S Dt 33:29; S 1Sa 2:10; Ps 22:19; 28:7; 59:9; 81:1; Isa 12:2; 49:5; Jer 16:19

The Lord is my rock,S Ex 33:22 my fortressPs 28:8; 31:2, 3; Isa 17:10; Jer 16:19 and my deliverer;Ps 40:17

my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge,Ps 2:12; 9:9; 94:22

my shieldOr sovereignS Ge 15:1; Ps 28:7; 84:9; 119:114; 144:2 and the hornHorn here symbolizes strength. of my salvation,S 1Sa 2:1; S Lk 1:69 my stronghold.

I called to the Lord, who is worthy of praise,S 1Ch 16:25

and I have been saved from my enemies.S Ps 9:13

The cords of deathPs 116:3 entangled me;

the torrentsPs 93:4; 124:4; Isa 5:30; 17:12; Jer 6:23; 51:42, 55; Eze 43:2 of destruction overwhelmed me.

The cords of the grave coiled around me;

the snares of deathPr 13:14 confronted me.

In my distressS Dt 4:30 I called to the Lord;Ps 30:2; 99:6; 102:2; 120:1

I cried to my God for help.

From his temple he heard my voice;Ps 66:19; 116:1

my cry cameS Job 16:18 before him, into his ears.

The earth trembledPs 97:4; Isa 5:25; 64:3 and quaked,S Jdg 5:4

and the foundations of the mountains shook;S Jdg 5:5

they trembled because he was angry.S Job 9:5; Jer 10:10

Smoke rose from his nostrils;S Job 41:20

consuming fireS Ex 15:7; S 19:18; S Job 41:21; Ps 50:3; 97:3; Da 7:10 came from his mouth,

burning coalsPr 25:22; Ro 12:20 blazed out of it.

He parted the heavens and came down;S Ge 11:5; S Ps 57:3

dark cloudsS Ex 20:21; S Dt 33:26; S Ps 104:3 were under his feet.

10 He mounted the cherubimS Ge 3:24; Eze 10:18 and flew;

he soaredS Dt 33:26 on the wings of the wind.Ps 104:3

11 He made darkness his covering,S Ex 19:9; S Dt 4:11 his canopyS Job 22:14; Isa 4:5; Jer 43:10 around him—

the dark rain clouds of the sky.

12 Out of the brightness of his presencePs 104:2 clouds advanced,

with hailstonesS Jos 10:11 and bolts of lightning.S Job 36:30

13 The Lord thunderedS Ex 9:23; S 1Sa 2:10 from heaven;

the voice of the Most High resounded.Some Hebrew manuscripts and Septuagint (see also 2 Samuel 22:14); most Hebrew manuscripts resounded, / amid hailstones and bolts of lightning

14 He shot his arrowsS Dt 32:23 and scattered the enemy,

with great bolts of lightningS Job 36:30; Rev 4:5 he routed them.S Jdg 4:15

15 The valleys of the sea were exposed

and the foundationsS Ps 11:3 of the earth laid bare

at your rebuke,Ps 76:6; 104:7; 106:9; Isa 50:2 Lord,

at the blast of breath from your nostrils.S Ex 15:8

Psalm 18

For the choir director: A psalm of David, the servant of the Lord. He sang this song to the Lord on the day the Lord rescued him from all his enemies and from Saul. He sang:

I love you, Lord;

you are my strength.

The Lord is my rock, my fortress, and my savior;

my God is my rock, in whom I find protection.

He is my shield, the power that saves me,

and my place of safety.

I called on the Lord, who is worthy of praise,

and he saved me from my enemies.

The ropes of death entangled me;

floods of destruction swept over me.

The graveHebrew Sheol. wrapped its ropes around me;

death laid a trap in my path.

But in my distress I cried out to the Lord;

yes, I prayed to my God for help.

He heard me from his sanctuary;

my cry to him reached his ears.

Then the earth quaked and trembled.

The foundations of the mountains shook;

they quaked because of his anger.

Smoke poured from his nostrils;

fierce flames leaped from his mouth.

Glowing coals blazed forth from him.

He opened the heavens and came down;

dark storm clouds were beneath his feet.

10 Mounted on a mighty angelic being,Hebrew a cherub. he flew,

soaring on the wings of the wind.

11 He shrouded himself in darkness,

veiling his approach with dark rain clouds.

12 Thick clouds shielded the brightness around him

and rained down hail and burning coals.Or and lightning bolts; also in 18:13.

13 The Lord thundered from heaven;

the voice of the Most High resounded

amid the hail and burning coals.

14 He shot his arrows and scattered his enemies;

great bolts of lightning flashed, and they were confused.

15 Then at your command, O Lord,

at the blast of your breath,

the bottom of the sea could be seen,

and the foundations of the earth were laid bare.

18 I will love thee, O Lord, my strength.

The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower.

I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised: so shall I be saved from mine enemies.

The sorrows of death compassed me, and the floods of ungodly men made me afraid.

The sorrows of hell compassed me about: the snares of death prevented me.

In my distress I called upon the Lord, and cried unto my God: he heard my voice out of his temple, and my cry came before him, even into his ears.

Then the earth shook and trembled; the foundations also of the hills moved and were shaken, because he was wroth.

There went up a smoke out of his nostrils, and fire out of his mouth devoured: coals were kindled by it.

He bowed the heavens also, and came down: and darkness was under his feet.

10 And he rode upon a cherub, and did fly: yea, he did fly upon the wings of the wind.

11 He made darkness his secret place; his pavilion round about him were dark waters and thick clouds of the skies.

12 At the brightness that was before him his thick clouds passed, hail stones and coals of fire.

13 The Lord also thundered in the heavens, and the Highest gave his voice; hail stones and coals of fire.

14 Yea, he sent out his arrows, and scattered them; and he shot out lightnings, and discomfited them.

15 Then the channels of waters were seen, and the foundations of the world were discovered at thy rebuke, O Lord, at the blast of the breath of thy nostrils.

Proverbs 4:1-6

Get Wisdom at Any Cost

Listen, my sons,S Pr 1:8 to a father’s instruction;Pr 19:20

pay attention and gain understanding.S Job 8:10

I give you sound learning,

so do not forsake my teaching.

For I too was a son to my father,

still tender, and cherished by my mother.

Then he taught me, and he said to me,

“Take holdS 1Ki 9:4 of my words with all your heart;

keep my commands, and you will live.Pr 7:2

Get wisdom,S Pr 2:12; 3:13-18 get understanding;

do not forget my words or turn away from them.

Do not forsake wisdom, and she will protect you;2Th 2:10

love her, and she will watch over you.S Pr 2:11

A Father’s Wise Advice

My children,Hebrew My sons. listen when your father corrects you.

Pay attention and learn good judgment,

for I am giving you good guidance.

Don’t turn away from my instructions.

For I, too, was once my father’s son,

tenderly loved as my mother’s only child.

My father taught me,

“Take my words to heart.

Follow my commands, and you will live.

Get wisdom; develop good judgment.

Don’t forget my words or turn away from them.

Don’t turn your back on wisdom, for she will protect you.

Love her, and she will guard you.

Hear, ye children, the instruction of a father, and attend to know understanding.

For I give you good doctrine, forsake ye not my law.

For I was my father's son, tender and only beloved in the sight of my mother.

He taught me also, and said unto me, Let thine heart retain my words: keep my commandments, and live.

Get wisdom, get understanding: forget it not; neither decline from the words of my mouth.

Forsake her not, and she shall preserve thee: love her, and she shall keep thee.

Jan 19 Jan 21
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