Saturday, December 3, 2011

2011 December 3 - Morning Manna

Then the mariners were afraid, and cried every man unto his god, and cast forth the wares that were in the ship into the sea, to lighten it of them. But Jonah was gone down into the sides of the ship; and he lay, and was fast asleep. So the shipmaster came to him, and said unto him, What meanest thou, O sleeper? arise, call upon thy God, if so be that God will think upon us, that we perish not. And they said every one to his fellow, Come, and let us cast lots, that we may know for whose cause this evil is upon us. So they cast lots, and the lot fell upon Jonah. Then said they unto him, Tell us, we pray thee, for whose cause this evil is upon us; What is thine occupation? and whence comest thou? what is thy country? and of what people art thou?
(Jonah 1:5-8)
Today's Morsel:It's not uncommon when we are traveling and we want to break the ice with someone that we do not know, that we begin by asking them where they are from and what their occupation is. With today's technology and easy travel, people come from all parts of the earth and do many different things. I have met many people during my travels, and when I ask them where they are from and they tell me, sometimes I will say, I've been there before. They are often surprised. but the opportunity to communicate with them is made easier. If we know something about others' occupations, in some cases it makes it easier to witness to them. Commonality can and does open doors. The men on the ship with Jonah wanted to know where he was from and what he did that he could be sleeping and not be concerned that they were in danger of the seas. Joseph told his family to tell pharaoh when he asked them what their occupation was, to say they were shepherds. "And Joseph said unto his brethren, and unto his father's house, I will go up, and shew Pharaoh, and say unto him, My brethren, and my father's house, which were in the land of Canaan, are come unto me; And the men are shepherds, for their trade hath been to feed cattle; and they have brought their flocks, and their herds, and all that they have. And it shall come to pass, when Pharaoh shall call you, and shall say, What is your occupation? That ye shall say, Thy servants' trade hath been about cattle from our youth even until now, both we, and also our fathers: that ye may dwell in the land of Goshen; for every shepherd is an abomination unto the Egyptians" (Genesis 46:31-34). This he considers desirable, on two grounds: first, because Goshen was best suited for pasture; and secondly, because the chosen family would thus be comparatively isolated from Egyptian society. They would be free to practice their religion without intervention by the Egyptians. Even though the Egyptians raise cattle and sheep, they did not sacrifice them to their god as the Israelites did. They saw them as sacred. If Israel represents the church, and Egypt represents the world, then our occupation must be shepherds, our people are to be the people of God, and our country is afar.
Sing:There's a country far beyond the starry skies, there's a city where there never comes a night, if we're faithful we shall go there by and by, tis the city where the Lamb is the light.
In the city where the Lamb is the light, in the city where there cometh no night, I've a mansion over there and I'm free from toil and care, it's in the city where the Lamb is the light.

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