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The Lord's Family Fellowship

THE LORD’S FAMILY FELLOWSHIP

Where Jesus Christ is truly Lord over all areas of our lives


FATHERS’ PRAYER, PRAISE, and LESSONS FOR HIS FAMILY

Genesis Two: God Creates Man and Woman

SATURDAY, August 16
Prayer
Praise: Great Is Thy Faithfulness
Memorize Thy Word: Psalm 8:3-9: “When I consider Thy heavens, the work of Thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which Thou hast ordained; what is man, that Thou dost take thought of him? And the son of man, that Thou dost care for him? Yet Thou hast made him a little lower than God, and dost crown him with glory and majesty! Thou dost make him to rule over the works of Thy hands; Thou hast put all things under his feet, all sheep and oxen, and also the beasts of the field, the birds of the heavens, and the fish of the sea, whatever passes through the paths of the seas. O Lord, our Lord, how majestic is Thy name in all the earth!”
 Philippians 3:20,21: “For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ; who will transform the body of our humble state into conformity with the body of His glory, by the exertion of the power that He has even to subject all things to Himself.”
 Malachi 2:15,16: “‘…Take heed then, to your spirit, and let no one deal treacherously against the wife of your youth. For I hate divorce,’ says the Lord…”
Memorize: The Five Books of Poetry in the Old Testament
Lesson: The Sabbath Day

 Read Genesis 2:1-3: “Thus the heavens and the earth were completed, and all their hosts. And by the seventh day God completed His work which He had done; and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done. Then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it He rested from all His work which God had created and made.”
 1. Completed means “filled. Having no deficiency; perfect. Finished.” For Ecclesiastes 3:14 says, “I know that everything God does will remain forever; there is nothing to add to it and there is nothing to take from it, for God has so worked that men should fear Him.”
 2. “God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it He rested from all His work which God had created and made.” God did not need to rest, (“Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth does not become weary or tired” Isaiah 40:28), but set an example for us to follow, giving us a pattern for our daily living, both for working and for resting from our work so that we would take time from our weekly labors to worship our Creator. And although God needed not any of these creations, as He was certainly complete without them, God was very pleased with what He had created—all manifestations of His glorious being, so He blessed this day that we may rest from our labors, so as to honor God in reflecting on God’s creation and faithfulness, whereby our souls would be at peace and filled with joy. “Thus says the Lord, ‘Stand by the ways and see and ask for the ancient paths, where the good way is, and walk in it; and you shall find rest for your souls…’” (Jeremiah 6:16). When we follow God’s ways, they become easy and bring peace and joy to our souls. In Matthew 11:28-30, Jesus says, “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you, and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart; and you shall find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy, and My load is light.”
  A. Sanctify means “to make holy. To separate, set apart or appoint to a holy, sacred or religious use. To purify; to prepare for divine service. To separate, ordain and appoint to the work of redemption and the government of the church. To cleanse from corruption; to purify from sin; to make holy by detaching the affections from the world and its defilements, and exalting them to a supreme love to God. To make free from guilt. To sanctify God, to praise and celebrate Him as a holy being; to acknowledge and honor his holy majesty, and to reverence His character and laws.”
  B. It is a holy day and should be spent differently than all the other days, for it is a day set apart to honor and praise our Lord, who is certainly worthy of our praise.
  C. Read Exodus 20:8-11: “Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a sabbath of the Lord your God; in it you shall not do any work, you or your son or your daughter, your male or your female servant or your cattle or your sojourner who stays with you. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day; therefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day and made it holy.” We see here that even animals were to rest.
  D. First of all God commands us to remember the Sabbath day. The Hebrew word for Sabbath means to cease, to rest. Sabbath means “the day which God appointed to be observed by the Jews as a day of rest from all secular labor or employments, and to be kept holy and consecrated to His service and worship. This was originally the seventh day of the week, the day on which God rested from the work of creation; and this day is still observed by the Jews and some Christians, as the Sabbath. But the Christian church very early begun and still continue to observe the first day of the week, in commemoration of the resurrection of Christ on that day, by which the work of redemption was completed. Hence it is often called the Lord’s day.”
  E. Read Exodus 35:2,3: “For six days work may be done, but on the seventh day you shall have a holy day, a sabbath of complete rest to the Lord; whoever does any work on it shall be put to death. You shall not kindle a fire in any of your dwellings on the sabbath day.”
  F. Read Leviticus 25 on the laws concerning the Sabbath Year and the Year of Jubilee.

SUNDAY, August 17
Prayer
Praise: Great Is Thy Faithfulness
Memorize Thy Word: Psalm 8:3-9, Philippians 3:20,21, and Malachi 2:15,16
Memorize: The Five Books of Poetry in the Old Testament
Lesson: God Creates Man

 Read Genesis 2:4-7: “This is the account of the heavens and the earth when they were created, in the day that the Lord God made earth and heaven. Now no shrub of the field was yet in the earth, and no plant of the field had yet sprouted, for the Lord God had not sent rain upon the earth; and there was no man to cultivate the ground. But a mist used to rise from the earth and water the whole surface of the ground. Then the Lord God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.”
 1. The name given to our creator here is Jehovah—the Lord. Elohim referred to God’s power; whereas Jehovah Elohim refers to a God of perfection who perfects what He began, in that He completed it perfectly. Elohim is also a plural noun, which reveals God as the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. As God is three parts, and since we were made in His image, He made us in three parts—body, soul, and spirit.
 2. Notice that “no shrub of the field was yet in the earth, and no plant of the field had yet sprouted” because the earth was incapable on its own to bring forth life; only God, by His Almighty power, is able to bring forth any life. Psalm 104:30: “Thou dost send forth Thy Spirit, they are created; and Thou dost renew the face of the ground.”
  A. And indeed, God does control the rain, as He shows in Amos 4:7 where he says, “I withheld the rain from you while there were still three months until harvest. Then I would send rain on one city and on another city I would not send rain; one part would be rained on, while the part not rained on would dry up.”
 3. Did you know that our bodies actually contain the same minerals that are found in the earth itself? And isn’t it interesting that God made our bodies out of dust, and when we die our bodies return to dust? Could it be that God created us out of dust, common dirt in fact, something often despised, so that we would have nothing to boast about apart from our Lord and Saviour who Himself breathed life into our empty frames? Isn’t it amazing that He chose this substance in which to create something so marvelous? Yet we must remember that we are nothing apart from God. We enter this life with nothing and leave this life with nothing, not even of our own accord, but when God so chooses. This alone should make us extremely humble. Job 1:21: “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I shall return there. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away. Blessed be the name of the Lord.” And in Job 4:17-19: “Can mankind be just before God? Can a man be pure before his Maker? He puts no trust even in His servants; and against His angels He charges error. How much more those who dwell in houses of clay, whose foundation is in the dust…”
 4. The marvelous thing about our beings, literally our souls, is that although our bodies go back to dust after we die, our soul and spirit lives on forever – either with God or apart from God.
  A. Read 2 Corinthians 4:16: “Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day.” PRAISE GOD!
  B. Read 1 Corinthians 15:42-50: “So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown a perishable body, it is raised an imperishable body; it is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory; it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power; it is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. If there is a natural body, there is also a spiritual body. So also it is written, ‘The first man, Adam, became a living soul.’ The last Adam became a life-giving spirit. However, the spiritual is not first, but the natural; then the spiritual. The first man is from the earth, earthy; the second man is from heaven. As is the earthy, so also are those who are earthy; and as is the heavenly, so also are those who are heavenly. Just as we have borne the image of the earthy, we will also bear the image of the heavenly. Now I say this, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable.”
  C. Read Philippians 3:20,21: “For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ; who will transform the body of our humble state into conformity with the body of His glory, by the exertion of the power that He has even to subject all things to Himself.”
  D. It is actually the Spirit of God who breathed life into us. Job 33:4 says, “The Spirit of God has made me, and the breath of the Almighty gives me life.” Ecclesiastes 12:7: “Then the dust will return to the earth as it was, and the spirit will return to God who gave it.”
  E. Our spirit and soul are not of this earth; our home is not on this earth, so then we should keep our sights on God and on our heavenly home and not become entwined with this world—its worldly ways or its worldly things. God gave us life, and into His hands we should commit all of it.
 5. God created all the other creatures, but God formed us. Form means “to make or cause to exist. To shape; to mold or fashion.” To think that God actually shaped us. Jeremiah 1:5: “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you.”
  A. Job 33:6: “Behold, I belong to God like you; I too have been formed out of the clay.” Isaiah 64:8: “But now, O Lord, Thou art our Father, we are the clay, and Thou our potter; and all of us are the work of Thy hand.” We must revere our Maker. Psalm 100:3: “Know that the Lord Himself is God; it is He who has made us, and not we ourselves; we are His people and the sheep of His pasture.” Isaiah 45:9: “Woe to the one who quarrels with his Maker—an earthenware vessel among the vessels of earth! Will the clay say to the potter, ‘What are you doing?’ Or the thing you are making say, ‘He has no hands?’”
  B. Read Psalm 139:13-18: “For Thou didst form my inward parts; Thou didst weave me in my mother’s womb. I will give thanks to Thee, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; wonderful are Thy works, and my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from Thee, when I was made in secret, and skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth. Thine eyes have seen my unformed substance; and in Thy book they were all written, the days that were ordained for me, when as yet there was not one of them. How precious also are Thy thoughts to me, O God! How vast is the sum of them! If I should count them, they would outnumber the sand. When I awake, I am still with Thee.”
  C. Read Psalm 8:3-9: “When I consider Thy heavens, the work of Thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which Thou hast ordained; what is man, that Thou dost take thought of him? And the son of man, that Thou dost care for him? Yet Thou hast made him a little lower than God, and dost crown him with glory and majesty! Thou dost make him to rule over the works of Thy hands; Thou hast put all things under his feet, all sheep and oxen, and also the beasts of the field, the birds of the heavens, and the fish of the sea, whatever passes through the paths of the seas. O Lord, our Lord, how majestic is Thy name in all the earth!”
 6. The following information about our amazing bodies is taken from Skin and Bones by Joanne E. De Jonge. We would highly recommend that you read this book to your children because it clearly shows how fearfully and wonderfully God made us.
  A. “You are amazing. You are fantastic. You are absolutely wonderful. You’re nearly eighteen square feet of skin holding in six quarts of blood, more that two hundred bones and six hundred muscles, thousands of hairs, millions of glands, billions of nerves…. Within the next minute, your heart will beat seventy to eighty times. Four quarts of blood will pass through your heart to be pumped through miles of veins and arteries. You will breathe about fifteen times; your lungs will process more than six quarts of air. Your skin will tell your body if the air around you is cool or warm. Your ears will pick up hundreds of sounds, but your brain will screen out the unimportant noises. Your eyes will see these letters, and your brain will read words. Millions of electrical signals will flash through your brain. During this minute 100 million of your red blood cells will die. Your body will destroy them. But your bones will make 100 million new red cells to replace them.”
  B. “Eight months before you were born, your eyes had already begun to develop. When you were less than half an inch long, you already had a brain, arms, and hands. Your heart was beating when you were the size of a peanut. Six months before you were born, your fingers and toes were fully developed, and one month later all your internal organs were in place.”
  C. A three-quarters inch square of your skin “contains nine feet of blood vessels, thirty-nine feet of nerves, nine thousand nerve endings, six hundred pain sensors, thirty-six heat sensors, six cold sensors, seventy-five pressure sensors, three hundred sweat glands, thirty hairs, and four oil glands.”
  D. Each lens of your eye is “made up of twenty-two hundred tiny layers of living tissue. One hundred and twenty-six million sight cells are crowded into an area less than the size of a postage stamp!”
  E. “Besides cleaning the air you breathe, your nose also warms or cools and adds moisture to or takes moisture from the air. The temperature outside may be 100 degrees or minus 10 degrees, yet the air which reaches your lungs is always a comfortable body temperature. The humidity outside may be 1 percent or 90 percent, yet the air which reaches your lungs always has a humidity of 75 to 80 percent.”
  F. “Olfactory means contributing to the sense of smell. Each patch of olfactory tissue contains at least five hundred thousand special cells. You have at least seven million microscopic hairs in your nose. Each of these hairs is there to help you smell.”
  G. “You have more than two hundred bones in your body. You have twenty-seven bones … in each hand and wrist…. If you should break a bone … certain bone cells rush to the break. Some cells chew up slivers that have broken off the bone. Other cells go to work making new bone…. During the next twenty-four hours, your bone marrow will make about 250 to 300 billion new red blood cells. During your lifetime, some of your bones will make more than one thousand pounds of red blood cells for you.”
  H. “You have, coiled within your body, more than twenty-five feet of tubing, designed to digest and absorb your food. Along the inside surface of your intestines lie about 180 million glands, all to produce the proper liquids at the proper times” [to help break down the food you eat into the microscopic bits so it can be digested]. “After your food is broken down enough to be absorbed by your blood, it must find its way to that blood…. The inside surface of your small intestines … contains microscopic fingers called villi. Each villus contains a vein, an artery, some muscle, and a lymph vessel. Yet each villus is too small to see without a microscope…. [These help] lots of blood flow through many feet of veins and arteries…. It’s been estimated that you have five million villi within your intestines. If you could take the inside of your intestines without the villi and spread them out on the floor, you would cover about six square feet of space…. But if you could spread out all those little villi also, you would cover about ninety square feet…. What a difference those villi make!”
  I. “Your heart … beats more than 100,000 times a day, about 2,548,000,000 times during an average lifetime. It pumps more than four quarts of blood a minute, more than 5,000 quarts of blood a day.”
  J. “About thirty trillion red corpuscles are shuttling oxygen and carbon dioxide in your blood right now. Each of those corpuscles has about 270 million molecules of hemoglobin in it. Each hemoglobin molecule can carry four oxygen molecules. That’s like thirty trillion buses, each holding 1.8 billion people! … A typical red cell will make about seventy-five thousand trips between your lungs and other body cells…. It takes only about four months to make all those trips…. You have within your body about sixty thousand miles of blood vessels—veins, arteries, and capillaries. If you could lay all your blood vessels end to end, they would stretch around the world (at the equator) almost three times.”
  K. “You have about 250 thousand bronchioles bringing air to your lungs…. You would have to lay twenty-five bronchioles side by side to cover one inch of space…. Most scientists think that there are about 750 million of these little air sacs inside of you. If you could pin all those alveoli flat in a wall, that wall would have to be twenty-five feet long and three stories high…. There are so many capillaries surrounding the alveoli that, if you pinned them to a wall, that wall would have to be more than thirty-three feet long and three stories high…. At least fifteen times a minute, every minute, every hour, every day, every year, you breathe. Every second of every minute, billions of red blood cells push past your millions of alveoli, automatically unloading carbon dioxide and loading oxygen. Every second of every minute, your heart is working with your lungs, circulating your blood in the right direction so that all parts of your body receive the oxygen they need.”
  L. “Your brain is made up of about thirteen billion nerve cells. Each of those cells is connected to thousands upon thousands of other brain cells.”
 7. Knowing that we were so wondrously created in the image of God, how then should we treat our bodies? Romans 12:1: “I urge you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship.” 1 Corinthians 6:19,20: “Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body.”
 8. We are skillfully wrought, wonderfully made in the image of our God, a little lower than God Himself, yet let us be ever mindful that even though Christ was God Himself, His life exemplified perfect humility, setting the example that we should follow. He denied Himself and became obedient to the Father unto death. Philippians 2:5-15: “Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Therefore also God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those who are in heaven, and on earth, and under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. So then, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure. Do all things without grumbling or disputing; that you will prove yourselves to be blameless and innocent, children of God above reproach in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you appear as lights in the world.”
 
MONDAY, August 18
Prayer
Praise: Great Is Thy Faithfulness
Memorize Thy Word: Psalm 8:3-9, Philippians 3:20,21, and Malachi 2:15,16
Memorize: The Five Books of Poetry in the Old Testament
Lesson: The Garden of Eden

 Read Genesis 2:8-15: “And the Lord God planted a garden toward the east, in Eden; and there He placed the man whom He had formed. And out of the ground the Lord God caused to grow every tree that is pleasing to the sight and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Now a river flowed out of Eden to water the garden; and from there it divided and became four rivers. The name of the first is Pishon; it flows around the whole land of Havilah, where there is gold. And the gold of that land is good, the bdellium and the onyx stone are there. And the name of the second river is Gihon; it flows around the whole land of Cush. And the name of the third river is Tigris; it flows east of Assyria. And the fourth river is the Euphrates. Then the Lord God took the man and put him into the garden of Eden to cultivate it and keep it.”
 1. Eden means “delight.” God prepared a beautiful, perfect home for His children that would be both pleasing and a delight—a real paradise.
  A. Although we cannot be certain of the exact location of Eden, many scholars believe that it probably was in the area of Mesopotamia, which is today called Iraq, because of the location of the Tigris and Euphrates being there. Using an atlas, you can research this using other verses like those in Isaiah 37:12 and Ezekiel 27:23. This area has often been celebrated by writers as a real paradise, being abundantly fertile, possessing both a great variety of fruits and an abundance of gold and precious gems. However, regardless of whether this is the exact location of Eden, we can be certain that it was indeed beautiful and full of peace, harmony, and joy. And although Christ will return to judge the world, He will also restore His people and His land. Isaiah 51:3: “Indeed, the Lord will comfort Zion; He will comfort all her waste places. And her wilderness He will make like Eden, and her desert like the garden of the Lord; joy and gladness will be found in her, thanksgiving and sound of a melody.”
  B. Notice that God not only provided food that was good to eat but also pleasing to the sight.
 2. The tree of life was a sign of God’s covenant of grace to Adam that he would indeed be allowed to live eternally with God in this perfect paradise upon condition of his obedience to God. Of this tree, Adam could freely eat. Revelations 2:7: “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes, I will grant to eat of the tree of life, which is in the Paradise of God.”
  A. Revelations 22:1-4: “And he showed me a river of the water of life, clear as crystal, coming from the throne of God and of the Lamb, in the middle of its street. And on either side of the river was the tree of life, bearing twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit every month; and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. And there shall no longer be any curse; and the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it, and His bond-servants shall serve Him; and they shall see His face, and His name shall be on their foreheads.” The tree of life represented Christ whereby “no one comes to the Father, except through Me” (John 14:6). Isn’t it marvelous that everything in God’s Word points to Jesus!
  B. Jesus gave his life on a cross made from a tree and has now become the tree of life that we may eat and live. The act of communion points to this marvelous wonder. “I am the bread of life…. This is the bread which comes down out of heaven, so that one may eat of it and not die. I am the living bread that came down out of heaven; if anyone eats of this bread, he shall live forever; and the bread also which I shall give for the life of the world is My flesh…. Jesus therefore said to them, ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in yourselves. He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life; and I will raise him up on the last day…. He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him. As the living Father sent Me, and I live because of the Father, so he who eats Me, he also shall live because of Me’” (John 6:48-57).
 3. To satisfy your curiosity, bdellium has been translated as pearl. Onyx is a gem; gold is a precious metal that has always been highly valued. God uses these very things in His Holy City.
  A. Read Revelation 21:10-27: “And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me the holy city, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, having the glory of God. Her brilliance was like a very costly stone, as a stone of crystal-clear jasper…. the city was pure gold, like clear glass. The foundation stones of the city wall were adorned with every kind of precious stone…. And the twelve gates were twelve pearls; each one of the gates was a single pearl. And the street of the city was pure gold, like transparent glass. And I saw no temple in it, for the Lord God, the Almighty, and the Lamb, are its temple. And the city has no need of the sun or of the moon to shine upon it, for the glory of God has illumined it, and its lamp is the Lamb. And the nations shall walk by its light, and the kings of the earth shall bring their glory into it…. and nothing unclean and no one who practices abomination and lying, shall ever come into it, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life.”
  B. Just a little humor to prove this point: There was once a man who went to heaven carrying a suitcase. Met at the gate of heaven by Peter, he was told that he could not bring anything with him into heaven. The man heartily disagreed, saying that God Himself told him that he could bring in the contents of his luggage. Peter went and asked God, and to his surprise, God confirmed the man’s story. So Peter let this man into heaven, but once admitted inside, Peter asked if he could see what the man was carrying in his luggage. The man obliged, and upon opening his bag, Peter at first glimpse of the contents of gold, said, “You brought pavement?”
  C. Psalm 19:9,10: “The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever; the judgments of the Lord are true; they are righteous altogether. They are more desirable than gold, yes, than much fine gold …”
 4. “To cultivate and keep it”
  A. Just as God worked, so we were created to work. God created work, He ordained work, and He blessed the fruit of our labors. He also condemned idleness and indolence.
  B. What glorious and delightful work it was too. Everyone enjoys working in his or her garden, but how much more would we enjoy the work if we did not have to contend with weeds and thorns? Remember, sin had not entered the world yet, so neither had the ground been cursed yet. We are physical creatures, created in such a way that not only are our bodies capable of work, but actually require physical labor to stay healthy.

TUESDAY, August 19
Prayer
Praise: Great Is Thy Faithfulness
Memorize Thy Word: Psalm 8:3-9, Philippians 3:20,21, and Malachi 2:15,16
Memorize: The Five Books of Poetry in the Old Testament
Lesson: What Does God Say About Work?

 Growing up in a family who regarded work as a duty and a privilege and whose parents enjoyed working and serving others, I just naturally desired to become a part of the family enterprise and share in their enjoyment. I loved serving my dad and mom, helping in our home and in our family business in any way I could, yet it was not until I became intimate with my Heavenly Father that I realized God’s purpose for my life and His marvelous design for family members and each of their roles. Then as I combined my biblical understanding with my historical research of other people and their cultures, I came to the realization that how people view their gods forms their thinking and their values, which in turn affects how they view work and their roles, subsequently affecting their entire social structure, and consequently, the quality of their lives. For we all become like the god whom we revere.
 What does the Bible say about the God whom we serve? “For in six days the one True God, the Lord, my Lord, made the heavens and the earth, the sea and all that is in them” (Ex. 20:11). “And God saw all that He had made, and behold, it was very good” (Gen. 1:31). “His work is perfect” (Deut. 32:4). “All His work is done in faithfulness” (Ps. 33:4). “O Lord, how many are Thy works! In wisdom Thou hast made them all” (Ps. 104:24). “The heavens are telling of the glory of God; and their expanse is declaring the work of His hands” (Ps. 19:1). “And the people served the Lord all the days of Joshua … who had seen all the great work of the Lord which He had done for Israel” (Judg. 2:7). 
 God’s work was perfect in every way, reflecting His glory, wisdom, and faithfulness to His people. His great works continued through His Son, for Jesus said, “My Father is working until now, and I Myself am working” (John 5:17). And He continues even now through the power of His Holy Spirit, which He places in each of His children. “… God’s grace which was given to me according to the working of His power” (Eph. 3:7). 
 Unlike other cultures whose people despised work and even held their laborers and oftentimes their women in contempt, the Hebrews viewed work as a duty and a blessing, regarding even the lowliest of positions with dignity and honor. Why? Because while all other gods lived for ease, pleasure, and debauchery, the Hebrews’ God, our very own, created work, ordained work, mandated work, honored work, blessed work, Himself worked, and, even now, perpetually works in the lives of His creations. So whereas virtually all other cultures abhorred manual labor and their laborers, the children of God highly esteemed work and even the lowliest of workers. Again, because they spent time with their Father, they knew Him and became like Him.
 How can we become like our God? David charges his son Solomon to know the God of his father and serve Him with a whole heart and a willing mind (1 Chron. 28:9). He himself continued to meditate on God’s great deeds and declare them to others, exhorting each of us to do the same. “I will meditate on all Thy work … What god is great like our God?” (Ps. 77:12,13). “Great are the works of the Lord; they are studied by all who delight in them. Splendid and majestic is His work … He has made His wonders to be remembered” (Ps. 111:2-4). “On the glorious splendor of Thy majesty, and on Thy wonderful works, I will meditate” (Ps. 145:5). “How awesome are Thy works! … Come and see the works of God, who is awesome in His deeds toward the sons of men” (Ps. 66:3,5). “… declare the work of God … consider what He has done” (Ps. 64:9).
 We must consider all God has done. We must meditate on His entire Word. We must declare the work and truth of God.
 Although men look upon outward appearances, God always looks upon the heart. Men revere riches and honor, whereas God reveres a humble heart. Men desire glory and honor; yet only God deserves glory and honor. God’s ways are not men’s ways.
 Contrary to our way of thinking, God has always used seemingly ordinary men for extraordinary jobs. Consider Noah who built the first ocean liner, yet we are not told of any great position that he held—only that he was a righteous man, blameless in his time, and that he walked with God (Gen. 6:9) and in reverence built an ark (Heb. 11:7). Jacob who bore the sons of the future twelve tribes was just a lowly shepherd, as was Moses who led God’s children out of Israel, and David who became the greatest king who ever lived. Nehemiah who rebuilt Jerusalem’s walls was a cupbearer to the king; Elisha was a plowman; and Amos was a herdsman and grower of sycamore figs. God’s very own Son was a carpenter; the great apostles were fishermen; and Paul was a tentmaker.
 Contrary to the Western world’s widely held belief that only those who have a college degree will ever be successful, God chooses men not based on their degrees, but for their submissive heart and devotion to Him.
 God chose Noah because he was righteous and blameless and walked with his Lord (Gen. 6:9). And this was important because God needed a man who would be obedient regardless of the circumstances. To think that Noah had never seen rain and yet God warned him of a great flood to come and asked him to build a boat with dimensions that were inconceivable at that time in history was pretty amazing. And furthermore, to realize that it took 120 years to construct, all while men and women continued to laugh and scorn him—now that is running the race with endurance! And it is said that Noah did according to all that God had commanded him (Gen. 6:22; 7:5). 
 How could any man bear such ridicule? Hebrews 11:7 says, “By faith Noah, being warned by God about things not yet seen, in reverence prepared an ark.” Each of these men revered God and therefore trusted Him to empower them to fulfill the tasks He had called them to undertake, regardless of the difficulty.
 Consider, too, that not only does the Word of God use “work” over 600 times and mentions over 200 different occupations, God begins His Word working and commanding His first children to do the same. For after God created the first man, He placed him in a garden and commanded him to cultivate and keep it. Then He saw that “there was not found a helper suitable for him” (Gen. 2:20). A helper to do what? To help man complete the work God had called him to do. So God created woman.
 While Adam and Eve were the first caretakers of the land, the majority of people since have cultivated and kept the land, working to provide food, shelter, clothing, and other necessities for living. Each family therefore worked together as a unit for the welfare of the entire family, which in turn helped bond the family together and subsequently brought harmony to them. Unfortunately in our own country with the advance of the Industrial Revolution, families no longer needed to live and work together for their sustenance, and this, combined with the lure for bigger and better things coupled with the propaganda of the media and public education, drastically changed the makeup of the family, which once worked together to provide the help, support, guidance, and encouragement that was so common here. How sad, yet now we are witnessing many homeschooling families returning to God’s original design for families, which greatly blesses our hearts.
 Recently a father told Jon, “Surely you don’t want Jedidiah to work as hard as you do, Jon. I certainly do not want my sons to work as hard as I do.”
 Jon replied, “Why? Work is mandated and blessed by God. Hard work builds character. I not only desire that my sons work hard, but I expect them to work hard all their lives.”
 Unfortunately, many fathers hope that their sons don’t have to work as hard as they do or did as kids. However, that is not in agreement with what God says about work, nor is that in alignment with God’s example set by Himself and His Son.
 It would be wise for each of us to examine our minds and hearts to see what perception we have of our God. We also need to consider how we really view work, how we view our purpose on this earth, and how we view each of our roles. From this we need to determine if our thinking is in alignment with God’s desire for our lives and then make the necessary changes to ensure that our children are headed in the right direction. Are we about our Father’s business?
 God doesn’t say that we should do our work in five days and play the other two. He says, “Six days you should labor and do all your work” (Ex. 20:9). Then God not only blesses the work of our hands but He makes the work joyful. “After you have gathered in from your threshing floor and your wine vat; and you shall rejoice in your feast … you shall celebrate a feast to the Lord your God … because the Lord your God will bless you in all your produce and in all the work of your hands, so that you will be altogether joyful” (Deut. 16:13-15).
 Who are we working for: God or ourselves? “We must work the works of Him who sent Me, as long as it is day; night is coming, when no man can work” (John 9:4). “Be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your toil is not in vain in the Lord” (1 Cor. 15:58). “Do all thing without grumbling or disputing” (Phil. 2:14). “Walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, to please Him in all respects, bearing fruit in every good work” (Col 1:10). “Whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the Lord rather than for men; knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance. It is the Lord Christ whom you serve” (Col. 3:23,24). “… useful to the Master, prepared for every good work” (2 Tim. 2:21). “… establish you in every good work” (2 Thes. 2:17).
 God condemns idleness and especially those who do not provide for their own household. “The desire of the sluggard puts him to death, for his hands refuse to work; all day long he is craving, while the righteous gives and does not hold back” (Prov. 21:25,26). “If anyone will not work, neither let him eat” (2 Thes. 3:10). “But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith, and is worse that an unbeliever” (1 Tim. 5:8). The wicked “do not pay attention to the deeds of the Lord, nor do they consider the work of His hands. Therefore My people go into exile for their lack of knowledge; and their honorable men are famished, and their multitude is parched with thirst” (Is. 5:12,13).
 Not so for the righteous who are about their Father’s work. For God rewards the work of His people. “Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we shall reap if we do not grow weary” (Gal. 6:9). “For Thou dost recompense a man according to his work” (Ps. 62:12). “Commit your works to the Lord, and your plans will be established” (Prov. 16:3). “Do you see a man skilled in his work? He will stand before kings” (Prov. 22:29). “Each man’s work will become evident … because it is to be revealed with fire … If any man’s work … remains, he shall receive a reward” (1 Cor. 3:13,14).
 Finally, let us remember that we are God’s fellow workers (1 Cor. 3:9). So “let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven” (Matt. 5:16). No matter where we are, we should continue to witness to those around us and to disciple those who seek His truth.

WEDNESDAY, August 20
Prayer
Praise: Great Is Thy Faithfulness
Memorize Thy Word: Psalm 8:3-9, Philippians 3:20,21, and Malachi 2:15,16
Memorize: The Five Books of Poetry in the Old Testament
Lesson: Adam Names the Animals

 Read Genesis 2:16,17: “And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, ‘From any tree of the garden you may eat freely; but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat from it you shall surely die.”
 1. Man was to have dominion and rule over the earth, but he was still to be in subjection to his Creator, his Lord and Master. Man was to rule the earth, but God still ruled man. Here, not only does God display His authority over man, but He also shows us that Adam was free to choose—God’s will that he might live, or his own will that would surely bring death. Eternal life in paradise was conditional upon man’s obedience to his Creator.
  A. Read Deuteronomy 30:19,20: “I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. So choose life in order that you may live, you and your descendants, by loving the Lord your God, by obeying His voice, and by holding fast to Him; for this is your life and the length of your days …”
  B. All our choices bear consequences, so “delight yourself in the Lord; and He will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord, trust also in Him, and He will do it. And He will bring forth your righteousness as the light…” (Psalm 37:4-6).
  C. “… Choose for yourselves today whom you will serve … as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord” (Joshua 24:15).
 2. Read Genesis 2:18-20: “Then the Lord God said, ‘It is not good for the man to be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him.’ And out of the ground the Lord God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the sky, and brought them to the man to see what he would call them; and whatever the man called a living creature, that was its name. And the man gave names to all the cattle, and to the birds of the sky, and to every beast of the field, but for Adam there was not found a helper suitable for him.”
  A. That he names the animals is not only proof that Adam was created in the image of his Creator possessing great intelligence, speech, and creative ability, but it also established the authority God gave man “over every living thing.” Furthermore, it displays God’s confidence in Adam’s ability, because “whatever the man called an animal that was its name.”
 3. Here we can plainly see a tenderhearted Father who deeply concerned Himself with the comfort of His child, not only that he would have someone for companionship, but someone who could have real fellowship with Adam, a soul mate so to speak. For man had the companionship of the animals, but he did not have a true soul mate, for animals did not have souls and therefore could not relate in that way. God knew that man needed someone to labor alongside him, to help him and care for him, someone to love him and have fellowship with him. Solomon in Ecclesiastes 4:9-11 said, “Two are better than one because they have a good return for their labor. For if either of them falls, the one will lift up his companion. But woe to the one who falls when there is not another to lift him up. Furthermore, it two lie down together they keep warm, but how can one be warm alone?”

THURSDAY, August 21
Prayer
Praise: Great Is Thy Faithfulness
Memorize Thy Word: Psalm 8:3-9, Philippians 3:20,21, and Malachi 2:15,16
Memorize: The Five Books of Poetry in the Old Testament
Lesson: Marriage

 Read Genesis 2:21-25: “So the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and he slept; then He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh at that place. And the Lord God fashioned into a woman the rib which He had taken from the man, and brought her to the man. And the man said ‘This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh; she call be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.’ For this cause a man shall leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave to his wife; and they shall become one flesh. And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed.”
 1. Who other than our Father, who knows us and wants what is best for us, is qualified to make such an important union. “And my God shall supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19). Children must not lean on their own understanding but in all their ways acknowledge Him (Proverbs 3:5).
 2. Pay particular attention to the fact that God did not ask for Adam’s help in creating Adam’s helpmate. God knows what is best for us and does not need any help from us in determining who would be the perfect helpmate for us. The picture of Adam peacefully sleeping while God was making such an important decision on his behalf sets the example that we should all follow, casting all our cares upon Him and resting in the knowledge that our Father knows what is best for His children.
 3. Woman or isha is a she-man created out of man and then joined back to man. Truly there is no relationship so perfectly fitted together as to be one in all ways. God took something out of Adam and then gave Adam back a part of himself to truly complete him. For woman was perfectly fitted to meet his needs as a helper and a true friend.
 4. Taking the rib from Adam’s side to make his bride is symbolic of Jesus’ side being pierced for His bride. For after Jesus died on the cross, “The soldiers therefore came, and broke the legs of the first man, and of the other man who was crucified with Him; but coming to Jesus, when they saw that He was already dead, they did not break His legs; but one of the soldiers pierced His side with a spear, and immediately there came out blood and water…. For these things came to pass, that the Scripture might be fulfilled, ‘Not a bone of Him shall be broken.’ And again another Scripture says, ‘They shall look on Him whom they pierced’” (John 19:32-37).
 5. Ephesians 5:25,26: “Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her; that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word.”
 6. Husbands are to love their wives, sacrificing their own desires for that which is best for their wives: to pray for them, provide for them, to cover and shield them from danger, to encourage them and build them up, to know them and give them the desires of their heart, to listen to them and talk with them, to lead them into righteousness, to be compassionate to them, gracious and abounding in lovingkindness just as Christ is towards His Bride-the church.
 7. Notice that Adam humbly and gratefully accepts God’s provision, as does Eve, who willingly submits to her husband.
 8. The Father bringing His daughter to His son is also given as an example for us to follow in marriage. Children, who are commanded by God to honor and obey their parents, who have depended on their parents’ provision up to this point, should in no way change for this decision, especially considering that this is the most important decision a child will make; therefore, they should not marry without their parents’ consent. It is Satan who deceives young people that they should be their own gods and choose for themselves a helpmate apart from their parents’ wisdom and counsel. Marriage is a solemn, sacred covenant divinely instituted by its Author. To use, “For this cause a man shall leave his father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife; and they shall become one flesh” (Matthew 19:5) to justify that parents are no longer to be honored is in direct opposition to God’s design for families, and furthermore contrary to God’s entire design for sons honoring their fathers, as Adam did here, and more importantly, how we are to continue to honor our heavenly Father. Instead, this verse is given to show that God requires us to stay married and work together as one. For cleave means “to unite or be united closely in interest or affection; to adhere with strong attachment.” Jesus explains this in Matthew 19:3-6: “And some Pharisees came to Him, testing him, and saying, ‘Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any cause at all?’ And He answered and said, ‘Have you not read, that He who created them from the beginning made them male and female, and said, “For this cause a man shall leave his father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife; and the two shall become one flesh”? Consequently they are no more two, but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let no man separate.’”
 9. Malachi 2:15,16: “…Take heed then, to your spirit, and let no one deal treacherously against the wife of your youth. ‘For I hate divorce,’ says the Lord…”
 10. For a very detailed article on marriage, please read our article entitled “The Solemn, Sacred, Holy Covenant of Marriage.”
 11. “And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed” because everything was holy—there was no sin. In the next lesson we will show the probability of Adam and Eve being clothed with God’s cloak of light. Psalm 104:1,2: “Thou art clothed with splendor and majesty, covering Thyself with light as with a cloak …”