Summary: Commuter Bible is an audio Bible podcast to match your weekly schedule. Published Monday-Friday, major holidays excluded. In the course of a year, you can listen to the entire Bible. Subscribe today and get more of God's Word in your daily life.
The gospel of Mark is one of the three synoptic gospels, “Synoptic” basically means “seeing the same thing,” the other two of which are Matthew and Luke. Historical evidence from early church fathers affirms that the apostle Peter is the one who passed these reports on to his attendant and writer, John Mark. Mark’s gospel is the shortest, but the most action-packed, as he includes a number of accounts and moves quickly from one scene to the next. connecting his stories with phrases like “immediately,” “just then” and “as soon as.” We also get a sense for how hectic life must have been for Jesus, as crowds push in around him demanding more and more of His time.
The life of Jacob, who is now known as Israel, comes to close as he takes his last breath in Egypt. He blesses Joseph’s sons, and makes them a part of his family’s inheritance. After he takes his final breath, Joseph’s brothers fear that he will seek vengeance, but Joseph remembers God’s grace and provision.
On our last episode we saw how the Lord orchestrated Joseph’s life to save the lives of many in the face of a coming famine. When his brothers show up to ask for food, they don’t recognize Joseph, but Joseph recognizes them. He declares them to be spies, and after a series of questions, he send them away and demands they bring their younger brother back to Egypt to see if they are telling the truth.
When Joseph is sold into slavery it seems that he has lost it all, except that Joseph has not lost what is most important: he hasn’t lost God’s divine and unmerited favor. God orchestrates the salvation of His people and sustains the country of Egypt through Joseph. His circumstances seem devastating in the short term, and remarkable in hindsight. As we’re told in Romans 8:28 “We know that all things work together for the good of those who love God, who are called according to His purpose.”
When we last left Jacob and his sons, they had slaughtered an entire city of men after their sister, Dinah, had been defiled by the chief’s son. In today’s episode, God officially gives Jacob the name of Israel, and directs his family to relocate to Bethel. There we learn more about Rachel’s firstborn son Joseph, who Israel favors above all his other sons. If that wasn’t enough to draw the ire of his brothers, Joseph begins to have dreams where he is exalted above the rest of his family.
Today on Commuter Bible – Laban and Jacob have a shouting match, Jacob and God have a wrestling match, and Jacob realizes he is no match for his brother Esau. A note to parents of young ones, you may want to check out the beginning of chapter 34 before continuing. After 20 years of working under Laban and trying to establish himself, Jacob deceives Laban by sneaking away with his family. Laban pursues him and, as families tend to do, they have a heated discussion about which one has wronged the other one more. After coming to terms, they part ways, and Jacob prepares to meet his brother Esau, who at last hearing, had murder on his mind.
Today on Commuter Bible – Jacob pulls the wool over his dad’s eyes by pulling goat skin over his own body. It also becomes apparent that Jacob has absolutely no idea how breeding works, and yet God allows his flocks to increase. When you step back and think about it, I think most of us have no idea what we’re doing, and yet God is gracious anyway. Jacob the deceiver lives up to his name. He goes to great lengths to disguise himself from his blind and aging father, tricking him into thinking that he is Esau instead. Rachel and Jacob come up with a way to trick Isaac yet again, and Isaac sends him to another country, thereby avoiding the wrath of Esau. Even though Jacob meets the receiving end of deception at the hands of Laban, and tries his hand at manipulating Laban’s riches, God continues to grant favor to Jacob.
It’s time for us to say goodbye to Abraham and Sarah as the story of Abraham’s family continues on after Him. God provides for Isaac as he did for His father Abraham, multiplying his riches and blessing him with children. His sons Jacob and Esau have a contentious relationship with one another, and their lives are marked by anger, deception, impatience, fear, and selfishness.
In our last episode, the Lord visited Abraham by sending three messengers to his home. He revealed that in a years time he would give Abraham a son. He also revealed that he was sending his messengers to Sodom and Gomorrah, because their sin had grown so severe that it called for destruction. Before they are sent out, Abraham pleads with the Lord to spare the righteous. The Lord agrees that if even ten righteous people are found there, he will not destroy it.
Today we get to see the Lord’s faithfulness to a sinful man who doubts, who wavers, who makes poor decisions, but who ultimately responds to the Lord’s instruction. In His kindness, the Lord makes promises to Abram, promises that will last from one generation to the next, on and on through the ages. The Lord makes these promises, not because His hands are tied if Abram doesn’t cooperate, but to show the world that He is a God of steadfast love and sovereign provision.
After generations of mankind’s constant outpouring of wickedness, the Lord decided to send a flood to wipe out Creation, saving only those men and creatures whom he had chosen to enter the ark that he had commanded to be built. The Bible clearly shows us that sin continued through Noah and his family through the generations, and at the Tower of Babel, we’ll see that men chose to use their God-given creativity to defy God Himself, disobeying God’s command to fill the earth. The opt instead, to make a name for themselves, but God graciously scatters them. Later, God decides to make one man, a man with both faults and virtues, into a father of nations, and we meet that man today.
In our last episode God declared that he was going to put an end to mankind for their constant outpouring of evil and sinfulness. In His mercy, God decided to spare Noah and his family and gave him specific instructions for building an ark that support them and a bevy of animals for a full year, until the floodwaters recede. Today we see what happens when the floodgates of the sky are opened upon Creation.
In our last episode God spoke Creation into existence and formed man from the dust of the ground in the image of God Himself. He blessed mankind and gave them every green plant for food, except for the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. The serpent deceived Eve while Adam stood by silently, and both of them chose to rebel against God. Their rebellion led to division: their relationship with a holy God was tainted, their relationship with each other was fractured, even Creation itself felt the weight of their sin. The sons of Adam continue in rebellion and disobedience, causing chaos and bloodshed, driven by sinful and selfish desires, ultimately, God decides to hit the reset button.
Genesis 1-3 and Psalm 1. CSB translation. Genesis is a book of beginnings as it lays a foundation for the rest of Scripture. Here especially in the first three chapters we the beauty of God’s good and ordered creation, His clear direction in creating mankind in His own image, and His generous provision both before and after sin. Here, too, we see man’s relationship with God fall from one of peace, unity, and harmony into one of disorder and division as man rejects God’s good design and sins against His Maker.
Commuter Bible is an audio Bible to match your weekly schedule. 5 episodes a week, less than 30 minutes an episode, with major holidays excluded from the schedule.