Two Wealthy Men in the Bible

King Solomon and Job were both very wealthy men. Solomon was worth 7 Trillion Dollars! We can learn from both of them.

Solomon Sought God

1 Kings 9:2, “The Lord appeared to Solomon a second time, in the same way he had appeared to him at Gibeon.” New English Translation

The first time Solomon was in a high place, and the second time was in Jerusalem. Both times, God spoke to him in a dream.

Solomon Fortified Cities

2 Chronicles 8:5, “He…fortified cities with walls and barred gates.” NET

1 Kings 9:15, “…the work crews King Solomon conscripted to build…the cities of Hazor, Megiddo, and Gezer.” NET

We saw the 6-sectioned gates that King Solomon built at Tel Megiddo. It was a sunny spring day until we reached the top, (see “The Heat of Summer”). There were soldiers stationed in each section making it difficult to break through the gates.

Solomon Conducted Research

Ecclesiastes 2:3, “I thought deeply about the effects of indulging myself with wine (all the while my mind was guiding me with wisdom) and the effects of behaving foolishly, so that I might discover what is profitable for people to do on earth during the few days of their lives.” NET

Ecclesiastes 2:9, “So I was far wealthier than all my predecessors in Jerusalem, yet I maintained my objectivity.” NET

He did not choose the amassing of riches as his goal. He found achievements and possessions “ultimately profitless – like chasing the wind,” v. 11.

Solomon Invested

Ecclesiastes 11:1, “Send your grain overseas, for after many days you will get a return.” NET

The King James Version Bible says, “Cast your bread upon the waters…” I envisioned a person baking a loaf of bread and throwing the pieces into the water. Many had used this verse in fundraising, and I still felt like you were throwing the money away.

The New International Version Bible says, “Ship your grain overseas…” That makes it clear the grain has a purpose. You may be shipping it to sell or to help in a famine. It’s deliberate. Even in giving, I’m responsible to know that my funds are “feeding the children.”

Solomon’s Conclusions

  1. He found the benefits of wisdom were ultimately meaningless because both the wise man and the fool die and are forgotten, Ecclesiastes 2:15-16.
  2. It is futile for a man to do his work with wisdom, knowledge, and skill because he must hand over the fruit of his labor as an inheritance to someone who did not work for it, Ecclesiastes 2:21.
  3. The best thing is to eat, drink, and find enjoyment in your work, Ecclesiastes 2:24.
  4. There is nothing better than to be happy and to enjoy yourself, Ecclesiastes 3:12.
  5. When you are excessively righteous or excessively wise, you will be disappointed, Ecclesiastes 7:16.
  6. Sharpen the ax head to exert less effort and be successful, Ecclesiastes 10:10.

The Second Wealthy Man – Job

“The quest for wisdom involves pain… Pain thereby becomes a challenge for wisdom and for our concept of God’s behavior. …not every theological claim made by Job and his friends is necessarily endorsed by this book. …God charged the three friends with speaking inaccurately about Him.

…when faced with the problem of theodicy, (explaining the presence of evil in the world in light of God’s wisdom and justice), silence, rather than human reasoning, may be a more virtuous alternative.

…Job is a demanding literary work that tends to presuppose that its readers are already well acquainted with…Proverbs and Psalms. …Even Jesus was not spared affliction and the theodicy problem. This was made clear when He cried out on the cross, ‘My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?’ (Matthew 27:46; Mark 15:34).”

New English Translation Introduction to the book of Job


Job 5:17, “Therefore, blessed is the man whom God corrects, so do not despise the discipline of the Almighty.” NET

Correction can be simple. Example: A line of soldiers facing forward and one facing to the right. The drill sergeant will correct him by turning him forward. Then they can all march together.

Correction is harder if you are turned backward and God wants you to go forward. Repentance is simply turning around. In the case of the soldiers, the one going the wrong way will get run into over and over.

When I feel like everything is running into me – I should repent and be corrected. I turn around!

2023 Rainbow Bible Reading Guide ©2009-2023  All Rights Reserved.

Business and Contentment

A year ago, we were traveling over the Golan Heights. I didn’t get a picture of the “cedars of Lebanon” because the weather did not cooperate. There was snow on the ground and it was still snowing.

On the way down the snow turned to rain. Elle pointed them out as we drove by – a patch of evergreen on the side of the mountain.

They were cut down and exported to the palaces of the conquerors of the land. Solomon recognized they were the best wood for building the temple.

Solomon Made a Business Deal

1 Kings 5:6, “So now order some cedars of Lebanon to be cut for me. My servants will work with your servants. I will pay your servants whatever you say is appropriate, for you know that we have no one among us who knows how to cut down trees like the Sidonians.” New English Translation


  1. Outlined the work needed.
  2. Offered laborers.
  3. Let them set the pay.
  4. Admitted they were the experts.
  5. Used the highest quality.
  6. Bartered for payment by meeting their need.
  7. Asked the Lord for wisdom, guidance, and power.
  8. Didn’t abuse his worker’s time with their families. (They worked one month and had two months off.)
  9. Was generous and fair with wages.

Solomon Gilded Everything

2 Chronicles 3:7, “He overlaid the temple’s rafters, thresholds, walls, and doors with gold; he carved decorative cherubim on the walls.” NET

Even the rafters were gold-plated! (That makes me want to paint the floor joists that serve as the ceiling in our basement.)

The Key to Contentment

1 Kings 8:66, “On the fifteenth day after the festival started, he dismissed the people. They asked God to empower the king and then went to their homes, happy and content because of all the good the Lord had done for his servant David and his people Israel.” NET

The keys to happiness and contentment are:

  • Pray for your leaders.
  • Go home.
  • Thank God for the good He has done for your country.

Not a fan of your mayor, governor, or president? Remember verse 32, God condemns the guilty, declares who is innocent, and gives both of them what they deserve.

The more time I spend shopping, the less content I am in my home.

The Kind of Leaders to Pray into Office

2 Chronicles 6:12-14, “He stood before the altar of the Lord… 13) …and then got down on his knees in front of the entire assembly of Israel. He spread out his hands toward the sky. 14) And prayed…” NET

Proverbs 28:1, “The wicked person fled, though no one was pursuing, but the righteous can be as confident as a lion.” NET

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Lessons from King Solomon

I was preparing to watch Gideon for a few hours. He had a long week because work kept Mamma away for two days. He loved having her all to himself on her day off.

This was day two of “Weekend to Remember” which both Mamma and Daddy attended. He was having fun with his Grandmas but he missed them.

King Solomon gave me advice for his time with us.

Proverbs 15:30, “A bright look brings joy to the heart, and good news gives health to the body.” New English Translation

I greeted him with a bright smile and a hug. I sent him down the hall for a surprise – Grandpa had the day off! They played catch, got the mail, and filled the bird feeder.

I got out my doll and her accessories. He practiced being a big brother. He was all smiles when his “Amma” picked him up.

You can learn a lot from Solomon.

Seek God First

1 Kings 3:4, “The king went to Gibeon to offer sacrifices, for it had the most prominent of the high places. Solomon would offer up 1,000 burnt sacrifices on the altar there.” NET

Solomon offered sacrifices at high places and he continued to do so after the temple was built. Was he hoping God would reappear in a dream again?

The tree line is one of the high places where sacrifices were made. This one was on the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem.

He Knew Right from Wrong

1 Kings 3:9, “So give your servant a discerning mind so he can make judicial decisions for your people and distinguish right from wrong. Otherwise, no one is able to make judicial decisions for this great nation of yours.” NET

He was tested with his first case.

1 Kings 3:16, “Then two prostitutes came to the king…” NET

This case was for two women no one cared about. They were used, abused, and cast aside. No one stood with them. The baby was illegitimate; no one cared for it, except his mother, v. 27.

He Learned About Marital Love

Song of Solomon 3:4, “Scarcely had I passed them by when I found my beloved! I held onto him tightly and would not let him go until I brought him to my mother’s house, to the bedroom chamber of the one who conceived me.” NET

“…watch as she finds him and fills with joy but then warns herself against letting love move too quickly. Feel the tension of wanting more but slowing things down. …”

New English Translation note on Song of Solomon 3:1-11


Song of Solomon 5:6, “I opened for my beloved, but my lover had already turned and gone away. I fell into despair when he departed. I looked for him but did not find him; I called him but he did not answer me.” NET

“Does it comfort you to know that love doesn’t always proceed without problems? …Spend time reflecting on the truth that Jesus is the reconciler of relationships and He has called us to the ministry of reconciliation (2 Corinthians 5:18-21).”

NET notes on Song of Solomon 5:2-8


Song of Solomon 7:10, “I am my beloved’s and he desires me!” NET

“Total commitment is the foundation of love, protecting it so it can grow into the level of delight expressed in this chapter.”

NET note on Song of Solomon 7:1-13


He Wrote It Down

1 Kings 4:32-33, “He composed 3,000 proverbs and 1,005 songs. 33) He produced manuals on botany, describing every kind of plant, from the cedars of Lebanon to the hyssop that grows on the walls. He also produced manuals on biology, describing animals, birds, insects, and fish.” NET

Some of Solomon’s Proverbs

Proverbs 3:1-2, “My child, do not forget my teaching, but let your heart keep my commandments, 2) for they will provide a long and full life, and well-being for you.” NET

  1. Mercy and truth bring favor and good understanding, 3:4-5.
  2. Trusting and acknowledging God makes your path straight, 3:6.
  3. Being humble, revering God, and turning from evil brings healing for your body and refreshment for your soul, 3:7-8.
  4. Honoring the Lord from your wealth brings a full barn and vats overflowing with wine, 3:9-10.

Wisdom and Understanding:

  • Are more precious than gold or silver, 3:14.
  • Are more precious than rubies or anything you desire, 3:15; 8:11.
  • Bring long life, riches, and honor, 3:16; 4:10; 8:18.
  • Brings pleasant and peaceful paths, security with no stumbling, 3:17, 23; 4:12; 8:20.
  • Are like a tree of life, bringing blessing, 3:18.
  • Established the foundations of the earth and the heavens, 3:19.
  • Brings pleasant sleep without fear, 3:24.
  • Protects and guards you, 4:6.

What Obstacles Do I Need to Remove in My Daily Steps?

Proverbs 4:26, “Make the path of your feet level, so that all your ways may be established.” NET

Proverbs 7:1, “My child, devote yourself to my words and store up my commands inside yourself.” NET

Proverbs 11:4, “Wealth does not profit in the day of wrath, but righteousness delivers from death.” NET

Proverbs 15:1, “A gentle response turns away anger, but a harsh word stirs up wrath.” NET

Proverbs 16:23, “A wise person’s heart makes his speech wise and it adds persuasiveness to his words.” NET

I can remove distractions, devote myself to His words and commandments, seek righteousness, give a gentle response, and store wisdom in my heart.

2023 Rainbow Bible Reading Guide ©2009-2023  All Rights Reserved.

The Terebinth Tree

God cares about the tiniest details in our lives. It was no coincidence that I was reading Proverbs 24 when I was considering cutting back on my workouts. (I read one Proverb a day.) I could do strength training twice a week, instead of three times, and take weekends off. Then I read…

Proverbs 24:5, “A wise warrior is strong and a man of knowledge makes his strength stronger.” New English Translation

I read how God cares about the world, my pain, my stress, my waiting, and my burdens.

Psalms 9:7-8, “But the Lord rules forever; he reigns in a just manner. 8) He judges the world fairly; he makes just legal decisions for the nations.” NET

Psalms 31:7, “I will be happy and rejoice in your faithfulness because you notice my pain and you are aware of how distressed I am.” NET

Psalms 31:24, “Be strong and confident all you who wait on the Lord.” NET

Psalms 55:22, “Throw your burden upon the Lord, and he will sustain you. He will never allow the godly to be shaken.” NET

King David

David’s son Absalom tried to take his throne. When facing war with him, he looked to God.

Psalms 3:8, “The Lord delivers; you show favor to your people.” NET

Psalms 4:1, “…Though I am hemmed in, you will lead me into a wide, open place. …” NET

David was escaping Jerusalem, where he was hemmed in, and headed to the desert. Yet, he chose to see the positive – a wide, open place.

He had many options for places to go. He wandered in the wilderness for 15 years when Saul was trying to kill him. He knew the towns and the water sources.

He crossed the river and spent the night in Bahurim. Early in the morning, he met God.

Psalms 4:3, “Realize that the Lord shows the godly special favor; the Lord responds when I cry out to him” NET

Psalms 5:3, “Lord, in the morning you will hear me; in the morning I will present my case to you and then wait expectantly for an answer.” NET

David laid down his worries, frustrations, disappointments, and fears. He waited expectantly for direction.

Psalms 5:8, “Lord, lead me in your righteousness because of those who wait to ambush me, remove the obstacles in the way in which you are guiding me.” NET

He knew Absalom wanted to ambush him and he recognized the Lord leading him to leave. He asked God to remove the obstacles before him, not the threat behind him.

Yet, he was human.

Psalms 6:6, “I am exhausted as I groan. All night long I drench my bed in tears; my tears saturate the cushion beneath me.” NET

He kept his focus on God.

Psalms 6:9, “The Lord has heard my appeal for mercy; the Lord has accepted my prayer.” NET

Then David wrote a beautiful Psalm of worship, Psalms 8, before the battle with Absalom!


2 Samuel 18:9, “…Now as Absalom was riding on his mule, it went under the branches of a large oak tree. His head got caught in the oak and he was suspended in midair, while the mule he had been riding kept going.” NET

In Israel, I learned “the large oak” was called a Terebinth tree. The branches grew close together and it is easy to see how his hair got tangled.

This Terebinth tree was growing on top of Tel Hazor.

I noticed two things in this verse:

  1. Absalom let the mule lead. He wouldn’t have turned into the Terebinth tree if he had been guiding it.
  2. The source of his pride – his hair (see 2 Samuel 14:25-26) – snared him, leading to his death.

(Am I riding out the day or directing it – choosing the activities that are the most important? What is my greatest source of pride?)

“Because Absalom had rebelled against his father, David’s men pursued Absalom and his militia. …Think about how David’s love for his son is similar to God’s love for you. …God spared your life because of His love.”

NET notes on 2 Samuel 18:1-15


“David mourned his son, despite how his son had treated him. Imagine God mourning over you in this way, desiring to take your place and save you (see v. 33). Think about God’s choice to allow Jesus’ death on the cross in your place.”

NET notes on 2 Samuel 18:29-19:7


Joab and Amasa

2 Samuel 20:9-10, “Joab said to Amasa, “How are you, my brother?’ With his right hand, Joab took hold of Amasa’s beard as if to greet him with a kiss. 10) Amasa did not protect himself from the knife in Joab’s other hand, and Joab stabbed him in the abdomen, causing Amasa’s intestines to spill out on the ground. …” NET

Amasa just faced Joab in the war with Absalom, 17:25. He was promoted to Joab’s place in the army, 19:13. Why would he trust him?

Joab was cousin, 17:25.

Proverbs 24:1, “Do not envy evil people, do not desire to be with them.” NET

The Choice

2 Samuel 22:24, “I was blameless before him; I kept myself from sinning.” NET

I always have a choice. I chose to sin or leave, speak or press my lips together. I am envious or I thank God for blessing others.

The amazing thing is God forgave me before I sinned, spoke, or gave in to envy. Jesus paid the price for all of my failures before I was born. (See, “Save me, Jesus.”)

2023 Rainbow Bible Reading Guide ©2009-2023  All Rights Reserved.

The Temple

Don’t Even Look at the Ark

2 Samuel 6:3, “…Uzzah and Ahio, the sons of Abinadab were guiding the new cart.” New English Translation

Ahio guided the oxen and Uzzah was walking beside the cart. He knew he was not to touch the cloth-covered ark.

Did Uzzah stare at it? Did he use the oxen stumbling as an excuse to satisfy his curiosity? He could have steadied the cart without touching the ark.

This is why Jesus told us not to even look at something or someone that is forbidden, Matthew 5:28.

Holy Attire

It was the Sunday before Valentine’s Day. I have four Valentine’s Day pins. I put three of them on my black fedora hat band. I couldn’t decide whether to wear it or not.

1 Chronicles 16:29, “…Worship the Lord in holy attire.” NET

I left the hat at home. I pinned the fourth pin with a cord attached to it on my coat. You pull the cord and a bear pops out of the heart. I showed the pin to Gideon before church. He loved pulling the cord and being surprised by the bear.

He gave me a magnet that he made with his mommy Rachel. It was a heart made out of his thumbprints.

A Drummer Was Their Leader

1 Chronicles 16:5, “…Asaph was to sound the cymbals.” NET

“Leading the group of musicians was Asaph (v. 5), a man who wrote many Psalms. …”

NEt Note on 1 Chronicles 16:4-36


Live in the House of the Lord

Psalms 27:4, “I have asked the Lord for one thing – this is what I desire! I want to live in the Lord’s house all the days of my life, so I can gaze at the splendor of the Lord and contemplate in his temple.” NET

Our satellite church meets in a Civic Center. Another church in town meets at the middle school. The temple in Israel is gone; they pray at the western wall.

Living in the house of the Lord is no longer possible. But, churches and temples are where people gather to feel God’s presence because where two or three are gathered, Jesus is there, Matthew 18:20!

Build a House for God

2 Samuel 7:5, 11, “…The Lord has said: Do you intend to build a house for me to live in? 11) …The Lord declares to you that he himself will build a dynastic house for you.” NET

David wanted to build a house for God. Instead, God built his house. Jesus was called a “son of David.”

1 Chronicles 18:6, “…The Lord protected David wherever he campaigned.” NET

Model of the temple

God’s Mercy

Psalms 51:1, “Have mercy on me, O God, because of your loyal love. Because of your great compassion, wipe away my rebellious acts.” NET

“Only God’s mercy opens our eyes to our own sin (vv. 1-3). Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal areas of sin from this past week. If you are not aware of any sin, ask the Spirit to reveal blind spots or hard-heartedness.”

NET Notes on Psalms 51:1-17


Things I Pondered

  1. Did Michal, Saul’s daughter, refer to David’s other wives as “slave girls,” 2 Samuel 6:22?
  2. Do I sing loudly and joyfully, 1 Chronicles 15:16?
  3. The night is for predatory animals, Psalms 104:21-23.
  4. Only God can save us in a war, 2 Samuel 10:12; Isaiah 59:1.
  5. A wise and discerning person restrains his words and stays calm, Proverbs 17:27.
  6. Looking to the Lord for help frees me from the enemy’s net, Psalms 25:15.
  7. I will be satisfied with the good things of your holy place, Psalms 65:4.

2023 Rainbow Bible Reading Guide ©2009-2023  All Rights Reserved.

En Gedi, Mount Gilboa, Hezekiah’s Tunnel

How is 2023 going? Are you keeping your head down to avoid potshots? Or are you in plain sight fighting for your life with everyone watching?

Perhaps, like me, you are going through a tunnel. You thought you would have been through it by now.

We just read about hiding in caves, battling on a mountain, and walking through a tunnel.

En Gedi

1 Samuel 23:29, “Then David went up from there and stayed in the strongholds of En Gedi.” New English Translation

The strongholds were caves up above the waterfall. The terrain was difficult. Only the hardiest among us climbed up to the spring. David and I walked back to the welcoming center and ate ice cream. (I had already twisted my left ankle twice!)

En Gedi is in the middle of the Judean Wilderness. I’m sure David became especially thirsty there.

Psalms 63:1, “O God, you are my God, I long for you. My soul thirsts for you, my flesh yearns for you, in a dry and parched land where there is no water.” NET

Mount Gilboa

1 Samuel 28:8, “…Use your ritual pit to conjure up for me the one I tell you.” NET

Using a medium was a pit – a trap – knowing the future destroys today. He didn’t enjoy the day and night before the battle with his sons and men. They could have eaten around the fire recalling past victories and exploits. That would have built up their strength and courage.

Instead, he didn’t eat. He collapsed on the ground drained of energy, 1 Samuel 28:20. He sat on a bed, (v. 23), for hours while she slaughtered a calf, waited for the blood to drain, mixed up bread, waited for it to rise, she roasted the meat, baked the bread, and then they ate.

He sat on a bed worrying about the future. He was trapped.

“As you reflect on Saul’s disobedience, consider the sources of your guidance and counsel. Are those sources aligned with God and His Word? Or do they represent worldly perspectives?”

New English Translation note on 1 Samuel 28:1-7


1 Samuel 31:7, “When the men of Israel who were in the valley and across the Jordan saw that the men of Israel had fled and that Saul and his sons were dead, they abandoned the cities and fled.” NET

You could see for miles on top of Mount Gilboa. And people could see you if they knew what color you were wearing. David watched me climb to the top and saw right away when I started back down after twisting my ankle. He walked back to meet me because he knew something was wrong.

Hezekiah’s Tunnel

2 Samuel 5:8, “David said on that day, ‘Whoever attacks the Jebusites must approach the “lame” and the “blind” who are David’s enemies by going through the water tunnel.'” NET

There are two tunnels in the “City of David.” David’s tunnel has running water and you need a cave light to traverse it. It was much longer. Three brave souls went through it.

Hezekiah’s tunnel was well-lit with blue accent lights at the Gihon Spring. There were dry steps and a handrail to assist you as you walk through. The rest of us went through it.

We went to Solomon’s pool and waited for the men in David’s tunnel.

Two tunnels for two purposes. David went through the first tunnel to conquer the city. It was wet, (the water was up to the waist in some places), dark, (they could only see a few feet in front of them), and long. At the end of the tunnel was a battle to take the city. (That may be like the tunnel you are in. Keep going.)

Entrance to Warren’s shaft in Hezekiah’s tunnel.

Hezekiah’s tunnel was dug out to keep a source of fresh water during a siege. It was easier because the goal was water.

The reward for the long, hard tunnel was a city! Hard tunnel = great reward.

Other Things I Noted

  1. David asked the Lord twice before he attacked the Philistines, 1 Samuel 23:2-4.
  2. Abigail was described as wise and then beautiful, 1 Samuel 25:3 and Proverbs 11:2.
  3. The Lord rewards each man for his integrity and loyalty, 1 Samuel 26:23.
  4. Look to God for protection and he will accomplish awesome, faithful deeds, Psalms 17:7.
  5. David left 200 men with the equipment when he went to fight Nabal, too, 1 Samuel 25:13 and 1 Samuel 30:10.
  6. Those who have no desire to bless anyone experience no blessings, Psalms 109:17.
  7. Ziklag burned but David moved to Hebron and was crowned king a little later, 1 Samuel 30:1-31 and 2 Samuel 2:3-4.
  8. God sent some soldiers to David every day, 1 Chronicles 12:22.

2023 Rainbow Bible Reading Guide ©2009-2023  All Rights Reserved.

Do I Fear God?

In a meeting with John Bevere in 1994, Jim Bakker said, “John, this prison wasn’t God’s judgment on my life. It was his mercy. John, if I would have kept living the way I was living, I would have ended up in hell forever and ever. I am so grateful to God. …I loved Jesus. I didn’t fear God.”

Those words haunted me as I read this week. Looking back, I recognize times when I didn’t fear God. I wasn’t alone.

The Sons of Eli and Samuel

1 Samuel 8:3, “But his sons did not follow his ways. Instead, they made money dishonestly, accepted bribes, and perverted justice.” New English Translation

Eli’s sons disregarded the holy things and gave in to their lust. Samuel’s sons became greedy and dishonest. They didn’t fear God.

Like them, our battle is with the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, see 1 John 2:15-17.

“…ask God to help you become a strong, honest, competent, and godly leader like Samuel…”

New English Translation note on 1 Samuel 7:13-17



1 Samuel 14:10, “But if they say, ‘Come up against us,’ we will go up. For in that case, the Lord has given them into the hand of Israel!” NET

Jonathan asked for a sign, just like Gideon. His father Saul didn’t know he went. Gideon’s father didn’t know Gideon tore down the idol of Baal, Judges 6:25-32.

“Jonathan, Saul’s son, bravely decides to attack the Philistines and has great faith in the Lord’s protection and provision (v.6). …Tired, outnumbered, and without proper weapons, he faces incredible odds, yet his faith in God’s strength and power makes him a victor.”

NET note on 1 Samuel 14:24-26



1 Samuel 14:35, “Then Saul built an altar for the Lord; it was the first time he had built an altar for the Lord.” NET

In 1 Samuel 13:6-14, Saul offered sacrifices on an altar someone else built. The altar and the sacrifices were prepared for Samuel. This time, Saul honored God by building the altar and providing the sacrifice.

1 Samuel 15:23, “For rebellion is like the sin of divination, and presumption is like the evil of idolatry. …” NET

Saul lost his fear of God. (Dear God, keep me from rebellion and presumption.)

Why I Choose to Fear God

Psalms 23:1, “The Lord is my shepherd; I lack nothing.” NET

  • He leads me, v. 2-3.
  • He strengthens me, v. 3.
  • He is with me, v. 4.
  • He feeds me, v. 4.
  • He refreshes me, v. 5.
  • He pursues me, v. 6.

Benefits of Fearing God


1 Samuel 20:3, “…there is about one step between me and death! …” NET

“Put yourself in David’s situation. A king has relentlessly sought to kill you. Although you’ve experienced God’s protection and favor, anxiety creeps into your heart. What would you do? In this moment in David’s history, he sought the help of a friend…”

NET notes on 1 Samuel 20:1-11


Anxious? Call a friend. More importantly, be the friend others call. Trust your best friend – Jesus!


Psalms 50:15, “Pray to me when you are in trouble. I will deliver you, and you will honor me.” NET

Psalms 34:7, 9, “The angel of the Lord camps around the Lord’s loyal followers and delivers them. 9) Fear the Lord, you chosen people of his, for those who fear him lack nothing.” NET

To live a long happy life, don’t speak evil words or use deceptive speech, turn from evil, do what’s right, strive for peace, and promote peace, Psalms 34:12-14. Remember his teachings, keep his commandments, they provide a long, full life and well-being.” Proverbs 3:1-2.

Loyal Love

Psalms 36:5, 7, 10, “O Lord, your loyal love reaches to the sky, … 5) How precious is your loyal love, O God! …10) “Extend your loyal love to your faithful followers, …” NET

“David mentioned God’s mercy or loyal love (Hebrew, chesed) three times (vv. 5, 7, 10). Reflect on how the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit have each shown chesed to you.”

NET note on Psalms 36


I also pondered:

  1. Am I following empty things, 1 Samuel 12:21?
  2. What am I mourning that I should forget, 1 Samuel 16:1?
  3. Was David ruddy like his great-grandmother Ruth, 1 Samuel 16:12; Ruth 4:21-22?
  4. Did Eliab believe David killed a lion and a bear, see 1 Samuel 17:34-37? Is disbelief why he thought David was proud and deceitful, 1 Samuel 17:28?
  5. Did Jonathan give David the robe that designated him as heir apparent, 1 Samuel 18:4?
  6. If I had accomplished everything David had, would I still remain humble, 1 Samuel 18:23, 30?

A sculpture of a lyre at the entrance of the City of David

2023 Rainbow Bible Reading Guide ©2009-2023  All Rights Reserved.

How to Live

Jesus Taught Us to Be

  1. Grateful that we’re invited to the wedding banquet, Matthew 22:9.
  2. Looking for His return, Mark 13:24-27.
  3. Enduring, Matthew 24:13.
  4. Peaceful, not alarmed, Matthew 24:6.
  5. Faithfully working, Matthew 24:46.
  6. Calm, not distressed, John 14:1.
  7. Speaking plainly, John 16:29-30.

We finished reading the teachings of Jesus. We will return to the first four books of the New Testament on Palm Sunday.

We started reading about the first kings of Israel.

We Learn from Other’s Mistakes


“…[1 Samuel covers] the selection, reign, and rejection of King Saul and the God-ordained rise of David under him as his replacement…1 Samuel calls us to slow down and focus on David as a common man with uncommon faith and integrity whom the Lord chose to replace a failed king.”

New English Translation
Introduction to 1 Samuel


Saul lived and died as King. But after he disobeyed God, his life was miserable.

God didn’t “strike him with lightning” but He let Saul know that Jonathan would not reign.

His regret turned to bitterness and jealousy consumed him. He spent the last fifteen years of his life hunting David and trying to kill him.

(I may be a common woman but I can live my life with uncommon faith and integrity.)


1 Samuel 2:25-26, “…But Eli’s sons would not listen to their father. Indeed, the Lord had decided to kill them. 26) However, the boy Samuel was growing up and finding favor both with the Lord and with people.” New English Translation

Even though Eli’s sons were doomed, God allowed them to live while Samuel was growing up. They may have thought they could do as they pleased without consequences. They were wrong.

The people told Eli of his son’s behavior, 2:22. A man of God came to Eli and warned him, 2:27-36. Then Samuel told him the future, 3:3-18.

1 Samuel 2:30, “…I will honor those who honor me, but those who despise me will be cursed.” NET

People of Beth Shemesh

1 Samuel 6:19, “But the Lord struck down some of the people of Beth Shemesh because they had looked into the ark of the Lord; he struck down 50,070 of the men. …” NET

In the first battle, 4000 men died, 4:2. In the second, 30,000 died, 4:10. But when the people of Beth Shemesh looked into the ark, 50,070 men died. Even the High Priest was not allowed to do that!

They fought in hills like these.

How are we to live? Grateful, expecting, enduring, peacefully, faithfully, calmly, speaking plainly, obediently, full of faith, with integrity, honoring God, and reverently.

2023 Rainbow Bible Reading Guide ©2009-2023  All Rights Reserved.

More Questions

Why Do I Worry?

Luke 12:25, “And which of you by worrying can add an hour to his life?” New English Translation

Last year, Derek auditioned for a couple of worship pastor positions. David was excited.

I cried and cried and cried. I worried because that would leave us with two instrumentalists and two vocalists on Sunday mornings. When would I see Gideon?

I wrestled with God and finally gave up. I decided God can move his children anywhere.

They prayed about each position and God closed the doors. I lost a few hours worrying for nothing!

Later, God moved our guitar player and soundman. We miss them.

Sunday, we had a new guitar player join the worship team. Our oldest son Luke will play part-time. (We share him with the army.)

When I was a teen, I dreamed of having a family band. Back then, family bands traveled from place to place. I’m much happier playing with my family in one place! That was another secret desire God granted me.

Did I Say That Out Loud?

John 11:16, “So Thomas (called Didymus) said to his fellow disciples, ‘Let us go too, so that we may die with him.'” New English Translation

I can identify with Thomas. My thoughts have popped out of my mouth more times than I care to admit. And I wonder, “Did I say that out loud?”

Caiaphas showed me the cure. Study the Bible and the Bible will come out of your mouth.

John 11:51, “(Now he did not say this on his own, but because he was high priest that year, he prophesied that Jesus was going to die for the Jewish nation.)” New English Translation

How Did He Disperse the Crowds?

Matthew 19:2, “Large crowds followed him, and he healed them.” New English Translation

Last week, I questioned how Jesus dispersed the crowds. Here’s my answer – “He healed them!”

Not everyone needed healing, some needed a kind word. Some were satisfied to go home and ponder His teachings.

But it would take hours. Perhaps this is why He sent His disciples ahead in the boat. He knew they would tire while waiting. And why He fell asleep in the boat?

Matthew 19:13, “Then little children were brought to him for him to lay his hands on them and pray. But the disciples scolded those who brought them.” New English Translation

When Jesus fed the five thousand, they only counted the men. They had large families. Who knows how many were there – 20,000? Or more?

Yet, he took the time to lay his hands on each child and pray for them. Then He went on his way, verse 15.

Have I Ever Been a Spy?

Luke 20:20, “Then they watched him carefully and sent spies who pretended to be sincere…” New English Translation

Have I ever been a spy – judging another church? Or a Christian artist? Or organization? Repeating what they said?

Am I spying to find faults or to make myself look better? Even worse, do I gossip about it?
Dear God, forgive me!

“Why do you think hypocrites and prideful people will receive a more severe punishment (v. 47)? Ask God to show you any areas of hypocrisy or pride in your life. Ask God for forgiveness and strength to live a humble life.”

New English Translation notes on Luke 20:45-47

What Else Did I Learn?

  1. The Lord sent others ahead of himself, Luke 10:1.
  2. I need to stay salty, Luke 14:34.
  3. Jesus loved Martha and Mary equally, John 11:5.
  4. I can either hush the hurting or encourage them to go to Jesus, Mark 10:48-49.

The steps to the temple where Jesus taught.

2023 Rainbow Bible Reading Guide ©2009-2023  All Rights Reserved.


John the Baptist Asked

Matthew 11:2, “…he sent his disciples to ask a question.” New English Translation

John’s question was for his disciples’ sake. He wanted to decrease so Jesus would increase, John 3:30. He didn’t want his disciples to follow him to death but to follow Jesus to eternal life. Jesus confirmed who John was in verse 10.

Peter Asked

Matthew 17:27, “But so we don’t offend them, go to the lake and throw out a hook. Take the first fish that comes up, and when you open its mouth, you will find a four-drachma coin. Take that and give it to them for me and you.” New English Translation

This picture was taken from the Faith Boat on the Sea of Galilee.

Jesus performed a miracle – a fish catching a coin and then biting Peter’s hook! He provided the tax money for Peter and Himself.

He didn’t provide it for his 11 closest disciples, the other 70, or the women who followed Him. He provided for Peter because he asked.

God is a personal God. He meets the needs of individuals.

When we give, we can’t help everyone. We look for those nearby to help.

Ask for Forgiveness, Release the Guilt

John 8:11, “…and Jesus said, ‘I do not condemn you either. Go, and from now on do not sin anymore.'” New English Translation

If Jesus does not condemn me, why do I condemn myself?

“Imagine Jesus saying verse 10 directly to you; then respond to Him in prayer…name and repent of the…sins that come to mind. Ask God to bring you into the light (v. 12).”

New English Translation notes on John 8:1-12


“Go, and because you have had an encounter with Jesus, you can rise above your past.”

The Word for You Today, 1-13-23


In Case You Asked

John 10:22, “Then came the Feast of the Dedication of Jerusalem.” New English Translation

What is the Feast of Dedication? Hanukkah!

“…The commemoration of the dedication…of the temple by Judas Maccabeus in December, 165 BC, after it had been profaned by Antiochus IV Epiphanes… This was the last great deliverance the Jews had experienced. …”

New International Version Study Bible notes on John 10:22


“…Antiochus IV Epiphanes (…who ruled from 175-164 BC) …attempted to consolidate his empire through a policy of radical Hellenization. [Creating a world united by Greek language and culture]. …

He…attempted to destroy all copies of the Torah [the first five books of the Bible] and required offerings to the Greek god Zeus. His crowning outrage was the erection of a statue of Zeus and the sacrificing of a pig in the Jerusalem temple itself. …

This triggered the Maccabean revolt, a 24-year war (166-142 BC) that resulted in the independence of Judah until the Romans took control in 63 BC.”

“The Time Between the Testaments,”
New International Version Study Bible,
pp. 1571-1573


Questions That I Asked Myself

  1. Do I know the Bible, or Book of the Law, well enough to defend my faith, John 7:50-51?
  2. How did Jesus disperse the crowds? Did He bless them, heal them, shake their hands, or have a word for each one, Matthew 14:22?
  3. What is in my heart? Dare I even ask, Matthew 15:18?
  4. Is my mind set on God’s interests, Matthew 16:23?
  5. What do I possess that Jesus can multiply, Mark 8:1-21?
  6. Do I sprinkle the good news like salt or dump too much out at once? Am I at peace with everyone, Mark 9:50?

Join me in reading the 2023 Rainbow Bible Reading Guide. I would love to hear from you in the comments section below!

©2009-2023 All Rights Reserved.