January 19, 2023 - Good Morning! It’s Thursday, January 19.
On January 19, 1955, a new board game came on the scene. It was called Scrabble. Since that day, 150 million sets have been sold, in 120 countries, and in 30 languages. One out of every three American homes has a Scrabble game in the closet. My mom loved Scrabble and we played a lot growing up. My sister was the family champion. She beat me on a regular basis, and still does - a legacy that I have come to accept with grace (well, maybe not with grace). My daughters stubbornly refuse to play Scrabble. This is evidence that, somewhere along the way, I failed as a parent.
Did the characters in the Bible play board games? Did they play games at all? We know that there were athletic games. The first Olympics occurred 700 years before Bethlehem and the Apostle Paul fashions a spiritual metaphor out of “running the race”. But what about games like chess? History tells us it didn’t appear until five centuries after the New Testament.
Seven verses in the New Testament mention “casting lots” (70 times in the Old Testament). We’re not sure what “lots” were. Some think they were sticks of various lengths or stones of different sizes. Others believe they were the knuckle bones of sheep, which, because of their shape, can fall in only four positions. We find verses that speak of casting of lots to decide who got what land in the Promised Land, and who got what job in the Temple. The eleven disciples cast lots to decide who would replace Judas, and the Roman soldiers at Calvary cast lots over the clothing of Jesus.
The Bible never instructs us to roll dice or flip coins to decide what to do. It never teaches us to depend on horoscopes or fortune tellers to tell our future. The Word teaches us to depend on the wisdom of God and on the leading of the Holy Spirit.
Romans 5:18 - All who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are the children of God.
Meet you back here tomorrow,