Day 140: Why We Don’t Skim (1 Chronicles 1 & 2, John 7:23-53)

Today we’re reading 1 Chronicles 1 and 2. It’s a list of people. A long list of people. Sons, daughters, fathers. If you read this chapter aloud, you’re going to struggle to pronounce all of the names correctly and not get bored. But there’s something really interesting in this list if you slow down and pay careful attention. The author mixes things up a bit in 1 Chronicles 2:7.

“The son of Carmi: Achar, who brought trouble on Israel by violating the ban on taking devoted things…”

Achar is another name for Achan, a man we learned about in March (Joshua 6-7). Achan decided to, in a blatant act of disobedience, keep for himself the devoted things from a city that the Israelites attacked. As a result, the Israelite army suffered an overwhelming defeat and Achan’s entire family was killed. It’s interesting to see how this is the story that gets reiterated in these historical records. Perhaps God knew that we, as humans, needed to be reminded that our actions have consequences. We needed to be reminded of Achan’s example.

But beyond that, we needed a reason to read deeply. As a second grade teacher, I frequently find myself reminding students to slow down and reread. They have a tendency to skim through a book in an attempt to get to the next book…or to beat their friends. But when they skim, they miss out on details that could make or break a story.

So here we are, about halfway through the year…working our way through the tediousness of lineages and historical records. You may be tempted to skim through these lists. But when you do that, you miss out on the details that are tucked away in there. Take time to soak in the text. God’s Word is never meaningless (we’ll talk more about meaninglessness when we get to Ecclesiastes!).

Have you been tempted to skim over some of the more tedious texts? How do you make yourself power through the more boring sections of Scripture?

In life, do you try to push through tedious moments? What has God taught you when you’ve existed in a state of greater patience and taken the time to dwell in those moments?

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