— Read and listen to the Bible being read at the same time; also, A. R. Wells, 1908, shares a (self-application) “tiny meditation” on each chapter.
The Creation of the Earth
Click for a brief easy English summary of the book of Genesis.
1) Read the “tiny meditation” before and/or after you read the Bible chapter to help make a self-appllication of the scriptures read.
2) Want to use both your eye gate and ear gate in taking in the Word? Just click the “Read” chapter to get started.
Click to Read Genesis 1—My Creator
It is God who made all things, and God is good. I need not fear anything God has made. Christ was with God in the beginning, and “without Him was not anything made.” I must read all the New Testament into the first chapter of Genesis. God saw that it all was good. As I go forth into the beautiful world I also shall see it to be good, if I have God’s Spirit within me, and am taught of Him how to see. Lord, open Thou mine eyes.
Click to Read Genesis 2—My Edens
What made Eden? The presence of God. That presence will make my home an Eden today; my school, my shop, my office. Lord, help me to bring it about. What did God’s presence do for Eden? It gave to mere dust the breath of life and the glow of intelligence. It created eye-pleasantness and body-food. It established society and love. It will do all that for my life, however bare and lonely it may be.
I must keep my desires in hand, for it is through them I shall fall, if I fall at all. Let me watch my “little” temptations, and remember that the smallest of them may be my undoing. If any Eden is shut against me, it is because of my sin, and it will be opened to me because of my Saviour. What is my besetting sin? Lord, help me to overcome it.
Read Genesis 4—My Brother
Envy and murder are twin iniquities. If there is a man I envy, I am in the pathway of Cain. When I begin to ask, “Am I my brother’s keeper? I begin to be his murderer. There is only one safe rule of conduct with reference to any man, and that is the Golden Rule. What brother has God sent me whom I am not “keeping?”
Cain and Abel’s Offerings
Read Genesis 5—My Old Age
Am I preparing a vigorous old age for myself? Health is a duty, because health alone makes it possible to perform well my other duties. Long life is a duty — as long a life as God designs for me. The longer I live, if I live well, the more valuable will I be to God’s work. Let me prepare for myself Enoch’s splendid epitaph. Oh, may I walk with God today. Have I any habit of body or mind that will prevent it?
Read Genesis 6—My Separation
There is evil in the world around me, a terrible mass of evil; but I can at least see to the purity of the world within me. Death is the doom of the wicked. Let me realize their fate, and shun it. “I will establish my covenant with thee,” says God to me. “Come ye out from among them, and be ye separate.” Lord, I will have no more communion with evil!
Read Genesis 7—My Ark
Sure as God’s word is the destruction of the wicked; and sin is so easy! I dare not at any minute hold myself safe from it. If I trust in my own wisdom, or resolution, or holiness, they fall to dust, and let in the black waters upon my soul. One ark I have, and one alone, sufficient and unfailing. It is Christ’s righteousness. “He sent from on high, he took me, he drew me out of many waters.” Lord, am I hid with Thee in Thy pavilion?
Read Genesis 8—My Safety
How many times, when the floods raged around me, has my God lifted me safely above them! And not a flood but has gone down at last. So many doves of hope have come to my ark, with the olive leaves of good cheer! I will praise the Lord for His protecting care. And I will praise Him for the future as for the past, for the promise that seed time and harvest shall continue, and His love clothe the world with blessings. O my God, how endlessly good art Thou!
Read Genesis 9—My Covenant
God has made a compact with me, and I with God. He has given me commandments, as He gave them to Noah; and a bow of promise, as He gave it to Noah. I will remember my covenant; God will remember His. I will not enter the church without remembering it, nor kneel in prayer, nor open the Bible. It shall overarch my life with rainbow splendors. My Father, help me this day to be true to Thee, as Thou wilt surely be true to me.
Am I building a Babel tower in the face of heaven? Am I rearing my ambitions over against God’s desires? Am I forgetting heaven in the allurements of earth? Do these dangers await me this day? Lord, overthrow my high tower of pride! Give me, O God, as the most blessed of Thy gifts, a wise and healthful humility.
Read Genesis 12—My Migration
I dwell in Ur of the Chaldees. Idols are all about me; in my home, in my heart. I hear a great voice, bidding me leave familiar scenes of the soul, break with old habits of sin, go forth, over whatever deserts, to Canaan and to God. O Abraham, for thy courage and faith! Give it to me, my Father, the God of Abraham! And give it to me today.
The Parting of Abraham and Lot
Read Genesis 13—My Choice
Lot Makes His Choice
Every day I am tempted by the Plain of Jordan. It is rich and fair. Every day God holds up before me the heights of Hebron. The soil is poorer there, the work is harder. But God is there, and calls me. Ah, let who will choose Sodom and Gomorrah! My choice, this day and all days,—God grant it!—shall be the hills.
Read Genesis 14—My Nine-tenths
Has Melchizedek, King of Salem, come yet to me? Has the priest of the Most High met me? Has he spread before me a table of delights? Ah, yes, yes! Every day is such a priest, and every event such a table! And what am I rendering unto the Lord for all these benefits? As much as Abraham? Surely it shall be no less. I would be Thy steward today, O my God.
Melchizedek Blesses Abraham
Read Genesis 15—My Promise
How full is my life of fear! And has not God promised to be my shield, and my exceeding great reward? Has he not come to me, in all horrors of great darkness? Has he not promised me all things,—height, depth, things present, things to come? Simply and trustingly, I will take the great gift; and I will walk today in the joy of it.
Read Genesis 16—My Protection
How often I am proud, as Hagar was, when God gives me a gift or a grace He does not give to others! And how often that pride drives me to the wilderness! But Thou dost find me there, O God, and dost bring me back with promises of safety. So protect me today, my God; and above all protect me from myself!
Read Genesis 17—My New Name
Thy covenants with me are many, my Father. Every morning multiplies them and every evening sees their fulfillment. Thou hast bought me with blessings; I am Thine, and proudly Thine! Change my name, in token of Thine ownership of me. I would be called by Thy name. And I would not forget, a moment of this day, whose I am, and whom I serve.
Read Genesis 18—My Intercession
Abraham and the Three Angels, Murillo, 1670,
Souls all around me are going down into the pit. I see it, I note their descent, now slow, now rapid. What is it to me? Am I my brother’s keeper? Oh, for Abraham’s brotherhood! Oh, for his passion of intercession! Lord, I am ashamed of my prayers. Help me henceforth to take self out of them, and fill them with love.
Sodom and Gomorrah, John Martin, 1854
Read Genesis 19—My Peril
Am I in Lot’s plight? Have I chosen the city of the plain, the ways of the world? Let me recognize the danger of all worldliness–a danger far more terrible than any volcanic outburst. God will send His angels, yes, this very day, to lead me out of Sodom, up on to high land. And may I have the wisdom to follow!
Read Genesis 20—My Temptation
I shall be tempted today, as Abraham was, to put expediency in the place of truth and right. Whenever I do this, I bring others into peril, but myself far more. Lord, there is only one safety, and that is the truth. Help me to be true today, outwardly and inwardly, and in all things. Amen.
Read Genesis 21—My Wilderness
Not Hagar alone wanders in the wilderness of Beer-sheba. Many days have I spent there, and am likely to spend there again, because of my sins and the sins of others. But God has a well for me in that wilderness, and a voice to call me, and He is ready to cause the wilderness to blossom as the rose. Praise the Lord, O my soul!
Hagar and Ishmael, Charles Cazin, 1880
Read Genesis 22—My Obedience
Dost Thou ask my best, my dearest? Thou dost not ask in tyranny, but in love; not to despoil, but to enrich; not with the knife, but with the outstretched hand of blessing. Let me pursue His purpose, however threatening. For His will is life.
Abraham Offers Isaac
Read Genesis 23—My Dead
Ah, yes, Abraham; I too have my Machpelah, and it is becoming ever more crowded, as the years go by, with the mortal remains of the dear departed. How often my thoughts turn to Machpelah, and the tears rush to my eyes! O Thou resurrection Lord, help me to remember that they are not there, in the ground, but that my true Machpelah is heaven. How blessedly crowded heaven is getting to be! May this day’s living draw me nearer that abode of the obedient.
Read Genesis 24—My Alliances
Eliezer and Rebecca at the Well by Carlo Maratti
Such care as Abraham took that his house should not be allied with the Canaanites, and that his son should have a proper wife,—be this my care for my life alliances. Guide Thou my friendships, O God! Enter Thou all my associations and partnerships! May I go nowhere this day but Thou shalt go with me, nor embark to any enterprise in which Thou wilt not share.
Read Genesis 25—My Birthright
Am I, like Esau, selling my birthright? Alas, yes! For my birthright is power, and I sell it by sloth. And joy, and I sell it by sin. And peace, which I sell by ambition. And love, which I sell by selfishness. And God, whom I sell for a beggarly bit of this world. Let me hold on to my birthright, what remains of it; and, O God, help me through obedience to increase it to what it was!
Read Genesis 26—My Peace
It is so hard to turn the other cheek! So hard to be driven from well to well, and patiently to dig new ones! So hard to be reviled and answer not again! O Christ, impart to me Thy meekness, Thy forgiveness, Thy divine forgetfulness of injury. Today and forever let me forgive those that trespass against me, that Thou also mayest forgive my trespasses.
Read Genesis 27—My Deceptions
How simple and clear would be my life, were I only content with what my God sends me and plans for me! Let me no longer be a Jacob, scheming to get more than my share, to thrust myself into my brother’s place. Let me know that I can have no real blessing except in the place Thou hast prepared for me, O my Father!
Read Genesis 28 —My Bethels
Nearer, my God, to Thee! Though a cross raises me. Though, like the wanderer, I make a Bethel out of my stony griefs. Whatever draws me to Thee,—misfortune, failure, sickness, loss, ignominy, loneliness, fear,—all shall be bright and blessed; they shall be angels ascending and descending a golden stairway. May every hour of this day be as Bethel, my Father. Amen.
Read Genesis 29—My Postponements
Does the world cheat me, Laban-wise? Does it promise a reward and require double payment? Is joy deferred, and fruition? Let me be patient, and rather set my affection on things above. For God is a just master. His promise is sure. His reward is certain. His payment is prompt and generous. What matter the postponements of earth? I have a present God.
Read Genesis 30—My Craft
Jacob was shrewd, but he had no good from his shrewdness. He was a witty bargainer, but he often left God out of the compact. Let me not imitate him in this, nor envy wealth that is got without God. Let my craft be of unselfishness, and let me plan how others may increase.
Jacob Tricks Isaac
Read Genesis 31—My Wrongs
Men wrong me sometimes, as they wronged Jacob. Let me choose Christ’s manner of redress rather than Jacob’s. Let me love my enemies, and heap coals of fire on their heads. Thy way is best, O Christ, though it is hardest. Thy way is not hardest, O Christ, because Thou dost walk with me.
Read Genesis 32—My Peniels
Not the Angel of Jehovah wrestling with me can prevail against my hardness of heart, the intensity of my sinful will. Not the fierceness of my desire wrestling with God can prevail against God’s inevitable laws. I will cling! Oh, I will cling, as Jacob clung, to the heavenly messenger. And I will not let him go. And he will bless me.
Read Genesis 33—My Brother
Why do I not fear to meet my brother men? Have I not wronged them? In what I have failed to do, if not in what I have done. Let me not blame Jacob. Let me rather pray for a conscience as sensitive as his, and as righteous a fear of retribution! And, O God, let me be today a true brother to men!
Read Genesis 34—My Friend’s Wrong
I am too little troubled by the wrongs done to others, and too much troubled by the wrongs done myself. When sorrow is brought mountain-high upon another, I bear it complacently; when it is so much as dusted upon my head, I am frantic. Let me live more in the lives of others, for their defense, and upbuilding. Oh, I would be unselfish today!
Read Genesis 35—My Memorials
How often has God answered me in the day of my distress! He has been good to me, even when I have been most evil. Yet I do not set up memorials to His loving kindness, either outwardly or in my memory. I will think of Thy kindness more steadily, my Father; I will praise Thee with readier lip. And I will record Thy goodness where I and all men may know it.
God does not love all men alike, though He would like to, because not all men love Him alike. To His Josephs He gives coats of many colors. Shall I repine when I see another more richly blessed of God? Shall I envy him and seek his hurt? That would be to defeat my very desire. For I, too, may become a Joseph. Let me only be what God would have me be, and I shall have all I should like to have.
How many wiles has the devil! I cannot steel myself against them by philosophy, or custom, or regard for men’s opinion, or even my own self-respect. There is but one resource against temptation, and that is Thy presence, O Thou who wert tempted in all points as I am, Yet without sin! Oh, wilt Thou walk with me today!
Read Genesis 40—My Insight
Truly Joseph was right. Not dreams and interpretations alone, but all hidden things belong to God. There are many dark mysteries in life,–mysteries of sorrow, of fate, of pain, of sin, of the future. I will not try to interpret them, for God will show them to me, all I need, as I go on. God will be my vision and my understanding.
Read Genesis 41—My advancement
Joseph Becomes Ruler in Egypt
I perceive that all real progress in life comes like Joseph’s, by God’s appointment. Let me therefore stand still and labor, and trust God for advancement. It is He that must bid me “Come up higher.” Let me cease to consider where I am with respect to others, but only whether God is with me where I am.
Read Genesis 42—My Repentance
God grant that I may repent early and easily, not needing the spurs of affliction and danger! God grant that I may repent at once! Why should I need a famine and a long journey Egyptward to remind me of the brother I have wronged, and convict me of my sin? Lord, that I may make reparation this very day!
Read Genesis 43—My Magnanimity
A God Given Dream Fulfilled in God’s Way
In dealing with my brothers who have wronged me, am I, like Joseph, magnanimous, great-minded? When I withhold forgiveness, is it always for their growth in grace, and never for my own vindictiveness? Is my chief desire not to humiliate them, but to better them? Am I parvanimous or magnanimous?
Read Genesis 44—My Self-Sacrifice
When my brother is in danger, do I play the part of Judah? Am I as ready to plead for him with my life as with my tongue? Am I eager to take his yoke upon me, wear his chains, enter his cell? This would be taking Thy nature, O Christ, and entering into the joy of Thy spirit.
Read Genesis 45—My Reconciliation
When my brother sins against me, let my forgiveness be contemporary with his sin. For his good I may withhold the expression of it, but for my own good let me not postpone an instant the feeling itself. For to hate my brother is murder–murder not alone of him, but of myself, my joy, my peace, my power.
Joseph Reveals Himself to His Brothers
Read Genesis 46—My Goshens
What a sad journey for Jacob, down to Egypt, away from the land of promise, away from the hopes of the future! I have often taken just such journey. But God knows best. His Goshens, when He sends me there, are better than Canaan. They are lands where my hopes, seemingly frustrated, become a victorious multitude. I will trust Him wherever He leads me.
Read Genesis 47—My Dignity
If God go with me, I shall not fear, like Jacob, to stand before kings. Little though I am among the children of men, yet both I and they are as dust before the Almighty. When one looks off to Arcturus, what matters a few inches difference in height on our tiny earth? So shall I walk through life with erect head, if my God walks with me.
Read Genesis 48—My Blessing
No old man has ever laid his hand upon my head in blessing, or given me a portion of his goods, or foretold my destiny. But a greater blessing may be mine, an infinitely greater. Let me feel this day upon my head the hand of the Ancient of Days, and let the words of His blessing ring in my ears.
Read Genesis 49—My Fortune
These fates of the sons of Jacob were not selected at random, but where built up slowly through the years by themselves, and only announced by the wise patriarch. What future am I now constructing for myself and for posterity? Would I shrink from having it proclaimed? Nay, every word and deed of mine proclaims it!
Read Genesis 50—My Memory
What a train of power, of glory, of blessings, Jacob left behind him! And that in spite of his many faults. I have faults enough–more than his. What is the balance of my life? How will men remember me when I am gone? Oh, my God, help me to think of that today. Help me to live as, on my deathk-bed, I shall desire to have lived.
Note on Artwork: We try to share the orginal source of photos and paintings used on this site when known. Most are in the public domain category and several were found at freechristianimages.org, lavistachurchofchrist.org, and christianimagesource.org and are used with permission.