The Seven Streams Method is an innovative way to go through the Bible in a year using Seven Streams that correspond with the days of the week. Narration by Serena Travis. Commentary by Drake Travis.
Jeremiah 8-10 We are in the Prophetic Stream today spendings some time with Jeremiah, the Weeping Prophet. We are using the Common English Bible this week. 7streamsmethod.com | @7StreamsMethod | @serenatravis | #7Streams | @drakewtravis Commentary by Dr. Drake Travis
God of Heaven, hear us when we pray. We see the mess that comes from disobedience. Let us be tender toward you, and listen. May we be clay that can be molded in your hands. We do not want to be like those we have read about today. Make us like you. Amen.
ch. 8 - begins midstream [continuing the thought that began in ch. 7] One version called it "...The Valley of Slaughter". This is the description of how bad things were in Jerusalem as it was approaching 600 B.C. Human sacrifice had been going on, the priests were agents of darkness and not taking people to God. They had been doing astrology full on; consulting moon and stars like pagans gone amok. So God would see to it that the bones of these false priests would be laid out before the heavens - it was much more like Hindu "theology" for this to happen v.s. Judaic theology wherein the followers are buried at their death v.s. eaten by birds or burned on pyres. Judeans had been playing with false religion so they were going to end up as such. It's a horror show, folks. God has been trying to talk to His people, but one may as well try to have a calm conversation with a scared cat! They run away, listen to lies, they're impenitent, oblivious to the Lord, they lie to themselves, lie about God and reject God outright. Judah will be stripped bare for what they are doing. The harvest will not come in... but the enemy will come. They've poisoned what God gave them and now they are poisoned. Healing? not happening. Jeremiah is very pained by all this.
9 - The first verses here is why Jeremiah is nicknamed the Weeping Prophet. What 'once was' compared to 'what is now' has decayed to such a sorry state of rottenness both spiritually and culturally. Deception is everywhere. The desolation they are seeing will soon completely overtake them. This once beautiful city will soon be worse off than a dog pen. Jeremiah saw distinctly what was coming for these people. He walked among them (for well over a generation of time) and pleaded, practically begged- trying to persuade them - imploring them to turn from wickedness. Btw, no one "converted" in his 60 years of ministering and prophesying. Jeremiah certainly had a discouraging assignment. The rebellious and callous ungodliness of these people -who had "firstborn" status with God- virtually broke Jeremiah's heart. There will be so many dead bodies when the Babylonians stomp through Judah! My God, My God, won't these people hear the warnings?!
10 - is a glaring rendition of the pure worthlessness and empty stupidity of idols: either making them, using them, or worshiping them in any manner. God is true, and living, and powerful, and renders justice, and applies his wrath properly. He controls all nature - these idol makers are fools; buffoons. Will you come home to Almighty God? Since you won't, you may as well get to packing up your things for you are going to be run out of here. Your injuries, your destroyed belongings, your decimated families ... what did you think would happen for ignoring the Lord's instruction?!
Then Jeremiah ends the reading today with a humble prayer that is 'one for the ages.' "Correct me Lord, but with justice, and not in your anger, or else you will reduce me to nothing." Jeremiah knew the times he was living in for certain.
Psalms 49-54 We are in the Wisdom Stream today. Dr. Drake is covering for Serena who is out with laryngitis. We are reading from the Common English Bible this week. 7streamsmethod.com | @7StreamsMethod | @serenatravis | #7Streams | @drakewtravis Commentary by Dr. Drake Travis
God we thank you for the strength, courage and we can draw from these Psalms. These are common men you engaged to have them later speak to us. Thank you. You lived in them. You live in us. Therefore let us be strengthened in the joy of the Lord. Amen Psalm 49 - opens with a herald of "hear ye, hear ye ..." It's a memo of all hearts, young/old, rich/poor, wise/fool. These Sons of Korah (the writers) reverence God and fear nothing in this world. The one thing that always wins on this earth; and has the last say is the grave. All are headed there. So of all the things we are to hope in ultimately is that God will redeem and take us to himself. This hope supersedes all hopes. Riches, wisdom, time - the things that most people spend their lives trying to gain are all destined to pass with us. So look to God for redemption.
50 - Here is another Psalm that was sung in the Temple. It certainly is regal. God does what He does in all His natural glory and magnificent splendor. God speaks and gathers His own. Amid all He does, God is mindful of us. It's like in this Psalm, He is stopping in to assure and encourage us to keep living for Him, remaining thankful, and honoring Him - for He delivers us from trouble. As for the wicked: The total opposite awaits them. The are unteachable, they steal, visit whores, lie, cheat, even bash their own families! They better reckon and walk right or God will tear them to pieces ---> with no one to rescue.
51 - David's soul has hit bottom (though he was at the top of his world). There wasn't an army he couldn't beat, a territory he couldn't attain, he was honored over the known world. Then during some "down time", he stole a man's wife. When he gets rebuked for it, he confesses and repents. We read this story in the history stream last week; II Sam.11&12 . Of all the great things David did, one wise old preacher said, that this prayer, this confession from Ps. 51 was David's greatest move. He wants mercy and a renewed relationship with God. David knows about God's unfailing love and He calls upon that love with all earnestness. David's broken spirit IS his sacrifice to God. This Psalm that David was transparent enough to utter, has been and still is, an inspiration to billions of Believers throughout all time.
52 - David had learned that an Edomite; Doeg had run and told Saul about David's whereabouts and thus Saul resumed his heated chase to find and kill David. Well David has a word for Doeg-the-tattler and we find it here in Psalm 52. The setting of this writing was in I Sam. 21:7 and 22:9. Doeg's presence was incidental but his obvious commitment to Saul over David is found out and is therefore what birthed this harsh word against him. God would ruin Doeg for this, though David would continue to thrive.
53 - Could this Psalm be called "The Tune of The Athiests"? The Hebrews knew all about this concept that God's goodness is followed or there is no good found anywhere because man on earth does not manufacture goodness. This phrasing is quoted near verbatim in Psalm 14, Paul says these words 1K/yrs later in Romans 3:10-12. It's the other end of the spectrum from modern-day pagans and New Agers who we may find chanting, "visualize smiles and loving worlds...visualize random kindness!" [poof] The godless turn out to be hollow and fearful and they end up scattered.
54 - This Psalm, as in #52, is written in response to people giving away David's location to Saul. This time it was the people of Ziph (far SE of Jerusalem). You can brief that at your leisure in I Sam. 26. David's reaction is to call to God (as
II Samuel 16-20 We are in the Nation Stream today and will discover what happens to the battle between King David and Prince Absalom. We are reading from the Common English Bible this week. 7streamsmethod.com | @7StreamsMethod | @serenatravis | #7Streams Commentary by Dr. Drake Travis
Lord, you preserved David through these difficult years, and we are comforted by your preservation of the King. We also gain reassurance knowing that you do the same for us. Amen.
We are in the heart of David's troublesome years. I think the Absalom factor cut David the deepest. Absalom was not in line for the throne, though there may have been generational priority over Solomon. I mean, really, Solomon was the son of Bathsheba - a wife obtained through illicit processes but... Be that as it may, David's affections for his womEn [plural] had created a sequence of events that birthed chaos and pained David the rest of his days. So here we are in the thick of the skirmish caused by his "pretty-boy" son who felt he deserved even more than was due him. A strong motif today is seen in how David treats each and every-one.
16 - The revelation of loyalties v.s. disaffections, the treachery and the intrigue of today's reading unfolds as a very high stakes, life and death chess game. We never can tell what each person's next move is going to be. David is still enroute fleeing Jerusalem -namely Absalom; his rebel son, when he encounters Mephibosheth's aid; Ziba. M- was Saul's grandson whom David was endeared to and took him in. David still honors them despite the national tension. Then Shimei appears. He was a relative of Saul's. Shimei is a agitated soul and curses David. This was extremely foolish since David is guarded by warriors who could kill Shimei at any moment. Oddly enough David halts any possible retaliation and lets Shimei yap away. This seems to reveal that DAvid is still feeling guilty --> Seriously, the king being treated this way (and musing about it being God's doing) just isn't right. But all things considered, David is being overly gracious these days. Remember, David's attitude toward Absalom is basically, "oh well, let him be King now..." (huh!?)
Next Ahithophel reveals how far gone he is by advising Absalom to violate his father's concubines on rooftop in view of all the people. Absalom obliges. It's like Jerusalem has gone crazy.
17 - Ahithophel then advises that 12K soldiers go hunt down David to scatter the soldiers and isolate David for the kill. Absalom [who's gone amok] loves the plan. Hushai intercepts (at God's prompting) and advises to pull in all Israel "against" David so that David and Co. can annihiliate Absalom's support. Hushai then goes completely stealth to spirit away and warn David of what's coming. Ahithophel learns his advice wasn't followed, so he goes home and hangs himself. Gee, where did anyone think this turncoat rebel would end up?
Meanwhile refreshment and comfort is provided to David's men so they are ready for battle.
18 - David snaps back into warrior-mode. He organized matters brilliantly under his command (On their departure he gives comment about Absalom - that puzzles his men more than anything) --> and off they ride into the battle! David's victory is swift and decisive as 20,000 of Absalom's loyalists (Israelites) are killed. Absalom, fleeing on a mule (not exactly a valiant picture!) gets himself killed/hung by his neck in a tree. Joab learns of Absalom hanging in a tree unable to get free and he thrusts him through with three javelins (today's translation of "sticks" is a trifle weak). This rebellion ends. The victory is grand though grievous for David as his son was killed. He leaves his men in a bit of a lurch as he mourns Absalom's death in a rather protracted (and pathetic) manner. The victory, for him was an internal conflict that he couldn't resolve.
19 - General
Exodus 23-26 We are reading more of the law and the instructions for the Ark of the Covenant and the Tabernacle today. We are reading from the Common English Bible this week. 7streamsmethod.com | @7StreamsMethod | @serenatravis | #7Streams Commentary by Dr. Drake Travis
Lord God Almighty, seeing you and experiencing you is why we are alive. Prepare US to meet YOU. Amen.
23 - The Book of the Covenant (Ex.21-24) continues and we finish that today [23,24] plus read the first two chapters that give directions for the Tabernacle [25,26]. To summarize 23: there will be justice and mercy. do not follow rumors or tell lies or lie as a witness, Justice means no favoritism, follow decency- not sentiment, take no bribes and do not oppress newcomers. The land needs a Sabbath (ea.7th year), as do you and your slaves (ea.7th day). Follow no other gods. You will have festivals and celebrations in each season and God will be in the middle of them. People may ponder this but of a truth we all know; people either party with God or they will party with the Devil. God is commanding that they keep Him in the middle of their celebrations and He institutes these celebrations to assure the culture be a God-centered culture. So much can be said about the dietary matters of blood, the yeast, the fat, the cooking process, the prohibition of mixing meat with the milk of that same animal - there is a landmark book titled Purity & Danger by Mary Douglas  that offers a good explanation of the depth of this. It all could be summed up that God wants us to be whole and healthy and well. Many particular meats especially are unsanitary, from disorderly garbage minded-animals, putrid and therein they lend toward insanity and symbolize chaos. They were to avoid them and everything about them. Each person will bring offerings to God / no one comes empty-handed. God led them via Moses and He was also sending an angel ahead of them (this "Messenger") This angel would protect against enemies, diseases, displacement, or becoming cowardly. They will have security and must avoid false gods.
24 - The Covenant is confirmed in an over-whelming event of effects and visions and fire and smoke and colors and revelations of God this all let the people know that God is abundantly serious and excited about what He is laying down here! The Israelites pledged to God and the elders proceeded into a venue that was most impressive. In case anyone is wondering, the word "lapis-lazuli tiles" is the light effect of azure-blue or sapphire. It's a deep sky color one sees when looking upward from an airplane at a high altitude. Here they are seeing God. My heavens! Moses then goes up into the cloud to listen/converse with God. Keep in mind that as we are reading the next 7 chapters (do not get bored amid the details of ch. 25-31!) Moses is IN the cloud getting these matters noted straight from God as He is talking to him. What an experience. This time OMG means OMG literally!
25 - The offerings for the Tabernacle are to be gathered. This is very precious material being stored up. The instructions for the Ark are given as are the Table and the Lampstand. It may help to see this better by searching "The Tabernacle of Moses". This opens a series of sketchings. Most impressive is the one with the tall flame above the actual Tabernacle. This is the flame that God brought down along with the cloud that we read of at the end of Exodus 40. This assured that God was with them - that's all anyone needs to know, really. But at the present there is alot of preparation yet to do to welcome God into their presence in majesty that will help make an impression on these people they will never forget.
26 - The dimensions of the Tabernacle are given. The details are many and we may feel belabored by all this, but it matters. It matters to God so it needs to matter to us. [
I Corinthians 1-3 We are starting a new book in the Church Stream! We are reading from the Easy-to-Read Version this week. 7streamsmethod.com | @7StreamsMethod | @serenatravis | #7Streams Commentary by Dr. Drake Travis
God, thank you for caring for us enough to walk us through such matters as we read about today. Church and Christian Fellowship is the best place on earth to find support and comfort, safety, strength, discipleship, and teaching. You certainly love your bride; the church. And we are grateful - because it is us you love. Amen.
Paul wrote this letter from Ephesus to the Corinthian church after he had left the first time. Corinth was along a busy trade route. It was a cultural and wealthy city of influence. Paul was spurred to write the Believers in Corinth because leaders from there had come to visit him in Ephesus as they were in duress and vexed with how to handle troubles, sin, misconduct, plus relational and doctrinal matters back in Corinth. [btw, Olympic trials were held here before Paul arrived and shortly after he had left.] There was an Aphrodite Temple above town. It had been closed by the New Testament era but there were residual effects from it in Corinth, Paul ended up addressing this issue also. It became an influential church and Paul was fervent to see them "aright their ship". For within a century there would be a population of 3/4Million people in the area, so now was the time to set the church straight.
1 - Paul encourages them that they are holy because they belong to Christ Jesus. The Greek culture had a goal of attaining a perfect body and a perfected mind. [E.g. the muscle-bound statues, the 'thinker', etc.] We can still view this art today. This was a Grecian's grid of value. and Paul wanted them to know that their value was that they belonged to Christ. This was news! Churches here (as elsewhere) had not built central meeting places. That happened a couple of centuries after Rome had committed to stop harassing and executing Christians. Churches met in homes, halls, fields, caves and were therefore almost never "all together" as a unified group. The tendency was to become competitive. They were following different factions they had created. Paul reminded them that they were all following Christ, together, so stop bickering. And it was vital that they understand the Cross. Greeks didn't like it because they felt, "why follow a man who surrendered himself to die? I don't want to die. I'll follow Apollos! He's alive..."
[or we'll follow Peter or Paul or Aquila]. And then there were the Jews who were taught for 1400 years that a lamb was to be sacrificed, not a human. That was too much like Molech or the pagans in Rome. yuck! As you see, Paul needed to explain the Cross to them....[and to us!] And because of this Cross, Jesus is your strength, your mind, your justification, your freedom.
2 - It was important that their confidence switch from being rooted in human thinking (mind worship) to confidence in Christ. THIS is the root of true wisdom. The Greek mind and language structure was a rather brilliant system - it still affects the way we think and talk even today. But it is the wisdom of God, found in Christ Jesus, that we access through His Holy Spirit that leads to true wisdom that transforms us and the world. This is the wisdom that Paul mentors us into finding and living by. God has such marvels and wonders to share with us and bring us to, but we won't find this life in Him via a human path or cranial activity. We will find it by surrendering to Him, His wisdom, His Spirit.
3 - Paul takes the time to tell them that the teachers that pass through their live are God's Servants - not Their Masters. Follow Christ, let the teachers guide you, and the arguing and comparing would simply cease - as it needed to! The Greeks (and Corinth is a city in Greece) were very i
Mark 8:27-9:50 We are in the Christ Stream today and reading from the Easy-to-Read Version this week. 7streamsmethod.com | @7StreamsMethod | @serenatravis | #7Streams Commentary by Dr. Drake Travis
Jesus, the wild and varied road of discipleship with you is as exciting as ever. Thank you for including us as your disciples. Heaven is worth it, and so is each moment with you.
Mark 8:27ff - They are walking north from Galilee to Caesarea Phillippi (21 miles straight, rather longer than that on foot). The discussion that ensues needs to happen: "who is Jesus?" The disciples start quoting this guy and that guy and this guy... This was a trademark of Jewish scholarship. Jesus wanted to know what they thought. Jesus asks us the same question today. And we need to answer it. Our eternity rests upon our answer of this question. Peter and Jesus' interaction here and in the next story are wedded truths that must both be accepted: Jesus is the Savior and he must be crucified as a sacrifice for us. Learning this --> IS discipleship. It's not an easy truth to ingest. Peter's attempt to correct Jesus gets a swift and stinging rebuttal. We are to follow Jesus whole-heartedly, single-mindedly, boldly. Getting "on page" with Him is the issue. We are not to try to mold Jesus to fit our agenda and worldview. He shapes ours.
9 - The disciples would witness the coming of the Power of God - Pentecost is what they being assured of in the opening statement of ch. 9.
-The Transfiguration is a vital lesson in the revelation of paradise, eschatology (end times study), and Resurrection theology. The Israelites had a notion of heaven and the next world but it is an under-developed segment of theology for them. Most of what we believe about heaven/paradise/the next world we learn from Jesus' teaching. So here are three of the disciples that realize that Jesus has instant access to other worlds. That the prophets are not dead. They see Elijah - who had "died" 700 years ago, and Moses - who died 1300 years ago. What?! You're alive? You're here?! Those who work for God and follow His Son do not die. It's quite a grand testimony, certainly worth telling to the world (when the time is right)! Upon returning, there is another showdown centered around another demon-possession victim. Matthew and Luke tell of this same story in a much abbreviated 6-verse version. Mark tells it in full. The lynch-pin is that the 9 disciples who didn't witness the Transfiguration gave it a go to free the youngster from Demons while Jesus was away. They did not succeed. Jesus' reply to this development was tongue-in-cheek curt response to motivate them to move up to His level. Jesus wants them to be able to expel demons from people. We all hope the reaction was that they insist Jesus teach THEM how to cleanse the demon-possessed and not wither into insecurity because it sounds like Jesus might have insulted them. Following Jesus in not for the faint of heart, btw.
Next, Jesus tells of his crucifixion again. He did so five times between this session in Galilee and the arrival in Jerusalem. [Mark tells us of four of them]. Talk of his Passion during what we call Easter week wasn't mentioned much prior to this. But Jesus wanted them to be certain of what was coming. However they are still not 'getting it' yet.'
-The next verse tale is proof that the gravity of what was coming at Calvary wasn't sinking in at this point --> They are arguing about who's the greatest, [as if Cassius Clay was among them as one of the disciples). Jesus teaching about serving and having a child-like heart is perfect timing again. It's still shaking up the leadership world today. Awesome.
-The word of Jesus and His powerful Name is spreading as someone other than them is ministering in Jesus' name. The disciples aren't sure what to make of this. "Jesus" wasn't going to be a small clu
Great Bible reading system
This is a unique way to read the Word. I love everything about it! Two of my daughters are enjoying it as well. Love love love.
Wonderful way to start the day
This is a tremendous podcast. Serena's friendly voice helps the scripture come alive. I listen in the morning before getting out of bed and its a great way to start the day. I really appreciate the benefit of reading from a single book compared to smaller segments of three or four books for maintaing context. Would highly recommend.
Bible Reading for Busy People
The reader for this podcast has a soothing voice and great expression that make listening to the Bible enjoyable and productive. She reads at a pace that accommodates reading along or just listening. I like the focus of the 7 stream method and find it easy to navigate through older recordings to go straight through a section when I want to. Each recording ends with a brief prayer and a review of the events in the reading. If you struggle to find time to read your Bible, subscribe to this podcast and listen on the go. You'll enjoy it!