Posts Tagged ‘Descendants’

Genesis 35:11-16 – LETTERS TO JACOB – Part 4

Letters to Jacob
© Image created by Ross Cochrane

From Last letter,… 

Dear Jacob, 

… How incredible that God appeared to you personally! I have all sorts of questions however. How did God appear to you? In a dream? As a person? What other promises? This is so fascinating, but you left out all the details in your letter…. 

Ross 

____________________oOo______________________ 

Dear Ross 

I am still getting my head around all that God said to me. Sorry if I didn’t tell you the full story. Let me fill in some details. 

I didn’t tell you that God said to me, “I am El-Shaddai—‘God Almighty.’ Be fruitful and multiply. You will become a great nation, even many nations. Kings will be among your descendants! (Genesis 35:11 NLT).   

I can’t help but think that I am a blessed man beyond what deserve. Not only has God assured me through my new name that He fights for mebut through His Name, He reveals more of Himself to meEl-Shaddai is a name that speaks His great provision and sufficiency.  

Apparently, kings will come from my descendants. How amazing is that? The Lord is omnipotent. Nothing is impossible for Him. He can turn someone like me into someone who is great, simply because He is great.  

My prayer is that He blesses my children and their children with the kind of greatness that comes from acknowledging that He is God Almighty in their lives. 

But God didn’t stop there. He spoke about the promises He made to my ancestors. He said, “I will give you the land I once gave to Abraham and Isaac. Yes, I will give it to you and your descendants after you” (Genesis 35:12 NLT). 

I trust Him to fulfil in me all that I am created for and that many people in the future will be blessed and that my descendants will be blessed. 

And that’s the full story. After that God went up from the place where He had spoken to me (Genesis 35:13 NLT). 

Your utterly amazed friend, 

Jacob 

P.S. Loved the quote you gave from Ephesians? (Sounds like a good book). 

____________________oOo______________________ 

Dear Jacob, 

I am as utterly amazed as you are by your encounter with God. How incredible and awesome! 

2 Peter 1:4 (NLT2) says, “And because of His glory and excellence, He has given us great and precious promises. These are the promises that enable you to share His divine nature and escape the world’s corruption caused by human desires.”  

You may not fully understand what I am going to say to you next, Jacob, but God has spoken to other servants also through His Word about you.  

Not only will kings come from your descendants but also the Messiah, the King of kings and Lord of lords.  

1 Timothy 6:15 says, “For, at just the right time Christ will be revealed from heaven by the blessed and only almighty God, the King of all kings and Lord of all lords.”  

Thankyou for sharing your amazing story, but Jacob, you are the master of understatement! … 

I am still dumbfounded that you wrapped up your last letter with the words that God “went up” from the place He had spoken to you. What does that mean?  Jacob, where you speaking to God in the form of a person? Was this a bodily presence? A visible person? Face to face with God? Was this a vision? A dream? Did you see Jesus, Himself, a Theophany of the Christ? Or was it just an impression? Please be more specific!  

Ross 

____________________oOo______________________ 

Dear Ross, 

My apologies for not being specific. Let me tell you specifically. I saw God face to face, in bodily form. It was not a vision or a dream and He ascended into heaven after He spoke with me. This may well be a manifestation of the One you speak about in your letter as the King of kings and Lord of lords. 

The experience stirred my heart so much that I set up a stone pillar to mark the place where God had spoken to me. Then I poured wine over it as an offering to God and anointed the pillar with olive oil.  

This was the only way I knew to show my respect for the place where I had met with God, face to face.  This place will always be a very special place of worship to me. 

As you know I originally named the place Bethel (which means “house of God”), because God spoke to me there. (Genesis 35:14 NLT) 

Strange, when He met with me, I somehow felt that He was like the purest of lambs sacrificed for sin on the altar, and He was the drink offering I poured out before Him in worship. Bethel, the house of God cannot contain Him and although He went up from that place, He still remains with me. I am His house and I am overcome with worship within. I am filled with His presence even now. 

Tomorrow we are leaving Bethel and moving toward Ephrath (Genesis 35:16 NLT). From there we will travel to meet up with my Father. Where ever I tread, this land is my inheritance, promised from time immemorial to my ancestors, and now to me.  

Heir of promise, 

Jacob 

____________________oOo______________________ 

Pastor Ross

Advertisements

Genesis 27:1-27 – WHO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE?

WHO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE?

Celebrities trace their family history and tell such interesting stories about their ancestors in the classic series “WHO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE?” They find those who fought in major battles, accomplished heroic deeds, overcame insurmountable circumstances. Some lived infamous and tragic lives. All lived extraordinarily unique lives and their loves and hardships tell a moving story that inevitably brings tears to the eyes of their descendants who, in uncovering their past, layer by layer, are discovering more of who they are.

To trace Jesus family tree ancestry.com would take us back to Genesis 27 where Isaac wants to give his son ESAU the generational blessing handed down from father to son from the time of Abraham, even though God has promised that it will be his other son Jacob who leads the family (Genesis 25:23, Romans 9:10-13), not Esau.

Obviously not an identical twin, ESAU is the Bear Grylls of the Old Testament, only with body hair.Rugged, unkempt and lion-like, he is more Hagar the Horrible than Brad Pit, more caveman than business-man. He is a great hunter, sportsman, an outdoors man. And he has rejected God in his life.

Much less adventurous than his brother, JACOB stays around home. He’s the Master Chef of the family, especially good at making stew (Jacob has already used his cooking skills to entice his brother into giving up his Birthright – Genesis 25).

Rebekah, their mother, will go to any length to see Jacob, not Esau, receive the Father’s blessing for the firstborn. Whatever it takes! Even if it means deceiving her blind husband! Lying comes easy to this family.

Not really knowing who he is, and easily led by his Mum, Jacob seeks to accomplish God’s will by IMPERSONATING ESAU. With a family history riddled with such ruse, now it’s his turn to play a leading role. Records show that Sarah acted the role of Abraham’s sister (Genesis 20:2). Rebekah played the role of Isaac’s sister (Genesis 26:7). I’ve done it too. I admit it. (no, not played the role of my sister! What I mean is that I’ve tried to imitate others.) I’ve tried to look like, act like, preach like famous preachers in the hope I might receive their blessings, instead of simply being myself and allowing God to fulfil the promises for my life in His way. What about you? WHO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE?

With goat’s skin stretched onto his arms and neck and wearing Esau’s clothes, Jacob impersonates Esau. He lies to his blind Dad, saying “It’s Esau, your firstborn son. I’ve done as you told me. Here is the wild game. Now sit up and eat it so you can give me your blessing.Isaac asks, “How did you find it so quickly, my son?” “The Lord your God put it in my path!” Jacob replies. He blasphemes God by saying that GOD gave him success in finding the game so soon, but notice he says “The Lord YOUR God” helped me to hunt (Genesis 27:20), and not “the Lord MY God” because he knows that this is what Esau would say.Esau has no faith of his own.

God wants me to be myself, yet the Bible speaks of imitating Christ (1 Corinthians 11:1). Does it mean that I lose my personality in order to receive God’s blessing? Do I have to live a lie? Followers of Christ often say “More of Him, less of me” but does God want me to be LESS of who I really am? John the Baptist declares in John 3:30 (NLT) “He (Christ) must become greater and greater, and I must become less and less.” but what does he mean? Did God want him to be less of himself? In Mark 8:33-38 (NLT) Jesus says “If any of you wants to be My follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross, and follow Me. If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for My sake and for the sake of the Good News, you will save it. And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul?”

Only by knowing and loving Christ can I truly understand who I am. Jesus wants those who have a relationship with Him to live life to the full (John 10:10). John the Baptist was preparing the way for Christ to fulfil His destiny in dying for our sins, so that we could receive the gift of eternal life and live our lives under His blessing. We are to be filled with the Holy Spirit, so we can be all God intends us to be, not emptied of ourselves, but fully alive in Him. Not less of myself but certainly less selfish! Not sinless but sinning less. I don’t have to live a lie, but be honest to God.

The question is not so much “WHO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE?” based on your family tree, but “WHO HAS GOD CREATED YOU TO BE?” based on being in the family of God. As His children, we live the life He intended for us to live in all it’s fullness, …and pass on to our children the generational blessing found in knowing Christ.

Pastor Ross