BSF Genesis: Week 22, Day 2

Today’s Scriptures

Questions:

3.
Isaac wished to bless him as his primary heir.  God knew that was not his destiny and saw his heart as being godless.

4.
a.
Jacob took advantage of Esaus’ hunger in trading for his birthright.  Isaac sought to give his blessing to Esau in secret.  Rebekah conspired with Jacob to deceive his father into giving him the blessing.

b.
Talk together.  Pray together.  Worship together.  Be honest examples of Christ to one another.

5.
a.
Rebekah sought to ensure the fulfillment of the prophecy that God had given her in regard to Jacob and Esau.  Isaac sought to reward his first born son whom he loved.

b.
It is not proper to use deception, even if it yields the correct results.  The end does not justify the means.

c.
End justifying means is a very common approach today.  Doing things for the “good of others” seems to trump doing God’s work. We guilt people into giving or attending church or bible study, tying them down instead of building them up.

My Daily Journal:

Thinking of our “Christian Family” brought a new train of thought to the stories of Isaac, Rebekah and their children.  It is convicting how much we still use similar tactics in our churches.  While church leaders (pastors, elders, councils, etc.) may not show favoritism to those with hairy arms, favoritism is still an ongoing temptation.  Instead of the ones who can provide wild game meat, it may be those who provide the big checks or who have always served in a certain way or the family that makes that really yummy jello with fruit floating in it (can you tell I grew up on Lutheran pot-lucks?).

Also, if we don’t outright deceive each other, what other ways do we try to manipulate others in the church, our christian family?  Guilt and gossip are more powerful and harmful tools exercised for “good reasons” in our churches.

It is difficult but important for us to remind ourselves and each other that we don’t need to do any of these things.  God did not put his church into our hands so we could  improve the income statement at the expense of relationships.  Instead we are to focus only on the relationships and trust Him.  Zig Ziglar wrote there are 5 reasons people don’t buy from you: no need, no money, no hurry, no desire, and no trust. I am not suggesting we are called to sell church or bible study to others.  But when it comes to missions work and bringing others to a deeper faith, there is really only one of these 5 things that you and I can control: trust.  When the Spirit of God has created the desire, the need, the urgency and timing and aligned the resources of heaven and earth to bring someone to consider accepting Christ as their savior, I know I don’t want to be the barrier because they don’t trust me.

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