Time's Up! Choose this day who you're going serve. Skirting the line is no longer the way. Why? Because Christ sacrificed more than we can imagine just to be able to commune with us. So it's time to decide whose side you're on.
If there was a church you want to belong to, its this one. They understand love, and they do best job of living out the plan of Christ. It isn't about how rich they are, or who's who. Its about Jesus!
First we talked about Ephesus the church that forgot their first love, which lead us right into the sanctuary of the church at Smyrna, who was consequently the suffering church. Pergamus, the Church that married the world was right behind them. It only got worse in Thyatira.
Today we find ourselves in a church that feels all too familiar, unfortunateky they call Sardis the Dead church, let's uncover why...
Imagine being in a city where you had to compromise the very crux of who you were just to make a living. You had to lay down your religion at every turn so much that it was just another thing that was no longer a staple in your every day life but yet you called yourself a Chrisitan. That's just a taste of what it meant to live in Thyatira.
Imagine this. Jacob does everything in his power to trick his father he was Esau, so that his father would bless him with the birth right and it actually works! He gets the blessing, he gets to carry on the lineage of Abraham! THE FATHER ABRAHAM!! But it doesn't come without a cost, only because he decides to be shady and shidty, he has to leave his mother and father's home because his brother Esau is out to get him, LITERALLY. He actually say that, "When I see him, I'm going to kill him." I paraphrase, but you get the point. So he goes into the wilderness has this dream about gates in ladders that kind of tells the whole future of mankin (but who knew that then?) to end up at Laban's house. When he gets to Laban's town he lays eyes on the most beautiful woman he has ever seen and decides that'g going to be his wife, only to find out that her dad, (his uncle) is an even bigger trickster than he is.... Buckle up this is Bible School!!
After Jacob has convinced Esau to sell his birth right in a moment of weakness, the trickery continues. We learn a plethora of things here in this passage:
1. Esau was guilty of bartering divine privilege for carnal gratification.
2. Don’t think you have to help God. If Rebekah would have not devised the plan God would have worked it out his way.
3. Don’t be blind by you own affections to what God wants to do. Isaac was stuck on Esau, God was stuck on Jacob. Isaac wasn’t sensitive to the prophecies of God.
4. Did Jacob earn the blessing? Nope. Something worthy of being grateful for, in our own weaknesses.
5. Jacob found the acceptance of his father by hiding behind the name of the first born beloved son. He was clothed in his clothes (type of Christ: we’re clothed in his righteousness).
Here we see the beeginning of fued that lasted for ages. We learn several valuable lessons from this off the wall encounter from this set of twins:
1. People will use your weaknesses to get what they want even when they are closest to you
2. When God has prophesied a thing it doesn't matter what circumstances there are, he is going to make room for what he has promised.
3. God doesn't need your help. Even when you try to tip the scales, he is still going to do what he wants
Today we chronicle through Genesis 23 to see Abraham preparing to bury his wife Sarah. We see how he appraches the elders of the city, and how God has made room for him to thrive and obtain everything that he needs in a foreign land. There are some practical ways that Abraham approaches his business dealings that as Christians we often avoid, which can leave us holding the bag in situations we were meant to thrive in.
Much like Job "Though he slay me yet will I trust him." God placed Abraham in a situation that most of us would fail, almost instantly. "Kill my kid?..." "How could God ask me to kill my kid?" But Abraham trust God enough to go up that mountain trusting that.
As we continue our chronicle through the Bible we have landed in the ever so controversial story of Sodom and Gomorrah. Let's compare and contrast the likeness of this evil society with the one that we so conveiniently call home. The comparisions are scary.
The Father of the faithful, a man listed in the Hall of Faith, Abraham is truly a man that goes down in the bible's Who's who. To understadn where he came from will set the ground work for your understanding of much of what will transpire in the 65 books that follow Genesis.
Christ instructed John to write 7 letters to 7 churches. All of the churches have a specific message. Which church do you belong to?
Soooo, if we all came from Noah....where did all theses countries and different racial backgrounds come from? How did we get so far separated? How did some groups become notoriously good and others bad?
So the whole Earth flooded?! How?! What?! Why? Who lived to talk bout it? We'll explore it all in an in-depth look at the flood, and the covenant God made with man afterward.
We met, Adam, Eve, Cain, Abel. We talk about the line of Seth all the way through Enoch, Methuselah and here we are at Noah. The man who found grace in the eyes of God. The man who found righteousness, but being a mess, but his heart was turned toward God.
We all ask the question, "Where does hate come from?" Guess what... We find our answer right here in the foundation of the World. Hate has long had it's root in the fall of man, but it crept in with Cain and Able, ever since we haven't been able to shake it's ugly disposition.
So I'm sure we've all be confused about how exactly the fall of man really worked. Sure we have the basics like they ate from the tree, and God Got angry, and that's why we have to struggle for almost everything. Do we really know what happened in the Garden, and why this is the foundation for the need for a gospel? No? That's cool, so let's dig just a little deeper into the real reasons chapter three sets the stage for the rest of the Gospel.
He gave us dominion? So what does that really mean. Am I some kind of King, or is it just a figure of speech. Did I forfeit my power? Who am I really? Where does that point me to?