DOCTOR CHRISTIAN’S BLOG
BOOK OF GENESIS
WHY DIDN’T GOD TELL US THE LIFE-STORIES OF HIS PATRIARCHS IS A PRECURSOR TO JESUS’ PLAN OF SALVATION FOR MANKIND?
Do you find yourself wanting to question God about his blessings and curses for his Patriarchs for the nation of Israel? I write this because, to me, it often seems the one who least deserved to be blessed is blessed, and the one who should have been blessed isn’t. Let’s review.
Cain and Abel bring a sacrifice to the Lord. Cain’s is rejected; Abel’s offering is accepted. We are only told that God will accept Cain’s if he does right. We don’t know what he did wrong. Able is blessed; Cain is marked for his murder of his brother, and lives as a ‘man without a country’.
Isaac is innocent; God tells his father to use him as a sacrificial offer on an altar. God stays Abraham’s hand with a knife in it and provides an ‘escape goat’ for a sacrifice.
With the cunning help of his mother, Jacob, a ‘momma’s boy and a brat’, steals his brother, Esau’s birthright blessing. Jacob, the great sinner, is blessed; Esau, his father’s ‘favorite son’ receives a curse.
Joseph, Jacob’s favorite son, another egotistical brat, ends up second to the Pharaoh of Egypt. His brother’s, hard working men, sin and end up as subjects to their brother.
There are other examples, but these will suffice.
How much more thrilling would the stories be and our joy would be if we had been told, from the get-go the stories of the Patriarchs have been lived so all of mankind will know that God’s entire plan of salvation is one of redemption for those who don’[t deserve it. God could have said, “Children, listen up. The stories of my people have been left for posterity so that each one may recognize how merciful I am. I wanted to force my people to know that FAIRNESS isn’t a goal; RIGHTEOUSNESS, my righteousness is all that matters. Sin has forced separation from you and me, and death is required for this infidelity on your part. Because I am a gracious and forgiving God, I do those things that seldom make sense to a mere man: forgive those who sin against me even though they deserve punishment, even to death.”
But…how can anyone say one deserved a blessing while another deserved a curse? In some cases, I think you can; in others, it is very difficult to know this.
My speculation! God rejected Cain’s offering because in some way his attitude wasn’t proper before the Lord. Isn’t it just the way sometimes? We do our best to try and please God and in the end it seems what we have brought to him he considers unacceptable. Too often, we are left to fend for ourselves and discern why. I think it is that God knows our ‘attitude’ concerning all we do in our relationship with him. Cain burned with anger and jealousy and he murdered his brother to show God how little God meant to him. In fact, the murder of his brother demonstrated how much God really did count in his life. Is this the first account of the ‘Bad-boy syndrome’ in the bible? I think it is. Perhaps, Cain reasoned. If he can’t love me when I did all I knew how to do, he may change his mind, take pity on me, and truly love me in the midst of my great sin?
The questions we must ask ourselves: is my attitude proper in the presence of the Lord? Is my love and commitment based upon what I get out of the relationship with Jesus? How much better would it be if I concentrated on giving rather than getting?
Isaac was innocent. If you were he, what would you have taken away from that life’s experience? Perhaps, it’s alright to be scared out of your wits when you feel abandoned by God; but you can trust God to deliver you from harm? Wow! My dad loves God more than me. I pray I’ll never find myself in his predicament; I pray I’ll be a Godly man like him. May they write an epitaph on my grave: “A chip off the old-block”.
Jacob’s mother, Rebekah, and him plotted to disinherit her oldest, twin son, Esau, so her youngest, favorite ‘momma’s-boy son could get the Patriarch, Isaac’s family blessing. This great sin was premeditated. How could a just God allow this? If one digs deep, he will again find the biblical answer a kin to Cain and Able. Esau’s improper attitude about the blessings God had already bestowed upon his family. He abruptly sold his ‘birthright’ to his brother for a bowl of soup when he was hungry. He acted like he was dying from a lack of food. We all know a man can’t die from starvation for many weeks. Esau held his lineage in contempt after God had sacrifice so much for him to possess it: his ancestors wandered in the desert for forty years.
Yet, God blessed a sneak, a liar, and a dishonest man who betrayed his older twin…and cursed his brother…via the lips of his own father who loved him more than his younger brother, Jacob. What is the lesson for us to learn?
Perhaps, one is that parental love seldom is protected from favoritism between siblings. As much as a parent may protest, and siblings argue about, parents do often show favoritism. This time, it brought about horrifying consequences. It might be that God again wanted to teach a lesson about redeemable things and how it is done when God does the redeeming: none deserve it; he does it anyway.
Joseph, Jacob’s young son, had an ‘image’ problem. He also was shown parental favoritism: he was given a beautiful ‘coat of many colors’ that increased the level of jealousy amongst his brothers and their father. Though he was much younger, he found it great sport to laude his God-given dreams about how they would one day serve him and be submissive to him. His father brought more grief between Joseph and his brothers as he used him to ‘spy’ upon them as they tended sheep.
Did God punish Joseph for his improper attitude about showing respect to elders by allowing him to be enslaved and to spend time in prison? Did the idea of meting out punishment enter into the grand scheme of God’s plans for him? Scripture doesn’t say; we are only left to conjecture outcomes.
What I am confident about is that God allowed Satan to mess with Joseph’s life…and to severely test his faith. God also richly rewarded Joseph’s faith. Isn’t this the succinct outcome God wants his believers to expect?
Today, a reader of this blog may well be sitting in a spiritual hole so deep daylight, even if pumped in, can’t seem to possibly shine upon his mess. It may be one has an addiction: alcohol, drugs, porn, sex, adulterous affairs, dishonesty, false accusations, protective pride misplaced, mean-spirited divorce, a moral compass that doesn’t work, a need for revenge, an unwillingness to forgive…or to accept being forgiven, because, in my opinion, they don’t really believe that God has a plan for their life, as he did with the Patriarchs. These incredible biblical examples of how God intervened with his people are just as active today as they were thousands of years ago. How can I make such an assertion? I declare this because God’s desire for fellowship with the ‘crown of his creation’ has never waned or faltered. His son’s blood sealed the deal!
Until next time…Pilgrim, take the challenge; add your two-cents; pontificate; and count your blessings.