GENESIS 25-32 & MATTHEW 16-20
Issac prayed for his wife! Such a beautiful picture of a man that truly loved his wife. He sought the Lord on behalf of his wife in her most vulnerable place because He LOVED HER. I guarantee you that this man prayed for his wife the entire TWENTY YEARS that she was barren. That is persistent prayer. That is prayer that digs in, hangs on, and chooses to believe year after year after year until God answers. That beloved is the spiritual inheritance of his Father Abe! LOVE IT! With all the crappy, messed up, bad choices we do make as parents, our children get the good a hundred fold. Issac was a man who learned what it meant to pray faithfully to a God who WOULD PROVIDE. He learned first hand laying bound up there on that mountain that God would engage with our hearts and bring about a great victory.
A vibrant womb emerges from the persistent prayers and from the very beginning God declares to Issac and Rebekah, Hey you two are about to have your HANDS FULL. The two babies inside your womb are coming out swingin and them boys gonna be fightin. Any one of us who have more than one kid understand those words. It could be just me but sometimes I’m like, God do my girls even like each other? Well, for sure these two, Jacob and Esau, from birth were SCRAPPIN. I do think it is interesting that Jacobs name actually means heel. Why? Because of the prophesy all the way back in Genesis to the enemy, You shall bruise him on the heel. The heel is another name for the nation of Israel because Jacob is renamed Israel. We KNOW how bruised the nation of Israel has been and continues to be. We only need to look at the holocaust for that prophecy to be true. Anyway, that’s just my nerdy brain. Eventually the head of the Enemy will be crushed with the Messiah of Israel Jesus. YESSSSSSSSSS!
Right off the bat scripture paints these two boys as different as can be. Esau a skillful hunter, brawny, manly, rough and tough and Jacob a peaceful man sitting in the tents of his Fathers. Understand sitting in the tents meant he was interested in the spiritual side of the family legacy. So you have Esau known for the MATERIALISTIC THINGS and Jacob the SPIRITUAL. Two different directions in life, one consumed with outwardly pursuits and accomplishments and the other consumed with inward accomplishments. This is one reason Jacob desired the birthright so bad and Esau was so quick to give it up. Jacob understood the importance of the spiritual legacy and Esau could have cared less, that is until he FINALLY understood what he gave up. You see Hebrews actually tells us that Esau was an immoral man and godless. That is what tends to happen when our focus is on earthly pursuits and accolades and NOT seeking FIRST the Kingdom of God. Jacob understood that whoever received the birthright actually received covenant promises and blessing and Jacob wanted it regardless of what it took. Esau was so consumed with temporal satisfaction that he was ready and willing to throw away the covenantal inheritance for immediate gratification. Don’t be so quick to pounce on good old Esau though because we ourselves at times are so willing to give up our covenantal promises for instant gratification. Like Esau we too realize TOO LATE that what we thought we wanted pales in comparison to what God actually has for us. It's in times like those that I am so thankful that God is merciful and quickly realigns my heart. Think about it, what is your BOWL OF LENTILS. What is it that causes you too quickly sacrifice the promises of God for temporary satisfaction. Be careful because you don’t really know what your relinquishing until it’s too late. Be careful that you don’t place so much value on worldly things that you forget to prioritize spiritual things. It was only from a place of despair that Esau FINALLY realized that he missed the MOST IMPORTANT THING!
I think the fact that Jacob actually got the birthright by tricking Esau and their father is eye opening. We all can have a heart that desires the spiritual but act out of our flesh often. It’s a beautiful picture to see how God deals with Jacob. Don’t think for a minute that God overlooked the deceit and lying. NOPE! Jacob received the blessing but spent the next TWENTY years running for his life in fear away from his family and the promise land. Before he returned to the promise land, to reconciliation he wrestled with God and his name was changed. HIS IDENTITY WAS CHANGED. Transformation took place. While Jacob the great deceiver was exiled from the very land he desired, he himself was deceived over and over again. That which we open the door to in our life will place us in bondage until we conquer it. Great story of a boy who loved God, carried a great weakness, and who God loved and would stop at nothing to deliver him from that weakness. The story of Jacob is a great reminder that God will place us in numerous situations to FREE US from that which contaminates us to bless us for His purposes. Notice that although Jacob was exiled and constantly being taking advantage of, he left that place of testing a rich man. God always blesses us when we stay in the fight and allow Him the room to sift, expose and reshape our lives into that which He has planned. Jacob left RUNNING and returned REIGNING because he surrendered to God and became a new man.
One thing I want to point out about Issac. When He was reopening the wells of his Father Abe, the Philistines were jealous. Whenever we find ourselves enjoying the promises of the Lord our lives invite JEALOUSY. Don’t be surprised when you encounter all kinds of attitudes running hard, digging deep, and seeking FIRST the Kingdom of God. This type of soul prosperity incites jealousy and envy in the hearts of the captive. Issac was opening springs of living water in the middle of a dry arid desert and the THIRSTY CAME RUNNING shouting the entire way. In the same way, when your heart is set on finding living water the thirsty around you will come shouting. Take a cue from Issac, don’t get mad, don’t get offended, give what you have away and keep on digging. Be a source of peace NOT division. Be a spring that brings refreshing not a CONTAMINATED spring that leaves a foul taste. Life is full of moments when the thirsty will push us and our flesh will want to push back and demand our rights. Issac shows us that there is no need for us to demand a thing we need only to put our trust in God and he will always reward the peacemaker. Later on the very ones who were taking the wells from Issac came back and honored him. In essence Issac blessed and remained peaceful, God did all the fighting and honored the faithfulness of Issac by reaffirming to him is Identity. The Lord actually brought Issacs enemies to his feet and caused their mouths to honor him. The greatest part of this was that his enemies actually said that the way he chose to respond, his actions, changed their hearts. Remember that everything in the word of God has purpose and everything we do in response to the word has purpose. Let's choose to be a WATERFALL OF BLESSING, GRACE, AND HONOR not a stagnate pool!
In Matthew, there is this crazy moment when Jesus takes three of his disciples up a mountain and then is completely TRANSFORMED in front of their eyes and at one point they fall down in complete fear. I want to see this moment in slow motion when I walk those streets of gold. In a moment everything that was on the inside of Jesus BURST FORTH to the outside and lit up the entire area. The reality of the inside overtook the physicality of the outside and illuminated the darkness. A transformation took place and then God spoke affirmation. Heres the truth beloved the SAME DANG THING happens to us. We have this amazing ability to allow the reality of the KINGDOM that resides inside of us the RIGHT to overtake our outside and light up the darkness. When we are not conformed to the likeness of this world and are renewed by the realities of heaven, we are TRANSFORMED into light bearers that carry the very spirit of the living God. When we are transformed, God himself affirms us, and says GO BE A CITY ON A HILL DO NOT HIDE YOUR LIGHT. I love Jesus because he always displays first that which he ask us to do. Just like Jesus, be willing to be turned inside out. May the LIGHT that you display produce a HOLY FEAR to those around you as you SHINE the glory of Gods goodness. I heard a quote one time, the smallest light can light up the darkest room…BE THE SPARK that ignites the flame in the lives of those around you.