Saturday, March 11, 2023

God's Promises To Abraham - chapter 6

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0:04 - A Coming Last Crusade!
13:45 - Isaac Blessing Jacob

Chapter 6

A Coming Last Crusade!

I think this is a very exciting booklet that we’re doing. I hope you pay attention – I hope you listen. And, I hope you get out your Bible and follow along as I quote different Scriptures. I want you to know that we’re not just making this up! We’re following the Word of God. Everything we do here – at the Owensboro Church of Jesus Christ – is based upon the Word of God, the Truth of God, and the Plan of God. Knowing the Plan of God and expanding our knowledge of the Plan of God – that’s what we are here to talk about. And we’re really not interested in building this huge organization, because as I’ve said before, the religion which is presented in the Bible – the true religion of God, not the religion of the world, of man’s customs and traditions – is very little heard of. I mean, people just really don’t know what the Bible truly says. They go to their Sunday school classes or their Sunday church, and they may hear a verse or two a week, and that’s about all they get. And they just end up – most people – when they go to their churches, are following human customs and human traditions. They’re not following the precepts as put forth in the Word of God! Well, here, we’re all about knowing the Word of God – the T R U T H of God, and the Plan of God!
     I’ve been saying this for several years – as we hear about various attacks – that around the family dinner tables, behind closed doors, around the office water cooler – the people of Europe are probably beginning to say to one another, “We have a problem!” “We tried to extend mercy and graciousness to these foreigners and yet the only thing they seem to want to do is to kill us!” And sooner or later the ire of the European people will turn very heated, very hot, very angry – against these foreigners! And when that happens – hold on, fasten your seat belt, tighten it down as good as you can get it – because this world is going to quickly spin out of control! And, I have said for years – and I’m going to say it again for all of you – Islamic terrorism is going to plunge the world into WORLD WAR III! I say that with absolute confidence because that’s what the Bible says! And that’s what this booklet is about. European people in prophecy, the British and American people in prophecy – they go down different roads, but the other part of it is the Islamic people.
     The Book of Daniel talks about the “king of the North,” being EUROPE, and the “king of the South,” the Islamic Middle East, including North Africa. And there will be a World War III – and it will plunge the world into a day that the Bible calls ‘great tribulation.’ GREAT TROUBLES! The worst period of time in the history of mankind!
     Matthew 24 – the “Olivet Prophecy.” One of the last messages He gave in His human life – verse 15 He talks about the ‘abomination of desolation,’ or the ‘abomination that makes desolate,’ spoken of in the Book of Daniel – several times. And, Jesus said, “’ Therefore when you see the ‘abomination of desolation,’ spoken of by Daniel the prophet, STANDING IN THE HOLY PLACE … ’” – talking about the temple – Jerusalem. And this will come about when European forces invade the Middle East to put down Islamic resistance – to crush it militarily. Now, they’re not there – yet. The leaders are not yet even in that mindset. But the leaders who are now leading Europe – such as Donald Tusk, Jean-Claude Juncker, David Sassoli, Angela Merkel – will eventually be voted out of office and they will be replaced by people who say, “NO MORE!” And when you get the German people riled up, they become extremely dedicated to finishing their task! And all I have to say is – look at the history of Europe in the 20th century! If you want proof of that! Well, at the moment – she is kind of a sleeping giant. She is being coddled with political correctness and far-left thinking. But when your friends and your neighbors start getting slaughtered in their grocery store, in their favorite movie theater, in their restaurants, in their church, it doesn’t take long before anger quickly overcomes this sort of kumbaya attitude – let’s all hold hands and sing peace and love. All of that quickly goes out the window! And all of a sudden it becomes survival of the fittest. And Europe – a future United States of Europe (whatever they will call themselves – the Federation of Europe) – without the United Kingdom, will go on a rampage, and it will actually lead to the Last Crusade. European forces will invade the Middle East with the intention of annihilating Islamic radicalism! And they will do a good job of it – if you want to know the truth!
     Verse 21 – “ ’For then …’” – when you see this great military force enter Jerusalem from the North – Europe – and take over the temple, and a holy man claims that he is now God – and that is the ‘abomination that makes desolate’ – Jesus says, “…’ there will be great tribulation, …’” – many, many horrible globe-girdling problems! “…’such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be.’” Now, this is the words of Jesus Christ – you don’t have to believe me, but if you have any sense in your head, you should respect what Jesus Christ has to say! Because He’s the Judge – the ultimate Judge of all humankind. He’s the member of the Family of GOD who knows exactly what’s going to happen. This means the end-time trauma will become so great – more catastrophic, more destructive, more upheaval, than even World War I or II! And think about the millions of people which were killed on the continent of Europe during World War II! And everything was destroyed! Cities, towns, and factories – everything! And what is soon to happen in the near future will make that look minor. So says Jesus Christ!
     Verse 22 – “ ’And unless those days were shortened, …’” – except this end-time trauma be shortened, “…‘no flesh would be saved; …’” – and as some translations say, ‘saved alive, but for the elect’s sake …’” – a certain group of people who are very near and dear the hearts of God the Father and Jesus Christ – referring to the physical people of the House of Israel. Once named Jacob. There was Abraham, Isaac, Jacob (who had twelve sons; he eventually had his name changed to Israel), and those twelve sons became the progenitors of different tribes of people. And those people live in many of the so-called Western world. And many of those descendants came here to America. Some of them were the establishing people of the British Isles. Some of those people ended up in Australia, New Zealand, Canada, South Africa. And those physical people God has always loved – always wanted to help – but they haven’t been very good about returning that favor. Often rebellious, bull-headed, just refusing to do what God wants them to do. Well, they will suffer. But they’re not going to die out, because ‘for the elect’s sake’ Jesus Christ is indeed going to come back to this earth and put a stop to what would be, probably, massive thermal nuclear warfare! “…’ those days will be shortened.’” Now that’s the truth we are attempting to tell you. And we’re attempting to use the prophecies of the Bible to show you what is said, why it is said, and where it is going.
     And that atrocity, which occurred to this eighty-five-year-old priest – doing nothing but attempting to practice his religion in a completely peaceful manner, he’s not threatening anybody – those few in there with him had to witness this man’s throat slit! The world has changed – folks! It’s not 1950 anymore! President Dwight D. Eisenhower is not the president anymore! It’s not the days of John F. Kennedy – which I remember very easily! They called that time the “Camelot Era.” The world appeared so fresh and new – everything was going to be wonderful! As if a utopian society was going to come down on us. It’s not even like the days of Ronald Reagan. When he built up American forces and no one else was able to keep up with us – and the USSR came crashing down and imploded! And there was for a few years a sense of peace and calm and stability in the world. Those days are long gone! Now we live in a world where the Islamic radical jihadists are wanting to destroy everything of the West. And if they could – if they could - they’d walk into our homes right now and slaughter us! Except I have a feeling Jesus Christ would stop them – His angels. If they could, they would destroy – you! Wherever you live. Your family members, your relatives, your co-workers, your sons and daughters, your mothers and fathers. They are utterly ruthless and without conscience. And this has erupted onto the world scene! And, we’ve heard reports that the soldiers of ISIS “according to the Combined Joint Task Force–OIR (CJTF-OIR), ISIS carried out assassinations, suicide attacks, abductions, and arson of crops in both Iraq and Syria.” And, in 2016, the FBI Director James Comey talked about a future – near future – diaspora. A dispersing of those Islamic fighters back into the West – into Europe, the United Kingdom, and into America! And their one goal will be to kill as many people as they can! The world is teetering on the edge of insanity! And I don’t know about you – but every day I open my newspaper or turn on the television and I actually brace myself, and I think – what am I going to hear about today!? What happened when the television was off!? It’s every day – somewhere around the world ISIS and its affiliates are claiming responsibility for the death of scores of people - who were doing nothing wrong – except living a normal life in their country! Going to a fireworks display. Going to a movie theatre. Going to a restaurant. Riding on a train. Going to church. Going to a nightclub. Eating at McDonald's. Again, the world is truly teetering on the edge!
     And sure enough – the last presidential primaries were full of accusations and name-calling. ALL THE WHILE THE WORLD IS BURNING! - as Emperor Nero, they say, fiddled as Rome burned! And what are we focused on here in America!? This world is spinning out of control!

Isaac Blessing Jacob

Let’s go back to Genesis 27 and continue the unfolding of this story.
     “Now it came to pass, when Isaac was old …” – now, we’ve had Abraham – and God dealt directly with Abraham – and God made a whole series of promises to Abraham. And then, one of the promises was, ‘you’ll have a son.’ And that son who became the future bearer of these promises – was Isaac. “… and his eyes were so dim that he could not see, …” – now, was Isaac special to God!? Yes indeed. Isaac was a miracle baby. Isaac was a young boy when Abraham was going to slit his throat and place him on an altar as a sacrifice. Because God told Abraham to. And at the last minute, God intervened and said, “No! Don’t harm the lad!” And provided a ram caught in a thicket to become the sacrifice. So that was the second major miracle in the life of Isaac. Life-changing – life-altering. God loved Isaac. And, we’re told in the Book of Hebrews that Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, will be in the kingdom of God! But what I’m getting to – even Isaac as an older man had physical problems.
     And here Isaac – a servant of God. A perfect man? No. Did he have flaws and foibles!? Sure, just like everybody. If you’re flesh and blood, you’ve got some cracks in the armor – because you’re flesh and blood. We don’t become perfect until we become eternal in the Family of GOD. But here, Isaac, he’s growing old. He’s grown so old that he can’t see anymore – he’s gone blind. I’m sure Isaac wished he weren’t, but, God doesn’t stop the aging process for the people that He loves. He allows them to continue the natural human process and eventually – like an alarm clock that you have to wind up, eventually, it winds down and there’s no more energy stored within the clock and it stops ticking. Just like all of us – if time goes on long enough. But you don’t have to worry, because when Jesus Christ returns we who have God’s Spirit will be in the Kingdom of God. So our sleep will only be temporary – and then we’ll be in the Family of GOD!
     Here, Isaac was growing old. “… that he called Esau …” – remember we talked about Esau in the third chapter? - also called Edom – the progenitor of the Turkish people. “…his older son and said to him, ‘My son.’ And he answered him, Here I am.’ 2) Then he said, ‘Behold now, I am old. I do not know the day of my death.’” – he didn’t know the day, but he knew it was near. Verse 3 – “’ Now, therefore, please take your weapons, your quiver and your bow, and go out to the field and hunt game for me. 4) And make me savory food, such as I love, and bring it to me that I may eat, that my soul [my life] may bless you before I die.’” – However, Rebekah – Isaac’s wife – knew that she did not want Esau to receive the blessing. She wanted the blessing to go to Jacob. Verse 5 – “Now Rebekah was listening when Isaac spoke to Esau his son. And Esau went to the field to hunt game and to bring it. 6) So Rebekah spoke to Jacob her son, saying, ‘Indeed I heard your father speak to Esau your brother, saying, 7) ‘Bring me game and make savory food for me, that I may eat it and bless you in the presence of the LORD before my death.’ 8) Now therefore, my son, obey my voice according to what I command you. 9) Go now to the flock and bring me from there two choice kids of the goats, and I will make savory food from them for your father, such as he loves. 10) Then you shall take it to your father, that he may eat it, and that he may bless you before his death.’ 11) And Jacob said to Rebekah his mother, ‘Look, Esau my brother is a hairy man, and I am a smooth-skinned man. 12) Perhaps my father will feel me, and I shall seem to be a deceiver to him; and I shall bring a curse on myself and not a blessing.’ 13) But his mother said to him, ‘Let your curse be on me, my son; only obey my voice, and go, get them for me.’ 14) And he went and got them and brought them to his mother, and his mother made savory food, such as his father loved. 15) Then Rebekah took the choice clothes of her elder son Esau, which were with her in the house, and put them on Jacob her younger son.” – so, she got some of his clothing, probably had the smell of hunting, and Esau’s scent. Verse 16 – “And she put the skins of the kids of the goats on his hands and on the smooth part of his neck.”
     Most of us would say, “Well you know, if I reached out and felt that, I’d know something was wrong.” Keep in mind, Isaac is an older man. His eyes have dimmed, and probably a lot of other acuteness of his faculties have begun to wane. The final week of my fathers' life, I could have placed a goatskin in his lap and he would have thought it was his kitty cat. Because after a while you just lose your ability to see things the way you used to.
     Verse 17 – “Then she gave the savory food and the bread, which she had prepared, into the hand of her son Jacob. 18) So he went to his father and said, ‘My father.’ And he said, ‘Here I am. Who are you, my son?’ 19) Jacob said to his father, ‘I am Esau your firstborn; …’” – now, is Jacob a perfectly honest man here!? No. We’ve talked about how Abraham had some chinks in his armor. Abraham had some flaws. And we talked about how Isaac had some of the same flaws that his father had. And now we’re talking about Jacob. And Jacob has some issues in his life. We’re going to find out later that Joseph – when he was a young man – was a little arrogant, a little cocky we might say – and helped bring some of his problems upon himself. The people of God are not perfect is what I’m trying to say. The people of God are humans - with human emotions, human frailties, human reasoning, and human thinking. And many times they make mistakes. Which is why Jesus Christ and the New Covenant are so wonderful – because we can go there before the throne of mercy and grace and have our mistakes forgiven. And here – you know, think about it - Jacob is actively deceiving his father because he’s greedy. And he’s extremely disrespectful to his brother. Jacob is pulling some pretty bad stunts here. And he’s being encouraged by his mother – so she’s right there in the thicket with him! They have some flaws. “… I have done just as you told me; please arise, sit and eat of my game [venison], that your soul may bless me.’ 20) But Isaac said to his son, ‘How is it that you have found it so quickly, my son?’ And he said, ‘Because the LORD your God brought it to me.’” – well, that’s another lie! God didn’t have anything directly to do with this. This was his mother and himself. Verse 21 – “Isaac said to Jacob, ‘Please come near, that I may feel you, my son, whether you are really my son Esau or not.’” – remember, Isaac had a great affection for Esau. And Rebekah had a great affection for Jacob. Well, right there – I’m sure if you went to the library or a book store and bought a book on parenting, I’m sure the good doctor – whoever it is that wrote the book – would say, “Don’t do this!” Don’t favor the one son over the other. And would probably say, “Hey, mom and dad get together and treat your children as equal as you can.” But they were human. They had flaws – even though God loves them. And, God was blessing them, and God made promises to them – and God fulfilled His promises! And is still fulfilling those promises! However, the people of God – the people of Jesus Christ – are not perfect, and will not be until the blowing of the seventh trump! From flesh into spirit being – then they will become perfect. Verse 22 – “So Jacob went near to Isaac his father, and he felt him and said, ‘The voice is Jacob’s voice, but the hands are the hands of Esau.’” – so again, remember, Isaac is an older man – his health is failing. Verse 23 – “And he did not recognize him, because his hands were hairy like his brother Esau’s hands; so he blessed him. 24) Then he said, ‘Are you really my son Esau?’ He said, ‘I am.’” – another lie. Verse 25 – “He said, ‘Bring it near to me, and I will eat of my son’s game, so that my soul may bless you.’” – and you get the feeling that in this line of people – Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Ephraim, and Manasseh – that God respected the parent so much that when the parent put a blessing upon his son, God honored the request. Now Isaac couldn’t bless anybody of and by himself, but God had given him the authority – just as He had given Abraham – to pass these blessings on to the next generation. “… So he brought it near to him, and he ate; and he brought him wine, and he drank.” – now again, the wine is going to make him a little fuzzier in the head. So, he’s got his doubts. You know, he thought he heard Jacob’s voice, but maybe his hearing isn’t as good. His eyes – he can’t see. His mind isn’t working as well as it used to. Verse 26 – “Then his father Isaac said to him, ‘Come near now and kiss me, my son.’ 27) And he came near and kissed him; and he smelled the smell of his clothing, …” – and he probably thought – well, yeah, that’s Esau. It’s got that hunters smell. Maybe also smelled like wood smoke? “… and blessed him and said: ‘Surely, the smell of my son Is like the smell of a field Which the LORD has blessed.’”
     Now, verse 28 – notice this great blessing. “’ Therefore may God give you Of the dew of heaven, Of the fatness of the earth, And plenty of grain and wine. 29) Let peoples serve you, And nations bow down to you. Be master over your brethren, And let your mother’s sons bow down to you. Cursed be everyone who curses you, And blessed be those who bless you!’”
     Remember – just really quick – Genesis 12. One of the first promises God made to Abraham. And I think this blessing – this pronouncement – follows all the people of God. Because Abraham was the father of the faithful, and if we are practitioners of the New Covenant, we also have that same relationship with God that Abraham had. Verse 3 – “’ I will bless those who bless you, And I will curse him who curses you; …’” – it’s the same thing he says here. Isaac passes the blessing on. “’ Cursed be everyone who curses you, And blessed be those who bless you!’” And I have to tell you, folks – in my fairly short lifetime, I have seen a number of people go out of their way to give me a hard time. And there was no reason for them – other than they hated, at some level, and did not like the Spirit of God that resided in me. And most of the time those people – at some point or another – have been cursed. I mean some horrible things! Some tragic things! Including death. And the people who have blessed me – who have treated me with kindness – I have seen in their lives for them to be blessed. I think this pronouncement that God first gave Abraham, and now we hear it in the words of Isaac, is real and true - and does exist in this world. “’ I will bless those who bless you, And I will curse him who curses you; …’”
     Verse 30 – “Now it happened, as soon as Isaac had finished blessing Jacob, and Jacob had scarcely gone out from the presence of Isaac his father, that Esau his brother came in from his hunting. 31) He also had made savory food, and brought it to his father, and said to his father, ‘Let my father arise and eat of his son’s game, that your soul may bless me.’” – so Isaac’s got to be a little confused at this point. Verse 32 – “And his father Isaac said to him, ‘Who are you?’ So he said, ‘I am your son, your firstborn, Esau.’ 33) Then Isaac trembled exceedingly, and said, ‘Who? Where is the one who hunted game and brought it to me? I ate all of it before you came, and I have blessed him – and indeed he shall be blessed.’” – so the blessing was like written in stone. Because it had its origin in God’s promises. But all of a sudden Isaac was beginning to figure out – somebody tricked me. And Esau is beginning to find out - somebody has cheated me. Verse 34 – “When Esau heard the words of his father, he cried with an exceedingly great and bitter cry, and said to his father, ‘Bless me – me also, O my father!’ 35) But he said, ‘Your brother came with deceit and has taken away your blessing.’ 36) And Esau said, ‘Is he not rightly named Jacob? For he has supplanted me these two times. He took away my birthright, and now look, he has taken away my blessing!’” – now the story about the birthright we covered in the third chapter – back in Genesis 25. “… And he said, ‘Have you not reserved a blessing for me?’ 37) Then Isaac answered and said to Esau, ‘Indeed I have made him your master, and all his brethren I have given to him as servants; with grain and wine I have sustained him. What shall I do now for you, my son?’ 38) And Esau said to his father, ‘Have you only one blessing, my father? Bless me – me also, O father!’ And Esau lifted up his voice and wept.” – he was just totally crushed.
     Verse 39 – “Then Isaac his father answered and said to him: ‘Behold, your dwelling shall be of the fatness of the earth, And of the dew of heaven from above. 40) By your sword you shall live, And you shall serve your brother; And it shall come to pass, when you become restless, That you shall break his yoke from your neck.’
     41) So Esau hated Jacob because of the blessing with which his father blessed him, and Esau said in his heart, ‘The days of mourning for my father are at hand; then I will kill my brother Jacob.’ 42) And the words of Esau her older son were told to Rebekah. So she sent and called Jacob her younger son, and said to him, ‘Surely your brother Esau comforts himself concerning you by intending to kill you. 43) Now therefore, my son, obey my voice: arise, flee to my brother Laban in Haran. 44) And stay with him a few days [a while], until your brother’s fury turns away, 45) until your brother’s anger turns away from you, and he forgets what you have done to him; …’” – now, wait a minute ma’am, you were right there with him! You’re a part of this whole story – but all of a sudden, ‘this evil thing that you did – this trickery.’ So, who put him up to it? – his mother. “…’ then I will send and bring you from there. Why should I be bereaved also of you both in one day?’ 46) And Rebekah said to Isaac, ‘I am weary of my life because of the daughters of Heth; if Jacob takes a wife of the daughters of Heth, like these who are the daughters of the land, what good will my life be to me?’” - So, she’s having regrets.

Michael C. Garrett     About
Publication date: 2022     

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