Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Day 37: Blessings and Woes

Genesis 49, 50, & Matthew 23:23-34

These chapters talk of blessings and woes. Jacob takes the opportunity to give blessings to his sons before he dies. However, some of them don’t sound like great blessings. Jesus gives a list of woes for those who have claimed to follow God, yet are blind to true faith.

Genesis 49:

Jacob prophesies while giving fatherly blessings to his sons. These honestly do not sound like words I would want my father to say to me on his death bed. It shows us that as much as we may not like it, our actions today will have an effect on our future tomorrow. We do get a glimpse that it is possible to change for the better. Judah had not lived the holiest of lives, but he changed becoming a righteous man and the head of a tribe that would give us King David and King Solomon and eventually Jesus.

Genesis 50:

Jacob is mourned for seventy days in Egypt and the seven more after his body is taken out of Egypt to be buried. Again we have the numbers 7 or 70, indicating competition. They carry Jacob to be buried in Canaan along with many Egyptian officials and higher ups. This is a state funeral type event.
Joseph’s brothers fear that the death of Jacob will end the kindness shown to them by Joseph. He replies with my favorite verse in Genesis, verse 20 “What you meant for evil God used for good.”
Joseph lived 110 years and asked for his bones to be carried away when the people of Israel eventually make their way back to the Promised Land.

Matthew 23:23-29

Woe to you. . . Straining out a gnat but swallowing a camel. This idea talks to how obsessed they were with religious purity externally but had lost perspective on the heart. Jesus mourns the fact that the religious leaders of the day have turned away from the heart of the law, an expression of God’s love for us and our love for neighbor.

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