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“Oh, the unspeakable greatness of that exchange,—the Sinless One is condemned, and he who is guilty goes free; the Blessing bears the curse, and the cursed is brought into blessing; the Life dies, and the dead live; the Glory is whelmed in darkness, and he who knew nothing but confusion of face is clothed with glory.” Trailady

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A person God turned around many times.

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

God my Grandfather

“Who hath established all the ends of the earth? what is His name, and what is His Son’s name?” (Prov. 30:4).

I’ve heard the saying that “God has no grandchildren, only children.” But, I feel that I have grounds to disagree with this. I’m happy to have God for a Grandfather.

The children of Israel could have had a good understanding of the Godhead, because the Lord taught it to them through Moses. Through the providences of God with the experiences of Abraham and Isaac, they could have seen God the Father and His Son, and they could have seen that the One they were dealing with was the Son of God.

This would not have changed their monotheistic understanding. Moses preached that “Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD,” though I feel certain he knew that the Yahweh He personally dealt with had an Elohim greater than He. (Deut. 6:4). Moses must have seen the wonderful beauty in the Godhead’s mercy toward stubborn, willful man in the story of their forefathers Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

Christ, the Word of God, He through whom God’s thoughts were made audible, created a wonderful object lesson of God’s relation to fallen man as the Father of their Lord God that, for 2,000 years, would be taught to a patriarchal organization, which was then to proclaim it to a patriarchal world. But, they chose to live apart from Yahweh and learn of Him, and thus failed this awesome opportunity. They never grasped the message He gave them in Abraham, Isaac, and the prodigal Jacob.

The Son of God chose out a man from the post-flood generations as they degenerated in life-span. While ages could yet be counted to almost two centuries, He found a man, ten generations after Noah, who had been grinded down by a civilization boasting its sin and God-forgetfulness, a man humbled enough by the prevailing selfishness that he could hear Christ’s voice to him.

After testing Abram’s faith and developing his character, Christ made him a promise. “As for Me, behold, My covenant is with thee, and thou shalt be a father of many nations. Neither shall thy name any more be called Abram, but thy name shall be Abraham; for a father of many nations have I made thee. And I will make thee exceeding fruitful, and I will make nations of thee, and kings shall come out of thee.” (Gen. 17:4-6). As the Ancient of Days was the one great center of all creation, Abraham would represent Him on Earth through the beautiful character of peace and truth, grace and righteousness, which only God could give. “For the promise, that he should be the heir of the world, was not to Abraham, or to his seed, through the law, but through the righteousness of faith.” (Rom. 4:13).

In an era when numerals had their specific importance, the Son of God waited while He established, strengthened, and settled the faith and love of this man. Thus, at the end of a century, Abraham could not only correctly represent the infinite God to the son of his own bosom and to the world, but, that significant age of one hundred years left, in the minds of the Israel, a reverence for this great man, which placed him in the ranks of the heavenly holy ones, though later after Babylon, made him a demigod.

“And Abraham was an hundred years old, when his son Isaac was born unto him.” (Gen. 21:5). Now Abraham is standing in God’s place, as the friend of God, and as appearing in His stature. One hundred years old! From our standpoint and the perspective of the people of the nation of Israel, that was impossible to be and still have a promised son. So, through this man Abraham, Christ had performed a living parable to teach His people about His Father, the Ancient of days.

Then, He took the next step and taught them about Himself.

“And it came to pass after these things, that God did tempt Abraham, and said unto him, Abraham: and he said, Behold, here I am.
And He said, Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.…
And Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering, and laid it upon Isaac his son; and he took the fire in his hand, and a knife; and they went both of them together.
And Isaac spake unto Abraham his father, and said, My father: and he said, Here am I, my son. And he said, Behold the fire and the wood: but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?
And Abraham said, My son, God will provide Himself a lamb for a burnt offering: so they went both of them together.
And they came to the place which God had told him of; and Abraham built an altar there, and laid the wood in order, and bound Isaac his son, and laid him on the altar upon the wood.
And Abraham stretched forth his hand, and took the knife to slay his son.” (Gen. 22:1,2,6-10).

“Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest.” Does this sound like a world-famous Bible verse? “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

“…and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.” What does this say about Jesus? Was He a burnt offering? Wasn’t He the very one who substituted for Isaac that day, and for Abraham, as well as all of us? Wasn’t He a burnt offering?

Burnt offering? Jesus? Yes, a burnt offering. “Christ our passover is sacrificed for us.” (1Cor. 5:7). Jesus burnt? Yes. With what fire? With the wrath of God. As described by the punishment for the mark of the beast, “The wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of His indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb: and the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name.” (Rev. 14:10,11).

“Thou hast defiled thy sanctuaries by the multitude of thine iniquities, by the iniquity of thy traffick; therefore will I bring forth a fire from the midst of thee, it shall devour thee, and I will bring thee to ashes upon the earth in the sight of all them that behold thee.” (Eze. 28:18). “He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.” (Jn. 3:36). Because the whole world, from Adam and Eve to our day have been worshiping the devil the result has been vanity and vexation of spirit. In order to save us from that incurable condition, Jesus had to accept all that wrath of God, and infinitely so much more.

The spikes, the punches and backhands, the cat-o-nine-tails and crown of thorns crammed down onto His head was bad enough, but the mental torment that began in the Garden of Gethsemane and climaxed at 3 p.m. the next day was infinitely worse. The experience of God’s anger toward sin, and His sorrow and frustration toward hopeless sinners, was a fierce torrent that desolated Christ’s soul, like the fire that fell with such force upon Sodom and Gomorrah that it created the Dead Sea, and fills the deepest hole on the surface of this planet. On the cross, Jesus was dying in the place of a world of sodomy. Maybe some sodomites will yet be in heaven, because of the torrent of God’s fierce wrath which Jesus went through for them 2,000 years later on Calvary. Some prostitutes and thieves will be there too, because of the same Person’s love for them. (Matt. 21:31).

“Your father Abraham rejoiced to see My day: and he saw it, and was glad.” (Jn. 8:56). This is why we will look upon Jesus as our Father. “But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name: which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.” (Jn. 1:12,13). “For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given: and the government shall be upon His shoulder: and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” (Isa. 9:6).

So, Jesus is our Father, “who is over all, God blessed for ever.Amen.” (Rom. 9:5). And His Father, of whom Jesus said, “My Father is greater than I,” is our Grandfather, august, reverend, “who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords; who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can see: to whom be honour and power everlasting. Amen.” “O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are His judgments, and His ways past finding out! For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been His counsellor? Or who hath first given to Him, and it shall be recompensed unto him again? For of Him, and through Him, and to Him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen.” (1Tim. 6:15,16;Rom. 11:33-36). Thankfully, the great Father, who, high and lifted up and unapproachable, has given us mealy-mouthed, imperious sinners a bold and brave Advocate who knows our weak, nervous laughs, and His Father’s need for righteousness. Our Intercessor to the everlasting God we will gladly call our everlasting Father.

Then if Abraham represented God, the Father; and if Isaac, the son of promise, represented the Son of God; who should Jacob represent?

“And Isaac intreated the LORD for his wife, because she was barren: and the LORD was intreated of him, and Rebekah his wife conceived.
And the children struggled together within her; and she said, If it be so, why am I thus? And she went to enquire of the LORD.…
And when her days to be delivered were fulfilled, behold, there were twins in her womb.
And the first came out red, all over like an hairy garment; and they called his name Esau [Red, hairy one].
And after that came his brother out, and his hand took hold on Esau’s heel; and his name was called Jacob [supplanter, cheat, liar, usurper]: and Isaac was threescore years old when she bare them.
And the boys grew: and Esau was a cunning hunter, a man of the field; and Jacob was a plain man, dwelling in tents.…
And Jacob sod pottage: and Esau came from the field, and he was faint:
And Esau said to Jacob, Feed me, I pray thee, with that same red pottage; for I am faint...
And Jacob said, Sell me this day thy birthright.
And Esau said, Behold, I am at the point to die: and what profit shall this birthright do to me?
And Jacob said, Swear to me this day; and he sware unto him: and he sold his birthright unto Jacob.
Then Jacob gave Esau bread and pottage of lentiles; and he did eat and drink, and rose up, and went his way: thus Esau despised his birthright.” (Gen. 25:21-34).

Jacob’s name perfectly suited him. He was a true devil. He seemed to inherit the lion’s share of deceitfulness that plagued humanity. No one else like him could look you straight in the eye with the most honest, friendly face, and stab you in the back at the same time! He really took that ball and ran with it…. that is, until he met his match. One of the outcomes of his polished talent of deceit was the need to run away from his most often victimized person, Esau. Esau was planning to literally murder his brother. Hence, Jacob’s sense of desperation that drove him far from home, never to see his beloved mother again, and into the web of his self-centered, conniving, opportunistic uncle and soon-to-be father-in-law two times over, Laban.

From the start, Uncle Laban reflected back onto Jacob his own mastery of deceit, but with 30 more years of practice and perfection at his game. Soon, Jacob was married to Laban’s daughter, whom Jacob did not have the least interest in. And on and on Laban’s deceit went for 20 years until Jacob had four wives, 12 children, and the final one would cause the death of the wife Jacob had originally loved, and truly, with all his heart. His life caused him total confusion and a need of his fathers’ God. But when Rachel died, his heart broke; and so did his self-will and treachery. Then, it was like scales fell off Jacob’s eyes. Finally, for the first time, he saw himself as God saw him, with his deep-rooted wretchedness. He felt the filth and corruption of his heart. He remembered how staunchly his father and grandfather had maintained their holy characters.

Now he could see holiness and it was all that he could think about. How could he ever obtain it? The God of his fathers seemed so far away. His memories of family worship were so far in the misty past. It had been so long since he had spoken to the God who followed him as he ran from Esau. It would take the rest of his lifetime to convince God to speak to him again. Most assuredly, if God were anything like him, He would be offended at his perfidious life of hypocrisy. But, Jacob really needed to hear from the Lord God. He needed to know if God accepted sinners such as he was. Would God take him back? was the most haunting question. But, little did devious Jacob, the insidious one, know that God was reading his heart that very moment and setting in motion circumstances that would drive Jacob to struggle with the Lord God all night and bring to him the crystallizing decision to give his whole life and heart not just to his fathers’ God, but to the Lord his God.

“And He said unto him, What is thy name? And he said, [Snake in the grass].
And He said, Thy name shall be called no more 'Snake in the grass', but Israel [he who wrestles with God and overcomes]: for as a prince hast thou power with God and with men, and hast prevailed.
And Jacob asked Him, and said, Tell me, I pray Thee, Thy name. And He said, Wherefore is it that thou dost ask after My name? And He blessed him there.” (Gen. 32:27-29). A few years later, the Lord wasn’t renaming him, but only reminding him of his new name and commanding him to accept that new name and privilege and not to let Satan usurp him again. “And God said unto him,… Thy name shall not be called any more Jacob, but Israel shall be thy name.” (Gen. 35:10). This why Jesus told us, “Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” “To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it.” (Jn. 3:3;Rev. 2:17).

Thus, in the Old Testament account of Jacob we see the work of Christ and the Spirit of God in birthing His wayward children through the second birth of conversion. We are Jacob, the sinner, whom Jesus is turning into Israel, the overcomer from sin. In Jacob and Israel we see our hypocrisy, our incorrigible rebelliousness, our need for a helper in God. In Isaac we see our Father, Jesus, our rock, our deliverer. And in Abraham we see Jesus’ Father, the great and holy, but distant, Grandfather God.

And in the children of Israel we see those for whom we labor until they are born again in Jesus. As Paul put it, “My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ be formed in you.” (Gal 4:19).

4 Comments:

Blogger covnitkepr1 said...

Never thought of God as my grandfather.
Just checking back for any new posts you may have written.
I’ve been a follower on your blog for a while now and would like to invite you to visit and perhaps follow me back. Sorry I took so long for the invitation.

9/05/2012 6:48 AM  
Blogger David said...

Hi Covnitkepr,
I read a couple of your blogs, but couldn't figure out the secret letters and numbers in order to apply my comment. Sorry. I must have tried it 30 times. finally it dropped my comment.

9/05/2012 2:46 PM  
Blogger covnitkepr1 said...

Your gracious comment came through just fine. Different twist you had on the "rabble" gives food for thought.

Still would like for you to become a follower and I'd like for you to put a follow wedgit up on this blog so I could follow you in return.

If you wish, click on “dashboard” on the top right of you main blog…then click on “add a gadget” on the left side column…scroll down and click on “Follow” widget and follow directions.

9/05/2012 3:47 PM  
Blogger covnitkepr1 said...

Had to come back and give you this tip...to the right of the "letter and number box" is a circle ending in an arrow. Click on it and another combination will appear...kep clicking till you get an easy one.

Oh...and leave a space between the numberset and the letter set.

Hope this is a help .

9/06/2012 2:49 AM  

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