You know how it goes:
“WHAT IS IMPOSSIBLE WITH MAN IS POSSIBLE WITH GOD.”
Of course, modern man, secular humanistic man, has completely deleted that truism from his thinking.
Now you hear modern men asserting about themselves:
-There is nothing we can’t do.
-All things are possible for us.
-Nothing is impossible to us.
-There is no limit to what we can accomplish.
-Our potential is infinite.
And so the modern egotistical humanist blows his self-sufficient horn 🎷, and tries to convince himself that he has no limits.
It has been the 21st century deification of man, as man has become a god unto himself. We have watched the dethronement of God, and the enthronement of man in American culture.
But why is it then that 21st century man is so quick to give up on all kinds of RELATIONHIPS?
-Husband and wife relationships are written off as INCOMPATIBLE (Impossible). Marriages are discarded like so much trash, taken out and dumped.
-Friend to friend relationships are written off as IRRECONCIABLE (Impossible). The average length of friendships in America is 3 months.
-Democrat and Republican relationships have become more and more hostile. (Impossible) It is the modern civil war in America!!
-And so on and so on!
The Bible tells that God has given to us,
“THE MINISTRY OF RECONCILIATION.”
The last time I checked, the CROSS OF JESUS CHRIST IS BOTH VERTICAL AND HORIZONTAL:
-It restores man to God.
-It restores man to man.
II Corinthians 5:19,
“AND HE HAS COMMITTED TO US THE MESSAGE OF RECONCILIATION.”
THE MOST BROKEN RELATIONSHIP CAN BE MADE WHOLE.
You recall the story well I am sure. It is the incomparable drama of JACOB AND ESAU, born to Isaac and Rebecca. Or should I say ESAU AND JACOB, after all, Esau was born first of these unlikely twins and thereby has seniority over his brother Jacob.
This will become the sharp point of contention. As often happens with TWINS, one does not want to live in the shadow of the other.
There is not one aspect of this family feud that is simple, nor one element of this sibling rivalry that is traditional. It has so many twists and turns, that it over and over again leaves us stunned in silence.
Jacob! In a way, not much different from other kids. I mean, look at any child, and as soon as he can move a hand, we see him reaching for something that is not his, or something that he should not have.
It’s just that this trait started early in the womb, as already there Jacob’s hand is reaching to surpass his brother.
And if that evil impulse to have what is not his is not curbed, that is the person who will believe:
“THAT THE WHOLE WORLD WAS MADE ALTOGETHER FOR HIM, AND NOT HE FOR THE WORLD. ”
“THAT IS THE PERSON WHO BELIEVES THAT HE MUST HAVE EVERYTHING, AND PART WITH NOTHING.”
THE DECEIVER DECEIVES
This we know, that Jacob, whose name means DECEIVER, cunningly scammed his brother Esau out of his BIRTHRIGHT. Jacob became a SHYSTER, and as a SHYSTER he is forever pulling off heists.
It is amazing what a bowl of goulash can accomplish if the timing and circumstances are just right. Esau, a tired and famished hunter, lost the major part of his inheritance that was rightfully his as the firstborn.
How? He traded it for some FAST FOOD from brother Jacob’s DELI. It was all a set up by Jacob who knew his brother’s enormous appetite and weakness for food. No waiting, instant satisfaction, at your service. As Oprah Winfrey would say, “OH THAT’S GOOD!” The aroma was irresistible.
But Jacob the CONNIVER isn’t done. He is just started. In fact, it all began before he was born, believe it or not.
Honestly it started much earlier in his mother Rebecca’s womb, when he tried to pull his brother Esau back by the ankle to keep him from being born first. One of the earliest forms of birth control on record! You can’t make stuff like this up.
Jacob was instinctively a CHEATER. For baby 🚼 Jacob in the womb and birth canal, it was TRUMP TWIN TIME.
I’m intrigued to think what Jacob would have tried to pull off if he was a driver at The INDIANAPOLIS 500. I don’t think that He would have been tolerated on the racing circuit very long.
Before we can wash the dirty goulash dishes, SNEAK THIEF is at it again. Always planning, always plotting how to advance himself and get the upper hand.
This time with mommy’s help, Jacob gets all animal-skinned and hairy and smelly, for his brother was an outdoorish hairy man.
Pretending to be Esau in his disguise, Jacob comes before his aged and mostly blind dad Isaac. Then he CONNED his father out of the sacred PATERNAL BLESSING that really belonged to his older brother Esau. Huge! It brought down God’s special favor upon Jacob and his posterity.
NOW FAST FORWARD
Jacob now is on the run from his deceived and scammed brother Esau who he robbed twice. He is far from home and is a hunted man.
Jacob was informed that Esau and 400 warriors were approaching. So then Jacob takes on the role of a General in a War Room, for there is no way to CONNIVE HIS WAY OUT OF THIS ONE. Or is there?
Jacob is greatly distressed and scared to death! Yes indeed, sow the wind, and reap the whirlwind! What you sow, you reap. Your sins will find you out! The 🐔chickens come home to roost. All of that and more! What goes around comes around!
Jacob according to Genesis 32:7-8, divided the people that were with him, as well as the flocks, herds, and camels into two bands. So that if Esau and his 400 attacked one band, the other band could escape.
Jacob is preparing for battle. He is expecting the worst. He anticipates bloodshed, especially his own. Survival is the goal! He is at this point a petrified😨 General in a totally defensive posture.
THE CONNIVOR CONNIVES
He takes it several huge and desperate steps further. You are going to have a hard time believing what you are about to witness. You may think you are on THE JERRY SPRINGER SHOW. This is truly low life stuff. The wheels are turning in CONNIVER’S head!
According to Genesis 33:1-3, Jacob takes his handmaids (they are called mistresses today) and their children and puts them up front. Then Leah and her children behind them. Then Rachel and Joseph in the rear. (Sort of like Isis using women and children as shields.) Hey, when it comes to SELF-PRESERVATION, you gotta do what you gotta do!
He then bowed himself before Esau 7 times, as a subject to a King 👑. 7 is the number of fulness, so he was sending Esau signals of complete submission and servitude.
And Jacob has his wives, handmaids, and children bow before Esau 7 times as well. This isn’t 7-UP but rather 7-DOWN. It doesn’t get down lower than this. They are acknowledging Esau’s authority in their lives. That is exactly what Jacob wants. It is all part of the self-preserving scheme.
Jacob’s plan was to present the women and children as gifts to Esau to buy him off and avoid war. Yes, his wives and handmaids and all of their children as payment pawns for peace between them. Even his beloved Rachel is not exempt from his sacrifice-others-to-preserve-self deals.
If you will, all that is supposedly dear to him handed off. Unreal! To save his own neck! The SELF-SERVING CONNIVER IS AT IT AGAIN. Everyone is dispensable for Jacob’s welfare. Then Esau can use the women and children as he desires. SICK!
No. No, No, Jacob, do this instead. Line up yourself and the men with you, and offer yourself and them as offerings of peace, so that Esau will let the women and children go free! MY GOD MAN, CAN’T YOU SEE HOW PATHETIC YOU ARE! You are a sham of a husband and father!
It is tragic:
“JACOB HAS SINNED HIMSELF INTO A DIFFERENT SPECIES OF SINNER, TOTALLY SHAMELESS IN HIS SHAME.”
Jeremiah 6:15 talks about those who IN THEIR SIN ARE NOT ASHAMED, NEITHER CAN THEY BLUSH. That is Jacob!
FLASHBACK – FLASHPOINT
At least we must give Jacob this much – HE IS CONSISTENT! He is a SMOOTH OPERATOR, and his pattern of self-serving deception has been SEAMLESS.
Frankly, the designs of his deceit have also been nothing short of genius. He is not only SMOOTH, he is SHREWD.
Have you noticed that Jacob is LIMPING? Not long ago, a complete stranger out of nowhere put Jacob in a headlock. He initiated a wrestling match with Jacob that lasted all night. Sort of like MONDAY NIGHT RAW. (Genesis 32)
Jacob is not only SHREWD, He is STUBBORN! The HEAVENLY WRESTLER could not pin him, so he pulled Jacob’s hip out of joint. He now has a hitch in his get along. Jacob should be thankful that God didn’t kill him.
How do you stop a man from smoothly continuing on his crooked path? Perhaps CRIPPLING HIM WILL HALT HIM! Perhaps HOBBLING HIM WILL HELP!
“SINNERS OFTEN DO NOT SENSE THAT GOD IS ANGRY WITH THEM, UNTIL THEY ARE MADE TO FEEL THAT ANGER!”
But for sure:
“FAR BETTER TO FEEL IT IN THIS WORLD THAN IN THE NEXT.”
THE MIRACLE RESTORATION
Esau had understandably a 👎 mortal grudge and enmity against his traitorous twin brother. More than that, Esau and his 400 had full advantage over Jacob and his beleaguered company.
But then we read of the miracle in all of its astonishing 😲 reconciliation. Genesis 33:4 tells us in detail, and catches us all by surprise. Am I 👀 seeing what I am seeing?:
“AND ESAU RAN TO MEET HIM, AND EMBRACED HIM, FELL ON HIS NECK AND KISSED HIM, AND THEY WEPT.”
While Jacob is doing all of his “Bow Down Strategy,” ESAU RUNS TO HIS BROTHER, tackles him in love, hugs and kisses him, and they weep together.
Esau initiates everything most demonstratively, while Jacob robotically was acting out His scripted maneuvers. Jacob was not in the least expecting anything like that. The self-advancing deal maker finds himself in a LOVE EMBRACE!
SHOCKING! ARE YOU 👀SERIOUS? You have to be kidding! I mean, Jacob is preparing for attack and the attacker kisses him! He is going to beg for mercy, and the enemy weeps on his neck!
The entire thing is EVERYTHING REVERSED AND TURNED UPSIDE DOWN AND INSIDE OUT. The reconciling love of God is super powerful:
-The offended embraces the offender.
-The betrayed kisses the betrayer.
-The hated becomes the lover.
-The wounded becomes the healer.
-The warlord becomes the peacemaker.
-The one sinned against becomes the forgiver.
-The rejected becomes the acceptor.
You see, that is our God, the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. He is the RESTORER, the RECONCILER, the UNITER, the REPAIRER, the HEALER OF BROKEN RELATIONSHIPS.
No matter how broken and abused and betrayed those relationships may be. No matter who it is.
It is His restoring love in action. I Corinthians 13 tells us that it is a totally selfless, forgiving love that never fails. It holds no grudges, and does not rehearse past wrongs and hurts. That is God’s reconciling love in Jesus Christ.
But we have overlooked something crucial here. And that is that Jacob in petrified terror had cried out to God in Genesis 32:11,
“DELIVER ME I PRAY THEE, FROM THE HAND OF MY BROTHER, FROM THE HAND OF ESAU, LEST HE WILL COME AND SMITE ME, AND THE MOTHER WITH THE CHILDREN.”
That is the best of what Jacob was expecting here, and not at all even slightly expecting A LOVE IN! God is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think. (Ephesians 3:20)
God not only delivered Jacob from his brother’s hands, He turned the ❤ heart of his cheated brother toward him in love. Unthinkable! This kind of thing only happens in fairy tales. Or does it?
Esau had two knife wounds in his heart that were still raw, and he ignores the awful pain. God is the consummate reconciler – from hearts against to hearts for! Only God!
THE WHEELER DEALER CAN’T LET GO
But Jacob, even after the hugs and kisses and tears, still works on Esau with the goodies in his BRIBERY BAG. Read it for yourself in Genesis 33, it will cross your eyeballs and make you wince.
You see, God has already done the work. But Jacob still has to be in control, not God! And when Jacob takes control and not the Lord, He reverts to his selfish and conniving ways.
He is still offering his wives and handmaids and the children to seal the peace initiative with his brother.
“JACOB MAY BE DELIVERED FROM HIS BROTHER, BUT HE IS STILL NOT DELIVERED FROM HIMSELF.”
Esau says to Jacob in Genesis 33:9,
“I HAVE ENOUGH MY BROTHER, KEEP THAT THOU HAST UNTO THYSELF.”
IN OTHER WORDS, I don ‘t want your wives and kids, I WANT YOU BROTHER. Esau wants his brother’s love, while Jacob wants a PEACE TREATY AT ANY PRICE. Jacob the schemer is still wheeling and dealing.
Jacob, listen to what Esau is saying,
We laid in the same womb together. We were together long before we were born. We are twins! We complete eachother. We are each half of the same whole. My brother!
God’s love is way ahead of Jacob, even as God’s love is far ahead of us all! Jacob wanted an ally, while Esau wanted a brother.
There is a replacement world 🌎 being created all around us by Satan that excludes the need for reconciliation. An alternate universe if you will. It sounds like this:
“EVEN THOUGH WE GET A DIVORCE, WE CAN STILL BE FRIENDS.”
Oh how cordial of you. No, I WANT MY WIFE, I WANT MY HUSBAND! I have friends, but I only have one spouse. And God is able to get that spouse back if we let Him. GOD IS THE GREAT RESTORER. AMEN!