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In the last article we had taken a quick look at the recorded account that dealt with Esau's descendants. Now the reason why I did this, deals with the belief, that knowing this particular information when it came to Esau, is important to know?
For the record backs an earlier prophecy that the Lord had spoken through Isaac:
"[Esau] your dwelling will be away from the earth's richness, and away from the dew of heaven above. You will live by the sword and you will serve your brother [Jacob]. But when you grow restless, you will throw his yoke from off your neck." -- Genesis 27:39-40
Now although the prophecy itself is of great importance -- the mere fact that at this point in time, it was in the middle of actually being fulfilled (and eventually totally fulfilled), helps to further validate and reinforce the Divine nature of the Sacred Record.
For no other book can make this sort of claim -- and moreover if it were? have the recorded prophecy fulfillment's, to back it up with. However let me stop, before I really go off on a tangent.
Nonetheless, we're now at a point from within our biblical journey, where we find ourselves entering into the phase where Israel's foundation, in regards to the twelve sons of Israel (Jacob), would begin to take shape? First off, I want you to notice how the recent actions of Jacob's twelve sons, would begin to be a foretelling of what importance they would individually hold, when it comes to the nations they would eventually be the forefathers of -- and more importantly, how those nations would overall, interact with Israel.
Understand that we already have the accounts of Jacob's sons Simeon and Levi -- for they were the second and third sons that were born unto Leah. For we're told by the Sacred Record, that they were the ones who'd led the deceptive, and fatal attack upon the Shechemites. Now again, the reasons behind their vengeful actions, dealt with Shechem defiling their sister Dinah, by sleeping with her.
Know that some would teach, that it was this event -- that had caused God to allow Rachel's death, during the birth of her second son Benjamin. Now I tend not to indulged in these types of speculations, but for the record, I definitely don't agree with this particular viewpoint.
Nonetheless, we're also told by the Sacred Record -- that Reuben had sinned by sleeping with his father's wife Bilhah, and because of this, he probably lost his birthright. Know that Reuben was entitled traditionally (or so it would seem) to be the next steward of the Abrahamic Covenant, being that he was Jacob's first born son.
But there's one thing that I've been noticing, when it comes to the telling of the Scriptures? For I've noticed, that it really doesn't matter what order of birth you were born in, when it comes to what God has predestine you for. For example: Abraham was chosen by God, and he wasn't the first born in his father's household. And although the Sacred Record has him constantly listed first (for who he was), it's quite possible that he very well, could have been born after his brothers Haran and Nahor (who was named after his grandfather by the way).
For Nahor would eventually marry Haran's daughter Milcah -- and being that Haran's daughter would be old enough for him to marry, would suggest, that Haran was probably born first, in regards to the order between those two brothers. So this is why I have their order of birth, as being: Haran, then Nahor, who was then followed by Abraham.
However that may have been, I believe that the Sacred Record had Abraham listed first, simply because of his dignity -- which is not uncommon, when one is listed before the older sibling, from within the telling of the Scriptures. Know that Moses was listed before his oldest brother Aaron. And Shem (who was Noah's son), was listed first before his brothers, Ham and Japheth.
Yes you read that right, Shem was not the first born of Noah's sons as most would believe? For we're taught to believe this to be so, simply because Shem's name is often put first, from out of the three. But take note of this particular Scripture: "Unto Shem also, the father of all the children of Eber, the brother of <b>Japheth the elder</b>, even to him were children born." -- Genesis 10:21
Be that as it may, another good example, would be that of Ishmael? For he was born before Isaac, and yet, Isaac ends up carrying the Abrahamic Covenant banner instead of him.
Another example, would be that Esau? For he was born before Jacob, and yet, Jacob would eventually become the Abrahamic Covenant banner ambassador, instead of him. And as for Jacob, it doesn't matter how it came about, for Jacob had already been predestined by God to be the rightful holder of the birthright. Remember what the Most High had told Rebekah:
"The babies jostled each other within her, and she said, 'Why is this happening to me?' So she went to enquire of the Lord. [Then] the Lord said to her, 'Two nations are in your womb, and two peoples from within you will be separated; one people will be stronger than the other, and the older [Esau] will serve the younger [Jacob].'" -- Genesis 25:22,23
Now I'd mentioned all of these different examples, because Jacob's son Joseph, would end up playing a very important role, when it comes to the nation of Israel. And he would do this, even though he wasn't the first born from out of Jacob's twelve sons.
So let's be patient and diligent, as we take the Sacred Record step-by-step. And let's do this, so that we can delightfully consume the Word of God. Trust me, it tastes so much better when you can savor and enjoy it, without force feeding yourself with an overload of fractured information, over a short period of time.
However, let's move forward -- for we now know that Reuben, Simeon and Levi had already made some major mistakes from within their early lives. Mistakes that I believe, had caused them, to lose out on being the next "promise bearer" of the Abrahamic Covenant. Now I'm not suggesting that this was the main reason why God had chosen Joseph, to play such an important part in Israel's future? or why he'd became Jacob's favorite son.
And although it would be far easier to chalk it up to this, by making such a claim -- when it came to God choosing Joseph, know that it goes much deeper than that. For there are other factors, that would overall play into this, and I will address them shortly.
Now the reason why I'm mentioning these events, deals with me trying to gain insight from the Sacred Record, both naturally and spiritually. While trying to put forth sound reasoning, on why things had turned out in such a way, when it comes to anything that the telling of the Scriptures would reveal to us.
So basically, if I can add reason and logic to the events, and the reactions behind the actions -- then I can personally learn, while gaining some deeper insight and wisdom, from their personal recorded experiences -- as I appropriately apply what I've learned from God's Word, to my own life. And although the time period may be different from where we are today, the principles and precepts of the Sacred Text remains the same.
Now as we move forward. Know that Joseph was still very young, for he was only 17 years of age. And it's at this time, that he was a keeper of the flock, just like his father Jacob was, before him. Next we're told, that Joseph was in the field with his brothers: Dan and Naphtali the sons of Bilhah; and with Gad and Asher the sons of Zilpah.
And it's at this time, that Joseph would observe his brothers doing wrong while they were out in the field. And because of this, Joseph would bring back a bad report to his father. Needless-to-say, when his brothers had found out that Joseph had told their father, when it came to their mischief -- they weren't too happy about it.
However, the mere fact that Jacob had trusted Joseph enough to hold such a responsibility, when it came to him secretly monitoring his brothers behaviors, while they were away from the house -- spoke volumes of Joseph's level of maturity at such a young age.
Now it's at this point from within the Sacred Record, that we now find out, that Joseph was Jacob's favorite son. For were told that Jacob loved Joseph more than any of his other sons. Also notice how the Scared Text points out the reason for this favor -- in which it states, that it dealt with Joseph being born unto Jacob, at such an old age. For the patriarch was 91 years old, when Joseph was born unto Rachel: "Now Israel loved Joseph more than all his children, because he was the son of his old age. Also he made him a tunic of many colors." -- Genesis 37:3
Know, that I personally don't believe, that it's because he longed for a particular child, which took awhile for him to get -- like his grandfather Abraham had done before him. For we must keep in mind, that Abraham was 100 years of age, when Isaac was born unto him and Sarah. And although he already had a son with Hagar, who was named Ishmael. Know that Ishmael wasn't the "promise seed" that the Lord had foretold to Abraham earlier in his life, as a particular world religion would insist on claiming:
"And Abraham said to God, 'If only Ishmael might live under your blessing!' Then God said, 'Yes, but your wife Sarah will bear you a son, and you will call him Isaac. I will establish my covenant with him as an everlasting covenant for his descendants after him.'" -- Genesis 17:18,19
Understand that this event would be different, when it came to Jacob and his situation? And the reason why this was so, dealt with Rachel, the wife he loved with all his heart. For years, Jacob would endure the bickering, and competitive fighting between his two wives Rachel and Leah. Know that Jacob would watch for years, how God would early on, bless Leah with four sons, which were followed by two more -- before Rachel had any kids of her own.
Jacob would also watch how Rachel had longed for that opportunity to have her own child, for she'd tried everything in her power to make a family of her own. But it didn't matter how hard she tried, that child-bearing void would go unfulfilled, up until Joseph was born. Now can you imagine the excitement and happiness, that Jacob had for the love of his life, when Rachel could finally call a child, one of her own?
But God wouldn't be done, for He would eventually bless her with another
son, who Jacob would name Benjamin. But unfortunately, Rachel would
lose her life in the process. Understand that what this meant, is that
Jacob would lose the wife he held dear and true to his heart, since he
had first saw her.
And on top of this, Joseph would lose his mother at such a very young age -- and Benjamin her second son, would never know her. Now personally, I can see how that would drive Jacob and Joseph closer together -- for this would also explain the close relationship, and strong bond, that Joseph and his baby brother Benjamin would eventually develop throughout the years as well.
However that may have been, next we find that Jacob had given Joseph a coat of many colors. Understand that this wasn't an ordinary coat? for the Sacred Record tells us, that it was a very expensive ornamented robe. Now some would teach and preach, that this was an indicator that Joseph would become the next steward of the Abrahamic Covenant. Or in other words, that he would inherit the birthright over his other brothers?
And honestly, I must admit, that I can't totally disagree with that notion -- being that it's very well possible, since the other brothers by this time, had already made some serious sinful mistakes. Now I'll try to address these sinful mistakes by Joseph's brothers as we go forward -- but overall, I think that Jacob had gave him the coat, for the personally reasons I pointed out earlier in this article.
Besides, God will give Jacob a divine confirmation that might suggest, that he was right to signal out Joseph. Needless-to-say, Joseph's brothers hated him for these reasons. For they couldn't speak a kind word to him (or about him), being that their father loved him so much so.
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