Walk 14 – We have come to another time of meditation and reflection. The themes are: Abraham, friend of God; the promise through Isaac; Jacob’s struggles; and Joseph’s dreams.
“Then the Lord said, ‘Shall I hide from Abraham what I am about to do? Abraham will surely become a great and powerful nation, and all nations on earth will be blessed though him. For I have chosen him, so that he will direct his children and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord by doing what is right and just, so that the Lord will bring about for Abraham what he has promised him.’” (Genesis 18: 17 – 19)
Compare the words of Jesus: “You are my friends if you do what I command. I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last—and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you. (John 15: 14 – 16)
Because we have been chosen just as Abraham was chosen we become part of the blessing to all nations.
Abraham laughed when he considered having a son at the age of 100 by Sarah who was 90. The continuity of the generations is awesome when we realize that Jacob and Esau were born when Isaac was 60. Since Abraham died at the age of 175; his grandsons would have known him for 15 years. His household was indeed directed to do what is just and right by a man who truly had learned the ways of God. Isaac became prosperous; he travelled in the land the Lord promised to Abraham and the same promise was spoken to Isaac. He planted seed and the Lord multiplied it a hundredfold. He had so many flocks he had to separate from the Philistines who were also in the land at the time.
Jacob became Israel and Esau became Edom. Jacob finally contended with his own character and his name was changed from “he deceives” to “he struggles with God.”
Esau, meanwhile, suppressed his bitterness but never struggled to overcome it. In later generations God would not permit Israel from invading Edom; but Edom was often an enemy of Israel. When Judah went into exile and Jerusalem destroyed; Edom laughed and mocked. This was not pleasing to God and Edom has disappeared from the pages of history.
Notice that the beginning of the “account of Jacob,” begins with “Joseph, a young man of seventeen.” (37: 2a) The plan and purpose of God that had already been stated to Abraham, “Then the Lord said to him, `Know for certain that your descendants will be strangers in a country not their own, and they will be enslaved and mistreated four hundred years.’” (15: 13)
God made this come to pass through the life of Joseph. It began to happen by giving Joseph dreams. Then he was enslaved. Then a famine occurred. Then the whole family went down to Egypt. What an adventure! We are still part of God’s plan and purpose.