Dysfunction | It runs in the family…Part 2

Hey there BCU Fam!

For this post, because of the informal format, please tune into the podcast recording (click here or on the BCU avatar below) and refer to the written post for the highlights. We pray the post blesses and encourages you. If so, please thumbs up AND leave a comment! Thank you and enjoy the post!

Podcast highlights:

  • Last time we were together, we learned that any behavior that deviates from the Word of God is sin. Sinful acts are a dysfunction—–and dysfunction runs in all families.
  • For instance, deception, broken promises, lies, murder–are all examples of sinful behavior that people have committed from the beginning of time.
  • In part 2 of our podcast, we continue talking about Jacob’s family——-a perfect example of a very dysfunctional family–and how God intentionally chose members of that family to be in the lineage of Christ.

Scripture references

Genesis 38-1-30

And it came to pass at that time, that Judah went down from his brethren, and turned in to a certain Adullamite, whose name was Hirah.

And Judah saw there a daughter of a certain Canaanite, whose name was Shuah; and he took her, and went in unto her.

And she conceived, and bare a son; and he called his name Er.

And she conceived again, and bare a son; and she called his name Onan.

And she yet again conceived, and bare a son; and called his name Shelah: and he was at Chezib, when she bare him.

And Judah took a wife for Er his firstborn, whose name was Tamar.

And Er, Judah’s firstborn, was wicked in the sight of the Lord; and the Lord slew him.

And Judah said unto Onan, Go in unto thy brother’s wife, and marry her, and raise up seed to thy brother.

And Onan knew that the seed should not be his; and it came to pass, when he went in unto his brother’s wife, that he spilled it on the ground, lest that he should give seed to his brother.

10 And the thing which he did displeased the Lord: wherefore he slew him also.

11 Then said Judah to Tamar his daughter in law, Remain a widow at thy father’s house, till Shelah my son be grown: for he said, Lest peradventure he die also, as his brethren did. And Tamar went and dwelt in her father’s house.

12 And in process of time the daughter of Shuah Judah’s wife died; and Judah was comforted, and went up unto his sheepshearers to Timnath, he and his friend Hirah the Adullamite.

13 And it was told Tamar, saying, Behold thy father in law goeth up to Timnath to shear his sheep.

14 And she put her widow’s garments off from her, and covered her with a vail, and wrapped herself, and sat in an open place, which is by the way to Timnath; for she saw that Shelah was grown, and she was not given unto him to wife.

15 When Judah saw her, he thought her to be an harlot; because she had covered her face.

16 And he turned unto her by the way, and said, Go to, I pray thee, let me come in unto thee; (for he knew not that she was his daughter in law.) And she said, What wilt thou give me, that thou mayest come in unto me?

17 And he said, I will send thee a kid from the flock. And she said, Wilt thou give me a pledge, till thou send it?

18 And he said, What pledge shall I give thee? And she said, Thy signet, and thy bracelets, and thy staff that is in thine hand. And he gave it her, and came in unto her, and she conceived by him.

19 And she arose, and went away, and laid by her vail from her, and put on the garments of her widowhood.

20 And Judah sent the kid by the hand of his friend the Adullamite, to receive his pledge from the woman’s hand: but he found her not.

21 Then he asked the men of that place, saying, Where is the harlot, that was openly by the way side? And they said, There was no harlot in this place.

22 And he returned to Judah, and said, I cannot find her; and also the men of the place said, that there was no harlot in this place.

23 And Judah said, Let her take it to her, lest we be shamed: behold, I sent this kid, and thou hast not found her.

24 And it came to pass about three months after, that it was told Judah, saying, Tamar thy daughter in law hath played the harlot; and also, behold, she is with child by whoredom. And Judah said, Bring her forth, and let her be burnt.

25 When she was brought forth, she sent to her father in law, saying, By the man, whose these are, am I with child: and she said, Discern, I pray thee, whose are these, the signet, and bracelets, and staff.

26 And Judah acknowledged them, and said, She hath been more righteous than I; because that I gave her not to Shelah my son. And he knew her again no more.

27 And it came to pass in the time of her travail, that, behold, twins were in her womb.

28 And it came to pass, when she travailed, that the one put out his hand: and the midwife took and bound upon his hand a scarlet thread, saying, This came out first.

29 And it came to pass, as he drew back his hand, that, behold, his brother came out: and she said, How hast thou broken forth? this breach be upon thee: therefore his name was called Pharez.

30 And afterward came out his brother, that had the scarlet thread upon his hand: and his name was called Zarah.

Genesis 49:1-28

1 And Jacob called unto his sons, and said, Gather yourselves together, that I may tell you that which shall befall you in the last days.

Gather yourselves together, and hear, ye sons of Jacob; and hearken unto Israel your father.

Reuben, thou art my firstborn, my might, and the beginning of my strength, the excellency of dignity, and the excellency of power:

Unstable as water, thou shalt not excel; because thou wentest up to thy father’s bed; then defiledst thou it: he went up to my couch.

Simeon and Levi are brethren; instruments of cruelty are in their habitations.

O my soul, come not thou into their secret; unto their assembly, mine honour, be not thou united: for in their anger they slew a man, and in their self will they digged down a wall.

Cursed be their anger, for it was fierce; and their wrath, for it was cruel: I will divide them in Jacob, and scatter them in Israel.

Judah, thou art he whom thy brethren shall praise: thy hand shall be in the neck of thine enemies; thy father’s children shall bow down before thee.

Judah is a lion’s whelp: from the prey, my son, thou art gone up: he stooped down, he couched as a lion, and as an old lion; who shall rouse him up?

10 The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be.

11 Binding his foal unto the vine, and his ass’s colt unto the choice vine; he washed his garments in wine, and his clothes in the blood of grapes:

12 His eyes shall be red with wine, and his teeth white with milk.

13 Zebulun shall dwell at the haven of the sea; and he shall be for an haven of ships; and his border shall be unto Zidon.

14 Issachar is a strong ass couching down between two burdens:

15 And he saw that rest was good, and the land that it was pleasant; and bowed his shoulder to bear, and became a servant unto tribute.

16 Dan shall judge his people, as one of the tribes of Israel.

17 Dan shall be a serpent by the way, an adder in the path, that biteth the horse heels, so that his rider shall fall backward.

18 I have waited for thy salvation, O Lord.

19 Gad, a troop shall overcome him: but he shall overcome at the last.

20 Out of Asher his bread shall be fat, and he shall yield royal dainties.

21 Naphtali is a hind let loose: he giveth goodly words.

22 Joseph is a fruitful bough, even a fruitful bough by a well; whose branches run over the wall:

23 The archers have sorely grieved him, and shot at him, and hated him:

24 But his bow abode in strength, and the arms of his hands were made strong by the hands of the mighty God of Jacob; (from thence is the shepherd, the stone of Israel:)

25 Even by the God of thy father, who shall help thee; and by the Almighty, who shall bless thee with blessings of heaven above, blessings of the deep that lieth under, blessings of the breasts, and of the womb:

26 The blessings of thy father have prevailed above the blessings of my progenitors unto the utmost bound of the everlasting hills: they shall be on the head of Joseph, and on the crown of the head of him that was separate from his brethren.

27 Benjamin shall ravin as a wolf: in the morning he shall devour the prey, and at night he shall divide the spoil.

28 All these are the twelve tribes of Israel: and this is it that their father spake unto them, and blessed them; every one according to his blessing he blessed them.

We do not have to be bound by our family lineage, background or past sin to be chosen of God.


BCUFam, if you turn to Matthew 1, you can see the lineage of Christ includes Jacob and his son Judah, both former deceivers; David a repentant murderer, and his wise son, Solomon, who had 1,000 women in his life; some wicked kings, Abijah and Rehoboam; some better, but faulty kings, Asa and Jehoshaphat, on down to Joseph, the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called Christ (Matthew 1:16). See that? The bloodline of Jesus had ALL kinds of dysfunction in it, but that did not stop Jesus from fulfilling His mission to save us. Armed with that knowledge, we should encouraged to know that our backgrounds do not disqualify us from being chosen and used by God. Are you still in doubt? Let’s pray about it.

Father, in the name of Jesus, we thank you for the good news and reminder that when you call us, the only special qualifications we need are a repentant heart, water baptism in Jesus name, the Holy Ghost on the inside, and a willing heart to serve and represent You in our lives. Thank you for helping us to serve You with distinction and blessing us to walk worthy in the vocation in which you have called us, so You, Jesus are glorified, honored and praised! We thank you for encouraging our hearts today and always, in Jesus name, we pray, Amen!

As a reminder, if you have not subscribed to BlenCouragesU.com, please do so! It’s free and a good place to get the encouragement, inspiration and information based the Word of God! Additionally, you can also see what we are up to on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Also, if you so inclined, join us for our Thursday Night Bible Study––we are LIVE on YouTube 8:05EST/7:05CST. You can also listen in and subscribe to the podcast on whatever platform BCU is available on. Some of those platforms are Amazon Music, AnchorFm, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, iHeart Radio, Spotify,  Stitcher Radio , and many more of your favorite podcast platforms!

Thank you SO much for stopping by! May God bless, keep and make His face to shine upon you as you #StayOnTheWall!

Love,

BCU

Dysfunction | It runs in the family…

Hey there BCU Fam!

For this post, because of the informal format, please tune into the podcast recording (click here or on the BCU avatar below) and refer to the written post for the highlights. We pray the post blesses and encourages you. If so, please thumbs up AND leave a comment! Thank you and enjoy the post!

Podcast highlights:

  • Awhile back, I was asked to teach at church–the topic was “The Dynamics of Family Leadership”.
  • That led me to a term called “dysfunction” which is loosely defined as something that does not operate properly or normally.
  • Many of us have conditions, illnesses and situations that run our families. That means there is a dysfunction.
  • Sin is also a dysfunction that runs in all families. God reminds us our dysfunction does not disqualify us from being chosen by Him, to serve Him.

Scripture references

Psalms 51:5

Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.

Genesis 35:1-29

And God said unto Jacob, Arise, go up to Bethel, and dwell there: and make there an altar unto God, that appeared unto thee when thou fleddest from the face of Esau thy brother.

Then Jacob said unto his household, and to all that were with him, Put away the strange gods that are among you, and be clean, and change your garments:

And let us arise, and go up to Bethel; and I will make there an altar unto God, who answered me in the day of my distress, and was with me in the way which I went.

And they gave unto Jacob all the strange gods which were in their hand, and all their earrings which were in their ears; and Jacob hid them under the oak which was by Shechem.

And they journeyed: and the terror of God was upon the cities that were round about them, and they did not pursue after the sons of Jacob.

So Jacob came to Luz, which is in the land of Canaan, that is, Bethel, he and all the people that were with him.

And he built there an altar, and called the place Elbethel: because there God appeared unto him, when he fled from the face of his brother.

But Deborah, Rebekah’s nurse died, and she was buried beneath Bethel under an oak: and the name of it was called Allonbachuth.

And God appeared unto Jacob again, when he came out of Padanaram, and blessed him.

10 And God said unto him, Thy name is Jacob: thy name shall not be called any more Jacob, but Israel shall be thy name: and he called his name Israel.

11 And God said unto him, I am God Almighty: be fruitful and multiply; a nation and a company of nations shall be of thee, and kings shall come out of thy loins;

12 And the land which I gave Abraham and Isaac, to thee I will give it, and to thy seed after thee will I give the land.

13 And God went up from him in the place where he talked with him.

14 And Jacob set up a pillar in the place where he talked with him, even a pillar of stone: and he poured a drink offering thereon, and he poured oil thereon.

15 And Jacob called the name of the place where God spake with him, Bethel.

16 And they journeyed from Bethel; and there was but a little way to come to Ephrath: and Rachel travailed, and she had hard labour.

17 And it came to pass, when she was in hard labour, that the midwife said unto her, Fear not; thou shalt have this son also.

18 And it came to pass, as her soul was in departing, (for she died) that she called his name Benoni: but his father called him Benjamin.

19 And Rachel died, and was buried in the way to Ephrath, which is Bethlehem.

20 And Jacob set a pillar upon her grave: that is the pillar of Rachel’s grave unto this day.

21 And Israel journeyed, and spread his tent beyond the tower of Edar.

Matthew 23:26-28

26 Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also.

27 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness.

28 Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.

I Peter 2:9
But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light.

Our dysfunctions do not disqualify us from being chosen by God. In fact, He specializes in dysfunction deliverance.


BCUFam, I have to confess that as I was preparing the podcast, the Word of God got really good to me—so much so, that it was a challenge for me not to break out in a loud “thank You, Jesus”! If I had, my voice would have likely overpowered the podcast recording! It is a blessing to know that God is with us, He saves us, and keeps all His promises to us despite the dysfunction in our families, and the sin and iniquity that we were born into. In fact, our dysfunctions do not scare God away–He knows all about them and chooses us ANYWAY, as we heard with Jacob/Israel in part 1 of our podcast. We will plan to get into part 2 the next time we are together!

As a reminder, if you have not subscribed to BlenCouragesU.com, please do so! It’s free and a good place to get the encouragement, inspiration and information based the Word of God! Additionally, you can also see what we are up to on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Also, if you so inclined, join us for our Thursday Night Bible Study––we are LIVE on YouTube 8:05EST/7:05CST. You can also listen in and subscribe to the podcast on whatever platform BCU is available on. Some of those platforms are Amazon Music, AnchorFm, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, iHeart Radio, Spotify,  Stitcher Radio , and many more of your favorite podcast platforms!

Thank you SO much for stopping by! May God bless, keep and make His face to shine upon you as you #StayOnTheWall!

Love,

BCU

Series: The called according to His purpose-part 4

Hey BCU family!

As usual, you are welcome to listen to the podcast (by clicking on the icon), read the written transcript, or both, either way, be blessed through listening and obeying the Word of God!

Before we get started, I was thinking, with the things going on today—the foolishness in the news, unholy alliances, calling the wrong right/right wrong, and our own personal trials, we NEED to know the Word of God and to  purpose in our hearts to get and stay grounded (attached to the Foundation, who is Jesus) and rooted (like a tree planted by the water—nourished and strong) by knowing who God says we are so we can STAY upright when the storms of life come and the winds of adversity blow.

In “The called” part 1  and part 2  as we looked at  Romans chapter 8, God says we are:

No  longer condemned
Walkers in the Spirit
Sons/Children of God
We are heirs/joint heirs
We suffer
The called according to His purpose
Predestinated
Justified
Glorified
Loved
More than conquerors
Not separated by the Love of God

Last time, we looked at I Peter 2:9 and covered “a chosen generation”. God calls us CHOSEN! Chosen for the rendering of special service to God.  And that special service included a look at Naomi, who God CHOSE and used to lead Ruth to Him, her new husband, Boaz who subsequently became the great-great-grandparents of King David (Ruth 4:22) and were named in the lineage of Christ in Matthew 1.

God also calls up EQUIPPED. We looked at Moses, a palace kid, who killed someone and was a fugitive (Exodus 2)—yet God called him to lead the Israelites out of bondage.

For those who are more background people, God CHOSE you, too! Exodus chapter 1 tells of two midwives Shiprah and Puah, who were instructed by the king to KILL male Israelite babies after they were delivered. The women disobeyed the king’s ordered and were duly rewarded by God. They were the CHOSEN and CALLED according to His purpose. No matter what God calls you to do—in front or behind the scenes, it all IMPORTANT. Not always easy, pleasant,  without tears or hurt sometimes, but nonetheless you are a VITAL role in the Body of Christ!

Referring to our Scripture text from I Peter 2:9, but you are a chosen generation, a royal; priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar people who should show forth the praises of Him who brought you out of darkness into His marvelous light, let’s concentrate on the second phrase—because God calls us–a royal priesthood.

This stems back to Exodus 19, after the Israelites left Egypt and were camped in the wilderness. After talking with God, Moses was to tell the people, “you’ve seen what I did to the Egyptians, and how I brought you out on eagle’s wings, and brought you to Myself. Now therefore, if you will obey my voice, in truth and keep my covenant, then you shall be a peculiar treasure into me above ALL people for the earth is mine. And you shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation (Exodus 19:4-5).

Let’s pause here. This should resonate with us, because did not God bring us out of our bondage to sin?  Did we groan with the heavy burden the hard taskmaster of what our former sinful lives were like? Were we not SLAVES to sin? Entangled? When we were tired of the party, being broken, feeling empty and burdened, we came to the altar, were saved according to Acts 2:38, and God brought us out on eagle’s wings to Himself.  Eagles can carry quite the load, protect their young and have powerful wings that glide swiftly. This demonstrates God strength and power, y’all. He DELIVERED us.  He REDEEMED us. He CHOSE us. HE CALLED us! Let the REDEEMED of the Lord say so! You are CALLED! YOU ARE CHOSEN!

So this kingdom of priests/royal priesthood…now in Exodus 19 and I Peter 2.  Ofttimes when we use this statement, there is a sense of “entitlement” in a natural sense ( for example, this prosperity mentality/we should be sitting on a pile of money,  not having to wait in a line, talking to servers at the restaurant—“no, take that food back, I’m the King’s kid!” etcetera).

While God does take GOOD care of His children, we are not entitled to look down anyone,  getting everything discounted/free treating the non-royalty (non-believers) wrongly or to a earthly mansion and a yacht! This royalty we are called to and chosen for by God comes with responsibility!

One definition we found for royal to a realm in which a king sovereignly rules, which ties into where Christ rules in our hearts. The word priests are now associated with Christians because we have access to God and offer not external but ‘spiritual’ sacrifices. More to come on that.

Let’s look at the function of a priest.

A priest was an official who was set apart from the rest of the community in order to carry out certain duties associated with sacrifice and worship. While priests were mentioned throughout the Old Testament, the  first organization and ordination of priests is laid out in Exodus 28 & 29 where Aaron and his 4 sons were appointed by God to minister to Him in the office of the priesthood.

Exodus 28 also outlines the exact garments the priests should wear, right down to the precious metals, stones, colors, lettering,  the measurements and the material—along with how to wear the breastplate and how a bell should be on the hem when Aaron went out and came in so he would not die. Everything was exact.

Application to us:
1) God’s priests were not just anyone who decided they wanted to be one after studying up on it, or coveting the position. They were CHOSEN by God for a reason—Aaron wore the turban with the engraved plate that bared any iniquity of Israel so their offerings were ACCEPTED by God.  THAT is NOT to be taken lightly.

The priests wore specific garments outlined by God down to the tiniest detail even underclothes (Exodus 28).  My thought is everyone knew who the priests were by what they wore. As a royal priesthood, we should be dressed a certain way— yes, so we are distinct. Now, I’m NOT here to regulate wardrobes back to cotton hosiery and 3 piece suits for the men to an outdoor sporting event in July–we distinguish ourselves with our modesty. Men and women alike.

I saw a video clip where a “Christian” celebrity was rebuked by an audience member for baring her chest area on a magazine cover. The audience member in turn was rebuked by the celebrity’s husband, saying she can wear what she wants in Jesus name. [insert blank stare]. I’m not here to regulate what folks wear, with the grace of God guiding me, I don’t want people having to “guess” if I’m saved or not based on my lack of/apparel. Remember man looks on the outside, but God looks at the heart.  Man looks at the outside, because they can’t see your heart.

In addition to that, we can’t just dress up the outside, cause that can look any way we want, but what do the insides look like? The Pharisees were dressed well, but Jesus said they were like white-washed seplechurs or coffins that APPEARED beautiful OUTWARD but inward were full of DEAD MEN’S BONES AND full of all UNCLEANNESS! (Matthew 23:27).  Anything dead on the inside stinks and no one is drawn to that expect flies and vultures who pick off carcasses. YUCK!

Bottom line: Just like the priests, people should know who we are without us saying a word—We have Jesus down on the inside that shows up on the outside. Are we dressed in the Word of God? Is Jesus an inside job?

God calls us DISTINCT!

2)Priests were also called to facilitate the different offerings (sacrifice or gift/Corban, see Mark 7:11)  for the people as a mediator between them and God. You just did not approach God and give Him your offering.  There are five main offerings spelled out in Leviticus (chapters 1-5), that came with very specific instructions that had to be followed a particular way.

The offerer was NOT forced to give an offering, it was something they wanted to do. (Leviticus 1:4 says he shall offer it of his OWN voluntary will at the door of the tabernacle). The offerer gave a perfect animal, prepared the animal or grain offering a particular way AND the priest had to offer up a specified way.  For example, once a bull was killed, the blood had to be sprinkled round about the alter by the door of the tabernacle of the congregation and the animal had to be laid in order on the wood for the fire. (Leviticus 1:11-12).

The priest were even had to offer up sacrifices for themselves for any accidental sin—if the priest sinned, everyone was guilty.

In Leviticus chapter 9, it outlines how the priests needed to offer up sin and burnt offerings to make atonement for themselves and for the people, as the Lord prepared His people to see His glory (Lev. 9:6), and because they did exactly what God said, verses 22-23 records that the glory of the Lord appeared to all the people—where the fire consumed the burnt offering and fat and when all the people saw it, they shouted and fell on their faces. HOW AWESOME!

How this applies to us:

First, we no longer need to offer up any animals for our sins. Jesus said in Hebrews 10:4 that it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats should take away sins..every priest offering up the same sacrifices daily could never take away sins. Can you imagine how many animals were offered up?!  So Jesus Christ offered His body ONCE to sanctify ALL(Hebrews 10:10). Christ offered ONE sacrifice for sins FOREVER (Hebrew 4:12).

Also, we no longer need a priest as a mediator. Remember the priest was the go between for the people and God offering wise. Jesus did away with that by sacrificing His life as well. Ephesians 2:13 says “but now in Christ Jesus, you who were sometimes far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.” Also, Ephesians 2:18 says, for through Him, we have access by one Spirit into the Father. Further, we can come boldly to the throne of grace to obtain grace and mercy to help in the time of need! (Hebrews 4:16).

God CALLS US to DIRECTLY to Him.

We have to stop here, BCU family.  I am prayerful that this Word empowers, encourages and challenges us all to change to be more like Christ. Stay tuned for “The called” part 5, as we finish up a royal priesthood. Thanks and God bless you for stopping by! Until next time, #StayOnTheWall!

 

Love ,

 

BCU