JACOB SAID UNTO JOSEPH
Genesis 48:1 And it came to pass after these things, that one told Joseph, Behold, thy father is sick: and he took with him his two sons, Manasseh and Ephraim. 2 And one told Jacob, and said, Behold, thy son Joseph cometh unto thee: and Israel strengthened himself, and sat upon the bed. 3 And Jacob said unto Joseph, God Almighty appeared unto me at Luz in the land of Canaan, and blessed me, 4 And said unto me, Behold, I will make thee fruitful, and multiply thee, and I will make of thee a multitude of people; and will give this land to thy seed after thee for an everlasting possession. 5 And now thy two sons, Ephraim and Manasseh, which were born unto thee in the land of Egypt before I came unto thee into Egypt, are mine; as Reuben and Simeon, they shall be mine. 6 And thy issue, which thou begettest after them, shall be thine, and shall be called after the name of their brethren in their inheritance. 7 And as for me, when I came from Padan, Rachel died by me in the land of Canaan in the way, when yet there was but a little way to come unto Ephrath: and I buried her there in the way of Ephrath; the same is Bethlehem.
This passage contains the last recorded private words of Jacob to his father Joseph. And herein are seen the power of the Holy Spirit in both strengthening Jacob from his sickness, and his prophesying as a Patriarch concerning even the issue from Joseph’s loins. For you will notice the reversal of the order of Joseph’s son’s names in verse one, from that given by Jacob in verse five. To Joseph, going by order of birth, they are listed as Manasseh and Ephraim. But to Israel they are reversed, and spoken of as Ephraim and Manasseh. Consider these verses:
1 Chronicles 5:1 Now the sons of Reuben the firstborn of Israel, (for he was the firstborn; but, forasmuch as he defiled his father’s bed, his birthright was given unto the sons of Joseph the son of Israel: and the genealogy is not to be reckoned after the birthright. 2 For Judah prevailed above his brethren, and of him came the chief ruler; but the birthright was Joseph’s:)
Jeremiah 31:9 They shall come with weeping, and with supplications will I lead them: I will cause them to walk by the rivers of waters in a straight way, wherein they shall not stumble: for I am a father to Israel, and Ephraim is my firstborn.
The majority of those in organized religion have solely considered the physical genealogy of the house of Jacob, who is Israel. But upon a careful searching of the scriptures we can more clearly see that the spiritual lineage with the Lord God does not follow the genealogy, but the birthright! Think! Don’t be brainwashed by the spirit which holds national Israel to be God’s spiritual Israel, for God’s spiritual Israel is the church! Matthew 21:43 Therefore say I unto you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof. 45 And when the chief priests and Pharisees had heard his parables, they perceived that he spake of them.
The church is that “holy Nation” to which the Lord ‘gave the kingdom.’ 1 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:
Are you going to believe the Bible, or the opinions of religion? Listen to these verses with an open heart: Romans 9:6 Not as though the word of God hath taken none effect. For they are not all Israel, which are of Israel: Galatians 6:15 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature. 16 And as many as walk according to this rule, peace be on them, and mercy, and upon the Israel of God.
1 Corinthians 12:13 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.
Galatians 3:28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.
Romans 2:28 For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh: 29 But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God.
The Lord is always choosing the younger over the elder. He did so with Abel over Cain, who was of Satan! 1 John 3:12 Not as Cain, who was of that wicked one,… And the Apostle Paul in his First Corinthian letter reveals this concerning the first and last Adams. 1 Corinthians 15:45 And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit. 46 Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual. 47 The first man is of the earth, earthy: the second man is the Lord from heaven.
For we clearly read of our Lord’s words: Mark 10:31 But many that are first shall be last; and the last first.
And what are the first recorded words of Jacob to Joseph? They do not concern his present physical condition. And that is what caused Joseph to come to see him. But his first words are of the reality of the Person of God in his experiences. This is how the ancient church spoke to their offspring. The record of their faith was handed down from generation to generation.
We have a completed Bible – the word of God in writing. We can turn to any page, any chapter, any book and read of ancient Abraham, to the psalmist David, to Peter and John, then follow the Apostle Paul in his missionary journeys. But these brothers, until Moses came on the scene, repeated their personal testimonies for the perpetuating of the issues of their faith. (In our day people had rather go on and on about the tuna fish sandwich they had yesterday for lunch on their ‘blogs!’)
And we notice that Jacob said, “God Almighty appeared unto me.” That was the term in which the Lord God revealed himself to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Genesis 17:1 And when Abram was ninety years old and nine, the LORD appeared to Abram, and said unto him, I am the Almighty God; walk before me, and be thou perfect.
Genesis 28:1 And Isaac called Jacob, and blessed him, and charged him, and said unto him, Thou shalt not take a wife of the daughters of Canaan. 3 And God Almighty bless thee, and make thee fruitful, and multiply thee, that thou mayest be a multitude of people; 35:10 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;
This was the necessary revelation to these who strongly needed to know the Lord as Protector; as both Guard and Guide. And their seed should finally wind up being led into Egypt. But then we read of the Lord’s revelation to Moses, who was given the task of leading the Lord’s people out of Egypt to become their own nation, we see a progressive revelation of Himself given to Moses.
Exodus 6:2 And God spake unto Moses, and said unto him, I am the LORD: 3 And I appeared unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, by the name of God Almighty, but by my name JEHOVAH was I not known to them. 6 Wherefore say unto the children of Israel, I am the LORD, and I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, and I will rid you out of their bondage, and I will redeem you with a stretched out arm, and with great judgments: 7 And I will take you to me for a people, and I will be to you a God: and ye shall know that I am the LORD your God, which bringeth you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians. 8 And I will bring you in unto the land, concerning the which I did swear to give it to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob; and I will give it you for an heritage: I am the LORD. He goes from being known as God Almighty to a more personal revelation of Jehovah.
And that revelation continues to progress. For there was also given a name among mankind that brought God to be among us. Matthew 1:21 And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins. To see him was to see Abraham’s God Almighty. To see him was to see Moses’ Jehovah. John 14:1 Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. 9 Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father?
And that name was exalted above every other name throughout the world. Philippians 2:8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. 9 Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:
And now that name is freely afforded the true church for their approach to God Almighty. John 16:23 And in that day ye shall ask me (Jesus on earth), nothing. Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, he will give it you. 24 Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full. 25 These things have I spoken unto you in proverbs: but the time cometh, when I shall no more speak unto you in proverbs, but I shall shew you plainly of the Father. 26 At that day ye shall ask in my name: and I say not unto you, that I will pray the Father for you:
Jacob then adopts Joseph’s two sons into the lineage of the tribes of Israel. He states that these grandsons shall occupy the same place of authority as do his sons! In verse five of our text he states that Ephraim and Manasseh shall be the same as Reuben and Simeon. And he did all this while being sick! The spirit indeed is willing, while the flesh is weak.
Then he seems to revert to sharing an emotional story, as elderly people are prone to do. For he begins to tell about the death of his beloved Rachel, Joseph’s mother. But this is not simply a trip down Memory Lane! For there has been a strong impression of the sorrow of Rachel that has lingered in his heart for years. He still remembers her envy of his other wife, Leah, and her loading him up with guilt and blame with her words directed to him, “Give me children, or else I die.” Genesis 30:1 And when Rachel saw that she bare Jacob no children, Rachel envied her sister; and said unto Jacob, Give me children, or else I die. 2 And Jacob’s anger was kindled against Rachel: and he said, Am I in God’s stead, who hath withheld from thee the fruit of the womb?
There was nothing wrong with Rachel wanting children. That desire seems to be ‘built in’ to the female spirit. What was nagging Jacob’s heart was that it was motivated by envy! Job 5:2 For wrath killeth the foolish man, and envy slayeth the silly one. She was desiring a good thing in a wrong way! For she wanted children, not for the glory of God, but due to a competitive spirit with her sister! 1 Corinthians 10:31 Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.
Now after all these years, upon seeing the two sons of Joseph, Jacob has it opened to his heart by the Holy Spirit that he now shall act in God’s stead and give Rachel more children. And what a great number of children the Lord provides! For he is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, (Ephesians 3:20).
Consider these verses which reveal the vast number of children that were born in the tribes of Ephraim and Manasseh. Numbers 26:28 The sons of Joseph after their families were Manasseh and Ephraim. 34 These are the families of Manasseh, and those that were numbered of them, fifty and two thousand and seven hundred. 37 These are the families of the sons of Ephraim according to those that were numbered of them, thirty and two thousand and five hundred. These are the sons of Joseph after their families.
But when we go on to consider He whom Jacob pictures, we see greater miracles regarding the spiritual births of God’s children. For with just one ‘seed,’ which is our Lord Jesus Christ, being ‘planted’ into the earth for three days after his crucifixion, there is raised up an innumerable multitude! Galatians 3:16 Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ.
John 12:24 Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit. 33 This he said, signifying what death he should die.
This is revealed to us by the tiny mustard seed. Mark 4:30 And he said, Whereunto shall we liken the kingdom of God? or with what comparison shall we compare it? 31 It is like a grain of mustard seed, which, when it is sown in the earth, is less than all the seeds that be in the earth: 32 But when it is sown, it groweth up, and becometh greater than all herbs, and shooteth out great branches; so that the fowls of the air may lodge under the shadow of it.
Revelation 7:9 After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands; 5:9 Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation; Pastor Gene Breed
November 23, 2016