Saturday, March 20, 2021

2021.03.20 Hopewell @Home ▫ Genesis 48

Read Genesis 48

Questions from the Scripture text: What was Joseph told in Genesis 48:1? Whom did he take with him? What was Jacob told in Genesis 48:2? What did Israel do in response? About Whom does Jacob begin speaking in Genesis 48:3? What two things had God Almighty done? Where? What two things had He promised in that blessing (Genesis 48:4)? About whom does Jacob now speak in Genesis 48:5? What claim does he lay upon them? Who will be Joseph’s (Genesis 48:6)? By what names will they be called in their inheritance? Whom is Jacob remembering in this conversation (Genesis 48:7)? What had happened to her? Upon whom does Jacob renew his focus in Genesis 48:8, to formally recognize and address them? How does Joseph describe them (Genesis 48:9a, cf. Genesis 48:5)? What does Jacob say to do with them (verse 9b)? What does Genesis 48:10 note about Israel? What does he do when Joseph brings Ephraim and Manasseh near? What does he say he hadn’t hoped to see (Genesis 48:11)? But in fact Who has shown him what? Now where does Joseph place them for the blessing (Genesis 48:12)? And how does he position himself? How does Genesis 48:13 summarize where each, Manasseh and Ephraim, were specifically placed? But what does Israel do in Genesis 48:14? How did he guide his hands? Despite what fact about Manasseh? Whom does Genesis 48:15 say Israel is blessing? What is the first thing that he calls God here? What is the second? What is the third (Genesis 48:16a)? What is the first/primary request of this blessing (verse 16b)? Whose names are to be named upon them (verse 16c–d, cf. Genesis 48:6)? What is the concluding request of this blessing? What did Joseph see in Genesis 48:17? How did he feel about it? What did he do about it? What did he say to his father (Genesis 48:18)? Why? What did his father do (Genesis 48:19)? What did his father say about himself (cf. Genesis 48:14)? What did he say about Manasseh? What did he say about Ephraim? What was the final part of the blessing (Genesis 48:20)? Thus what did he do, even in this blessing? What does Israel now say is happening to himself (Genesis 48:21)? Who does he say will be with Joseph? What will God do? What does he call the land? What additional gift does Israel give Joseph (Genesis 48:22)? Above whom? How had Israel obtained it?

This chapter gives us a picture of the blessedness that belongs to all of God’s people in Jesus Christ. The Holy Spirit draws that line of connection by the similarity of the language in Genesis 48:6 and Genesis 48:16

When adopting Ephraim and Manasseh as his own (Genesis 48:5), Jacob blesses Joseph (Genesis 48:15) by saying “Bless the lads; let my name be named upon them, and the name of my fathers Abraham and Isaac” (Genesis 48:16). This is the same language as applied to Ephraim and Manasseh’s brothers; “your offspring whom you beget after them shall be yours; they will be called by the name of their brothers in their inheritance” (Genesis 48:6).

Indeed, the blessing that God gives His people is not only to put upon us the name of one of His tribes (like Ephraim or Manasseh, verse 6, or Reuben or Simeon, Genesis 48:5) or even of His servants the patriarchs (like Abraham and Isaac, Genesis 48:16). God’s blessing upon His people is to put His own Name upon us as His own adopted children (cf. Numbers 6:27)!

God has made a people promise, to multiply them (Genesis 48:4a). God has made a place promise, to provide for them (verse 4b). God has made a presence promise, to be their God and to be with them (Genesis 48:21). 

And it is especially this promise that overcomes the death problem (Genesis 48:7Genesis 48:11/cf. Genesis 46:4, Genesis 47:28–30; chapter 15). Even when we die, God is still with us. Even when we die, we are still God’s children. Even when we die, we will yet come into our inheritance. How? Because in order to solve the death problem, God Himself will become a Man, so that we can be joined to Him not only in His death but in His resurrection.

The “one who will come from [Abraham’s] own body” (Genesis 15:4) is God Himself, the only-begotten Son. And it is in Him, ultimately, that believers are not just called by Ephraim’s name, or Manasseh’s name, or Reuben’s name, or Simeon’s name, or Israel’s name, or Abraham’s name, or Isaac’s name. In Jesus, believers are called by Yahweh’s Name! And as adopted children, they are made joint-inheritors with Christ (cf. Romans 8:15–17).

Why does God do this? Simply because He is pleased to. He is not convinced to do so by anything in us, nor is He following some law of inheritance that compels Him. He is “guiding his hands knowingly” (cf. Genesis 48:14Genesis 48:19) to do as He pleases.

How does God do this? Because He is personal (cf. Genesis 48:15, “before Whom my fathers Abraham and Isaac walked”), faithful (cf. verse 15, “fed me all my life long to this day”), and powerful (cf. Genesis 48:16, “Who has redeemed me from all evil”). He is personal; He has created a people Whom He redeems to have fellowship with Him. He is faithful; His mercies are new every morning, and there are no gaps in His giving of every good and perfect gift. He is powerful; there is no pain or danger from which He is not supremely and sovereignly producing the blessing of the believer!

Our God adopts believers in Christ as His own heirs because this is the way that He has been pleased to display that He is personal, faithful, and powerful in His mercy!

How has God been personal to you? Faithful? Powerful? In Whom, has He been all of these to you?

Suggested songs: ARP103B “Bless the LORD, My Soul” or TPH461 “Blessed Are the Sons of God”

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