Monday, March 22, 2021

2021.03.22 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?

As Jacob blesses his grandchildren in this chapter, the blessing points upward (in a manner of speaking) to God, backward to creation, forward to the great commission, and in all things to Christ.

The blessing points upward to God. He is God Almighty (Genesis 48:3), by Whose power we are enabled to walk before Him and be blameless (cf. Genesis 17:1). He is the promise-making God, Who has recently reiterated promises to Jacob (Genesis 48:3-4). He is the promise-keeping God, Who sustained Abraham and Isaac (Genesis 48:15 b), Who has always protected and provided for Jacob (Genesis 48:15 c), and Who has delivered Jacob from all evils (Genesis 48:16 a, even the current evils of his sickness and his imminent death).

The blessing points backward to the creation mandate. The conclusion of the blessing, “let them swarm into a multitude in the midst of the earth” takes us backward to Genesis 1:28 and a multiplication and dominion that are commanded there. 

The blessing points forward to the Great Commission. There (Matthew 28:18–20), the Lord Jesus will command the making of disciples from all the nations, using the language of being “baptized into the (Triune!) Name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.” Here, the blessings come in similar form. “Let my name be upon them, and the names of my fathers Abraham and Isaac.” We do the same, when a child is adopted and receives the name of his or her father. Yahweh puts His Name upon His people (cf. Numbers 6:27).

The blessing points, in all things, to Christ. In order for the blessing to be forever, and for sinners who must be forgiven, and for all the nations who fell and died in the first Adam, there is only one way such blessing can come: in the Lord Jesus Christ. Because it is in Christ, it depends not at all on any goodness in us. God is as free in His choosing whom to bless in Christ as Jacob is free to cross his arms and decide to bless the younger above the older, and to pick the two from the 11th son instead of the 1st. The blessing points, in all things, to Christ!

There is a blessing of adoption here, but it points to the ultimate blessing of adoption in Christ. The blessing points upward to God, backward to the creation mandate, forward to the great commission, and in all things to Christ!

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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