by Rev Joel Yong
Genesis 46:33-34 ESV
When Pharaoh calls you and says, ‘What is your occupation?’
you shall say, ‘Your servants have been keepers of livestock from our youth even until now, both we and our fathers,’ in order that you may dwell in the land of Goshen, for every shepherd is an abomination to the Egyptians.”
Joseph instructed his family to state they were shepherds, so that they might be able to possess the land of Goshen for Egyptians abhorred shepherds and kept them at a distance.
Have you been despised and labelled and people choose to disassociate themselves from you? Being the subject of bias is never something easy to stomach.
But God can turn the distaste of discrimination, into favor. Because the Egyptians hated shepherds, Jacob’s family received territory.
TWC – The Word Connects: Connecting you to God and to one another … Monday 3 August 2015
We need God’s favor. With it, we are successful in everything we do, without it, we are defeated and we fail. Because of the guilt of Eli’s house, because of the sins of his sons Hophni and Phinehas, because of Eli’s failure to deal properly with his ungodly sons, the Lord’s favor on Israel was gone! God allowed the Philistines to devastate the Israelites, killing many of their soldiers, killing Eli’s two sons and capturing the ark of the covenant! Upon hearing the news of what happened, Eli fell backwards, broke his neck and died. Even his daughter-in-law died in labour and just before she died, she named her baby boy Ichabod which means “the glory has departed from Israel”! What a sad day it was for Israel! God is the same yesterday, today and forever. He is still the God who judges and punishes the wicked. While we have been saved by grace through faith, if we do not walk in the grace that God has given us, if we do not continue in the faith, if we deliberately continue to live in sin, then there is only judgment left for us too! (See Col.1:21-23 and Heb.10:26-27) While we worship God as the God of grace, we also worship Him as the Holy One of Israel, the Almighty God who is to be feared above all gods! As we walk with God each day, may we live holy lives before God. May we honor and please Him for He alone is God. And as we continue to walk according to His ways, His favor will continue to rest on us all the days of our lives!
Today’s Bible Text: “10 So the Philistines fought, and the Israelites were defeated and every man fled to his tent. The slaughter was very great; Israel lost thirty thousand foot soldiers. 11 The ark of God was captured, and Eli’s two sons, Hophni and Phinehas, died.” (1Sam.4:10-11)
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