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Gen. 35:1-29 - Revival - Part 3
We now continue in Genesis chapter 35 picking it up in vs. 8...
Vs. 8 - “Now Deborah, Rebekah’s nurse, died and was buried under the oak outside Bethel. So it was named Allon Bakuth.”
“Allon Bakuth” is the Hebrew for “Oak of Weeping.”
Now this had to be an emotional blow for Jacob. This Deborah here, she was the maid or nurse for his mother, and we know Jacob was very close to his mother, there was a great relationship there. You remember Jacob was her favorite and daddy favored Esau. Now of course mom is passed away and its evident that Jacob has taken this nurse under his wing and she’s a part of the family. We saw that in ch. 24.
So we might imagine, given the love he had for his mother, that no doubt Jacob and Deborah spent a great deal of time together just talking about mom and reminiscing about mom, she’s part of the family and now all of a sudden here is a dear one that has been taken from him. Maybe the thought had crossed Jacob’s mind, as it often does ours - “Come on God, I obeyed you, I ran your program and now this person that I love and care about is dead!”
Again, what’s being shown here is that just because we take steps of obedience, although yes, we ourselves will be protected, that doesn’t necessarily mean that everything is going to be peachy-keen. We’re not doing our brothers and sisters a favor when we push the lie that, once we come to Christ and follow God that our lives are going to be insulated from heartache.
But notice something else here, notice the great thing that does come with obedience picking it up in vs. 9 - YOU GET GOD!
Vs. 9-15 - “ After Jacob returned from Paddan Aram, God appeared to him again and blessed him. God said to him, “Your name is Jacob, but you will no longer be called Jacob; your name will be Israel.” So he named him Israel.
And God said to him, “I am God Almighty; be fruitful and increase in number. A nation and a community of nations will come from you, and kings will be among your descendants.”
The land I gave to Abraham and Isaac I also give to you, and I will give this land to your descendants after you.”
Then God went up from him at the place where he had talked with him.
Jacob set up a stone pillar at the place where God had talked with him, and he poured out a drink offering on it; he also poured oil on it.
Jacob called the place where God had talked with him Bethel.”
Here he takes a step of obedience and what happens?! God comes to him again! If you haven’t discovered it yet, listen up. Obedience always seems to open up that door to fresh revelation and a fresh encounter with the Lord! In our Christian experience, man, it just bears this out, that when we wander away from the Lord, when we start living in ch. 34 where’s there’s no mention of God, it just seems like the heavens are closed and God is silent. But somehow, by grace, God just breaks through that hardness in our hearts and He reveals to us what is is we need to do to get right with Him once again. Then we take that step of obedience and lo and behold, there’s that fresh revelation and fresh encounter with God once again.
So the Lord comes now and He appears to Jacob once again. So here now the Lord takes him back to the basic promise that He had made to him the very first time that He had met with him at Bethel.
This “reminding” is something we have seen God do over and over again with the Patriarchs. God seems, in this, to get the frailty and forgetfulness. Ps. 103:14. I’m grateful that God knows our frame and He is mindful that we are but dust. God understands, it is in the Bible, there is a verse on it specifically. God understands the faulty machinery that you and I are working with.
So it is very important that we remind ourselves with great frequency just how good God has been to us. Reminding ourselves how good God has been to us can really be the difference in setting ourselves upon the path of joy, or in the absence of that, we can discover ourselves really on the path of developing a real corrosive nature and a bitter spirit in life.
So God comes to Jacob and reminds him: “Son, you have been blessed and you are going to be blessed.”
Join us next week as we conclude Genesis chapter 35.
Blessings to you all.