Sunday, June 21, 2009

Genesis 48 - What matters most in a father

Pray and Read: Genesis 48

Contextual Notes: You have heard the story of Joseph, how he was hated by his brothers, sold as a slave into Egypt, then elevated to the prime minister of the greatest superpower of the ancient world. When famine struck, his brothers came to buy grain in Egypt, and eventually Joseph’s whole family came to live in Goshen, the best part of Egypt. In today’s story, Jacob is very old and on his death bed. Joseph comes to see him with his sons, Ephraim and Manasseh. Jacob takes the opportunity to do what matters most as a father.


Key Truth: Moses wrote Genesis 48 to teach the Israelites how to be a father.


Key Application: Today I want to show you what God’s Word says about what matters most as a father.


Sermon Points: What matters most as a father
1.
Being there for them (Genesis 48:1-2)
2.
Having a relationship with the Lord (Genesis 48:3-4)
3.
Providing for them as your own (Genesis 48:5-6)
4.
Being affectionate with them (Genesis 48:7-11)
5.
Pointing them toward the Lord (Genesis 48:12-14)
6.
Blessing them (Genesis 48:15-20)
7.
Leaving them a legacy (Genesis 48:21-22)




Exposition: Note well,


1. BEING THERE FOR THEM (GENESIS 48:1-2).


a. Though Jacob was ill, and apparently on his death bed (48:21), he sat up and took all his strength to do what was important to him.


2. HAVING A RELATIONSHIP WITH THE LORD (GENESIS 48:3-4)


a. If you do all the rest and do not give them an example of living the life of a believer before them, you have failed. Do you have a genuine relationship with him? Or did you just walk down an aisle once, go through the water, and other than that you haven’t acted like a believer since?


3. PROVIDING FOR THEM AS YOUR OWN (GENESIS 48:5-6)


a. Since Jacob would have no more sons by his dear wife Rachel, he adopted his grandsons as his own, giving them the rank and position of his other sons. Sometimes as believers we must raise our grandchildren as our own. Sometimes we are called to raise someone else’s child as our own. Sometimes we are called to adopt a child as our own. If you find yourself in that position today, receive them and provide for them as you would your own child.


4. BEING AFFECTIONATE WITH THEM (GENESIS 48:7-11)


a. Both boys and girls need that affection from you, Dad. Sometimes we back away from showing affection, hugging and kissing them, but they need it. It tells them they are safe and that you accept them.


b. Do you know what your little girls need from you, dad? They need to hear you tell them a thousand times over that they are beautiful. They need to hear it from you over and over and over. That provides security for them that their dad thinks they are beautiful.


c. Do you know what your boys need to hear from you, dad? They need to hear that they can do it. That they count for something. That they can accomplish and achieve what is before them. That you believe in them and you believe they can do it. That communicates to them the confidence they need. It instills in them a healthy sense of manhood and security that they can meet challenges.


5. POINTING THEM TOWARD THE LORD (GENESIS 48:12-14)


a. In verse 14, Jacob crosses his arms, making a sign of the cross, a prophecy of the Cross of Jesus Christ. In fact, Ephraim represents the Gentiles who are a "group of nations" (48:19) who will come to faith in the God of Israel, who is Jesus Christ. Manasseh, the firstborn, represents the Jews who will come to faith in Yeshua as their Messiah second.


6. BLESSING THEM (GENESIS 48:15-20)


a. How do we bless them? Jacob was speaking prophetically over the boys Manasseh and Ephraim. He was predicting the blessing that they one day would become, how they would be protected by the Lord, and how they would increase. b. Many children only hear that they are worthless, that they were a mistake, that they were never wanted, that they will never amount to anything. That records in their spirits and lasts their lifetime. You know it’s true. Because there are hurtful things you heard years ago when you were a child from someone, perhaps a mom or dad, that still hurts after all these years.


7. LEAVING THEM A LEGACY (GENESIS 48:21-22)


a. What happens when you are gone? What will you leave your children? I’m not talking just about money and stocks and land. They might squander that. I’m talking about a spiritual legacy which doesn’t rot or depreciate or get taxed. Will they curse you when they remember you? Will you leave them anything that you accomplished? Anything to make them proud that you were their dad or granddad? Will they praise you for a characteristic you have? Will you leave them something of moral strength to help them through tough times and provide for them?


Invitation: The good news is that Jesus Christ has provided the only way to salvation for me and you and your children. Have you told your children about Jesus? Today is the day to share the good news of Jesus Christ with them on this day you as a dad are honored. Today is the day to build on that legacy you will leave them when you’re gone. Today is the day to make a fresh commitment to Jesus Christ to be what matters most in a father.