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Service Archives > 01 Genesis - 2009 > Joseph Looks A Lot Like Jesus

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Joseph Looks A Lot Like Jesus
Genesis 37
Skip Heitzig

Genesis 37 (NKJV™)
1 Now Jacob dwelt in the land where his father was a stranger, in the land of Canaan.
2 This is the history of Jacob. Joseph, being seventeen years old, was feeding the flock with his brothers. And the lad was with the sons of Bilhah and the sons of Zilpah, his father's wives; and Joseph brought a bad report of them to his father.
3 Now Israel loved Joseph more than all his children, because he was the son of his old age. Also he made him a tunic of many colors.
4 But when his brothers saw that their father loved him more than all his brothers, they hated him and could not speak peaceably to him.
5 Now Joseph had a dream, and he told it to his brothers; and they hated him even more.
6 So he said to them, "Please hear this dream which I have dreamed:
7 "There we were, binding sheaves in the field. Then behold, my sheaf arose and also stood upright; and indeed your sheaves stood all around and bowed down to my sheaf."
8 And his brothers said to him, "Shall you indeed reign over us? Or shall you indeed have dominion over us?" So they hated him even more for his dreams and for his words.
9 Then he dreamed still another dream and told it to his brothers, and said, "Look, I have dreamed another dream. And this time, the sun, the moon, and the eleven stars bowed down to me."
10 So he told it to his father and his brothers; and his father rebuked him and said to him, "What is this dream that you have dreamed? Shall your mother and I and your brothers indeed come to bow down to the earth before you?"
11 And his brothers envied him, but his father kept the matter in mind.
12 Then his brothers went to feed their father's flock in Shechem.
13 And Israel said to Joseph, "Are not your brothers feeding the flock in Shechem? Come, I will send you to them." So he said to him, "Here I am."
14 Then he said to him, "Please go and see if it is well with your brothers and well with the flocks, and bring back word to me." So he sent him out of the Valley of Hebron, and he went to Shechem.
15 Now a certain man found him, and there he was, wandering in the field. And the man asked him, saying, "What are you seeking?"
16 So he said, "I am seeking my brothers. Please tell me where they are feeding their flocks."
17 And the man said, "They have departed from here, for I heard them say, 'Let us go to Dothan.'" So Joseph went after his brothers and found them in Dothan.
18 Now when they saw him afar off, even before he came near them, they conspired against him to kill him.
19 Then they said to one another, "Look, this dreamer is coming!
20 "Come therefore, let us now kill him and cast him into some pit; and we shall say, 'Some wild beast has devoured him.' We shall see what will become of his dreams!"
21 But Reuben heard it, and he delivered him out of their hands, and said, "Let us not kill him."
22 And Reuben said to them, "Shed no blood, but cast him into this pit which is in the wilderness, and do not lay a hand on him"--that he might deliver him out of their hands, and bring him back to his father.
23 So it came to pass, when Joseph had come to his brothers, that they stripped Joseph of his tunic, the tunic of many colors that was on him.
24 Then they took him and cast him into a pit. And the pit was empty; there was no water in it.
25 And they sat down to eat a meal. Then they lifted their eyes and looked, and there was a company of Ishmaelites, coming from Gilead with their camels, bearing spices, balm, and myrrh, on their way to carry them down to Egypt.
26 So Judah said to his brothers, "What profit is there if we kill our brother and conceal his blood?
27 "Come and let us sell him to the Ishmaelites, and let not our hand be upon him, for he is our brother and our flesh." And his brothers listened.
28 Then Midianite traders passed by; so the brothers pulled Joseph up and lifted him out of the pit, and sold him to the Ishmaelites for twenty shekels of silver. And they took Joseph to Egypt.
29 Then Reuben returned to the pit, and indeed Joseph was not in the pit; and he tore his clothes.
30 And he returned to his brothers and said, "The lad is no more; and I, where shall I go?"
31 So they took Joseph's tunic, killed a kid of the goats, and dipped the tunic in the blood.
32 Then they sent the tunic of many colors, and they brought it to their father and said, "We have found this. Do you know whether it is your son's tunic or not?"
33 And he recognized it and said, "It is my son's tunic. A wild beast has devoured him. Without doubt Joseph is torn to pieces."
34 Then Jacob tore his clothes, put sackcloth on his waist, and mourned for his son many days.
35 And all his sons and all his daughters arose to comfort him; but he refused to be comforted, and he said, "For I shall go down into the grave to my son in mourning." Thus his father wept for him.
36 Now the Midianites had sold him in Egypt to Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh and captain of the guard.

New King James Version®, Copyright © 1982, Thomas Nelson, Inc. All rights reserved.

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01 Genesis - 2009

We've all been told that we look like someone else. Often members of the same family carry a strong resemblance to one another. Joseph reminds us of someone else: Jesus. As we explore their similarities, we'll be challenged with two crucial questions. How much do we resemble Jesus Christ? Do we look like our Heavenly Father?

The book of Genesis is rich with theology including creation, the fall of man, and justification by grace through faith. Genesis, the book of beginnings, provides foundational truths from which we can learn who God is and how He operates in the lives of His people.

In this study of Genesis, Pastor Skip Heitzig presents an in-depth examination and fresh perspective of familiar stories like the creation, Adam & Eve, Noah and the Flood, the call of Abraham, and Sodom and Gomorrah. This series offers solid information to equip believers with truth in today's battle against the lies of evolution, the basic goodness of man, and a "fairy tale" approach to the Bible.

FREE - Download Entire Series (MP3) (Help) | Buy series

Detailed Notes

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Joseph reminds us of someone else: Jesus. In the final division of Genesis, chapters 37-50, Joseph is the central focus of attention. More chapters are devoted to him than are devoted to Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, or anyone else.  If you compare these fourteen chapters to the first eleven chapters of origin in Genesis, (including creation, the fall, Noah & the Flood, etc.) more is recorded about Joseph. Joseph is almost flawless. Not one flaw is recorded in the Bible. He is pure in heart, unlike his father. Some have counted over 100 ways that Joseph is like Jesus. 

  1. Joseph Was Uniquely Loved by His Father (Genesis 37:1-3)
    1. His father made him a tunic of many colors
      1. Honored him
      2. Gave him authority
      3. Some commentators say it was a seamless robe
    2. Jesus
      1. This is My beloved Son - Matthew 3:17
      2. All authority in heaven and earth – Matthew 28:18
      3. His garment was without seam – John 19:23
  2. Joseph Was Hated by His Brothers (Genesis 37:4)
    1. Joseph's brothers hated him
    2. Jesus
      1. The common people heard Him gladly – Mark 12:37
      2. Religious leaders were jealous and hated him
      3. False witnesses were brought in with accusations
      4. They demanded His Blood
  3. Joseph Was Sold for Pieces of Silver (Genesis 37:28)
    1. His own brothers sold Joseph to the Midianite traders
      1. 12 brothers, closest to him didn't understand
      2. Sold for 20 shekels
    2. Jesus
      1. Commanded great crowds of people
      2. Those closest were his 12 disciples
      3. Sold for 30 pieces of silver
  4. Joseph Was Falsely Accused (Genesis 39)
    1. Potiphar's wife falsely accused Joseph of rape
    2. Falsely accused for crimes He did not commit
      1. Perverts the nation
      2. Forbids people to pay taxes
  5. Joseph suffered Alongside of Two Others (Genesis 40)
    1. Joseph providentially placed with two criminals
      1. Butler (went free)
      2. Baker (died)
    2. Jesus crucified between two criminals
      1. One blasphemed and died spiritually
      2. One confessed and was forgiven
  6. Joseph Was Dead to His Father then Appeared Alive (Genesis 37:34)
    1. Jacob tore his clothes and mourned for his son
      1. Believed he was dead for many years
      2. When brothers come clean, Jacob finds out Joseph is alive
    2. Jesus
      1. Died on the cross
      2. Rose from the dead – Acts 3: 15
  7. Joseph Was in Charge of Everything (Genesis 37:5-8)
    1. Joseph becomes the prime minister of Egypt
      If anyone wanted food or grain, had to get it from Joseph
    2. The father has committed everything into the hands of the Son
      Jesus said, "I am the Bread of Life" – John 6:35
  8. Men Had to Bow in Joseph's Presence
    1. Everyone humbly bowed down. (Genesis 37:9; Genesis 42; Genesis 47-48)
      1. His brothers
      2. His mother and father
    2. At the knee of Jesus every knee should bow and every tongue confess that Jesus is Lord – Philippians 2:10

These testify of the evidence of the fingerprint of the Holy Spirit on the pages of Scripture. We have the very words of God. The whole Bible is filled with Jesus. When on the road to Emmaus after the resurrection, Jesus began in Genesis and the prophets and expounded all the scriptures, the things concerning Himself–Luke 24:44-49.

Joseph looks a lot like Jesus. Do you? Is there a family resemblance? Can people tell you are a child of God? Jesus is the light of the world; he said we are the light of the world. We reflect Jesus' light as the moon reflects the sunlight.

Cross References: Matthew 3:17; Matthew 28:18; Mark 12:37; Luke 24:44-49; John 6:35; John 19:23; Acts 3:15; Philippians 2:10

Topic: Joseph

Keywords: Joseph, types of Christ, foreshadowing

Transcript

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One of our pastors on staff, Ken Riley was visiting his dad in Las Vegas this week and he sent me a picture of his dad sitting on an old Harley Davidson. I showed it to my wife and my son because they had to do a double take when they saw Kenny's dad, it looked--well, in the small picture, it look just like Kenny. Because it was the same cut of features and face and style of hair, but of course, older than Kenny. I'm not saying Kenny looks as old as his dad but I knew I was looking at Ken Riley thirty years from now. He just resembles so much his pops.



Now, this week I was with my son out at a golf course just shooting a bucket of balls and somebody next to me on that driving range said to me, "Todd? Todd, is that you?" Well, and it wasn't Todd, it was me. So I looked up and I said, "No, I'm sorry, I'm not Todd." He goes, "Oh, you look like Todd," whoever Todd was or is. But you've all have that happened were somebody said you look like or you remind me of someone, somebody else or I mistook you for somebody else. That is the impression we get as we move into Chapter 37 all the way through Chapter 50 as we're reading the story of Joseph. He reminds us of somebody else and it's not Abraham and it's not Isaac and it's not his dad Jacob. When we read about Joseph, he reminds us of Jesus. Very, very similar to Christ as all point out a few of those things in just a moment.



In Chapter 37, we are moving into the final division of the book of Genesis. The next fourteen chapters, including this one, is that final division and the central focus of attention is on one person and that one person is Joseph. It's quite remarkable that 14 chapters of the first book of the Bible are devoted to one single unique personality. Think about it this way. There is more space devoted to Joseph than there is to Abraham, than there is to Jacob, than there is to Isaac or any other person that we find, 14 chapters.



If you were to compare these 14 chapters with the first 11 chapters and if you remember Genesis 1-11, they're significant chapters, they're chapter of origin we would call them. The story of creation, the story of the fall of men, the stories of Noah and his family, the story of the great world wide flood, the post-diluvian era, the table of nations in chapter 10, the tower of Babel in chapter 11. All of those incredible stories put together don't even match the real state given to one single person.



Now, what is Joseph like? In a word, I'll give you one word. He's different. And I know the saying, like father like son, but in this case, it didn't work. Because as you look at Joseph, he is almost flawless. Did you know that there is one bad, evil, malicious, wrong thing said of Joseph in all of the Bible. As a human being, he's nearly flawless. He is different from his dad. He is what the Bible would call pure in heart. Not like dad who was manipulative and conniving of heart, Joseph was pure of heart. Many commentator, researchers in looking at the life of Joseph have come up with many ways in which Joseph is like Jesus. Some accounted over a hundred different ways. Time prevents us from doing that tonight. Others have counted 50. Time prevents us from doing that tonight.



But I want to show you a few ways in which Jesus Christ in Chapter 37 and out of Chapter 37 is like Christ. Now, we have been for 27 weeks going through the book of Genesis. 27 weeks. This is, I think, week 28 or something like that. And we have gone in depth. This is not the Bible from 30,000 feet, this is the Bible from three feet. We're driving through Genesis and taking frequent stops and side trips to see what's down the alleys. But now that we come to Chapter 37 and now that it is communion night, and we'd like to do this once a month. I thought it was more appropriate to give you more of a devotional and a summary of Joseph's life rather than a verse-by-verse through the entire chapter, Chapter 37, so that next time, we can go through it in our normal way and from a different angle.



Well, let me give you a few ways in which Joseph looks a lot like Jesus. Number one, Joseph was uniquely loved by his father. That's the first thing we learn about him when his story unfolds in Chapter 37. Now, Jacob dwelt in the land where his father was a strange, in the land of Canaan. This is the history of Jacob. Joseph being 17 years old was feeding the flock with his brothers. And the lad was with the sons of Bilha and the sons of Zilpah, his father's wives, and Joseph brought a bad report of them to his father. Now, Israel loved Joseph more than all his children because he was the son of his old age and he made him a tunic of many colors.



So the first thing we're told about the relationship between dad and son is the unique love that his father had for his son. He made him a tunic, a tunic of many colors was thought to be a coat or a distinguishing piece of garment that honored him or gave him authority. When Jesus first arrives on the scene at the Jordan River to be baptized by John the Baptist, a voice comes from heaven, from the father. Remember what it said? "This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased." And if indeed this tunic was a symbol of authority. Well, again, that reminds us of Jesus who in Matthew 28 said, "All authority is given to me in heaven and on earth." Some, and I'm not quit sure I didn't do enough digging in the sources, but some believe that the translation of this tunic of many colors could be best rendered seamless rather that variegated or many colors, seamless. And when I read that, I thought exactly of what John said when Jesus was crucified and they were auctioning off or throwing dice gambling for his robe, his tunic, which was called a robe without seems sown from top to bottom in one piece. At any rate, that's the first mark. Joseph was uniquely loved by his father.



Here's the second way Joseph looks lie Jesus. Joseph was maliciously hated by his bothers. That follows with this unique love in Chapter 37, again, verse four. But when his brothers saw that their father loved him more than all his brothers, they hated him and could not speak peaceably to him. He was hated and the hatred grows through the chapter until the inevitable happens as he is sold into slavery and a lie goes back to his dad about how he was killed out in the filed. Well, that also, is a lot like Jesus. He was hated. He came into his own. His own did not receive him.



The Bible says when Jesus would speak, that the common people heard him gladly. They loved hearing him. He made sense to them. He was so different than the normal religious leaders who spoke in sanctuary tones, in very condemning manner. Jesus was a breath of fresh air. Because they saw that the common people were hearing Jesus gladly, that fomented a sort of envy and jealousy from the religious leaders toward Jesus and that grew and that grew and that grew until when Jesus stands before the Sanhedrin at his trial, they have to bring in false witnesses, to make up things about him, lies about him. And when Barabas was offered to the crowed so that Jesus could be let go, they said about Jesus, "Crucify him! Crucify him!" He was hated. So uniquely loved by his father, Joseph was maliciously hated by his brother.



Number three. He was unjustly sold for twenty pieces of silver. Joseph was. If you go over to verse 28:37. We'll begin a few verse back verse 26. So Judah said to his brothers, "What profit is there if we kill our brother and conceal his blood? Come let us sell him to the Ishmeelites and let not our hand be upon him for he is our brother and our flesh." Like they're being nice. And his brothers listened. Then the Midianite traders passed by, so the brothers pulled Joseph up, lifted him out of the pit and sold him to the Ishmeelites for 20 shackles of silver and they took Joseph to Egypt.



When Jesus was on the earth, there were lots of people around him. As his ministry of three and a half years went on and on, he was very controversial. But nonetheless, he commanded great crowds of people who are very interested in him as we have seen on Sunday morning in John Chapter 6, because of His miracles. But though even surrounded by lots of people, the closest to him were his disciples. Just like for Joseph, the closes to him were his own brothers. There were 12 of these boys, 13 if you count Benjamin. So imagine having 12 brothers around you. Jesus had twelve of his brothers, his disciples around him. Those closest to him, many times didn't understand and one of those who were closest to him, Judas, sold Jesus into the hands of the Romans for 30 pieces of silver. It's very similar. This is 20 shackles. With Jesus it says 30 pieces. Uniquely loved by his father, hated by his brothers, sold for 20 pieces of silver.



Number four. He was accused, falsely accused for crimes he did not commit. Joseph didn't do what he was accused of. As we go on later on in our story, Chapter 39, he's taken to Egypt, he's in Potiphar's house, and I'm fast forwarding the story. He becomes one of the servants of Mr. Potiphar. One of the princes of Egypt.



He is away at the office almost everyday, his wife Mrs. Potiphar was a very lonely desperate housewife. Joseph was a young handsome single man. And you know the story already, how Mrs. Potiphar came on to Joseph, "Come on Joey baby. Nobody is looking. You and I, man, come on!" And you may remember that Joseph said with integrity, "Nobody, physically, humanly might be looking but God is looking. How could I do this wickedness and sin against God?" At that point, she screams, she cries out and she accuses Joseph of being a rapist. A false accusation which lands him a stay in the Egyptian prison. Very similar to Jesus, falsely accuse for crimes he did not commit. And once again, as I mentioned, before the Sanhedrin, they had to come up with false witnesses to bring in false accusations. And you know what they said about him? They said, "This man perverts the nation." They said that about Jesus, "This man perverts the nation and forbids people to pay taxes to Caesar." They said that because Jesus said, "Render under Caesar the things that are Caesar's, but render under God that things that are God's." False accusations.



Number four. Accused falsely. Number five. Joseph was providentially placed next to two other criminals. Chapter 40, when he's put in prison, it says that there were two other man. A chief butler of Egypt and the chief baker who were placed in the same cell next to Joseph, two criminals next to Joseph during his confinement. Now, that rings a bell. That brings us to the cross, whereas Isaiah predicted and as the Gospels declare, Jesus was crucified between two criminals. One on the right, the bible says, and one on the left, Luke Chapter 23.



It's also interesting that when Joseph was in prison, one of those other prisoners was set free and exulted and the other one was killed. I find that fascinating because the two that were next to Jesus, one on the right and one on the left, one mocked Jesus, blasphemed Jesus and died in his sin eternally separated from God. The other humbly cried out, "Lord, remember me when you come in to your kingdom." And Jesus said, "Surely, I say to you, today, you will be with me in paradise." Spiritually one died, spiritually one lived.



There is a sixth way in which Joseph looks like Jesus. Joseph was seemingly dead to his father before he appears alive sometime later in Chapter 37. If you go down to verse 32, it says, they sent the tunic. Now, they took Joseph's favored status clothing dipped it in animals blood, said it was Josephs blood, and they brought it to their father and they said, "We found this." Liars. Do you know whether it is your son's tunic or not? Leading question. And he recognized it and said, "It is my son's tunic." "A wild beast has devoured him." Without doubt, Joseph is torn in pieces then Jacob tore his clothes, put sack cloth on his waist and morn for his son many days.



For years, his father thought he was dead. Until Chapter 45, when the boys come back from Egypt needing to get grain, Joseph reveals himself to them and he goes, "Go tell my father I'm alive." Well, they have to because they won't be able to get their son Benjamin back unless they do it. So they come clean with dad and they say, "Your son Joseph lives." The Bible says, when Jacob heard that, his heart stood still. It's like... he couldn't believe it. That which was dead is now alive. How could that possible be. And it was uncovered how it could be. But Joseph was dead to his father for a period of time and then revealed to be alive. As Jesus died on the cross, was buried, rose from the dead, Peter in Acts Chapter 3 says to the people gathered in Jerusalem, "You killed the prince of life, but God raised him up from the dead."



The seventh way in which Joseph is like Jesus or looks like Jesus is that Joseph rightfully was in charge of everything. As the story in Genesis unfolds, he becomes the prime minister of Egypt and he's in charge of everything. He pulls the string effectively. He works in proxy for the king of Egypt himself. He rightfully is in charge of everything. Now, there's a hint of this, if you go back to Chapter 37 toward the beginning. In verse five, it says Joseph had a dream, and again, we'll cover this more in depth later, and he told it to his brothers and they hated him even more. So he said to them, "Please hear this dream which I have dreamed. There we were binding sheaves in the field then behold my sheaf arose also and stood upright, indeed your sheaves stood all around and bowed down to my sheaf." Of course, they wouldn't like to hear that dream. But that was prophetic of what would happen. He would become in charge effectively, rightfully, he became in charge of everything and everyone. If anybody in Egypt wanted to eat food or get grain, the one who his in charge of doling out percentage of grain was Joseph, in charge of everything. Jesus said, "The father has committed everything into the hands of the son." Jesus is rightfully in charge of everyone and everything as well. And as we have been studying, Jesus said, "I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never hunger. Whoever believes in me will never thirst." Joseph looks a lot like Jesus.



Number eight, and finally, I'll close with number eight since it tends to be the number of new beginnings and it's probably enough time said and spent. Is that with Joseph, everyone humbly bowed down to him, everyone humbly bowed down to Joseph. As the story goes on in Chapter 37 of these dreams that he tells his brothers. In verse nine, he says he dreams still another dream and he told it to his brothers. Now, you think he get a clue by this time. And he said, " Look, I've dreamed another dream. And this time the sun, the moon and the eleven stars bowed down to me, and not just your sheaves, but twelve plus two." Now watch. His father gets the point and will interpret the dream. So he told it to his father and his brothers. And his father rebuked him and said, "What is this dream that you have dreamed? Shall your mother and I and your brothers indeed come to bow down to the earth before you?"



Well, that's exactly what happened. In Chapter 42 and here's the text that says, Joseph's brothers, when they saw the prime minister of Egypt, not knowing it was Joseph, bowed down to the ground with their face to the ground before Joseph. In Chapter 47 and 48 when Jacob sees him, he bows down, his face down to the ground same language. "So your brothers and I bow down?" "Uh-huh, all you are going to bow down." That's why I say, Joseph looks a lot like Jesus, Philippians 2:10 that at the name of Jesus, every knee should bow, every tongue should confess, that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father.



So Joseph looks a lot like Jesus. Now, why are we going through this and why do we actually discover this? I've only covered eight of the very many ways in which Joseph looks a lot like Jesus. Simply to show you what you find a lot in the scripture and that is the evidence of the fingerprint, so to speak, of the Holy Spirit and the Holy Writ in the scripture itself, in the superintending of the writing of the text so that we have the very words of God given to us. The whole Bible is filled with Jesus, the whole Bible. That's why we study the Old Testament. I've been asked, "Why do you study the Old Testament and the New Testament? Why don't you just study the New Testament?" Well, because Jesus said to those religious leaders of his day, "Search the scriptures, for in them, you think that you have eternal life, but these are they which testify of me." But even Genesis, even Leviticus, and Exodus and Numbers and Deuteronomy, the Torah, the works of Moses. Oh, yes! Because you see, after Jesus rose from the dead and he was walking along the road and there were those two disciples who were despondent and they said, "Man, we can't believed what's happened. This Jesus guy whom we believed died and he spoke something about a resurrection and I don't really know what that about." And Jesus said "Oh, slow of heart to believe all that the prophet has spoken. Ought not Christ to have suffered and entered into his glory." Now, listen to this, it says, "And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded to them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself."



He went back to Genesis. He took the writings of Moses and the prophets and he showed how one typifies him and another predicts him and this one was symbolic of him. Wouldn't you have loved to be in on that Bible study? If ever there was a time I wish somebody would have recorded that or put it on CD or tape or even a reel-to-reel. It was that prophetic Bible study, post resurrection of Christ and those on the way to. Joseph looks a lot like Jesus. Here's the follow up question. How much do you look like Jesus? Is there a family resemblance? Can people tell that you're a child of God? All my son's life, he had heard, "You look like your dad." But if somebody could say, "You know what. I see enough of God in you that you remind me of the Heavenly Father or you remind me of Jesus." What a compliment. How much do we look like him? How much of Jesus values do we share? I think one of the things that teeters us to those values is what we're doing tonight than what we do once a month, taking the Lord 's Supper. It's the foundation, it's the rudimentary foundation of our faith, his broken body, his shed blood did it all.



One of the things that Jesus said about himself is, "I am the light of the world. I am the light of the world." But he said something else. He said, "You are the light of the world. As long as I am in the world I am the light of the world." But he said to his disciples, "You are the light of the world." How much do you reflect his light? When you have a full moon, you get a good idea of how bright the sun shines on the moon and reflects--that's just a reflection, it's not the moons light, the moon just reflects the sunlight and comes down to us quarter million miles away at a 186,000 miles per second using the glory of the sun reflected in the moon. Can people see the glory of the recent Christ reflected in us?



Now, at the communion table, you notice something burning with wax dripping all over it. It's something special and I wanted to display it tonight. It's a menorah. It was purchased. I bought it in Jerusalem from an antiquities dealer in Jerusalem. I actually saw it two years ago and I said, "Well, I'll think about it." And I gave him business card and he taped it to it. And when I was in his store a couple moths back, two years after that time, my card was still attached to that menorah. So I thought, "Okay, I should just pick it up and not doodle anymore." So I purchased it.



But it's a special menorah for a couple of reasons. Number one is the shape. The shape of this menorah is probably almost exactly what the shape of the menorah in the temple was like that was destroyed in 70 A.D. Much smaller scale and of course this being brass as opposed to gold, but the same shape. And the reason I say that is because the only known accurate relief or depiction we have of the menorah of the temple at Jesus time is found in Rome on a relief of what's called the Arch of Titus, the triumphal Arch after Titus sat Jerusalem and brought back some of the remnants of the temple. And shown on there are they are carrying with them the menorah and it's shaped with the three steps and the dimensions are identical to this one.



It is a symbol of the modern state of Israel but it was a symbol in the tabernacle and then the temple of the presence of God. There was only one source of light in the tabernacle in the temple, and that was the menorah. And no doubt, their minds went to that when Jesus said, "I am the light of the world." They would have thought of the light in the most holy place. But also, it's special because it's an antique menorah. This wasn't made within a couple of years. This was made over a hundred or two hundred years ago. It's from a synagogue in a very special Galilean town called Zefat or transliterated into English Safed. And besides having a lot of other interesting things attached to that, Safed was the city at the time of Jesus that could be seen from anywhere around the ring of the shores of Galilean on the lake because it was the city set up on a hill. And Jesus pointed to that city and said, "A city that is set upon a hill cannot be hidden, neither do men light a lamp and put it under a bushel, but they put it up to give light to all that are in the house. Let your light shine before men that they may see your good works and glorify your father which is in heaven. There were no other cities that was set up on a hill and it still are in that Galilean region, like Zefat, that ancient town.



So Jesus was probably referring to that town and that it is where the menorah came from and when I found out its history, I thought that so significant. It's such a great living illustration of what the lord wants us to be, reflectors of his glory of his light. Wherever we go, wherever we work, whatever family system you're in, whatever story you shop in, whatever school you go to, whatever neighborhood you live in, turn on the light from time to time, let people know the glory of the living Christ.

Additional Messages in this Series

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9/23/2009
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Genesis 1
Genesis 1
Skip Heitzig
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The book of Genesis is foundational to the rest of the Scriptures. What a person believes about creation influences their view of the entire Bible. In this verse by verse examination of Genesis chapter 1 we'll uncover the origins of the universe and gain a greater appreciation of God's power, wisdom and care. Although many questions about the specifics of creation remain unanswered, we can rest assured that "In the beginning God."
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9/30/2009
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Genesis 1:24-2:25
Genesis 1:24-2:25
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Mankind is confused about the origin of man. Sadly, many of the world's most intelligent minds embrace the lie of evolution. But man did not accidentally evolve from primordial soup. We are God's crowning creation, a result of His intricate design.
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10/7/2009
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Genesis 3
Genesis 3
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The lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the boastful pride of life are the oldest tricks in the book. Just as Satan deceived Eve into believing God was holding out on her, we too can be tempted to believe that what God has forbidden is the key to our fulfillment. Can God be trusted? In this message we learn that while the consequences of disobedience are disastrous, the Lord has a plan for our redemption.
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10/14/2009
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Genesis 4-5
Genesis 4-5
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Though death was not God's original plan for His creation, through the sin of Adam, death entered the entire human race and has reigned ever since. As we explore the 1500 years of history covered in Chapters 5 and 6 of Genesis, the fruit of sin is evident. We'll discover that from the murder of Abel through the descendants of Cain, love of self ruled in the hearts of men, but those in Christ must rule over sin and let the love of God be our motivation.
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10/21/2009
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Genesis 6
Genesis 6
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When Jesus told His disciples about His second coming, He said, "But as the days of Noah were, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be." In this message we'll examine the world conditions at the time of the flood and see how the world has fallen back to similar depravity. We'll also uncover exciting parallels between God's plan of salvation of Noah through the flood and His plan to deliver His children from the coming tribulation.
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10/28/2009
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Genesis 7-8
Genesis 7-8
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After 120 years of diligent, obedient preparation for the coming deluge, Noah received God's invitation to board the ark. It must have been a difficult, yet exciting time for Noah and his family; the animals entered the enormous ship, the door was closed behind them, and the rain began to fall. Soon, floodwaters covered the entire planet, and eight souls and the animals on the ark were all that remained. Why is it important to understand the worldwide nature of the flood? How should this ancient cataclysm affect our lives and our view of the coming judgment?
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11/11/2009
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Genesis 9
Genesis 9
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Man is the crown of creation made in the image of God, but from the time of creation through the flood mankind was growing more and more corrupt. When Noah and his family stepped off the ark, God established human government and delivered four directives so that as society grew, it could function smoothly.
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11/18/2009
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Genesis 10-11
Genesis 10-11
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The listing of genealogies recorded in scripture is, at times, difficult. What is the significance of such a detailed account? How are we to apply this information to our lives? Through this meticulous record of the descendants of Noah, God demonstrates His interest in people, His faithfulness to His promise, and His isolation of the people group through whom Messiah would come.
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1/6/2010
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Genesis 12
Genesis 12
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The Bible presents Abraham is our example of justification by faith. Although his life was not easy and his walk was not perfect, Scripture refers to him as a friend of God. Let's take a look at the testimony and testing of Abram and learn important lessons about God's faithfulness in the lives of His people.
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1/13/2010
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Genesis 13-14
Genesis 13-14
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All of us make mistakes; we falter and fail in our relationships with the Lord and with others. Abram was no different, but by God's mercy he is the Father of them that believe. As we examine his life and the lives of those around him, we'll see that they encountered trials and temptations not so different from our own. Let's take a look at the differences between godly Abram and worldly Lot, and avoid the hazards of flirting with temptation.
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1/27/2010
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Genesis 15
Genesis 15
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The nation of Israel is the avenue though which the Lord has blessed the world with the Messiah. God's promise to Abram guarantees their ownership of the land, and provides a picture of His divine accomplishment, based on God's work alone. Join us as we uncover the doctrine of justification by faith from our text in Genesis 15.
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2/3/2010
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Genesis 16-17
Genesis 16-17
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It's a common problem; trusting our feelings rather than trusting the Lord. But feelings are misleading, and as we learn from Abram and Sarai, trying to help God fulfill His promises can be costly. Their spiritual detour from the will of God produced ramifications we are experiencing today. God is faithful however to fulfill His promises, His plan is perfect, and His will will be accomplished.
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2/10/2010
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Genesis 18
Genesis 18
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Abraham experienced trials and failures and yet the Bible refers to him as the friend of God. As we examine Genesis 18 we'll witness Abraham's encounter with three heavenly visitors and gain further insight into his relationship with the Lord. Let's explore the privileges and expectations of those who desire a friendship with God as we study the life of Abraham.
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2/17/2010
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Genesis 19
Genesis 19
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The topic of God's judgment makes some people squirm. Believing that God is loving, gracious, merciful and kind often comes easier than viewing Him as Judge. As we investigate the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah we'll come to terms with the necessity of His judgment. We'll also be reminded that God is in the business of redemption, and that He dealt with the sin of those who believe at the cross of Calvary.
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2/24/2010
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Genesis 20:1-21:8
Genesis 20:1-21:8
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As believers we are new creations in Christ, however, we still carry around our old nature; the battle between the spirit and the flesh is a struggle for all of us. As we consider the life of Abraham, we see him fall once again into a familiar sin. The consequences of his choices are damaging, hurting others and ruining his testimony before unbelievers. But as we'll see in our text, God is faithful, and causes all things to work together for good for those who love Him and who are called according to His purpose.
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3/3/2010
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Genesis 21:9-22:14
Genesis 21:9-22:14
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It can be challenging for us to line up our behavior with the teachings of Scripture. Biblical principles are often contrary to our human nature, and obedience can be uncomfortable. As we examine the profound testing of Abraham's faith, we must ask ourselves, "Am I willing to do what is difficult?" As we walk in obedience to the Lord, our faith is developed and our relationship with Him is strengthened.
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3/10/2010
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Genesis 22:15-23:20
Genesis 22:15-23:20
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Death is a fact of life; the statistics show that every one of us will die; the ratio is 1:1. Let's consider the suffering and sorrow Abraham endured through the near sacrifice of his son Isaac and the death of his wife Sarah. We'll discover that the path of sorrow can also be the road to deeper fellowship with the Lord.
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3/17/2010
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Genesis 24
Genesis 24
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In most parts of the world, the methods of dating and marriage have changed dramatically over the past 4000 years. Arranged marriages, family involvement and dowries are foreign to our culture where online dating is becoming the norm. As we consider the way Isaac and Rebekah were brought together, we will discover timeless principles to apply to the modern dating game. We'll also uncover a deeper spiritual message as we examine the foundations of their relationship.
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3/24/2010
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Genesis 25
Genesis 25
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It's been said, "He who dies with the most toys still dies;" a clever saying with profound insight.  Abraham died full, not merely in quantity of years and physical blessings, but in satisfaction and relationship with the Lord. As we take a look at his final years and the legacy he left behind, we'll be reminded of what's really important in life, and be challenged to consider our own priorities and our spiritual birthright.
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3/31/2010
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Genesis 26
Genesis 26
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As Isaac takes center stage in our study through the book of Genesis, we'll see that it's not always best to follow in our earthly father's footsteps. Partial obedience and compromising truth rear their heads in a plot reminiscent of Abraham's struggles. Join us as we peek into the life of Isaac and get another glimpse of our God who is rich in mercy and faithful to his promises.
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4/14/2010
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Genesis 27
Genesis 27
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Isaac's family was plagued by distrust and scheming, but a dysfunctional family is no match for the sovereign hand of God. In spite of the continuing battle between Jacob and Esau, and the deceptive habits that have been passed down for generations, the Lord's plan will not be thwarted. His ways are not our ways, and He causes all things to work together for good for those who love Him, who are called according to His purpose.
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4/21/2010
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Genesis 28-29
Genesis 28-29
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Grace cannot be earned; as AW Tozer said, "As mercy is God's goodness confronting human misery and guilt, so grace is His goodness directed toward human debt and demerit." Though Jacob is not deserving of blessing, the grace of God was poured into his life. Though we may reap what we sow, God's grace is sufficient for us.
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5/19/2010
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Genesis 30
Genesis 30
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God uses the foolish things of the world to confound the wise. Out of a dysfunctional family, and an oppressive workplace the Lord will ultimately accomplish His will. Let's take a look at Jacob's superstitious relatives and recognize God's powerful work in the midst of human failure.
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5/26/2010
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Genesis 31
Genesis 31
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How can we know God's will for our lives? Genesis 31 offers beautiful lessons for the child of God. We'll see God confirm His will to Jacob through circumstances and His Word as he packs up his family and leaves Padan Adam to head home.
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6/2/2010
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Genesis 32-33
Genesis 32-33
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During the difficult days following 9-11, our country experienced a deeper sense of community and spiritual renewal. The tragedy served as a wakeup call; in spite of our prosperity, we are not immune to pain. Often, the Lord gets a hold of us in the midst of suffering; we may endure steady adversity so that we always depend on Him. Let's look again at the life of Jacob as he comes to another turning point on his spiritual journey where he learns that when he is weak, he is made strong.
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7/7/2010
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Genesis 34
Genesis 34
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We take another look at the life of Jacob in Genesis 34 where the effects of his flaws become glaringly apparent. Jacob's passive parenting and dysfunctional family result in an ungodly reaction to the rape of his daughter, Dinah. Let's examine profound spiritual truths, learn important principles to apply to our own families, and renew our hope in the grace of God.
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7/14/2010
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Genesis 35-36
Genesis 35-36
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It's been said, "It's always darkest before the dawn." On the heels of a dark period in Jacob's life, the Lord works in his heart to bring about revival. As we dive into our text, we'll see that while Jacob lingered far away from God for a time, he renews his commitment to the God of second chances.
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8/4/2010
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Genesis 37:1-38:10
Genesis 37:1-38:10
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Joseph takes center stage in our study through the book of Genesis. His father's preferential treatment backfires and this favorite son ends up in the bottom of a cistern, and then sold into slavery. Let's take a closer look at God's providential hand and tuck away some important events that we'll pull out later as evidence of His faithfulness.
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8/11/2010
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Genesis 38:9-39:23
Genesis 38:9-39:23
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The contrast between Joseph and his brothers is great. Nothing bad is recorded about Joseph, but his brothers' lives are a mess. Joseph was faithful; his brothers were failures. Joseph had rock solid integrity; his brothers practiced wretched morality. Yet in the midst of it all, the Holy Spirit worked behind the scenes, using the most unlikely people to bring the Messiah into the world.
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9/1/2010
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Genesis 40-41
Genesis 40-41
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The account of Joseph's life has been a riches-to-rags tale thus far. While Joseph remains faithful in the midst of trials, the sovereign hand of God is fulfilling His purpose in Joseph's heart and in the world. Let's take a look at the dreamer of dreams as he takes his eyes off his circumstances and places them squarely on the Lord.
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9/8/2010
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Genesis 42
Genesis 42
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What things does God work together for good in the lives of those who love Him? Sold into slavery, falsely accused, forgotten in prison– these are troubling events in the life of Joseph. As we approach this text, we'll see the sovereign hand of God at work, fulfilling His promise and truly working all things together for good in the life of Joseph.
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9/15/2010
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Genesis 43-44:17
Genesis 43:1-44:17
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Love isn't always easy. The natural response to difficult people may be retaliation. After cruel treatment by his brothers, Joseph is placed in a powerful position--their fate is in his hands; however, rather than payback, Joseph chooses pardon. He sets a wonderful example for us of supernatural love for unlovely people.
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9/22/2010
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Genesis 44:18-45:28
Genesis 44:18-45:28
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How do you respond in the face of adversity? Do you see life's difficulties through the filter of God's sovereignty? Joseph had been sold into slavery, forgotten in prison, and falsely accused. When faced with the brothers who got him into this mess, rather than revenge, Joseph chose the high road of forgiveness. Let's uncover how his vertical relationship with the Lord equipped him to restore his horizontal relationships with his brothers.
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9/29/2010
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Genesis 46-47
Genesis 46-47
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Perspective can be everything. Do you view life's challenges and success through the lens of God's sovereignty? Joseph spent twenty-two years in Egypt trusting in God's faithfulness. As we witness the reunion of Joseph and Jacob, we should remember that the God who sees all things also has a perfect plan for you and me.
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10/6/2010
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Genesis 48:1-49:12
Genesis 48:1-49:12
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It's a deathbed scene; the end of Jacob's life is drawing near and there are things he wants to set in order. While the law of the firstborn requires the oldest son to receive a double portion, Jacob chooses to honor the younger grandson, Ephraim. We'll learn why, and how that is relevant to our own lives in this study from Genesis.
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10/20/2010
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Genesis 49-50
Genesis 49-50
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As the book of beginnings comes to a close we'll witness Jacob's final declaration of blessing and admonition toward his sons, his death, and his burial in Canaan. Let's glimpse into his faith, consider his testimony, and learn from his example.
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11/10/2010
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Genesis Q & A
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Why did God place the tree of the knowledge of good and evil in Garden of Eden? Did dinosaurs and man co-exist? Was the flood local or global? These are some of the questions Pastor Skip addresses in our recap of the book of Genesis. Let's explore the answers to these common concerns and gain a deeper understanding of God's plan for mankind.
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There are 37 additional messages in this series.