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It's good to be talking about PRAYER once again.
Yes, we pray for a number of reasons: to praise God and to acknolwedge his presence in our lives, to ask for forgiveness to ask for discernment, to pray for ourselves and the rest of the world----that we may be all united in PEACE.
Asking is part of prayer but it should not dominate our prayer life...

The act or prayer is an act of complete sumbission to God, to be able to "silence our minds" and allow God to do the talking as we listen... or for us to talk and God listens. But it is only in the quietest, deepest moments that we're able to listen, that we become one with and in God.

I Chronicles 5 (NKJV)
Now the sons of Reuben the firstborn of Israel—he was indeed the firstborn, but because he defiled his father’s bed, his birthright was given to the sons of Joseph, the son of Israel, so that the genealogy is not listed according to the birthright;
yet Judah prevailed over his brothers, and from him came a ruler, although the birthright was Joseph’s—

The life of Reuben is an very interesting—and very tragic—illustration of what the “mind of the sinful nature (flesh) can do. He lost his birthright.

What is birthright? Note this answer from The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia

“Birthright is the right which naturally belonged to the firstborn son. Where there were more wives than one, the firstborn was the son who in point of time was born before the others, apparently whether his mother was a wife or a concubine.”

In the OT, some men had many wives. The firstborn was the first male born, whether from concubine or wife.

What were the benefits from being the first male born (the birthright)? Again, from The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia

a. “The birthright of the firstborn consisted in the first place of a double portion of what his father had to leave. This probably means that he had a double share of such property as could be divided.”

b. “The firstborn became head of the family and thus succeeded to the charge of the family property, becoming responsible for the maintenance of the younger sons, the widow or widows, and the unmarried daughters.”

c. “He also, as head, succeeded to a considerable amount of authority over the other members.”

d. “Further, he generally received the blessing, which placed him in close and favored covenant-relationship with Yahweh.”

The oldest son had:
1. double portion of property
2. became head of family after father died
3. assumed authority to rule over the family after father died
4. received spiritual blessing of close and favored covenant relationship with the Father God- Yahweh.

Finally, note this from The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia

“According to the accounts which have come down to us, all these gifts and privileges could be diverted from the firstborn son.” This could happen through sin—as in the case of Reuben as well as Esau.

THIS IS IMPORTANT: If there was firstborn with a birthright, the family had no access to God’s authority, blessing, and protection on earth. The firstborn with the birthright were essential for the entire family.

Joseph is a picture of assuming the spiritual birthright because of his obedience to his father. Yet, because he was sold in slavery, he could not perform his role of spiritual birthright—exercising physical authority as protector—over his family until he saw them in Egypt as co-ruler of Egypt.

Judah also obeyed. Because he was with the rest of the family, his spiritual obedience and faith enabled him to assume the regular practice of the authority and the blessing of the birthright over Jacob’s family.


The concepts of “firstborn” and “birthright” find their greatest and fulfilment in the NT in the Lord Jesus Christ.

Consider these verses:

Romans 8 (Amplified)
For those whom He foreknew [of whom He was aware and loved beforehand], He also destined from the beginning [foreordaining them] to be molded into the image of His Son [and share inwardly His likeness], that He might become the firstborn among many brethren.

Colossians 1 (Amplified)
[Now] He is the exact likeness of the unseen God [the visible representation of the invisible]; He is the Firstborn of all creation.
He also is the Head of [His] body, the church; seeing He is the Beginning, the Firstborn from among the dead, so that He alone in everything and in every respect might occupy the chief place [stand first and be preeminent].

Hebrews 12 (Amplified)
But rather, you have come to Mount Zion, even to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to countless multitudes of angels in festal gathering,
And to the church (assembly) of the Firstborn who are registered [as citizens] in heaven, and to the God Who is Judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous (the redeemed in heaven) who have been made perfect,

James 1 (Amplified)
And it was of His own [free] will that He gave us birth [as sons] by [His] Word of Truth, so that we should be a kind of firstfruits of His creatures [a sample of what He created to be consecrated to Himself].

Finally, I really like this verse in Romans which is excellent to meditate on.

Remember the physical children of Israel: Their access to all of the rights, protection, and authority of their father after he passed only came through the firstborn with the birthright.

We have access to all of what our Father in heaven has—only through Jesus, the Firstborn:

Romans 8 (Amplified)
The Spirit Himself [thus] testifies together with our own spirit, [assuring us] that we are children of God.
And if we are [His] children, then we are [His] heirs also: heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ [sharing His inheritance with Him]; only we must share His suffering if we are to share His glory.

NOTE that through the amazing grace of Christ, He has made us FELLOW HEIRS WITH CHRIST because Christ has graciously SHARED HIS INHERITANCE WITH US.

But this will only happen if we allow true repentance to break into our hearts so we can enter into the full spiritual inheritance that Jesus has already secured for us.

We share Christ’s authority over sin and Satan. We exercise our spiritual authority through prayer in submission to the Lord


Mike, I agree with your response and the way you handled your friend that sounded rude on your voice message. I have had opportunites when I could of and felt very justified to speak my mind. To say things out of anger and fustration. I have found that this is a very good time to pray. I've prayed away anger before and even asked God to help me handle the person that has made me angry or is difficult to deal with. When I have been obedient in responding the way He has asked me, the outcome has always been positive. Believe me, this is not always as easy as it sounds. For me anyway.

One time at work I had an issue with a rude condescending supervisor, who I felt very justified to be rude back to. Instead, when I went on my break I prayed about it. After that my anger discipated. In my prayer, God had told me to apologize,which if left up to me, would of been the last thing on my mind. After apologizing things got much better between us.

It seems we do get a little distracted in our daily lives and that we might forget about God when things are going smoothly. I don't feel that I would of understood the blessings, had I not gone through some trials. He taught me many of lifes lessons during difficult times in my life. Praise God!!!!

About what you mentioned in context with Jabez'prayer and "pray without ceasing (1 Thes 5:14-18)" I have been reading John Piper's 2004 book "When I don't desire God: How to fight for joy".p. 156. This advice to pray without ceasing comes in the midst of the "idle" provoking you, the "fainthearted" leaning on you, the "weak" depleting you. You are called to encourage and help and be patient and not return evil for evil. Whee do we get resources to love like that? The answer "rejoice always". The key to this rejoicing , this delight, which sustains the life of fruit-bearing love is "pray without ceasing" and "give thanks in all circumstances". This will make us durable and fruitful in relation to all kinds of people.

1 Chronicles 4:5-5:17

Hmmm, the following verse caught my eye and led me to do some digging,

And his wife Jehudijah bore Jered the father of Gedor, and Heber the father of Socho, and Jekuthiel the father of Zanoah. And these are the sons of Bithiah the daughter of Pharaoh, which Mered took. (1 Chronicles 4:18 KJV)

In trying to figure out who was this Bithiah the daughter of Pharaoh that so intrigued me I discovered upon looking in some commentaries that scholars believe she was the women who “drew” Moses, which means, “drawing out,” out of the Nile River. Was Pharaoh’s daughter an admirer of the Jews? It seems she not only adopted Moses as her own but in her marriage to a Jew, she must have had an understanding, or at least acquired one, of Jewish culture and history. So not only was Moses trained in all the arts of the Egyptians (Acts 7:22), he was exposed to Hebrew culture.

I know have greater respect for her because she did not try to make Moses into an Egyptian. She loved him enough to step down from her societal privileges and marry a “slave.” Funny thing though: after Moses had run away to Midian to escape from those looking to kill him after killing the Egyptian, his future wife and her sisters called him an Egyptian (Ex 2:19). Do we really know who people are or do we just think we know. How many people think Jesus was just a good man who helped people?

Grace and peace,

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