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Genesis 48:1-49:33

Jacob said to Joseph, "The Sovereign God appeared to me at Luz in the land of Canaan and blessed me. He said to me, 'I am going to make you fruitful and will multiply you. I will make you into a group of nations, and I will give this land to your descendants as an everlasting possession.'
(Genesis 48:3-4 NET.)

I find the tenses used in this passage very interesting. Jacob states that God told him He was going to make him, not his descendents, not some group in the future, but him, Jacob/Israel, fruitful. For someone who had no knowledge of the resurrection, someone who the “Soon Coming King” would be way into the future, Jacob had an intense sense of eternity in his heart. Do we, those who come after the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ, see our off-spring, children, grandchildren and great-grand’s in the Big Picture of things as being an extension of ourselves, or do we think everything ends with us? How much of this do I truly understand? I say that I am part of something greater than myself, but do I act it and walk it? Are my actions speaking louder than my words?

I also find it interesting that Leah is buried in the land promised to Abraham, in the cave bought when the land was promised but not obtained fully. However, Rachael was buried on the road outside of Bethlehem. I’m not sure if there is any significance, I just find it interesting. Leah, the “booby” prize, the one not wanted, was the mother of both the priestly line and the kingly line, Levi and Judah. I’m not taking anything away from Joseph, but it seems that God always deals with the unwanted, the outcasts. I believe what we see in these twelve boys played out in this story is a strong reason why we are told to be careful how we judge. We, outside of the revelation of God, do not know how a story will end. It seems the ones with the “badest” reputations don’t end that way. What is that song, “It’s Not How You Start but How You Finish.” I think it is from a musical, but I can’t remember which one.

Grace and peace,
Ramona

All of proverbs 4:20-27 stood out to me today but especially 25 &26. I am also new to setting long term goals for my life and sticking to them. I pray that God gives me a clearer vision for my life and continues to guide my path.

Mike,
Regarding your request for comments on Prov 4:25-26, my sense is that the "straight" path is whatever path God wants us to travel (a path of righteousness if you will). A couple of complimentary scriptures I am reminded or are:
Mt 7:14 "narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it."; and also one of your favorite memory verses that refers to "paths":
Prov 3:5-6 "Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding. In all of your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths."

I would say that my blessings come from being in the fellowship of true Christians who do God's work everyday - I'm speaking of the Volunteers and Staff at Radiant Church who help the poor and others in need on a daily basis. I feel blessed to be in their presence and thankful that I'm able to contribute even a small amount of my time to help them in their ministry.
Proverb 4:23 Guard your heart above all else,for it determines the course of your life. Jesus heals the broken-hearted - pray for those who assist in that endeaver.

Given your in-depth look into the O.T. would you agree with the statement that knowledge of God, fear of the Lord, faith in Jesus Christ, and submission to His will all fit together to complete the picture. Having submitted to the Lord, I have concluded that I am living as a virtuous woman.

I have received some feedback on both ends, but I always love hearing more - it helps me shape my weekly Bible Studies and how I will focus the work on the women who are looking to deepen their faith.

Thank you for your insight!

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