Old Testament: Genesis 46:1-47:31
Genesis 46:1-47:31 It’s Crying Time Again
God told Jacob it was OK to go to Egypt (vv. 2-3). He had told him before not to go (Gen. 26:2) but that now it was alright. God promised the nation of Israel would return but that Jacob, himself, would die in Egypt (v. 4). Jacob could be comforted that Joseph, his heir, was alive and God would keep His promise to make Jacob’s descendants into a great nation (v. 3).
Joseph wept when he saw his father again. All seventy that were in Jacob’s family at the time were together in Egypt. Joseph told his relatives not to mention that they were shepherds, they were just to say they were keepers of livestock. Egyptians didn’t like shepherds.
All of Jacob’s relatives were able to survive the famine in the land because of the blessing of God through Pharaoh and Joseph.
In Chapter 46, God told Jacob it was OK to go to Egypt (vv. 2-3). He had told him before not to go (Gen. 26:2) but that now it was alright. God promised the nation of Israel would return but that Jacob, himself, would die in Egypt (v. 4). Jacob could be comforted that Joseph, his heir, was alive and God would keep His promise to make Jacob’s descendants into a great nation (v. 3).
The names of all of Jacob’s family, except for Joseph and his sons, are listed in verses 8-25. There were 70 in all, 66 (v. 26) including Jacob, Joseph and his two sons, Manasseh, and Ephraim (v. 27, cf. Exod. 1:5; Deut. 10:22). All seventy that were in Jacob’s family at the time were together in Egypt (v. 8).
Joseph wept when he saw his father again (v. 29). Joseph told his relatives to play the fact that they were shepherds, they were just to say they were to emphasize that they were keepers of livestock. Egyptians don’t care much for shepherds (v. 4)
In Chapter 47, Pharaoh asked Jacob and the boys what they did for a living (v. 3a). They answered that they were shepherds like their ancestors before them (v. 3b). They told Pharaoh that they didn’t want to live forever in Egypt, they just wanted to hang out there for a while while the blight was taking over the land (v. 4). Pharaoh said, “Cool,” (lit. “The land of Egypt is at your disposal,” v. 6).
Pharaoh asked Jacob how long he had lived (v. 8). Jacob said the “years of [his] sojourning” were 130 but that wasn’t as long as his predecessors (v. 9). Jacob was 147 when he died (v. 28) but Abraham was 175 and Isaac was 180. Have you ever wondered how long you would sojourn? Someone, an actual stud, C.T. Studd, once said “Only one life, ’twill soon be past, only what’s done for Christ will last.” Not many of us will have 130 years to live for the Lord!
Joseph made sure his bro’s got fed (v. 12) the whole time he governed in Egypt. The famine was so severe in all the land that Joseph took livestock and seed in exchange for food (vv. 15-19).
The net result of the famine and Joseph’s rulership was that Pharaoh owned everyone and all the land except for the priests’ land (v. 22). Pharaoh gave them seed to sow and let them keep 4/5 of the proceeds for themselves to live off (vv. 20-26).
Jacob aka Israel lived in Egypt for 17 years and their numbers grew as well as their wealth (v. 27). Jacob asked Joseph, “Please don’t let me be buried in Egypt” (v. 29, 30a). He wanted to be buried with his ancestors (v. 30b). Joe said, “No worries” (v. 30c). Jacob said, “Swear it?” And Joe said, “Sure” (v. 31). Then Jacob worshipped there, leaning on his staff (cf. NIV and Heb. 11:21).
New Testament: Matthew 15:1-28
The religious leaders made fun of the disciples for not washing their hands properly. Jesus pointed out that while they weren’t keeping a tradition, the leaders were breaking the law by superseding it with one of their traditions.
Jesus quoted Isaiah (29:13) to indicate that the leaders were only yielding “lip service” to God rather than true worship.
The disciples told Jesus He was being politically incorrect. He told them that the religious leaders were “the pits.”
Peter still needed the poop on the politically incorrect stuff so Jesus gave it to him.
A Gentile mother approached Jesus to ask Him to heal her demon-possessed daughter. Jesus ignored her at first but then made her an example of how He was later going to open the kingdom to the Gentiles.
Matthew 15:1-28 The Poop On The Gentiles
The religious leaders were back hassling Jesus asking Him why His disciples didn’t wash their hands like the “tradition” said they should (vv. 1-2). It wasn’t the law, however (cf. Lev. 22:1-16) which only applied to priests, it was the religious rite of washing that the disciples ignored. Jesus countered by asking why they said it was OK to give money to the Temple when their family was lacking what they needed (vv. 3-5). Oh, burn! The religious leaders were actually breaking the law by their tradition. The disciples weren’t breaking the law, only ignoring the traditions of men. Have you ever known anyone who puts their rituals ahead of the Word of God?
Jesus quoted Isaiah (29: 13) to say that many of the Jews technically did things right but their hearts were corrupt (vv. 7-9). He was saying that the Pharisees were offering “lip service” to God but not true heart worship (vv. 8-9). In fact, He went on to say that unclean food was not the problem but unclean mouths were a problem (vv. 10 – 11).
The disciples told Jesus He wasn’t being politically correct and He was being a little more than a little offensive (vv. 12). Then, so He wouldn’t be misunderstood, He became even more offensive by saying that the blind leaders were leading blind people and they were all going to fall into a pit (v. 14)!
Peter said he still didn’t get the part about eating the blessed food (vv. 15). So Jesus became a little more explicit saying it’s not what you poop out that makes someone dirty, it was the poop that comes out of their mouths that makes them dirty (vv. 18, cf. v. 11). It’s stuff like evil thoughts, murder, adultery, fornication, theft, lying, and slander (v. 19). Washing hands has like nothing to do with anything (v. 20)!
A mother approached Jesus who had a demon-possessed daughter (v. 21). She was from Canaan and wasn’t a Jew (v. 22a). She pleaded for Jesus to heal her daughter (v. 22b). Jesus completely ignored her like “talk to the hand.” Jesus told her that if he honored her request, it would take him off mission of reaching the Jews for the kingdom (v. 24). He said he couldn’t take the “children’s food” and feed it to the “dogs” (v. 26). He meant that it wasn’t right to take blessing meant for Israel and give it to outsiders. She persisted by picking up on His metaphor, admitting she was an outsider but begged an exception in that even “dogs” get table scraps (v. 27). It worked. Her daughter was healed right at same moment (v. 28).
It can be seen that God was beginning to open the door for Gentiles to enter the kingdom since the Jews were rejecting Him. Once again Jesus is impressed by the faith of a Gentile as He was with the faith of the centurion (cf. Matt. 8:10).