Summary: Jesus saves beyond expectations of man and beyond man's ability to love one another as we see in the bible story of Abraham and Jacob.
FOR JESUS’ LOVE 10
Dr. Gale A. Ragan-Reid (August 13, 2017)
“So when they had dined, Jesus saith to Simon Peter, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my lambs. He saith to him again the second time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my sheep. He saith unto him the third time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? Peter was grieved because he said unto him the third time, Lovest thou me? And he said unto him, Lord, thou knowest all things; thou knowest that I love thee. Jesus saith unto him, Feed my sheep.” (St. John 21:15-17, King James Version [Christ’s charge to Peter]}
Greetings in the Holy Name of Jesus,
My sisters and brothers, leadership traits, thank you LORD, resonate out of the presence of Jesus, spiritually reaching out to us all---from birth to death, we hear folks say he was a great man of power, whose forefather was a man of greatness, blessedness and a nation-builder. Yes, we speak of Jacob and we speak of Abraham, of which without Abraham’s greatness, blessedness and nation-building leadership traits, indeed within himself what could Jacob’s power have accomplished in itself albeit for the glory of God. I do not want to paint a story of blissful intentions without struggle for the struggle was just as much in them as their traits of greatness, blessedness, nation-building and power for we are flesh, understandably so and woefully so, captive in ourselves fighting within ourselves the battles of our lives, the battles of all our lives for the battles of the world where the waters that Jesus spoke of within us that should be, I say it again, should be, at peace but we struggle still to deny the presence of Christ Jesus on this earth, the saving grace of Christ Jesus given to us by God---His only begotten son “…that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life” ( [John 3:16, KJV [The witness of John]). Do we deny the witness of John?
We stand before our aggressors and we stand before our challenge---to strike first or defend best, we hope and pray for the victory---we believe that the victory is ours and we reflect when the victory indeed was ours in some distant past we were superior in strategy, in support, in the strength of Jesus to fight the good fight but yet we hesitate, we wait,--so that we do not stumble and fall but there is no guarantee how matters will progress without the leadership of God, known for being a God of wrath, a God of war, a living God who man could not possibly win anything against unless he permits it---allows for a much longer-termed lesson that he gives us over to Satan to test. What did Jacob do when he faced Esau since he left---had to run away from his parents’ estate, for he took his brother Esau’s blessing from their father Isaac with the help of his mother Rebekah [Genesis 22:23, KJV]and did as his
mother said—ran to her brother, his Uncle Laban? Now, the time has come for him to face his challenge for the blessing is won but the relationship is shattered. What do you say? What can you say to a brother who you wronged?
Who wronged you in life that you did not forgive---could not forgive, have problems with forgiving the act and the person that wronged you? Yet, hate stands between you, to take both of you---take you down to the pit of death---for it is death of a relationship, death of a love, death of your presence before the one who you wronged and death of the presence of who you wronged for in every wrong there once was a right, for we stand on the goodness of God and His creation of the earth for without God.”…the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep.” [Genesis 1:2, KJV [the creation of earth]). In fellowship, is that where you are denying God, denying earth, denying Christ Jesus, probably not even standing on the face of earth but somewhere in the deepness of the darkness trying to master your own life---having convinced yourself that you are your own God—you do not need the God of Abraham---you did not need Jesus the son of God, true to your rebellious nature and true to your sinful nature. Well, sirs, I am here to tell you that you are living a lie.
Jacob could not continue to hide with his Uncle Laban for their relationship was strained for Laban kept taking which was the culture of his family. Is it not the pot calling the kettle black that Jacob’s relationship strained with Uncle Laban—for Uncle Laban kept taking his blessings, every time God blessed him with his livestock and possessions but is that not what Jacob did to his brother Esau, took his blessing---his life blessing from his father, Isaac? Now, Jacob having learned the lesson of understanding what he did even with the help of his mother for his mother was led to encourage him to betray his brother. Jacob still had to face his brother since he left his Uncle Laban who chased him down for taking his statute of his god for his Uncle Laban, his mother’s family did not worship the living God, ---the God of Abraham. So, history repeated itself, each time he left he took—this time his wife, Rachel, Uncle Laban’s daughter who he married took the statute of her family’s god unbeknownst to her father, Laban or to her husband, Jacob—probably afraid of leaving her father’s estate---Jacob’s Uncle Laban’s estate and in fear took the god that she worshipped to protect her---not understanding in all the years that her husband was with her family working—the living God he served—the God of Abraham, for Jacob had to work so many years just to marry Rachel because he had to marry her sister Leah first, the older sister as was the custom of their family before he could take Rachel for his wife. What a hard lesson to learn yet the world still practices taking one from another instead of love one for another---and they are committed to the practice, without fail and feel hurt when someone takes from them.