Summary: Like fibers in a rope that make the rope strong, faith has its fibers, too. Each fiber is a part of the whole.
The Fiber of Faith
1. A Greek and a Turk get into a car accident and it's a bad one. Both cars are totally demolished, but, amazingly, neither of them are hurt. After they crawl
out of their cars, the Greek sees the guy is wearing a T-shirt with Turkish written on it and says, "So you're a Turk. I'm a Greek. Just look at
our cars. There's nothing left, but we are unhurt. This must be a sign from heaven. This must have meant that we should meet and be friends and live together
in peace the rest of our days."
The Turk replies, "I agree with you completely. This must be a sign from above." The Greek continues, "And look at this. Here's another miracle. My car is completely demolished but this bottle of Retsina wine didn't break. Surely this means we should drink this wine and celebrate our good fortune." Then he hands the bottle to the Turk. He agrees, takes a few big swigs, and hands the bottle back to the Greek. The Greek takes the bottle, immediately puts the cap on, and hands it back to the Turk. The Turk asks, "Aren't you having any?" The Greek replies, "No...I think I'll wait for the police..." [https://www.tapatalk.com/groups/kliniki/greek-turkish-jokes-t2276.html]
2. Faith is more than superstition and looking for signs. It is based upon the revelation of God’s Word, not things that simply happen.
Main Idea: Like fibers in a rope that make the rope strong, faith has its fibers, too. Each fiber is a part of the whole.
I. Faith that Surrenders to God: Isaac Tried to Circumvent God’s Will, But Learned to SUBMIT By Faith (20). [confer with Genesis chapter 27, esp. vs. 33]
A. Reversing the rights of the firstborn: what God had said when JACOB and Esau were born (Genesis 25:23).
1. Spoken to Rebekah, Isaac’s wife, but she probably communicated it.
2. Could be why she felt responsible to make this happen?
B. Isaac FAVORED Esau, and tried to make him the heir of the Promise.
C. After he realized he had been tricked to do the right thing, he stopped fudging and SUBMITTED to God’s will by faith.
• He was speaking prophetically, as a mouthpiece for God, when he blessed Jacob. He was tricked, but he knew that God was not tricked.
D. God may DISCIPLINE us or may bring us to the end of ourselves so that we finally trust His will above our own.
• Like doubting Thomas, we may refuse to take the word of others, even others who have proven their credibility. We do the same thing with God. Pride.
• Like submitting to authority only when you agree with the authority, or respecting president only if you agree. That’s not respect/submission.
II. Faith That Observes What God is Doing: Jacob Broke With Custom and ELEVATED One Son, Bestowing Upon Joseph’s Sons Tribal Status (21).
[confer with Genesis 48:5, 8-22]
A. Technically, Jacob was the first JEW; his name was changed to Israel.
1. He passed a blessing was also inspired and he was serving as a prophet of God, thus he predicted, what each of his sons tribes would be like; Judah would be the lion, and from that tribe the Messiah would come.
2. The writer to the Hebrews focuses only upon the blessing he gave to Joseph.
B. Reuben was his firstborn, but Reuben DISGRACED the family name
I Chronicles 5:1, “The sons of Reuben the firstborn of Israel (for he was the firstborn, but because he defiled his father's couch, his birthright was given to the sons of Joseph the son of Israel, so that he could not be enrolled as the oldest son…”
C. In contrast, Joseph DELIVERED the entire family from starvation (Genesis 42-46).
D. The firstborn son was given a DOUBLE portion of the inheritance, thus Joseph’s sons each became a TRIBE of Israel (the two “half tribes”) as though Jacob’s sons (Genesis 48:5).
E. When he blessed them, he knew they would BLESSED, prolific, and influential — by faith.
• Ephraim would be the leading tribe of the northern kingdom of Israel.
F. Jacob did not create the elevated status of Ephraim and Manasseh, but he RECOGNIZED, by faith, what God would do with them.
Application: It doesn’t take us long in life to realize that we are all different, & that God has different plans for all of us. Rather than be jealous, appreciated your role.
III. Faith Than Spans Centuries: Joseph’s Faith in God’s Promises Was Ironclad, and He Wanted His Remains to Be A Reminder of Why We Should TRUST God (11:22). [confer with Genesis 50:24-25, Exodus 13:19]
A. God is not subject to TIME.