Today’s thought “Lift up your eyes and see – God shall know it” (January 18)

In today’s reading Genesis 31 we hear about a dream of Jacob and him knowing that the father of Rachel and Leah did not regarded him with favour as he did before. But he also knew that the God of his father had been with him all the time (verse 4-5) In this chapter of the first book of Moses we find that an angel is bringing the words of God and saying “I am the God” (Genesis 31:11-13), what many Christians do forget and consider that when they see Jesus is called a god, this angel then should also be the God, certainly when he even says ‘I am the God of Bethel” something what Jesus never did.  In such instance they also should consider the angel to be God as well, but also later Moses and Pharaoh too because they are also called god (we shall see later).

11 “Later, the angel of God spoke to me in a dream, ‘Jacob.’

“‘Here I am,’ I replied

12 “‘Look around!’ he said. ‘Go ahead, look! All the male goats have been mating with the flock, producing offspring that are streaked, speckled, and spotted, because I’ve been watching everything that Laban has done to you. 13 I am the God of Bethel, the place where you consecrated that stone and made a vow to me. Now get up, leave this territory, and return to your native land.’”[a]

Footnotes: Genesis 31:13Lit. to the land of your birth {Genesis 31:11-13International Standard Version (ISV)}

Later in an other dream Jacob gets to hear

“Be careful what you say to Jacob, whether it’s one word good or bad.” (Genesis 31:24)

In this chapter we see how dangerous it can be when we promise something to do. Jacob having sworn to kill the trespasser or the one who had taken the statues of the false gods, would have had to kill Rachel who stole the statues from her father.

32 Now as to your gods, if you find someone has them in their possession, he’s a dead man.[a] Take our relatives as witnesses, search through our belongings, and take whatever belongs to you that’s in my possession.” But Jacob didn’t know that Rachel had stolen the idols.[b]

  1. Genesis 31:32Lit. he is not to live
  2. Genesis 31:32Lit. them {Genesis 31:32International Standard Version (ISV)}

When we look at Jacob we can see he always tried to do more than he had to do. He worked hard, and in several occasions he was not rewarded for all he did. But his work did not pass unnoticed. God was happy with what  Jacob did and gave recognition and a reward. We see that God protected him when Laban came searching for him and that Jehovah had seen Jacob’s hard work and therefore came to his rescue. Jacob didn’t have to defend himself. He knew that the Most High Almighty God was on his side.

Except the God of my father, the God of Abraham, and the fear of Isaac, had been with me, surely thou hadst sent me away now empty. God hath seen mine affliction and the labour of my hands, and rebuked thee yesternight. {Genesis 31:42King James Version (KJV)}

Concerning the women we also can see how God was with them, though Rachel for example tried to solve her problems her way. Though Jacob did not love Leah, God did and gave her children whilst Rachel could not conceive (Genesis 29:31) .

Laban pretends to be fair but really was not and did not keep his word and removed the speckled and spotted sheep and black lambs and goats so that Jacob would not get anything (Genesis 30:35-36). Laban knowing his children got children from Jacob at last preferred to come to an agreement, in the knowledge that those children where his grandchildren. (Genesis 31:43-44) Therefore Jacob and Laban entered into a covenant (Genesis 31:43-50)

The Heap of Witnesses (illustration from the 1890 Holman Bible)

A Mizpa or Watchtower (“the heap of witness” and “watch post”) was considered as the place where-from God would watch, so that God could watch between them, when they were out of one another’s sight. As such God is witness between them, also watching over Jacob and how he treats Laban’s daughters, but also between us and how we treat others around us.

God is able to see how faithful we are unto him and how we cope with our desires. He is the One Who can see everything. Nothing can stay hidden in front of Him. He knows how we are feeling, what we are dreaming of, everything what troubles our heart. We may never forget that Jehovah God sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Host of hosts looks on the heart.

But the Lord said to Samuel,

“Do not look at his appearance or his stature, because I have rejected him. Man does not see what the Lord sees,[a] for man sees what is visible,[b] but the Lord sees the heart.”

Footnotes:

  1. 1 Samuel 16:7LXX reads God does not see as a man sees

  2. 1 Samuel 16:7Lit what is of the eyes {1 Samuel 16:7 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)}

We may try to do whatever we want, nothing shall stay hidden for God. He sees good and bad, things open to all people, but also things hidden for most people.

We best come clean before God, opening our soul, showing our feelings, our weaknesses and our strengths. Always we should make sure that what we do to others shall not make us to cause a rift in our relationship with God.

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Preceding

Today’s thought “Blessed is the man against whom the LORD counts no iniquity” (January 15)

Today’s thought “Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good” (January 17)

Today’s thought Favouritism and prejudice (January 18)

Today’s thought “Great is the LORD, who delights in …” (January 18)

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Preceding article

Today’s thought “Unworthy of all the kindness and faithfulness” (January 19)

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Related articles

  1. Genesis 29-31
  2. January 9: Psalm 9; Genesis 29-31
  3. Eyes on Our Comforter – Genesis 29:31-36
  4. Through the Bible in one year 2018; 16th January 
  5. Genesis 31
  6. Genesis 31-33
  7. Genesis 31:1-48
  8. Genesis 30-31; Psalms 11; Mark 12
  9. Genesis 31, Jacob flees from Laban, Rachel’s theft of idols, the Mizpah.
  10. “The Fearsome God of Isaac”
  11. God Sees All…
  12. Witness heap
  13. Mizpah
  14. Symbol of the Month – Mizpah
  15. Mizpah — it’s not what you think [Genesis 31:43-55]

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