By sight and nature, Esau had the good stuff. He was the first born and had strength. He had enough and it kept him from God. Jacob met the Lord. He wrestled with Him and wound up with a limp. But Jacob got the power and love that came with covenant love. (Malachi 1:2-3; Genesis 33:8-11)
Speaker(s): Pastor Thomas Schaller
Sermon # 11730
11:00 AM on 8/11/2019
Praise the Lord! Look at everybody. Praise the Lord. Halleluiah! Awesome.
Some of you know my mom passed away a week ago. She moved down here 7 months ago from Rome, NY and came to be with us in Baltimore and came to this church. She was so precious to me, 97 years old. She finished her course. She was healthy up until about 3 days before she passed and then went down. She passed to be with my dad and her family and Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Our God is a God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Jesus said is he the God of the dead or the God of the living? What did he mean? Abraham, Isaac and Jacob are alive. God is not the God of the dead. He’s the God of the living. Yesterday we were in Rome, New York with our family and extended family. We had our service there. We buried my mom next to my dad. We have a family plot there with my grandfather Schaller and grandmother and other stones, other relatives that have passed. My mom is the last one that goes into that particular plot of ground. It was very touching. Thank you for your love and prayers. I can say a few things about it in the message this morning.
Ge. 33 for the principle of the message. Then more explanation. We have great preachers in our church. Have you noticed that. We have great men and women that share the word. It’s so good to hear spiritual messages that you can take home. When you leave here and walk across that parking lot, when you go home, you’ll carry with you something you heard in this room from God the Holy Spirit. Our God is a God of communication. He talks. He speaks. Where did this come from? Jewish people. How many? About 40. Did they know each other? Most of them didn’t know each other when they wrote this. Nobody could write this book and say these things unless born along by the H.S. 2 Pet 1:21. It’s filled with instruction with life. My words are spirit and they are life.
Yesterday in the funeral home we had, I have four sisters and a brother. One uncle who is two years younger than my mom, 95, was there yesterday with two of my cousins and other cousins. Two guys from high school came and honored me and my mom and family. I realized in that time that you and I have life. Because we have life, then we make other people hungry, spiritually hungry, thirsty. I noticed sometimes we talk when a relative moves away and then is drawn back to say something more. And then leave and do a circle and come back 20 minutes later. I saw people hungry not for the natural things of life. Anybody that can talk about God or heaven or grace. Anybody that can talk about life being good. God is faithful. You have a message and a ministry in your heart.
These weeks, we have the rest of our summer and moving into the fall. These are important weeks. God wants to help us and lead us in our spiritual life. There are many people satisfied with life without God. Ge 33:8, The context is that Esau and Jacob are meeting each other. I’m going to draw a diagram with that. I’ll do it now to get that in your mind. Were they twins? They were brothers born at the same time. They were not identical but fraternal. They were twins. Who was born first? Esau. How was Jacob born. He came out holding his brother’s heel. It means Jacob had some authority over his brother. He was chosen by God in a spiritual way. He was chosen to be blessed. By birthright he was second. The first born gets the birthright. Esau is representing one kind of person and Jacob another kind. Esau was also described as a hunter. Also, he is called skillful. He’s a picture of a man who is capable. He is, we could say, strong. When he comes to meet Jacob, Jacob is afraid of him. Jacob in Ge 32 is going to God in his weakness and saying God I’m afraid, in principle, not these words. I’m afraid what will happen when I meet my brother because I know he’s a strong guy and could have revenge on me and hate me and kill me because I stole the birthright. They wrestled. J.C. is the angel wrestling with him. He’s not an angel but referred to as the angel of the Lord in the O.T. He wrestles with Jacob and Jacob says what is your name. Christ says what his name is. Your name will be called Israel because you have power with God and man. Israel. Jacob becomes Israel. You have power with God. Jacob walks away with a limp from the wrestling match and never walks again. Even though he is wounded, he is strong, even though he has had an encounter with God.
When we have an encounter with God, it’s based on our need. I’m in trouble. Help me. I have need. This profile of the person Jacob is a study for us because we are these kinds of people. We are like Jacob. We are people that are not very good in ourselves. But we have God by covenant. We have God by promise. Christ is come into our hearts and J.C. is our strength. Our life, our new mind, our spirit, the Holy Spirit, our new life is based on God. There are many elements in this story that help us understand how Jacob is afraid. When he’s going to meet Esau, he decides to do a tactical maneuver and sent Esau waves of gifts like a wave of cattle, sheep, goats and finally Jacob comes at the end with his family. He’s surprised that Esau is happy to meet him. He’s not angry. Esau is in a good mood. He’s not a problem after all. God answered his prayer. Esau was reconciled with Jacob but then they decide to go their separate ways. The waves of cattle coming in Ge 33:8. You can read it in the text in chapter 33 how the story goes.
What do you mean by all these animals coming in droves. These are to find grace in the sight of our Lord. Esau said I have enough my brother. Keep that unto yourself. I’d like to write these words, I have enough. This is a simple sentence that has a lot of meaning to it. You can read into that sentence. I have enough. A sentence said by a lot of people who were in the world. They say I have enough. What do you mean? I like my life. I’m good. I got enough. I’m satisfied. But in the bigger picture, Esau doesn’t have anything. He has a blessing from his father. Only in this life he would have a family and a certain amount of wealth. That’s what Isaac blessed him with but couldn’t bless him with the real blessing he blessed Jacob with. The covenant blessing came on Jacob, the blessing of a kingdom. It’s much more than what the natural man has. The experience I had in the last few days and everyday living in America is in one sense, sad. I see people that say, I have enough. But you could say to them, do you have forgiveness of sin? They say I don’t know what you are talking about. I have my motorcycle, my kids, my bank account, my security. I have enough. Esau, do you know what you’re saying? What do you have that will last forever.
In our family, my family went from the cemetery and we were driving to go eat together by Lake Delta in the country a little bit and on the way is my mom’s house and before her house is my grandmother’s house on Jay Street. Our family back in 1950s and 60s gathered Christmas Eve at my grandparent’s home. That was my grandmother’s birthday. She lived to be 103 years old. My mom’s side of the family they live a long time. In the war, World War II, they got the message that one of their sons was lost as a pilot out to sea and never came back. It affected my grandmother. They say she never got over it. She had other sons and my mom, her daughter. We had 22 cousins and we would meet. I remember those years as a little guy. Then we drove up the next spot where we grew up as kids with my mom and dad. We had a business; a butcher shop and grocery store and we learned how to cut meat and tar the roof and plant tomatoes and had a pony and dogs and cats. It was a little type of farm, not exactly, but a business. My mom was hard working. My dad had a real heart attack when he was 45 years old. It took him out. My mom stepped in and took over the business and ran things as he recovered. He survived another 14 years and then passed away. We never gossiped in our house. I never heard my mother say an unkind word about anyone in the neighborhood. If you don’t have anything good to say about anyone, then don’t say it. There are pictures of us when we were little people, and now we are 60s and 70s in age and standing in front of the house in tears and saying mom and dad, thank you. You did it. How did you do it? You did it. We survived. Here we are. We are all believers. We have found you Christ. Thank you. They were not evangelical believers but later through our influence that became more of a part of our family. And then everyone of us siblings became born again believers. What I want to say is I can’t believe my mom and dad had this Esau profile.
I am strong. I am able to do this. I am a hunter. I have enough. I have enough. I don’t need God. I got this under control. I am able to do this. They didn’t. I saw my dad on his knees at his bedside. I saw my mom and dad pray before every meal in faith and trust. It was sacred. I don’t want to embellish that too much. I believe behind the picture is the grace of God. saying if you seek me, you will find me. That’s what Jacob did. In the text here, Ge 33:9, Esau said I have enough. He means it like I don’t need God. I don’t need the birthright. I don’t need your promises. I don’t need the covenant. This is my words. I’m trying to draw a picture. I’m not too far off at all.
Mal 1 this is what God says about Esau. God is saying to Israel, I love you. Wherein have you loved us? Mal 1:1-2 even though Jacob is related to Esau, I still love Jacob. That’s such a statement of disgust for Esau. I’m disgusted with Esau. Esau is out of the picture. I hated Esau. How can you say that God. I have loved Esau, I died for Esau, I am for Esau, but Esau is saying I don’t need you God. I have enough. I don’t care about you. I’m just living my life. I got my lunch, my strawberries, my job. I don’t even think about God or care about God. God is saying I hate that spirit. I hate that sin, that mind, that rebellion, that indifference. I hate Esau. Another thing here, is when Esau came to meet Jacob it says 400 men came with Esau. It was an army. I think in the world they make armies of men with a lot of muscle and power and a lot of strength. God is saying, Esau, go ahead. Give it your best shot. Have a big army of NFL football players that can pump iron day and night and eat steroids for lunch. Go ahead. That’s the best you got. I got enough. God is saying. You don’t know what you’re talking about. You got nothing. That’s the Laodicean church today. We are strong, clean and adorned with everything and God is saying you are naked, wretched and blind.
The way to God is by weakness. By being broken and saying Lord I know all of that. I got it but it’s not enough for me. Esau should say not enough. Right? I think life is this way. We should learn to say it’s not enough. Very curious about social media and how it affects people and how much people are gloating in their artificial life. All that I got and make sure you see it as I post it. Look at what I got. You don’t have anything. What do you have? When death knocks on your door, what do you have? When you fail many times in life, what do you have. My son is in medical studies and the narrow entry. It means there are a lot of people that don’t make it. If you look at school sometimes, let’s say you have 1,000 who go to school and a few hundred finished. What happened to the other hundreds? I’m interested in the other hundreds. The few that are valedictorian and the very top people, that’s fine with them and God bless them, and may they become like Esau too, but I’d like to go after the hundreds of people that are out because these are people that have need. They are people that say I need help and we can say Christ is for you. God, not the school. The school isn’t the bottom line. A school isn’t a bottom line for people. If someone failed in school or military or business or family, that’s not bottom-line definition for my life. God is the God of the common person, of the person that fails seven times. He has a covenant, a promise for people that seek him. They will find him. If they call upon him, I will answer. If they come to me, I will not hold back any good thing from him that walks uprightly. Ge 33 Jacob has something to say too.
He says Ge 33:10-11. If you look up at the screen, Esau said I have enough, and Jacob says now I have enough. Mathew Henry says it’s better translated I have all. Can we park here for a minute and explain this. You know what I’m going to say probably. The natural man, Esau says I got enough. I got enough. But actually, Esau if you knew what is coming at the judgment and everyone must stand before God at the judgment, you would say, I don’t have enough. Actually, I don’t have anything. When you stand before God, what do you have? Only your own righteousness which is not enough. Esau you don’t have enough. The deception is I have. I have a good life. We all heard it. A believer could say the same thing. I don’t need the church. I got enough. I don’t need to read my Bible. I got enough. I don’t need to trust God like those crazy people. God is taking care of me. I got enough. Be careful with that. You may not know what you are talking about. Do you have enough? Ten virgins have oil. At midnight, the bride groom came knocking. They went out to meet him and five ran out of oil. Give me the oil. I can’t give you the oil. That happens in life. When Esau says I got enough but doesn’t have enough. He turns to you and says give me what you got. I can’t. You got to get this on your own by faith. By being broken before God and trusting in God and believing in God and loving God and receiving from God and embracing God. Going to church and hearing a word from God. This is where we get our oil from. Trust in the Lord with all your heart.
The other one, Jacob is saying I have enough. That’s true. Jacob has. He’s got it all. When you have Christ, you have everything. 1 Cor 3. I got enough. I got it all. All things are yours in 1 Cor 3:19. All the promises are yea and amen. I have his righteousness. Rom 3, Rom. 4:23. It’s imputed to us. Rom. 5:2, we are forgiven of all our sin. Ps 103:10. Micah 7:19, our name is in the Book of life, Luke 10:21. I have it all. I have it all. Jacob, what do you have? I’m limping but don’t underestimate who I am. I got it all. Esau comes with his muscular army and what does Jacob come with? Cows and cattle and sheep and his little family. He’s saying I can’t walk faster than the pregnant sheep. Go ahead but I can’t travel faster than the pregnant sheep. That’s like a pastor in weakness with a limp but he’s got it all. You keep your eye on Jacob. There is something going on in his life that you can’t explain. That’s what I want to say about my family.
We are not a perfect family but how good God has been to us for 60 years. To say to my mom and dad you did a good job because you introduced us to believing and trusting in God, a faith in God. We heard the gospel and believed and trusted. We got it all and so do you and me. We got it all. We got it all. We do. We got it all. We got it all. It’s amazing. There’s nothing lacking. You might say you know pastor; I’m discouraged very deeply. I think that’s the point. This guy Jacob had 12 sons and if you read their history, none of them were really great except Joseph. 1 out of 12. The others were liars and other things. In his family, he had sons and Dina his daughter. She was raped and you go through the history and see the problems in his family. It didn’t stop God from saying Jacob I love, but Esau I hated. Why? He could care less about me and why he’s alive and on the planet. He could care less about the purpose of life. I was drawing him, and he had no interest. He was a fornicator and idolater and a bitter, angry man deep inside. Don’t get bitter. Get soft. Don’t get angry. Get humble. Don’t get arrogant and detached.
Some of you have been born again and brought up in the church and your children have and then their children. If you stop coming and leave the church, where will your children end up? You might say they will end up like me. Not necessarily. How do you know they will become a believer and be a satisfied, spiritual believer like Jacob? How do you know they won’t become like Esau? How do you know your children and grandchildren couldn’t become like Esau. My advice is to lead them in the faith. Bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord and love them and encourage them and teach them to be humble. Our children and children’s children would be spiritually hungry. Say to them, young man, you will have trouble in life but when you put your trust in God, he will answer you, lead you and guide you.
Young lady, you will be wanting to draw men’s attention to you. Young woman. You want men’s attention. You want to see how your feminine capabilities are working and how you can draw attention to yourself. You want that attention. Fine, but it’s not enough. It’s not enough. Nothing in this world is enough. Esau said it is enough. Jacob is saying it’s not enough. I need God. If I can find God and trust God, then it is enough. Then it is enough. He will give me enough. He will satisfy me. When men do not pay attention to me, I am satisfied. When a man is not successful, and he fails and finds God, God is enough. What a man he is. When he can say, I’m okay. Did you fail in this and that? You could say it that way. I am bigger than failure.
I have the living God who is teaching me how to live. I’m learning I can walk upon…my stumbling stones become steppingstones. Failure may be an opportunity to be successful and overcome. Our God is not like other gods. Amen. I have enough. Esau said it and Jacob said it. Which one had enough? Jacob had and Esau didn’t.
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