The online Bible teaching ministry of Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
A daily, Bible-based perspective of hope, encouragement and exhortation.
Tuesday, January 11, 2022
A Berks County Pennsylvania bank barn.
These bank barns are common throughout Pennsylvania with the typical uneven terrain. The design allows grade level access to both levels.
Message summary: Today's message chronicles a warm reunion between two feuding brothers who had been estranged for many years; Jacob and Esau. Let us experience the truth of “How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in unity!” (Psalm 133:1).
Note: We prepared a podcast for today's message but when we were done (we thought) I noticed the recorder had malfunctioned! Due to an early appointment we need to leave so we won't be preparing one today.
"But Esau ran to meet Jacob and embraced him; he threw his arms around his neck and kissed him. And they wept" (Genesis 33:4). “How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in unity!” (Psalm 133:1).
One of the occasional aromas we have here in Lancaster County comes from a huge Kelloggs Cereal Plant between Mount Joy and Lancaster along Rt 283. Depending on what they are making and wind conditions we have a very pleasant toasted grain aroma one can smell even on the busy four lane highway. Yesterday I passed the plant and it was emitting the toasting aroma!
Kelloggs was founded in the early 1900's by Dr. John Kellogg and his younger brother, Will Kellogg. Although the two brothers worked together for a long time, they never got along. And their relationship ended with a series of lawsuits.
Historian Howard Markel in his book, "The Kelloggs: The Battling Brothers Of Battle Creek" candidly observed, "There was a lot of bad blood between them, and then after the lawsuit they rarely, if ever, spoke to one another again."
Sadly feuding brothers is not that uncommon. In the course of ministry there have been numerous occasions we have counseled with feuding brothers (and sisters). Not only does this brings great heartache to the parents, it divides a family and the turmoil can last a lifetime right up to the death of a family member.
It didn't take long in the Bible before we have the first record of feuding brothers, Cain and Abel, a feud which had a horrible outcome; mankind's first murder.
The next recorded brotherly feud was between twin brothers Jacob and Esau and it was doozy, largely caused by conniving Jacob. Their feud began in their mother Rebekah's womb, “But the children struggled together within her" (Genesis 25:22). Later it was the birthright then the blessing. Jacob deceived his brother Esau and had left home after Esau threatened to kill him. The narrative focuses on Jacob after this event but it is clear that God had also worked on Esau's heart over the years of estrangement from his brother.
Genesis 32 and 33 record their reconciliation and the events leading up to it. Jacob’s lasting remembrance of Esau was their extremely difficult parting over 20 years earlier. Jacob has dreaded this eventual meeting for years and feared for his life, bravely sending the women and children ahead of him (sarcasm!) He expected severe retribution due to his deceptive trickery years earlier.
But today's text chronicles the warm reunion between these two feuding brothers who had been estranged for many years and is one of the great examples of love and reconciliation in the Bible. "But Esau ran to meet Jacob and embraced him; he threw his arms around his neck and kissed him. And they wept" (Genesis 33:4). Can you think of another similar reconciliation in the Bible?
Their reconciliation meant they were together at their father's funeral without incident in chapter 35:29, "Then he (Isaac) breathed his last and died and was gathered to his people, old and full of years. And his sons Esau and Jacob buried him".
Do you have a brother or sister you need to reconcile with? Experience the truth of “How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in unity!” (Psalm 133:1).
Be encouraged today, (Hebrews 3:13)
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
Daily prayer: Father, we can all be thankful for the good that comes from brothers and sisters who walk together in unity. Since our journey below is hard, long, and full of challenges it is such a blessing when family members come together to lovingly support and encourage one another in the small and big matters of life. Enable us to do our part to keep our family united in love, respectful of our differences, and dutiful in carrying out our responsibilities as a family member. In Jesus' name we pray. Amen.
Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources
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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.
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Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."
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