Athlete, God Uses All of Us

*This series was written by the AIA staff team at UVA

Read Genesis 49

Yesterday, we read about Joseph’s double-portion inheritance, which Jacob pronounced upon him.  Joseph would have two sons who would receive a generous inheritance and have a name in the promised land!

Today, we see in Jacob’s prophecy that he had his own kind of double-portion through his two sons, Judah and Joseph!  Of course, Jacob actually has twelve sons who would have a name (or two in Joseph’s case) and receive a generous inheritance in the promised land.  Every descendant of these twelve sons would be included in Israel and receive the covenant of God, but as we read Jacob’s prophecy, we are not surprised that Judah and Joseph stand out among their brothers.  They are the primary Christ-figures among Jacob’s sons in the book of Genesis.  Judah will become a kingly tribe, the leader of the nation (49:10).  David, the first good king of Israel, comes from Judah, as does Jesus, the “lion of Judah” and eternal Davidic King (Revelation 5:5).  Joseph is called a “prince” and, as we know, is given an abundant, “fruitful” double-blessing.  

Jacob’s prophecy, especially in regard to Judah’s line, is another reminder of God’s sovereignty over all of history as He works to save a people from sin and death for himself.  We knew as early as Genesis 3, immediately after Adam and Eve’s fall into sin, that the wheels of God’s plan of redemption were already turning.  Here we are reminded that the wheels of God's plan of redemption are always turning, as Jacob prophesies about Judah’s kingship almost a thousand years before David took the throne and almost two thousand years before Jesus took on our humanity.  

Questions for Reflection and Prayer

1. When we begin to understand the full story of Scripture and how God has orchestrated his plan of redemption throughout all of history, our faith deepens and our awe of the power and wisdom and love of God grows.  Take time to reflect on the amazing power and wisdom of God, and his ability to work in and through millions of human decisions, good and (often) bad, to accomplish salvation.

2. Not all of the brothers are a Judah or a Joseph, a king or a prince, but they are all included in God's covenant promises.  God uses every one of his people in vastly different ways.  Some have a role in the spotlight and others do not.  Are you seeking to serve God with whatever gifts and roles He has given you at this time?  Do you value some Christians more highly because they have a prominent role in the body of Christ, while not valuing others?  Are you thankful for who God has made you?  At the same time, are there perhaps untapped gifts or opportunities for service that you need to develop or pursue?

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