May 19, 2018
Inheritance? Of course, inheritance comes whenever there is a good father, and there is a Will. Lest we forget, another name for a Will is Testament. So there is the old Will, (Old Testament), and a new Will (New Testament). God gave an inheritance to his children? This is the essence of the book.
So do we know what is in the Will? It is in an open book. A library of books actually. Each one holding extensive promises of relationship, covenant, commitment and legacy.
Romans 4:13 say the Abrahamic covenant of greatness was directed at the people of faith, and was a promise of inheriting the world. ‘For the promise that he should be the heir of the world was not to Abraham or to his seed, through the law, but through the righteousness of faith’.
That is an interesting scripture. The impression has always been created that we are to have nothing to do with the world. But that impression forgets the reason why Jesus came. ‘For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life’. Jesus came because God loves the world. Jesus came to turn a dying world to a fresh breath of life.
His parting words to His disciples and all who would come to believe in Him point to how He wants this work in the world to be done. ‘All power in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore Go into all the nations and make disciples of all men, teaching them to obey all that I’ve taught you’.
Go into the nations. Mingle with people. Influence them with godly truth. Turn them back to God. And this is why I want to draw your attention to this serious business of ‘inheritance’ given in God’s Testaments.
God’s first words about the mankind He made in His image were ‘…let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth’. That definitely does not limit man’s spirituality to singing in church and sitting in pews.
Jacob the patriarch went on to make very interesting prophecies of what he said would be the destiny of Israel when he lay on his death bed in Genesis 49. For Reuben, Simeon and Levi who he found to have lived cruelly and recklessly, he gave nothing. To Judah, he assigned the ‘the scepter’ of kingship, the giving of laws, and extraordinary wealth and stature. Zebulun got the harbors, and all things maritime. Issachar was given servitude in exchange for his labour and a risk free life. He brings to my mind all public, civil and corporate servants who choose an assured life of employment over risk.
I love Dan’s inheritance – he would be a judge, and the interceptor of those who think they are riding unhindered. Gad would live among troops while Asher is the essence of hospitality – yielding royal dainties and juicy food. Naphtali would publish beautiful words. (I love that one too).
Joseph was to be as fruitful trees, command the blessings of airspace, the wealth of the deep (where the oil and mineral resources definitely are), and blessings of family. Benjamin would be the consumer and predator who captures in the morning and divides the spoil at the end. I can think of the world of marketing and finance here!
Jacob’s death-bed legacy was the patriarch’s blessing of market and industrial dominance to his tribes.
Then came Moses the prince turned leader of the greatest exodus yet recorded. Nation builder. Governor, law-giver, judge. A man who managed all arms of government rolled together, as he turned a fleeing group of twelve tribes into a nation with a legal system, judiciary and social arrangements for decent community living.
Note his blessings ‘wherewith he blessed the children of Israel before his death’ in Deuteronomy 33. Note the echoing of Jacob’s donations of market place dominance in Genesis 49. When you go forward to Jesus’ parting words to influence and transform the nations, the picture is settled.
God’s inheritance to His people straddle ministry through leadership. God is not the God of only the people in church. Little wonder that the Bible actors played more market place roles than roles of worshipping in the temple.
I speak of David the soldier and king. Nehemiah the courtier and project manager. Daniel the administrator and prime minister. Ezra the chronicler. Isaiah the palace prophet. Amos the farmer. The kings, judges and soldiers. Esther the beauty contestant and queen. Ruth the contract worker and bride. Abraham the city founder. Peter the fisherman. Paul the lawyer, church planter, gospel writer. Luke the doctor. Matthew the head of Revenue Services. Lydia the entrepreneur. Joanna the city manager’s wife. There were prophets, pastors and teachers. But more market leaders than temple ministers. Think about why. God is in the market place. And he needs us to transform the working arena with godly principles. Isn’t it time we took this seriously?
Lord, make me a leader in the market place, working with your heart of love and sacrifice. Creating influence so that I can bring transformation with godly principles to my generation. I love you, my king.