This is Spoken Gospel. We’re dedicated to
seeing Jesus in all of scripture. In each episode, we see
what’s happening in a Biblical text and how it sheds light
on Jesus and his gospel. Let’s jump in. Jacob has met with God in a dream with the
ladder, and now he arrives at his grandfather Abraham’s hometown
in order to find himself a wife. Like his father who went before him, Jacob
finds the woman he wants to marry at a well. Her name is Rachel. Jacob agrees to work for Rachel’s father,
Laban, 7 years in exchange for her hand in marriage. Thus, begins a series of tricks
and deceit between Jacob and Laban. Laban deceives Jacob into accidentally
marrying Rachel’s older sister, Leah. Jacob must work 7 more years
to be allowed to marry Rachel as well. This creates a rivalry between Leah and Rachel that
results in them each trying to have children with Jacob. And it’s through this outrageous rivalry, Jacob
has 12 sons, which God would turn into the 12 tribes of Israel.
But the trickery continues over livestock. Through a series of tricks
between both Laban and Jacob, Jacob ends up with the
bigger and healthier flock. But it is not Jacob’s tactics
that made him rich, it was God. Finally, Jacob and his family leave and make their way
back to the land where God had met him in the dream. What are we to make of
all this trickery and deceit? Why would the fathers of the 12 tribes of Israel
come about through such morally dicey means? Well, it’s to show us something incredibly
important about who God is and how he works. God keeps his promises. That’s who he is. He promised that Abraham’s family would become
a great nation, and here we have the beginnings of it. No matter what happens in the world or how
messed up we make it, God will accomplish his plans. God repurposes evil intention and shows
mercy to people who definitely don’t deserve it. This is fully seen in the cross of Jesus. For there has never been
a more dastardly trick played than the betrayal, arrest, false
trial, and innocent murder of Jesus. But through these horrid acts, God
accomplished everything he promised to Jacob. The cross shows us that no matter how
wicked or dark things get, God brings about his good intentions. If he can bring the world’s greatest
good out of the corrupt murder of his innocent son, he can
bring good out of anything. Moreover, the grandest and best trick
ever played was the gospel event itself. Paul explains in 2 Corinthians 2:8 that if people
knew who Jesus was, they would not have crucified him. Furthermore, if the evil spiritual forces knew
what would happen by killing this man Jesus, they wouldn’t have
gone through with it either. The trick of the gospel is
the greatest reversal of all time. Evil thought it would beat Jesus by killing him,
but it ended up being their own defeat. I pray that the Holy Spirit would give you
eyes to see the God who can work through anything to accomplish his plan, and that you would
see Jesus as the one who subverts and conquers sin by his cross by performing the ultimate
trick against death itself by rising from the dead.