Father Abraham, had many sons, but only one with Sarah. Isaac and Rebekah had Esau and Jacob, and what a story that is. The crux of it all is that the father loved Esau and the mom loved Jacob, so of course they were going to have problems. Jacob wins the birthright and the blessing and gets a dream of a stairway to heaven. Eventually, not now, but Jacob actually becomes Israel and he has the twelve children who are the twelve tribes of Israel. We will spend a little more time when we get to those chapters. But it all goes back to the conflict between Esau and Jacob and Jacob winning at just about everything, even though he is the youngest. That theme will continue as well as we see it with Joseph and King David and a number of others.
Did you notice that Isaac pulled the whole “she is my sister” trick and almost got all of them killed? I guess that happens when you have a wife who turns heads, but it still strikes me as kind of self-serving on the part of the husband. I guess I can take out the conditional. It is very much self-serving. I love the final story of Jacob’s ladder that was climging higher and higher. He calls the place Bethel, which in Hebrew means house of God. I would love to have a church that considered itself, if not named itself, Bethel. The house of God.
Now to John. There is no more important chapter in the Bible than John 14. I think I have said that for a few chapters already. But the understanding that Jesus tells us that God will send the counselor is in reality a promise that the Holy Spirit will be with us and is with us in this now and not yet time. This now and not yet time in which we find ourselves is the time that we are called to do the will of God and yet at the same time anticipate the second coming when we will all be drawn to Christ. Jesus’ answer to Thomas who questions where we are to follow Jesus because we do not know the way is our calling card. Look at vs.6 where Jesus says: “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the father except through me.”
There is only one thing that would cause me to be schismatic. Look that word up: schismatic
If at any point anyone higher up may mess with the truth that Jesus is the only way to the Father, that Jesus is the only way to salvation, that Jesus is the only one true God, then that will cause me to think twice about the associations I have at a religious level. Jesus is the one and the only one. I hope I have emphasized that enough. Don’t allow people to convince you that there are many ways to God. Not according to this verse. Don’t allow others to convince you that we all worship the same God, we do not. If you ask a person of another religious if they worship the same God that we worship, they would say no. For some reason we have a hesitancy to claim the exclusiveness of Jesus and insist on an inclusiveness that completely neuters our God. Maybe I’ve had too much coffee.