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Notes on Genesis 35-37

Idols, images, and gods.

Genesis 35:2 has Jacob (Israel) warning his family to put away their “strange gods.” This is in reference to the statues and trinkets that the family stole from Dinah’s rapists who were slaughtered in chapter 34, and the “images” (some translations say “idols”) stolen from Laban way back in chapter 31.

I prefer the KJV translation of “images” rather than “idols.” When I hear “idols,” I think of little statues. When I think of “images,” I think of everything that we see. When a human being worships something other than God, it is typically an image. Statues are images that are given supernatural power by our reification. So are the images on our television screens. So are the images of professional athletes, movie stars, musicians, and pastors. Images are found in art, architecture, and books. When words are spoken to us, we often create images in our mind that act as a physical representation of a spoken image.

Christianity is represented as an image; a cross. Most do not think of the cross as an idol, but it is an image. It is a symbol. Some Christians worship the symbol. I worship the God who became man and died on the cross. I need not carry this crucifix around, because my savior is no longer tied to that old rugged tree.

Another example of incest occurs in Gen. 35: 22 (Ham and Noah, Lot and his daughters, now Reuben and his stepmother) leading to another lost birthright (Cain, Esau, and now Reuben).

Fun fact: Bilhah, the woman in question, was the mother of Dan (tribe of Antichrist) and was Hamitic. Lot’s daughters were also Hamitic. Another incestual relationship was Goliath’s (Hamitic) sons who were also his brothers.

Joseph is the greatest “type of Christ” in the entire Bible. The parallels in Gen. 37 alone are 1. Loved most by his father (v. 3), hated by his brethren (in Christ’s sake, Satan and humans – v. 4), a prophet (v. 5), will be worshipped by has brethren (v. 9), envied by his brethren (v. 11), sent by his father to his brethren (v. 13), conspired against (v. 18), stripped of his clothes (v. 23), cast into a pit (v. 24), given to another to pass judgment – like the Pharisees and Pilate (v. 27), sold for pieces of silver (v. 28), a scapegoat (v. 31), his “death” devastated his father (v. 35).

Envy, once again rears its ugly head. Joseph’s brothers were jealous of him, just as Satan envies Christ, Cain and Abel, Esau and Jacob, Rachel and Leah, Saul and David, Herod and Christ, the Pharisees and Christ. “Who is able to stand against envy?” (Prov. 27:4).

God gets jealous when we worship the images mentioned above. This is why the first TWO commandments deal with God’s envy. Exodus 20: 3-5 says “Thou shalt have no other gods before me. 4.Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: 5. thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me.”

Envy is the “original sin” of Satan. Wanting to be like God (envy) is the “original sin” of Adam and Eve. Sexual perversion is the “original sin” post-flood. The “first mention” of the word “sinner” is connected to the most perverse city in history whose name is synonymous with pleasure seeking and sexual deviance (Sodom). These two “original sins” of envy and sexual perversion are at the crux of almost every major political scandal and social downfall we see in America today.

It is envy that leads to Wall Street greed and the entitlement mindset of the youth. Extra-marital affairs and envious covetousness are destroying the American family. We envy the “perfect” lives of our family and friends on social media and begin to take what we have for granted. We cannot turn on the television, check our Instagram or Facebook pages, open a magazine, or listen to the radio without seeing or hearing some form of pre or extra-marital sexual images (idols). Do we worship these idols more than we do God? He is a jealous God, and we spend more time engaging in images than His Word.

If only we treated God as our idol and filled our minds with His image. How much better would we be? Romans 12:2 says “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”

We must renew our mind by purging it of these images, and replacing them with God’s Word. Turn off the tv and pick up The Bible. That is the key to transformation.

I am tired of conforming.

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