"CHICKENS COME HOME TO ROOST"
And Jacob was angry with Laban and began to tell him off saying: Where have I wronged you, what is my sin that you have so hotly pursued after me? You have searched through all of my stuff and have found nothing. I was with you for twenty years, during that time I took great care of your flocks, I have not eaten your rams, I bore the loss personally of those sheep that were torn by the wild beasts as you required me. If anything was stolen, I had to pay for it. I was consumed by thirst, and at night I often would stay awake all night freezing. I served you fourteen years for your daughters, and another six years for your cattle, and you changed my wages ten times.
I. JACOB THE CONNIVER AND DECEIVER.
A. He drove a hard bargain.
1. He took advantage of his brothers weakened condition and purchased the birthright for a mess of pottage.
2. He showed no kindness or brotherly love.
B. In deceit, he disguised himself as his brother and stole the birthright.
1. His father intended to bless his older brother, but instead, he was deceived by Jacob who received the patriarchal blessing.
2. Thus as his brother said, he was well named, for the name supplanter. One who overtakes another by tripping his heal.
II. NOW JACOB HAS HAD TO FLEE FROM HIS BROTHER'S WRATH WHO IS BENT ON KILLING HIM, AND HE FLEES TO HIS UNCLE LABEN SOME FOUR HUNDRED MILES AWAY.
A. Here he begins to get a taste of his own medicine, for his Uncle is also a shrewd and conniving scoundrel.
B. He is hired by his uncle to work for 7 years to provide the dowry to marry his daughter Rachel, with whom he had fallen in love with at first sight.
1. He was so love struck that the seven years seemed to pass by rapidly.
2. At the end of the seven years, when they had the marriage ceremony, his uncle presented to him his heavily veiled bride.
3. In the morning's light, he discovered that his uncle had pulled a switcharoo. The bride was not beautiful Rachael who he was so in love with, but her older ugly sister.
a. Even as he had used a disguise to deceive his father, now his uncle uses a disguise to deceive him.
b. He cries out to his uncle about this dastardly deceit but his uncle tells him that it is custom of the culture, the younger sister cannot marry before the older sister.
c. He offers Rachel to him for another seven years of servitude.
4. At the end of the fourteen years of servitude, Jacob has learned well the art of sheepherding and Laban has become quite wealthy, and has realized the value that Jacob has been to him so he offers him a job.
a. Jacob's wages were to be all of the spotted and speckled goats and cattle, and the brown sheep.
b. Jacob's days of heel catching are not over, he seeks to influence the strong cattle and sheep of Laban's to breed with his spotted livestock, and the weak he allows to interbreed.
c. As a result, in time, Jacob possessed the stronger and better herd.
d. Laban did not know just what was going on, but he became suspicious of Jacob and kept changing his wages.
e. But Jacob seemed to stay ahead of him.
f. It is an interesting case of two con men trying to outsmart each other.
5. Laban's sons began to be jealous of the wealth that Jacob was amassing while their father was getting poorer.
6. When Jacob realized that trouble was brewing he decided to flee with his family and return back to his home country.
C. It was the time of the shearing of the sheep and Laban with his flock was separated by three days journey.
1. When it was told Laban that Jacob had fled he, with his sons, began to pursue after him, and finally caught up with him seven days later. 2, We will deal with the rest of that fascinating story tonight, I want to stop here that we might learn a valuable lesson.
II. THERE IS A LAW OF NATURE THAT CROSSES OVER INTO THE SPIRITUAL REALM. WHEN WE SOW, WE REAP IN KIND. THE BIBLE PUTS IT LIKE THIS: "BE NOT DECEIVED, GOD IS NOT MOCKED, WHATSOEVER A MAN SOWETH, THAT SHALL HE ALSO REAP."
A. We immediately recognize that in nature.
1. You do not plant corn seed, and hope to harvest a wheat crop.
2. If you want a wheat crop, you plant wheat.
3. If you want a small harvest, you plant a few seeds.
4. If you want a large harvest, you plant a lot of seeds
B. Where people are deceived and don't stop to consider, this is also true in the spiritual realm, whatever a man sows, that is what he reaps.
C. The scriptures are full of examples of this truth.
1. The story of Jacob is only one of the many stories in the Bible that illustrates this truth.
a. Jacob used a disguise to deceive his father.
b. His uncle uses a disguise to deceive him.
2. There was a king by the name of Adoni-besek. He ruled over city of Besek.
a. When the tribes of Judah and Simeon were fighting against the city of Besek, he fled from the city but they caught him and cut off his thumbs and his big toes.
b. It was a common practice to thus mutilate captives in those days. It kept them from fighting for without their thumbs they could not grip a sword, and without their big toes they could not run fast.
c. Adoni-besek said, There have been 70 kings sitting at my table with their thumbs and big toes cut off. As I have done, so has it been done to me.
3. When the prophet Samuel met Agag the king of the Amalakites he said: "As your sword has made women childless, so shall your mother be childless."
4. Ahab was a wicked king of Israel, and his wife was even more wicked. He coveted a vineyard that belonged to a man named Naboth. Naboth refused to sell the field to him so Jezebel promised to get it for him. She conspired to have Naboth killed by stoning, she then gave her pouting husband the field. The prophet Elijah came to him and proclaimed. Thus saith the LORD, Have you killed and taken possession? In the place where the dogs licked the blood of Naboth, so shall dogs lick your blood. That prophecy was fulfilled.
5. Jesus said:
Judge not, and you shall not be judged: condemn not, and you shall not be condemned: forgive, and you shall be forgiven:
Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use to mete out, that is the measure that will be used to mete to you.
6. James said;
For he shall have judgment without mercy, that hath shewed no mercy;
D. "Be not deceived, God is not mocked, whatsoever a man soweth that shall he also reap.
1. Where the deception comes in is that the reaping is not always immediate.
2. Sometimes it is years before you reap what you have sown.
3. With Jacob it was a full seven years before he was deceived just as he deceived.
4. God has no statute of limitations.
5. There are many of you today who have done things that were totally sinful and wrong.
a. As you sit here, you think that you have gotten by with your evil, it was so long ago, and nobody has found out.
b. There is a passage of scripture that declares,
You have sinned against the LORD: and be sure your sin will find you out.
c. Your thought is that you sinned against the person that you stole from. No, sin is against God.
d. When David was confessing his sin in committing adultery with Bathsheba and having her husband killed so he could marry her, cried to the Lord, "Have mercy upon me O God, according to the multitude of tender mercies, blot out my transgressions, against Thee, and Thee only have I sinned, and done this great iniquity in Your sight.
6. Another deception is that you think that no one but you knows what you did, and it is a well kept secret.
a. God knows. PSA 94:9
He that planted the ear, shall he not hear? he that formed the eye, shall he not see?
b. God not only knows, but a record has been kept of it in heaven, and one day the books will be opened, and you will judged of those things that are written in the book.
E. The beautiful thing is that God has made a way of expunging the things that are written in those books.
1. The Bible tells us that though our sins be as scarlet, we can be as white as snow.
2. The Bible tells us that the blood of Jesus Christ, God's Son cleanses a man from all sin.