Awesome Hands – part 10: “Thy walls are continually before me”


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Awesome Hands – Part 10

Ezekiel 21:8 –  Again the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
Ezekiel 21:9 –  Son of man, prophesy, and say, Thus saith the LORD; Say, A sword, a sword is sharpened, and also furbished:
Ezekiel 21:10 –  It is sharpened to make a sore slaughter; it is furbished that it may glitter: should we then make mirth? it contemneth the rod of my son, as every tree.
Ezekiel 21:11 –  And he hath given it to be furbished, that it may be handled: this sword is sharpened, and it is furbished, to give it into the hand of the slayer.
Ezekiel 21:12 –  Cry and howl, son of man: for it shall be upon my people, it shall be upon all the princes of Israel: terrors by reason of the sword shall be upon my people: smite therefore upon thy thigh.
Ezekiel 21:13 –  Because it is a trial, and what if the sword contemn even the rod? it shall be no more, saith the Lord GOD.

Recapping last study, we saw that we are indeed between the Rock and a hard place. The Lord has sharpened us, the sword and the rod to be perfect instruments in His hands.

In the verses we just read, we see that the sword is sharpened and furbished so that it is going to make one strike only and that strike will be all that is needed.  When we look at other translations, we can see that this sword glistens as if it were lightning. Indeed, the Word of God is swift and sharp.

This sword is going to be upon the body of Christ, the church of the living God. As such, we are not left to guess why this is the case, “because it is a trial”.

It is a trial to those who are the people of God because simply put, we must have our flesh, our natural man, our carnal mind eradicated. No flesh shall glory in the presence of the Lord.

1Co 1:29 –  That no flesh should glory in his presence.

As the Lord sees us as He created us, He indeed knew what He was saying when He calls us out in Leviticus.

Lev 11:27 –  And whatsoever goeth upon his paws, among all manner of beasts that go on all four, those are unclean unto you: whoso toucheth their carcase shall be unclean until the even.

This word translated as paws, is hands in other scripture. More correctly and closely translated to its meaning, we discover that it is that beast that goes upon the palms of their hands, the innermost part of the hand.

It is here, the innermost man, which the Lord knows everything that we are about because He has furbished us into exactly what we are and are going to be. Indeed, He knows us so well and loves us so much that He has gravened us onto His hands!

While He sends judgment on His house now, He does it lovely. Though it is a FIERY trial now, we must rejoice in the love that is being shown to us!

The sword that is sent to His people is one to cleanse and purge us of our old ways of living and thinking, those things which are decaying day by day and will soon no longer matter.

Isa 49:13 –  Sing, O heavens; and be joyful, O earth; and break forth into singing, O mountains: for the LORD hath comforted his people, and will have mercy upon his afflicted.
Isa 49:14 –  But Zion said, The LORD hath forsaken me, and my Lord hath forgotten me.
Isa 49:15 –  Can a woman forget her sucking child, that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb? yea, they may forget, yet will I not forget thee.
Isa 49:16 –  Behold, I have graven thee upon the palms of my hands; thy walls are continually before me.

Wow, why me oh Lord? I am chiefest of the scum of the earth, I will always choose the ways of my father the devil and like him I will always eat of the dust of the ground, the earth I shall soon join…. why have you chosen me Lord?

Thy walls are continually before me

Zion cried out and said, “why have you forsaken me,” so what makes me think that I too wont question why my Father does what He does to me and to others in my life? In today’s study, we will see more examples of just how gravened we are on our Father’s hands.

In the last study, we left off with the last verse having to do with hands in Gen 20:5. Today, we will be looking at Gen 21:18 and the story that builds up to it from Gen 20:5 to Gen 21:18.

Generally speaking, most Christians are familiar with the story of Isaac being born because this is partly where we get the meaning to see where Abraham’s title of the father of the faithful comes from.

Of course, we should see Christ within every story we read thus seeing ourselves there with Him as His body.

Gen 21:1 –  And the LORD visited Sarah as he had said, and the LORD did unto Sarah as he had spoken.
Gen 21:2 –  For Sarah conceived, and bare Abraham a son in his old age, at the set time of which God had spoken to him.
Gen 21:3 –  And Abraham called the name of his son that was born unto him, whom Sarah bare to him, Isaac.
Gen 21:4 –  And Abraham circumcised his son Isaac being eight days old, as God had commanded him.
Gen 21:5 –  And Abraham was an hundred years old, when his son Isaac was born unto him.
Gen 21:6 –  And Sarah said, God hath made me to laugh, so that all that hear will laugh with me.
Gen 21:7 –  And she said, Who would have said unto Abraham, that Sarah should have given children suck? for I have born him a son in his old age.

Given all that we have said already, we know that God has everything under control. When God told Abraham and Sarah that they were going to have a son, Sarah laughed.

Here, it is said that folks will laugh with Sarah that she has child…. denoting joy. After all, having a child in old age is a blessing for mostly anyone that receives that blessing. Notice though, that it is when Abraham Isa 100, think 10 x 10 or 10, the perfection of the flesh because we see that God commands the Abraham circumcise Isaac and bring in the new man. Amen, I laugh with joy with Sarah in this spiritual new man!

However, this new man does need to grow and as such be weaned from milk. So, we see the next progression of this new man. He must be separated from His brethren…. He will not be in league with the son of the bondwoman!

Gen 21:8 –  And the child grew, and was weaned: and Abraham made a great feast the same day that Isaac was weaned.
Gen 21:9 –  And Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian, which she had born unto Abraham, mocking.
Gen 21:10 –  Wherefore she said unto Abraham, Cast out this bondwoman and her son: for the son of this bondwoman shall not be heir with my son, even with Isaac.
Gen 21:11 –  And the thing was very grievous in Abraham’s sight because of his son.

O that Ishmael might live before thee

 

If you will recall, Abraham didn’t even want Isaac to share in Ishmael’s heritage and laughed about God saying Isaac would be coming along. Abraham laughed about this though Sarah gave him a son when he was 99. Isn’t it funny how quickly we forget just how powerful the Lord is?

Gen 17:17 –  Then Abraham fell upon his face, and laughed, and said in his heart, Shall a child be born unto him that is an hundred years old? and shall Sarah, that is ninety years old, bear?
Gen 17:18 –  And Abraham said unto God, O that Ishmael might live before thee!
Gen 17:19 –  And God said, Sarah thy wife shall bear thee a son indeed; and thou shalt call his name Isaac: and I will establish my covenant with him for an everlasting covenant, and with his seed after him.

Now, we have Abraham torn again and it takes the Lord once again showing up and leading Abraham to do what he needs to do in order that the Lord’s plan continue to progress.

Of course, the Lord uses us for His purposes and we have nothing to do with it. We are just the finally sharpened tools gravened into His awesome hands!

Gen 21:12 –  And God said unto Abraham, Let it not be grievous in thy sight because of the lad, and because of thy bondwoman; in all that Sarah hath said unto thee, hearken unto her voice; for in Isaac shall thy seed be called.
Gen 21:13 –  And also of the son of the bondwoman will I make a nation, because he is thy seed.

Did anyone pick up on what we were just told? God tells us to not let what He is doing in our lives be grievous in our sight. In two very succinct verses, we are told that God is blessings us in ALL THAT WE DO. It is our sight that “sees” the situation as grievous.

“Hearken unto her voice; for in Isaac shall thy seed be called” is coupled with “the son of the bondwoman will I make a nation because he is thy seed”.

God knows what He is doing. It is we who laugh and mock God. It is we who are being sent packing down the way which leads to death. God is blessing our old man, our old ways, our natural man and carnal mind so that He can bring it to the point of being burned up during the fiery trial of the situation.

The only thing we need to do is DO what the Lord COMMANDS, but even that is of Him. We are doers of the Word and not hearers ONLY.

So, how are we doers in type and shadow as being Abraham?

Gen 21:14 –  And Abraham rose up early in the morning, and took bread, and a bottle of water, and gave it unto Hagar, putting it on her shoulder, and the child, and sent her away: and she departed, and wandered in the wilderness of Beersheba.

We keep His commandments and we LIVE out what we are told to do. We get up early in the morning with bread and water, the Word of God, Christ and His body….. and we send our old man packing!

In a very quick manner, and under this pattern of how to deal with the things in our old man way of thinking, we will see that our old man simply will begin to die. If it is not being nourished, it will die and Lord willing that happens daily with us!

Gen 21:15 –  And the water was spent in the bottle, and she cast the child under one of the shrubs.
Gen 21:16 –  And she went, and sat her down over against him a good way off, as it were a bowshot: for she said, Let me not see the death of the child. And she sat over against him, and lift up her voice, and wept.
Gen 21:17 –  And God heard the voice of the lad; and the angel of God called to Hagar out of heaven, and said unto her, What aileth thee, Hagar? fear not; for God hath heard the voice of the lad where he is.
Gen 21:18 –  Arise, lift up the lad, and hold him in thine hand; for I will make him a great nation.

Here, we have finally arrived at the word for today’s study which directly deals with God’s hands in that as we have been discovering through this entire, even when the Lord works through our hands it is Him doing it and He is running the show the entire time.

Simply put, God even blessed us while in our old man state of mind to come to Him initially by opening our eyes, giving us a deadly wound which will be healed so that our old man can again thrive in the ways of the flesh until the time appointed of the Lord for this no longer to be the case.

Gen 21:19 –  And God opened her eyes, and she saw a well of water; and she went, and filled the bottle with water, and gave the lad drink.
Gen 21:20 –  And God was with the lad; and he grew, and dwelt in the wilderness, and became an archer.
Gen 21:21 –  And he dwelt in the wilderness of Paran: and his mother took him a wife out of the land of Egypt.

Previously, we also saw that it was initially in the wilderness that God found Hagar weeping and promised that He would make of her son a great nation.

Isn’t it intriguing to anyone else that this is all happening at the same time to both the old and the new man, spiritually speaking?

Gen 16:7 –  And the angel of the LORD found her by a fountain of water in the wilderness, by the fountain in the way to Shur.
Gen 16:8 –  And he said, Hagar, Sarai’s maid, whence camest thou? and whither wilt thou go? And she said, I flee from the face of my mistress Sarai.
Gen 16:9 –  And the angel of the LORD said unto her, Return to thy mistress, and submit thyself under her hands.

Firstly, Hagar is found by a fountain that she obviously can see if she is at that fountain, but this second time she is led to one which she can now she because the Lord has opened her eyes. I sure can relate you how she must feel.

Another interesting point is that the Lord has used Sarah to be the mouthpiece for His will during this time. The Lord originally told Hagar to go back and submit herself to her mistress, and then He tells Abraham how to deal with Hagar by telling Abraham to hearken unto the voice of his wife, Sarah.

Doesn’t it seem like the Lord uses the wife, the body in type and shadow, to institute whatever His will is whenever His will is being revealed. Well, that is exactly what the Lord does. He works through His body, the church, with Christ being the Head by which is is governed.

Gen 21:22 –  And it came to pass at that time, that Abimelech and Phichol the chief captain of his host spake unto Abraham, saying, God is with thee in all that thou doest:
Gen 21:23 –  Now therefore swear unto me here by God that thou wilt not deal falsely with me, nor with my son, nor with my son’s son: but according to the kindness that I have done unto thee, thou shalt do unto me, and to the land wherein thou hast sojourned.
Gen 21:24 –  And Abraham said, I will swear.
Gen 21:25 –  And Abraham reproved Abimelech because of a well of water, which Abimelech’s servants had violently taken away.
Gen 21:26 –  And Abimelech said, I wot not who hath done this thing: neither didst thou tell me, neither yet heard I of it, but to day.
Gen 21:27 –  And Abraham took sheep and oxen, and gave them unto Abimelech; and both of them made a covenant.
Gen 21:28 –  And Abraham set seven ewe lambs of the flock by themselves.
Gen 21:29 –  And Abimelech said unto Abraham, What mean these seven ewe lambs which thou hast set by themselves?
Gen 21:30 –  And he said, For these seven ewe lambs shalt thou take of my hand, that they may be a witness unto me, that I have digged this well.

It seems like poor Abraham just can’t help himself. Each and every example that we have seen through these studies thus far, as they pertain to Abram and Abraham throughout them, have all shown that the Lord continuously blesses Abraham even while Abraham is allowing his flesh to do some atrocious things all while being a prophet of the Lord.

In this example and directly after finally sending the bondwoman and her son packing on the road, Abraham makes a covenant with the Philistines who dwell in the land with him! This is after they have “shown their hand” so to speak, by violently taking a well that belonged to him.

We truly just cannot help ourselves when it comes to what we are going to do based on what the Lord is doing in our lives.

In verse 21:30, we see this happen with Abraham. Abraham is completely committed to this covenant “made with his own hands”.  The word used as hand here is the same Hebrew word “yad” that we have been studying throughout most of this series.

Is it any wonder why the Lord tells us that now we are to “sware not at all”? We love to show our preeminence in what “we are going to do”. Ha!

Gen 21:31 –  Wherefore he called that place Beersheba; because there they sware both of them.
Gen 21:32 –  Thus they made a covenant at Beersheba: then Abimelech rose up, and Phichol the chief captain of his host, and they returned into the land of the Philistines.
Gen 21:33 –  And Abraham planted a grove in Beersheba, and called there on the name of the LORD, the everlasting God.
Gen 21:34 –  And Abraham sojourned in the Philistines’ land many days.

Conclusion

 

Wrapping up this short study, we have seen again that the Lord works all things after the counsel of His own will via His awesome hands.

Our walls, our hedge that He has placed around us is there simply because He is the one who is the watchman over them. He doesn’t change, but we continually do whatever is in our best interests.

We can see this happening in the stories as they play out in Genesis and it ultimately shows is that we are indeed just beasts.

Lev 11:27 –  And whatsoever goeth upon his paws, among all manner of beasts that go on all four, those are unclean unto you: whoso toucheth their carcase shall be unclean until the even.

Abraham, us in type and shadow, is never going to do things according to how the Lord commands him unless the Lord puts things in motion to make it happen that way.

With all of the different characters playing their roles throughout this study today we have seen that the Lord knows what He is doing.

In that, he calls us beasts and sometimes dogs.

Pro 26:11 –  As a dog returneth to his vomit, so a fool returneth to his folly.

2Pe 2:20 –  For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning.
2Pe 2:21 –  For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them.
2Pe 2:22 –  But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog is turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire.

Though we are dogs who continually want to return to that which is only vomit, we also have been created to be arguably the loyalist animal to mankind. In other words, our master also knows of the great love, kindness and loyalty that He has created within that same dog.

Though that point isn’t brought out in these verses, we know that it is a dog who sits at his masters feet waiting on crumbs.

It is the same beast both going back to its own vomit who also waits patient on a crumb, but the Lord deals with us as His children.

One day, that beast will no longer walk on all fours … on the palms of the work of our own Hands, but instead we will stand upright and go on towards being able to “keep the faith” just as we are going to see Abraham do with Isaac in next week’s study, Lord willing.>

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