You will be familiar with facing an odd especially we have just gone through a pandemic. Do you know the story of Abraham Lincoln? He went through a lot of odds in life but yet he could say that “My concern is not whether God is on our side but to be on God’s side for God is always right. “
Aren’t you glad that our God is not working on the odds but against the odds? Think about Jesus, Mary and Moses. All things seems impossible but possible with God.
Aptitude that demands attitude- Judah (Genesis 37-50)
What is aptitude? One’s natural ability, intelligence, quickness to learn. Attitude is our feeling or opinion about something or someone resulting in our behavior. Attitude whether negative or positive affects our outlook in life. What is our attitude today? Towards circumstances and towards people? Attitude makes or breaks us. Attitude breaks or makes relationships. Attitude can be godly.
-Our attitude depends on our choice (3 goats)
Our main character is Judah. Who is Judah? He is Jacob’s son. You see, the family tree shows us that it’s a family who deceives others and thereby also being deceived. Jacob cheated his father. Judah did not live a righteous life. Sometimes however we behave will be passed down to many generations.
Judah said to his brothers, “What will we gain if we kill our brother and cover up his blood? 27 Come, let’s sell him to the Ishmaelites and not lay our hands on him; after all, he is our brother, our own flesh and blood.” His brothers agreed 28 So when the Midianite merchants came by, his brothers pulled Joseph up out of the cistern and sold him for twenty shekels[b] of silver to the Ishmaelites, who took him to Egypt……Then they got Joseph’s robe, slaughtered a goat and dipped the robe in the blood. 32 They took the ornate robe back to their father and said, “We found this. Examine it to see whether it is your son’s robe.”-Genesis 37:26-32
-Our attitude defines our character (3 plots)
In Genesis 38, Judah plotted against his daughter in law and refused to give his youngest son to her as both her older sons died. However, his daughter in law plotted against him instead. With this story, we can see that Tamar appeared in the genealogy of Jesus. Isn’t it amazing that despite of the sin and family complications? God can use anyone for His glory. (Matthew 1:1-25)
Then Judah said to Onan, “Sleep with your brother’s wife and fulfill your duty to her as a brother-in-law to raise up offspring for your brother.” 9 But Onan knew that the child would not be his; so whenever he slept with his brother’s wife, he spilled his semen on the ground to keep from providing offspring for his brother. 10 What he did was wicked in the Lord’s sight; so the Lord put him to death also. 11 Judah then said to his daughter-in-law Tamar, “Live as a widow in your father’s household until my son Shelah grows up.” For he thought, “He may die too, just like his brothers.” So Tamar went to live in her father’s household. 12 After a long time Judah’s wife, the daughter of Shua, died. When Judah had recovered from his grief, he went up to Timnah, to the men who were shearing his sheep, and his friend Hirah the Adullamite went with him. 13 When Tamar was told, “Your father-in-law is on his way to Timnah to shear his sheep,” 14 she took off her widow’s clothes, covered herself with a veil to disguise herself, and then sat down at the entrance to Enaim, which is on the road to Timnah. For she saw that, though Shelah had now grown up, she had not been given to him as his wife. 15 When Judah saw her, he thought she was a prostitute, for she had covered her face. 16 Not realizing that she was his daughter-in-law, he went over to her by the roadside and said, “Come now, let me sleep with you.” “And what will you give me to sleep with you?” she asked. 17 “I’ll send you a young goat from my flock,” he said.
24 About three months later Judah was told, “Your daughter-in-law Tamar is guilty of prostitution, and as a result she is now pregnant.”Judah said, “Bring her out and have her burned to death!” 25 As she was being brought out, she sent a message to her father-in-law. “I am pregnant by the man who owns these,” she said. And she added, “See if you recognize whose seal and cord and staff these are.”26 Judah recognized them and said, “She is more righteous than I, since I wouldn’t give her to my son Shelah.” And he did not sleep with her again.
Good times often do not reveal who we are, but who we are are often revealed during difficult times.
-Our attitude determines our conclusion.
Joseph in Egypt (Genesis 42-47)
Pharaoh (a Ruler in Ancient Egypt) had a dream of which no one can interpret except Joseph. This resulted in Joseph being promoted to the Prime minister in Egypt. Later, the dream revealed by God to Joseph was that Egypt will have 7 years of abundance and 7 years of famine. In the 2nd year, Caanan was also hit by the famine. Jacob sent all his sons except Benjamin to buy food. Later we know that Joseph revealed himself as their lost brother whom they sold. He tested their attitudes before revealing himself. They passed the test. Attitude Number two: test their attitudes towards money. Joseph plotted against his brothers and put in money into their sack. They realized the test and knew that Joseph was testing them. So they decided to leave and went back to Caanan. Because the famine was so bad, they had to go back to buy food from Joseph. So, they went back with Benjamin and explained about the money in the sack. Attitude test number three- Attitude towards Benjamin-if they still held on to the bitter attitude towards Joseph, they could have hated Benjamin too. So Joseph decided to put the brothers to a test. The brothers passed the test. (Genesis 44:32- Judah said: For your servant became surety for the lad (Benjamin) to my father saying ‘if I do not bring him back to you, then I shall bear the blame before my father forever. Now therefore, please let your servant remain instead of the lad…” There is a change of attitude and a change of heart for Judah. Our attitude will determine our conclusion. God’s conclusion for us will always be good when we choose godly attitude. The conclusion that is needed is God’s purpose, God’s glory. Romans 8:28 – And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”
How can we have godly attitude? Love God and choose to please God. And we know that God’s purpose will be fulfilled in us. Surrender your difficulties and circumstances to God. You may feel sad or angry, but surrender to God. Choose God, not your feelings.
Let’s do an attitude check this week. Is our attitude in alignment with God’s word?