Warning: *SPOILER ALERT!
3 He was despised and rejected by mankind,
a man of suffering, and familiar with pain.
Like one from whom people hide their faces
he was despised, and we held him in low esteem.
- Isaiah 53:3 (NIV)
This Sunday, God used Pastor Peggy to deliver an empowering message. Thus far, this is the must hear message of 2019! In fact, if you have not heard the message, stop reading this devotional right now and head straight to our website and listen to it at: www.calvaryalameda.org. If you were there or had a chance to hear the message via Facebook live, you can continue to read to on.
*Pastor Peggy was reading from the book of Genesis and was telling us about Leah’s plight in trying to attain love from her husband Jacob. It wasn’t her idea to marry Jacob. It was her father Laban’s idea. She was not Jacob’s first choice. It was her younger sister Rachel, whom Jacob had chosen and desired. In fact, Leah was never in Jacob’s radar of choices. She was rejected, despised, full of suffering and all too familiar with pain.
19 Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord.
- Romans 12:19 (NIV)
Pastor Peggy pointed out that the LORD had not forgotten about Leah. The scriptures make it a point to tell us that the LORD saw that Leah was not loved (Genesis 39:31). She may have been overlooked and neglected by those around her, but not by God. The LORD opened up Leah’s womb and she was able to conceive a child and more notably a male child! Surely this would make everything better. Yet, Pastor Peggy points out that in her heart, Leah was still trying to gain Jacob’s love and attention by any means possible, including through this first-born son. In fact, she gets pregnant two more times after this and each time she hopes that with that next child Jacob would will love her. She goes as far as naming each child according to the hope she has in gaining Jacob’s love.
To quote Tina Turner: “What’s Love Got To Do With It?” Everything! Although Leah was focused on Jacob’s love at first, she switched it when God blessed her with a fourth child. She named her fourth child Judah which means “Praise God”. Through it all, notice that Leah never had ill feelings towards her dad, Rachel or Jacob. She did not exact revenge. But the LORD did on her behalf. He repaid Leah all the wrong that was done to her and she was repaid through the covenant promise that God spoke to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
You see, Jesus comes from a specific lineage. He comes from the lineage of Abraham, Abraham’s son Isaac, Abraham’s grandson Jacob, and Abraham’s great grandson Judah. In fact, the scripture even refers to Jesus as the Lion of tribe of Judah: “Then one of the elders said to me, “Do not weep! See, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has triumphed. He is able to open the scroll and its seven seals.” (Revelation 5:5 NIV).
It was not a child of Rachel that the Messiah would come from, but of Leah. This is why the book of Isaiah says that Jesus is familiar to pain, rejection and being despised. It was in His bloodline. His pedigree would bring honor to Leah and give her and all world the love that she was denied. God never forgot her. He never forgot what she went through.
Do you realize that this is the same God that now stands by your side? What have you longed for in your life that you feel was denied? How have you been rejected? How have you been despised? Take comfort in knowing that Jesus sees and knows your plight. He hears the crying of your heart and feels your pain. Jesus is no stranger to what you are going through. He will repay everything that was taken from or denied to you. There’s one more thing, like He did with Leah, He will also bless your children, your grandchildren and the generations that come from them. Jesus will repay them what is also going to be prepaid for you. How truly wonderful, faithful, merciful, and worthy of all our praise is Jesus!
I thank You for Your suffering, Your rejection, the pain that You endured on the cross so that I could be redeemed. You set me free. You fill my life with hope and purpose. No matter what gets denied to me or taken from me, I will keep my eyes on you and I will continue to lift Your name up with praise and thanksgiving. Thank You all that You will repay me and my descendants after me. Holy Spirit, remind me of my Saviors faithfulness when I am tired, weak, confused, or hurting. Comfort me during these times by reminding me of all the times that Jesus has come through for me. AMEN!
Your servant in Christ,
I would like to give special recognition to Peter, from our Fire Starters LIFE Group, for bringing to my attention what the scripture says in Isaiah 53:3. Peter you are an amazing man of God and I thank Jesus that you are a part of Calvary Alameda.