Sunday, 1st August 10.30 am Order of Service

WELCOME

HYMN Bless the Lord (10,000 reason) Matt Redman

Bless the Lord, O my soul

O my soul

Worship His holy name

Sing like never before

O my soul

I’ll worship Your holy name

The sun comes up, it’s a new day dawning

It’s time to sing Your song again

Whatever may pass, and whatever lies before me

Let me be singing when the evening comes

Bless the Lord, O my soul

O my soul

Worship His holy name

Sing like never before

O my soul

I’ll worship Your holy name

You’re rich in love, and You’re slow to anger

Your name is great, and Your heart is kind

For all Your goodness I will keep on singing

Ten thousand reasons for my heart to find

Bless the Lord, O my soul

O my soul

Worship His holy name

Sing like never before

O my soul

I’ll worship Your holy name

And on that day when my strength is failing

The end draws near and my time has come

Still my soul will sing Your praise unending

Ten thousand years and then forevermore

Bless the Lord, O my soul

O my soul

Worship His holy name

Sing like never before

O my soul

I’ll worship Your holy name

Jesus, I’ll worship Your holy name

Lord, I’ll worship Your holy name

Sing like never before

O my soul

I’ll worship Your holy name

Jesus, I’ll worship Your holy name

I’ll worship Your holy name

PRAYER

READING Genesis 48:1-22

Some time later Joseph was told, “Your father is ill.” So he took his two sons Manasseh and Ephraim along with him. 2 When Jacob was told, “Your son Joseph has come to you,” Israel rallied his strength and sat up on the bed.

3 Jacob said to Joseph, “God Almighty appeared to me at Luz in the land of Canaan, and there he blessed me 4 and said to me, ‘I am going to make you fruitful and increase your numbers. I will make you a community of peoples, and I will give this land as an everlasting possession to your descendants after you.’

5 “Now then, your two sons born to you in Egypt before I came to you here will be reckoned as mine; Ephraim and Manasseh will be mine, just as Reuben and Simeon are mine. 6 Any children born to you after them will be yours; in the territory they inherit they will be reckoned under the names of their brothers. 7 As I was returning from Paddan, to my sorrow Rachel died in the land of Canaan while we were still on the way, a little distance from Ephrath. So I buried her there beside the road to Ephrath” (that is, Bethlehem).

8 When Israel saw the sons of Joseph, he asked, “Who are these?”

9 “They are the sons God has given me here,” Joseph said to his father.

Then Israel said, “Bring them to me so I may bless them.”

10 Now Israel’s eyes were failing because of old age, and he could hardly see. So Joseph brought his sons close to him, and his father kissed them and embraced them.

11 Israel said to Joseph, “I never expected to see your face again, and now God has allowed me to see your children too.”

12 Then Joseph removed them from Israel’s knees and bowed down with his face to the ground. 13 And Joseph took both of them, Ephraim on his right toward Israel’s left hand and Manasseh on his left toward Israel’s right hand, and brought them close to him. 14 But Israel reached out his right hand and put it on Ephraim’s head, though he was the younger, and crossing his arms, he put his left hand on Manasseh’s head, even though Manasseh was the firstborn.

15 Then he blessed Joseph and said,

“May the God before whom my fathers
Abraham and Isaac walked faithfully,
the God who has been my shepherd
all my life to this day,

16

the Angel who has delivered me from all harm
—may he bless these boys.
May they be called by my name
and the names of my fathers Abraham and Isaac,
and may they increase greatly
on the earth.”

17 When Joseph saw his father placing his right hand on Ephraim’s head he was displeased; so he took hold of his father’s hand to move it from Ephraim’s head to Manasseh’s head. 18 Joseph said to him, “No, my father, this one is the firstborn; put your right hand on his head.”

19 But his father refused and said, “I know, my son, I know. He too will become a people, and he too will become great. Nevertheless, his younger brother will be greater than he, and his descendants will become a group of nations.” 20 He blessed them that day and said,

“In your name will Israel pronounce this blessing:
‘May God make you like Ephraim and Manasseh.’”

So he put Ephraim ahead of Manasseh.

21 Then Israel said to Joseph, “I am about to die, but God will be with you and take you back to the land of your fathers. 22 And to you I give one more ridge of land than to your brothers, the ridge I took from the Amorites with my sword and my bow.”

SERMON Ephraim and Manasseh blessed

When we look at the early account of Abraham’s family, the blessing of the father is passed along to the next generation. Two features stand out. First, as earlier, it was the younger son, Ephraim, who was blessed as the firstborn rather than the older, Manasseh (v. 19).

Second, the blessing is surpassed by the blessing of Jacob in ch. 49.

Curiously, Judah rather than Joseph ultimately gained prominence among his brothers.

From Judah comes the house of David, and from David comes the Messiah.

1-4 As soon as Jacob saw Joseph and his two sons, he was revived, and he prepared to give God’s blessing to the house of Joseph. Jacob remembers God’s promise to him at Bethel (35:9-13)

Namely: that God had “blessed him.”

And also : God’s promise “I will give this land . . . to your descendants after you” (cf. 35:11). But he has added “as an everlasting possession.” Only one other time is the promise of the land called an “everlasting possession” (17:8; cf. 13:15).

5-7 Ephraim and Manasseh were taken into the family of Jacob and were to be treated as his own.

8-14 The blessing of Ephraim and Manasseh is told in great detail. Before Jacob went on to speak to his 2 grandsons, specifically in blessing them, Joseph interrupted him, attempting to get his father to place his right hand on Manasseh rather than Ephraim, thus giving the right of the firstborn to Manasseh, the older son. But NO!

15-16 Jacob’s blessing is a storehouse of key themes. God is identified as the “God before whom my fathers Abraham and Isaac walked.” At two earlier points in the book, the faith of the earliest patriarchs is described as those who “walked with God” (5:22, 24; 6:9).

God is also described as the “God who has been my shepherd all my life to this day” and as the “Angel who has delivered me from all harm.” It is unusual that God himself should be described as “the Angel.”

The grandsons are to be called by Jacob’s “name” and the “name” of Abraham and Isaac, just as God had promised Abraham: “I will make your name great” (12:2). They were to “increase greatly,” just as God had promised Abraham, “I will make you into a great nation” (12:2).

17-20 Ephraim, the younger son, was given prominence over Manasseh.

This issue of prominence is meant to address the larger question that receiving the blessing offered by God does not rest with one’s natural status in the world. On the contrary, it is based solely on God’s grace.

21-22 Throughout these accounts Jacob has been pictured, not as a man of “sword and . . . bow,” but as “a quiet man, staying among the tents” (25:27). Now, suddenly, on his deathbed, Jacob revealed another picture of himself as he bequeathed to Joseph the portion of land he had taken by force.

AND SOthis is not the first time we have seen blessings being pronounced – indeed the Book of Genesis is all about God’s blessings – in Creation, then in blessings one man and his family – God’s blessings come through that family to US – our God has been blessing since the start of time: to the end.

PRAYER

Hymn The Blessing UK

The Lord bless you

And keep you

Make His face shine upon you

And be gracious to you

The Lord turn His

Face toward you

And give you peace

As we receive, we agree, amen

Chorus —

Amen, amen, amen

Bridge —

May His favor be upon you

And a thousand generations

And your family and your children

And their children, and their children

May His presence go before you

And behind you, and beside you

All around you, and within you

He is with you, He is with you

Original Song “The Blessing” by Cody Carnes, Kari Jobe and Elevation Worship.

Written by Chris Brown, Cody Carnes, Kari Jobe and Steven Furtick

Benediction

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