Sunday, February 20, 2011
Revelation 7 (Part 9) Gad
By Odon Bulamba (10th June 2005)
We saw last week that some of Jacob’s children were not included in Revelation 7. There is a reason for that. We also see that some of the children that were not Jacob’s children are in Revelation 7: Manasseh, and Nephtali. Manasseh was chosen but his brother was left out.
Gad means fortune, happiness
Born in 1875 BC and the seventh son of Jacob.
His Mother was Leah, meaning “cow”.
Let’s put that together: can a cow give birth to joy or happiness?
Cows can give birth to wealth through milk and meat.
But a cow can never look after a child’s safety for example, they are with us just to produce things we need in our lives.
Happiness was one of the things she produced. Although Jacob didn’t like Leah at the beginning, God put Gad into Leah’s stomach, so that through that young boy, joy could come into Jacob’s family.
Gad was a really good son. For example, when they wanted to kill Joseph, Gad kept quiet. Why? His role was to bring happiness in the family so here he just kept quiet. It was because the Word of God was supposed to be fulfilled.
In our lives today, we sometimes say that God is our joy, the Word of God brings joy in our lives. But at other times, we ask for happiness and we don’t receive it immediately. So why does God sometimes keep quiet when we cross a hard situation of sadness and we continue to suffer? Because through suffering we can get closer to God. If we lived a life of joy every day, it would sometimes be hard to remember God’s greatness or that God is able to deliver us from our distress, pain and to bring us back to joy. That’s why God will sometimes give us joy and sometimes He will take it away.
When Jacob blessed Gad, he also said something else: “you’ll be attacked”. If you think about your life every time you have joy, it’s only for a short time, joy is attacked by something and the next minute it’s gone. Whenever you’re happy it will just be for a short time, if you bring joy to people Satan will be allowed to come to you, attack you and shake it somehow.
God’s purpose is to strengthen your faith not to destroy it. Gad was told he’ll be attacked but he’ll attack back. He will destroy the heel of his attackers.
And what do the people of God do today when they lose their peace, their joy?
Answer: We sometimes complain, we hate our lives, we tell everyone about it or sometimes we are discouraged with God. Remember we have a power and this is not to cut off Satan’s hand or to kill the temptations but to bite the heel and if the heel is bitten, the whole body suffers.
So when you lose your joy, the only secret is to say:
“God, I’m crossing a hard situation here, I’ve lost happiness and it doesn’t come from any type of medicine or doctor but from You. So, God help me overcome my distress.”
This is my own experience. A few days ago, I was so happy but then, someone put me somewhere uncomfortable. They told me it will be for an hour only but I stayed there for six hours, just waiting. And I said: “Oh, my God, where is my joy?” And because I didn’t have patience, I started to feel a bit sad and to judge the people who put me there. Negative ideas started to fill my mind and condemn people. Then something came to my head: “Rejoice in the Lord”.
Thank God for this and tell Him you’re happy because you’re there and ask him to give you that spiritual joy more than the physical one. Through the spiritual joy, the joy from the Holy Spirit, we can become over comers. Thank God every time and start a new life in the Kingdom. But if you worry about things around you at every moment, you might get crazy, because everything will make you lose your joy.
Today people’s salvation is shaken because of a lack of joy. They forget to pray and keep their joy forever. It’s like the Holy Spirit. We all have it, but we sometimes do things that are not led by the Holy Spirit. We just forget Him, we don’t remember He is among us, in us and we’re walking with Him and do everything with Him.
God has called us to have victory. This victory is not to give up. People will fight against you but don’t give up, stand up on your feet and say you’re not the one who is fighting but God is the one fighting. “I’m not the one crossing a temptation, I’m not the one crossing sadness, if I say I open my life to Jesus, why shall I suffer then?”
Every time I’m crossing a hard situation, I say: “God we agreed on something, I gave to you my life and you said that you and I will be one, you said you died for me and paid the price of everything, why am I crossing such situation then? If you paid the price, why do I have to suffer?” and this is how I can get joy and strength and God really helps me. This is my experience.
Other people will do something different and they’ll get support from it. For example, some get happier whenever they have money. If I give Ange $20,000 now, she’ll smile on the spot even if she were angry just seconds before, she’ll start praising God straight away, God is so great! Even if she had small problems in her house, she’ll forget them.
So if we remember God is our provider and He gives to us things that are better than money, we’ll never be shaken. God gives us something priceless and more important than my life. Let’s remember it and be happy!
Imagine you are sick, you are the 300th patient on a waiting list and you hear the specialist is coming to Hamilton in two years only, you’ll feel disappointed straight away, and think you’ll be dead by the time you can be treated. You might complain about the health system in NZ although your complaining will change nothing to your situation. But if you remember prayer can heal, you can always commit the problem to God, it will be faster than waiting for the doctor.
“God, can you wake up and do something for me?”
Although Gad was strong and was told the victory is his by biting the heel, he used to forget. In the Bible you’ll see he was lazy, forgetting his victory, forgetting he was the one supposed to bring joy. When his descendants visited a country filled with giants, they were scared and afraid to go. They were supposed to encourage others, to be strong and bring back victory but they were full of fear. “Don’t fear!” is written in the Bible 365 times. So every day you can tell yourself not to fear. If I don’t fear I can become victorious but if I’m fearful, my fear will turn my strength into weakness. Strong people can lose their strength because of fear and become really weak, and when weakness comes, happiness goes. Remember if you’re happy even in a hard situation, your happiness will help you make it and reach your goal.
Gad was a simple person, chosen by God from the beginning but he destroyed himself later because he didn’t have the courage to do things. Lack of courage is something really bad in Christian life.
Be courageous in any circumstances even if you don’t know what tomorrow holds for you. Say:
“God, I trust in you, you know better than me. I can’t lose my faith or my joy just because I don’t know what’s for me tomorrow. Never. I know you’ve got a plan for me.” And God will do it.