People You Should Know: Abraham, Isaac,  Jacob, and Joseph

People You Should Know: Abraham, Isaac,  Jacob, and Joseph

In the Old Testament, we find 4 very important people: Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph. Here is a brief overview of what we can learn from them.

Where can I find their stories?

Abraham: Genesis 11-25

Issac: Genesis 17:15-35:29

Jacob: Genesis 25-50

Joseph: Genesis 30-50

What are they known for?

Abraham:

  • Had faith that pleased God
  • “Father” of the Jewish People
  • Well respected in the land and was known for protecting family at any cost
  • Known for Great Hospitality
  • He was a wealthy land owner with much livestock

Isaac:

  • Miracle child born to Abraham and Sara in old age
  • First descendant in fulfillment of God’s Promise to Abraham
  • Twin sons, Jacob and Esau: Isaac favored Esau and tried to move the line of God’s Promise through Esau
  • Nearly sacrificed on Mt. Moriah (Calvary in the NT) as part of a test of faith

Jacob:

  • Father of the 12 Tribes of Israel
  • Worked 14 years to marry Rachel
  • Shrewd business man

Joseph:

  • Sold into slavery by his brothers and then rose to become ruler in Egypt
  • Well known for personal integrity

Was there a major failure

  • Under pressure from foreign leaders, Abraham distorted the truth
  • Isaac played favorites between his sons and alienated his wife
  • Jacob tended to try to rely on his own resources instead of seeking help from God
  • Joseph’s youthful pride caused problems with his brothers

What lessons do they teach us

Abraham

  • God desires dependence, trust, and faith in Him
  • God chooses a people as a channel to reveal Himself

Isaac

  • God’s plans and promises are larger than specific people
  • God remains faithful even though we are faithless

Jacob

  • All human actions, good or evil, are woven into God’s plan and under his control
  • Security does not lie in our own wealth but in God

Joseph:

  • Life’s circumstances do not, per se, matter but our response to them is of great importance
  • No matter what situation we find ourselves in, God is Sovereign and in control

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