Beginning his Mother’s Day sermon, Pastor Phyl talked of how there are many, many notable mothers in scripture, but the one that God told him to preach on was Rebekah.
Often, in life, we deal with injustices. There are many different miscarriages of justice that happen on a daily basis. Pastor Phyl asked us if we have ever been blamed for something that we haven’t done. This can be a very painful experience, and we can be left feeling that life isn’t fair.
The thing is that everyone deserves fairness and love. We are supposed to be operating in fairness and love all of the time. We are called to love everyone, even our enemies.
We are, however, naturally selfish. Thinking about photos, Pastor Phyl asked us who we always look for first in a group shot – ourselves. We love it if we look good in photos of ourselves.
Turning to scripture, and the story of Rebekah in Genesis 25:19-34, Pastor Phyl told us that we must always be aware of how we read scripture, and must not misinterpret it, taking certain parts literally when they are not meant to be, and likewise, not taking other parts literally when they should be.
In this passage, we read about Rebekah, the wife of Isaac, who was barren for many years, before becoming pregnant. When the children were born, the eldest, Esau was red and covered in hair, and Jacob was born clutching his brother’s heel.
With their children, Isaac and Rebekah both showed favouritism to a different child, with Isaac favouring Esau, and Rebekah favouring Jacob, the younger son. The thing is that we mustn’t have favourites. We are meant to love all people the same.
In culture, we are used to being treated fairly, but in some cultures, this isn’t the case. There is a tradition of birthrights, in some cultures, which would automatically give the man the priority over women, simply based on gender. Esau had a birthright, but he gave it away, and so, ended up despising it.
Pastor Phyl then went on to say that he had three points to give us in closing, which seeked to define the “crazy little thing called love” that God has for us.
- God’s love is unconditional. There is nothing we can do to make God love us any more. We can’t earn His love, nor can we lose it. There is also nothing we can do to make Him love us any less. God gives us endless chances. Pastor Phyl encouraged us to live a life of loving unconditionally; to give love and respect freely, even if that is not how we are, ourselves, treated.
- God’s love is unchanging. He will never tell us anything different. He will never turn away from us. His love is the same today, yesterday, and tomorrow. He loves us always.
- God’s love is unmeasurable. His love cannot be measured, or contained. It will never run out. God’s love is always running over. It is, to quote the song, an “overwhelming, never ending, reckless love”, which we can put our complete trust in.
Pastor Phyl then encouraged us at the end of his sermon to simply love on one another passionately, like God loves on us.
Scriptures: Genesis 25:19-34