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  Tsiyon News

Tsiyon Messianic Radio Newsletter  - Vol 8.20 -  03/14/6013 TAM  -  05/24/13 AD

Eliyahu ben David Bet Midrash

Jacob Esau Encounter

Genesis 33

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The Jacob Esau Encounter

Jacob Esau Encounter

Jacob lifted up his eyes, and looked, and, behold, Esau was coming, and with him four hundred men ...Jacob .. bowed himself to the ground seven times, until he came near to his brother. - Genesis 33

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Listener Questions 

Listener Question - "not pray for the world” but "pray for kings" - what?
Hi Eliyahu, I would like your comments on what appears to me to be a disconnect between Jesus’ words that He ”does not pray for the world”, which certainly seems to mean all of this world’s systems including governments, authorities, etc. in the secular realm and the counterfeit religious systems; and Paul’s instructions to pray for all governments and authority figures whether they are good, evil or whatever. If Christ/Messiah doesn’t pray for them why should we? God certainly told the prophets to stop praying for Ephraim and others.
    Are there some mistranslations or misapplications in the texts that would clear this up? I think that people like Obama and his crowd are deluded dingbats…

Tsiyon Answer - "not pray for the world” but "pray for kings" - what?
I must say, this is a really excellent question regarding the difference between what Messiah said, that He does ”not pray for the world” and Paul’s instructions to pray for ”kings and all who are in high places.” These ideas do seem to be at odds with each other. Here are the two respective quotes:

”..I don’t pray for the world, but for those whom you have given me, for they are yours.” John 17:9

”I exhort therefore, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercessions, and givings of thanks, be made for all men: 2 for kings and all who are in high places; that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and reverence. 3 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior; 4 who desires all people to be saved and come to full knowledge of the truth.” 1Timothy 2:1-4

In John 17 Messiah is praying for all who put faith in Him of every age, whom the Father takes ”out of the world” (vs 15). In this long-term sense it would be useless to pray for the world because the world (world system) must come to ultimate destruction. This is why Messiah prays for those whom He has saved ”out of the world” since they will endure forever.

By contrast, Paul is speaking in a much more immediate sense, being concerned for people and believers presently living during his apostolic watch. The sort of prayer for ”kings and those in high places” that he advocates is for a purpose, namely, ”that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and reverence.” His real concern here is for the welfare of believers, so that the prayers he has in mind are in accord with that. In other words, that the king and those in authority not be allowed to do mischief or violence toward the believers. It seems that when ”deluded dingbats” are in charge such prayers are more needed, rather than less. Of course, we should pray for ”all people” to be saved, since this is the Father’s will, even though we know most will not accept that gift. When we consider the full context of Paul’s words, he is not advocating that we pray for the world system itself, but for people to be saved out of the world, and for world leaders to act in a way that allows the believers to live in relative peace. That intent is not at odds with Messiah’s words.


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From Eliyahu

Family can really get complicated sometimes. That is certainly true of Jacob and Esau. Who could be closer than twin brothers? And yet, from before they were born they struggled against each other as the worst of enemies. It got so bad, in fact, that Esau planned to murder his brother, causing Jacob to literally flee to a foreign land for his life. After twenty years away Jacob finally came back to the Land to face the wrath of his brother Esau once more.  In our latest midrash we consider that encounter between Jacob and Esau as found in Genesis 33. Here, "Esau ran to meet [Jacob], embraced him, fell on his neck, kissed him, and they wept." Surely, this means that after twenty years apart the war is over between the brothers and all is well, right? ...Wrong, as a deeper consideration of the text will reveal.     

Blessings and Shalom!   

Eliyahu ben David 

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