Jacob Blesses Joseph (2)

The message of the story is that God is working, directing all that happens, but that his presence and his involvement in Joseph’s life is largely hidden. God is working behind the scenes.
And that is the case in our lives as well. God directs our lives. We know that from the Bible. But God’s presence is usually not obvious. We do not see God. We know that he is at work directing our lives and the whole of history because the Bible tells us so. We only know that he is at work in our lives and in history by faith – faith in the words that God speaks to us in the Bible.
— Rev. Jerry Hamstra

Jacob Blesses Reuben

Those with weak characters are unstable
in their inner beings and so winds of temptation or foolishness push
them this way and that. Those with strong characters are steadfast and
stable who are not easily deflected from what is right and what is wise
and what is godly. In the context of the Bible we must understand these
differences in the light of sin and grace. We are all weak by nature, but
Jesus died so that those who trust in him might be gradually changed to
be people of strong character who have learned self-denial and self-control and to “walk by the Spirit” and are learning “not” to “gratify the
desires of the flesh” (Galatians 5:16).
— Rev. Jerry Hamstra

Joseph and the Famine

The message of the Bible is never – you can do it if you try hard enough. God never says to us, “You can do whatever you set your mind to.” But he does say, “With man it is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God.” And he does say “His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness.”
— Rev. Jerry Hamstra