When Brother Sam Davison was here, he preached a message using the life and character of Jacob. He worked on a contrast between what he called “the Jacob life” and the “Jesus life.” Using the Beatitudes from Matt. 5-7 he reminded us of the characteristics of our Saviour which we ought to be emulating, versus the characteristics of Jacob, “the supplanter” which we ought to try not to be like!
Jacob was the ultimate pragmatist…one of those who says, “Let’s just do whatever seems to work.” Jacob had his earned PhD in the “Manipulative Arts.” Brother Davison suggested seven characteristics of the “Jacob life.”
- Self-promotion – carnal ambition
- Callousness to sin – loss of sensitivity to sinfulness
- Using your strengths to take advantage of others
- Operating as though right is relative
- Being insensitive to hurting others
- Playing both sides to the hope of your advantage
- Defensive of self
Jacob lived, by the most part, by the carnal “wisdom of this world,” as de- scribed in James 3. We are called by God to rather, live by the wisdom from above, the wisdom of God’s Word.
James 3:14-18 But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth. This wisdom descendeth not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish. For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work. But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy. And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace.