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10 Rosensteinstraße
Böblingen, BW, 71032

We are an Assemblies of God church serving English speaking community in Stuttgart, Germany.

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Devotional

November 15, 2018

Matthew Leighty

Read Genesis 28:1-9

It took some time, but in the end, we see Isaac finally come around to God’s plan of carrying on the promises through Jacob, not Esau. While the first blessing of his youngest son was compelled through deception, here we see the patriarch freely offer his blessing. It might be easy to miss this detail sandwiched in between such a compelling story around it. Just before this, we see Esau seething in anger, wanting to kill his twin brother. And just after this we read of Jacob’s first encounter with God during his travels. But we have much to learn from Isaac’s blessing here.

Yes, Isaac made a mistake earlier in attempting to bless Esau despite God’s revealed will for Jacob to be the one to carry on the family covenant. And yes, his family was divided and in strife. But here we see the patience and grace of God. God continued to work on Isaac’s heart and gave him time to obey. And God is just as patient and gracious with us in our slowness and disobedience.

What disobedience do you need to confess to God today? Repent and thank God for His grace and patience toward you.

November 14, 2018

Matthew Leighty

Read Genesis 27:30-46

A common criticism of the church is that it is full of hypocrites. Backstabbing, deception, lying, and pride can be on full display. A lack of concern for humanity can also exist. And this can cause us to wonder how God could ever use the church. How can God use such broken people to bring His will to pass and glorify Himself? Perhaps you have wondered that even about yourself.

Yet the more we study Scripture, the more we discover the problems we have today are the same problems people have had for millennia. And more importantly, we discover in ourselves the same troubles that we see in those surrounding us.

But as we read through the story of Scripture, we also see that God used these people, as broken and sinful as they were, and we walk away with the confidence that He can and will use us for great good and for His redemptive purposes. God still uses us to bring blessing to this world, not because of who we are but because of who He is.

In what ways do you feel as if God could not use you? How have you seen Him use you in surprising ways?

November 13, 2018

Matthew Leighty

Read Genesis 27:18-29

Rebekah and Jacob’s deception causes many to wonder whether or not God condones deceptive behaviors when done to achieve godly purposes. God had planned to pass the blessing along to Jacob instead of Esau all along, and in Esau, we see a man who didn’t show any inclination to value it or show any desire or plan to carry on with the covenant of God. Yet Isaac seemed intent on ignoring God’s plan and blessing his oldest son. Were the lies of Rebekah and Jacob, then, part of God’s plan, or did He merely use their lies to bring His will to pass?

While this is a compelling theological question with various explanations offered, rarely will we find ourselves in a position where it appears that deception would be best. Even Jacob and Rebekah could have chosen a different path. We have no record of them trying to reason with Isaac and exhorting him to follow God’s plan. While God’s ways at times may be unclear, what is clear is that God calls on us to live holy and blamelessly before Him and others.

How has God blessed your holy and blameless obedience to Him, even if it was difficult?

November 12, 2018

Matthew Leighty

Read Genesis 27:1-17

As we read through the Bible, we see time and again how God designed the family to be the primary building block of the community of faith and society as a whole. The husband-wife and parent-child relationships are the two most vital human relationships, only increasing in importance when we understand how they each parallel our relationship with God.

But as we turn the pages of Scripture, we also see time and again the brokenness of families—the most important relationships often cause the deepest heartache and pain. We have seen this on full display in Isaac’s family, with this passage, perhaps, being the pinnacle of this family’s struggle.

It can be easy for us to look at the bigger picture of how God used this family—even through their adversity—to fulfill His promises and glorify Himself. That is certainly true, but at the same time, we need to step into this family’s pain with them. We have to remember these were real people who were part of a real family falling apart at the seams. We need to remember this because it is the shared reality of so many families today—perhaps even your own. We have to remember that God’s ideal for the family and what we might experience are often driven apart by sin—ours and/or others’. But at the same time, we must remember that reconciliation is at the heart of the gospel—reconciliation between us and God, but also between spouses, parents and children, and siblings in broken families.

Where do you yearn for God to bring healing and reconciliation in your family or within other close relationships around you?

November 9, 2018

Matthew Leighty

Read Genesis 26:12-35

The Lord appeared to Isaac twice in Genesis 26. In verses 1-6, God gave him direction during the famine, and His appearance and reassurance of His promises first made to Abraham anticipated what follows in the narrative: Isaac lied about his wife because he was afraid for his life, even though God had just reminded him that He would be with him and bless him.

The second appearance by God followed Isaac’s deception and a conflict over wells with the herdsmen of Gerar. This time when the Lord appeared to Isaac, He comforted him. Isaac did not have to be afraid; God was with him and would bless him. God’s timing reveals His graciousness and mercy in His dealings with us. We might expect God to have come in discipline—Isaac had lied and was struggling to find water. But He didn’t. He came with comfort and hope, reminding Jacob, and us, that His promises are based on His character, not ours.

How has God been gracious to comfort you, even in times when you did not deserve it?