The Curious Story Of Jacob’s Blessing Over Gad.

Mark 4:36-39

“Now when they had left the multitude, they took Him along in the boat as He was. And other little boats were also with Him. And a great windstorm arose, and the waves beat into the boat, so that it was already filling. But He was in the stern, asleep on a pillow. And they awoke Him and said to Him, “Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?”
Then He arose and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, “Peace, be still!” And the wind ceased and there was a great calm. But He said to them, “Why are you so fearful? How is it that you have no faith?” And they feared exceedingly, and said to one another, “Who can this be, that even the wind and the sea obey Him!”

Ever heard the phrase, “The Old Testament is the New concealed and the New Testament is the Old revealed?” This story of an event in the life of Jesus is one of the most perfect examples of that fact. You will see by the end of this story why this article, which begins in the Gospel of Mark, reveals the true meaning of Jacob’s blessing over his son, Gad, which was more that a little strange. 🤔

Specific Intent.

At the end of the fourth chapter of Mark is an amazing story of Jesus commanding the wind and waves to be still, an awesome testimony of His power, authority, and above all, His love for His own. ❤️

Jesus was laser focused on traveling the entire length of the Sea of Galilee, heading toward the region of the Gadarenes.  It was so called because the tribe of Gad had been allotted this land when Israel began to occupy their promised land.

He was going there for a specific intent:  To rescue a poor, hopelessly demon-possessed man who lived among the tombs there.  This unnamed man had been in the clutches of a legion of demons for many years.  A legion is more than 6,000, folks!  In fact it’s somewhere between 6-9,000! Yikes!  He was unquestionably THE MOST demon-possessed man of all time! 😳

A Great Windstorm. 

Jesus was on His way; NO! He was making a B-line, directly across the Sea of Galillee when seemingly out of nowhere, “a great windstorm arose,” the account says.  It “arose” alright…with more than a little help. Those demons that possessed this man were roiling up the waters in an effort to sink the boat to stop Jesus. 👿 They knew He was coming for them.

{Yawn} You can see how “concerned” Jesus was about the storm and what devil was trying to do. HE WAS SOUND ASLEEP IN THE STERN OF THE BOAT ON A PILLOW!  🤔 That’s because He is never taken aback by anything the enemy is doing.

His disciples, on the other hand, were terrified!  The boat was rapidly filling with water and they were afraid it would founder. So, they rushed over to wake Jesus up.  He arose in response to the cries of His loved ones and rebuked the wind.  All He said was one word in Hebrew:  “SHALOM.”  Afterward it says in the Greek text that there was a “MEGA CALM.”

Notice what stirred Jesus into action.  It wasn’t the storm, the wind, or the waves, and it sure wasn’t the demons behind it.  No.  He responded to the cries of His loved ones.  Even though they should have been unafraid because Jesus was in the boat with them, that did not stop Him from rescuing them. ♥️ That’s our Jesus!!!  Oh how He loves us!!!

Shakey Faith.

After Jesus calmed the storm, the disciples were even more frightened than before!  “But He {Jesus} said to them, “Why are you so fearful? How is it that you have no faith?” And they feared exceedingly, and said to one another, “Who can this be, that even the wind and the sea obey Him!” Mark 4:40-41.

He was utterly amazed at their response because they had seen countless miracles, multitudes healed of every kind of disease, had a front-row seat as crowds of people were fed from 5 loaves of bread and 2 tiny fish the size of sardines!

These things didn’t just happen one time, mind you.  The Bible records that He did so many miracles that there are not enough books in the world to contain an account of them all!  He was very often quite incredulous at their tiny faith!   But it was only a gentle rebuke in the most kindly way.  He wasn’t angry with them, not in the least.

New Hidden In The Old.

Jesus did countless miracles yet the Holy Spirit has only recorded 33.  Why?  In order to paint very clear, specific pictures for us of this wonderful Jesus!  Was He angry at their disbelief?   No.  He was actually quite amused that they were shocked when He calmed the storm with one word.

The Old Testament, or covenant, is like an expanded view of the New, where spiritual principles, teachings, and doctrines are expounded upon.  It serves as sort of a “pictionary,” describing the above things in greater detail in story form.  It’s like watching a play that teaches you things about Jesus.

Jacob’s Blessing Over Gad.

Amazingly, this event was foretold in one of the blessing Jacob spoke over his sons.  Have you ever read all of them?  Some are more than a little strange, particularly the one he spoke over his 7th son. 😳

Gad, like his brother, Benjamin, must have thought Dad had a screw loose when he heard the following words recorded for us in Genesis 49:19. “Gad, a troop {a legion} shall tramp upon him, But he shall triumph at last.” 😲

A troop shall what??? A troop, or legion, is about 6,000 men! What kind of a “Blessing” do ya call that? 🫤

Prophetic Elements.

Hmmm…..6,000.  Now where have we seen that number before?!  Oh yes; that’s the number of demons in that possessed man, the Gadarene Demonaic!  You see, there are prophetic elements in all Jacob’s blessing over his sons.  The Holy Spirit is painting beautiful pictures of Jesus for us again!  Isn’t God good?!

He was actually prophesying about an event in the distant future in the life of our Savior while He was here on earth where a poor, demon-possessed man, who was beyond anyone’s help, would be rescued.  

No one could control this guy.  He was violent and a danger to himself and others.  Why, he could be bound with chains and break them as though they were tissue paper! 😮

NO ONE Is Beyond Hope.

Lest anyone, believer or not, feel that they are beyond redemption or that they’re too far gone, do you think you could ever be worse off than this demoniac?  In order to be possessed by that many demons, he had obviously “dabbled” a whole lot of the bad things of this world for a very long time.

At last, however, he got so tangled up with evil that NO ONE COULD HELP HIM. No one, that is, but Jesus.

Sons and daughters, people of the world, Jesus LOVES YOU!  He knows each and every one of you and calls you BY NAME. You are not a meaningless, inconsequential entity to Him.

I promise: If you call out to Him, He will make a “B-line” toward you too, just for the asking.  It doesn’t matter what your problem is, how seemingly hopeless the situation you’re either in right now or how bad you’ve been.  He will redeem you out of it, even if it’s of your own making.

Just like the father in the story of the Prodigal son, when he saw the errant young man afar off, he hiked up his robes and ran SWIFTLY to him.  How did he see him “Afar off?”  HE HAD BEEN CONSTANTLY on the lookout for him!

That’s our Heavenly Father.  He’s on the lookout for ways to bless, protect, and heal you.  Whatever your need, He’s more than willing to meet it.  Just ask Him!

END RESULT.

Look at what happened after this man was  delivered:  He went and preached the Gospel in 10 cities!  I guarantee you MANY came to believe in Jesus because of his incredible story.

Tell Your Story.

That’s it, folks.  That’s how we reach the world with the wonderful news of the Gospel.  If you already know this wonderful Jesus then you, like me, have been no doubt been delivered from many things.  If not, all you need to do is ask Him to save you and to redeem you out of it.

Then do like this formerly demon-possessed man:   Go.  Tell someone else your story.  Tell them about YOUR JESUS.  Tell them what He did for you and how good He is! I can guarantee you this:  Somebody out there needs to hear your story.

And now you know the meaning of the curious blessing of Jacob over his son, Gad.

The blessing of Jacob over his son, Asher, is a portrayal of something quite surprising: An event in the earthly life of our Lord Jesus!

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