It is expected that parents will bless their child. Every child craves for the blessing of the father. But a situation where rather than bless his child decided to curse him, something is wrong with that picture. Such was the case between Jacob and some of his children.
Gen 49:5-7 KJV 5 Simeon and Levi are brethren; instruments of cruelty are in their habitations. 6 O my soul, come not thou into their secret; unto their assembly, mine honour, be not thou united: for in their anger they slew a man, and in their self will they digged down a wall. 7 Cursed be their anger, for it was fierce; and their wrath, for it was cruel: I will divide them in Jacob, and scatter them in Israel.
Simeon and Levi are brothers,…. Not because they were so in a natural sense, being brethren both by father and mother’s side, for there were others so besides them; but because they were of like tempers, dispositions, and manners, they were both bold, wrathful, cruel, revengeful, and deceitful, and joined together in their evil counsels and evil actions, and so are joined together in the evils predicted of them:
Many of us crave for blessings but in this text Simeon and Levi were brothers and their father cursed them.
It was customary for a dying and aged father to call all his children and speak over them. Isaac did it for Jacob and now Jacob. This is what Jacob was doing at this time. What did they do to merit curses instead of the blessings?
While Jacob and his family were on their way back to his father’s house after so many years sojourn, Dinah the only girl among them went to flex and relate with the daughters of the land. In the process, she was flexed, raped and took away.
Even though the prince of Shechem came for negotiation, the children of Israel were not happy. So they tricked him into circumcision. When those guys were in pain, these two men Simon and Levi did the abominable:
Gen 34:25-31 KJV 25 And it came to pass on the third day, when they were sore, that two of the sons of Jacob, Simeon and Levi, Dinah’s brethren, took each man his sword, and came upon the city boldly, and slew all the males. 26 And they slew Hamor and Shechem his son with the edge of the sword, and took Dinah out of Shechem’s house, and went out. 27 The sons of Jacob came upon the slain, and spoiled the city, because they had defiled their sister. 28 They took their sheep, and their oxen, and their asses, and that which was in the city, and that which was in the field, 29 And all their wealth, and all their little ones, and their wives took their captive, and spoiled even all that was in the house. 30 And Jacob said to Simeon and Levi, Ye have troubled me to make me to stink among the inhabitants of the land, among the Canaanites and the Perizzites: and I being few in number, they shall gather themselves together against me, and slay me; and I shall be destroyed, I and my house. 31 And they said, Should he deal with our sister as with a harlot?
Their father was so afraid and panicked but he didn’t say anything at that time. It was while he was about dying that he remembered what the two guys put him through.
What was the outcome of their lives?
The pronouncement came to pass
Jacob pronounces a curse upon their anger, not because indignation against sin is unwarrantable in itself, but because their wrath was marked by deeds of fierceness and cruelty. “I will divide them in Jacob, and scatter them in Israel.” He does not cut them off from any part in the promised inheritance; but he divides and scatters them.
Consequence on Simon
That this prediction was exactly fulfilled Scripture testifies. At the second census in the wilderness, shortly before the conquest, the tribe of Simeon had become so reduced in its numbers (reckoning only 22, 000 as against 76, 500 in Judah) as to be the smallest of the twelve; (Num 26:14 ) to be passed over entirely in the last blessing of Moses; (Deu 33:0 ) to be accorded no independent allotment of territory in Canaan on the completion of the conquest, having only a few cities granted to it within the borders of Judah; (Jos 19:1-9 ) and to be ultimately absorbed in the more powerful and distinguished tribe under whose protection and tutelage, so to speak, it had been placed. (1Ch 4:27 )
Accordingly they are divided from one another in their after history, the tribe of Simon being settled in the southwest corner of the territory of Judah, and Levi having no connected territory, but occupying certain cities and their suburbs which were assigned to his descendants in the various provinces of the land.
They were also scattered in Israel. For Simon is the weakest of all the tribes at the close of their sojourn in the wilderness Num 26:14; he is altogether omitted in the blessing of Moses Deut. 33, and hence, obtains no distinct territory, but only a part of that of Judah Jos 19:1-9; and he subsequently sends out two colonies, which are separated from the parent stock, and from one another
What was the outcome of Levi?
Num 3:12 KJV And I, behold, I have taken the Levites from among the children of Israel instead of all the firstborn that openeth the matrix among the children of Israel: therefore the Levites shall be mine;
Num 3:45 KJV Take the Levites instead of all the firstborn among the children of Israel, and the cattle of the Levites instead of their cattle; and the Levites shall be mine: I am the LORD.
Deu 21:5 KJV And the priests the sons of Levi shall come near; for them the LORD thy God hath chosen to minister unto him, and to bless in the name of the LORD; and by their word shall every controversy and every stroke be tried:
What happened here? I thought their father cursed them? How did Levi break from the curse that himself and Simon were cursed with? How did he become the chosen of God? I discovered that between Gen 40 where their father pronounced curses on them and Num 3 where they became priests, something dramatic happened that changed the course of history.
Something happened in Ex. 32
Moses had gone to the mountain to receive the tablets of the law. He was there for forty days. The people waited and waited and were tired so they asked Aaron to make the god of golden calf. He made it and they were all worshipping it. When Moses suddenly appeared. He was furious and angry. He broke the two tablets. He now made a clarion call to all to make a choice whether they will serve God Almighty or the golden calf. Who is on the Lord’s side?
Exo 32:26 KJV Then Moses stood in the gate of the camp, and said, Who is on the LORD’S side? let him come unto me. And all the sons of Levi gathered themselves together unto him.
Whoever is on the Lord’s side; come to me : Moses gave the people of Israel the opportunity to make a stand for the Lord. The Levites, to their honor, sided with the LORD and with Moses. Sadly, they were the only significant group to come out and out for God’s cause at the golden calf incident.
It was only the men of Levi that came out though some of them still went into idolatry. Moses commanded them to kill anyone joined with idols. That very day they killed 3000men.
That singular choice and decision that the Levites made changed their lives forever.
Num 1:47-50 KJV 47 But the Levites after the tribe of their fathers were not numbered among them. 48 For the LORD had spoken unto Moses, saying, 49 Only thou shalt not number the tribe of Levi, neither take the sum of them among the children of Israel: 50 But thou shalt appoint the Levites over the tabernacle of testimony, and over all the vessels thereof, and over all things that belong to it: they shall bear the tabernacle, and all the vessels thereof; and they shall minister unto it, and shall encamp round about the tabernacle.
The formal appointment is only now made, in reward for their zeal Exo 32:26-29, though reference to their future office appears previously in Lev 25:32 ff, and they had already acted as assistants to the priests (compare Exo 38:21).
Because of their zeal for the Lord, they became priests of God. Curses were broken.
Their decision and choice broke the yoke of their father’s curse on them. You too can make a decision to serve the Lord.
Here is the good news. Under the New Covenant we don’t have to perform anything for the curses of the law to be broken.
The curses of the law is in Deut 28: 15-end and is summarized as poverty, lack, sickness, evil, barrenness, etc
Deu 28:15 KJV But it shall come to pass, if thou wilt not hearken unto the voice of the LORD thy God, to observe to do all his commandments and his statutes which I command thee this day; that all these curses shall come upon thee, and overtake thee:
The whole world has been concluded under the law and everyone that did not fulfill the whole law is cursed. He said cursed is anyone who did not do the whole law.
Deu 27:26 KJV Cursed be he that confirmeth not all the words of this law to do them. And all the people shall say, Amen.
No one is able to fulfil the whole law completely except the Lord Jesus.
Here is the greatest news of all time:
Rom 11:32 KJV For God hath concluded them all in unbelief, that he might have mercy upon all.
But under new covenant, things have changed
That Jesus had redeemed us from the curse of the Law when He hung on the tree. Gal 3: 13
Gal 3:13-14 KJV 13 Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is everyone that hangeth on a tree: 14 That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.
What it means is that we have been redeemed from the curses placed upon people that will not fulfil the whole law. We are redeemed from poverty, sickness, diseases, untimely death, mildew, unfruitfulness, etc.
Anyone that is not born again is still under the condemnation of the law but those that believe have been delivered from it.
Joh 3:18 KJV He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
Joh 5:24 KJV Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.
What should be our response?
Levi has to do something to be able to be free from the curse of his father by his zeal. But Jesus has done it for us. All we have to do now is to appreciate Him by our zeal to His kingdom by serving Him with all our hearts. Labour in the vineyard through prayers, evangelism, inviting people to church, visiting brethren, be kingdom addicted, give your time to the service, be available for the things of the kingdom.
Every evil pronouncement over my life and destiny is broken by fire now.