Gen 4:1-2, 8-10   personal responsibility for individual members of our family  

Gen 12:1-3   Now YHVH said to Abram, “Get out of your country, from your family, and from your father’s house, to a land that I will show you.  I will make you a great nation; I will bless you and make your name great, and you shall be a blessing.  I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you; and in you all the families of the Earth shall be blessed.”  

Ex 19:6   the House of Jacob/ the Children of Israel shall be a kingdom of priests

1Pt 2:9-10   Christians (those who believe in the Lord Jesus Christ) are a royal priesthood, a holy nation  

Jer 31:9 (8 Heb)   YHVH God a Father to Israel

Gal 4:6   God the Father to all who have the Spirit of Messiah in them  

Rev 5:9-10   from out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation  

All of us were born into a particular family: our kin, our relatives.
All of us were born into a particular people/ethnic group: our culture.
All of us were born into a particular state:  form of government, our citizenship.
None of us had any choice in these:  God did; maybe our parents did for us.  

Some of us here have chosen to live in Israel, to identify with another people/culture/state, especially those of us who are not Jews or citizens.  Others of us are here because we believe God has placed us.  In any case, each of us as individuals belongs to an ever larger grouping:  family, tribe, people, state.
   –baby dedication which brings all the family and the congregation into a caring role for the new child
   –honor one’s father and mother
   –school system which helps educate and train individuals and corporate groups to sustain the system
   –legal courts to deal with ‘disobedience’ to the laws and/or customs of the society, just as discipline is to lovingly carried out by parents in their own family  

We speak of Israel as a family.  We speak of the church as a family.  Even as this ‘extended’ family, we have obligations to other nations/families; to other congregations/families.  

God is calling out individuals out from every tribe, tongue, people, nation, and is adopting us into His family:  God is our FATHER; Jesus is our BROTHER; we  become CHILDREN OF GOD and BROTHERS AND SISTERS.  God’s family is a great nation!  

We are being made a Kingdom of Priests who will govern sympathetically with Messiah in the ‘world to come’, when Jesus returns to bring the Kingdom of God the Father to this Earth and the whole of this creation.  Each of us has something to prepare for as we serve the Lord now, since He has a purpose for us in His Kingdom.   

As YHVH God first called Abram, the Lord told him that He would bless him so that Abram and his descendants – and all of us who believe in the Son of God are children of Abraham by faith – would bless others.  This certainly begins in our own immediate families, our own people, our own state.  For believers, whom God has called out from the world, we are to bless those of the household of faith first – to honor one another in our own relationships in God’s great family.  

This greatly enlarges our view and responsibility and liberty; for now, with Jesus, God’s family, God’s people, God’s government embraces the whole world which He created and made, and we are to care about it and be a blessing wherever we are, in our cities, in our neighborhoods, in our workplaces, in our schools, in our country, on our continent. 

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