Proverbs 17:17, “a friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for a difficult time.”
We always feel our brothers and sisters will stand by us no matter what. But is it really true? Can we really depend on them in times of adversity?
Well seeing the condition of world today, we feel brothers are the ones who create more troubles for us. When we need them, they aren’t anywhere to be found. Rather they are the ones who stab us behind our backs. Most of the time, we are fighting against them for our rights.
It makes us wonder, where was the genesis of enmity between brothers?
Let’s consider a few scriptures.
Adam(first man God created ) and Eve( first woman created by God), were blessed with two children in the beginning, ‘Cain and Abel’ (Genesis 4:1-2).
Cain’s offerings (fruits of the ground) God had no respect for (since it wasn’t covered by BLOOD, as God saw it), but Cain’s anger fell on Abel, which eventually led to Abel being killed by Cain (Genesis 4:8, 1 John 3:12). Abel’s righteousness exposed Cain’s ungodly ways. Cain couldn’t handle it and rose up against Abel and murdered him.
Another example of brothers we find in the sons of Isaac, ‘Esau and Jacob’ ( Genesis 25:22-23).
Brothers were wrestling even while in womb. When they took birth, the younger one was born ‘grasping the heel of the elder one’ (Genesis 25: 26). Brothers did not relate well. Natures were completely different from each other. One was a skilled and cunning hunter, other was a plain, quiet man who dwelt in tents.
Genesis 27:28-29 records, how Jacob(younger one) tricked his brother Esau’s blessings as a first born from old and almost blind Isaac, who was battling with old age problems, which resulted in Esau’s fury against his brother Jacob. Esau wanted to kill Jacob ( Genesis 27:41).
Isaac blessed Esau as this, ‘ ….by your sword you shall live and serve your brother’. (Genesis 27:40). It was not only a family feud, but also a prophesy for generations to come. It was to cost countless lives in the coming years. Esau’s descendents the Amalekites, were the first enemies who obstructed the flight of Jacob’s descendents from Egypt (Exodus 17:8). Edomites refused to let their uncle Jacob’s children to pass though their land ( Numbers 20:17-20).
(Shash Grewal (Shashwati) is a “Scriptural Motivational Writer, who explain’s life’s, common principles, in a very lucid manner so that the younger generation can relate to the solutions, she offers through her writing, to all the problems they face on a daily basis.)
Bloody battles were fought between the two nations for centuries to follow.
King Herod ( a descendent of Esau’s race, got all the male children of Bethlehem killed, in an attempt to get child Christ killed (Mathew 2:16).
A ‘mere family quarrel’ between two brothers, resulted in much bloodshed over a period of time.
Another story of brother’s relationships could be seen in the story of Joseph in Genesis 37. Joseph was favoured by God in everything. He was a dreamer and also was his dad’s favourite child.
We feel if we are favoured by God and loved by parents, we are naturally blessed. But the truth is, we also become a reason for others to envy us which attracts much hatred from others.
Joseph was a seventeen year old lad, wasn’t doing much work and a bit immature, inexperienced as far as human relationships were concerned . He thought if he shares his dreams with his family, especially brothers, who were his age group, they will understand him and feel happy for him. But the truth was, his brothers hated him. In Joseph’s case, his mouth got him into trouble.
His brother’s jealousies towards him led to eventual selling of Joseph to Ishmaelites for twenty pieces of silver( Genesis 37: 28), and taken a captive into Egypt. Another case of brother’s feud that led to much unhappiness, trials and unpleasant situations in the coming days.
(Shash Grewal(Shashwati) is a scriptural Motivational Writer, Speaker, Spiritual Teacher, Preacher and an Evangelist.)
Even in our lives, we end up doing mistakes, at times major sins. Then later stages of life, we do realise that what we did in immaturity, was a mistake and sin in the sight of God, but by that time it’s too late to undo anything. We have to live with it for the rest of our life, and at the back of our minds, ‘I wish’ I could change the situation’ feeling keeps haunting.
Reasons for confusions in relationships could be many. Soul sickness, complex (a feeling of unworthiness) , inclinations towards wrong ideas and concepts, bad attitudes, parent’s partiality towards some kids, counselling with ungodly ideas and many more.
Whatever the reason s are, God wants us whole and complete. God is the epitome of love. His love surpasses all human understanding. It’s His love for us that doesn’t punish us according to our sins. It’s His love for us that convicts us in our spirits and brings us in closer fellowship with Him.
God first touches our spirits with His Spirit. That’s where He begins the good work, by touching the centre of our being.
Conviction comes in our spirits.
A healthy body is a combination of a ‘healthy mind, healthy spirit and a healthy soul’. Our bodies tend to follow the lead of our souls and our souls take the lead of our spirits. If one is suffering, the rest will suffer too. So we cannot leave our minds and spirits unhealthy if we genuinely wish to be healthy. But that’ s a tall order. We cannot deal with these, on our own strength. God has to intervene. It is absolutely impossible without God’s intervention. We have to give every area of our lives to God. Including our relationships.
God knew man’s heart from the beginning of creation!
God has already made a way!
Titus 2:14, “ Who gave Himself for us to redeem us from every lawless deed, and to purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds.
Ephesians 1:7, “In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace”.
So how do we go about it?
First things first!
Proverb 4;23 exhorts us to guard our hearts ‘with all vigilance’. It literally means, we have to keep examining our hearts, minds , thoughts on a regular basis. We have to wisely ‘CHOOSE OUR THOUGHTS, ACTIONS, WORDS AND ENSURE WE HAVE A HEALTHY ATTITUDE TOWARDS LIFE AND PEOPLE.” SATAN WILL KEEP TRYING TO FILL OUR MINDS WITH BAD IDEAS AND WRONG THINKING. WE SHOULD NEVER FALL PREY TO HIM. WE ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR OUR THOUGHTS AND ACTIONS.
Secondly, knowing the fact that “ Christ offered Himself as a willing sacrifice for the sins of the world (Isaiah 53:4-6) “ helps us come into a relationship with God. In God there is no darkness. In Him there is only light. His light reveals truth about His love for us and also help us in a right living with Him (Trust me it’s a great feeling and a huge relief, to think that when our sinful actions are uncovered in the presence of God’s light, Christ is there to intercede for us on our behalf in front of God).
Thirdly, we should never “ hate instructions and discipline, and despise reproof. We should obey the voice of teachers (God and godly counsels we are blessed with), and submit and consent to those who instruct us with godly advice (an adaptation from Proverbs 5:12-13).
And lastly, build ourselves with God’s word . It gives us better perspective on life).
‘For the ways of man are directly before the eyes of the Lord, and He (Who would have us live soberly, chastely and godly) carefully weighs all man’s goings. (2 Chronicles 16:9, Job 31:4, 34:21, Proverbs 15;3, Jeremiah 16:17, Hosea 7:2, Hebrews 4:13).
We have to be on guard every minute
(“”The writer has been a Cover page Model for various fashion magazines , anchored various musical shows for youth Channels and a (short film) filmmaker for Discovery Channel. Currently busy writing her own book””)