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009-joseph-jacob300x225When the children of Israel go down to Egypt to live, they were only 70 in number. That might seem like a lot for one family, but when viewed against the great mass of the Egyptian nation who would be their new neighbors, Jacob’s family must have felt small and insignificant. Even more than that: strangers, foreigners; out of place.

Yet God has a way of making His people fruitful. He blesses us and ensures that we continue to grow and increase in strength — both outwardly and inwardly. He blesses us with physical offspring, but even if we don’t have these to boast of, He still pours out His blessing on us — on we who seem so few, the flock of His hand and sheep of His pasture. We, too, continue to grow and attain new strength, even as He continues to bless us. His Holy Spirit ensures that we will bear the fruits of the Spirit, and continue to advance in the faith He has planted deep in our hearts, and in the hearts of our children. He nourishes us and is the strength of our hearts and our portion forever.

So take heart. You are not insignificant, for He sent His Son to die for you — even though you are only one. His love extends that far — even to you! Even though we who love the truth are too often a tiny band, whose continual efforts to be faithful and live according to the truth seem to be frustrated at every turn, in Christ we know differently. We are a little flock, to be true, but we are part of a far greater and more glorious body — His Body, the holy Christian Church. He has made us part of it, and we are His. To Him be all glory and praise, amen.

Now these are the names of the children of Israel, which came into Egypt; every man and his household came with Jacob.

Reuben, Simeon, Levi, and Judah,

Issachar, Zebulun, and Benjamin,

Dan, and Naphtali, Gad, and Asher.

And all the souls that came out of the loins of Jacob were seventy souls: for Joseph was in Egypt already.

And Joseph died, and all his brethren, and all that generation.

And the children of Israel were fruitful, and increased abundantly, and multiplied, and waxed exceeding mighty; and the land was filled with them.

— Exodus 1:1-7