Discord Between Brethren

March 26, 2002 PM
Pastor Chris Abernathy
Columbus, Georgia

If you would, turn in your Bibles with me to the book of Genesis chapter thirteen. Genesis chapter thirteen. We were in Genesis on Sunday. Glory to God. And we’re going to start out in Genesis tonight. Amen. Praise the Lord. And beginning with verse one. It says,

1. And Abram went up out of Egypt, he, and his wife, and all that he had, and Lot with him, into the south.

2. And Abram was very rich in cattle, in silver, and in gold.

3. And he went on his journeys from the south even to Bethel, unto the place where his tent had been at the beginning, between Bethel and Hai;

4. Unto the place of the altar, which he had made there at the first: and there Abram called on the name of the LORD.

5. And Lot also, which went with Abram, had flocks, and herds, and tents.

6. And the land was not able to bear them, that they might dwell together: for their substance was great, so that they could not dwell together.

7. And there was a strife between the herdmen of Abram's cattle and the herdmen of Lot's cattle: and the Canaanite and the Perizzite dwelled then in the land.

8. And Abram said unto Lot, Let there be no strife, I pray thee, between me and thee, and between my herdmen and thy herdmen; for we be brethren.

9. Is not the whole land before thee? separate thyself, I pray thee, from me: if thou wilt take the left hand, then I will go to the right; or if thou depart to the right hand, then I will go to the left.

Let us pray.

Most holy and graciously heavenly Father, we thank You for who You are and for what You do. Father, hide Your son behind the cross, that Your people would see You and not me. And Father, as I decrease, I ask that You would increase. I thank You for anointing me to preach the Gospel, oh God. And let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Thy sight, oh Lord, my strength and my Redeemer. In Jesus’ Name, amen.

You may be seated in the house of God.

There was a strife that came up between Abram’s herdsmen and Lot’s herdsmen. Who can tell me tonight the definition or a definition of what strife is? What is strife? Come on, all you Bible scholars. Hallelujah. What is strife?

Confusion. Amen. Strife is confusion. What else is strife? I’m sorry? Agitation. Hallelujah. Agitation. That’s good also. What else is strife? Anger. Amen. One more. What else is strife? Envying. Praise the Lord.

There came a strife between them. There came up a quarrel and fight between them.

You see, we as people, as human beings, we are naturally territorial. You see, even when we go to certain places, we will lay down our things at a certain place to let everybody know that this is my territory, and don’t you come in my... Oh, my God. Don’t come into my territory.

And what happened between them was that the land was not big enough to hold all of them. So everyone wanted to claim that part as their territory. But what happened was, they forgot that they came to that territory together. My God, my God. Oh, I feel the Holy Ghost.

You see, we have got to continue with the understanding that it’s not my territory. It’s not your territory. But it’s our territory. It doesn’t matter who got there first. We’re all going to receive the same thing. Oh, my God, my God.

You see, if we allow that territorial instinct to rise up in us, there’s bound to be strife. There’s bound to be confusion. There’s bound to be agitation. There’s bound to be anger. Hallelujah. Do you hear what I’m saying tonight? There’s bound to be envying.

I’ve got to realize that He’s called us to unity. You see, they were family. You can’t tell me that family can’t dwell in the same land. But sometimes the can’t. If you remember back in chapter twelve, He told Abram to get thee up and get away from your kindred. Why? Because God wanted to do a new thing with them.

But instead of Abram getting up by himself, he wanted to take somebody with him. It was Abram’s fault from the beginning. God said get away from those that you’re familiar with.

See, if I follow God halfway, I’m going to have problems. But if I listen to instruction, and I follow instruction, then all things are going to work out together for my good, not at just the end, but at the beginning.

The Bible said...(tongues)...that there arose a strife between them. They forgot that they came together. In the body of Christ it’s the same situation. We’re all brethren. Because even though Lot was Abram’s nephew, on later down in Genesis he called Abram his, I mean Lot his brother. So we are all brothers and sisters in Christ.

But too many times in the body we forget that we’re brothers and sisters in Christ. And we begin to say, “What’s mine is mine.” Oh, my God. Who am I preaching to tonight? We become possessive over what we have been appointed to. Do you hear what I’m saying?

We come into a place where we take ownership. But we cannot take ownership over what belongs to God. Do you hear what I’m saying? I’m not an owner of it. I’m a steward of it. That’s where stewardship comes in. I’m looking after what belongs to Him. And if I would have this revelation, my God, my God.

Let me tell you what we have to do in church. And I want you all to hear this message, because I’m talking to everybody. I’m talking to myself. You see, this pulpit don’t belong to me. It belongs to God. But He put me in place as a messenger, as an under-shepherd to bring for the message to His sheep. But at any time if God wants to move me and put somebody else there, I’ve got to give up that place, because it’s not mine. It’s not mine. This church is not mine.

They were brethren. But they forgot that they came there together.

That’s why the Lord told Joshua to set boundaries. Even though they were a people collective, He told Joshua to set boundaries. Why? Because we are territorial. And if somebody comes on my territory, it’s going to cause strife. It doesn’t matter about being family or not. We’re family, aren’t we?

Turn with me in your Bibles to Genesis chapter thirty-seven.

You want to know why people get upset about what other people do? Because they think it’s their territory. But it’s not. Hello, somebody.

In chapter thirty-seven. And we’re going to begin with verse three. It said,

3. Now Israel loved Joseph more than all his children, because he was the son of his old age: and he made him a coat of many colours.

4. And when his brethren saw that their father loved him more than all his brethren, they hated him, and could not speak peaceably unto him.

Let’s look at it like this. Every now and then you can see the favor that’s on somebody. Can’t you? And when we talk about the favor, we can talk about the Anointing. Because we believe the coat of many colors was different anointings.

And when we look at somebody and we see the different anointings that they have on them, we understand that God has shown favor on them. And instead of us loving them the way that we should love them, we become like Joseph’s brothers, and we begin to despise them. We begin to hate them.

The Bible tells me in Proverbs ten and verse twenty-two that hatred stirreth up strife.

So what happens is, when I begin to hate my brothers and my sister, I begin to stir up strife. Because hatred and strife, they travel together. And not only hatred and strife. If you don’t watch it, contention is going to get in the midst of it.

He had favor with his father. And they hated him for it. See, you’ve got favor with your Father, and the world hates you for it. (Tongues.) If you and I would get a revelation of who our enemy is... The world hates us. Because the Bible said that they hated Him.

But if the world love you, then you better check and see who you are in. That’s who should hate you. Your brethren should not hate you. Your sisters should not hate you. The world should hate you.

But it was his own relatives, his own blood. They hated him. And look at verse five.

5. And Joseph dreamed a dream, and he told...

I’m going to stop right there. Have you ever been in a position where you knew somebody hated you? You cannot tell me that Joseph did not know that his brothers hated him. You can’t tell me that. You can’t tell me that you can live in the same house with somebody and don’t really know how they feel about you. Oh, my God. Who am I talking to in this house?

He had to know that they despised him. But the Bible said that he had a dream, and then he told it. The first sign of immaturity. Immaturity can make strife arise. Being immature in making decisions and making sound judgment can cause strife in the body of Christ. It can cause strife. It can cause fighting and quarreling in the house.

So he went on to tell them the dream, knowing that they hated him. He said that, “We were in the field, and we were bundling sheaves together.” In other words, “We were binding our wheat together. But then my wheat stood up. And then your wheat bowed it’s knee to my wheat.”

Wait a minute. If somebody already hate me, do you think I’m going to tell them that they have to bow their knee to me? Oh, who are you talking to? It was a sign of immaturity. It was a sign of him being overconfident. It was a sign of him boasting about what was going to happen or what was going on in the dream.

Have you ever been around somebody that brags all the time? They don’t know why they don’t have no friends. They just think that everybody hate them. They hate them because they always talking about them. My God, my God.

“Did you see what I did? Did you hear what I did? Did you know where I went? Do you know where I’m going?” They’re never talking about you and where you’re going and what you’re doing and what somebody got to say good about you. But the conversation is always about them.

They’re provoking their brothers to jealousy. And when someone get’s provoked to jealousy, immediately hatred is going to follow that jealousy.

He was immature. See, in order to get this, you got to read between the lines. He was immature in his judgment. I would allow God to be God. Wouldn’t you? You think I’m going to tell somebody that hates me about what God’s going to do with me? I don’t think so.

They’ll smile in your face, won’t they? And they’ll put a sword in your back. They’ll go and dig up your past, won’t they? And they’ll have your business all over the street. And you’ll be in front of folks preaching or teaching or whatever, and they be saying in their mind, “Uh huh. I know what you did.” They can’t even receive from you.

If I don’t use discretion, I can cause strife to come up. If you have been in this walk for a certain amount of time, then you’ve got to learn to use discretion. If you’ve got somebody that has not been in this walk as long as you have, you better watch what you say. And you better watch what you do.

Because what’ll happen is, you’ll begin to place a stumbling block in front of them. And woe be unto you. Oh, my God. You’ve got to get in the place where you can say what you need to say or do what you need to do without causing people stumble.

He was immature. In other words, he still was at a stage of development. He was at a stage of development, being developed. And because of his immaturity he had to go through all the things that he went through. Because he was so over-confident, he had to go through all those things that he went through.

God could have still got him to Egypt (Do you hear what I’m saying?) without him being sold to the... You know what I’m talking about. He got sold to the slave traders. There was another route. There’s always more than one route when you’re dealing with that situation. But if you’re coming to Jesus, you got to come in by the door. And there’s only one door and one Shepherd of the sheep. And His Name is Jesus.

But let me tell you something. He put himself in that predicament. Many times we are in a position and in a predicament where our brothers and sisters can’t stand us. And why? Because we done put ourselves there. Yeah, you are anointed. Yeah, you are appointed. But you done provoked somebody to jealousy.

You can wear the finest apparel. You can be the prettiest thing alive. You can be more handsome than Don Juan or whoever. But if you’ve got the wisdom of Solomon to go in and out of people, you’re not going to have to worry about folk. If they hate you, it won’t be because of your ego.

He was immature in his judgment. Then he had another dream. And he told his brothers again. I can just see them snarling by this time. I can see the steam going up from their heads.

He told them how even the stars and the moon and the sun bowed their knee to him. In other words, he was talking about the universe, not about God, but about everything in the heavenlies. I’m not talking about the third heaven. Do you hear what I’m saying tonight? I got to clarify.

So then his daddy... He told his daddy. And the Bible said his daddy rebuked him and said, “Do you think that I’m going to bow my knee to you?” But after what his son told him, the Bible said he still thought about that thing.

So his brothers were in the field with the sheep. And he was looking for his brothers. He comes up a walking. Can’t you see them all with their swords and daggers? They begin to plot to say, “What should we do to him?” One of them said, “Well, we should go ahead and kill him.”

See, if you get in a place with folk where they can’t really stand you, they’ll try to figure out a way to kill you. You act like you ain’t never seen or heard that before. They’ll do it in the natural in the world. But they’ll do it spiritually in the church.

But Ruben said, “No, let’s just put him down in the cistern.” In other words, “Let’s put him down in the well.” And the Bible said that there was no water in the well. So after he said, “Let’s do that,” and Ruben went away... Because Ruben had a plan to come back and get his brother. But when Ruben got back his brother was gone. He had been sold to the slave traders.

So they killed an animal and put the blood on his robe, and brought the robe back to his father. Say, “Isn’t this your son’s robe?” And the Bible says that his daddy began to mourn, that he ripped off his clothes and went down in ashes and sackcloth and mourned for his son. The Bible said his other children came to try to comfort him, but he would not even be comforted.

If I don’t use wisdom, if I am immature in my judgments, then I can cause strife to arise.

Tonight the Lord is speaking. Because some of us are old enough to know certain things. But we don’t look out for those that are younger than us in the Spirit. Do you hear me tonight?

I got to get in a place that I’m watching over them, to make sure that they don’t fall into a ditch. It’s not just the pastor and the elders that watch over folks. It’s everybody that got to watch over everybody. Because I am who? My brother’s keeper. Aren’t I? I am.

Using sound judgment. You may have a better idea than somebody. If you got a better idea, walk softly. If they got an idea, let them have their idea. Do you hear what I’m saying tonight? I got to teach this. I got to use sound judgment. I got to use sound judgment.

Strife goes all around the church. And it comes in the form of gossip. And it comes from saying, “Did you hear about so and so? Did you hear about such and so and such and such?” And it will begin to destroy. It will begin to divide. It will divide. It will divide.

Strife and discord are sisters. Conflict. They all run in the same pack. But we’ve got to get into a place in the Spirit where we are wise as serpents and harmless as doves. Wise as serpents and harmless as doves.

And to get into a place like that, it’s a place in prayer. Because prayer is where I get the wisdom. And prayer’s the place I get compassion. That’s what we’ve got to do. That’s what we’ve got to do.

So tonight... And everybody’s not here tonight. So all you your brother’s keeper. You need to call your brother and sister and say, “You missed it.”

And they going to say, “Well, what did I miss?”

“You missed the Word. You missed prayer.”

And there’s nothing that can be compared to that, getting into the Presence of the Lord.

The Lord gave me this message today. Earlier today I went to school. And on my way to school this morning I heard the word “discord.” And I meditated on it all day. So I looked it up. And I only saw like three different Scriptures on discord. I said, “Lord, I need more than that.” And he took me to discord’s sister, strife. And there was a whole list of Scriptures on strife.

So tonight if there be any discord or there be any strife and contention, envy, discouragement, whatever it is, leave it at the altar.

You know who’s most spiritual? Somebody that’s willing to say, “I’m sorry.” That’s someone that has reached a magnitude of maturity. When a husband and a wife have a disagreement, you know who always say they sorry first? The woman. Most of the time. I can’t say all the time. But most of the time. It’s something in them. It’s something in them to want that affection and that love to flow.

But let a sister and a sister have something. Can I go there? We going to see who claws are the longest, who’s are the sharpest, and who’s can move the fastest. Get in a place...

And it’s not just women and women. It’s men and men too, aren’t they? One man got to be something better than the other man. It’s always competition between men. And we may say it in a way where it seems like we’re not in a competition. But really if we could see the root... One want to out-preach the other. One want to out-sing the other. One want to be macho, macho than the other. We hitting these devils, aren’t we?

We got to get in a place where we squash all that. Say, “Look, we family. The family that prays together stay together.” Oh, yes.

So tonight if there be any discord, strife, agitation, confusion, anger, envy, whatever it is, conflict, let it go. Let it go. Let it go.

Come on, give God a handclap of praise.

Home | Local Ministry | Sermons | Prophetic Words
Ministry News | Photo Album | Contact Us | Affiliate Ministries

True Vine Ministries International · P.O. Box 12134 · Columbus, Georgia 31907

Designed by Revival Fire Web Designs

Copyright© True Vine Ministries International