Cover 2015-07-19

Ron Writes

Brotherhood

Going through Genesis we have noticed a lot of families behaving badly. Some of the saddest portions of the Bible are stories of families that couldn’t get along with one another. From Cain who killed his brother to Joseph’s brothers who contemplated killing him. The Bible is written in the blood of brothers.

There are also a few noble acts by siblings. Joseph forgave his brothers. When Moses felt inadequate, God sent his brother Aaron to help. Rahab hid the spies, but she also had a special request; she wanted her parents and brothers and sisters to be spared as well. When Jesus came, Andrew found his brother Peter.

There is something special about brotherhood.

“There’s a friend who sticks closer than a brother” (Prov. 18:24). When the wise man is emphasizing friendship the model he uses is brotherhood. The text assumes that brothers will be close. “….a brother is born for adversity” (Prov. 17:17). A brother is someone who will be there for you through thick and thin. In the Old Testament the bonds of brotherhood were so strong, that if a man died without children, then his brother would marry the widow and the firstborn would carry the deceased brother’s name. Brotherhood denotes allegiance, camaraderie, unity and support.

When my dad was younger, he was a truck driver. He belonged to the union. The union was called the “International Brotherhood of Teamsters.” They referred to one another as “brothers.” A union friend of mine was fired unjustly, but as he left the job, all his union “brothers” walked away too. After a management adjustment, they were all back to work before the end of the day.

Brothers stand up for one another.

The appeal of the New Testament is that within the church we are all brothers and sisters. We have a common Father in God. Jesus is our brother. It is wonderful to be part of a church that is so supportive of one another and is characterized by “brotherhood.”