Posted in 365: Barbara Thurston
5.27.15 Well today is Ernest birthday and so I thought I'd talk a little bit about Ernest since God put us together, and birthdays were in the Bible so we'll take a look at that also. I met Ernest in Stafford Co. VA, I moved there to stay with my sister Louise and I got a job @ the Shell station, Ernest sister in law worked there and so that's how we met. We met in June and got married that same year in November.
Birthday celebrations are mentioned in the Bible on three separate occasions and, in each case, something terrible occurred. These three accounts bear brief examination.
The first account is in Genesis. Pharaoh, the Egyptian king, celebrated his birthday by executing his chief baker (Gen. 40:1-23). God gave Joseph special understanding of a dream by Pharaoh’s butler and baker, that the baker would lose his life three days after Joseph interpreted the dream. Joseph understood that Pharaoh would use this occasion—his own birthday party—to put his baker to death. As the dream had foretold, the baker was hung at the party.
Genesis 40:1-23 The Cupbearer and the Baker
40 Some time later, the cupbearer and the baker of the king of Egypt offended their master, the king of Egypt. 2 Pharaoh was angry with his two officials, the chief cupbearer and the chief baker, 3 and put them in custody in the house of the captain of the guard, in the same prison where Joseph was confined. 4 The captain of the guard assigned them to Joseph, and he attended them.
After they had been in custody for some time, 5 each of the two men—the cupbearer and the baker of the king of Egypt, who were being held in prison—had a dream the same night, and each dream had a meaning of its own.
6 When Joseph came to them the next morning, he saw that they were dejected. 7 So he asked Pharaoh’s officials who were in custody with him in his master’s house, “Why do you look so sad today?”
8 “We both had dreams,” they answered, “but there is no one to interpret them.”
Then Joseph said to them, “Do not interpretations belong to God? Tell me your dreams.”
9 So the chief cupbearer told Joseph his dream. He said to him, “In my dream I saw a vine in front of me, 10 and on the vine were three branches. As soon as it budded, it blossomed, and its clusters ripened into grapes. 11 Pharaoh’s cup was in my hand, and I took the grapes, squeezed them into Pharaoh’s cup and put the cup in his hand.”
12 “This is what it means,” Joseph said to him. “The three branches are three days. 13 Within three days Pharaoh will lift up your head and restore you to your position, and you will put Pharaoh’s cup in his hand, just as you used to do when you were his cupbearer. 14 But when all goes well with you, remember me and show me kindness; mention me to Pharaoh and get me out of this prison. 15 I was forcibly carried off from the land of the Hebrews, and even here I have done nothing to deserve being put in a dungeon.”
16 When the chief baker saw that Joseph had given a favorable interpretation, he said to Joseph, “I too had a dream: On my head were three baskets of bread.[a] 17 In the top basket were all kinds of baked goods for Pharaoh, but the birds were eating them out of the basket on my head.”
18 “This is what it means,” Joseph said. “The three baskets are three days. 19 Within three days Pharaoh will lift off your head and impale your body on a pole. And the birds will eat away your flesh.”
20 Now the third day was Pharaoh’s birthday, and he gave a feast for all his officials. He lifted up the heads of the chief cupbearer and the chief baker in the presence of his officials: 21 He restored the chief cupbearer to his position, so that he once again put the cup into Pharaoh’s hand— 22 but he impaled the chief baker, just as Joseph had said to them in his interpretation.
23 The chief cupbearer, however, did not remember Joseph; he forgot him.
In the second account, the New Testament figure Herod the tetrarch reluctantly ordered the beheading of John the Baptist (Matt. 14:3-11). Notice verse six: “But when Herod’s birthday was kept…” During the dancing and merry-making at his birthday party, Herod got carried away and eventually made a promise that he did not want to keep. As a result, a great servant of God lost his life.
Matthew 14:3-11 Now Herod had arrested John and bound him and put him in prison because of Herodias, his brother Philip’s wife, 4 for John had been saying to him: “It is not lawful for you to have her.” 5 Herod wanted to kill John, but he was afraid of the people, because they considered John a prophet.
6 On Herod’s birthday the daughter of Herodias danced for the guests and pleased Herod so much 7 that he promised with an oath to give her whatever she asked. 8 Prompted by her mother, she said, “Give me here on a platter the head of John the Baptist.” 9 The king was distressed, but because of his oaths and his dinner guests, he ordered that her request be granted 10 and had John beheaded in the prison. 11 His head was brought in on a platter and given to the girl, who carried it to her mother.
The final account is found in the book of Job. The Bible says that Job’s seven sons “went and feasted in their houses, every one his day; and sent and called for their three sisters to eat and to drink with them” (Job 1:4) His sons used to hold feasts in their homes on their birthdays, and they would invite their three sisters to eat and drink with them. These parties were obviously not centered around any kind of celebration related to God, or Job would not have worried that his children may have sinned during these celebration feasts. He was not exactly sure what was going on in their minds, but the very celebration of their birthdays triggered great concern in him (1:5) When a period of feasting had run its course, Job would make arrangements for them to be purified. Early in the morning he would sacrifice a burnt offering for each of them, thinking, "Perhaps my children have sinned and cursed God in their hearts." This was Job's regular custom. Apparently, during the birthday party of Job’s oldest son, God allowed Satan to kill all 10 of Job’s children through what appears to be a tornado (vs. 6-13) 6 Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan also came among them. 7 The LORD said to Satan, “From where do you come?” Then Satan answered the LORD and said, “From roaming about on the earth and walking around on it.” 8 The LORD said to Satan, “Have you considered My servant Job? For there is no one like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, fearing God and turning away from evil.” 9 Then Satan answered the LORD, “Does Job fear God for nothing? 10 “Have You not made a hedge about him and his house and all that he has, on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land. 11 “But put forth Your hand now and touch all that he has; he will surely curse You to Your face.” 12 Then the LORD said to Satan, “Behold, all that he has is in your power, only do not put forth your hand on him.” So Satan departed from the presence of the LORD. (18-19) 18 While he was still speaking, another also came and said, “Your sons and your daughters were eating and drinking wine in their oldest brother’s house, 19 and behold, a great wind came from across the wilderness and struck the four corners of the house, and it fell on the young people and they died, and I alone have escaped to tell you.”
Well reading these birthday celebrations in the Bible God didn't want people celebrating birthdays, with each acct. people died during the celebration. We don't usually have a big celebration for birthdays, we may get together and have dinner or something but that's about it. I know a lot of people go out and have a drink or something to celebrate, even though we don't drink some people do but I urge you if it hinders your witness you shouldn't take that first drink. I think God may get upset with us sometimes when we celebrate because we are taking our eyes off Him instead of worshiping Him. Especially if there are people out there that may celebrate to the point of not knowing what they did that night and I would pray if you are a Christian you don't do that and if you do I pray God will take it away so that you don't hurt your witness. How are we to witness to people if we are under the influence of other stuff besides God's Word. I will say that I think God does like it when we have gathering so that we may be able to share with those who may not go to Church to hear His Word. So when you celebrate your birthdays make sure Jesus comes into the subject.
God I come to you and i think you for putting Ernest and I together till death do us part. I think you for our 3 kids and I even think you for allowing me to have some time off from work to get some stuff done that needs to be done. God I will wait on you to give me the job you have chosen for me because I know you are a part of that also. I'm glad you are a part of my life because I know life without you would be miserable. God be with my facebook family and friends and know that I love you. I ask these things in Jesus Name Amen