The Scepter Shall Not Depart from Judah

Brian Mahon - 12/25/2022


Call to worship: Revelation 5:1-14 (Advent reading on Christ, with prayer)

Text: Genesis 49:8-12


Genesis is critical, foundational to our whole-Bible understanding of Jesus Christ. As we approach the end of the book, Moses brings various Christ-centered promises to bear upon a future King from Jacob's family and, more specifically, of Judah's line. Echoing Genesis 3:15, this descendant will be the serpent-crushing Lion-King. Echoing Genesis 12:1-3, He will establish God's everlasting Kingdom, as well as its global and regenerated citizenry; and there is no chance that He will fail to achieve the purpose for which God sent Him into the world. His Vineyard will be abundantly blessed. As He reappears in Revelation 5, He is the Sovereign of history and of God's redemptive plan. He will surely bring it all to pass to the praise and worship of God in Christ. Let all His citizens rejoice and take heart. The scepter shall not depart from the Lion of the tribe of Judah.

Sermon Outline:

  1. The fighting King of Judah---and His victory.
  2. The everlasting King of Judah---and His subjects.
  3. The harvesting King of Judah---and His sovereignty.


Discussion Questions:

  1. Read Genesis 49:8-12.
  2. Think back on the first three sermons in this series. How does each contribute to the context and, therefore, supply a richer understanding of these verses? When reading the Bible, it's important to learn to keep the narrative intact.
  3. In 49:8-9, what is unexpected and why? Should we expect this blessing to be given to Judah? How does this narrow the focus concerning the promise of Genesis 3:15? How has it narrowed already in Genesis? Do you see a connection between Genesis 3:15 and 49:8? As this seed of Judah will be a Lion, is He safe? How is it that Christ is both Lamb and Lion? Will it do one well to fight Him to the death?
  4. In 49:10, the divine prerogative of Christic royalty is bestowed upon Judah. How does that come to pass in David? How is it, however, not finally fulfilled in David? What is the duration of Christ's kingdom? What is the scope (think 12:1-3)? What is the great mark of His loyal subjects? How should obedience to Christ confront the way we live, the way we evangelize, the way we think about the goal of the Gospel?
  5. In 49:11-12, the King has a Vineyard. He's an Overseer. And a successful one. What's implied by His washing His garments in the blood of grapes? Will His harvest, His labors prove slight or even abortive? How does the achievement of His task and its sure abundance in the world bring comfort to your soul, our church, our labors, etc. if and when they seem to have seasons that fall short of expectations? Shall the scepter ever depart from...Jesus?
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