God’s “Approach Present” is more than a gift…It’s an offering…TO US!

An “approach present” — that is, an offering — has a significantly greater importance and purpose in the scriptures than simply a “gift.”

When Jacob met Esau, many years after virtually stealing Esau’s birthright, he didn’t simply bring a gift. Jacob brought his estranged and rightfully angry brother an “approach present,” an offering to make amends for the ill will that Jacob’s actions toward his brother had caused. Here’s the brief exchange at their reunion:

If now I have found grace in your eyes, then you must take my approach present from my hand because I have seen your face as one sees the face of Elohim, and you are benevolent toward me. Please take my blessing gift that I have brought to you, for Elohim [God] has been gracious to me, and because I have everything. (Genesis 34:10-11, Concordant Literal Version – CLV)

Most translations (or versions) of the Bible only read, “present,” “gift,” or “blessing,” therefore missing the importance of “approach present.

The critical difference between Jacob’s approach present and blessing gift, and a mere present or gift — like a dad bringing a present to his son after returning home from a business trip — is that Jacob’s approach present was an act of humble, earnest offering. Jacob fell at Esau‘s feet with his face to the ground, pleading for grace from his brother, whom Jacob recognized as one whom he had wronged and who was more powerful than he. Jacob’s approach present was an offering he carried to Esau to somehow make up for the wrong he had done to his brother, who had every right to be angry enough to wipe Jacob out.

What does this have to do with us? Fast forward with me into Paul’s letter to the Ephesians, where the same distinction between approach present and gift is even more critical for us to grasp.

Most Bible versions render Ephesians 2:8 this way:

“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith, and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God…” (NIV)

That’s nice, but look at it from the Concordant Literal New Testament, translated directly from Greek:

“For in grace, through faith, are you saved, and this is not out of you; it is God’s approach present…”

We’ve already seen how an approach present is vastly more significant than a gift.

Now, for the first and only time in all of scripture, God — the Father — carries an offering to us: His grace that saves us through faith! Throughout the rest of scripture, the direction of offering was always the reverse: man always brought approach presents to God.

God’s approach present” has been virtually lost for nearly 2,000 years, relegated to a the status of a mere “gift,” which we toss around almost as casually as we ourselves give gifts to others.

The picture of God carrying an offering to human beings is unprecedented and confronts us with His love for us that is so determined that He offers not only His Son, but through Him, His favor — His grace — that saves us out of death and into life, through Jesus Christ’s faith and then ours.

God’s approach present is indeed a magnificent picture we would do well to hold before us constantly.

Chapter 10 of the book, GO GOD!, is devoted to the subject of “God’s Approach Present.”

Blessings and Joy in the journey.

Published by Scripture Doc

Author of GO GOD - Jump On Or Hang On, 'Cause God's Gonna Win!, and a REVENOUS student of the scriptures since 1972, it became clear to me that the original language translations (from Greek and Hebrew) didn't square with the English versions in significant ways...so significant, in fact, that people were once considered heretics for investigating what the original manuscripts REALLY said. The "heretic" label persists in some Christian circles today, when one's perspective calls traditional doctrines into question. Someone once said, "The odds of someone being right is directly proportionate to the number of people trying to prove him or her wrong." Since 1972, the operating principles that ultimately birthed the ScriptureDoc project are these: 1. The word of God was written for regular people, not just theologians...it has to make sense. For that matter God Himself must make sense, otherwise how can we know Him, and what benefit would there be in knowing Him? 2. When the word of God (or God Himself) doesn't make sense, it is our understanding that is lacking, not His word. We need to investigate, educate, expand, and adjust our knowledge, perception, and understanding. 3. The goal is to, "Endeavor to present yourself to God qualified, an unashamed worker, correctly cutting the word of truth." (2 Timothy 2:15) 4. Last one: "All scripture is inspired by God, and is beneficial for teaching, for exposure, for correction, for discipline in righteousness, that the man [or woman] of God may be equipped, fitted out for every good act." (2 Timothy 3:15-16) 5) OK, one more: "Request and it shall be given you. Seek and you shall find. Knock and it shall be opened to you. For everyone who is requesting is obtaining, and who is seeking is finding, and to him who is knocking it shall be opened." (Matthew 7:7-8) So . . .here's a forum where we look into what the word of God REALLY says, and what it REALLY means. IF you;re happy with what you've learned about God to date, this probably isn't for you; however, if you're open to what may be an alarmingly fresh perspective, jump on in. Join the live study (or by recording), called "Light Up The Scriptures" every Tuesday night at 8:00pm Eastern Time. Email me back for call-in details. Check out the book, "GO GOD! Jump On Or Hang On, 'Cause God's Gonna Win!" at www.Victory-Publishers.com

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    1. Thanks for your comment, Charlene. The Ephesians passage is unique in all of Scripture, the only time that the Father carries an offering to mankind, instead of the other way around. When taken in context with Paul’s revelation in Romans, where he declares, “we were once enemies,” it helps us recognize the truly profound offering of God’s grace by Him to change our “enmity” (albeit justified) into friendship. How much better is that relationship?