Passages: Genesis 12-22
As we read through the story of Abraham we see God’s plan for his people and the world.
God Plan for his people:
- God called Abraham to follow him and God would bless him making him into great nation (people and land).
- God would bless the nations of the world through Abraham’s people.
Here we see God’s love and faithfulness in his interaction with Abram.
Verses 1-6 Family
- God encouraged v1
- Abram questioned v2&3
- God gives more encouragement with an affirmation v4 and an example v5
- Abram believed v6
Note in verse 6 that Abram is viewed as righteous in God’s sight because he believes that The Lord will fulfil his promise of a son and many descendants. Abram is reckoned righteous on account of his faith in God’s promise, rather than any deeds performed by him.
Verses 7-20 Land
- Again God encouraged v7
- Again Abram questioned v8
- So God made an oath v9-20
God unconditionally guarantees that Abram’s descendants will possess the land of Canaan, the oath isn’t dependant on the acts of Abraham or his descendants. God alone passed through the animals (represented by the imagery of fire and smoke), therefore God alone took on obligations, Abram remained a passive spectator.
In chapter 16 we see that even though he had faith still Abram took matters into his own hands.
So God make another covenant this time Abram has obligations.
Genesis 17:1 When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the LORD appeared to him and said, “I am God Almighty; walk before me and be blameless.
- Walk blameless before the Lord God v1
- Circumcision v9&10
In this covenant we see the blessing of the nations in v4&5
4 “As for me, this is my covenant with you: You will be the father of many nations. 5 No longer will you be called Abram ; your name will be Abraham, for I have made you a father of many nations.
Only God could fulfil his side of the covenant 16 we see that even though he had faith still Abram took matters into his own hands.
God’s final test of Abraham shows us Abraham’s total faith in God, here he trusts in God’s way and promises and God is faithful. This story points us to God’s ultimate plan to bless the nations through Abraham’s family.
Genesis 22:15 The angel of the LORD called to Abraham from heaven a second time16 and said, “I swear by myself, declares the LORD, that because you have done this and have not withheld your son, your only son, 17 I will surely bless you and make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as the sand on the seashore. Your descendants will take possession of the cities of their enemies, 18 and through your offspring all nations on earth will be blessed, because you have obeyed me.”
Here the offspring is singular and it points us to Jesus.
Acts 3:24 “Indeed, all the prophets from Samuel on, as many as have spoken, have foretold these days. 25 And you are heirs of the prophets and of the covenant God made with your fathers. He said to Abraham, ‘Through your offspring all peoples on earth will be blessed.’ 26 When God raised up his servant, he sent him first to you to bless you by turning each of you from your wicked ways.”
In verse 14 Abraham called place The LORD Will Provide. What is the significants of this.
As we journey through the Bible let us ask, how does knowing this help me to become wise for salvation through faith in Jesus?
- What does it teach me?
- How does it rebuke me?
- Is it correcting something in my life?
- What training can I put into place to help me live a righteous life?
- How is this equipping me for every good work?
Additional questions you may wish to consider for personal study or in Life Groups.
As I reflect what have I found interesting?
As I reflect what has challenged my life, attitudes and actions?
Is there one practical step I can apply to my life to help me to become more like Jesus?
How would this help me to introduce others to Jesus?
Is there there anything I need to pray about, explore further or extra help I need?
Is there someone I should share with, pray with or encourage?