WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 9
SCRIPTURE: Genesis 18
By: Jeremy Witt
There are two big moments in chapter 18 that we will focus upon. The first moment deals with fulfilling the promise of God to Abram in Genesis 12. Abram and Sarai have already taken matters into their own hands with Ishmael as we discussed in earlier chapters, but the intended fulfillment is soon to come. The second moment is a story of grace of Abram interceding for any those are holy and righteous in Sodom and Gomorrah. Both moments show us some key elements of the character of God.
Verse 1 begins with the LORD appearing to Abram. Abram saw the LORD. But this causes us to wonder, because John 1:18 tells us that “No man has seen God at any time.” This is what theologians call a “theophany.” This is the appearance of Jesus Christ in bodily form in the Old Testament. His appearance is key as it supersedes the fulfilled promise of God to Abram in Genesis 12.
Go to verse 14 and read, “is anything too difficult for the LORD? At the appointed time . . .” As Christ followers, we are a people of faith. Our faith is in Him and in His will, but life has a way of turning our eyes off of Him. This verse is a great reminder for us. What we can learn from this moment in time is that God is true to His word. It may not be in our time, but we can trust Him for the perfect timing in His will. What is it that you are waiting on from the LORD? Continue seeking and trusting Him. Remember the many moments in Scripture when people waited on the LORD. Do not lose heart. Keep the faith. You may want to read a list of some of the people who lived by faith in Hebrews 11 for a reminder.
In verses 18-19, we see a reminder of God’s promise to Abram and the LORD sharing with Abram what is about to come for Sodom and Gomorrah. Abram’s guests are there to investigate what they have heard that the city is “exceedingly grave” (NASB) or “their sin is so flagrant” (NLT) in verse 20. Once hearing this, Abram begins the process of asking some difficult questions of “what if.” Was it Abram changing God’s mind or was it the LORD showing Abram His grace and mercy? Abram knew God was just and that sin must be punished, but in this passage Abram discovered more of the heart of God. 2 Peter 3:9 “The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.”
God is faithful. He is true to His Word. We can trust Him and trust in His timing. Even if things do not make sense in our understanding, we can remind ourselves of Abram and Sarai’s example that nothing is too difficult for God.
We need to be like Abram when he asked the LORD to save the holy and righteous even if there are only 50, 45, 40, 30 or so on. We need to be interceding on other’s behalf. We need to be praying for them, and we need to be seeking the LORD.