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Genesis 18

DAILY DEVOTION

FOR

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.  

Posted by Jeremy Witt with 0 Comments

Genesis 17

DAILY DEVOTION

FOR

Tuesday, AUGUST 8

SCRIPTURE: Genesis 17

By: Josh Boles

Like most chapters in the Bible, especially the Old Testament, there is much to unpack in Geneses 17, and we have limited time together. There is a lot in this chapter that we could spend a great deal of time talking about. 

We could talk about the covenant of circumcision. This covenant’s purpose was to renew the covenant between God and Abraham. It was a physical mark to set aside God’s people, but there are some other things i would like to focus on.

This chapter opens up with God revealing Himself to Abram. What is interesting about this is that it has been a full thirteen years since God revealed himself to Abram. I imagine there are a lot of things Abram could have said, or a lot of different ways he could have reacted to the presence of God after thirteen years of silence but take notice to how Abram reacted.

After not hearing from God for thirteen years, he could have questioned him, as we sometimes do. He could have complained, as we sometimes do. In verse 3 it says that Abram fell on his face. 

There are a couple reasons we could come up with as to why Abram would fall on his face. First, it could be that he was overcome with the brightness of God’s glory. This is something we see quite a bit in the Bible. Moses could only look at the backside of God because his radiant glory would have killed him, and Paul was blinded by God’s glory.  Second, it may have been that he was ashamed of his sin and simply fell before his glorious Lord. 

Neither of those two reasons would be a bad reason to fall on your face before the Lord, but I think Abram was simply worshipping God. Even in the midst of the thirteen years of silence, Abram still trusted in the promise of God. Even while Abram and Sarai grew impatient and took matters into their own hands Abram was able to worship God. 

I think we can learn a lot from Abram here. Are you able to worship even in the tough situations? Are you able to worship when it seems you have been distant from God and are longing and hurting to hear from him? Can you truly rest on the promise of God When things don’t seem to go your way. Abram did, and great things started to happen. 

In verse 5 we see God, after renewing the covenant with Abram, change his name to Abraham. Then, in verse 15 He changes Sarai’s name to Sarah. God took them with all the baggage and completely changed their identity. 

In 2 Corinthians 5:17 Paul writes “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” We can see here that our calling to live with new identities is much like Abraham and Sarah’s. We are to be holy because He is holy (1 Peter 1:15). We are called to stand out, and proclaim his great news. 

Just a few verses down in 2 Corinthians 5:21 we read one of my favorite Bible verses. “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” Just take a moment to focus on that last line “that we might become the righteousness of God.” No matter who you are or the sins you have committed God wants to make you new. God is calling you to a glorious purpose. 

Trust in his Word. Trust in His promise. He is a glorious Savior!

Posted by Josh Boles with 0 Comments

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