Monday, June 17, 2019

2019.06.17 Hopewell @Home ▫ Genesis 12:4-9

Questions for Littles: What did Abram do at the beginning of Genesis 12:4? Why? Who went with him? How old was he? From where did he depart? Who and what else did Abram take (Genesis 12:5)? To where did they come? Through what land did Abram pass (Genesis 12:6)? To what place? As far as what object? Who were then in the land? Who appeared to Abram in Genesis 12:7? What did He say? How did Abram respond? To which mountain did he then move (Genesis 12:8)? What did he build there? What did he do with it? What was Abram doing in Genesis 12:9? In what direction?    
Joshua 24:2 tells us where Abraham came from, not only physically but spiritually. Before this chapter, he was serving other gods. So, what happens in Genesis 12:4-9 isn’t just good. It’s literally miraculous. Faith like this doesn’t come from the heart of a lost idolater. It takes divine power.

Of course, that’s another problem. Sinners don’t deserve for divine power to help them. Sinners deserve for divine power to destroy them.

But verses 4-9 tell us that Abram obeyed Yahweh’s words. That he was in Canaan but not of Canaan. That worship was suddenly his top priority.

That’s grace. A completely undeserved and impossible turnaround. Blessing for someone who deserves only curse. Spiritual life for someone who only has death from himself.

It was grace that produced obedience. As Genesis 12:5 implies, there would have been a lot of logistics involved in Abram’s move. But, the primary thing Genesis 12:4 tells us is that the move was “as Yahweh had spoken to him.” God grant us the grace to have our choices ruled instantly, completely by His Word.

It was grace that strengthened Abram to resist the pressure to be like the world around him. He even targets “the oak of the teacher” in Genesis 12:6. The Canaanites were then in the land, and at a place that would have been important to their religion, Abram sets up an altar and worships Yahweh. God grant us the grace to serve Him in exactly those parts of life where the world around us offends Him most.

It was grace that made worship Abram’s top priority. What did Abram do in Shechem? A lot of things, but the only one that Genesis 12:7 tells us about is that he worships in response to God’s promise of something impossible—that the seed of a man who has no seed will inherit the land. What did Abram do between Bethel and Ai? Obviously much more than just “pitch a tent,” but the only thing that Genesis 12:8 tells us is that he worships. The main thing in Abram’s life has become worship. God grant us the grace to make worshiping Him the main thing in our life, regardless of what all the other things are.
What are some changes that you would make if you decided to “tear off the bandaid” and obey God instantly on things that you’ve been sluggish or slow to do thus far? What would your day look like if worship was the highest priority? What would your week look like?
Suggested Songs: ARP181 “God Our Only Good” or TPH73C “In Sweet Communion”

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