Archives For Abraham

Second Installment:  God’s Call

Hello and welcome back!

ABRAHAM’S CALL

Abraham was living in Ur at the time of God’s call.  He didn’t accept the idolatry that was taking place all around him.  Abraham was a man, according to historical Jewish tradition accounts, under persecution for his stand for morality.

What we do know for fact is that God called Abraham as recorded in Acts 7:2-3 (NIV):  2  To this he replied: “Brothers and fathers, listen to me! The God of glory appeared to our father Abraham while he was still in Mesopotamia, before he lived in Haran.  3 ‘Leave your country and your people,’ God said, ‘and go to the land I will show you.’”

Can you see the shadow of things to come in this call God gave to Abraham?  Think on it: this first voice pointing to many such calls throughout the history of God’s people.

“When God calls us, he doesn’t always answer the question, ‘Why, Lord?'”

This same voice called to Matthew who left his position during the course of his work and followed Jesus.  This same voice called out to Peter to leave the nets and follow Him.

The voice that Abraham heard that day was a voice that is a call to separate – to abandon the known and to walk into the unknown.

This was a call to walk a different path.

Such calls from God prepare the called one to grow.  Leaving everything known behind and obediently following God’s call forces the called one to become responsible, to pay attention to his surroundings, to expand his understanding without relying on other’s to do it for him.

YOUR PERSONAL CALL

Has God called you to action?  Has He given you a direction that He wants you to follow?

When God calls, be an Abraham.  Do not deny God.  When god calls, you may need to leave everything you know behind but God never calls without He leads the way to the destination.  To be a person who walks with God and not with the world, you have to follow His lead in order to be in fellowship with Him.

What does answering God’s call and following Him look like?

1.       There are trials and difficulties.

Following God means giving up yourself.  In other words, you may need to leave familiar surroundings.  You may have to say goodbye to family and friends.  You may be required to give up a secure material lifestyle to follow Him.  Following the Lord can at times be isolated from friends and loved once we are on God’s path for us.  Although we are expectant of unbelievable riches in heaven, the here and now can be rough.  To sum it up, seven words from the mouth of Jesus says it all in the garden, “Not my but Your will be done.”\

2.       It always proves to be for our own good.

Sheltered and surrounded by family can lead to weakness.  Strength develops when we find ourselves alone and in different surroundings.  We can discover how to handle responsibility.  Learning to trust God rather than self comes from being helpless and alone.  Total trust in Jesus grows faith.  When we release our grip upon the material world, we open the door to spiritual growth.  The world benefits too when we begin, through faith, to be salt and light to a spiritually dead world.

3.       The call comes with a promise.

When God calls us, he doesn’t answer the question, “Why, Lord?”  He may not give reasons for His call but he always gives a promise.  The promise is easily understood while the reason might be beyond our comprehension.  Let’s look at a call (command) and a promise (God’s promises are a guarantee): John 11:25-26 (NIV) 25  Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; 26  and whoever lives and believes in me will never die…”  We can see the call being to believe and the promise to be never dying.

The promise is always greater than the price of the calling.  This is because He who guarantees is our Almighty Father in heaven.  Glory to His name!

(…to be continued)

Until next time!

Zach

QUESTION:  Are you fulfilling God’s call on your life?

First Installment: Out of Darkness and Into the Light.

Hello and welcome back!

It’s great that you are here!  We are beginning a brand new post series!  This series will consist of several postings that deal with the life of the Friend of God, Abraham, the patriarch.

The importance of the life of Abraham in both the Old and New Testament is indisputable.  Without knowledge of this patriarch of the Hebrew nation, a great hole will be left in the Christian’s Scriptural understanding.

This is the purpose of this post series.  These mini-lessons will enlighten you about Abraham, the father of the great Hebrew nation of Israel.

Many passages in Scripture would be less likely to be understood without this knowledge.

Around 2,000 years before Christ appeared on the scene, in the city of Ur, Abraham first came into contact with God.

Abraham’s descendants sprang from Shem, lived in this flourishing land of fertile growth.

The beautiful expanse of sky in that region provided the best viewing for the wonders of the heavens.  This may be a possible reason they worshiped the heavenly bodies with a form of religion that wrapped around idols and a form of licentiousness that occurs when a people is out of obedience and community with God.

Through this one man, Abraham, God began the process of reconciliation between Himself and the human race, as he had done after the flood through Moses.

He separated Abraham and some of His relatives and sent the away from the place they called home towards a land they had never seen but that God promised to them if they remained in obedience to Him.

This happening occurred around 400 years after the flood.

The Hamites (descendants of Ham, son of Noah) were already in the land when the Shemites (the people descended from Shem, Abraham’s linage).

They settled where their patriarch, Terah, decided which was in the excellent pasture lands on the outskirts of Ur.

The detrimental effects of a people lowering their standards when confronted by a culture without morality created the slow but steady deterioration of the Shemites, Abraham’s people.  Their children who were brought up in these morally-challenged circumstances lost their moral compass.  The result was the gradual decay of the Shemite religion resulting in following the ways of the Hamites into idolatry.

Abraham grew up in this idolatrous culture of the Hamites and that cultures constant dilution of Abraham’s familial household.  Tradition shows that Abraham resisted the idolatrous lifestyle and the licentious behavior of this culture.

He came through the trials and tribulations of this culture and was chosen to be separated from this culture in order to call Abraham to leave the homeland of his youth and to follow Him to a promised land, to be set apart as God’s holy people.

Abraham was alone in his struggle to refrain from the morality and idol worship around him.  Grow in your determination to resist the modern cultural debased morality in which you find yourself, Christian!  It is a lonely walk but one in which God Himself walks with us, even when we cannot feel Him beside us.

Even in the lonely valley of this 21st century decadence – you reside, attend church, and work for a living.   Stand strong and uncompromising in the temptations of this morally-debased society.

God will see your faithfulness and will bring you out of the pit and you will be a light to those around you that reflect the true nature of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Like Abraham, God will lead you out of darkness and into the light.

Next Post: God’s Call to Follow

(…to be continued)

**These post on the life of Abraham will be found in the Bible study category**.

Until next time!

Zach

Question:  What do you think of this new post series?