Things I learned about Abram today:
- He was obedient. At 75 years old, when the Lord told him to move on, he did. Packed it all up and set out.
- He acknowledged God. When he set up camp near the Canaanites, he put up memorial altars to God. (He set up another altar when he moved his camp to Hebron. He also gave a tenth of the goods he recovered to Melchizedek.)
- He sinned. When Abram got to Egypt with Sarai, he was worried he’d be killed and devised a plan of his own to keep himself safe. It was a lie.
- He valued peace and relationships. When he and Lot realize their families and animals are getting too big to stay together: “Let’s not allow this conflict to come between us or our herdsmen. After all, we are close relatives! 9 The whole countryside is open to you. Take your choice of any section of the land you want, and we will separate. If you want the land to the left, then I’ll take the land on the right. If you prefer the land on the right, then I’ll go to the left.” Genesis 13:8b-9, NLT.
- He is brave. When Lot is taken by warring kingdoms. Abram mobilizes his 318 men born to his household and pursues them. That’s 318 versus an army. Genesis 14:14-15. (And he is victorious!)
- He was faithful and righteous. 6 And Abram believed the Lord, and the Lord counted him as righteous because of his faith. Genesis 15:6, NLT.
- He needed reassurance sometimes, just a mere 2 verses after being called faithful and righteous. 8 But Abram replied, “O Sovereign Lord, how can I be sure that I will actually possess it?” Genesis 15:8, NLT.
Things I learned about the Lord today:
- He always has a plan. “2 I will make you into a great nation. I will bless you and make you famous, and you will be a blessing to others. 3 I will bless those who bless you and curse those who treat you with contempt. All the families on earth will be blessed through you.” Genesis 12:2-3, NLT.
- He loves (still) even when (Abram) sinned. God protected Abram (and Sarai!), despite Abram’s effort to take the situation by his own means. There’s no record of what else happened, but this: “17 But the Lord sent terrible plagues upon Pharaoh and his household because of Sarai, Abram’s wife.” Genesis 12:17, NLT.
- He reminds of his love and promise. 14 After Lot had gone, the Lord said to Abram, “Look as far as you can see in every direction—north and south, east and west. 15 I am giving all this land, as far as you can see, to you and your descendants as a permanent possession. 16 And I will give you so many descendants that, like the dust of the earth, they cannot be counted! 17 Go and walk through the land in every direction, for I am giving it to you.” Genesis 13:14-17, NLT. (And later: Some time later, the Lord spoke to Abram in a vision and said to him, “Do not be afraid, Abram, for I will protect you, and your reward will be great.” Genesis 15:1, NLT.) The Lord is trustworthy and faithful.
- Even when He seems silent, He is there. There’s no mention of God instructing Abram how to defeat an army. But from this, even in the quiet of the Genesis 14 verses, we know He is there:
19 Melchizedek blessed Abram with this blessing:
“Blessed be Abram by God Most High,
Creator of heaven and earth.
20 And blessed be God Most High,
who has defeated your enemies for you.” Genesis 14: 19-20, NLT
- Psalm 148 is a beautiful song of praise for all that the Lord has done.
- And in Mark–He is merciful. Jesus approaches the tormented and scary demon-possessed man and heals him. 19 But Jesus said, “No, go home to your family, and tell them everything the Lord has done for you and how merciful he has been.” Mark 5:19, NLT. And to the fearful woman who reached out to touch the Lord’s robe for healing: 34 And he said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace. Your suffering is over.” Mark 5:34, NLT.
Wow, Lord. Just sitting here with Your Word today is a comfort. You remind me of who You are and what You can do. My heart is full of praise for You, and comforted by knowing You love me, no matter what. Thank You for Your protection, mercy, love, patience and plan. Thank You, that even against big odds, You can do bigger things. You are the peace that carries me.