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Summary: Part II of a six week series demonstrating how God uses ordinary people to do extraordinary things.

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Main Scripture Text: Genesis 12:1-4

+ABRAHAM

+The Call of Abram

(Gen 12:1-4 NIV) "The LORD had said to Abram, "Leave your country, your people and your father’s household and go to the land I will show you. {2} "I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. {3} I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you." {4} So Abram left, as the LORD had told him; and Lot went with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he set out from Haran."

+Striking parallel between God’s conversation with Noah and God’s conversation with Abraham.

Gen. 8:15-20 Gen. 12:1-7

+a. Then God said to Noah (8:15) +a. The Lord had said to Abram (12:1)

+b. Come out from the ark (8:16) +b. Leave your country (12:1)

+c. So Noah came out (8:18) +c. So Abram left (12:4)

+d. Then Noah built an altar to the Lord (8:20) +d. So Abram built an altar there to the Lord (12:7)

+e. Then God blessed Noah (9:1) +e. “And I God will bless you” (12:2)

+f. “Be fruitful and increase” (9:1) +f. “I will make you into a great nation” (12:2)

+g. “I now establish my covenant with you +g. “To your offspring, I will give this and with your descendants” (9:9) land” (12:7)

+Are there other biblical characters with the same communicational elements that we see with Noah and Abram? Yeah, Somewhat, but with differences. For example:

Did you notice that when God spoke with Abraham, he used the direct approach…

Compared to when God spoke to Moses, there He just beat around the bush.

The Bible says that Abraham was the “friend of God.”

Abraham was Noah’s grandson.

+Abraham lived just about 4,000 years ago. When the Bible picks up the story of Abraham’s life, he’s already 70 years old. We know he was a rough Bedouin sheep master. He was raised in one of Sumeria’s largest cities, named Ur. He never spoke a prophecy, never wrote a book, penned a song, or gave a law (that we know of), yet Abraham is considered one of the greatest figures in nearly all of the world’s religions.

And for us as Christians, He is considered the “Father of the faithful, the friend of God.”

Each of us have heard sermons regarding Abraham’s faith when asked to sacrifice his son Isaac. Today, I want to focus on what I consider to be the hardest test of all for men and women in the year 2,006…. +To trust God with your life… and your future. We live in a time where we’re told to watch out for #1… instead we need to put ourselves last, and put God and others first.

Abram was given a unique revelation from God, and a unique revelation about God.

The scriptures don’t give the details about this, but what the scriptures do clearly tell us is that:

+Abraham gave up what was certain for what was uncertain…

+He left the familiar, to embrace the unfamiliar…

+He became committed to God’s direction for his life… without even knowing the details… because he trusted God…God said it… Abram believed it.

+Eventually God changed his name from +Abram, to +Abraham, just to match his faith. For years Abraham was without any children at all and yet the name God gave him meant the father of a multitude.

That’s like naming a baby boy “Suzy” fully expecting him to become a prize-fighter.

And a person’s name in Abraham’s culture was extremely important. That’s why as God began to work in a person’s life, one of the first things He would do is change their name. It showed that God was the proud Father who believes in his kids. One author said that if Abraham had been named according to the life he lived, his first name would have been “Ima” and his last name would have been “mess”

But it’s good to know that when God looks at our lives he names us after our potential. +God believes in us!! He knows He can accomplish great things through each one of us, if we’ll let Him.

Comments:

+Now Abraham believed God, and he trusted God with his life. Over and over again throughout the life of Abraham, We see him learning to wait on God to come through.

He was just like us.

So, God asked Abraham to follow Him. To adjust his life from one of comfort, satisfaction maybe, ease possibly, to loose the cable TV, to put aside the sitcoms, to lay aside the romantic novels, to refuse the nonsensical, the irrelevant, the temporary,

the pleasures… and journey with the Almighty.

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