Summary: Abraham must receive reconciliation with his neighbors.
• Mistakes happen to everyone.
• In 1980 a book intitled “The Book of Blunders” was published.
• Here are three examples of the blunders this book recorded.
• When a drum major tossed his baton in Ventura, California, it hit two 4000-volt power lines, blacking out a ten-block area and putting a radio station off the air. The baton melted.
• A bank robber in Los Angeles told the clerk not to give him cash, but to deposit the money to his checking account.
• On his first assignment for a Chicago newspaper, a rookie reporter drove a company car to a car-crushing plant, parked in the wrong spot, and returned from interviewing the manager just in time to see the vehicle being compacted into scrap metal.
• Have you noticed that it is easier it is to say, “I made a mistake” than it is to say, “I have sinned”?
• Here is a chorus of a song that may be the next new praise song in the modern, seeker-friendly, feel good Church:
• I thought I was mistaken, but I was wrong.
• I once stood corrected, but not for very long.
• Mark my errors as corrected, ‘cause that how they belong.
• I those I was mistaken, but I was wrong.
• The Study of Abraham continues. We don’t expect perfection from him, but we do expect growth.
• Remember, the Bible never said his performance was perfect, that that he believed God, and that was counted as righteousness.
• However, the more we walk with God, over time, the better our lives should be.
Gen 20:1-2 From there Abraham journeyed toward the territory of the Negeb and lived between Kadesh and Shur; and he sojourned in Gerar. 2 And Abraham said of Sarah his wife, "She is my sister." And Abimelech king of Gerar sent and took Sarah.
• If you remember, Egypt is always considered a symbol of sin.
• When Abraham went to Egypt earlier, he told this same lie, or deception.
• Now he heads south, for whatever reason we don’t know.
• When Abraham moved towards Bethel, he met with God.
• When he moved south, it represents moving away from God’s presence.
• We know God is not associated with any physical property, for He is everywhere.
• But the spiritual lesson is that we need to continually dwell in His presence.
• When we spiritually wander into lukewarmness, we ask for trouble.
• Temptation will come no matter where we are
• But the first major point I want you to grasp is this: being in the wrong place gives temptation more power to overcome us than when we are in the right place.
• Abraham was in the wrong spot, and this made temptation to do wrong stronger than it should have been.
• Funny, Sarah is 89 years old. She must have been quite a looker.
Gen 20:3 But God came to Abimelech in a dream by night and said to him, "Behold, you are a dead man because of the woman whom you have taken, for she is a man's wife."
• Here we see God protecting Sarah, even though her husband had failed her.
• Why did God protect Sarah?
1. Because God had made a promise to Abraham and Sarah, and He was going to fulfill it.
• I remind you of one of my favorite verses.
• 2Ti 2:13 “if we are faithless, he remains faithful-- for he cannot deny himself.”
2. Because Sarah was obediently living under authority.
• There is a special protection for one who surrenders under authority and trusts God to protect them.
• And there is a special trouble for those who live with a rebellious spirit.
• Biblically, had Sarah had known it, she could have respectfully declined this request from Abraham because he was asking her to sin against God, a higher authority.
• He was asking her to live with the same lack of integrity that was in his heart.
• However, God’s grace covers the absence of rebellion if we err on the non-rebellious side.
• He did for Sarah.
• God warns Abimelech that he was a dead man walking if he didn’t make right with Sarah.
Gen 20:4-5 Now Abimelech had not approached her. So he said, "Lord, will you kill an innocent people? 5 Did he not himself say to me, 'She is my sister'? And she herself said, 'He is my brother.' In the integrity of my heart and the innocence of my hands I have done this."
• God spoke to Abimelech in a dream, and Abimelech defended himself.
• “Lord, it’s not my fault. I simply believed your man. He said Sarah was a sister. Besides, I having touched her.”