6-Week Series: Against All Odds


Summary: We make assumptions and form opinions about things every day. From these assumptions we take action and make decisions. But - what if our assumptions are wrong?


(Text: Gen. 20:1-18)


By: Larry L. Schoonover)


We all make assumptions and form opinions about things each day - and from these assumptions we take action and make decisions.

Have you ever made an assumption about something that proved to be false? Have you ever made a false assumption that proved to be detrimental?


One day while working in the oilfield we were "breaking out" and removing old, abandoned pipelines. These were old "flow lines" and "gas lines". Natural gas has a tendency to dry out the threads of pipe and this, coupled with their age, make screwing the pipe apart very difficult. It was necessary to break the threads loose before screwing them apart with our pipe wrenches. This is done by striking the coupling a number of times with a 3 lb. hammer. The process of striking the coupling we called "warming it up".

While beating on the coupling of one connection I heard a hissing sound. I assumed that I had broken another pipe lying directly beneath the one I was working on and there was gas leaking, thus making this hissing sound. So, in order to locate the problem I began to dig and poke and beat around on the

ground in the vicinity of the noise.

Much to my surprise, my assumptions were completely wrong. That hissing sound turned out to be the noise emanating from a bumble bee nest! You see, bumble bees nest underground.

Well, this nest of bees poured out of that small hole in the ground like a whirlwind and came after me with a vengence! At that time I had a large, scraggly, awful looking "afro" which those bees tried to light into. They chased me across the field and over the hill. When, after a few minutes I tried to return, they put me over the hill again! This happened not once, not twice but about three or four times. And, all the while, my co-workers were standing by laughing until the tears rolled down their cheeks. - [Larry L. Schoonover]

** My false assumptions were dangerous and led to a situation that could have been easily avoided and was totally unnecessary.

Sometimes the assumptions we make have devastating results don’t they? Therefore, we must be careful about the assumptions we make in life - especially the assumptions we make as Christians.

Let’s examine some of the assumptions made by Abraham, the result of those assumptions, and see perhaps if there is not a lesson in them for the Church of God today.

Abraham Assumed That He Could Live WHERE He Wanted (1)

1 And Abraham journeyed from thence toward the south country, and dwelled between Kadesh and Shur, and sojourned in Gerar.

Why would I list this as a "false assumption"? Preacher, are you about to suggest that I don’t have the right or the freedom to choose where I live? - To put it simply, yes, I am.

I believe every aspect of our life belongs unto God! This means then that:

1. Our career belongs to God.

a) I am convinced that one of our greatest problems in the typical American Church today is that we are too quick to assert and too concerned about our "rights" and our "freedom to choose" and less concerned about what is right and who should do the "choosing".

i) There would be a lot fewer Church fights, hurt feelings, and incomplete tasks if we were more concerned about what God wants us to do instead of what we feel we have the right to do!

ii) The work of God would progress much faster and better if we were less concerned about our "liberties" and more concerned about the affect of our choices upon others!

(1 Cor. 6:12)

12 All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.

(1 Cor. 10:23-24)

23 All things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but all things edify not.

24 Let no man seek his own, but every man another’s wealth.

(1 Cor. 8:9)

9 But take heed lest by any means this liberty of yours become a stumblingblock to them that are weak.

b) If Christians would seek God in their career - life would be much more pleasant, their life would take on new meaning, and their Christian service would be much more effective.

2. Our family belongs to God.

a) Do you know why there are so many Christians with a miserable family life? In large part it is due to the fact that they have purposely excluded God in the choice of their spouse!

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