Summary: Genesis verse-by-verse
Last week we went through a chapter of reminders. Reminders given to Abraham and his descendants of who God is, the Almighty God, and what He expects from His people, complete obedience. The reminders were through God’s Word, meaningful names and the sign of the covenant.
This week we’re going through part one of a couple of chapters that fully display the difference between the righteous and the unrighteous; Between God’s friends and God’s foes; Between Abraham and Lot; Between Israel and Sodom. Glaring differences between the godly and the ungodly. Let’s start with the godly represented by Abraham who’s also called the friend of God. What an amazing thing to be called – the friend of God.
Think about that for a moment. Abraham is called the friend of God. And friendship is a two-way street. God wasn’t just his friend – he was God’s friend as well. Wow. This friendship with God is highlighted in the passage we’ll be in tonight, Genesis 18. This chapter shows us a few of the dynamics of their friendship. First of all it shows us:
1. God’s friendship with Abraham was initiated by God
[Read Genesis 12:1, 15:1, 17:1, 18:1.]
You know if I was the Lord and was looking for a friend I wouldn’t have come knocking on Abraham’s door. Here’s this pagan man who has very little to offer God. I mean, just what can Abraham bring to the table? Just what would they talk about? Here’s God…and here’s Abraham. Nevertheless, God sought him out to not only use him to bring forth Israel and the Savior, but also to be His friend.
And that’s just how God is. He seeks, He initiates, He searches for those that would follow Him and become His friend.
[Read John 4:23.]
Isn’t that great? We don’t have to go on some cosmic journey to find God. He seeks us. And if we’re open to Him, He’ll reveal Himself to us through His Word, His Spirit, creation, our conscience and even the miraculous. All to show us that He is real. God’s friendship with Abraham was initiated by God. The second aspect of their friendship that we see is:
2. God’s friendship with Abraham was strengthened by fellowship
[Read Genesis 18:2-8.]
There’s an overwhelming amount of respect given from Abraham towards the Lord and the angels with Him. So much so that it was even a worshipful event. Look at what Abraham’s efforts were:
- bowed before them
- running everywhere
- begging the Lord to stay
- had their feet washed
- provided a place for them to rest
- had a meal prepared with “fine flour” and a “calf”
- stood while they ate
But what’s amazing is that the way the Lord accepted Abraham’s efforts it made this meal of appreciation a meal of fellowship.
- the Lord agreed to stay
- the Lord accepted whatever Abraham gave Him
- the Lord “ate” the meal
This meal of appreciation became a meal of fellowship when the Lord accepted and
participated in what Abraham had done for Him.
You see, God isn’t just about our worship and obedience. He wants to have relationship with us. And not just in Heaven some day – but now!
[Read Revelation 3:20.]
Our fellowship with the Lord now is through the Word, through prayer, through meditation, through worship, and even through His presence by the Holy Spirit. That fellowship continues to strengthen our relationship with God. But one day this earthly fellowship will be heavenly as we sit down at the marriage supper of the Lamb.
So, God’s friendship with Abraham was initiated by God and it was strengthened by fellowship. Also:
3. God’s friendship with Abraham was open and honest
You know you have a true friend when they’re willing to be open and honest with you. A good friend is someone who’ll tell you:
- when you’ve got broccoli stuck in between your teeth
- your deodorant wore off two days ago
Well, God was sure open and honest with Abraham, (and his wife).
[Read Genesis 18:9-15.]
Now try and picture what’s going on here. Sarah’s behind the tent door listening to God confirm to him again that Sarah would have his child. When Sarah hears this she laughed to herself at this outrageous and humanly impossible ability. When the Bible says she laughed to herself it means that she laughed secretly or quietly or even within herself.
She didn’t bust out from behind the tent door and laugh uncontrollably. She laughed and thought to herself, “Now that just aint gonna happen!”
But God knew her thoughts and asked Abraham why Sarah was laughing. Now how come God didn’t ask Sarah why she was laughing? Why ask Abraham?