Summary: How to love and pray for the lost world as demonstrated by Abraham.
Ill. In 1886, Dr. John Pemberton’s concern took action. One day he introduced Atlanta, Georgia to his caramel-colored syrup concoction. He first distributed this concoction to Jacobs Pharmacy where Coca-Cola was sold for the first time. As it’s popularity rose, Dr. Pemberton’s concern was that every person alive should be able to taste his product at least one time in there life!
It has been over 100 years since Dr. Pemberton’s concern took action. Surveys now show that 97% of the world has heard of Coca-cola, 72% has seen a can of Coca-Cola, and 51% has tasted Coca-Cola! (used from sermoncentral.com adapted from R. Davis)
• After two thousand years, there are still people groups who have not heard of Jesus.
• There are billions of people who have not seen Jesus in the life of a believer.
• There are billions of people who have not seen that Jesus makes a difference in a life.
• Who is praying for all these people?
• When we pray for them, how and what should be pray.
• This is far more important than having them taste a Coca Cola.
• After Abraham and the Lord had fellowship together, He went on to his business.
Gen 18:16-19 Then the men set out from there, and they looked down toward Sodom. And Abraham went with them to set them on their way. 17 The LORD said, "Shall I hide from Abraham what I am about to do, 18 seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him? 19 For I have chosen him, that he may command his children and his household after him to keep the way of the LORD by doing righteousness and justice, so that the LORD may bring to Abraham what he has promised him."
• The Lord came to Abraham and Sarah to share His plan for them.
• He had another purpose, to destroy some wicked cities.
• Because of the honor that Abraham had in being chosen to be the father of a great nation, God wanted him to know more of His plans.
• We will see Abraham go from the height of joy to the depths of sorrow.
Gen 18:20-22 Then the LORD said, "Because the outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is great and their sin is very grave, 21 I will go down to see whether they have done altogether according to the outcry that has come to me. And if not, I will know." 22 So the men turned from there and went toward Sodom, but Abraham still stood before the LORD.
• Abraham did the hospitable thing and begin walking with the men.
• The Lord told Abraham that He was going to investigating Sodom and Gomorrah.
• For the second time, the Lord made a comment that was for strictly Abraham’s benefit.
• First He asked, “Should I tell Abraham our plans?”
• He wasn’t seeking the two angels permission.
• He was getting Abraham’s attention.
• Then He said, “We are going to see if the wickedness of Sodom and Gomorrah is as bad as we suspect.”
• Again, He knew everything, and He was saying this for Abraham’s benefit.
• The Lord and the two angels continued to walk, but Abraham stopped, kind of said, “Wait a minute”.
• His reaction indicated that he knew what the Lord was find and the wickedness of these two cities.
Gen 18:23-25 Then Abraham drew near and said, "Will you indeed sweep away the righteous with the wicked? 24 Suppose there are fifty righteous within the city. Will you then sweep away the place and not spare it for the fifty righteous who are in it? 25 Far be it from you to do such a thing, to put the righteous to death with the wicked, so that the righteous fare as the wicked! Far be that from you! Shall not the Judge of all the earth do what is just?"
• Abraham’s heart sinks when he realized what the Lord was going to encounter and deal with.
• “Are you going to destroy the good folk with the wicked? If there are 50 good folk, would you destroy the whole place to get rid of the rest? That just doesn’t sound like you, to put away the righteous along with the wicked. You are the judge of the whole earth and you know better.”
• This seems bold of Abraham, but I have heard prayers that say so much as this.
• But God knew Abraham would do this and was shaping his heart.
Gen 18:26 And the LORD said, "If I find at Sodom fifty righteous in the city, I will spare the whole place for their sake."