Summary: Abraham gave us a good example of how we can receive God’s guidance: (1) Know God’s Word, (2) Commit to God’s will, (3) Trust God’s ways, and (4) Pray for God’s wisdom.
Gen 24:1-14 Receiving God’s Guidance ES 17 Sep 06, 2488
[I’ve taken the main points of this sermon from Larry Sarver’s sermon ‘Four Principles for Receiving God’s Guidance’ in SermonCentral.com]
This is the story of how God guided Abraham’s servant to find the wife for his son Isaac. We’re going to learn some principles in receiving God’s guidance.
Our God is a God who guides, and who wants to guide.
• He did that for Abraham – bringing him out from his homeland to Israel.
• He did that for Moses and the people – from Egypt to Canaan.
• He did that for the wise men who wanted to see baby Jesus – so He showed them the way through a star in the sky.
Today, God wants to guide you in your choices – if you allow Him.
2 Chron 7:14 "If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land."
Rom 10:9 "If you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved."
1 John 1:9 "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness."
It is not that God do not want to guide us, it is more often the case that we do not want to listen to His advice. We ignore His guidance.
Illustration: RETURN TO THE CABIN
A flight attendant spent a week’s vacation in the Rockies. She was captivated by the mountain peaks, the clear blue skies, and the beautiful forest. She also was charmed by a very eligible bachelor who owned and operated a cattle ranch and lived in a log cabin.
At the end of this week, after a wonderful time with this bachelor, she has to return home to her job. While on board the place, she was pondering, “Should I go back to the city or return to the woods and stay with this man in the cabin for the rest of her life?” She was struggling but believes that God will give her an answer.
To refresh herself, she went into the rest room and splashed some water on her face. Just then, there was some turbulence, a ‘ding’ sound went off and then a sign in the rest room lit up: PLEASE RETURN TO THE CABIN.
She did - to the cabin back in the mountains.
…Modified from Reader’s Digest [1/81], p. 118.
I hope this is not the way you make decisions in life.
• Making the right choice is a dilemma for many people, including Christians.
• How can you and I be certain that we are in God’s will and that the decisions we are making are the right ones?
• This is an important subject for all of us since we all must make important decisions.
This passage in Genesis 24 deals with this subject and problem.
• In this chapter we not only see God providing guidance to His people in an important matter but we also see the conditions under which that guidance was provided.
• These conditions, which could also be referred to as principles, are what I will discuss today.
There are 4 key principles that can help us.
The 1st principle for receiving God’s guidance: Knowing God’s Word.
[See verses 3-4]
We must know God’s will and purposes to help direct our actions and decisions.
• And that knowledge comes first and foremost from God’s Word.
• God’s Word reveals God’s plan, principles and purposes.
• We need to start with that. Without this knowledge, you might as well do whatever you want.
Abraham knew right at the start what he was looking for.
• He gave very clear instruction to the servant where to find a wife for Isaac – not among the daughters of the Canaanites.
• Boundaries have been set because Abraham knew what was right in God’s sight.
Knowledge of God’s Word is the first step in the right direction.
We see Abraham taking steps to see that God’s plan is fulfilled.
• God promised to make him a great nation.
• Isaac must marry and have children for the covenant blessings to be received.
• Abraham understands this, so he doesn’t sit idly and wait for God’s plan to be fulfilled.
• He does his part and takes appropriate action; in this case he begins to look for a wife for Isaac.
Sometimes we think that if God guides us, it means we do not have to do anything.
• Like people who are out of work and yet refuse to go look for a job because they are waiting for God to provide a job.