Summary: Tempted by Satan to failure.
A. THE INEVITABILITY OF TESTS
1. We are tempted by satan to failure.
2. We are tested by God to demonstrate strength.
Abraham tested by God:
11:26-12:3 – tested by obedience to God’s call
12:4-9 – tested by provision of God in the land
12:1-18 – tested by broken relationship (with family)
14:1-16 – tested by the courage of faith
14:17-24 – tested by provision of money
“When Abram returned from his victory over the kings from Mesopotamia, he was met by the king of Sodom, and Melchizedek, the king of Salem, who was a priest of the Most High God. He gave Abram bread and wine to eat and blessed him saying, ‘Blessed be the Most High God who possesses heaven and earth. He gave you the victory.’ Then Abram gave Melchizedek a tithe of all the spoils. Then, the king of Sodom asked for his people who were captured, but told Abram he could keep all the goods that were his. Abram told him no, ‘I have pledged my hand to the Most High God, and I will not keep anything, not a thread or sandal, that was yours. Otherwise you might say, I have made Abram rich. I’ll only keep the food I ate. But, I will give my share to my allies to keep what they want’” (Gen. 14:17-24, Amplified).
B. ABRAHAM MEETS TWO KINGS
1. The first to meet Abram is Melchizedek, king of Jerusalem.
2. He was not captured in the invasion (high and defended).
3. He came to bless Abram, “He blessed him . . . blessed be Abram of the Most High God” (14:19).
4. He worshipped same God as Abram. “He was priest of the Most High God” (v. 18).
5. Abram gave him a tithe of the spoils of war. “Gave him tithes of all” (v. 26).
You give back to God a tithe
Out of what God has given to you
6. The name: MOST HIGH GOD (v. 18-20, 22).
a. Both men served El Elyon, Possessor of heaven and earth.
b. Name symbolic of God’s victory over satan (Is. 14:14).
7. Some teach Melchizedek is an appearance of Christ, i.e., Christophany.
a. He received tithes, as does God (Heb. 7:8).
b. He is king of Salem, peace, and king of righteousness justification.
c. He has no genealogy. “Without father . . . mother” (Heb. 7:3).
d. He has no “beginning of days” (Heb. 7:3).
e. He “served” the Lord’s Table. “Bread and wine” (v. 18).
8. Some teach Melchizedek is a type of Christ. An actual king who pre-figured Jesus Christ.
a. He was king of Jerusalem, i.e., city of Jehovah’s Peace.
b. He was “made like unto the son of God” (Heb. 7:3).
c. The Father made Jesus a priest. “After the order of Melchizedek” (Ps. 118:4).
9. Melchizedek recognized Abram’s great victory came from God. “The Most High God . . . delivered thine enemies into thy hand” (v. 20).
10. Abram represents dignity, worship and a servant of God.
C. ABRAM RESPONDS TO THE KING OF SODOM
1. The city of Sodom. “The men of Sodom were wicked . . . exceedingly” (13:13).
2. The king of Sodom bargains with Abram. “Give me the persons, and take the goods to thyself” (14:21).
a. Why did the king of Sodom not go with Abram to fight?
b. Doesn’t everything already belong to Abram?
c. Why does the king of Sodom want people only?
3. If Abram received anything from the king of Sodom, Abram becomes obligated to him, i.e., his vassal. A believer must not be obligated to the world.
4. Abram’s refusal demonstrated his total allegiance to the Lord.
5. Abram took only the food he ate, and gave his allies the liberty to accept the spoils of war.
6. A lifelong vow. “I have lifted up my hand to the LORD” (v. 22). Abram repeats a vow he previously made, i.e., lifted is past tense.
7. Abram believed, “If God can possess heaven and earth, he could provide for his needs.” Abram failed when he went to Egypt, but here Abram passes this test involving money.
8. Why was Abram careful not to even take a “thread” or “leather shoe?” “Otherwise you might say, ‘I am the one who made Abram rich’” (v. 25). Who gives you money?
9. It’s easy to trust God when there is money, but can you do it in a famine?
10. What is God’s response? “After these things the Word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision, saying, ‘Do not be afraid, Abram, I am your shield, and your exceedingly great reward” (Gen. 15:1).
11. Abram bows in humility before God when Melchizedek approaches, and he stands in dignity before the king of Sodom.
If you have never really accepted Jesus as your personal Savior, would you do it right now? Do not delay or put it off. If you would like to receive Christ by faith, pray this simple prayer in your heart: