Summary: Learning from the life of Abraham--discovering five life-principles that invite the blessings of God to be poured out onto our lives.
1. Illustration: The other day my wife and I went to the hospital for an appointment concerning Angela’s pregnancy. We had to park a long distance due to building construction. By the time we got to the information desk Angela was exhausted and was having contractions. The attendant invited us to get a wheelchair and so I wheeled Angela to the elevators. Of course we were about to be late and the elevators were taking their sweet time. Finally the elevator doors opened, and being the patient gentleman that I am I allowed an elderly lady to go first—however, she waited too, and the doors closed. I was mad—and my expression was giving me away. Eventually, after several minutes, the doors opened again—this time I wasn’t going to take any chances—I dashed Angela and me into the elevator—and then the elderly lady slowly walked into the elevator as well. The elevator lifted and the doors then opened—the lady walked off, turned around, and then said to me—“Dad, it’s going to be ok—don’t worry.” That pushed a button with me! “Don’t worry! I have been a dad three times over. I’m an expert at this! You don’t know what you’re talking about!” At least that is what I wanted to say.
2. So many times we are in a hurry—we are always in a rush to get to somewhere. But usually, it has no eternal consequence. Life is full of busyness, but it seems we are not accomplishing much. We go to work, we come home to eat dinner, and then we go to sleep. It appears that we become slaves to the mundane—and life becomes boring. Then we ask ourselves: “Is this it?”
3. The Psalmist wrote in Psalms 144:15 (NKJV) Happy are the people whose God is the Lord! In other words—life without God—without His purpose being fulfilled in our life—is a life of emptiness, frustration, and worthlessness. But, a life centered on Christ is a blessed life. When we live for ourselves—the worst come out. When we live for God—we live with purpose, gentleness, respect, and love.
4. This morning we begin a new journey—a new theme to tackle—a new lesson to learn. This morning I want to begin in new series of messages entitled: “The Life God blesses.” I believe God wants to bless your life—to give you a purpose—to give you understanding that your purpose is bigger, more fulfilling, and greater than you can ever think.
5. To kick this new series off, I go to one of my favorite people in the Bible—to Abraham—The Sojourner. As we look at his life—especially when he first encountered God—when his name was Abram—we will learn a valuable biblical truth in living a life that God blesses—a life that God wants to bless!
6. In an ancient time, long ago, there lived a family from Ur, the cradle of civilization. There was an elderly man, along with his wife, that God made a divine appointment.
7. Genesis 12:1-4 (NASB95) Now the LORD said to Abram, “Go forth from your country, And from your relatives And from your father’s house, To the land which I will show you; 2 And I will make you a great nation, And I will bless you, And make your name great; And so you shall be a blessing; 3 And I will bless those who bless you, And the one who curses you I will curse. And in you all the families of the earth will be blessed.” 4 So Abram went forth as the LORD had spoken to him.
8. This morning, we are going to be introduced to five life-principles from God’s Word the will help us focus on a key truth that when embraced and practiced, will invite the blessings of God to be poured out onto your life.
1. God is Personal
a. Genesis 12:1a (NASB95) Now the LORD said to Abram.
b. God is not an aloof, disinterested deity. He is the Creator, life-giver, and He is personal—He is interested in you! That is what Abram (Abraham) discovered: Now the LORD said to Abram.
c. God entered Abram’s world, confronted his sensibilities, and began a conversation that would not just change Abram’s life—but would change the course of human history.
d. God is personal—he created us for relationship and friendship. Just as He connected with Abram—He desires to connect with us.
e. God is personal.
2. God requires Detachment
a. Because God is personal, he knows us intimately. And, because God is all-knowing—He knows what is best for us—and that included Abram. And God said to Abram:
b. Genesis 12:1b (NASB95) “Go forth from your country, And from your relatives And from your father’s house, To the land which I will show you.
c. And, in this conversation that God began with Abram, He tells him to leave and to go—to detach from the familiar and embrace a life of faith.