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Summary: .. time for Plan “B” in a Plan “A” world. God decides to create a nation of special people. Leonard Sweet in His book: Jesus, A Theography writes: “The ultimate issue in the universe…..still today….. “who will be worshiped?” People must choose.

In Jesus Holy Name May 8, 2016

Text: Genesis 12:1-3 Series: The Story Redeemer

“God Builds a Nation”

On our Redeemer Facebook page our staff posted the video of the life story of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, from “The Story”. I loved the artist who drew that history on a chalk board. If we had a screen and projector here in this sanctuary. I would show that 3 minute video and sit down. It wraps over 200 years of family history and 39 chapters of Genesis in a fabulous 3 minute video. Wow!

When Adam and Eve disobeyed God, He escorted them out of the garden. This was the perfect place God had prepared for all of humanity. A place of harmony and peace. When their descendants chose to ignore God in favor of their selfish desires, God sent a flood on the earth, sparing only one man and his family. His name was Noah.

His descendants did not work out so well either. They built the Tower of Babel, to make a name for themselves.

It was time for Plan “B” in a Plan “A” world. God decides to create a nation of special people. Leonard Sweet in His book: Jesus, A Theography writes: “The ultimate issue in the universe…..still today….. “who will be worshiped?” People must choose. Adam and Eve made a choice. Cain made a choice each to go it alone.

Nation building is not an easy task. Corrupt leadership must be removed. Infrastructure for basic services, like water and sanitation. A legal and justice system. Our own founding Fathers took 12 years before the national government and fundamental laws were signe on September 17, 1787 by the delegates to the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia.

God chose to begin this special nation with a childless couple. Abram is 75 and his wife Sarai is 65. Because of infertility their family genetics was coming to an end. This is where God intervenes in the human story to begin “Plan B”. What is Plan B? He wants to restore the “community” of love. God wants to bring humanity back to Himself in perfect harmony. The only thing standing in the way is “human selfishness” and “the gift of “free will”.

Read Genesis 12:1

God comes to Abram and says: “Will you leave everything you know. Your people. Your father’s household. Will you go. I’m not going to tell you where….just start walking.” Ever had a call like that? Leave the familiar. Trust God.

Read Genesis 12:2

• If you go I will bless you.

• You will become a great nation

• You will be a blessing to others

• Oh… there will be some who curse you.

Ten years go by. No children. Abram is now 85 and Sarai 75. You can hear the voice of the serpent from the Garden who truly hates God’s plan for humanity. He wants to stick his thumb into God’s eye. Listen to his voice: “Ah, Sarai, If God loved you wouldn’t you have become pregnant by now? Maybe your old man didn’t really hear the voice of God.”

Are you sure? Doubt. Nothing new. The best tactic of Satan still today is to create doubt in your mind that God has not heard your prayers.

Doubt is Satan’s best weapon for a culture….There really is no hell…how foolish to believe those old teachings from the past.” Doubt.

So Sarai gets to thinking. “Maybe God needs our help?” After the birth of Hagar’s son, Ishmael, God came again and said…. Folks thanks for your help but no thanks. That was not my plan. When God visited Abram again, he was 100 and she was 90. Not the most optimal years for raising children. Sarah agreed and laughed. Exactly one year later Isaac was born.

The rest of the O. T. and N. T. are filled with important moments for the descendants of Abraham and Sarah.

Look at Matthew 1:1-3 Jesus is a descendant of Abraham. The children of Israel are descendants of Abraham. They must remember God’s plan… to be a blessing. God was very clear that his plan for them to be a blessing was to begin in the home. Deut. 7:6; 9, 12; 11:13, 16 (responsibility) 19 (in the home.

Like the children of Israel we are to be a conduit of God’s blessings, not just a receptacle. We are to be like water hose not a water jug. The blessings from God are to flow through us to others, not kept in our home safe.

Have you ever been at a meeting where the leader hands out the agenda or other notes and says: “Please pass this on?”

Those who have listened, take their notes and then pass thenm on to the next person. But there is always someone, when the notes arrive…. They just stop.

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