Summary: This sermon fills in the gap between Lot's rescue and the promised son to Abraham.
A lot can change in 25 years. Twenty-five years ago, I was 40 years old. Crystal was seven. Shane was five. We had been in Denver 2 years. Denver was all farmland. There were three service stations and a Red & White grocery store. There were no fast food restaurants. If you wanted a more modern store or a place to eat, you could go to Charlotte, Huntersville, Hickory, or Lincolnton.
There were two places in Denver where you could rent your favorite movies on VHS tapes. However, you had to remember to rewind before you returned them to the store. Eventually the VHS would be consumed by the new DVD format and the stores would
sub-come to the movies being made available on cable TV and portable outlets.
If you were in an area that did not have cable, as we were, you got a satellite dish in your yard. It was huge enough to track the space station as it passed over. Of course, at that time there was no space station. If I had tried to put this contraption on my home, the roof would have given away. But soon, DirectTV invented a portable dish that would sit on your house with no problem.
When we finally got cable, we discovered the wonders of wonder. It came with something new called TiVo. You could record your favorite show on those good old VHS tapes and watch them later. Of course, now we have DVR and can record two programs at the same time and store them until we get the chance to watch them, which currently would take me a solid week of 10-hour days of watching TV.
The drug stores all had places to turn in your rolls of film from your family vacation. You could pick them up three days later. Then digital cameras came along and cameras using film became obsolete. To this day, I have a bag with rolls of film in my closet that has never been developed.
Popcorn moved from the stovetop into the microwave. Salads began coming in bags already mixed. Canvas tennis shoes became Air Jordans. The Stairmaster found its way from out of homes and into gyms, creating the gyms with all that fascinating exercise equipment, most of which I do not use.
Twenty-five years ago, Visa introduced a check card that was tied into your checking account. We now call them debit cards. Carrying money became passé. This led to pay at the pump service stations, killing a time when someone did it for you while cleaning your windshield, checking your oil, and your tire pressure.
Twenty-five years ago, the first handheld cell phone came out. The DynaTAC 8000x became available. It weighed almost two pounds and cost $3995. It would be another 15 years before Debbie would drag me kicking and screaming into the cell phone age.
The first portable IBM-compatible PC, more commonly know as a laptop, would hit the market. The Compaq Portable weighed 28 pounds and toped the $3000 range.
Of course, we will never know how many AA batteries it takes to run a laptop. That’s because Sony came out with a durable rechargeable battery to run that laptop. Since then it’s found in cell phones, digital cameras, almost any portable electronic device.
And to keep ourselves amused in these last 25 years, we were given the Karaoka machine to sing ourselves down the highway. As a side note, the most popular song on the Karaka machine is Patsy Cline’s “Crazy.” This is just the tip of the iceberg of changes that have taken place over the last 25 years.
Today we will look at a 25-year chunk of Abram’s life. He would see some events take place. He would witness some changes in his life. But he would not see the ultimate promise fulfilled during this time. So let’s begin journeying with Abram again.
Last week Abram had separated from Lot over land disputes. Lot chooses to go toward Sodom. Abram remained in Canaan. Soon afterwards, Sodom fell to invading kings and Lot and his possessions were carried off. Abram rallied his military and rescued Lot and his stuff. Lot returned to Sodom while Abram had an encounter with Melchizedek, the priest of the God Most High.
As we enter this next part of the story, it’s been about 430 years since the flood took place. It is very conceivable that by this time there is between one to two million people living on the earth. As Abram is pondering all these people that are dwelling in the land he is realizing that old age has overtaken him. He’s sitting in the dark feeling overwhelmed when God comes to him in a vision. Abram is quick to point out his dilemma to God.