Summary: This sermon teaches the believer about obedience to God through the example of Abraham
?TWO HALVES DON?T MAKE ONE WHOLE? GENESIS 11:31- 12:5
JOKE--- One of the regular ladies of the church ?Eunice? was cooking a pot of her famous beans for the church potluck. As she was just getting them on the stove her Grandson, ?Little George?, came running through the house, BB gun in one hand, and a handful of BBs in the other. Immediately she grabbed him and told him to go into the living room and quit running through the house. Well the phone rang, and boys will be boys? Little George came running back through the kitchen, missed a step, tripped and, naturally all the BBs landed right in the pot of beans.
Now after a few minutes of trying to get Eunice off the phone, Little George could think of no reason why he should risk punishment, so he said nothing. The dinner went well, and, as usual, the beans were one of the favorite dishes.
The next day, the church secretary, Jane, called and said, "Eunice, your beans were delicious as usual but what did you put in them this time?"
Eunice replied, "Nothing new, why do you ask?" "Well," said Jane, "this morning I bent over to feed the cat and I shot the canary..."
INTRO---You know, we are all like little George! And our disobedience can really bring pain to those around us (especially to our canaries). Abraham was no exception. He too was much like little George. God had told him exactly what he expected, even made him a promise, yet Abraham did his own thing anyway. As a result, he and countless others would suffer for his disobedience.
Abraham will forever be known as the father of our faith, but we must remember that his faith in God was developed through many years of mistakes.
TRANS--- Abraham grew up in Ur of the Chaldeans. Ur was an important city in the ancient world. Archaeologists have discovered evidence of a flourishing civilization there in Abraham?s day. The city carried on trade and had a vast library.
JOSHUA 24:2-- Joshua said to all the people, "This is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: ’Long ago your forefathers, including Terah the father of Abraham and Nahor, lived beyond the River and worshiped other gods.
Terah left Ur to go to Canaan, the promised land, but settled in Haran instead. Why did he stop halfway? We are not told, but what we do know is that God chose Abraham and singled him out from among his fellow-idolaters, that he might reserve a people for himself.
Abraham was tested as to whether he loved God more than everything and everyone, and whether he would willingly leave all to go with God. And yet we find that Abraham stumbled time and time again because of his reliance on his family and his father?s household.
God?s dealings with Abraham began with a first a covenant and then a command.
A FOUR FOLD COVENANT
1. I Will Make You Into A Great Nation And I Will Bless You? God established a covenant with Abram, telling him that he would found a great nation.
a. Remember vs. 30: Now Sarah was barren; she had no children.
2. I Will Make Your Name Great, And You Will Be A Blessing? God promised to bless Abraham and make him great, but there was one condition.
a. Abraham had to do what God wanted him to do.
3. I Will Bless Those Who Bless You, And Whoever Curses You I Will Curse? God promised Abraham security in the face of any foe he may encounter.
4. All Peoples On Earth Will Be Blessed Through You?Israel the nation would come from Abraham. He was to follow God and influence all whom he came in contact with.
a. Through Abraham?s family tree, Jesus Christ was born to save humanity.
b. Through Christ and His New Covenant between himself and the believer people can have a personal relationship with God and therefore, eternal life.
A FOUR FOLD COMMAND
1. Leave Your Country? Abraham was 75 years old and his father had just died. Undoubtedly he was now a very wealthy man because he owned his father?s household.
2. Leave Your People? He was to leave his friends.
3. Leave Your Father?s Household? He was to leave his newly found inheritance and all his possessions: slaves, animals, gold and silver, relatives, everything.
4. Go To The Land I Will Show You? The actual Hebrew is lech lecha? ?GO FOR YOURSELF?, or ?GO BY YOURSELF?.
My friends, just as He always does with each individual today, God had called Abraham out personally; ?just Abraham and his wife? apart from any possessions or friends or other relatives. Let?s Look and see what Abraham did, and more importantly what Abraham learned.