Please read through these five chapters in Genesis. It is a privilege to be able to read and study God’s word.
Genesis 13-18 We are going to cover five long chapters in Genesis. I want to cover some of the characteristics of Abram and Sarai. We could spend a year on these five chapters, but we are going to take a fast overview here.
ABRAM IS AN EXAMPLE OF MAN’S IMPERFECTION
Abram is a perfect example of the imperfection of God’s people. Even though we have a heart for God and want to do right and be perfect we fail. Abram had a habit of lying, but he listened to God and tried to obey. The beauty of the example of the characters of the Old Testament is that they are real. They mess up and God uses them anyway. Throughout the Bible you will see, it is all about our heart.
ABRAM WAS A PROBLEM SOLVER
In chapter 13 Abram and Lot are traveling together with their herds, flocks, and people. Disputes broke out. Look at how Abram handled this. He took control and came up with a plan to solve the problem. Abram was a problem solver. Next we see that Abram gave Lot the first choice. Abram was not greedy and let his nephew pick what looked like the best piece of ground. Abram didn’t bicker or complain, it just says Abram settled in the land of Canaan. Abram trusted God to take care of him, he wasn’t greedy, nor did he manipulate Lot to get the best.
What is so cool and you have to look close to see this but when Abram gave Lot what looked like the best, God then gave Abram more. We cannot out-give God and He loves cheerful generous kids.
ABRAM PURSUED HIS ENEMY TO SAVE LOT
ABRAM WAS BRAVE
In Chapter 14 we see that Lot was captured by the enemy. Abram mobilized his men, pursued the army. He had a battle plan and he attacked the enemies. Abram fought and got back all that the enemy had stolen. He brought back Lot, his possessions, and all the women and other captives. Abram was brave. He fought for family.
GIVING BACK TO GOD
A very key verse is when Melchizidek said, “And blessed by God Most High, who has defeated your enemies for you.” God gave Abram the victory. And then when God blessed Abram, Abram in turn gave back to God. This is the first record that one of God’s servants gave back a tenth of what he was given. Tithing is showing our appreciation for all that God has given us. God has given us everything we have, for us to give back a tenth is indeed very small.
A FAVORITE VERSE OF MINE–GENESIS 15:6
In chapter 15 is one of my favorite verses. It goes like this, “Do not be afraid Abram, for I will protect you, and your reward will be great.” and then Genesis 15:6 says, “And Abram believed the Lord, and the Lord counted him as righteous because of his faith.” Ask God to help you realize the depth of the relationship and trust that Abram had in God. We need this same kind of faith. God wants the same depth of relationship with each of us.
GOD APPEARED TO ABRAM, AND TOLD HIM WHAT TO DO
In chapter 17 we see Abram is 99 years old. God appeared to him and said, “Serve me faithfully and live a blameless life. I will make a covenant with you, by which I will guarantee to give you countless descendants.” A few verses later God says, “I will confirm my covenant with you…”
Isn’t this unbelievable. God gives a guarantee with his word to Abram. Pretty amazing. God doesn’t have to guarantee or confirm anything with us, He is God.
Abram was so blown away that he fell face down before the Lord.
ABRAHAM AND SARAH WERE NOT DISQUALIFIED BECAUSE THEY DOUBTED GOD
Genesis 17:17 and Genesis 18:13 Abraham laughed when God told him he would be a father at the age of 99. He didn’t have great faith, but doubted. Then in the next chapter when Sarah is told she will be a mother at the age of 90, she laughs. Sarah doubted also. God didn’t disqualify them for their doubt!
Doubt is a sin. When we have doubts, we repent. We ask God to forgive us and to increase our faith. We keep going.