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FAITH


 

To have faith, is easy to say, but not that easy to do sometimes.

 

Let’s look at Abraham and Sarah. 

 

Abram did not have a child and he thought that a child born in his house would be his heir.

 

Gen 15:3  Then Abram said, "Look, You have given me no offspring; indeed one born in my house is my heir!"

 

God corrected Abram and told him that He would be the father of his heir.

 

Gen 15:4  And behold, the word of the LORD came to him, saying, "This one shall not be your heir, but one who will come from your own body shall be your heir."

 

God told Abram that his children would be like the stars in number, and Abraham believed.

 

Gen 15:5  Then He brought him outside and said, "Look now toward heaven, and count the stars if you are able to number them." And He said to him, "So shall your descendants be."

Gen 15:6  And he believed in the LORD, and He accounted it to him for righteousness.

 

God told Abram that He had a plan for him and a reason for bringing him into the Promised Land. It was to give the land to him and to his children also.

 

Gen 15:7  Then He said to him, "I am the LORD, who brought you out of Ur of the Chaldeans, to give you this land to inherit it."

 

Gen 15:18  On the same day the LORD made a covenant with Abram, saying: "To your descendants I have given this land, from the river of Egypt to the great river, the River Euphrates

 

Abram was 85 years old and he was to become a father, Sarai was 75 years old at this stage.

Now if you know a couple who are about this age, you would realise that to have a child would be impossible.

No doubt Abram and Sarai, thought this too. They needed to be patient, and wait on God, but they did not do that. Sarah thought it would be a good idea to give her hand maid to Abram, she was young, and Sarai was passed bearing age. Abram and Sarai, had been childless for years at this time. 

 

So Abram went into Hagar, the hand maid and she conceived.

 

In our spiritual lives, God takes us from a place we were comfortable and puts us in a place which may be difficult for us, but this is for a reason, God has a plan for us, we need to have faith, and rely on God to show us what He has in mind for us. Unfortunately we are impatient people and we want everything done yesterday. God does not work this way, He will do things in His time, and He expects us to demonstrate patience and faith during this time.

 

Easily said but hard to do…………back to Abram.

 

What a problem they had, they now had a child born by Hagar, and she and Sarai, did not get along.

 

Gen 16:6  So Abram said to Sarai, "Indeed your maid is in your hand; do to her as you please." And when Sarai dealt harshly with her, she fled from her presence.

 

The story picks up again when Ishmael is 13 years old and Abram is 99 years old, and Sarai is 89 years old.

 

Now that is very old, and of course still far too old to become parents, but God had a plan and age does not matter to God.

 

God changed the names of Abram and Sarai to Abraham and Sarah, and told them they were going to be parents, and that Sarah would conceive to her husband Abraham.

 

Gen 17:16  And I will bless her and also give you a son by her; then I will bless her, and she shall be a mother of nations; kings of peoples shall be from her."

 

Abraham just could not believe that he would be a father to Sarah’s child, they had been trying to have a baby for many many years, and now it was physically impossible at this stage of their lives.

 

Gen 17:17  Then Abraham fell on his face and laughed, and said in his heart, "Shall a child be born to a man who is one hundred years old? And shall Sarah, who is ninety years old, bear a child?"

 

God tells Abraham that Sarah will have a son in 12 months time.

 

Gen 17:21  But My covenant I will establish with Isaac, whom Sarah shall bear to you at this set time next year."

 

God had told Abraham that circumcision was a covenant between them, so Abraham circumcised all the men

 

Gen 17:24  Abraham was ninety-nine years old when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin.

Gen 17:25  And Ishmael his son was thirteen years old when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin.

Gen 17:26  That very same day Abraham was circumcised, and his son Ishmael;

Gen 17:27  and all the men of his house, born in the house or bought with money from a foreigner, were circumcised with him.

 

God appeared to Abraham again and Sarah laughed when she heard she was to become a mother at the age of 90.

 

Gen 18:9  Then they said to him, "Where is Sarah your wife?" So he said, "Here, in the tent."

Gen 18:10  And He said, "I will certainly return to you according to the time of life, and behold, Sarah your wife shall have a son." (Sarah was listening in the tent door which was behind him.)

Gen 18:11  Now Abraham and Sarah were old, well advanced in age; and Sarah had passed the age of childbearing.

Gen 18:12  Therefore Sarah laughed within herself, saying, "After I have grown old, shall I have pleasure, my lord being old also?"

Gen 18:13  And the LORD said to Abraham, "Why did Sarah laugh, saying, 'Shall I surely bear a child, since I am old?'

Gen 18:14  Is anything too hard for the LORD? At the appointed time I will return to you, according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son."

 

So Sarah had Isaac, which God had said would happen.

 

Gen 21:1  And the LORD visited Sarah as He had said, and the LORD did for Sarah as He had spoken.

Gen 21:2  For Sarah conceived and bore Abraham a son in his old age, at the set time of which God had spoken to him.

Gen 21:3  And Abraham called the name of his son who was born to him whom Sarah bore to him Isaac.

Gen 21:4  Then Abraham circumcised his son Isaac when he was eight days old, as God had commanded him.

Gen 21:5  Now Abraham was one hundred years old when his son Isaac was born to him.

Gen 21:6  And Sarah said, "God has made me laugh, and all who hear will laugh with me."

Gen 21:7  She also said, "Who would have said to Abraham that Sarah would nurse children? For I have borne him a son in his old age."

Gen 21:8  So the child grew and was weaned. And Abraham made a great feast on the same day that Isaac was weaned.

 

The birth of Isaac was a tremendous test of faith for Abraham and Sarah, but God continued to test Abraham. The following test showed just how obedient and faithful Abraham was. He was willing to kill his son to obey God. Of course God did not allow this to happen, but he wanted to see if Abraham would obey. What a wonderful servant Abraham was.

 

Gen 22:1  Now it came to pass after these things that God tested Abraham, and said to him, "Abraham!" And he said, "Here I am."

Gen 22:2  Then He said, "Take now your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you."

Gen 22:3  So Abraham rose early in the morning and saddled his donkey, and took two of his young men with him, and Isaac his son; and he split the wood for the burnt offering, and arose and went to the place of which God had told him.

 

This account is so heart wrenching, we can only imagine the pain and anguish, in Abraham’s heart as he set about offering up Isaac as a sacrifice.

 

Gen 22:7  But Isaac spoke to Abraham his father and said, "My father!" And he said, "Here I am, my son." Then he said, "Look, the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?"

Gen 22:8  And Abraham said, "My son, God will provide for Himself the lamb for a burnt offering." So the two of them went together.

Gen 22:9  Then they came to the place of which God had told him. And Abraham built an altar there and placed the wood in order; and he bound Isaac his son and laid him on the altar, upon the wood.

Gen 22:10  And Abraham stretched out his hand and took the knife to slay his son.

Gen 22:11  But the Angel of the LORD called to him from heaven and said, "Abraham, Abraham!" So he said, "Here I am."

Gen 22:12  And He said, "Do not lay your hand on the lad, or do anything to him; for now I know that you fear God, since you have not withheld your son, your only son, from Me."

 

Because of Abraham’s obedience God gave him a fantastic blessing of national proportions, his seed possessed the gates, and his seed was to be blessed as they grew to be nations.

 

Gen 22:16  and said: "By Myself I have sworn, says the LORD, because you have done this thing, and have not withheld your son, your only son

Gen 22:17  blessing I will bless you, and multiplying I will multiply your descendants as the stars of the heaven and as the sand which is on the seashore; and your descendants shall possess the gate of their enemies.

Gen 22:18  In your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice."