Guest speaker Elder Steve Pomeroy
SPEC-78-200419 - length: 39:35 - taught on Apr, 19 2020
April 19, 2020
Today we will look at the story of Abraham’s faith and how all believers are blessed through him and what this means for all of us who are in Christ.
ROM 4:3 For what does the Scripture say? "ABRAHAM BELIEVED GOD, AND IT WAS CREDITED TO HIM AS RIGHTEOUSNESS."
Rom 4: 3-8 continues to explain that righteousness is by faith, not works
ROM 4:9-12 explains the significance of righteousness by faith
Since Abraham’s faith is so often mentioned in the Bible, there are many lessons we can learn. First of all, Abraham was justified by faith. God has ordained that all should be justified by faith.
That means we are declared blameless in His sight by faith in Jesus Christ, his blood sacrifice and resurrection.
Paul noted that Abraham’s belief was unhampered by the fact that he was almost a hundred years old; he was not weak in faith. He was strong in faith.
Faith is a deep conviction that God’s words are true and that God will perform all that He promises. Abraham simply believed that God would do what He said.
Nothing is too hard for God. Nothing is impossible for God. That is an example for all of us today, that our faith should be strong in God.
LUK 1:37 "For nothing will be impossible with God."
HEB 11:8 By faith Abraham, when he was called, obeyed by going out to a place which he was to receive for an inheritance; and he went out, not knowing where he was going.
HEB 11:10 for he was looking for the city which has foundations, whose architect and builder is God.
This was Abraham’s first act of faith in God. He had a nice life in Ur of the Chaldeans and Haran as he had married the beautiful Sarai.
This was while he was still called Abram as he had not yet been recognized by the Lord who changed his name to Abraham. We see the story in GEN 12:1-7.
So Abraham obeyed God and left his nice life to go to the land that God on faith that God would do as He promised.
What happened next could be not be classified as an act of faith in God.
Well number one God didn’t tell Abram to go to Egypt, and He didn’t tell Abram to deceive the Egyptians by telling them Sarai was his sister to save his own skin which caused Pharaoh to sin in adultery.
(even though she was his half sister she was also his wife)
Abraham will repeat this deception about Sarah with King Abimelech in chapter 20 but the Lord prevented Abimelech from touching her.
Well it seems the Lord blessed Abram even though he had sinned by going against the Lords command by going to Egypt and deceiving Pharaoh about Sarai. Even though man can fail God will not fail to keep His promises.
Now Abram is back in the will of God in the Land which God had promised him and with blessings of prosperity as well.
The story continues in GEN 13:14 with Abrams nephew Lot moving to Sodom in Jordan but Abram remaining in the land God had showed him.
Here God gives Abraham a promise of more land and promises to bless him with many descendants.
Abram began to wonder how he would have all the descendants God had promised since he was getting old and without an heir.
After all he was 75 years old when he started this journey. We see in chapter 15 he gets another promise from God.
GEN 15:6 is referenced by Paul in ROM 4:3, also in GAL 3:6 and is another example of Abraham’s faith. He didn’t do anything for God to deserve this righteousness but received it from the Lord freely as a result of simple faith in God.
“some people claim there’s a woman to blame”
Is it Sarai’s fault or is Abram just taking matters in his own hands instead of waiting on God to do what He had promised more than once?
And that was how Ishmael was born, the father of all the Arabs. But that’s a story for another time. Abram was 86 years old at the time of Ishmael’s birth.
Abram becomes Abraham the father of the Jews and father of all believers in God and Christ. He is at this time identified as the recipient of the Abrahamic covenant.
The three main tenants of the Abrahamic Covenant:
3. The Promise of Blessings for the World (GEN 12:3)
The next exciting blessing for Abraham and Sarah is told to Abraham by God in chapter 17 verse 15. This is the fulfillment of the earlier promises of God to bless Abraham with many descendants that we saw in chapter 15
So Abraham is somewhat skeptical and asks God if this is possible that a man 100 years old with a 90 year old wife can really have a child and suggests to God that He could use Ishmael to fulfill His promise of many descendants.
Sarah seems to have her doubts as well but nothing is impossible with God. The Hebrew word Isaac means laughter and God told Abraham to name his son Isaac knowing that they both would laugh at the promise of a child at their age.
Again in Hebrews 11 we hear more of Abraham’s faith.
HEB 11:17 By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac, and he who had received the promises was offering up his only begotten son;
Notice here that Abraham said “we will worship and return to you”. Abraham believed even though he was to sacrifice Isaac that the Lord had promised to continue the covenant with Isaac and had faith that God would deliver what He promised.
This promise of Blessing to all the nations of the earth means to the Jews and gentiles through our Lord Jesus Christ.
Abraham must have believed that God had a very good reason for asking him to sacrifice Isaac, and that somehow Isaac would have to be raised from the dead to fulfill the promises God had made concerning him.
This was the ultimate act of faith by Abraham and it is hard to imagine being faced with that kind of test.
Abraham’s willingness to sacrifice his son was a foreshadow of God the Father’s willingness to give His only begotten Son (Christ) as a sacrifice.
We who are of the faith of Abraham also believe that God can resurrect the dead. This was proven beyond any doubt by the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
What a great story of faith. Abraham was a man of great faith but was he perfect?
No, he had his doubts and failures like all of us.
His righteousness was not from the law or any works but from the grace of God through faith.
ROM 4:13 For the promise to Abraham or to his descendants that he would be heir of the world was not through the Law, but through the righteousness of faith.
ROM 4:16 For this reason it is by faith, in order that it may be in accordance with grace, so that the promise will be guaranteed to all the descendants, not only to those who are of the Law, but also to those who are of the faith of Abraham, who is the father of us all,
GAL 3:6 Even so Abraham BELIEVED GOD, AND IT WAS RECKONED TO HIM AS RIGHTEOUSNESS.
GAL 3:7 Therefore, be sure that it is those who are of faith who are sons of Abraham.
GAL 3:9 So then those who are of faith are blessed with Abraham, the believer.
GAL 3:29 And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham's descendants, heirs according to promise.
Nothing is too hard for God. Nothing is impossible for God.