Genesis 21 & 22: Will You Obey God?
Verse of the Day: (22;18) And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice.
1. Open (21:1-34)
And God opened her eyes, and she saw a well of water; and she went, and filled the bottle with water, and gave the lad drink. (21:19)
God blessed the faith of Abraham and Sarah and blessed them with their firstborn son, Isaac, at their ripe old age. (Hebrews 11:11). However, Abraham and Sarah had to make Hagar, their Egyptian handmaid, together with her son, Ishmael, born with Abraham, to leave them, and wandered in the wilderness of Beersheba. Both Hagar and Ishmael almost died as they had finished all their water in the hot desert, when God opened Hagar eyes and miraculously gave them a well of water to drink and survive. God promised Hagar that her son, Ishmael, shall be a father of a great nation. God is good all the time, as He not only blessed Isaac but also Ishmael and made them fathers of great nations!
2. Offer (22:1-14)
And he said, Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of. (22:2)
God tested Abraham by commanding him to offer his only son, Isaac, whom he loved, as a burnt offering. Though Abraham could not fully understand why God’s command of him to offer his son when He had promised him that he shall be a father of a great nation, he obeyed. However, God sent His angel to stop Abraham from almost slaying his son, and provided a ram from the wild as a burnt offering instead of his son. Indeed, God shall provide for all our needs. Though in my life, God allowed my younger son, Benjamin, to be offered to Him, and there was no ram to substitute his death, yet God took him straight to heaven like Enoch and Elijah to be with Him forever! (Genesis 5:24, 2 Kings 2:11)
3. Obey (22:15-24)
That in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore; and thy seed shall possess the gate of his enemies; (22:17)
God blessed Abraham as a father of many nations because he obeyed God and did not refrain from offering his only son to God. This was the prophecy to the people during the Old Testament period, that one day, God, the heavenly Father, shall offer His only begotten Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, to come to this earth to die for the sins of the whole world, and the third day He rose again conquering death, and whoever believes in Him shall never perish in fiery hell, but have everlasting life with God in heaven. (John 3:16)
Prayer of the Day:
Dearest God, please help me to obey You even if I do not fully understand Your will.
Genesis 19 & 20: Are You Looking To God?
Verse of the Day: (19:26) But his wife looked back from behind him, and she became a pillar of salt.
1. Lot (19:1-22)
And there came two angels to Sodom at even; and Lot sat in the gate of Sodom: and Lot seeing them rose up to meet them; and he bowed himself with his face toward the ground; (19:1)
Lot was full of hospitality as he kept persuading God’s angels to his home though they were reluctant to inconvenient him. Lot not only gave them a place to sleep, and prepared a feast for them, he was also willing to sacrifice his 2 precious daughters for them, as the men of Sodom outside his house was knocking at his door wanting him to turn over God’s angels to them so that they could sleep with them! However God’s angels blinded these men of Sodom! Indeed, Lot was a righteous man in the world of wicked men.
2. Look (19:23-38)
And it came to pass, when God destroyed the cities of the plain, that God remembered Abraham, and sent Lot out of the midst of the overthrow, when he overthrew the cities in the which Lot dwelt. (19:29)
Before God destroyed Sodom, He remembered Abraham’s plead with Him to spare the righteous people, namely Lot and his family, and so He would rescue them out of Sodom, provided they would not look back at Sodom. However, Lot’s wife disobeyed God, as she looked back, and became a pillar of salt. Subsequently, Lot and his 2 daughters also sinned against God, when his daughters in order to preserve their father’s lineage, made their father drunk, and committed incest with him. It was a sin that they regretted, as until today, Lot’s descendants are the enemies of Abraham’s. Let us look to God only, and obey Him, so that we shall escape His severe judgment, and receive His richest blessings!
3. Live (20:1-18)
Now therefore restore the man his wife; for he is a prophet, and he shall pray for thee, and thou shalt live: and if thou restore her not, know thou that thou shalt surely die, thou, and all that are thine. (20:7)
God not only called Abraham a father of many nations, but also His prophet. However Abraham failed God, as he lied to Abimelech, the king of Gerar, that Sarah his wife was his sister, as he feared for his life. Before Abimelech could marry Sarah, God spoke to him in a dream that Abraham was His prophet, and Sarah was his wife, and if he would marry her, he and his family would die. Not only Abimelech did not marry Sarah, but he blessed Abraham with much of his possessions. God then blessed Abimelech and his family with children as He had closed all the wombs of his family because he almost took Sarah to be his wife. Let us look to God, and live for Him, as He is indeed the true God!
Prayer of the Day:
Dearest God, please help me to look to You and You only.
Genesis 17 & 18: Are You Perfect?
Verse of the Day: (17:1) And when Abram was ninety years old and nine, the LORD appeared to Abram, and said unto him, I am the Almighty God; walk before me, and be thou perfect.
1. Perfect (17:1-7)
Neither shall thy name any more be called Abram, but thy name shall be Abraham; for a father of many nations have I made thee. (17:5)
God chose Abram to be the father of many nations because he already seen Abram’s heart that he sought to walk before Him and was a perfect and mature man of God. No doubt no one can be truly perfect, yet with God, He can make a perfect man out of imperfection, and that was what God did in Abram’s life. God changed Abram’s name from Abram which meant “exalted father” to Abraham which meant “father of many nations”. Though both Abraham and Sarah doubted God’s promise to give them a child of their own, and Sarah even laughed at God’s promise, yet God still fulfilled His promise, and grant them their firstborn son, Isaac! This is the marvellous work of God!
2. Possession (17:8-27)
And I will give unto thee, and to thy seed after thee, the land wherein thou art a stranger, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession; and I will be their God. (17:8)
God gave Abraham the earthly Promised Land which was the land of Canaan, as well as the heavenly Promised Land which is Heaven, His home, and also to all who would believe in Him. It is an everlasting possession whether on earth or in heaven when the people of Israel choose to believe God. Today, the people of Israel, has yet to possess the entire land of Canaan as they fail to believe God. However, during the Millennium kingdom, which is after the Rapture (the period when all Christians are promoted to heaven) and the 7 years Tribulation (the period when Satan shall rule the earth), Christ shall reign on earth, and the people of Israel shall then possess the entire land of Canaan!
3. Peradventure (18:1-33)
And he said, Oh let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak yet but this once: Peradventure ten shall be found there. And he said, I will not destroy it for ten’s sake. (18:32)
Abraham loved all, not just his loved ones, as he pleaded with God to spare the people of Sodom and Gomorrah. Abraham bargained with God, and finally God agreed to spare Sodom and Gomorrah peradventure there were 10 righteous people. Alas, there were only 3 righteous people, namely, Lot and his 2 daughters (Lot’s wife turned her back and became a pillar of salt!), and God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah. (Genesis 19:24-25).
Prayer of the Day:
Dearest God, please help me to be perfect as You are perfect.