ABRAHAM HOSTS GOD’S MESSENGERS
Genesis 18:1 – 8“And said, My Lord, if now I have found favour in thy sight, pass not away, I pray thee, from thy servant...” Genesis 18:3 Abraham took a strategic position to get some freshness. He had actually passed through a series of experiences which could have overwhelmed him. At that point, the Lord appeared unto him. However, until he changed his focus and “looked up”, he never noticed that God was with him. The truth is that we severally make attempts at re-drafting plans for God. We tend to look up to Him when it matters most. At the very moment a man is able to lift his head to the Lord and listen to the dictates of the spirit, things will begin to fall in place for him. Abraham could be hospitable because he no longer dwelt on his troubles. The heat within and without had little impact. He no longer gazed at his troubles but he looked up to God and lived a life of total service to God. Note that he never served the guests in anticipation of a gift; he simply committed himself to total service. He gave his best and made all the members of his household do the same. As we set out today, a complete gaze on God is all we need. Your present situations are inconsequential, change your focus from your troubles to the sovereign God and get committed to His business. Just like Abraham, honour Him with your best.
- Birthday Blessing: What then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us?” – Romans 8:31
GOD’S COVENANT EXTENDED THROUGH ISAAC
Genesis 17:15-22"But my covenant will I establish with Isaac…" Gen. 17:21 I had an appointment to catch, I woke up quite early, got set for the trip, moved to my car and saw a deflated tyre. I knew the best way to make that journey easy for me was to change the deflated tyre. What if I chose not to change the tyre? What if I chose to kneel and pray for a restoration of the deflated tyre? A precondition for the Abrahamic blessing and birthing of a son was the change of name. For several reasons Sarah could have decided to maintain the name she was already famous by but she did not. We tend to give several excuses to back our actions even when they go against God's instructions. Even when we do not fully understand, total obedience to the word is essential. Abraham and Sarah had earlier taken the short cut to fulfilling God’s word. Abraham birthed Ishmael who looked so much like God's promise but wasn’t. People tend to affirm God’s presence with results. The results might look original but it can never be once the procedure laid out has been faulted. Ishmael had been prepared to fit into God’s promise, however, the fulfilment of God’s word would tarry, and it will surely come to pass. We need to consciously and continually live our lives to pattern to fit into God's agenda.
- Birthday Blessing: “But by the grace of God, I am what I am, and His grace to me was not without effect…” 1 Corinthians 15:10.
ABRAHAM BELIEVES GOD
Genesis 15:1-6“And he believed in the LORD; and he counted it to him for righteousness”. Genesis 15:6 Everything that surrounded Abraham was negativity with regards to the promise of a child. Age was no longer on the side of himself and his wife. His heart had grown weary. However, at the slightest opportunity to communicate with God, he had a definite request to make of God. He didn’t mince words, he poured his heart out. God played his part by giving Abraham the promise. It was left to Abraham to believe and he did. Every day, we get faced with several challenges and experiences of life. We run to God and he responds most of the time. However, because our minds are filled with many other things, we tend to convince God to understand our views. Abraham acted different, he believed God’s word. , Though, he had no child at that moment, he believed God that he would have a large family (Hebrew11:1). Can we also begin to look away from those troubles and cast our eyes instead on the word of God? The choice actually is ours. As we focus on God and believe him, he fulfils his promises. Always remember that he is not a man that he should lie. Today, your life must be guided by your trust in God, not your thoughts, but God’s word. Even when the situation seems overwhelming, it is still under God.
- Birthday Blessing: “… and surely, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:20b
GENTILES SHARE IN ABRAHAM’S PROMISE
Gal. 3:6-9, 13-14“That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.” Galatians 3:14 A lot of times, the decision a man takes goes a long way in affecting several other lives. We are daily faced with conflicting situations that sometimes get us confused as to which path to follow. At such times, the word of God should be the basis of any decision we make. Abraham chose to believe God, and placed his absolute trust in God. He left what he had for what he was promised. Humanly speaking, this was leaving ‘’certainty for uncertainty’’ but, since God said it, the case got closed. This singular act in Genesis 12:1-4 birthed a lifelong heritage: ‘’all nations will be blessed through you.’’ The beauty of it all is that this promise exists till date. It can be received through the same procedure, ‘faith’. Our true Christian life is defined by absolute faith in Christ. The circumstances surrounding our birth, our place of birth, family history and the like have little or no significance here. Our belief in Christ is the password to unlocking the promises as given to Abraham. How often does your life agree with the word of God? Keep it aligned. Live in total obedience, then, you can activate those promises as presented in Genesis 12:1-4. I choose to live my life on God’s Word.
- Birthday Blessing: “Stand firm and see the deliverance the LORD will give you.” 2 Chronicles 20:17
HAGAR BIRTHS ABRAHAM’S SON, ISHMAEL
Genesis 16:7-11, 15-16“And Hagar bare Abram a son: and Abram called his son's name, which Hagar bare, Ishmael.” Ge-nesis 16:15 Sometimes when we get promotions or blessings that beat our imagination, managing such breakthroughs becomes an issue. Hagar couldn’t manage her new status in Abraham’s house successfully and that made her a fugitive. She had to flee from her place of comfort. She must have exhibited some good traits to warrant her selection by Sarah from the lot of slaves at her disposal. The extent to which we can manage success determines the height of success we’ll attain. Hagar had to flee from her comfort zone but mercy found her. Hence, while in the wilderness, ‘the Fountain of Life’ found her and led her to a well. The fountain is a place of renewal of strength. Hagar’s obedience to divine instruction makes her relevant in history till date. Genesis 16:9b says “Return to thy mistress, and submit thyself under her hands.” In the same way, God wants all those, running helter-skelter to return now to Him and be totally submissive to His dictates, then shall such people’s seeds be multiplied exceedingly. What do you think would have happened had Hagar disobeyed? Hagar actually did return, submitted and bore a son. Our labours will be limited and our troubles eliminated if today, we return to our Master and submit absolutely to Him.
- Birthday Blessing: “Fear not, for I have redeemed you… you are mine.” Isaiah 43:1b.
GOD HONOURS HIS COVENANTS WITH ABRAHAM
“He remembers his covenant forever… with Abraham.” Psalms 105:8-9aMan will forever remain man and God will remain God. Man is limited in all things but God is not. He is a covenant-keeping God while most of the time man finds it difficult to keep a promise. After many years of promise of an heir (Isaac) to Abraham and the promise to make him the father of many nations, God proved Himself faithful. Till today, Israel remains a blessed Nation no one can curse or molest. God's words can be trusted because He watches over His words to bring it to pass. Biologically and even physically, it is almost impossible to believe that Abraham and Sarah could still have a child of their own. But God is not moved by human philosophy or medical science. He is moved by His words and that is all He needs to make the impossible possible. What seemingly impossible situation have you found yourself in? Search the scriptures for God's word concerning that situation and remind Him in the place of prayer. Many believers suffer because they are too lazy to discover God's truth about their situations. We prefer to allow things take their natural course than to allow the divine hand change the order of things in our favour. God is faithful to His Word. Whatever He has said He will do.
- Birthday Blessing: “I will establish my covenant as an everlasting covenant between me and you and your descendants after you...” Genesis 17:7a
GOD’S BLESSINGS FROM NOAH TO ABRAHAM
Genesis 11:10, 27, 31-32; 12:1-4“I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing...and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.” Gen 12:2-3 The doctor demands entire obedience from his patient in all that pertains to medicine, diet, rest, exercise, not because he loves to lord it over them, but because he/she wants his patient to be in good health. The more results his/her care produces, the more satisfied he/she will be. When we diligently follow God's instructions, the ultimate result for us is unlimited blessing. Noah followed God's instructions in building the ark that preserved humanity and his family became the biological source of every other people in the world. Abraham followed God's instruction to leave his father's house to an unknown destination and through him all nations of the world became blessed. Every believer can lay claim to Abraham's blessings because he obeyed God. Every instruction of God is for a purpose and sometimes until we obey the instruction we cannot discover its whole essence. Likewise, every promise of God is attached to a specific instruction. You cannot enjoy the blessings of God without yielding to His instructions. You also can be a recipient of God’s grace and become a blessing to your generation; He only needs your cooperation and obedience in your walk with Him. Enter a covenant relationship with Him today and enjoy His unlimited blessing and favour.
- Birthday Blessing: “I will go before you and will level the mountains...” Isaiah 45:2
NOAH TO ABRAHAM, FAITH IN ACTION
Hebrews 11:4-10“And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him” Heb. 11:6 A minister asked a poor woman, “What is faith?” She replied: “I am ignorant, and I cannot answer well, but I think it is taking God at His word.” In the Old Testament, Noah and Abraham are examples of people who had a close walk with God by faith. This ‘faith’ produced results in all areas of their lives. Evidences of their faith are seen in their sacrificial offerings and obedience to God’s instruction at all times. The Scripture says that these people “looked forward to a city with foundations whose architect is God.”God honours faith and anyone who comes to God must be courageous enough to believe what has not been seen as if they were. Anyone who will have a successful walk with God must be willing to see beyond the present and the physical into the future that only God has prepared. We must set our eyes on things that are beyond our present circumstances and put our faith in God who controls all situations. How much faith do you have in God? Do you seek Him earnestly to attract His attention and reward? Let God have His way in your life even if He wants to ‘interrupt’ your agenda.
- Birthday Blessing: “I will look on you with favor and make you fruitful and increase your numbers, and I will keep my covenant with you.” Leviticus 26:9
ABRAM, SARAI, AND LOT IN CANAAN
Genesis 12:5-9“He took his wife Sarai, his nephew Lot, all the possessions they had accumulated and the people they had acquired in Haran, and they set out for the land of Canaan...”Gen.12:5 Sometimes God gives instructions that are difficult to comprehend by the human mind. Such instructions might even appear contrary to human reasoning. The truth, however, is that even if the human mind cannot conceive it, as long as it is God, it must be obeyed. The covenant God of all times single-handedly took Abram out of his obscurity and had a covenant relationship with him. Abram believed God by faith even when he did not know where he was to go. He took all that belonged to him, left his father's land where he already had influence and settled in Canaan. Abram sojourned as an alien in the land he was to inherit. Sometimes, God's instructions might take from us more than we bargained for. It might mean turning your back on your comfort zone or even saying no to things that are rightfully yours. But at the end, we will discover that in losing those things we have gained much more. In Abram's journey, he built altars to strengthen his relationship with God and to remind himself of God's promises and instructions. On your path to destiny, constantly remind yourself of God's instructions so that the devil will not distract you and make you settle for less than you deserve. Diligently follow God's instructions for your life and you will not miss your reward.
- Birthday Blessing: “For I am the Lord, your God, who... says to you, do not fear; I will help you.” Isaiah 41:13
THE LORD SCATTERS THE PEOPLE
Genesis 11:1-9“Come, let us go down and confuse their language so they will not understand each other." So the Lord scattered them from there over all the earth...” Genesis 11:7-8, NIV God wants His children to willingly walk in His plan. However, sometimes He uses circumstances to force some people to walk in His will. This was the case of the people building the Tower of Babel. From the passage, God’s intention is that man should be fruitful, multiply, and subdue the earth, but the people rebelled and decided to build the Tower of Babel. They planned to make a name for themselves and it countered God’s idea. God had to break their bond of unity by confusing their language and they were scattered. Do not wait until God forces you to do His will for your life. As a believer, you have the responsibility to discover the plan of God for you and to ensure that you walk in it. If you have discovered yours and you are sitting idle, it is better to start work on it immediately than wait for God to use circumstance(s) to push you out of your comfort zone or replace you with someone else. Whether He pushes you out or replaces you, know that the work of God will be done. In what ways are you rebelling against your Maker? What assignments have God given to you and for what reason are you reluctant? Today, you are challenged to make your ways right with God and find rest for your soul.
- Birthday Blessing: “In famine He will deliver you from death, and in battle from the stroke of the sword.” Job 5:20