SUBJ: The call of Abraham and the
faith manifested in his regenerated response as a picture of all in
coming to Christ and the reason he is called the father of the faithful.
AIM: That we should remember the
awful circumstance that was ours before the Lord was pleased to reveal
Himself to us and in us.
INTR: Abraham is the central figure
of the Old Testament (besides the Lord, of course) in that the covenant
of salvation was manifested to Him and the promise of Christ and all
blessedness is promised to him.
1. We note the claims of the
Pharisees that are made regarding heritage but in total absence of the
faith which Christ exposed by the very testimony of Abraham.
note not only the promise of Christ through Abraham but also the
prominent place he occupies in the lineage of Christ.
3. It is in
Abraham that Old Testament saints were shown the nature of true faith
and the same continues to be a powerful example to us to this day.
THESIS: In Abraham we see
preciously the operations of grace, the sovereign determinations of God,
and the faith that produces obedience to the ultimate degree.
The conversion and the call of Abraham (v. 1)
1. The condition in
which he was found as is recorded in the last of chapter 11.
was chosen from a family of idolaters of the Babylonian sort: And Joshua
said unto all the people, Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, Your
fathers dwelt on the other side of the flood in old time, even Terah,
the father of Abraham, and the father of Nachor: and they served other
gods. Joshua 24:2.
2) The impossibility of the circumstance humanly
speaking is witnessed thusly: 1 Hearken to me, ye that follow after
righteousness, ye that seek the LORD: look unto the rock whence ye are
hewn, and to the hole of the pit whence ye are digged. 2 Look unto
Abraham your father, and unto Sarah that bare you: for I called him
alone, and blessed him, and increased him. Isaiah 51:1-2. – The
inference is that Abraham’s state was like the rock and the pit.
It is Stephen who makes it clear that a miraculous work was done in
Abraham and we note: 2 And he said, Men, brethren, and fathers, hearken;
The God of glory appeared unto our father Abraham, when he was in
Mesopotamia, before he dwelt in Charran, 3 And said unto him, Get thee
out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and come into the land which I
shall shew thee. Acts 7:2-3.
1) Why there? And it is certain that it
was the Lord who made the choice and not Abraham.
2) The manner of
our Lord’s appearance to Abraham speaks to that seen in others such as
Paul: 15 But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother's
womb, and called me by his grace, 16 To reveal his Son in me, that I
might preach him among the heathen; immediately I conferred not with
flesh and blood: Galatians 1:15-16.
3. But we would pay special
attention to the way it was received and that in the words of Jesus:
Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad.
II. The separation of Abraham (v. 1b)
was 75 and called to leave the only land and way of life he had ever
known; it is implied that separation was from all attachments to the
people and the place.
2. Although the initial departure was in the
company of his father and family, the separation would soon be complete
and final (The Lord was specific in including kindred and near family).
3. He did not know and was not told to where he was going.
are no conditions with God – coming to Him is absolute
2) Faith does
not question – it trusts!
3) So we hear the Apostle: Wherefore come
out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not
the unclean thing; and I will receive you, 2 Corinthians 6:17.
same conditions apply to all who come to Jesus – earthly relationships
are no longer the essential (this does not mean that we cut them off,
but we do not cultivate earthly ties at the expense of our fellowship
with Christ and His people).
III. The Promise (vv. 2-3)
promise made to Abraham remains in force and has been forever sealed in
Christ Jesus our Lord and we have a claim to it by faith.
are six elements to this promise:
1) I will make of thee a great
nation – Not only the physical nation of Israel, but the Israel of God
including all who are of the faith.
2) I will make thy name great and
we are preaching it today and consider that we: …rather rejoice, because
your names are written in heaven. Luke 10:20.
3) I will bless thee –
and he did in bringing Isaac and ultimately Christ into the world and so
are we: So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful
Abraham. Galatians 3:9.
4) Thou shalt be a blessing – we are drawing
as much from him now and we are so directed: But I say unto you, Love
your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you,
and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; Matthew
5:44. And we are taught “To speak evil of no man…Titus 3:2”
5) I will
bless them that bless thee and curse them which curse thee – A promise
to others and protection for us as we remember: But whoso shall offend
one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him
that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in
the depth of the sea. Matthew 18:6.
6) And all families of the earth
to be blessed and so it is in Christ that we are included and so with
the Apostle we observe, 34 Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, Of a
truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons: 35 But in every
nation he that feareth him, and worketh righteousness, is accepted with
him. Acts 10:34-35.