Our readings today tell us more about Abram’s life. We see him taking care of Lot, interacting with Melchizedek, and entering a covenant with God. Abram trusts God. God counts that as righteousness to Abram. That’s one theme that these readings resonate with. When Abram trusts in God, God blesses him with victory, with a promise, and with a covenantal relationship. His trust in God leads him to tithe to Melchizedek, a priest of God. In this action, Abram physically demonstrates his trust by surrendering his wealth. Alternatively, when he takes matters into his own hands with Hagar, it results in strife and conflict between Sarai, Hagar, and Abram. This thread of trust in God runs through the entirety of Scripture. Here we witness the unchanging character of God that calls us righteous today because of our faith in Him and in His Son.
Today’s B.I.B.L.E. Takeaways:
Blessings from God
In these chapters we see God blessing Abram with victory in battle and with the promise of a son. We also see God promise to walk with Abram, now Abraham, and his descendants in Genesis 17:5-8. The covenant found here finds its ultimate fulfillment in Christ and points us to the Savior.
Instructions for Us
Abram provides examples for us to follow today. First, he tithes to Melchizedek. We can follow this example by giving regularly to the church to praise God and to communicate our trust that He will take care of us. Second, Abram has faith in God that God credits to him as righteousness. We can follow this example by deeply rooting our lives in faith.
This passage begins a covenant that binds Israel throughout the Old Testament, a covenant that Jesus references in His ministry on Earth, and a covenant that He fulfilled on Calvary’s cross. These chapters also see the beginning of several of the people groups that we will come across in the rest of the Old Testament with Hagar as their matriarch.
This text contains plenty for us to grapple with. We see Abram engaging in slavery following his battle in Genesis 15:24, we see God instructing Hagar to return to Sarai in Genesis 16:9, and we see a reference to the wrath of God in Genesis 15:16 that will be doled out to the Amorites later. We struggle with the way people relate to each other in slavery, in abusive relationships, and in war. We struggle with God’s willingness to interact within these broken relationships that humanity operates in, praying that He would come down and repair them.
I have always found Genesis 14:18-20 fascinating because the Bible doesn’t tell us much more about Melchizedek until Hebrews extensively uses him as an archetype for Jesus. I also love Genesis 15:6 which points us to a relationship with God based on faith, not based on our worthiness.
Topics to Pray About:
- Thank God for all the ways He blesses you.
- Confess to God the parts of your life you don’t trust Him with.
- Ask God to bless you and to lead you to bless others.
In His Service,