Today’s Scripture readings from Genesis tells us more about Abraham’s life and we see God doing incredible, seemingly impossible things. God promises to bring Abraham and Sarah a true born son despite the reality that both were well beyond the age for having children. Then the impossible things of God take a darker turn. God warns Abraham about the fate of Sodom, and we think to ourselves “it’s impossible that God would destroy a city.” We hear Abraham ask for God to spare the cities for the sake of even ten righteous people, and we think to ourselves “it’s impossible that there aren’t ten righteous people in the city.” Finally, we witness God destroying Sodom and turning Lot’s wife to dust, and we think to ourselves “it’s impossible for God to turn someone to salt.” The core issue for all of these “impossibilities” is our framework of thinking. It isn’t impossible for God to destroy a city; God punishes sin in His justice. It isn’t impossible for there to not be ten righteous people in the city; there aren’t ten righteous people on Earth without God’s mercy. It isn’t impossible for God to turn someone into salt; God can do whatever He wants – it’s the advantage of being almighty. This passage interrupts our perception of reality that we think we control and reminds us of our all-powerful God who hates sin.
Today’s B.I.B.L.E. Takeaways:
Blessings from God
Here we see God promise Abraham an impossible blessing, a biological son with Sarah. This reminds us of another miraculous birth when Christ was born of the virgin Mary. God works miracles for His people and blesses us in ways that seem impossible.
Instructions for Us
We can learn to pray for miracles in this text today from God’s promise to Abraham. When doctors may say “it would take a miracle for a recovery,” we continue to pray because our God regularly deals in the impossible. We can also apply this understanding to our lives today, God does take sin and unrighteousness incredibly seriously. We have confidence that we are forgiven by Christ’s sacrifice; however, we still should fear and respect God and His will for our lives.
This passage begins to establish the nation of Israel that God promises will come through Sarah. In addition, the story of Sodom becomes an allusion throughout the remainder of the Scriptures as an example for wickedness and its consequences.
The story of Sodom brings God’s punishment of sin into reality and that can cause us a lot of strife. We frequently prefer to imagine God as a nice old grandpa or a teddy bear that comforts us. We forget that He is all-powerful and cannot abide by imperfection. We forget that Jesus had to become human and die to atone for our sins so that we could be reconciled to God – because otherwise we’d be no better off than Sodom. The other difficult passage here comes in Genesis 19:30-38 because we read this story and think about how wrong that part of the story is on so many levels. And it is. People are messed up, that’s not a new phenomenon.
There isn’t a ton here that you would want to paint on a wall. I think Genesis 18:3-5 is a pretty cool example of dropping everything to offer worship and service to others.
Topics to Pray About:
· Thank God for His incredible mercy.
· Confess to God that you forget aspects of His power.
· Ask God to work miracles in your life.
In His Service,