This week’s blog will be in two parts. This past Tuesday’s session of Jeff Cavins’ “A Quick Journey Through the Bible” was a great lesson in the value of trusting God’s plans for us. We learned about God’s promises to Abraham in Genesis 12 and Genesis 15, His testing of Abraham in Genesis 22, and the deceit of Jacob in stealing the blessing of Isaac from his brother Esau in Genesis 27. Today I will focus on what I learned from the story of Abraham.
In Genesis 12:2-3 God makes Abraham a very bold promise. He says:
I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you;
I will make your name great so that you will be a blessing.
I will bless those who bless you and curse those who curse you.
All the communities of the earth shall find blessing in you.
Abraham believes in this promise and does as God instructs him… for about 3 chapters! In Genesis 15 Abraham begins to have his doubts about God being able to make of him a great nation. His doubts are understandable. He’s seventy-five years old and has no kids! How can he start a nation? God reassures him in Genesis 15:5 by taking Abraham outside and having him look up at the sky. God then says to him,
Look up at the sky and count the stars if you can. Just so, shall your descendants be.
When we read this we imagine Abraham looking into the night sky and seeing thousands of stars, more than he can count! By seeing so many stars he realizes the extent of God’s plan for him and his descendants, right? Not quite. A mere seven verses later in Genesis 15:12 we read: As the sun was about to set… It was daytime when God told Abraham to look at the sky and count the stars. Just as he had no descendants, there were no stars in the sky. (For literary purposes we won’t count the sun.) God wasn’t literally showing Abraham the number of descendants he would bear. He was making the analogy that Abraham’s children were as certain to appear as the stars would in their due time.
May we all strive to trust in God as completely as Abraham did and remember that even Abraham had his moments of doubt that were alleviated by prayer.
Tomorrow: The folly of distrust.
Have a blessed day!