Monday, September 14, 2009

Father Abraham - Hebrews 11 part 4

"By faith Abraham, when he was called,
obeyed by going out to a place which he was
to receive for an inheritance;
and he went out, not knowing where he was going.
By faith he lived as an alien in the land of promise,
as in a foreign land, dwelling in tents with Isaac and Jacob,
fellow heirs of the same promise;
for he was looking for the city which has foundations,
whose architect and builder is God."
(vs 8-10)

Abel worshipped. Enoch walked. Noah worked. Abraham went! Faith has feet attached to it.

At the onset we see that "the ground of Abraham's faith was the call and the promise of God." Abraham when he was called, obeyed.... God called and Abraham up and went. He packed up everything, left everyone, and headed out not even knowing where he was going. That's faith!

Think about it - Abraham left his father, family and friends. He left the only place he'd ever known. He left the only gods he'd ever worshipped. He turned from them - to HIM! Here is a picture of faith and repentance. He believed God and he went with God.

"The call of God upon Abraham was an effectual call. It was an effectual call by which he was convereted from the idolatry of his father's house. God calls us not only to leave sin but to leave sinful company..... Abraham went out, not knowing whither he went. He put himself in the hand of God, to send him whithersoever He pleased. All that are effectually called resign up their own will and wisdom to the will and wisdom of God. Though they know not always their way, yet they know their guide!"

This is authentic, genuine faith - trusting God though we see not where He leads us. Father Abraham teaches us much. He teaches us to love the Lord our God more than anyone or anything this world has to offer. (Do note, however, that God - while having him leave his father and mother, friends and extended family - had him bring his wife and his children along. Abraham had covenant responsibilities to do if he was to receive the covenant promises.)

Abraham lived as an alien in the land of promise. He didn't have a mansion or a palace - he didn't even have an adobe!! He had a tent. Ultimately the city he was headed for was "the city which has foundations, whose architect and builder is God."

Abraham would never tangibly take hold of the earthly part of the promise - though his descendants would. Hebrews 11:13 tells us that he "died in faith, without receiving the promises, but having seen them and having welcomed them from a distance." While on the earth, Abraham's happiness lay "more in the promise than in the actual enjoyment and possession of it." Though he held it not, the eyes of faith granted him strong and clear vision and in mercy he saw from a distance that which he would take hold of in heaven. He walked by faith and has now eternally taken hold of that heavenly city which is our ultimate inheritance - the full consummation of the promise.

Abraham believed. Abraham went. Abraham arrived - by grace through faith - at the blessed city that he so longed for.Ultimately, he was desiring a better country than Canaan. May we do so as well.

In His glorious grace,

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