DAY 7 The Separation Of Abraham

We completed the teaching on God’s three demands for Abraham’s separation yesterday. (1) Get thee from they country (2) Get thee…from thy kindred (3) Get thee…from thy father’s house, unto a country that I will show thee. We want to address the purpose of these demands today.

TODAY‘S SUBJECT: The Purpose of Abraham’s Separation

It may seem to some readers that the Bible contains multiple plans of God of which some we can name while others are obscure. The fact is there is just ONE master plan of God revealed throughout the Bible. In his letter to the Ephesians Paul explained that the church could now have the manifold wisdom of God “according to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus jour Lord”

God really has just one eternal purpose which is the preeminence and exaltation of His son, Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is Lord forever over everything and everyone. He is eternal life and eternal death. Jesus Christ is the one eternal purpose of God. Everything revolves around Jesus Christ.

Our text, Genesis 12:1-3, tells the role that God had for Abraham in his eternal plan. Both God and Abraham had roles to play in God’s plan for Abraham. First, God communicated His demands to Abraham. Second, Abraham had to obey those demands before God could perform His plan as outlined in Verses 2-3.

Like Abraham, all Christians have a role in God’s eternal plan. We as Christians must determine what role God would have us play. Then we must separate ourselves unto God by obeying what God calls us to do. We can be sure of one thing. If we fail to perform our God-given role in His eternal plan we will forfeit blessings and rewards that were meant for us. See I Corinthians 3:12-15

God informed us of His purpose for demanding Abraham to leave his country, family and in particular his father. “And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great: and thou shalt be a blessing: And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee; and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.” Verses 2-3

We know that Abraham separated himself unto God in obeying His demands. See Genesis 12:4-6 We also know that God did form a great nation from the loins of Abraham – the miraculous nation of Israel. Do you realize that the forming of the great nation of Israel was a physical figure of the spiritual nation God is building now – the church?

Peter wrote this to the scattered Jewish Christians. “But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light” I Peter 2:9

Like Israel, the church is part of God’s eternal plan in Christ Jesus. Therefore, every Christian has a role in the eternal plan of God. Therewith comes these two concluding questions: (1) Have you determined your role in God’s church which is part of God’s eternal plan? (2) Have you separated yourself unto God by performing your role in the church the eternal plan of God?

This concludes our sermon “The Separation of Abraham.“ A new sermon will begin tomorrow. Until then may GOD BLESS YOU…

DAY 6 – The Separation of Abraham

Abraham received three demands from God in Genesis 12:1. If Abraham obeyed these demands he would separate himself unto God and His plan. (1) “Get thee from thy country“ (2) “Get thee…from thy kindred” (3) “Get thee…from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will show thee”

I feel that the third demand really has two parts. Last week we worked the first part, “Get thee…from thy father’s house.” Today the second part of demand number three is our task.

PART 2 “Get thee…unto a land that I will show thee” It is my feeling that this demand was the most troublesome for Abraham. Leaving his family and country was test enough but to be asked to go to someplace unnamed must have seemed bewildering.

Did you ever strike out across the country not knowing where you were going or what you were going to do without the possibility of returning home? Would that not be unnerving to say the least? Why did God treat Abraham in this manner? It was a matter of faith. It required strong faith from Abraham because he would probably never see his country or family again.

Abraham did leave home with Terah his father, Sarai his wife and his nephew Lot. They traveled a thousand miles to Haran and remained there a few years until Abraham’s father, Terah, died. Then it was made known to Abraham that Canaan was his destination and he left immediately with Sarai his wife and nephew, Lot, to go to Canaan. So, it took a thousand miles and a few years before Abraham knew where God wanted Him.

Is that not the way it is sometimes with Christians? We get saved but it may be a few years before we are impressed as to what God wants us to do. That may be due to the need to age in years or to mature as Christians. Spiritual maturity comes from learning God’s Word and practicing it. On the other hand God calls some to faith with almost an immediate knowledge as to what they are to do for the Lord.

As I think about Abraham’s lack of knowledge of his destination when he obeyed God in faith I joy in the truth that Christians know their destination as they obey God. When we get saved we know that we have a heavenly home waiting for us. As Abraham was in the Promised Land we are pilgrims and strangers on earth as we walk by faith. See I Peter 2:11

Like Abraham who left his family behind in order to go to the promised land of Canaan, we too will perhaps leave family behind when we head out for heaven but as God did for Abraham he will do for us. God gave Abraham a new family in the Promised Land. Christians will also meet a wonderful new family in heaven and dwell with them forever. PRAISE GOD!

We are finished with God’s demands to Abraham for his separation unto God. (1) Get thee from thy country (2) Get thee…from thy kindred (3) Get thee…from thy father’s house, and unto a land that I will show thee

The purpose for the separation of Abraham will be discussed tomorrow. Until then may GOD BLESS YOU

DAY 5 – The Separation Of Abraham

We continue our study of God’s demands which He gave to Abraham in Genesis 12:1.  Thus far we have looked at the first two demands:  (1) Get thee from thy country and (2) Get thee…from thy kindred.  Demand number three is our subject today.

     DEMAND 3:  “Get thee…from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will show you.”   I see this as a two part command.

PART 1     “Get thee…from thy father’s house” 

     Why did God require Abraham to leave his father’s house?  I theorize this could have been God’s way of eliminating conflict of authority for Abraham.  In those days paternal authority was not to be dismissed or contended.  The family was ruled, provided for and protected by the father.  It was his right and responsibility.  Once separated from his father Abraham would not be subject to his father’s authority.

     God had a plan for Abraham which excluded his ungodly family, even his father.  Knowing that a family was guided by a father’s authority God moved to remove Abraham from his father’s authority.  By demanding Abraham to move away from his father he would then be subject to God‘s authority alone.  That is the situation God desires for Christians – that they keep themselves subject to God’s authority above all other.

     We live in days where children rebel against and run away from home to escape parental authority.  More often than not this spells ruination of their lives.  No doubt some readers, like me, have experienced this Satanic rebellion of children.  Admittedly the children get much assistance from the godless propaganda machines of the world like public schools.

     Christians also can and do reject or resist God’s authority.  Rebellious Christians become spiritual wrecks until they return to God’s authority.  The Apostle Paul cited two such Christians in I Timothy 1:19-20.  Hymenaeus and Alexander made themselves spiritual shipwrecks, according to Paul, because they strayed from the faith.  They left God’s Word of authority.  I fear there are many Hymenaeuses and Alexanders these days who are not abiding in God’s authority.

     Can we not conclude that a Christian will not be happy or useful to God as long as they spurn God’s authority?  When we reject God’s authority we are left with man’s authority which is a failing substitute.

     God told Abraham “Get thee…from thy father’s house.”  This was done, possibly partly, to free Abraham from conflict of authority.  Following his departure from his father Abraham had another thing to do.  Tomorrow we will go there.  Until tomorrow may GOD BLESS YOU

DAY 4 – The Separation Of Abraham

In Genesis 12:1 God gave Abraham a set of demands which, if Abraham followed, he would separate himself unto God.  Yesterday we dealt with the first demand, “Get thee out of thy country.”  Today we will speak on the second demand.

     SECOND DEMAND:  “Get thee… from they kindred…”

     Why did God require Abraham to move away from his family?  Would that not bring discontent to Abraham?  I think not for these reasons.  (1)  After believing God Abraham’s relationship with his lost family became strained like it does with Christians today.  (2) Abraham had been told by the God of his faith to go elsewhere.  I believe Abraham knew it was all for the best.

     It might have been difficult for Abraham to faithfully serve the Lord while remaining with his lost family.  Abraham’s family worshipped false gods and God wanted a people who would worship Him alone.  A lost family can be a real hindrance to serving God.  Following are some insightful statements spoken by Jesus about family opposition to Christians.

     “For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.  And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household.  He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.”  Matthew 10:35-37

     What did Jesus mean when he said that He came to put family members at odds with one another?  This is not a mystery to Christians.  Jesus was iterating the truth that those who came to faith in Him will of necessity be spiritually divided from the lost members of the family.  This will cause friction in the family.  I have experienced it and no doubt you have.

     Jesus took the divided family situation further by saying “a man’s foes shall be they of his own household.”  A foe is one who hatefully opposes you.  A lost family member is not always a foe but Jesus inferred that foes can and will arise within a believer’s own family.  Jesus knew well the truth of that assertion.  Judas Iscariot was a real foe to Jesus and betrayed Him to those who crucified Him.  See Psalm 41:9

     Jesus’ last statement in Matthew 10:37 could easily be misconstrued if not interpreted properly.  It almost sounds like we are not to love our father, mother or other family members.  That is not so.  The point Jesus is making is a Christian is not to permit family members to interfere or prevent them from following and serving Jesus Christ.  If Jesus is not first in a Christian’s life he/she is not worthy of Him, so said Jesus.

Yes, God demanded Abraham to “Get thee…from thy kindred (family).”  I think many Christians have failed to follow and serve Jesus Christ as they should have because they failed to separate from their family.

    Next time we will investigate God’s third demand for Abraham which, if he followed, would separate himself unto God.  Until then may GOD BLESS YOU

DAY 3 – The Separation Of Abraham

Last week it was discussed how God called Abraham to faith and upon Abraham’s faith God separated him unto Himself.  That same process occurs with Christians today.  God calls us to faith by the Holy Spirit and His Word.  At the moment we come to faith God separates us from the world to Himself as He did Abraham.  This is all of God’s grace.

     It was noted in the introduction (Day 1) that the act of separation required two: God and the believer or Christian.  We have seen God’s part in Abraham’s separation now we will learn of the separation that Abraham performed.  In Genesis 12:1 God issued a set of demands to Abraham which, if Abraham followed, he would separate himself unto God.

     FIRST DEMAND:  “Get thee out of thy country…”  Abraham lived in the city of Ur on the Euphrates River in the land of the Chaldees in Mesopotamia.  The present day location of Ur would be in the Southeastern area of Iraq.

     Why would God direct Abraham to leave his country?  Well, I think one reason could have been the population was heathen – they worshipped false gods.  One reference source said the moon god was the chief god of Abraham’s city of Ur.

     Secondly, we can say that God had a better country waiting for Abraham.  The Bible tells us that Canaan was fat with good provisions.  Do you recall Moses sending the twelve spies into Canaan to assess the land?  They found abundant fruit never before seen.

     “And they came unto the brook of Eshcol, and cut down from thence a branch with one cluster of grapes, and they bare it between two upon a staff; and they brought of the pomegranates, and of the figs.”  Numbers 13:23

     Many times throughout the O.T. Canaan was described as a land “flowing with milk and honey.”  The first such mention is Exodus 3:8.  Plus there was abundant grazing land for cattle to produce the food staple milk.  Then there was the sweet blessing of a plentiful number of bees which produce the much desired honey.

     Honey was a scarce food in the desert areas but Canaan had much honey due to the abundance of bees.  Honey was a symbol of pleasant things.  The Psalmist described God’s judgments as “sweeter also than honey and honeycomb.”  Psalm 19:9-10

     Yes, God had a better country waiting for Abraham.  More importantly God had a miraculous plan for Abraham in that better country.  We will learn more about that as we progress.

     What we should glean from Genesis 12:1 is that God gave Abraham a set of demands for separation.  The first demand was “…get thee out of thy country…”  God’s second demand to Abraham will be our subject tomorrow.  Until then may GOD BLESS

DAY 2 – The Separation Of Abraham

Yesterday we introduced Abraham as the subject person of this sermon. Today we open with this truth: 

                  God First Separated Abraham unto Himself

     I thank perhaps Christians as a whole do not fully recognize nor appreciate the faith of Abraham.  It is easy to think that the faith of the Old Testament believers somehow is dramatically different than that of Christians.  Should we believe that Christians have more faith than Moses, Joseph, King David, Daniel, Isaiah, etc. etc. etc.?  I think not.

     Let us focus on the call of Abraham and his faith in Christ.  First, the Bible tells of God’s visits with Abraham.  While being interrogated by the Jewish Council Stephen said this to the high priest: “Men, brethren, and fathers, hearken; The God of glory appeared unto our father Abraham, when he was in Mesopotamia, before he dwelt in Charan”  We aren’t told in what manner God visited Abraham but is surely could have been a personal visit.

     Then there is the famous story of the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah in Genesis Chapters 18-19.  There can be no doubt that one of the personages who visited Abraham at that time was God.  Did not Abraham have a greater personal experience with God than perhaps most Christians today?  I think so.   

     Here is a most telling verse of the faith of Abraham.  In his letter to the Galatians Paul wrote this of Abraham faith: “And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed.”

     The gospel that Abraham heard had to have been the gospel of Christ because it is only through the crucified and risen Christ that all nations are blessed.  That Abraham knew of the coming Christ and His reconciliatory work is evidenced by the words of Jesus Christ in a rebuke of the testy Jews.

“Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad.”  John 8:56 

     No doubt is possible concerning the true faith of Abraham.  Neither is any doubt allowed about Abraham’s place in heaven.  Let us read what Jesus said about that.  “And I say unto you, that many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven.”  Matthew 8:11 Jesus pictured a time when Gentiles from the entire world will assemble with Abraham and his faithful brethren in heaven.  What a time of fellowship that will be!

     We will close this section “God First Separated Abraham unto Himself” with these three Biblical accolades validating Abraham’s faith.

1. (Isaiah 41:8) God referred to Abraham as His friend.

2. (Romans 4:11) Paul sets Abraham as the “father of all believers.”

3. Galatians 3:7) Christians are the spiritual children of Abraham.

The Separation Of Abraham

     What follows is a written sermon from a series of sermons I have prepared for an evangelistic ministry.  My hope is that the readers enjoy it.  You may wish to read the text before we begin.  Genesis 12:1-5

     NOTE: Our text, Genesis 12:1-5, is NOT an account of Abraham’s conversion to a believer.  The text contains God’s commandments to Abraham and his submission to them.  God must have previously called Abraham to salvation before commanding him to leave home or at the time of His commanding Abraham.

I N T R O D U C T I O N

     I will begin with these three acclamations.  1. If there is one term that defines the position of a Christian it is “separated.”  2.  If there is one thing that faith demands of Christians it is “separation.”  3.  If there is one thing the world needs more of it is “separated Christians.”

     For the purpose of this sermon separation means: the pursuit to remain true to the Christian faith by separating one’s self from sin and worldliness unto God.  This should be the intent of every Christian because that is what the lost world needs to see – separated Christians.  Lost people are affected little by non-separated Christians.

     The Bible character who is our example of Christian separation is the father of the Jews – Abraham.  Whoa, you say.  Abraham was not a N.T. Christian.  No he was not but if he were alive today he undoubtedly would be an exemplary Christian.  Regardless, the spiritual desire for Christian separation was perfectly demonstrated by Abraham as we will learn.

     This sermon will document that Abraham was a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ.  He was aware of the coming crucifixion of the Messiah.  The major difference between Abraham and Christians is that Abraham looked to the future crucified Christ while we look in the past to the crucified Christ.

     TRUTH:  Separation involves the works of two: God and the believer or Christian.  This sermon on Abraham’s separation will expose two important points:  1. God first separated Abraham to Himself.  2. Abraham separated himself unto God.

     Tomorrow we will investigate God’s separation of Abraham.  Until then may GOD BLESS YOU