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Devotionals

The True Blessing of Abraham

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828ministries.com H3'ed 4/2/12
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Then the angel of the Lord called again to Abraham from heaven. "This is what the Lord says: Because you have obeyed me and have not withheld even your son, your only son, I swear by my own name that I will certainly bless you. I will multiply your descendants beyond number, like the stars in the sky and the sand on the seashore. Your descendants will conquer the cities of their enemies. And through your descendants all the nations of the earth will be blessed--all because you have obeyed me." -- Genesis 22: 15-18 (NLT) 

 

It has become in vogue in Christianity to pursue blessings. We hear it preached in contortions of the Gospel designed to make men rich and turn Christ into an ATM. We see it on all the "church" channels as we are taught that sowing seed (money) will produce a harvest (more money) because some modern day charlatan has figured our how to twist Scripture to fit their schemes. They will shout out to you that God has made you the head and not the tail! On top and not beneath! A lender and not a borrower! That all sounds fantastic but of course it is completely ignorant of context. Those snippets are taken from a section of Deuteronomy 28 where God is speaking of the blessings for obeying the law. Here are the actual full verses:

"If you obey the commands of the Lord your God and walk in his ways, the Lord will establish you as his holy people as he swore he would do. Then all the nations of the world will see that you are a people claimed by the Lord , and they will stand in awe of you. "The Lord will give you prosperity in the land he swore to your ancestors to give you, blessing you with many children, numerous livestock, and abundant crops. The Lord will send rain at the proper time from his rich treasury in the heavens and will bless all the work you do. You will lend to many nations, but you will never need to borrow from them. If you listen to these commands of the Lord your God that I am giving you today, and if you carefully obey them, the Lord will make you the head and not the tail, and you will always be on top and never at the bottom. You must not turn away from any of the commands I am giving you today, nor follow after other gods and worship them. -- Deuteronomy 28: 9-14 (NLT)

Looks like there were a couple of conditions left out of those blessings! IF you obey the commands of God! IF you walk in ALL of His ways! IF you listen to all of His commands! IF you do not follow after other Gods and worship them! And what were the commands God is referring to here? The Mosaic Law, which contained over 600 different rules for Israel to follow. And how successful were they at keeping the law? How many people were able to? NONE. No one could keep the law, which was why God had to send Jesus to earth to die for our sins! And while the first 15 verses of the 28 th chapter of Deuteronomy does indeed spell out the blessings for obedience to God's laws, the remaining 54 verses deal with the curses for disobedience!     And they are not as user friendly as the blessings. Imagine trying to sell financial prosperity on these verses:

"The Lord will afflict you with the boils of Egypt and with tumors, scurvy, and the itch, from which you cannot be cured. The Lord will strike you with madness, blindness, and panic. You will grope around in broad daylight like a blind person groping in the darkness, but you will not find your way. You will be oppressed and robbed continually, and no one will come to save you. -- Deuteronomy 28: 27-29 (NLT)

That wouldn't sell well at a Praise-athon! The real damage of the bless me theology is that it skews our view of everything God has already done for us! That is what blessings are! Are you healthy? Is your marriage prospering? Do you know where your kids are? Do you have a Bible believing church and a nurturing Pastor? These are blessings. But we overlook them seeking for what we think we are somehow lacking or searching for what the devil shows us we don't yet possess. And the greatest of all the blessings is the true blessing of Abraham!

 

Despite what the song might falsely teach us the actual blessing of Abraham is the salvation we almost consciously dismiss every day. The fact that our name is written in the Lamb's Book of Life. The fact that we enjoy eternal life right now and that through Jesus Christ death no longer holds any power over us! Here is the blessing of Abraham in Scripture:

Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us (for it is written, "Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree" ), that the blessing of Abraham might come upon the Gentiles in Christ Jesus, that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith. Brethren, I speak in the manner of men: Though it is only a man's covenant, yet if it is confirmed, no one annuls or adds to it. Now to Abraham and his Seed were the promises made. He does not say, "And to seeds," as of many, but as of one, "And to your Seed," who is Christ. And this I say, that the law, which was four hundred and thirty years later, cannot annul the covenant that was confirmed before by God in Christ, that it should make the promise of no effect. For if the inheritance is of the law, it is no longer of promise; but God gave it to Abraham by promise. -- Galatians 3: 13-18 (NKJV)

Our inheritance is already obtained beloved. It is the salvation through Christ. Passed down from Abraham to Isaac to Jacob, who would then become Israel. From Israel to the Gentiles, who then would become the church. You don't have to chase the blessing of Abraham because if you are saved you already inherited it when you gave your life to Christ. Instead of looking at the blessing however, let's look at two defining moments in the life of Abraham which highlight what we should be chasing as believers. For the first, we need to look at the inception of the blessing:

 

The Lord had said to Abram, "Leave your native country, your relatives, and your father's family, and go to the land that I will show you. I will make you into a great nation. I will bless you and make you famous, and you will be a blessing to others. I will bless those who bless you and curse those who treat you with contempt. All the families on earth will be blessed through you." -- Genesis 12: 1-3 (NLT)

 

All families on earth are blessed through Abraham because salvation came through his lineage in the form of Jesus Christ. This was God's redemptive plan for humanity. But the part that is often overlooked is what Abraham had to do. He had to display a blind obedience to God. Verse one here says that God essentially told Abraham to pick up and leave everything he knew behind and go to a foreign land. No details are provided to him whatsoever. Just pick up and leave your comfort zone, your extended family, your lifelong friends, and everything familiar. No reason is provided either.

 

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