Three global religions consider Abraham as the father of their faith. Because of a call from God, he lived a life at odds with his family, society, and culture. Let’s learn about it in Genesis 11:27-12:9.
Genesis 1-11 described human’s spiritual decay. But one ray of hope, a single family, still passed on the knowledge of God: the family of Seth (Genesis 4:25), from whom came Noah and Terah, the father of Abraham. At that time, the culture was polytheistic; even Terah worshiped other gods (Joshua 24:2). Fortunately, his son Abraham followed God. But Abraham’s wife, Sarai, was barren. So, this ray was flickering out, spiritually and physically.
Then God called Abraham. It was a call of grace because Abraham didn’t deserve the call. Abraham wasn’t qualified. The call changed him.
The call was radical. God told Abraham to leave his country, his people, and his father’s household and go “to the land I will show you” (12:1). Note that at that time, there was no Google map. By faith, Abraham went, not knowing where (Hebrews 11:8).
God promised Abraham that he would be a great nation, and all peoples on earth would be blessed through him. But Abraham never witnessed this.
For his entire life, Abraham lived between God’s promises and the reality. He might have been more comfortable just staying back in his father’s land, but instead he listened to God.
Over thousands of years, all the promises gradually are coming true. Like Abraham, we follow God by faith. Our life is between God’s promise and the reality. We may be more comfortable just living our old life. But all of God’s promises eventually will come true.
God promised that through Christ (who left His Father’s house, came on earth to suffer and die for us), we can be welcomed back to the Father’s house, with all the glory and blessing.
God’s call does not fit into our agenda. God’s call probably challenges major aspects of our lives. God’s call probably will take us out of our comfort zone. But trusting God’s call provides real security and gives us entirely new lives with radical new purposes.
Trusting God will bring us to the ultimate promised-land.
Summarized from a Tim Keller sermon:
创世纪1-11描述了人类的属灵衰退。但如一线微光的希望，有一个家庭仍然传递着对上帝的认识，这就是塞特的家族. 创世纪4:25。 诺亚和特拉便是从它而来。 特拉是亚伯拉罕的父亲。那时的文化是多神教，甚至连特拉都崇拜其它的神灵. 约书亚记 24：2。所幸的是他的儿子亚伯拉罕跟随上帝。但亚伯拉罕的妻子撒莱却不能生育。所以，这束微光在属灵上和肉体上都在渐渐熄灭。
这也是一个根本而彻底的使命。上帝告诉亚伯拉罕离开熟悉的本土、本族和父家，“往我所要指示你的地方去.” 创世纪12：1。 请注意当时还没有谷歌地图。亚伯拉罕凭着信心就去了，虽然不知道要去哪里. 希伯来书11：8。
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