Thursday, August 30, 2007

Father Abraham

When I picture Abraham of the Bible in my mind, I picture a large man with gray hair and beard wearing a long brown robe standing in the desert beside his tent holding a staff in one hand and a lamb in the other. I’m not sure where I get that visual image, but I think I may have watched one too many Bible movies on TV. Nonetheless, I always think of Abraham as a faithful man who stood ready to do whatever God asked of him. I am sure that we all have different images of Abraham, but can you picture him worshipping idols? Joshua 24:2 tells us that Abraham spent a large portion of his life doing just that.

Yes, Abraham was an idol-worshipper, that is, until he was called by Almighty God. God saw Abraham as more than a man who worshipped other Gods. God saw Abraham as covenant-keeper. Regardless of Abraham‘s past, God called him to be His servant. Abraham’s life shows us that no matter what your past, no matter how you have sinned, God can call you to be His servant and use you for His glory. Abraham’s past sins did not exclude Him from becoming a great man of God. Next time satan tells you that your past disqualifies you from ever doing anything important for the Kingdom, remind him of God’s servant Abraham.

God didn’t just call Abraham out of idolatry. He called Abraham out of his home, his land, and away from his extended family. Abraham had to leave everything he held dear in order to follow a God that many didn’t believe even existed. Can’t you just hear all the cousins, aunts, and uncles calling him crazy? I can’t claim to know all the reasons why God told him to leave everything behind, but I believe one reason is that had Abraham stayed where he was he would have been tempted to revert back to idol worship. Like Abraham, when we choose to follow God, we have to leave behind those things that could pull us back into our old lifestyle.

You see, when we choose to follow God, I mean REALLY follow God, our past is irrelevant (forget it) and our future is of the utmost importance. Nothing we leave behind in the world is as valuable as what we gain with God. Just ask Abraham.

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