Many churches throughout the world use a Bible reading schedule called a "lectionary." It's just a fancy word meaning "selected readings." Posts like this reflect on the readings for an upcoming Sunday or other Church holiday, as found in the three-year lectionary.
In Genesis 15 God came to Abram with a promise, an unbelievable promise. “Your reward will be great.” Abram, childless, equated a divine reward and divine favor with the most normal indicators of wealth and power, children. A childless man would not only have a lonely end to life, he would also not be able to pass on any wealth he received in such a way as to carry on his name and heritage. This was a matter of great importance to Abram. He responded that the only one he had to inherit his property was a man of Damascus, a servant in his household. Abram really didn’t see it as a matter of God’s favor that he could live and work all his life to enrich someone else’s family.
God responded to Abram with a promise he was completely unable to quantify. Look to the stars. Count them, if you are able. Your descendants will outnumber the stars. Particularly in a culture that doesn’t have a lot of light clutter, the visible stars are entirely countless. Go ahead, try to count the stars. You’ll give up pretty soon. They are more abundant than you can really imagine.
God’s promise exceeded even Abram’s imagination. The Lord of all is able to promise the impossible. Then he is able to deliver on his promises, though we don’t see that happen in this particular passage of the Bible. We read later that God blessed all nations through the offspring of Abram.
The greatest point of our reading from Genesis comes in verse six. Abram believed God. God considered that belief as righteousness for Abram. God’s gracious promises are received when His people believe they are true. God’s promises are effective in you when you realize they are promises made for you. The God of all promise has given His word. We do not grasp it by our works any more than Abram received the promise because he already had children. We grasp God’s promises by faith and find out later just how sure and certain the promises were.
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