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Thursday, October 16, 2014

Abraham's faith, an example for us

The "faith chapter" of Hebrews gives Abraham more space than any other character. (His wife, Sarah, is also mentioned there.) Abraham is mentioned in other places in the New Testament, as an example of faith. See here for the results of a search, using the English Standard Version of the Bible.

So how was Abraham faithful? In at least these ways:
He took God as his God.
He left home and culture.
He made a covenant with God. (Gen. 15)

He believed that God would spare Sodom for 10 righteous people.
He was willing to sacrifice Isaac.

He made arrangements for to get a wife for Isaac from his relatives, who were a long way away, and believed that it could be accomplished. (It was.)

Unfortunately, Abraham didn't always live by faith. He had at least these moral lapses:
In Genesis 12:11-20, we are told that he lied to Pharaoh about his wife, because he was afraid he would be killed by Pharaoh, who might want to possess her for himself.
In Genesis 16, he agreed to father Ishmael, by Hagar.
In Genesis 17:15-18, he doubted God’s promise of a child through Sarah.
In Genesis 20, he lied to Abimelech about his wife, for reasons similar to those in Genesis 12.

Abraham wasn't perfect, and didn't always believe God. But, when it counted, he did. What an example!

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