ABRAHAM, FRIEND OF GOD(Pt. 4)

“And the LORD said, ‘Shall I hide from Abraham what I am doing, since Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him. For I have known him, in order that he may command his children and his household after him, that they keep the way of the LORD, to do righteousness and justice, that the LORD may bring to Abraham what he has spoken to him'”(Genesis 18:17-18 NKJV).

THE PROPHET, ABRAHAM

Abraham moved God as his friend not only because of his faith and obedience to follow Him, not knowing where he was going, but also by his prayers. If the Law of first mention in the Bible applies, then Abraham is the first man called by God “a prophet who will pray for you and you will live”(Genesis 20:7a). Abraham’s prayers brought healing and life to king Abimilech’s household.   Now his prayers will be the means by which Lot (and any other ” righteous” trapped in Sodom) is delivered.

Prayer is an identifying mark of those God counts His friends. God loves to share inside information with friends. Not merely because they can keep a secret, but because they will avail themselves of the privilege of approaching His throne of grace and mercy to shape the course of human History. Prayer is one of the most awesome weapons in the believer’s arsenal, and yet the least used to defeat the plans of the enemies of God. Abraham, armed with the knowledge of Sodom and Gomorrah’s pending destruction, begins to entreat and petition God. “Then the men turned away from there and went toward Sodom, but Abraham still stood before the LORD. And Abraham came near and said, “Would You also destroy the righteous with the wicked?… Far be it from You to do such a thing as this, to slay the righteous with the wicked, so that the righteous should be as the wicked; far be it from You! Shall not the Judge of all the earth do what is right?”(Genesis 18:22-23,25 NKJV).

Abraham’s confidence and faith was based on the friendship he’d developed and the knowledge of the unchanging character of the LORD God.  God is both a Just God but also Merciful to those whose hearts are towards Him. When you know what the character of God is like, you are very bold to approach His throne. His throne is not only one of judgment, but at His throne “Mercy and truth…have kissed each other”(Ps. 85:10).

ABRAHAM, THE FATHER OF MANY NATIONS

God had so placed the seed of His heart and life in Abraham, which he, like His heavenly Father, could think and act like Him. Already the Nations had been scattered upon the face of the earth (See Genesis 11), but the LORD God was not willing to give them up. He had found a man in Abraham who would share His burden for a world groping it’s way toward eternity, who would participate in His plan of Redemption. “In thy seed shall all the Nations of the earth be blessed”(Genesis 12:2-3).

The writer to the Hebrew believers explains the faith of Abraham, ’’Therefore from one man, and him as good as dead, were born as many as the stars of the sky in multitude–innumerable as the sand which is by the seashore”(Hebrews 11:12 NKJV).  Is this not the real and critical issue above all else in the daily tension in the Middle East?  God,from the beginning, has wanted a people for Himself in His “forever family” for all eternity?  John is given such a view from heaven, “And when He had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each having a harp, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints, and they sang a new song, saying, ‘You are worthy to take the scroll, and to open it’s seal; for You were slain, and have redeemed us to God by Your blood, out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation”(Rev. 5:8-9 NKJV).

THE BANQUETING TABLE

Abraham’s friendship was not dependent on what he could do for God, but what he believed God would do both for him and in him. And so it is true for all who reach out to the God of Abraham today, by faith they are brought into Abraham’s bosom and declared his children. “Just as Abraham ‘believed God, it was counted to him as righteousness’. Therefore know that only those who are of faith are the sons of Abraham. And the scriptures foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel to Abraham beforehand, saying, ‘In you shall all the nations be blessed’. So then those who are of faith are blessed with believing Abraham”(Galatians 3:6-9 NKJV).

One day those who have believed will be privileged  to sit and feast with Abraham,as Jesus foretold.  “And I say to you that many will come from east and west, and sit down with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven”(Matthew 8:11 NKJV).  This banquet celebration will be one that beats any banquet ever known on earth.

What a day of rejoicing that will be!

Copyright(c) 2011, Walter Fletcher Jr., All rights are reserved.  This article may be copied free of charge provided that it is not altered in any way from its original content.  Send any correspondence to:Walterfletcherjr@gmail.com

Advertisements

%d bloggers like this: