Presentation on theme: "Key People in the Old Testament A B R A H A M. Abraham: a key person in the Old Testament Why? o Father of the Jewish race?YES o Man of faith?YES o Taught."— Presentation transcript:
Abraham: a key person in the Old Testament Why? o Father of the Jewish race?YES o Man of faith?YES o Taught his children to fear the true God?YES o Called the “friend of God”?YES o Key person in the purpose of God?YES What Else? o Father of the faithful in scripture o Recipient of the promises of God Promised that he would be “the heir of the world”! Promised that “in you all nations will be blessed”!
Abraham: Father of the Jewish Race Actually Abraham fathered a number of nations:
Why, then, are the Jews so important? Turn to Genesis 17:15-21 What covenant? Verses 1-8
Abraham: Man of Faith Joshua 24:2 tells us that Abraham’s father, Terah, was a worshiper of false gods Abraham himself was apparently converted by a direct message from God (there were no bibles then) Genesis 12:1-4 Abraham’s response was one of belief. He left the civilised cities of Ur and Haran behind and began a nomadic journey of faith to the promised land (turn over to webpage)
Abraham: recipient of the Promises of God God responded to Abraham’s action of faith in leaving everything in response to His promise: Genesis 12:7
Abraham: Man of Faith We could say that the rest of Abraham’s life was a journey of faith, a faith that grew stronger as the challenges became greater. Abraham & his nephew Lot, who went with him, became rich in cattle and goods, but did not yet inherit any land & Abraham’s wife, Sarah, was infertile. Genesis 13:7-13 Lot had chosen a fertile land, with easy pasturage - forgetting the sinful men who lived there. He ended up inside the city of Sodom and was nearly destroyed with it when the judgements of God fell! His wife & daughters were corrupted morally. There’s a lesson here... Abraham, by contrast, kept himself separate from wicked men, consequently his faith was rewarded… Genesis 13: 14-17
Abraham Taught his children to fear God Gen 18:16-19 And the men rose up from thence, and looked toward Sodom: and Abraham went with them to bring them on the way. 17 And the Lord said, Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do; 18 Seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him? 19 For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment; that the Lord may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him. KJV Again, we see the contrast with Lot. If Abraham had not taught his children the way of faith, the promises of God would not have been fulfilled.
Abraham: Man of Faith As God had promised, despite his advanced age of 100 years and Sarah’s of 90 (well beyond natural child bearing), Isaac, the son of promise was born Genesis 21:1-7 But, God had another, perhaps supreme, test for Abraham’s faith Genesis 22:1-12 We might say: ‘well, here was a shocking test of Abraham’s faith!’ But you have to admit that it certainly brought out the absolute trust that he had now developed in God! That faith was again rewarded: Genesis 22:15-18
Abraham: called the Friend of God Here is a New Testament comment upon Abraham’s extraordinary faith James 2:21-23 (ESV) Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered up his son Isaac on the altar? You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was completed by his works; and the Scripture was fulfilled that says, "Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness"—and he was called a friend of God
Abraham was a key Person in the Purpose of God Abraham.. was a remarkable example of faith o He believed everything God told him and he acted upon that faith o He obeyed God implicitly (evidencing his faith in practice), even when God required him to sacrifice his only son, the son of promise! became the father of the Jewish race, through whom the purpose of God developed and true faith was retained (at least by some members of that race) developed a godly race by maintaining separation from ungodly people and by teaching his children true religion
What Else? The Father of the Faithful in Scripture The Jews of Jesus’ day thought that blood descent from Abraham and keeping the Law of Moses was the route to salvation. John the Baptist told them : “God is able from these stones to raise up children for Abraham.” (Matt.3:9) The Jews had to learn that it was faith in the work of Christ as their Saviour (from the power of sin) that was the route to salvation, not keeping Law. This route to salvation is available to everyone: Jew & Gentile. But what has all this to do with Abraham?
Abraham: Father of the Faithful Turn over, please, to the letter to the Romans, which is an exposition of the Gospel: Romans 3:28-31; 4:1-5,9-12 It’s telling us here that Abraham is the spiritual father of everyone who shares his faith not merely the Jews, his blood descendants
Abraham: Recipient of the Promises of God You might think that we have already pretty well covered this one, with our quotations from Genesis, but there is something more…it isn’t just that Abraham was an outstanding example of faith (not based on keeping law), but just as importantly it’s what he believed Romans 4:13
Abraham: Recipient of the Promises of God Abraham was promised that he would be “heir of the world” Abraham was also promised that “in you all nations would be blessed.” For our final reference tonight let’s turn Galations chapter 3. Galations 3:6-9 The point is, those promises that Abraham believed in so wholeheartedly ARE THE ESSENCE OF THE CHRISTIAN GOSPEL! Read verse 16
Abraham: Recipient of the Promises of God Christ is the “seed” (descendant) through whom the promises to Abraham are to come true It is Christ who has made salvation possible for all who believe in him, through his once for all sacrifice for sin. So all nations are to be blessed. It is Christ who will return from heaven to establish a worldwide kingdom, through which Abraham and his fellow believers will become heirs of the world!
Abraham: a key figure in Scripture Finally, tonight: How can you share in the faith of Abraham, those promises (the Gospel) which God made to him? Galations 3:26-29 Through baptism (complete immersion in water) each of us become Abraham’s “seed” and heirs of the promises of God!