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The Making of a Man #4 Abraham

“Now the Lord said to Abram, ‘Go forth… so Abram went forth as the Lord had spoken to him.” (Genesis 12:1-4)

“By faith Abraham, when he was called, obeyed….and he went out not knowing where he was going.” (Hebrews 11:8)

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The high school gym was filled with young men from various sports waiting to hear a recruiting pitch from every branch of the armed forces who were each given only 5 minutes. The first up was an Air Force captain who spoke for 18 minutes. Not to be outdone, a Navy lieutenant (embarrassed at their loss to Army) spoke for 19 minutes. A commander from the oft forgotten Coast Guard rambled on for 20 minutes. The frantic organizer explained to the Marine major he had 2 minutes to make his case. The squared jawed, broad shouldered major then stood at attention in absolute silence as he slowly gazed up one row and down another, piercing each soul and penetrating every conscience with his steely eyes. After an eternal minute his commanding voice boomed, “The Marines are looking for a few good men. I’m not sure I see any. If you think you are one and want us to make you our kind of man, meet me in the cafeteria to sign up!” Five minutes later the cafeteria was packed with eager young boys who wanted to become men! According to God, what makes a ‘man?’

75: Saved Yet Feeble Faith

(Gen 12:1-20; 20:1-18; 26:1-11) God is looking for a certain kind of man… humble enough to BELIEVE courageous enough to OBEY and teachable enough to LEARN in response to His deep love based on His faithful grace. God chose Abram (lit. ‘father of many’; Abraham: ‘father of many nations’) and made him into such a man. He was a 75 year old pagan nomadic Bedouin business-man, whom God would use to advance His redemptive plan of salvation. So let’s look at a couple of Abe’s key seasons with the Lord to see how He chiseled his life for His glory.

  • How did God get Abram’s attention? Has He used any of these on you lately?

  • What chisels did God use to carve, mold and remake Abram more in the image of Christ?

  • What aspects of His character did God especially reveal to Abe? Of what aspects do you need to be reminded or learn for the first time?

  • In what ways can you identify with this account of Abe’s story (experience) as it intersects with yours? God uses flaws men like Abe so that we can identify with them and to encourage us with how His grace can transform such men!

  • How does God use this account of Abram’s life to point you to Jesus?

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How does Abe’s life challenge you to believe God more, obey God courageously and learn more about Him?

85: A Renewed Yet Faltering Faith

(Genesis 15:1-19:38) Now 10 years later at 85 Abram (‘father of many’ False advertising!) still has no children. Both Abe and Sarah are sagging, bagging, nagging and lagging with time running out! But the Lord had much more to teach this old dog about the power of His promises, the faithfulness of His character and the reach of His redemptive plan.

  • How did God yet again get Abram’s attention even after he blows it? Has He used any of these in your life?

  • What positive and negative chisels did God use to carve, mold and remake Abram more in the image of Christ?

  • What aspects of His character did Abe still need to learn? How about you? How does God make Abe’s faith stronger by what he learns about the Father’s character?

  • In what ways does this episode in the life of Abe intersect yours? How can you identify?

  • How does God use this account of Abram’s life to point you to Jesus? Why is Gen 15:6 the absolute foundation to Abram’s salvation and ours? (Gal 3:6-9; Rom 3:28; 4:1-5, 9, 20-25)

TAG TEAM

How does God’s faithfulness in light of our faithlessness encourage you to pursue Him with all your heart?

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@ 120: Obedient and Sacrificial Faith

(Gen 22:1-18) At last Abraham finally had the son, Isaac, whom God had promised (21:5; Matt 1:1-2). But the Lord was not yet done growing Abraham’s faith as it takes a life time (Gen 25:7-8)! Just as the muscles of our body must be constantly tested with weights or endurance in order to grow strong, so God continued to mature Abraham’s faith. There was yet another test to see who Abraham loved more….God or his son, Isaac. In the same way the Father tests us often to see if we want Him or just want His blessings.

  • Where has God most been testing your faith? How did God yet again get Abram’s attention even after he blows it? Has He used any of these in your life?

  • What chisels did God use in this passage? What does Hebrews 11:17-19 teach about the depth of Abraham’s faith after the Lord graciously chiseled on his heart for decades? What does Romans 4:18-23 teach about Abe’s growing faith and yours?

  • ‘Firsts’ are important to God! The following words are first mentioned in this passage of the Bible: TESTED (1), LOVE (2), WORSHIP (5), PROVIDE (8), NOT WITHHELD (12), OBEDIENCE (18). Are these words first in your life? Why are they so important as God makes you into His man?

In what ways does this episode in the life of Abe intersect yours? How can you identify?

(vs 2) Recall also that Abraham sacrificed his only son on Mt. Moriah (Jerusalem is built there today) which is first mentioned here. Why is this significant? How does God use this account of Abram’s life to point you to Jesus? Where do you see God’s amazing grace?

(vs 1) What was Abe’s short, yet powerful prayer of availability in response to God testing his faith? How can you make this prayer your first response when being tested?

(vs 5) Did Abraham obey God because of a list, or the Law or in response to His love? Was he obeying out of duty or delight? What about you?

How did Abe demonstrate before the Lord...

  • IMMEDIATE obedience [2-3]

  • DETERMINED obedience [2+4]

  • CONFIDENT obedience [5]

  • PEACEFUL obedience [8]

  • SACRIFICIAL obedience [10-12]

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What has God asked you to do or not do in response to His love?

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