Abraham lived his entire life for the kingdom of God.
Abraham is the most significant human so far. The narrator devoted more space to Abraham than to Adam, Cain, Lamech, Seth, Enoch, Noah, and Shem combined. Why was Abraham so important? His significance was his contribution to the kingdom of God. Continue reading “Abraham’s life: a summary (Genesis 12–25)”
How can we talk about the kingdom of God when everything has gone wrong?
God reigns? What does that mean? Does it mean I’m a conqueror who can defeat any enemy and no evil can touch me?
This morning I woke to news that cut deep into my being. Someone I’d met briefly, a servant of King Jesus from our own city here in Perth, had died. Geoff Freind from Morley Salvation Army had gone to Malawi to proclaim “Good News!” He was attacked on the streets, and died in hospital. His wife and four sons are trying to come to terms with the tragedy. Continue reading “How can you say God reigns?”
How would the story of Genesis 24 have felt from Rebekah’s point of view?
Rebekah is caught up in a romantic mystery beyond her wildest dreams. She’s a beautiful girl who has kept herself pure. A wealthy traveller has turned up in her corner of the world. After showing him hospitality, she learns he’s not really a stranger but the servant of a long-lost relative. Apparently Abraham has been very successful, and is seeking a suitable bride for his son who will inherit his good fortune. The guest showers her with expensive jewellery and dresses suitable for a princess. It’s all very sudden and unexpected, but it might be the opportunity of a lifetime. Continue reading “Rebekah’s romance (Genesis 24:22-67)”
In seeking a bride for Isaac, why did Abraham’s servant set this particular test?
The marriage of Isaac and Rebekah must be important: Genesis 24 is the longest chapter in Genesis. The narrator repeats details multiple times. It’s a royal wedding, and we’re introduced to the princess of the kingdom, or at least of the nation that will represent YHWH’s kingdom. Continue reading “A test for the bride (Genesis 24:13-21)”
Abraham’s servant seeks a bride for his master’s son.
Abraham lived his whole life for a unique mission—founding a nation that would be ruled by God. It was actually God’s mission— re-establishing his reign over the nations through the Abrahamic nation. The missio dei (mission of God) is all about rescuing his world from the tyranny of evil, bringing it back under his governance, the kingdom of God. Continue reading “On a mission (Genesis 24:1-12)”
As a nomad, Abraham lived in the land he’s been promised. How did he finally came to own a piece?
Abraham and Sarah gave their entire lives to establishing a new kind of nation. It would be based on radically different political system: ruled by God instead of humans. It’s how the world was intended to be from the start, and the plan was to show the other nations what they were missing—the blessing of divine rule.
In the story of the binding of Isaac, is there a hint of the suffering God’s people would endure in the years ahead?
There are times when life is good, when you feel you have God’s provision, his blessing. There are also times when you don’t receive what you prayed for, or you lose what’s most precious to you. It’s in the difficult moment that you discover the basis of your faith. Do you love God for the benefits he gives? Or do you love God for who he is, holding onto him even when you lose everything else? Continue reading “The binding of Isaac (Genesis 22:3-9)”