Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Ishmael and Hagar are Cast Out

And Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian, which she had born unto Abraham, mocking. Wherefore she said unto Abraham, Cast out this bondwoman and her son: for the son of this bondwoman shall not be heir with my son, even with Isaac.
And the thing was very grievous in Abraham�s sight because of his son. And God said unto Abraham, Let it not be grievous in thy sight because of the lad, and because of thy bondwoman; in all that Sarah hath said unto thee, hearken unto her voice; for in Isaac shall thy seed be called. And also of the son of the bondwoman will I make a nation, because he is thy seed. Genesis 21:9-13

Steps 3, 4, 5, 12

Sarah sees Ishmael mocking her son Isaac. She tells Abraham that Hagar and her son Ishmael have to be cast out of the home to protect Isaac. Abraham goes into stress for his love for his son, and whatever feelings he has for Hagar. Abraham talks to God about it and God tells him to follow Sarah’s advice. God promises to care for Isaac and for Ishmael. Both of these sons will become great nations – Isaac will produce Israel and Ishmael will produce the Arabian nations.

Prayer for Today: God, You know that sometimes You ask things of us that seem impossible to do. To cast out a family member, even though we love them, is next to impossible to do. Yet You told Abraham to do it, and if he could do it in faith with You, then so can we. Help us to trust that You have the best interests of all of us in mind and that what You ask You will watch over, even our departed loved ones.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Isaac is Born

And the LORD visited Sarah as he had said, and the LORD did unto Sarah as he had spoken. For Sarah conceived, and bare Abraham a son in his old age, at the set time of which God had spoken to him. And Abraham called the name of his son that was born unto him, whom Sarah bare to him, Isaac. And Abraham circumcised his son Isaac being eight days old, as God had commanded him. And Abraham was an hundred years old, when his son Isaac was born unto him. And Sarah said, God hath made me to laugh, so that all that hear will laugh with me. And she said, Who would have said unto Abraham, that Sarah should have given children suck? for I have born him a son in his old age. Genesis 21:1-7

Steps 3, 11, 12

In fulfillment of God’s promise Sarah is granted a child, even though she is past menopause. Abraham is 100 years old and he is granted the ability to father a child, all in harmony with God’s promise. God sends the child and Sarah names the child Isaac – laughter. God named the child laughter because Abraham and Sarah both laughed at the absurdity of God giving them a child past the time when science said it could be done. None the less God’s word is higher than science.

Prayer for Today: God, help us to believe that what You say You can do, even when science says it can not happen. You have said that You can heal us of our addictive lifestyles and we want to hold on to that promise like Abraham and Sarah did for a baby. Do in us what can not be understood, grant us victory over ourselves. Thank You for Your power and grace.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Abimelech makes Amends to Abraham

And Abimelech took sheep, and oxen, and menservants, and womenservants, and gave them unto Abraham, and restored him Sarah his wife. And Abimelech said, Behold, my land is before thee: dwell where it pleaseth thee. And unto Sarah he said, Behold, I have given thy brother a thousand pieces of silver: behold, he is to thee a covering of the eyes, unto all that are with thee, and with all other: thus she was reproved. So Abraham prayed unto God: and God healed Abimelech, and his wife, and his maidservants; and they bare children. For the LORD had fast closed up all the wombs of the house of Abimelech, because of Sarah Abraham’s wife.
Genesis 20:14-18

Steps 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 ,9 ,10 ,11 ,12

After being confronted by God, Abimelech is willing to let Abraham go free along with his wife Sarah. Abimelech is also willing to make amends to Abraham and Sarah. As a result of this gesture Abraham is willing to pray for Abimelech and his family is restored and God allows them to have children again. God wants all to know that He sees Abraham in a special manner and all who come in contact with Abraham need to treat him with the utmost respect, for he was a prophet for God.

Prayer for Today: God help us to listen to You and be willing to stand firm for You in all our daily activities. Help us to be willing to recognize where we have done wrong and be willing to change as You reveal things to us. Help us not to take advantage of others, and be willing to surrender as fast as possible. Thank You again for Your patience with us. Help us to be willing to apologize to others and make things right. Thank You for Your love.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Abraham’s New Trouble

And Abraham journeyed from thence toward the south country, and dwelled between Kadesh and Shur, and sojourned in Gerar. And Abraham said of Sarah his wife, She is my sister: and Abimelech king of Gerar sent, and took Sarah. But God came to Abimelech in a dream by night, and said to him, Behold, thou art but a dead man, for the woman which thou hast taken; for she is a man’s wife. But Abimelech had not come near her: and he said, Lord, wilt thou slay also a righteous nation? Said he not unto me, She is my sister? and she, even she herself said, He is my brother: in the integrity of my heart and innocency of my hands have I done this. And God said unto him in a dream, Yea, I know that thou didst this in the integrity of thy heart; for I also withheld thee from sinning against me: therefore suffered I thee not to touch her. Now therefore restore the man his wife; for he is a prophet, and he shall pray for thee, and thou shalt live: and if thou restore her not, know thou that thou shalt surely die, thou, and all that are thine. Genesis 20:1-7

Steps 4, 5, 10, 11, 12

Abraham traveled south with his family. He arrives at a place called Gerar. He decides that Sarah is so beautiful that he will be killed if the people find out that she is his wife. Technically, and literally, Sarah is his half sister so Abraham tells everyone that she is his sister, thus showing a lack of faith that God would protect him and his family. The king of Gerar, Abimilech, takes Sarah to be his wife. God comes to protect her and Abraham and warns Abimilech that he needs to return to the woman to her husband. God states that He protected Abimilech from the sin of adultery and theft. God identifies Abraham as a prophet and protected of God.

Prayer for Today: God You know how many mistakes we have made by not understanding a spiritual situation. Please help us to know Your will and be willing to change as You guide us. Help us also to learn from Abraham’s mistakes and be willing to trust You in all things. Thank You for Your patience with us, help us to be patient with us as well.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

The Effect of Sodom on Lot’s Family

And Lot went up out of Zoar, and dwelt in the mountain, and his two daughters with him; for he feared to dwell in Zoar: and he dwelt in a cave, he and his two daughters. And the firstborn said unto the younger, Our father is old, and there is not a man in the earth to come in unto us after the manner of all the earth: Come, let us make our father drink wine, and we will lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our father. And they made their father drink wine that night: and the firstborn went in, and lay with her father; and he perceived not when she lay down, nor when she arose. And it came to pass on the morrow, that the firstborn said unto the younger, Behold, I lay yesternight with my father: let us make him drink wine this night also; and go thou in, and lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our father. And they made their father drink wine that night also: and the younger arose, and lay with him; and he perceived not when she lay down, nor when she arose. Thus were both the daughters of Lot with child by their father.
And the firstborn bare a son, and called his name Moab: the same is the father of the Moabites unto this day. And the younger, she also bare a son, and called his name Benammi: the same is the father of the children of Ammon unto this day. Genesis 19:30-38

Steps 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 11

Lot’s family had been so indoctrinated by Sodom that everything they did, even when attempting to be kind and helpful, was contaminated. Lot’s daughters got Lot drunk, slept with him, and were impregnated by their father. These two children were to become nations, and enemies of Israel. The spirit of Sodom lived on through the children of incest. This is one of the many reasons God wants to keep us away from such places as Sodom. He does not want our every thought to be evil continually.

Prayer for Today: Most of us have not done things like Lot’s daughters did. None the less each of us have some pretty ugly history. Please forgive us Father for our behaviors. We accept that Sodom lives in our hearts and minds. We ask that You will cleanse us from every crazy thought, that we might live for You.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Lot’s Wife Looks Back

But his wife looked back from behind him, and she became a pillar of salt. Genesis 19:26

Steps 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 11

Lot’s wife felt love for her children. She also felt love for God. She decided that one look back at Sodom and her family would be ok even though she had been warned not to look back. She felt that love for her family was needed more than love for God. As a result God allowed her to die where her heart was. God made her a pillar of salt. Salt in the Bible is a symbol of judgment. She became a testimony against those who will disobey God. When He warns us He means it.

Prayer for Today: God, You know that we will always come up with an excuse to do what we want to do, even over what You have told us to do. Be merciful and grant us the grace sufficient to put You first in all things. We recognize that You want to do everything possible to protect us, and we pray that we won’t let You down.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

God Warns Lot to Leave

And when the morning arose, then the angels hastened Lot, saying, Arise, take thy wife, and thy two daughters, which are here; lest thou be consumed in the iniquity of the city. And while he lingered, the men laid hold upon his hand, and upon the hand of his wife, and upon the hand of his two daughters; the LORD being merciful unto him: and they brought him forth, and set him without the city.
And it came to pass, when they had brought them forth abroad, that he said, Escape for thy life; look not behind thee, neither stay thou in all the plain; escape to the mountain, lest thou be consumed. Genesis 19:15-17

Steps 1, 2, 3, 11

The angels warn Lot, and his family, to leave and not look back. Genesis 19:22 states that they can not do anything until Lot is safe. Now Lot, and family, has to decide whether they believe the angels enough to make the change necessary in order to live.

Prayer for Today: Help us Father to be willing to make the change. We are used to our lives of addiction and it is hard to see and to change. But with Your help all things are possible. Help us to make the decision and live a life of recovery.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Sodom Will Be Destroyed

And the men said unto Lot, Hast thou here any besides? son in law, and thy sons, and thy daughters, and whatsoever thou hast in the city, bring them out of this place: For we will destroy this place, because the cry of them is waxen great before the face of the LORD; and the LORD hath sent us to destroy it. Genesis 19:12-13

Steps 11, 12

The decision had been made. God sent the angels, they had experienced Sodom, and the final decision had been made, Sodom must be destroyed. The angels tell Lot to find all of his family and get them out of Sodom. Abraham had extracted a promise from God that if there were ten righteous people in Sodom it would not be destroyed. Lot spoke to his daughters and their husbands and they could not see that destruction was coming and they would not leave. Finally only four people left. God’s awareness was validated. It was time, probation had ended, and destruction was waiting for Lot to get out of the way.

Prayer for Today: Again Lord, You know all things and we don’t. Help us to be able to hear Your voice, and when we hear it to be willing to obey You what ever may be the challenges. Help us to get to know You so well that we will trust Your decisions over our feelings. Thank You again for Your mercies.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Sodom’s Response to Grace

But before they lay down, the men of the city, even the men of Sodom, compassed the house round, both old and young, all the people from every quarter: And they called unto Lot, and said unto him, Where are the men which came in to thee this night? bring them out unto us, that we may know them. And Lot went out at the door unto them, and shut the door after him, And said, I pray you, brethren, do not so wickedly. Behold now, I have two daughters which have not known man; let me, I pray you, bring them out unto you, and do ye to them as is good in your eyes: only unto these men do nothing; for therefore came they under the shadow of my roof. And they said, Stand back. And they said again, This one fellow came in to sojourn, and he will needs be a judge: now will we deal worse with thee, than with them. And they pressed sore upon the man, even Lot, and came near to break the door. Genesis 19:4-9

Steps 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 10, 11, 12

Sodom sends it’s best men to find the two visitors. The Sodomites do not know that these men are angels. They simply want to “know them”. To “know someone” Biblically is to be intimate, or sexual with them. The Sodomites wanted to be sexually explicit with the two men. Thus they pronounced sentence upon themselves. Lot attempts to defend the men and offers the Sodomites his two daughters and they refuse. The Sodomites want the men and thus have violated all of the principles of hospitality. God will decide that Sodom is worthy of death.

Prayer for Today: God, we have been inhospitable to others and to You. Today we want to apologize to You and ask for Your forgiveness. Help us to spiritually recognize the events around us and to respond to them in a manner that reveals You. Thank You for Your mercy to us.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Two Angels Check Out Sodom

And there came two angels to Sodom at even; and Lot sat in the gate of Sodom: and Lot seeing them rose up to meet them; and he bowed himself with his face toward the ground; And he said, Behold now, my lords, turn in, I pray you, into your servant’s house, and tarry all night, and wash your feet, and ye shall rise up early, and go on your ways. And they said, Nay; but we will abide in the street all night. And he pressed upon them greatly; and they turned in unto him, and entered into his house; and he made them a feast, and did bake unleavened bread, and they did eat. Genesis 19:1-3

Steps 1,2,3,11,12

Lot welcomed two strange men into his home not knowing that these two men were angels, and he did not know that they had come to pass judgment on Sodom. Lot wanted to be sure that these men did not stay on the street for if the did they would be attacked by the men of Sodom. He did all that he could to help them, protect them, and feed them. By this act Lot sealed his probation and was considered a righteous person by God. Hebrews 13:1-2; II Peter 2:7-8

Prayer for Today: God, for us it is strange for us to do things for other people. Yet You have chosen to help us to reach out to others and to help them. We pray today that You will continue to help us be interested in helping others as we are interested in getting help for ourselves. We need You to help us with our selfishness for it is the root of all of our addictions. Guide and keep us and help us to be like You.

Abraham Intercedes with The Judge of All the Earth for Sodom

And Abraham drew near, and said, Wilt thou also destroy the righteous with the wicked? Peradventure there be fifty righteous within the city: wilt thou also destroy and not spare the place for the fifty righteous that are therein? That be far from thee to do after this manner, to slay the righteous with the wicked: and that the righteous should be as the wicked, that be far from thee: Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right? Genesis 18:23-25

Steps 4, 5, 10, 11, 12

Abraham is inspired to talk to Jesus for He is the Judge of the all the Earth, about God’s judgment of fallen man. Abraham asks if the Judge will destroy a whole city if there were fifty righteous people in Sodom? Abraham asks if God, the Judge of all the Earth, will do right. In the rest of the chapter Abraham keeps asking if God will destroy Sodom if there were ten righteous people in Sodom and God assures Abraham that He would not do it if there were only ten people. Abraham stops interceding because he thinks that he has ten family members in Sodom and thus he has preserved the city. Abraham does not know that there are fewer than ten, but God does. God knows all and is concerned with all. God knows that in the whole city there were not ten righteous people and thus He will destroy it.

Prayer for Today: God, as You know it is scary to face judgement. We pray that when you evaluate us You will show abundant mercy to us. We pray that someone out there is interceding for us. We thank You that Your Word says that You are interceding for us. Hebrews 7:24-25 and Romans 8:26-27. Keep working with us and don’t give up on us. Thank You Lord for Your love.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

God Comes to Investigate Sodom

And the LORD said, Because the cry of Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and because their sin is very grievous; I will go down now, and see whether they have done altogether according to the cry of it, which is come unto me; and if not, I will know. And the men turned their faces from thence, and went toward Sodom: but Abraham stood yet before the LORD. Genesis 18:20-22

Steps 3, 4, 5, 10, 11, 12

God is headed for Sodom to check out all that He has heard about Sodom, and Gomorrah. God being all knowing did not have to come to Earth to check this out, but God chose to reveal Himself to Abraham, and to us, how He handles the issue of judging. He created a situation that Abraham will intercede for the people of Sodom. This will give us some idea of how God handles our cases. God loves us and wants to save us from our sins and our addictions. God allows Abraham to discuss this problem with the Judge of All the Earth. This interaction will turn into an intergalactic court scene.

Prayer for Today: O God in heaven, thank You that You have provided a Lawyer for us and an Intercessor for us. Only You could think of allowing Your Son Jesus to do all of these things for us. We need the best Lawyer in the universe and You have allowed Him to do this work for us. Help us to accept Your plan to rescue us from our addictions and from ourselves.

Friday, March 19, 2010

God Heads for Sodom

And the men rose up from thence, and looked toward Sodom: and Abraham went with them to bring them on the way. And the LORD said, Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do; Seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him? 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. Genesis 18:16-19

Steps 1,2,3,4,5,10,11,12

God heads for Sodom to conduct an Investigative Judgment on their behavior. God decides to tell Abraham, His friend, what He is about to do, and not to hide it. God decides that since Abraham is a faithful family man that he can be entrusted with this special information and since Abraham receives this information it will be good for mankind as well. God wants to share information with us that we may grow in grace and truth and understand how God works.

Prayer for Today: Thank You for entrusting us with information about the difficulty things of life. Help us to read it, understand it, and learn how to apply these things to our lives. We appreciate the opportunity to enter into these difficult things with You. Thank You for trusting us with such things.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Sarah Laughs at the Promise of God

And they said unto him, Where is Sarah thy wife? And he said, Behold, in the tent. And he said, I will certainly return unto thee according to the time of life; and, lo, Sarah thy wife shall have a son. And Sarah heard it in the tent door, which was behind him. Now Abraham and Sarah were old and well stricken in age; and it ceased to be with Sarah after the manner of women. Therefore Sarah laughed within herself, saying, After I am waxed old shall I have pleasure, my lord being old also? And the LORD said unto Abraham, Wherefore did Sarah laugh, saying, Shall I of a surety bear a child, which am old? Is any thing too hard for the LORD? At the time appointed I will return unto thee, according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son. Then Sarah denied, saying, I laughed not; for she was afraid. And he said, Nay; but thou didst laugh. Genesis 18:9-15

Steps 1, 2, 3, 11, 12

God came to talk to Abraham and Sarah and among the things He wanted to tell them is that they would have a baby in their old age, in fact so old that they could not have a baby by natural means. God asked them if there was anything too hard for Him to do and the baby would be a testimony that God can do what nature can not do. Sarah laughed in her heart and God confronted her on her laughter. She denied that she laughed but God knew. God had already said He would name the baby Isaac – laughter. God knows what He is doing and why He is doing something.

Prayer for Today: God, thank You for having all power and being willing to use that power to help us. When You tell us that you can change us and deliver us from our addictions help us to take You at Your word. Help us to look to You and not to our addiction for guidance. Help us to learn the lesson You tried to teach to Abraham and Sarah. Thank You for Your love and patience with us that even when we doubt You, You still grant us gifts of recovery.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

The Promise of Isaac

And God said, Sarah thy wife shall bear thee a son indeed; and thou shalt call his name Isaac: and I will establish my covenant with him for an everlasting covenant, and with his seed after him. And as for Ishmael, I have heard thee: Behold, I have blessed him, and will make him fruitful, and will multiply him exceedingly; twelve princes shall he beget, and I will make him a great nation.
But my covenant will I establish with Isaac, which Sarah shall bear unto thee at this set time in the next year. And he left off talking with him, and God went up from Abraham. Genesis 17:19-22

Steps 3, 11, 12

God Himself promises to give Abraham and Sarah a baby by this set time next year. He promises, and sets a specific time. He also gives the baby a name – Isaac –, which means “laughter”. God wanted to give this name as a reminder that Abraham and Sarah laughed in their hearts when God promised them something that was to wonderful to believe. God also promised to establish His covenant with Isaac, and not Ishmael. When God was finished talking to Abraham He went up from him – he returned to heaven.

Prayer for Today: God, You know that we find Your promises difficult to process. Please be merciful to us for we are slow to understand Your promises, especially when applied to ourselves. Grant us the simplicity to take You at Your word. We want to be healed and we want to grow in grace and truth. Help us to believe You when You tell us it will get done. You will change us and we will act like people in recovery. Thank You for Your love.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Sarai’s Name is Changed to Sarah

And God said unto Abraham, As for Sarai thy wife, thou shalt not call her name Sarai, but Sarah shall her name be. And I will bless her, and give thee a son also of her: yea, I will bless her, and she shall be a mother of nations; kings of people shall be of her. Then Abraham fell upon his face, and laughed, and said in his heart, Shall a child be born unto him that is an hundred years old? and shall Sarah, that is ninety years old, bear? Genesis 17:15-17

Steps 1,2,3,4,5,10,11,12

God changed Sarai’s name to Sarah – Princess, implying a royal personage in a nation. That nation would come from her even though she was 90 years old and had long passed menopause. God promised them a child even though it was impossible for an old couple to have a child on their own. This promise is one of the greatest promises in the Bible. Two old people having a child in their nineties would be a true miracle of God. These two would have to accept this promise by faith for there was no data available to say it was possible other than God said it.

Prayer for Today: God, if You could give this old couple a baby when both of them were too old to have a baby, then You are capable of doing anything You say. We pray today that when You say You can heal us of any problem we want to believe You as well. Help us to have such a relationship with You that we can take You at Your word. We know what happens when we promise to do something – it usually does not get done. But when You promise there is all hope, because of You. Thank You for Your promises.

Monday, March 15, 2010

The Importance of Names to God

Neither shall thy name any more be called Abram, but thy name shall be Abraham; for a father of many nations have I made thee. Genesis 17:5

Steps 4, 5, 10, 11, 12

In the Bible a person’s name is very important to God. He wants to call us by a name that rightly describes us. So when God gave Abraham a son, He changed His name from Abram meaning father of heights, to Abraham – father of nations. Through Ishmael, Abraham would be the father of the many Middle Eastern nations that would come through Ishmael. So God changed Abram’s name to reflect this change in position. This event also happens to Jacob – the supplanter or deceiver, to Israel – a prince of God. Genesis 32:27-28. God also wants to do this for us in our walk with Him. God will give us a new name reflecting our change for our various addictions to that which God has designed for us. Revelation 2:17. Thus we know that God has many wonderful things in store for us including a new name.

Prayer for Today: God, we don’t know what You will name us but whatever it will be we want it. People have called us many names in our history and most of them have not been nice. We thank You for the promise that You can and will change us. We will no longer have to be slaves to our old ways of life. Thank You for also giving us a new name to reflect that change. We want Your will to be done in us, and we want to reflect You in all that we do. Thank You.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

We are Abraham’s Children by Faith

Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham. And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed. So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham…For ye are all children of God by faith in Christ Jesus…And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise. Galatians 3:7-9; 26, 29

Steps 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 11, 12

Anyone who has faith in God is accounted a child of Abraham, and a son of God. Thus we are incorporated into the covenant of Abraham and are considered His children. As a child of Abraham we should also be accepting of Jesus the Christ. As accepting of Christ we become heirs of the promise.

Prayer for Today: God, how do we say thank You, for all of the attention You have shown us. We don’t know how to say thank You, but You already know what goes on in our hearts. Thank You for making us Your children by faith.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Abram’s Name is Changed to Abraham

And Abram fell on his face; and God talked with him, saying, As for me, behold, my covenant is with thee, and thou shalt be a father of many nations. Neither shall thy name any more be called Abram, but thy name shall be Abraham; for a father of many nations have I made thee. And I will make thee exceeding fruitful, and I will make nations of the, and kings shall come out of thee. And I will establish my covenant between Me and thee and thy seed after thee in their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be a God unto thee, and to thy seed after thee. Genesis 17:3-7

Steps 4, 5, 11, 12

God gave Abram a son. Then God promises to be with Abram and make him a father of many nations. As Abraham has been steady with God, God changes his name from Abram – High Father, to Abraham – Father of many nations. God will fulfill His promise to Abraham and though him many nations will be established. God also promises to be our God through Abraham, for we are his descendents by faith.

Prayer for Today: Thank You for bringing us into Abraham’s covenant with You. He was not worthy of this gift and we certainly are not worthy. Thank You for thinking of us and, working with us, we appreciate it when we finally see it. Thank You for making these arrangements with us and allowing us to enter into Abraham’s relationship with You.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Abram Gets His First Son at 86

And Hagar bare Abram a son: and Abram called his son’s name, which Hagar bare, Ishmael. And Abram was fourscore and six years old, when Hagar bare Ishmael to Abram. Genesis 16:15-16

Steps 1, 2, 3, 11, 12

Now that Hagar bears him a son Abram is pretty proud of himself for he has helped God with a child. Abram does not yet understand that God does not need Abram’s help – God could give Abram a son in many different ways. But God wanted the son of Abram to be a child of promise rather than a child of works. Abram had worked hard to have this child and he was happy.

Prayer for Today: God, You know how limited our understanding of most anything can be. We pray today that we may learn Your lessons that we may seek You out, and that we may respond to You positively when You seek us out. We recognize that we get caught up in things and we pray again today for Your love, Your mercy, and Your grace.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Hagar Runs Away from Abram and Sarai

But Abram said unto Sarai, Behold, thy maid is in thy hand; do to her as it pleaseth thee. And when Sarai dealt hardly with her, she fled from her face. And the angel of the LORD found her by a fountain of water in the wilderness, by the fountain in the way to Shur. 8 And he said, Hagar, Sarai’s maid, whence camest thou? and whither wilt thou go? And she said, I flee from the face of my mistress Sarai. And the angel of the LORD said unto her, Return to thy mistress, and submit thyself under her hands. And the angel of the LORD said unto her, I will multiply thy seed exceedingly, that it shall not be numbered for multitude. And the angel of the LORD said unto her, Behold, thou art with child, and shalt bear a son, and shalt call his name Ishmael; because the LORD hath heard thy affliction.
And he will be a wild man; his hand will be against every man, and every man’s hand against him; and he shall dwell in the presence of all his brethren. And she called the name of the LORD that spake unto her, Thou God seest me: for she said, Have I also here looked after him that seeth me? Genesis 16:6-13

Steps 4, 5, 10

Hagar runs from Sarai. She gets out into the wilderness and finally God finds her to start the discussion. Hagar does not know what will happen but God assures her that she is pregnant and she will have a baby and that that baby will have many children. God tells her to go back and name the baby Ishmael for God had heard about her affliction and would help her with ways that were His own.

Prayer for Today: When we run away from our duties we ask that You will help us get our thinking straightened out. Help us to trust You and come to talk to You about our problems. Help us to remember that it is only You that can help us. Help us to get back to our duties and get them done in Your power and Your strength.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Fighting Among the Wives

And he went in unto Hagar, and she conceived: and when she saw that she had conceived, her mistress was despised in her eyes. And Sarai said unto Abram, My wrong be upon thee: I have given my maid into thy bosom; and when she saw that she had conceived, I was despised in her eyes: the LORD judge between me and thee. But Abram said unto Sarai, Behold, thy maid is in thy hand; do to her as it pleaseth thee. And when Sarai dealt hardly with her, she fled from her face. Genesis 16:4-6

Steps 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

The inevitable happens and the wives start to fight with each other and the household is disrupted. Sarai, as the first wife, is upset with Hagar the second wife. But Hagar was pregnant and thought herself better than Sarai. Abram judges that Hagar is still the first and special wife and she is granted power over Hagar and treats her in a hard manner and Hagar flees from her persecutor. Abram, Sarai, and now Hagar all do things without talking to God about the problems. They seek to solve it their own way and keep creating chaos.

Prayer for Today: God, thank You for making things simple for us. We have great difficulty with simple things, and complicated things are worse. Please help us to talk to You first before putting our plans into effect. Since You know the end from the beginning help us to trust in Your plans over our plans. Thank You for being there to rescue us from us.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Abram Loses Sight of God

Now Sarai Abram’s wife bare him no children: and she had an handmaid, an Egyptian, whose name was Hagar. And Sarai said unto Abram, Behold now, the LORD hath restrained me from bearing: I pray thee, go in unto my maid; it may be that I may obtain children by her. And Abram hearkened to the voice of Sarai.
And Sarai Abram’s wife took Hagar her maid the Egyptian, after Abram had dwelt ten years in the land of Canaan, and gave her to her husband Abram to be his wife. And he went in unto Hagar, and she conceived… Genesis 16:1-4

Steps 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 10, 11, 12

Abram had been assured by God that he would have many children. But Abram had difficulty trusting that God would do for him what He said He would do. Abram logically calculated how to handle this problem and his wife Sarai even helped him out with an idea. The idea was to get a second wife. This was against God’s counsel for in the Creation He had made it clear that His plan was one wife and one husband. By violating this arrangement Abram and Sarai started in motion a whole lot of chaos and confusion. The plan was to get a second wife, and Sarai chose a non-recovery oriented wife for Abram, and he “knew” her, or had sex with her, and she conceived. The plan technically was a success, but a disaster in reference to relationships.

Prayer for Today: God, You have promised us many things. We are tempted to help You like Abram attempted to help You. Please help us to learn how to trust You that You know what You are doing and if You need our help You will tell us. Help us to trust You for You are far more consistent, healthy, and well rounded than what we are. Help us to be like You are.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Probationary Time

And when the sun was going down, a deep sleep fell upon Abram; and, lo, an horror of great darkness fell upon him. And he said unto Abram, Know of a surety that thy seed shall be a stranger in a land that is not theirs, and shall serve them; and they shall afflict them four hundred years; And also that nation, whom they shall serve, will I judge: and afterward shall they come out with great substance.
And thou shalt go to thy fathers in peace; thou shalt be buried in a good old age.
But in the fourth generation they shall come hither again: for the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet full. Genesis 15:12-16

Steps 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 10, 11, 12

God can see the future. He is the only One who knows what will happen and He has made arrangements to deal with all things. He tells His Friend Abram that His descendents will be in captivity for 400 years. He tells Abram that his descendents will come out of Egypt with great substance. He also tells Abram to be careful of the Amorites for their probationary time is not yet full because they have not turned totally evil like the people before the flood. God will do everything He can to save everyone, and yet preserve their ability to freely choose to obey, or disobey – because He loves them.

Prayer for Today: God, thank You for Your patience with us. We have practiced iniquity and we are thankful that You have not forgotten us as we often forget you. Teach us that we need Your presence and Your guidance. Thank You for Your mercies.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

The Good News According to Abram.

After these things the word of the LORD came unto Abram in a vision, saying, Fear not, Abram: I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward. And Abram said, Lord GOD, what wilt thou give me, seeing I go childless, and the steward of
my house is this Eliezer of Damascus? And Abram said, Behold, to me thou hast given no seed: and, lo, one born in my house is mine heir. And, behold, the word of the LORD came unto him, saying, This shall not be thine heir; but he that shall come forth out of thine own bowels shall be thine heir. And he brought him forth abroad, and said, Look now toward heaven, and tell the stars, if thou be able to number them: and he said unto him, So shall thy seed be. And he believed in the LORD; and he counted it to him for righteousness. Genesis 15:1-6

Steps 1, 2, 3, 11, 12

God spoke to Abram and promised that He would be able to watch over Abram and supply his needs. Abram pointed out a problem, that he was childless, and how was this going to be addressed. God showed Abram what He would do – He would give Abram as many children as the stars in the heavens. Abram did not know how God would do such a thing especially since He did not have any children. None the less Abram believed what God said and God counted this as recovery.

Prayer for Today: God help us to trust that when You tell us about what You are going to do in our lives, help us to trust You because You are You. Help us to believe it simply because You said it. Thank You for Your precious gifts and the ability to change us into Your likeness.

Saturday, March 6, 2010


And Melchizedek, king of Salem, brought forth bread and wine; and he was the priest of the Most High God. Genesis 14:18

To whom also Abraham gave a tenth of all; first being by interpretation King of righteousness, and after that also King of Salem, which is King of peace; without father, without mother, without descent, having neither beginning of days, nor end of life; but made like unto the Son of God; abideth a priest continually. Hebrews 7:2-3.

Steps 11, 12

Melchizedek is introduced to the story of Abram, to show us that the priesthood was already in existence before the priesthood of Aaron and Levi. This priest, Melchizedek was already in place ministering the blood of Jesus (see Revelation 13:8) that was to be shed by promise until He actually came and shed His blood on Calvary. So this priesthood was a promise that God was ready to care for the addiction of sin and Abram acknowledged this priesthood and submitted to it. God is always ready to care for our needs, long before we are aware of our needs.

Prayer for Today: God, we thank You that You are always ahead of us. We are so sorry that we are so slow to become aware of You. We feel like children who are slowly growing in our awareness of the truth. Thank You that You are there like a heavenly parent/priest ready to help us at any time. We thank You and accept You today for Your wondrous gifts and grace.

Friday, March 5, 2010

God Introduces the Subject of Tithing

And Melchizedek king of Salem brought forth bread and wine: and he was the priest of the most high God. And he blessed him, and said, Blessed be Abram of the most high God, possessor of heaven and earth: And blessed be the most high God, which hath delivered thine enemies into thy hand. And he gave him tithes of all. Genesis 14:18-20

Steps 4, 5, 10, 11, 12

Tithing means to give 10% of your income to God. Hebrews 7:1-2 Abram gave this tithe to God’ priest Melchizedek. Tithe is a testimony that all which came to you came through the intervention of God. Tithe is a testimony to God that you recognize that He sent you the gift of work, health, opportunity, and success that you are experiencing. Tithe helps His church operate on a safe secure basis and helps other people to find a recovery level relationship with God. Tithe also helps us to keep us safe from the idea that recovery is based on our works. Tithe keeps our hearts soft and open with God.

Prayer for Today: God thank You for supplying us with all of the resources that You grant us. Thank You for protecting us from the idea that we take care of ourselves. Thank You for allowing us to see that You provide us with all of the resources and all of the ideas necessary to accomplish Your holy will. Help us to remember You in all that we do. Keep our hearts soft and open to You and Your guidance and help us to acknowledge Your care by giving You tithe.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Abram Proves He is Brave

And they took Lot, Abram’s brother’s son, who dwelt in Sodom, and his goods, and departed. And there came one that had escaped, and told Abram the Hebrew; for he dwelt in the plain of Mamre the Amorite, brother of Eshcol, and brother of Aner: and these were confederate with Abram. And when Abram heard that his brother was taken captive, he armed his trained servants, born in his own house, three hundred and eighteen, and pursued them unto Dan. And he divided himself against them, he and his servants, by night, and smote them, and pursued them unto Hobah, which is on the left hand of Damascus. And he brought back all the goods, and also brought again his brother Lot, and his goods, and the women also, and the people. Genesis 14:12-16

Steps 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 12

We have seen that when Abram was concerned about his own safety he could be fearful and weak. But when the people from the area of Babylon conquered the kings of Sodom and Gomorrah, and took his nephew Lot, and his family, captive then the brave side of Abram stood out. Abram, and his friends, went to get Lot, and his family. God granted them victory and delivered everyone from Sodom and Gomorrah safe and sound. Abram was a brave and courageous man, under certain circumstances.

Prayer for Today: God, You know our fears and strengths. You know when we will stand courageous for others, and when we will turn our backs and run. Help us to stand firm for You and to do those things that are peaceful in Your sight. Help us to have victory over our own cowardice. Thank You for coming to seek us when Satan took us captive.

God’s Promise for the Land of Israel

And the LORD said unto Abram, after that Lot was separated from him, Lift up now thine eyes, and look from the place where thou art northward, and southward, and eastward, and westward: For all the land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed for ever. And I will make thy seed as the dust of the earth: so that if a man can number the dust of the earth, then shall thy seed also be numbered. Arise, walk through the land in the length of it and in the breadth of it; for I will give it unto thee. Then Abram removed his tent, and came and dwelt in the plain of Mamre, which is in Hebron, and built there an altar unto the LORD. Genesis 13:14-18

Steps 11,12

Abram had been rescued by God in Egypt and returned to the land of Canaan – soon to be named land of Israel. God told him to look all around him and all of the land that he saw would be given to Abram and to his seed forever. His seed was pronounced to be numberless yet Abram had no children yet. Abram trusted God and built an altar to worship God and express his thank for the promises given to him.

Prayer for Today: Help us dear Lord to trust Your promises. Even though we can’t see them happen just yet, help us to trust You as Your friend Abram did. Grant us this gift of trust and help us to hold on to You no matter what we think we see.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Abram Chickens Out

And there was a famine in the land: and Abram went down into Egypt to sojourn there; for the famine was grievous in the land. And it came to pass, when he was come near to enter into Egypt, that he said unto Sarai his wife, Behold now, I know that thou art a fair woman to look upon: Therefore it shall come to pass, when the Egyptians shall see thee, that they shall say, This is his wife: and they will kill me, but they will save thee alive. Say, I pray thee, thou art my sister: that it may be well with me for thy sake; and my soul shall live because of thee. And it came to pass, that, when Abram was come into Egypt, the Egyptians beheld the woman that she was very fair. The princes also of Pharaoh saw her, and commended her before Pharaoh: and the woman was taken into Pharaoh’s house. And he entreated Abram well for her sake: and he had sheep, and oxen, and he asses, and menservants, and maidservants, and she asses, and camels. And the LORD plagued Pharaoh and his house with great plagues because of Sarai Abram’s wife. Genesis 12:10-17

Steps 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 11, 12

Abram had to go to Egypt because of a famine. God had given him a beautiful wife. After thinking about it he concluded that the Egyptians would try to kill him to take his wife so he told his wife to say she was his sister, which was half true. Sarai was Abram’s half sister but she was also his wife. Abram did not trust God to watch over him so he lied to protect himself. The Egyptians took her to be the wife of the Egyptian king and God interceded to protect them both. God confronted Abram about his lying and showed that He could watch over them.

Prayer for Today: God, You know we would do most anything to protect ourselves from harm or danger. Help us to learn from Abram that You can protect us. Help us to trust in You more than our manipulative ways. Thank You for Your love and patience with us.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Abram Obeys God

Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee: And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing: And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed. So Abram departed, as the LORD had spoken unto him; and Lot went with him: and Abram was seventy and five years old when he departed out of Haran. Genesis 12:1-4

Steps 1, 2, 3, 11, 12

Abram recognizes God’s voice and chooses to obey Him. God promises to make of Abram’s descendents a mighty nation and all who bless Abram will be blessed and all who abuse him in any way will be cursed. God also promises that through Abram’s lineage all of the families of the earth will be blessed so we know that Messiah will come through Abraham. So a descendent of Adam, through Noah, through Shem, through Abram will be the Christ. With all of this in mind Abram obeys God by faith.

Prayer for Today: God, thank You again that You would choose to work through weak human beings like Abram. I trust that if You will work through him then You can work through us as well. Thank You for not giving up on us. Use us in any way You can, for we choose to cooperate with You.