April 15 I Thursday
1 Samuel 27-29
“After this, the word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision: ‘Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your very great reward.’” —Genesis 15:1
After the Lord reaffirmed His covenantal promise with Abram, we find Abram full of worry. Yet, what he was feeling was not hidden from the Lord, as the opening verse of this devotion showed the Lord meeting Abram in a vision and comforting him. Abram was probably concerned about three things: his security, his prosperity and his legacy.
Abram feared his security might be threatened, as he had just rescued his nephew Lot from a marauding army. What if there is retribution from those kings? Abram might have also worried about his prosperity. The king of Sodom offered him all the plunder, but Abram rebuked his offer strongly. But above all, Abram’s deepest concern was his legacy, as he tells the Lord, “Sovereign LORD… You have given me no children; so a servant in my household will be my heir” (Genesis 15:2-3). Abram and his wife Sarai were in their late seventies or early eighties, and with Sarai’s barrenness, there seemed to be no prospect of a descendant for Abram.
God listened to Abram’s concern and reaffirmed His commitment to him. This scene should offer us great comfort, as it reminds us that we can bring our deepest worries and concerns before God. The Lord responded, “This man will not be your heir, but a son who is your own flesh and blood will be your heir.” Then the Lord brought Abram outside and said, “Look up at the sky and count the stars––if indeed you can count them. So shall your offspring be” (Genesis 15:4-5). God directed Abram’s attention to the cosmos as if implying, “Abram, I created all of this and sustain it by My powerful Word. Do you think it is too difficult for Me?”
This is the fourth time God reasserted His commitment to Abram. Even through the ups and downs of Abram, God remained consistent. But this time, it was different; something clicked inside of Abram that Moses, the writer of Genesis, inserted a sentence to draw our attention to what happened. Genesis 15:6 says, “Abram believed the LORD, and He credited it to him as righteousness.” This is a huge statement—Abram believed the Lord’s promise!
Not that Abram had unbelief until this moment, but that he had to let go of his own means, and rest completely on who God is and His faithfulness. By faith, Abram is trusting that God will do what He said He would do. God saw this and credited it to Abram as righteousness, as right standing with God. Do we fully trust in the promises of God, that He is faithful and able to carry them to completion?
Prayer: Lord God, praise You for being a consistent God, even through my ups and downs. I believe in You and Your sure promises. Thank You, Lord.