"And he [Abram] believed in the Lord,and He accounted it to himfor righteousness."~ Genesis 14:19-20
"And the Lord said to Abram, after Lot had separated from him,'Lift your eyes now and look from the place where you are-northward, southward, eastward, and westward;for all the land which you see I give to you andyour descendants forever.And I will make your descendants as the dust of the earth;so that if a man could number the dust of the earth, then your descendants also could be numbered."~Genesis 13:14-16
Man can choose to select the "best" for himself, but only God can decree whether a possession will be permanent. Lot chose what he thought was the best, but we know it was soon taken away. In fact, Lot left much more behind when leaving Sodom than he had set out (children, his wife, his goods).
Abram on the other hand, chose the peaceable wisdom that comes from above (James 3:17), giving way to Lot. And God determined that Abram's inheritance would be forever.
It makes me wonder of course- what we loose when we choose to grab for ourselves what we think is the "better portion?" What do we miss from God when we refuse to be willing to yield (James 3:17) to esteem others before ourselves (Philippians 2:3) or-- you fill in the blank. It comes down to:
Can we really get the better deal by seeking our own?
Or is the real blessing in obeying God?
"Do not be afraid Abram. I am your shield,your exceedingly great reward."~ Genesis 15:1
I read an interesting quote this week, that spoke in more eloquent tones thoughts that have been circulating in my thinking recently.
Ever since our first mother, Eve, facilely discovered multiple reasons to do what God had expressly commanded her through Adam not to do, we’ve proven to be, in our fallen estate, a darkness-loving lot that excels in creatively justifying any sin-embracing choice we desire to make. This ability wreaks havoc in ethics. No sooner do we learn the right thing than we begin paralogizing in the pursuit of what we think of as “freedom.”
But freedom from God’s Law as a rule of faith and life is no freedom at all. Some think the opposite of Law is Grace. Rather, the opposite of Law is chaos, meaninglessness and death. Thinking which leads to a justification for disobedience is, by definition, wrong thinking.
by Steve Schlissel
How often do you hear law and grace pitted against one another- as if the opposite of law is grace... instead of lawlessness. It goes back to what we are told in 1 Peter 2:16- that our freedom, or liberty, is not to be a covering for evil, but so we may be bond-slaves of Christ.
Surely Abram did not think he was above obeying God.
May we be wise enough to reject the example of Eve who sought loopholes and excuses not obey God's clearly revealed will as many do-- falsely assuming they are exercising freedom rather than rebellion. Instead, may we be wise like Abram who obeyed God and trusted Him alone for his reward. And may we hear Him speak.