Sunday, March 10, 2013

Mar 10 - Genesis 18

Today's reading in our daily plan is Genesis 18. Take a moment to pray, asking God to speak to you from this passage. Then read, using the following notes and questions to help you get everything out of the passage.

SAY WHAT? (What is the passage saying?)
  • There’s an interesting dialogue between Abraham and God in the first part of this chapter. 
  • God reiterates to Abraham that within a year he will have his promised son even though he and his wife are very old.
  • Then we see that Abraham was clearly a good man. God said he was going to “investigate” the wickedness of a nearby town to see if it should be destroyed, and Abraham has the nerve to confront God and ask him to spare the city. Abraham asked God 6 times not to destroy the city. That took a lot of guts.
  • How God is acting might strike you as strange because it almost is like he’s walking around looking for someone who's messing up so he can wipe them out.

SO WHAT? (What are the underlying principles?)
  • You might be wondering who the other two men were that God was walking with. Honestly, we don’t know for sure. We find out that it’s two angels, who later visit Sodom, but we don’t know their names.
  • The bravery on Abraham’s part for people he didn’t live with shows his heart for other people. We can tell by Abraham’s “apologetic” requests that he feared God may kill him just for questioning him but Abraham couldn’t stand by and not speak out for the people of the city. How God responded to Abraham showed that Abraham had found favor in God’s eyes because God gave Abraham his requests. Maybe if Abraham would have asked once more, God would have spared the city all together; we don’t know.
  • Most often we see God in the Bible be patient with our sins, so we can only assume that God had been very patient with these cities but they refused to turn back to God. The other thing we can assume is that, because of the depravity of these cities, they were causing people a lot of pain. So maybe that also had something to do with why God intervened.

NOW WHAT? (How will you personally apply this passage?)
  • This should leave us with a question: Would we be willing to confront God to save the lives of people we don’t know? 
  • A more cutting question: Would our lives be righteousness enough for God to listen to us? 
  • How close are you walking with God right now? Is there anything you need to talk to him about that you haven’t been?