Genesis 15:1-6 NLT Afterward the LORD spoke to Abram in a vision and said to him, “Do not be afraid, Abram, for I will protect you, and your reward will be great.” But Abram replied, “O Sovereign LORD, what good are all your blessings when I don't even have a son? Since I don't have a son, Eliezer of Damascus, a servant in my household, will inherit all my wealth. You have given me no children, so one of my servants will have to be my heir.” Then the LORD said to him, “No, your servant will not be your heir, for you will have a son of your own to inherit everything I am giving you.” Then the LORD brought Abram outside beneath the night sky and told him, “Look up into the heavens and count the stars if you can. Your descendants will be like that—too many to count!” And Abram believed the LORD, and the LORD declared him righteous because of his faith.
How many times do we sacrifice what God wants to do in our lives because we can't see past the problems? Do we limit what God wants to do in our lives through our own natural abilities or inabilities? Do we judge God's power to do the impossible by what we see in the natural?
When God first began speaking with Abram about giving him a son, Abram couldn't see the greatness of God's ability to do the impossible because he was limited by his view of the problem. He couldn't see the solution because of the largeness of his circumstances. Abram assumed that things were going to continue as they had and he would eventually die and all that he had worked for throughout his life would go to an outsider because he had no heir of his own. God was offering him all that He was and had and Abram couldn't see the vastness of it because of his focus on the problem.
God had to take Abram outside of his own surroundings to give him an illustration of what He wanted to do in and through Abram's life. Sometimes we have to leave where we are to see what God wants to lead us into. When Abram opened himself up to see what God was showing him his perspective on his situation changed. All of a sudden he could see that God really was the God of impossibilities and He wanted to do the impossible in Abram's life.
It is said in Genesis 15:6 that Abram “believed” the LORD!
That word for believed is the Hebrew word aman and it means to consider trustworthy; to stand fast in one spot. Considering something trustworthy is an act of full trusting or believing. This is the emphasis in this portion of scripture, which is the the first biblical occurrence of aman, where Abram believed in the Lord; and He counted it to him for righteousness. The meaning here is that Abram was full of trust and confidence in God, and that he did not fear Him. It was not primarily in God's word that he believed, but in God Himself.
When God convinced Abram that He would do the impossible in his life in giving him a son Abram was able to stand fast believing that God was trustworthy and would do what He had promised. When we come to the place that God is bigger than our doubts or fears we will be able to stand firm on what He has promised each one of us.
What is it that God has promised to do in your life that you are struggling to believe?
Jesus told His disciples when they were struggling with their faith that they should “Have faith in God”. (Mark 11:22) The foundation that we build our faith on has to be a firm foundation of truth. Only God offers that. There is nothing that the world can offer that compares to what God can and will do in a believer's life. In another place Jesus asked His disciples, “Where is your faith”. (Luke 8:25) What had they placed their faith in? In Luke 17:5 the apostles asked Jesus to increase their faith and He responded with this:
Luke 17:6 So the Lord said, “If you have faith as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, 'Be pulled up by the roots and be planted in the sea,' and it would obey you.”
It's not a matter of how big our faith is; it's a matter of how big our God is and how we respond in alignment with that truth. Jesus said they could take faith as small as a mustard seed and speak it out to their problem and it would obey them. Unbelief limits your faith.
F.B. Meyer said, “Unbelief puts circumstances between itself and Christ, so as not to see Him....Faith puts Christ between itself and circumstances.”
This reminds me of Jesus when it says in Hebrews 12:2 “looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”
Jesus put His trust in God; His faith had a firm foundation and then He looked at the joy of redeeming mankind, paying the price for the penalty for our sin, instead of the distraction of the pain and shame of going to the cross. He put His faith into action by focusing on the solution instead of the problems. Jesus put the greatness of His Father between Himself and His circumstances. He looked to God to bring Him into the fullness of His destiny as the Savior of the world. Faith puts God between us and our circumstances.
What assumptions have you allowed to come between you and what God has planned for your future? Is it that you assume that things will never be any different than what they are now? Have you assumed that your problems are too big for God to do anything about? How about this one: have you assumed that it's too late or that you are too old to fulfill the plan that God has for your life?
All of these assumptions keep us caged in the present to where we can't see our way out to experience the future! How about changing our assumptions? What about changing our thoughts and actions to align with the truth of God's word?
Later in the book of Romans we see how Abraham changed so he could experience the reality of what God had promised him. We would be wise to adopt his attitude for victory in our lives as well.
Romans 4:18-24 NLT When God promised Abraham that he would become the father of many nations, Abraham believed Him. God had also said, “Your descendants will be as numerous as the stars,” even though such a promise seemed utterly impossible! And Abraham's faith did not weaken, even though he knew that he was too old to be a father at the age of one hundred and that Sarah, his wife, had never been able to have children. Abraham never wavered in believing God's promise. In fact, his faith grew stronger, and in this he brought glory to God. He was absolutely convinced that God was able to do anything he promised. And because of Abraham's faith, God declared him to be righteous.
Through all the time that Abraham and Sarah waited for Isaac to be born, the scriptures say that his faith grew stronger, not weaker. He brought glory to God because he continued to stand in faith. He was absolutely convinced that God was able to do that which He had promised! What a testament to standing in faith! This was an extreme situation that required strong faith and Abraham lived it so we could see what we need to do in situations that seem like impossibilities in our own lives. What God has done for one He will do for another. He is no respecter of persons!
Father, I thank You for recording within Your word the stories of those that have gone before us that can show us the way to take to achieve the promises that You have given each one of us. Thank You for Abraham's strong faith and the encouragement it gives us when we read of how he stood in faith believing that You were able to do that which You had promised him. Father, I know that there are many today that are struggling to believe that things will be different in their lives; that loved ones will come to salvation; that they will overcome illnesses and receive Your healing touch to restore them to good health; that they will find new jobs that will relieve the financial pressure in their lives and many more problems that we can't even begin to imagine. You, Lord, know exactly where each person is in their walk of faith. I pray that You will show them the good plan that You have for their lives and instill within them the ability to believe You to work and bring into manifestation what they can't do for themselves. Help them to continue to believe until they see the reality of the promise! In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.