Genesis 17:1-8 (ESV)
1When Abram was ninety-nine years old the LORD appeared to Abram and said to him, “I am God Almighty; walk before me, and be blameless, 2that I may make my covenant between me and you, and may multiply you greatly.” 3Then Abram fell on his face. And God said to him, 4“Behold, my covenant is with you, and you shall be the father of a multitude of nations. 5No longer shall your name be called Abram, but your name shall be Abraham, for I have made you the father of a multitude of nations. 6I will make you exceedingly fruitful, and I will make you into nations, and kings shall come from you. 7And I will establish my covenant between me and you and your offspring after you throughout their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and to your offspring after you. 8And I will give to you and to your offspring after you the land of your sojournings, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession, and I will be their God.”
I remember playing the game Clue when I was a kid (in fact, I just played a new version of it recently). In the game, you gather clues to solve a mystery. As we continue to search the Bible, we find the promise continues to grow. God repeats the promise He made to Abraham, expanding on it. That promise has far reaching effects; it includes all of Abraham’s descendants, and it is not just for this moment in time. It has everlasting implications.
The promise that God makes is to be present, to have a personal relationship, with the descendants of Abraham. God’s promise is one of being intricately involved in life.
The promise becomes ours when we place our trust in Jesus, for he is the king who will come from Abraham, who will reign for eternity. Romans 4:13 (NIV2011) says, “It was not through the law that Abraham and his offspring received the promise that he would be heir of the world, but through the righteousness that comes by faith.”
Today, the conditions are the same. It is not through law keeping, but through faith in Jesus that we become heirs to the promise. Galatians 3:29 (NIV2011) tells us that, “If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.”
The gift that was given is, not just for Abraham but, for all who believe in Jesus. It is a promise of God’s presence in daily life, and the promise of a King who will reign for eternity, revealing the character of God to those who believe. As you continue to prepare for Christmas (Christ’s visitation), look for His presence in your life today.
Memory Verse: Romans 4:16 (NIV2011) Therefore, the promise comes by faith, so that it may be by grace and may be guaranteed to all Abraham’s offspring—not only to those who are of the law but also to those who have the faith of Abraham. He is the father of us all.