Friday, September 15, 2017

eschatology, The Abrahamic Covenant (Gen.10-12)

The genealogies is actually a very important part of eschatology.  We think back to what God said to Eve about her seed (a reference to Jesus) bruising Satan on his head (Genesis 3:15).  From Adam and Eve came Noah, who God brought through the flood along with his three sons and their wives.  From Noah came Abram, and here we see God giving Abram a covenant, which we call the Abrahamic Covenant.  Within this covenant, in the very last sentence, God mentions that through Abram's descendants (seed) all people will be blessed.  THAT is referring to Jesus and His work on the cross.

As well, in this covenant to Abram (or Abraham, as God will soon rename him), God promises him that his descendants (who will become many, and soon become known as the Israelites) will have a very specific portion of land, and God will give them great success.  Land, seed, blessings!...

(Genesis 12:1-8)  Now the Lord said to Abram,
“Go forth from your country,
And from your relatives
And from your father’s house,
To the land which I will show you;
And I will make you a great nation,
And I will bless you,
And make your name great;
And so you shall be a blessing;
And I will bless those who bless you,
And the one who curses you I will curse.
And in you all the families of the earth will be blessed.”
So Abram went forth as the Lord had spoken to him; and Lot went with him. Now Abram was seventy-five years old when he departed from Haran. Abram took Sarai his wife and Lot his nephew, and all their possessions which they had accumulated, and the persons which they had acquired in Haran, and they set out for the land of Canaan; thus they came to the land of Canaan. Abram passed through the land as far as the site of Shechem, to the oak of Moreh. Now the Canaanite was then in the land. The Lord appeared to Abram and said, “To your descendants I will give this land.” So he built an altar there to the Lord who had appeared to him. Then he proceeded from there to the mountain on the east of Bethel, and pitched his tent, with Bethel on the west and Ai on the east; and there he built an altar to the Lord and called upon the name of the Lord.

This covenant is very key to the entire Bible and to eschatology.  In the first few verses, God promises the land, seed and blessings.  The Israelites become very focused on this, and still are waiting (to this day) for this to be perfectly and completely fulfilled.  We know God will bring this about, but only in the Millennium.  The land is theirs!  It is and always will be!  But to be living peacefully on all of their land requires perfect obedience to God.  Therefore notice in verse 2b and 3...

(Genesis 12:2b-3)  "...And so you shall be a blessing; And I will bless those who bless you, And the one who curses you I will curse. And in you all the families of the earth will be blessed.”

The Israelites were CHOSEN (set apart) - to bless the nations - to be holy - to be God's children - to be a light to the world - to be representatives of God - and be witnesses of God's power and love!  Basically, the Israelites were called to be the missionaries to the world.

Today's takeaway:  before we get all judge-y!  No one else would have done much better!  It keeps coming back to - mankind is hopeless!  God gives hope and takes care of all the details!  Therefore, we need God!  And when we love God and are obedient to His will, things go so much better!

(Romans 3:21-26)  But now apart from the Law the righteousness of God has been manifested, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, 22 even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all those who believe; for there is no distinction; 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus; 25 whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in His blood through faith. This was to demonstrate His righteousness, because in the forbearance of God He passed over the sins previously committed; 26 for the demonstration, I say, of His righteousness at the present time, so that He would be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.

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