The essence of faith in God
The Lord said to Abram: Go out from your land, your relatives, and your father’s house to the land that I will show you. I will make you into a great nation, I will bless you, I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, I will curse anyone who treats you with contempt, and all the peoples on earth will be blessed through you. Genesis 12:1-3
When we read about God’s calling of Abram, we are not simply given a lesson in history. We are actually tracing a story line that takes us all the way to the Lord Jesus himself. So the calling of Abram is the beginning of the nation of Israel and is a story of tremendous significance. It is God who always takes the initiative to implement drastic changes in our lives. The Scripture is filled with examples of how God calls ordinary people and because they believed and trusted Him, they were used mightily to fulfill divine assignments. These assignments were all through the initiatives of God. Just as in the case of Abram, he was taken by surprise when God called him to leave his land, relatives and father’s house and follow God to a place he did not know where. All he knew was to obey and follow God’s directives. God spoke to him and told him that He will begin to build a nation dedicated for His purpose and from where the Savior would come. As Jesus told the Samaritan woman at the well; “We worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews” (John 4:22). If Abram was anything like most of us, he could have thought of all sorts of excuses and arguments for why he shouldn’t go. “Surely the LORD doesn’t want me to do that. I must have misheard him. God wouldn’t ask me to leave everything I’ve ever known behind. I can obey and serve him just fine right here in beautiful Ur.” But what a lesson there is in his obedience! He went forward, not because it made sense, not because it was easy, not because it seemed the most feasible way to raise a family, but simply because God said so. That is the essence of faith. “By faith Abraham, when he was called, obeyed by going out to a place which he was to receive for an inheritance; and he went out, not knowing where he was going” (Hebrews 11:8). Obedience to God based on our faith in Him is what pleases Him. Because we trust and depend on Him, we follow Him even when we don’t know what obedience will bring.
Noel De Guzman