DAILY DISCIPLINE #48
By Colleen M. Donahue
In our last study, we began to look at Abraham, one of the first "heroes of our faith". We followed his life from when he first heard God's call in Ur (Southern Iraq today) to the promised land of Canaan. Like Abraham, we saw how God asks each of His children to follow His call with wholehearted obedience. It is never good enough to go halfway with God. When we choose to follow Him, we take our position as people who live "IN" the world but that are not "OF" the world.
Abraham learned much of this through his mistakes and sins. Finally, we left him in Egypt rebuked and humiliated by a heathen king. He was certainly a great man in the making, but God had yet many lessons to teach him. So let us continue with...
PART 2 - ABRAHAM--Learning to Lean on God Alone
Day 1- When Abraham finally left Egypt to go back to Canaan who did he take with him?
Day 2 -Lot was the son of Abraham's dead brother Haran (Gen.11:31). He seems to be one of those men who are involved in great movements of God, not because of personal conviction but because a current of friends swept him along.
Day 3 -These are individuals that ride along for the excitement without knowing the power that inspires it. If they are left to abide in the camp they will lower the spiritual tone. These are the ones that allure to worldly policy, suggest methods that would not occur to us, and draw us back to the Egyptian world. No doubt Abraham now recognizes this. What does he suggest to Lot?
Day 4 -Perhaps you are involved with a person like Lot who is a hindrance and you seem powerless to know how to disentangle yourself. Your only hope is to bear with them quietly until God sets you at liberty. How did God free Abraham of his alliance with Lot?
Day 5 -"The outward separation of the body from the world of the ungodly is incomplete unless accompanied and supplemented by the inner separation of the spirit. It is not enough to leave Ur, Haran, and Egypt. We must be rid of Lot also. Though we lived in a monastery, yet so long as there was an alien principle in our breast, a Lot in our heart-life, there could not be that separation to God which is the condition of the growth of faith, and of all those higher forms of the true life which make earth most like heaven. Lot must go!" -F.B.Meyer
Day 6- When a man is very sure of God he can afford to hold lightly the things of the world. So it was with Abraham. He gave Lot first choice and trusted God with what was left for himself. How did God honor his generous heart?
Day 7- Lot made no pretense to find out what God wanted for him. He chose solely from his own selfish motive for success and by what he thought looked the best. What was the area like that Lot moved to?
Genesis 13:11-13 (especially vs.13)
Day 8- We can often find ourselves boasting about our plans or the things we want to buy and do --- choosing for ourselves as Lot did. But what is the reality of it all? James 4:13-14
What ought we to do?
Day 9- What often "looks the best" to us can end up the worst. What happened in the area that Lot moved into?
What ultimately happened to Lot?
Genesis 14: 12
Day 10- Men like Abraham who live a life of separation and devotion towards God are those who can act swiftly and successfully when a situation arises. What did Abraham do when he heard about Lot?
Day 11- Times of great success can often be times of our greatest temptation. What did the King of Sodom offer Abraham?
Day 12- Abraham seems to have been prepared for this temptation. His answer reflects that he had already thought about it for he speaks as of a past transaction. What oath had he already made with God?
Day 13- There is a close parallel between this suggestion of the King of Sodom and the Lord's temptation in the wilderness. What had Satan offered Jesus?
Day 14- This same temptation at some point hits all of us. Perhaps it is some little compromise we can make for the security of what the world can offer. What does scripture make very clear?
James 4:4 / I John 2:15-17
Day 15- "Besides, what right have we to depend on revenues of the world, we, who are heirs to the possessor of heaven and earth, the children of the great king: to whom, in giving us His Son, He has also pledged to give us all things? Happy are they who prefer to be pensioners on the daily providence of God to being dependent on the gold of Sodom, the wages of iniquity." F.B.Meyers
I Chronicles 29:12/ Isaiah 46:4/ Matthew 7:11 / Philippians 4:19
Day 16- What three things does God now say to Abraham in a vision?
Day 17- God, in promising to be Abraham's SHIELD, was meeting an important need in his life. Abraham was a shepherd, living in the open, and surrounded by possible hostilities on all sides. He had cause to fear until now. This promise extends to all of Abraham's children (which includes us today) and is repeated many times in scripture.
Deuteronomy 33:26-29 / Psalm 91:4 / Psalm 125:2 / Hebrews 13:5-6
Day 18- Not only did God want to protect Abraham but He wanted to be and is the reward of a lonely heart. Perhaps we feel we are missing something in our life ----
a spouse, children, a home, enough money, direction, etc. The LORD HIMSELF wants to fill that void in your life.
Day 19- Despite God's comfort to Abraham in promising to be his shield and reward, Abraham pours out his heart to God in the night. What is the bitter disappointment of his life? And what is his own solution?
Day 20- Man, who is so dictated by time, can often interpret God's delays as His denials. Yet, the delay often indicates a deeper work that God is doing in all the concerned hearts.
2 Peter 3:9
Day 21- What counsel does the Scripture give us when it seems that the promise -- whatever it is for us -- will never come?
Romans 12:12/ Hebrews 10:36 / James 1:4 / Psalm 37:7a
Day 22- Abraham's own solution for an heir was not at all satisfactory to God. What two points does God now make clear to Abraham?
Day 23- Delays are not God's final answer to hearts that trust in Him. They are like winter before the spring. How does God now encourage Abraham?
Day 24- Abraham's next words are so important that they were destined to become the pattern for men and women down through the centuries.
Day 25- Abraham was finally beginning to understand that the promise was not going to be fulfilled through any of his own man-made efforts.
Day 26- God was planning a solution that would transcend all the natural laws. How was Abraham to take hold of the promise?
Day 27- Faith in God is often mistaken for turning a blind eye to the facts of a matter. Faith is able to look straight at the facts but still see God behind it all.
Day 28 Through this encounter with God, Abraham was encouraged and strengthened. What was he now absolutely sure about?
Day 29- Are you sure about God's promises for your life?
In Part 3 of our study about Abraham, we'll see that God has more to teach about learning to believe.
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