God our Shield and Great Reward

Genesis 15:1 After this, the word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision: “Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your very great reward.”

Abram came from a great victory over four kings who had taken everything from the five cities of the plain. He rescued the people and their stuff. He did not take a reward for it but gave all the glory to God. But there were some possible fears that he had. He could have feared the revenge of those kings and also the envy and jealousy of his neighbors. But God told him not to fear. He was Abram’s shield and would protect Abram from all danger. He was Abram’s great reward. He promised He would bless Abram.

Just like Abram, a Christian has nothing to fear. God will shield us from dangers, including the coronavirus. Even if we get it, God can still heal us. And even if we die, we will go to heaven.

The person who has to fear is the unbeliever. He has no shield and no great reward. If they die, they will go to hell. I do not want this to happen to them. The greater danger comes after death because we are all infected with sin. The Christian’s sin is nailed to the cross, but the unbeliever still has sin infecting him or her everyday. So I say to those who do not know Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, confesses your sins and believe on Jesus who can save you and protect you. “If you believe in your heart and confess with your mouth, that Jesus Christ is Lord, you will be saved.” (Romans 10:9) Then you have nothing to worry about. Please do this today.

Light and Darkness

I am going back to the creation story because I need to consider several new things in this account.

Today, I want to consider: why did God create light and darkness?

I have been listening to a preacher, Stephen Armstrong on a website called Verse by Verse Ministries. He has pointed out many interesting things in Genesis.

In this first question he pointed out that light and darkness are very often linked with good and evil.

Job 30:26 “When I expected good, then evil came; when I waited for light, then darkness came.

Isaiah 9:2 The people who walk in darkness will see a great light; Those who live in a dark land, the light will shine on them.

Second, he noticed that when God made the new heaven and earth there was no more need for darkness.

All this suggests that God was already preparing to show humans that he knew that sin and evil would exist later on in the world.

Thank you Stephen Armstrong for that observation and insight. We will continue on in the study of Genesis with Verse by Verse Ministries and write about other insights Pastor Armstrong has for us. If you want to listen to his sermons yourself go to http://www.versebyverseministries.org.

Abraham Type of Rescuer

Genesis 14:1-16

I am thinking that this is a type of rescue that shows how Jesus rescued us from the world.

Abram found out that Sodom and Gomorrah and the other cities of the plain were invaded and captured by 4 other kings. This is the world in which we live in. Chedorlaomer could very well be a type of Satan capturing the world for himself.

How many times have we tried to free ourselves from Satan’s rule by trying some self-help books or going to psychologists or hiding behind alcohol and drugs only to see that we are not freed but more entangled in his web.

Abram, like Christ, could have just ignored the fact that his nephew, Lot, was taken captive. Christ could have left us alone to our own devices and let Satan enslave us.

But like Christ, Abram rescued the people of the plain and his nephew, Lot, in particular. Jesus Christ died for the whole world and rose from the grave so that we could have life. The believers are those that benefited most from his sacrifice.

Abram acted out of love for Lot and compassion for his neighbors just like Jesus acted out of love for us and the world. Just like Lot did not deserve Abrams love, for he acted out of selfishness by going to the cities of the plain, we did not deserve Jesus love because we were sinners.

The Precious Life-Blood of Humans

Genesis 9:4-6

But you must not eat meat that has its lifeblood still in it.  And for your lifeblood I will surely demand an accounting. I will demand an accounting from every animal. And from each human being, too, I will demand an accounting for the life of another human being. “Whoever sheds human blood, by humans shall their blood be shed; for in the image of God has God made mankind.

Our blood is precious because of a number of ways.

  1. Our blood is our life. Without blood we cannot live. It carries molecules of oxygen, proteins, carbohydrates and fats that nourish our body and keeps it healthy. It also carries the junk, like carbon dioxide, toxins etc. out of our bodies through our lungs and elimination organs. Our cells would not survive without the blood circulating throughout our bodies.
  2.  More importantly, the blood represents our redemption. In the Old Testament, the Israelites sacrificed animals when they were confessing their sins. It represented what God would do when Jesus Christ came into the world and made Himself to be a sacrifice for the whole world so that we would be redeemed from sin and to God. Jesus is the Lamb of God that takes away the sins of the world.  Now we don’t have to sacrifice animals anymore because the sinless Lamb of God bore our sins on the altar of the cross. His blood was the most precious of all blood.

Abide-John 15:4

Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me.

What does abide mean? It means to remain. So when Jesus says that we are to abide in Him as He abides in us and he uses the analogy of a vine and its branches we see that we are to remain connected to Him in all the areas of our lives. We cannot live without Him. We get our nourishment from Him like a branch does when it is connected to the vine. The branch will only wither on its own and die. We must stay connected to Jesus every single day or we wither without Him. How do we remain connected to Him but by His Word (the Bible) and by prayer (talking to Him) every single day.

Opinions Without Facts

‘When the crowds heard him say this, some of them declared, “Surely this man is the Prophet we’ve been expecting.” Others said, “He is the Messiah.” Still others said, “But he can’t be!…

Source: Opinions Without Facts

Names of God in Old Testament and Jesus

Les Feldick taught that the name Elohim Yahweh or as he said the God Jehovah or LORD God is Jesus or the I AM. I am thinking he is correct because this is the person that appeared to the patriarchs and other Old Testament people. You can watch the episode on YouTube. I am going to leave the video here because I found out I could using the link.

The Difference Between Noah and the People of His Day

The People
Lustful – Genesis 6:1,2
Half-Breeds – Genesis 6:1, 2, 4 (Nephilim were people bred from angels (sons of God) and human woman. https://youtu.be/FC8wWsBKc88
These half breeds corrupted the human genome so much that Jesus could not have come. This is one of the main reasons for the flood.

The second main reason is found in verse 5: The LORD saw how great the wickedness of the human race (not just men but women) had become on the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil.

This verse shows that all people thought about was how to do wicked and evil deeds. They did not believe in God anymore. Not that they did not believe there was a God but that they turned their backs on God. The biggest sin was that of unbelief

But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord vs 8. Why???
Noah was righteous, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked faithfully with God. This does not mean he was sinless but that he believed in God, believed God and obeyed God to the best of his ability. He taught his wife and children that. He preached that to the people of his time. 2 Peter 2:5 It was his faith that saved Noah and his family. Hebrews 11:7

Chaos and Order Darkness and Grace

I know I am going backward but I found something else in chapter 1 of Genesis that is worthy of mention.

I was reading a commentary written by a man named Matthew Henry. He was commenting on verse two and I saw another way the grace of Jesus could be seen.

Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. He said this is like the unregenerated soul, chaotic and empty, useless and without any beauty. Mankind made the earth that way again with his sin. The soul is without God so that it is empty, in confusion and evil. Then the Spirit of God begins to hover over this new world and things begin to happen. Light is turned on by The Word. The sky is made, earth appears, plants begin to grow, birds begin to fly in the sky, and fish in the seas and rivers, animals appear and then the crown of God’s creation: mankind. In the same way, the Spirit of God hovers over us and as soon as we place our faith in Jesus the Light is turned on. The Spirit begins the work of a new creation and we become beautiful and useful to God. Isn’t that a beautiful way of seeing our salvation and regeneration by Jesus Christ through the Holy Spirit.

How We Got Into This Mess and How God Got Us Out of It

Genesis 3 is all about how humans got into the mess of a sin nature.  Basically, the first couple rebelled against God’s strict order to not eat of the “Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil” instead of saying “NO” to the serpent. God warned that if they did that there would be death. Physical death took some time to work but spiritual death came right away.

I noticed something about what Adam and Eve does next after eating the fruit. It’s what man does most of the time when confronted with the bad things they do.

1. They tried to cover up their mess. (They made fig leaf clothes to hide their nakedness. Genesis 3:7 This also shows a tendency for man to say, “I can do it myself.” Obviously, that didn’t work the first time and it doesn’t work now.

2. They tried to hide from God. (Genesis 3:8 )

3. They blamed someone else for their mess. Adam blamed Eve and Eve blamed the serpent.

The only one that can get us out of the mess is God and He started way back in Genesis 3:15. Even though He had to pronounce the consequences of what they did, He gave them a promise and a prediction. That prediction came true over 2000 years ago when Satan (the serpent) tried to kill Jesus off and only managed to “bruise His heel”. Jesus did die but three days later Jesus crushed the serpent’s head by rising from the dead. And He will permanently crush his head when Jesus comes back. So that is how God got us out of the mess we are in and our job is to believe it and accept His gift of love.