Intermediate Bible Study
In Genesis we are introduced to one of the most important characters of the Bible. Let us study his life in detail to learn from him what kind of faith God expects us to have.
Faith (or belief) comes only from hearing God (Romans 10:17). Look at these two events in Abraham's life to see exactly what faith is. Abraham lived in Ur when God came to him and told him to leave his land, friends and relatives and to "go to a land I will show you." Imagine the faith it took for Abraham to gather his possessions and leave not even knowing where he was going!" He trusted God, and left simply because God told him to go. This helps us to know what faith is.
Another time God told Abraham to take his son and offer him as a sacrifice. Abraham arose early, taking his son to the place God had said. He would have killed his own son simply because God said to do it! You can read of how God stopped him in Genesis 22. It is a thrilling story.
Because of his faith, God selected Abraham and his descendants (his sons, grandsons, etc.) and promised that some day Christ would come through them. God said to Abraham, "In thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed." (Genesis 22:18). Galatians 3:16 shows us that the word "seed" referred to Jesus. The promise was that some day Jesus would be born to bring a blessing to all nations.
Abraham had several children (Gen. 25:2,12, 19) but the blessing was to come through Isaac. Isaac was born when Abraham was an old man (Genesis 21:2), according to the promise of God. When Isaac grew up God promised to him "in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed." (Genesis 26:4). Christ was to come through Isaac.
God repeated the same promise to Jacob that he had made to Abraham and Isaac (Genesis 28:14). We read of the life of Jacob in Genesis 25-49 and learn of the time he deceived his father, (Genesis 27), the time he had to leave his home to keep his brother from killing him (Genesis 27:41-28-22), the time he had to work 14 years as payment for his wives." (Genesis 29, 30).
In fact, God chose Jacob, Isaac's son, and changed his name to Israel. His twelve sons became the heads of the twelve tribes of Israel. Much of the history of the Old Testament is concerning God's dealing with Jacob's descendants, the children of Israel.
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