Bible Society of South Africa
Neville Turley

Jesus, our Messiah – Day 2

God’s promise

Bible text(s)

15The angel of the LORD called to Abraham from heaven a second time, 16“I make a vow by my own name — the LORD is speaking — that I will richly bless you. Because you did this and did not keep back your only son from me, 17I promise that I will give you as many descendants as there are stars in the sky or grains of sand along the seashore. Your descendants will conquer their enemies. 18All the nations will ask me to bless them as I have blessed your descendants — all because you obeyed my command.”

Genesis 22:15-18GNBOpen in Bible reader

16For God loved the world so much that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not die but have eternal life.

The angel of the Lord called out to Abraham from heaven a second time. He said, “I am taking an oath in my own name. I will bless you because of what you have done,” announces the Lord. “You have not held back your son, your only son. So I will certainly bless you. I will make your children after you as many as the stars in the sky. I will make them as many as the grains of sand on the seashore. Your children will take over the cities of their enemies. All nations on earth will be blessed because of your children. All of that will happen because you have obeyed me.” Genesis 22:15-18 (NIV)

The recurrent theme, throughout the 39 books of the Old Testament, is the promised coming of the Messiah to earth and the establishing of his kingdom.

This Messianic prophecy disclosed to Abraham was that, through his offspring, all nations on earth would be blessed.

Abraham lived about 2 000 years before the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ. He was the founding father of the Hebrew nation (Genesis 12:2). In the Bible, he is depicted as a man of great faith, a father figure and a born leader.

Abraham was a devout man, absolutely devoted and obedient to God. So much so, that he was prepared to sacrifice his own beloved son, Isaac, if that was what God wanted.

But, God stayed Abraham’s hand.

The practice of child sacrifices, a ritual among some godless people in those times, is not God’s way. God does not desire the death of a person, but repentance. “God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son. Anyone who believes in him will not die, but will have eternal life.” (John 3:16)

Our Father does not want sacrifices from us. He wants us to turn away from evil, confess our sins and seek his forgiveness through Jesus, our Saviour.

If we do so, we will be blessed beyond measure. The choice is ours.

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