In the book of Genesis we read of Abraham and Sarah. I'll take a couple of posts to break down their marriage because there is so much recorded. Abraham is introduced to us as Abram in Gen. 12 where God called Abram to "go forth from your country and your kindred and your father's house to the land that I will show you" (12:1). God promised Abraham that he would bless him, and all the families of the earth through him.
We don't read the inner workings of Abraham's mind. We don't know how he deliberated about what God had required of him. We just see his response. God told Abraham to go. "So Abraham went, as the Lord had told him..." (12:4). Do you see that? God said go. So Abraham went. I think we read over that without letting it sink in. How many people do you know (maybe it's you) who long to hear "a word from the Lord" concerning their life when they won't do what God has already clearly said?
Today the conversation might look more like this: "God said go forth from your country and your kindred and your father's house to the land that I will show you." "So modern American Christian stayed where he was and watched television and bought new electronic toys and ate steak and potatoes in the comfort of his own house and pretended to seek God's will on any number of petty gray areas, along with all the other people in his church." I hate to be so blunt, but this is clearly what we see all around us.
As a pastor, people come to me often asking for counsel about their lives. The questions I receive are often gray areas created by a refusal to follow God's clear word about some earlier issue. For instance, Bob and Samantha (fictional) come to me and ask about some struggle they're having. As I help them walk through their situation and their hearts about the situation, I inevitably see how simple obedience at an earlier point would have cut off Bob's and Sam's dilemma before it ever came up. So the idea that Bob and Sam are struggling to learn and follow God is really just a smoke screen for earlier blatant disobedience.
We do not see that with Abraham. When God spoke to Abraham, he obeyed. We'll see that this is the pattern of Abraham's life. Whenever God would speak to him, he would follow - quickly and completely. Now Abraham wasn't perfect. Far from it. He struggled with fear and doubt at times, particularly when God seemed silent. But one thing we see about Abraham up front is this: when God gave Abraham a direct command, Abraham obeyed. Where are the Abraham's today? Surely there are some left in America today who haven't bowed the knee to false gods.
What about Abraham's wife, Sarah? Where was she when God was commanding Abraham to leave his home? She was at his side. "And Abram took Sarai his wife, and Lot his brother's son, and all their possessions that they had gathered, and the people that they had acquired in Haran, and they set out to go to the land of Canaan..." (12:5). Sarah, known as "Sarai" back then, went with Abraham.
Again, we don't read the inner workings of Sarah's mind. We don't know how she felt about leaving the security, comfort and stability of her home. What we do know is that when Abraham obeyed God, Sarah obeyed God with him. She didn't fight him. She didn't question him. She didn't divorce him. She followed God and Abraham. Where are the Sarah's today? Where are the women who aren't afraid to follow their husbands? Surely there are some left in America who have not bowed the knee to false gods.