God Almighty

6 June 2021 PM – Genesis 17:1-27 – Gen2021 – Scott Childs
Introduction: A young boy travelling by aeroplane to visit his grandparents sat beside a man who happened to be a university professor. The boy was reading a Sunday school take-home paper, and the professor thought he would have some fun with the lad. “Young man,” said the professor, “if you can tell me something God can do, I will give you a big, shiny apple.” The boy thought for a moment and then replied, “Mister, if you can tell me something God can’t do, I’ll give you a whole barrel of apples!” (Source Unknown)
Transition: This evening, I want us to take another look at our great God that it might boost our faith in Him.
  1. His Person
a.         He is El Shaddai
1)         El Shaddai is Hebrew for God Almighty (v.1). El refers to God. Shaddai speaks of His almighty ability. Our God is unlimited in power and ability. Jeremiah 32:27 records these words of God for us, “Behold, I am the LORD, the God of all flesh: is there any thing too hard for me?
2)         We sing that chorus that says, “My God is so great, so strong and so mighty, there’s nothing my God cannot do.” We sing it. We say it. We even pray it, yet so often we live like Abram and Sarai, as if our God is weak and limited.
b.         Here, Jehovah emphasised His might
1)         Abram and Sarai were weak. They questioned God’s ability to give them a son. Though God had not yet opened the door to give them a son, they “climbed through the window” and got a son through Hagar (Ge 16).
2)         God was about to show Abram His almighty strength. Many times in the Bible, God waited until all human possibility was gone before He stepped in and showed himself the Almighty. We must not be surprised if He does the same in our lives.
3)         Abram was now 99 years old and Sarai was 89. Now that it was humanly impossible for them to have children, El Shaddai was about to do the impossible and give them a son (v.17, 19).
4)         Note God Almighty’s command to Abram (v.1). Abram was to walk before El Shaddai, and be perfect or complete. He was to walk through life in the presence of God Almighty, and to have complete faith in Him. I wonder how many times God Almighty has said the same thing to you and me?
We looked at God’s Person now look at …
2.        His Promise to Abram
a.         God promised to multiply Abram’s seed.
1)         Not only did God promise Abram a son, but he promised to multiply him exceedingly (v.2)
2)         God promised to make him a father of many nations (v.4-6).
3)         To reassure Abram of His promise, God changed his name to Abraham – a father of many nations (v.5). God also changed Sarai’s name to Sarah – a mother of nations.
4)         In his human flesh, Abraham still questioned God’s promise (v.17) and begged God to bless Ishmael (v.18).
5)         God patiently promised Abraham that Sarah would bear a son (v.19, 21).
6)         In answer to Abraham’s (perhaps unwise) prayer, God blessed Ishmael at his request (v.20).
b.         God promised to give Abram land
1)         Abram had God’s promise of land (v.8)
2)         His seed would receive all the land of Canaan (v.8)
c.          God’s promises were beyond human ability
1)         From a human perspective, Sarah could not have children at her age.
2)         The land of Canaan belonged to other nations. Abraham lacked the manpower and ability to conquer those nations and take their land.
3)         These promises would take absolute miracles and the mighty power of God to perform. That is exactly what God desired.
4)         Turn with me to 2 Chronicles 16. King Asa had been a good king. However, in his senior years, when Baasha king of Israel fought against him, rather than trusting in Almighty God, he hired the Syrians to help him. Because of this foolish act of distrust in God, God sent to him these words by the prophet Hanani. Read 2 Chronicles 16:7-9. That is awesome! God is constantly looking for opportunities to show Himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward him.
5)         Now, turn to Isaiah 40 and consider Isaiah’s description of God Almighty.
a)         (Isaiah 40:12) “Who hath measured the waters in the hollow of his hand, and meted out heaven with the span, and comprehended the dust of the earth in a measure, and weighed the mountains in scales, and the hills in a balance?
b)         (Isaiah 40:15) “Behold, the nations are as a drop of a bucket, and are counted as the small dust of the balance: behold, he taketh up the isles as a very little thing.
c)         (Isaiah 40:26) “Lift up your eyes on high, and behold who hath created these things, that bringeth out their host by number: he calleth them all by names by the greatness of his might, for that he is strong in power; not one faileth.
d)         (Isaiah 40:28-29) “Hast thou not known? hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the LORD, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? there is no searching of his understanding. He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength.
We looked at God’s Person and His Promise, now look at …
3.        His Potential Today
a.         God is still the Almighty – the El Shaddai
1)         It is great to know that our God never changes. (Hebrews 13:8) “Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.” He is the same Almighty God today that He was when He spoke to Abram.
2)         God is still looking for opportunities to show Himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward him. We must remember this.
3)         A. W. Tozer spoke this challenging thought, “God is looking for people through whom He can do the impossible. What a pity that we plan only the things we can do by ourselves.”
4)         God is still the God who created all that exists. He is still the God who made a dry path across the Red Sea, made the sun stand still for Joshua, kept Daniel alive in the lion’s den, and raised Lazarus from the dead. God is not growing old and weak. He is still the El Shaddai.
5)         The Apostle Paul described God as, “ him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us,” (Ephesians 3:20).
b.         God is able to help us in time of need.
1)         What do you need from God this evening?
2)         Do you need something that seems humanly impossible?
3)         Are you sure that your request is His will?
4)         Do you truly believe that God is ABLE to meet your need?
5)         Is your heart perfect toward God?
6)         Like a prudent parent, God does not give us everything we ask for when we want it. He knows what is best for us, and when we truly need it. When it seems that God is not meeting our needs, we must not question His ability. He IS the El Shaddai. Instead, we must examine our hearts, evaluate our walk with Him, assess our request, wait patiently, and be willing to accept His will – even if His answer is “NO”.
Conclusion: Is your God the El Shaddai? If so, He is unlimited in power and ability. He can do exceeding abundantly above all that you can ask or think. He is not a gene who will give you every foolish wish. He is an all-wise, loving, heavenly Father who wants to meet your genuine needs. Will you keep your heart perfect before Him and then trust His explicitly? If we do our part, our El Shaddai will do His part.
Song: Praise ye the Lord, the Almighty 13