Take Heed Lest You Fall
25 April 2021 PM – Genesis 12:6-20 – Gen2021 – Scott Childs
Introduction: In the winter as a boy, Dad cleared the snow from the driveway with the tractor and pushed it into large piles. We used to play a game called “King of the Mountain”. The object of the game was to climb to the top of the pile of snow and keep others from pushing you off the top.
Abram was on a mountaintop in his life. God was blessing him. God had promised to make him a great nation. However, he was about to face circumstances that would push him off the top of that mountain.
Trials or temptations often follow spiritual victories. After a spiritual victory, we must obey the words of (1 Corinthians 10:12) “Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall.“
Transition: This evening we are going to learn the truth of that verse as we examine Abram’s testament, his testing, and his trouble.
1. Abram’s Testament, v.6-9
a. The Lord promised to give him the land, v.7
1) A “testament” is a promise to give property to another. God promised to give Abram’s seed the land where he was standing. This was a great honour for Abram.
2) The Lord appeared to Abram at Shechem [See Map]. Abram was blessed to have God appear to him in a physical form. Before the Bible was complete, God occasionally appeared to people in a human form. Peter assures us that physical appearances of God are not necessary now that we have the complete Bible. (2 Peter 1:19) “We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts:“
3) This was a mountaintop experience for Abram. He responded well to it and built an altar to the Lord.
b. Abram continued to explore the promised land, v.8
1) Abram pitched his tent between Bethel and Ai and there built another altar to the LORD. Here he called upon the name of the LORD [See Map]. He is still in the will of God and still in fellowship with God.
2) God led Abram to Canaan (v.5) and promised to give that land to his seed. God had not yet given him any land, but he had God’s testament that it would be his.
3) He journeyed still southward in the land of Canaan, v.9. As long as he remained in the land of Canaan, he remained in the centre of God’s will.
If you are a Christian, God reveals His general will for your life in the Bible. He wants you to be baptised by immersion after salvation, to join a biblical church, to develop a flourishing relationship with God, to witness, to test all things by the Bible before you get involved, and many other things. As you yield to Him, He will reveal His specific will for your life. See Romans 12:1-2.
2. Abram’s Testing, v.10-13
a. God tested Abram with a famine, v.10
1) Famines are terrible. Crops dry up and die. Grass in the paddocks turns brown. Water sources dry up. Cattle die. People die.
2) God allowed a famine to test Abram’s faith. The Mesopotamia valley was well watered. Famine may have been a new experience for Abram. He had many herds, flocks, and servants under his care.
3) Abram failed to take heed lest he fall, and he chose to sojourn in the land of Egypt to escape the famine. It appears that he stepped out of God’s will.
a) God did not tell him to go to Egypt.
b) Leaving Canaan was a lack of faith.
c) His choice led him into temptation and problems.
“The will of God will never lead you where the grace of God cannot keep you.” – Minnesota Bible Fellowship