Genesis 12:4-8 - Seeking Your Destiny PDF Print E-mail

IN THE BEGINNING

Genesis 12:4-8

“Seeking Your Destiny”

 

 

 

The LORD had said to Abram, "Leave your country, your people and your father's household and go to the land I will show you. (Gen 12:1)

 

At this point we don’t really know too much about Abraham. But we do know this: He wanted to do God’s will. He wanted to be right with God. So when God came to Him and said “Go,” he went!

 

You know, God has said the same thing to you that He said to Abraham. He said He has a place for you. He has a destiny. He has a plan. But He’s not just leaving it up to you to figure it out for yourself. In fact He made it very clear that He will lead you there.

 

2 In my Father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you.

3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.

4 You know the way to the place where I am going."

5 Thomas said to him, "Lord, we don't know where you are going, so how can we know the way?"

6 Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

7 If you really knew me, you would know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him." (John 14:2-7)

 

God does have a destiny for you. He does have a plan. How should you seek after that destiny?

 

4 So Abram left, as the LORD had told him; and Lot went with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he set out from Haran.

5 He took his wife Sarai, his nephew Lot, all the possessions they had accumulated and the people they had acquired in Haran, and they set out for the land of Canaan, and they arrived there.

6 Abram traveled through the land as far as the site of the great tree of Moreh at Shechem. At that time the Canaanites were in the land.

7 The LORD appeared to Abram and said, "To your offspring I will give this land." So he built an altar there to the LORD, who had appeared to him.

8 From there he went on toward the hills east of Bethel and pitched his tent, with Bethel on the west and Ai on the east. There he built an altar to the LORD and called on the name of the LORD.

(Gen 12:4-8)

 

 

 

 

I. IT’S TIME TO SEEK YOUR DESTINY

 

God had started Abraham on his journey many years before:

 

Terah took his son Abram, his grandson Lot son of Haran, and his daughter-in-law Sarai, the wife of his son Abram, and together they set out from Ur of the Chaldeans to go to Canaan. But when they came to Haran, they settled there. (Gen 11:31)

 

God started you on your journey a long time ago. But many of us are still in Haran. We were on our way to where God wants us, but we got sidetracked. And we settled there.

 

But it’s time to seek your destiny. It’s time to continue on to where God wants you. You don’t know much time you have left. And you don’t know how long the journey is going to take, so you need to get started now.

 

There are 3 very critical things you need for your journey. You need Abraham, Sarah, and Lot.

 

Each of them represent something vital in the pursuit of God’s destiny for your life.

 

A. Abraham Represents God’s Will

 

1. Every time we see God speaking to Abraham, we see him responding immediately.

What a perfect example of where we need to be on our journey.

a. Not there yet.

 

b. But completely obedient to God on the way.

 

2. Notice what God said about Abraham to Issac (Abraham’s son)

 

4 I will make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and will give them all these lands, and through your offspring all nations on earth will be blessed,

5 because Abraham obeyed me and kept my requirements, my commands, my decrees and my laws." (Gen 26:4-5)

 

By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going. (Heb 11:8)

 

a. Abraham didn’t have to have all the answers to make an intelligent

decision. He just had to know it was God.

b. Faith – trusting obedience to the known will of God. Just obey what

you know.

 

3. On your journey to your destiny you need to be obedient to the known will of God.

 

 

 

 

B. Sarah Represents God’s Grace

 

Grace – “Unmerited Favor.”

 

1. Sarah was considered a cultural disgrace. She was barren, and in that society

your worth as a woman was measured by your ability to bear children. After all,

didn’t God command them to “be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth?”

2. Abraham had every societal right to dump her. No one would have thought less

of him for it. She was, after all, dead wood. She had nothing to contribute, as far

society was concerned.

 

3. Sarah even thought of herself that way. We’ll see later when God tells her that

she’s going to get pregnant, she laughs, because she knows how worthless she

is. She was a loser. She’s worthless. And she knows it.

 

4. But God had other plans. Sarah saw herself as worthless in Haran, but God saw

her as part of His plan in the promised land. Sarah would not get pregnant until

she was where God wanted her.

 

For this was how the promise was stated: "At the appointed time I will return, and Sarah will have a son.” (Rom 9:9)

 

5. God took someone who was worthless…without value…and changed the world.

 

Listen to me, you who pursue righteousness and who seek the LORD: Look to the rock from which you were cut and to the quarry from which you were hewn;

2 look to Abraham, your father, and to Sarah, who gave you birth. When I called him he was but one, and I blessed him and made him many.

(Isa 51:1-2)

 

6. On your journey to your destiny you need to understand that you may not see

yourself as worth much…or of any particular value to God…but God sees you

differently. And He’s ready to pour out His grace – His unmerited favor – on you…at

the right time, in the right place.

 

C. Lot Represents God’s Mercy

Mercy – “Unmerited Compassion.”

 

1. I get the idea that Lot just wasn’t very mature. He made a lot of boneheaded

decisions, which we’ll study later. He brought most of his troubles on himself.

He knew right and wrong…and appeared often to seek to do the right thing

…but messed up a lot! Know anybody like that???

 

2. Lot was Abraham’s nephew. He seems to be very much a schemer, a scoundrel,

and a squirrel. Why Abraham brought him along, we don’t really know, except for

this one little statement earlier in the story:

 

While his father Terah was still alive, Haran died in Ur of the Chaldeans, in the land of his birth. (Gen 11:28)

 

3. Haran was Lot’s father. When Haran died he was apparently raised by his

grandfather Terah…and his uncle Abraham…who had no son. Abraham

apparently felt responsible for him…and loved him enough to want what was

best for him.

 

Exactly how God is with us. He loves us so much and wants what is best for us

in spite of the way we are.

 

4. God is merciful. You don’t deserve the promised land. But in God’s mercy, He

still wants what’s best for you. He still has a plan. He still wants you to fulfill your

destiny.

 

7 and if he rescued Lot, a righteous man, who was distressed by the filthy lives of lawless men

8 (for that righteous man, living among them day after day, was tormented in his righteous soul by the lawless deeds he saw and heard)--

9 if this is so, then the Lord knows how to rescue godly men from trials…

(2 Pet 2:7-9)

 

5. In other words, if God rescued Lot…He’s rescue you. If God was merciful to Lot,

He’ll be merciful to you. And you need that mercy on your journey to your destiny.

 

 

II. IT’S TIME TO BUILD AN ALTAR

The LORD appeared to Abram and said, "To your offspring I will give this land." So he built an altar there to the LORD, who had appeared to him. (Gen 12:7)

Now, I want to give you a real quick review of something we studied back in June – The Altar Principle (from Genesis 8:20)

 

A. The Altar Principle:

 

An altar always represents where you were when you encountered God. But it also always represents where you are when you take the next step of your journey.

 

It’s a remembrance of the past AND a commitment to the future. It is the realization that

it is time to put something behind you, and time to move on.

 

B. The ABC’s Of The Altar Principle:

The Altar Principle is a life-changing principle! There are 6 things that happen when you meet

God at the altar:

 

 

1. Anticipate the full Approval of God

 

2. Belief in the full Blessing of God

 

3. Confession of the full Control of God

 

4. Dependence on the full Direction of God

 

5. Encounter of the full Experience of God

 

6. Focus on the full Friendship of God

 

An altar always represents where you were when you encountered God. But it also always represents where you are when you take the next step of your journey.

 

III. IT’S TIME TO CHOOSE

 

From there he went on toward the hills east of Bethel and pitched his tent, with Bethel on the west and Ai on the east. There he built an altar to the LORD and called on the name of the LORD. (Gen 12:8)

 

A. Where Will You Build Your Altar?

1. Ai – “trash dump”

 

2. Bethel – “house of God” or “presence of God”.

 

3. And Abraham “called on the name of the LORD.”

 

 

 

B. You Are At A Crossroads In Your Life

1. You can choose “Ai” or “Bethel.”

 

2. To not choose, is to choose against the presence of God in your life.

 

3. God has a plan…a destiny for your life. And you are, as was Abraham, parked

between Ai and Bethel. A trashed life or the presence of God. What’ll it be?

 

______ NEXT WEEK: “I Do! I Mean I Don’t!” Gen 12:9-20