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Genesis 35:1 - Then God said to Jacob, “Go up to Bethel and settle there, and build an altar there to God, who appeared to you when you were fleeing from your brother Esau.” _____________________________________________⠀
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Years had passed - over 20 years - since Jacob had met God at Bethel. At their first meeting, Jacob was on the run from his brother, Esau. Deception and murderous threats were swirling about the family. Since that time, more deception, lies and even murder had taken place. A time of refocus and renewed calling was definitely needed. _______________________________________________⠀
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God called Jacob back to Bethel - the place of the God-encounter, the place of remembrance. God wanted this meeting. He knew it was needed for the good of the coming generations. ______________________________________⠀
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Jacob responded appropriately and prepared his family for the meeting. He instructed them to get rid of the foreign gods they had picked up on the way. It’s interesting that they already had so much idolatry in their midst at this point. ______________________________________⠀
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God then came to Jacob and reiterated the promises he spoke to Abraham and Isaac. And he also gave Jacob something new - a new name. This was a stamp of hope for the future… a daily reminder that God keeps his promises. _______________________________________________⠀
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Go back to the time when you clearly heard God’s voice or sensed his direction in your life. Can you remember? What did he say? Prepare yourself to hear him again. Get rid of impurity or any “foreign” influences that would seek to tarnish God’s character in your life. ________________________________________________⠀
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God wants to speak his promises again over your life. He is calling you to come back and listen. Take time to do this now. __________________________________________⠀
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#listen #worship #altar #bethel #bible #biblestudy #dailydevotional #faith #promises #gospel #god #faithful #truth #purity #meetgod #quiettime
Genesis 29:30-32 - Jacob lay with Rachel also, and he loved Rachel more than Leah. And he worked for Laban another seven years. When the Lord saw that Leah was not loved, he opened her womb, but Rachel was barren. Leah became pregnant and gave birth to a son. She named him Reuben, for she said, “It is because the Lord has seen my misery. Surely my husband will love me now.” __________________________________________________⠀
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Do you remember who Jacob was? He was the one favored by his mother, Rebekah. But his father, Isaac, favored brother Esau. Jacob struggled for identity and his father's love. He went so far as to steal a blessing from his father. He grew up in the shadow of his favored brother. And Jacob passed on this lack of love to his family. _______________________________________________⠀
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After marrying both sisters, Jacob obviously favored one over the other. He set in motion a great competition for affection and children between his wives. Deep insecurity prevailed in his home. This came out in much dissension and quarreling. And Jacob fed this fire of insecurity because of his own wound that was never healed. ________________________________________________⠀
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Jacob played this out further when his boys grew up. He obviously favored Joseph over his brothers - so much so that they desired to kill Joseph. Jacob seemed almost oblivious to all this. Insecurity and relational competition was the norm. _______________________________________⠀
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When the wounds of an earthly father are not healed by the heavenly Father, they will spread an infection into the next generation. Do you have wounds from your earthly father? Perhaps wounds of anger or neglect? Your heavenly Father is perfectly kind, affectionate, just and true. He is actually the One you need… the One you have been longing for. ______________________________________⠀
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Go to your Father with your wounds. Acknowledge them. Ask Him for healing. Do not allow these wounds to be left unhealed. Otherwise, they necessarily will spread infection into the next generation. _________________________________________⠀
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#father #healing #fatherheart #bible #biblestudy #jacob #truth
Genesis 29:25
When morning came, there was Leah! So Jacob said to Laban, “What is this you have done to me? I served you for Rachel, didn’t I? Why have you deceived me?” ______________________________
What goes around comes around. The deceiver got deceived. Jacob, who stole the birthright with deception, was deceived into marrying the older sister, Leah. God does not deceive, nor does he condone deception. In fact, he hates lying. Proverbs 6:16-19 But, it is interesting that lying makes you vulnerable to a world of lies. _____________________________

Jacob worked very hard to get the woman he loved. Isaac also worked very hard, amassing great wealth to pass onto his oldest son, Esau, the one he loved.  Deception begets deception. Sin has consequences. Without breaking the line of deceit through repentance, it will grow and multiply. This issue of deceit even extended into Jacob's sons. They lied to their father about the death of his favorite son, Joseph. How cruel! _____________________________

Small lies become bigger lies. It is easy to condone little "white lies", which then  become dark secrets. Are there any areas of deception that you have allowed to remain in your life? Perhaps, you haven’t been completely truthful in your relationships. You are known for the most part. But could there be secrets that you hold onto? _____________________________

Lying to gain position or possessions is quite tempting. Jacob gave into this temptation and was later bitten by the same thing. Have you ever boosted your reputation through deception? Have you ever grasped for power in relationships by “name or title dropping?” _______________________________

Don’t allow slight shades of deception to come from you. Choose always to be a person of truth. ______________________________
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#truth #bible #honesty #biblestudy #scripture #faith #gospel #light #dailydevotional #wisdom #inspiration #daily #jesus #god
Genesis 28:16-17 - When Jacob awoke from his sleep, he thought, “Surely the Lord is in this place, and I was not aware of it.” He was afraid and said, “How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God; this is the gate of heaven.” _________________________________________⠀
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Is it possible that we can find ourselves in a "thin place" - a place where heaven is touching earth - and not know it? What a wonderful thought - that we could be in a place of angels ascending and descending, a place where the separation between heaven and earth is so thin that they almost seem one. _________________________________________⠀
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It is in this thin place that revelation from God is easy to access. Words from his throne flow freely. In this place you are able to perceive God's heart for the nations and your role in his plan. The thin place brings great refreshment, because the Lord's presence is palpable. ________________________________________ ⠀
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Moses also experienced this close connection between heaven and earth. And he wanted more. He called out to a God, "Now show me your glory." Exodus 33:18 For Jacob, the revelation of the thin place came in his dream. And he was surprised by the notion that the Lord was in that place, and he previously had not realized it. _____________________________________________⠀
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How often do we walk about our day with no thought of the Lord's presence? Too often, perhaps. There is much activity in the heavenly realms going on right now. This activity is meant to impact the earth. It is our job, however, to "pull down" the activity of heaven onto this earth. Matthew 16:19 What a privilege! _____________________________________________________⠀
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When you look for, pray for and call out for the visible manifestation of heaven (God’s will and ways) on earth, you will see and experience it. You don’t have to miss it, as a Jacob almost did. The "thin place" could be right where you are seated in this moment. Ask God to show you where he is and what he is doing. Be a part of opening up another gate of heaven where you live. ________________________________________________⠀
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#thinplace #heaven #dailydevotional
Genesis 25:32 - "Look, I am about to die," Esau said. "What good is the birthright to me?" ________________________________________________________⠀
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Two wrongs don’t make a right. Jacob, the deceiver, and Esau, the despiser - both were in the wrong. Both caused pain and heartache to their families and the heart of God. Though God would have been grieved over their relational breakdown, he still kept the line of promise intact (the line of Jesus). ____________________________________________________⠀
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Someone might say that Jacob's sin of deception was predestined. But, do not be fooled. “God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; but each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed.” James 1:13-14 Jacob had a very different response to God than his grandfather, Abraham, had. _________________________________________________⠀
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Abraham obediently laid his son, Isaac, upon the altar. He let go of his promised inheritance at God's command (which God gave back to him). Jacob, on the other hand, seized inheritance that was not his to take. Only God gives and takes away inheritance. ________________________________________________________⠀
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In a move of great mercy, God continued working with the rebellious decisions of both Jacob and Esau. He did not remove his presence or his promise from the family. They treated the promise of God as if it was a temporary stash of gold and silver. They completely missed the point of God's blessing on generations. ______________________________________________________⠀
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Do not diminish God's promises in your life to be a simple temporary fix of health or wealth. Also, do not trade them in for a sinful, false comfort. Remember the big picture of what God is doing in your life. He is building a blessing in your life that will impact generations and nations. _______________________________________________⠀
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Your obedience to God's voice right now will bring his promise and blessing into the lives of many that follow you. ___________________________________________________⠀
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#obeygod #blessing #inheritance #promiseofgod #promises #bible #biblestudy #scripture
Genesis 19:15 - With the coming of dawn, the angels urged Lot, saying, “Hurry! Take your wife and your two daughters who are here, or you will be swept away when the city is punished.” ___________________________________⠀
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"Run and don't look back." That's what the angels told Lot and his family. Otherwise, they would be swept away in the destruction of the city. Lot and his daughters ran. Lot's wife looked back and was destroyed with the city. _____________________________________⠀
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What was the hurry? Why did Lot's family have to run and not even cast a backwards glance at their home? They had placed themselves in the center of wickedness. They chose to be a friend of the world… to be a close companion of rebellion. This same wickedness was about to swallow them up. It was chasing them. ______________________________________⠀
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The longing gaze, the lingering thought and the indecisive pause when it comes to evil brings destruction to our doorstep. Sin in our own lives must not be dealt with tenderly. It should be recognized, then run from. This is repentance - turning from sin and turning to Christ. _____________________________________⠀
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Lot chose to set up his home near Sodom and then ended up living right in the middle of the city. He had become numb to the evil around him. He needed angels to nearly force him to run from destruction. __________________________________⠀
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Are there any areas of sin in your life that you hang around? Perhaps you have distanced yourself from either the sin or sinful people. But, you are never that far away. You haven't run away yet. _____________________________________⠀
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Maybe you have started to run away from sinful choices. But, you opt to look back. You say that the pull of your old ways and the old friends are too strong. Do you realize that the time of no more chances quickly approaches? Destruction could sweep you up, if you put yourself in that position. _____________________________________⠀
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So, hurry… run and don't look back. A new life awaits. _____________________________________⠀
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#run #fleesin #repentance #gospel #goodgod #god #jesus #salvation #faith #trust
Genesis 18:22⠀
The men turned away and went toward Sodom, but Abraham remained standing before the Lord. ________________________________⠀
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The Lord spoke out his intent to observe Sodom and bring destruction if necessary. He spoke this out to his two friends (perhaps angels) in front of Abraham. He wanted Abraham to hear his sorrow and possible plans for Sodom. Why? The Lord wanted to interact with Abraham over the future of a city. ____________________________________⠀
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Abraham understood his role as an intercessor and remained standing before the Lord. He began to “bargain” with the Lord by asking for his mercy if there were a certain number of righteous people in the wicked city of Sodom. The Lord heard Abraham and worked with him, agreeing to his proposal. __________________________________⠀
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It didn’t stop there. Abraham continued to intercede for Sodom by asking for greater levels of mercy. Each time, the Lord agreed. He worked with Abraham. ____________________________________⠀
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God could just leave you out of the picture and do everything on his own. He definitely is strong enough. But, from the beginning of time, he has always chosen to partner with his image-bearers (people) to make his will happen on earth. ______________________________________⠀
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What a privilege! What an opportunity! That God would invite you to "stand before him" and intercede on behalf of others is an awesome truth. Would you take up your role today and partner with God? _____________________________________⠀
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How? 1) Ask him to reveal to you his heart for a person, community or city. 2) When you catch an impression or a sense of God's burden for a person or place, then ask God how to pray. 3) Now speak back to God what he is showing you about a certain situation. Don't give up easily. Keep standing before the Lord. Ask for his mercy to be poured out. Cut off the works of the enemy in Jesus' name. ______________________________________⠀
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Partner with God today! __________________________________________⠀
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#intercession #abraham #bible #biblestudy #scripture #god #mercy #salvation #faith #dailydevotional
Genesis 16:1-2 - Now Sarai, Abram’s wife, had borne him no children. But she had an Egyptian maidservant named Hagar; so she said to Abram, “The Lord has kept me from having children. Go, sleep with my maidservant; perhaps I can build a family through her.” Abram agreed to what Sarai said. ______________________________________________⠀
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God has spoken, but you have not yet seen the fulfilment of the promise. Do you get tired in the waiting? __________________________________________________⠀
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Perhaps there are dreams or visions that God has given to you, but it hasn’t happened yet. You wonder if you have heard right. You wonder if there is something more you should be doing. ______________________________________________⠀
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First, you need to ensure that God has indeed spoken to you. Get confirmation through his Word and through trusted Christian friends. Spend some more time waiting on God in prayer and worship. Clarity will come. ______________________________________________⠀
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Abram knew clearly that God had spoken about offspring coming from his own body. But it hadn’t happened. And he and Sarai were getting old! Perhaps God needed some help in fulfilling the promise. _____________________________________________⠀
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Do you ever feel like you need to help God in making a dream or vision come true? In other words, when you’re tired of waiting, do you create your own solutions or timeline? You settle for your own control of the situation and end up with second-best, or worse - disaster. ______________________________________________________⠀
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God was merciful and kept persevering with Abram and Sarai. For their own baby was still to come - Isaac. Even though Sarai laughed at the notion of God's promise being fulfilled at her age of 90, God remained faithful. ___________________________________________________⠀
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Wait for God's word AND God's timing. It is always best. ____________________________________________________⠀
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#godstiming #god #abraham #promise #godspromises #bible #bibleverse #dailydevotion #daily #inspiration #wait #wisdom #bestill #devotional #scripture #faith #gospel #truth #jesus #biblestudy
Genesis 15:1 - After this, the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision: “Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your very great reward.” __________________________________________________⠀
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If we work hard, we expect a good paycheck. If we selflessly give of ourselves, we expect at least a heartfelt thank-you. We expect a reward for our effort. ______________________________________________⠀
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God had already promised Abram many things - lots of offspring and lots of land. And he was about to confirm these promises to Abram. But just before rehearsing his covenant again with Abram, God wanted to make something very clear. He said to Abram, "I am your very great reward." ______________________________________________⠀
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Often the promise becomes much bigger than the Promise-Giver. God was reminding Abram of this point. At the start and the finish, He is to be our reward. ______________________________________________⠀
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God refuses to be relegated to a giant candy machine in the sky. We come to him with our coins (our prayers) when we need some candy (some favors). After getting what we need, we walk away temporarily satisfied until the next pressing need for more candy comes upon us. ________________________________________________⠀
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God alone satisfies. Relationship with him is the reward. Inside a relationship with God come the joys of fulfilled promises. And that is very satisfying! But his fulfilled promises are not the final reward.  He is. ______________________________________________⠀
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Today, focus yourself on the Giver more than his gifts. Seek him first, and all the needed things will be added to you. Matthew 6:33 ______________________________________________⠀
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#reward #gifts #promises #god #bible #bibleverse #abraham #scripture #dailydevotion #daily #wisdom #inspiration #gospel #grace #faith #truth
Genesis 14:14 - When Abram heard that his relative had been taken captive, he called out the 318 trained men born in his household and went in pursuit as far as Dan. ____________________________________⠀
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Remember how Lot and his family decided to pitch their tents "near" Sodom. Well, by this time, they were living "in" Sodom. Remember the wickedness of Sodom that came to God's attention in Genesis 18:21? Yes, it was this city that Lot chose to live in. _________________________________⠀
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Patterns of wickedness make a city ripe for plunder and ready for destruction. And this is what happened to Sodom. Four kings seized all the goods and people of Sodom in one swift move. Lot was taken with them. ____________________________________⠀
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Though you could say that Sodom's destruction was deserved, God had great mercy. He sent Abram and 318 family members to rescue ALL the people of Sodom. ___________________________________⠀
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God is rich in mercy. Ephesians 2:4 He gives us many chances to turn and seek him. Romans 2:4 Do you take advantage of his mercy and repent from sin? Or do you take advantage of his mercy and continue living in the midst of sin? ___________________________________⠀
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Lot chose to remain right in the middle of sin, even after his dramatic rescue. And we read about the ultimate destruction of Sodom in Genesis 19. Remember - God was incredibly merciful to Lot and Sodom. _______________________________________⠀
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Think of how God has shown great mercy to you. Do not treat his mercy with contempt. Draw close to him in thanksgiving. _____________________________________⠀
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#mercy #grace #love #Bible #Biblestudy #dailydevotion #scripture #daily #wisdom #inspiration #gospel #rescue #salvation #dailybibleverse #jesus
Genesis 13:12 - Abram lived in the land of Canaan, while Lot lived among the cities of the plain and pitched his tents near Sodom. ____________________________________________⠀
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Abram gave his nephew, Lot, the pick of the land. He had a choice to go anywhere. And he chose to pitch his tents near Sodom. __________________________________________⠀
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The land near Sodom looked so good. It was near the fertile Jordan valley. The possibilities of the multiplication of riches and power were real. The possibility of Sodom's wickedness affecting Lot and his family was also real. But, apparently, Lot did not mind. _________________________________________⠀
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Just before Sodom was destroyed, we read that Lot and his family were fully integrated into the city of Sodom. Genesis 19:1 He went from “pitching his tents nearby" to living right in the middle of the wicked city. Lot even took on the wicked ways of the city by offering his daughters to men of the city who would abuse them. Genesis 19:8 _____________________________________________⠀
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If you choose to live near rebellion, you will soon get drawn in. Constant exposure to wickedness will cause a hardening of heart and even an attraction to violence and sexual immorality. Where do you choose to pitch your tent? ______________________________________________⠀
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Do you live near wickedness in the music you listen to, movies you watch or websites you surf? Do the friends you choose influence you toward God's ways or rebelling against him. Choosing to constantly expose yourself or live among wickedness will have a devastating effect on your life. _______________________________________________⠀
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It’s time to pack up your tents if you’re living near Sodom. Flee wickedness. You have a choice of where to pitch your tents. Choose wisely. _______________________________________________⠀
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#hatesin #lovegod #bible #scripture #genesis #abraham #dailybible #daily #biblestudy #truth #repentance #forgiveness #gospel #salvation #gospel #faith
Genesis 12:13 - Say you are my sister, so that I will be treated well for your sake and my life will be spared because of you.” ____________________________________________⠀
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Psalms 105:42 - For he remembered his holy promise given to his servant Abraham. ____________________________________________⠀
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You might forget what God has spoken to you. You might forget his promises. But he never does… __________________________________________⠀
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Earlier in Genesis 12, God had promised to Abraham that he would have many children, and the nations of the earth would be blessed through his family line. Now, just a little while later, Abraham was unwittingly sabotaging God's promise. To protect his own skin, he offered up his wife to the Egyptian pharaoh. Did Abraham not realize that the God who promised great blessing would also be faithful to protect his family? ________________________________________⠀
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We are quick to walk by sight, not by faith. Even though God has made promises to us, we most often operate on the basis of what we see and experience around us. Our tendency to make knee-jerk responses to threatening situations is strong. ____________________________________________⠀
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Abraham almost undermined the promise of God (the nations of the earth being blessed through the coming of Jesus) through his fearful knee-jerk reaction. In this moment he made a human decision to control the situation. It seemed right. But it could have had disastrous implications. ___________________________________________⠀
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Praise God that he never forgets his promises to us… even when we unknowingly seek to undermine them through our fear and lack of faith. "Even when we are faithless, he remains faithful, for he cannot disown himself." 2 Timothy 2:13 __________________________________________⠀
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You never have to walk in fear and control. Make a conscious effort to remember God's promises. Speak them out. Even when your physical circumstances seem threatening, determine to hold onto what God has said. ______________________________________________⠀
#promise #promisesofgod #devotional #bible #bibleverse #abraham #daily #dailydevotional #scripture #faith #grace #god #jesus