Monday, January 28, 2008

Genesis 18 thoughts

I've been reading through Genesis the last few weeks. To be honest, it started simply as a "Wow, I haven't read Genesis in a long time...LETS DO IT" sort of thing, but holy cow, there's a lot of powerful things in there. The short version of it is: God is awesome, God is faithful, and God is personable. How do all these three come together? I don't quite understand it all, but its pretty sweet. Right now I will briefly touch on Genesis 18.

Here's what happens: Abraham is sitting outside his tent--in the heat of the day by the oaks of Mamre--when the Lord appears to him, not in a vision, but in person. The Lord and two angels, standing near his tent. And lest one thinks that they are simply heavenly phantoms, Abraham runs inside, has Sarah make bread, has a servant kill a calf, and then he feeds them! Can you imagine? The God of the universe as a man, in front of your house, eating your bread, beef, curds, and milk! And Abraham stands to the side and talks with him! I can't fathom it. It would be like me, sitting out in the gazebo east of the Couch dorm, pondering how all my future can possibly work out, when POOF...there HE is. He and two arch-angel fellows, under one of the oaks nearby.

"Hey, buddy, just came by to tell you that you will have a son within a year. Its okay, I have it under control."

(And then He and his accompanying angels walk over the hill to Sodom to destroy the rampantly wicked city. That's a story for a different day, but one no less powerful. Besides, I can't quite fit that into my gazebo analogy.)

When I read this passage, it leapt out at me for two reasons. First, the fact that He, not his angels, would come down to talk with Abraham to tell him that he's watching over the future and remembers his promises, spoke with force to me about who He is. And second, it illustrated for me the wonder of God becoming man. Somehow, when the Lord takes a body to talk to Abraham, it strikes me as fantastical and unbelievable, like a wonderful myth.

I think that we often lose this sense when we think about Jesus. Jesus is, well, Jesus. We talk about him so often that it is easy to lose sight of the profoundness of who he was. Not only did the eternal Lord become man (CRAZY), live with, talk to, and care about people (He's so far beyond creation), he died so that we could live with him forever (he's all-powerful but let us kill him!).

And it gives me great comfort to know that the Lord is watching over my future. Not just that he generally guides it in a good direction. No, that he knows precisely who I will meet, when things will happen, and how events will shape me. Like Sarah in the tent, he knows my thoughts and my inmost doubts, and assures me that he is more than able complete his work. Unbelievably, and beyond hope, he looks down from the heights of heaven and cares about me. And loved me so much that he died for me. And he guides my life as it should be.

1 comment:

Ryan Martin said...

Amen! It seems like people always try to tear apart the new testement for evidence of God's soverignty, and it's there, but just look at the whole Old Testement! The whole thing is a piture of God's plan for his people! Awesome!