700 Years Later

On Sunday we began a new series titled 40 Days Of Promise. During this series we will study the life of Abraham and the promises that God made to him.
   The name Abraham אַבְרָהָם means exalted father in Hebrew. 
Abraham is regarded as the father of the Jewish nation. Last week we learned how God appeared to Abraham and asked him to leave everything he had ever known in order to follow God.
Would Abraham go?
Abraham chose to follow God…and this choice became the beginning of a new nation.
Fast-forward 700 years!
700 years later the people of God (now hundreds of thousands in count) gathered together to recommit themselves to God. Joshua, their current leader, reminds the people of how their journey started. It all began with Abraham’s choice.
Joshua said to all the people, “This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: ‘Long ago your ancestors, including Terah the father of Abraham and Nahor, lived beyond the Euphrates River and worshiped other gods. But I took your father Abraham from the land beyond the Euphrates and led him throughout Canaan and gave him many descendants.”
-Joshua 24:2-3

Abraham worshipped other gods in a culture that widely promoted polytheism. God appeared to him and offered him an startling alternative; monotheism.
Worship the one true God.
Put yourself in Abraham’s place. How challenging would this change have been for you?
To go from believing all of your life that there were gods for everything (a god for rain, a god for livestock, a god for health) and then all of the sudden to be presented with a new possibility.
There is only one God, and that God has big plans for you.
Abraham chose to believe. His belief set off a chain reaction. God blessed him with descendants. The families grew and expanded until eventually they became a large nation. Generations later they gather together to remember the original choice that Abraham made.
Abraham chose to follow. Abraham chose to believe.
 700 years later, the ancestors of Abraham have the exact same choice to make. 
Will they continue to follow? Will they continue to believe?
Every new generation needs to make this choice for itself.
Joshua continues his speech…
“So fear the Lord and serve him wholeheartedly. Put away forever the idols your ancestors worshiped when they lived beyond the Euphrates River and in Egypt. Serve the Lord alone. But if you refuse to serve the Lord, then choose today whom you will serve. Would you prefer the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates? Or will it be the gods of the Amorites in whose land you now live? But as for me and my family, we will serve the Lord.”
-Joshua 24:14-15

We have the opportunity to make the same choice.
Will we follow God even when we are not sure where God is leading?
Will we choose to believe in a God that loves us and has big plans for our lives?
May this be our refrain: As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord. 
See you on Sunday as we continue the story of Abraham!
-Pastor David

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