The more you have, the more you have to risk.
God blessed Abram. You might think that would make it easier to follow God. With blessing there is more security. Abram is not totally alone anymore. But once you have something, your choices are often bent towards preserving what you have.
Abram learned his lesson in Egypt and seemed to renew His trust in God (13:4). Then he faced another test. He was very prosperous, as was his nephew, Lot. They have to split up. It might appear that the wise thing would be to use his position (since he’s the oldest) and power (since he’s the strongest) to leverage the situation in the interests of himself and his family. But instead of manipulating the situation, he trusted God to direct and provide for him.
Lot chose the more prosperous area and Abram took what was left. Lot found a hidden danger whereas Abram found unexpected blessings.
Abram understood that God was in control of his life. God understands the reality of your situation far better than you do. He knows the hidden dangers, future changes, and potential risks. We usually lament a closed door, missed opportunity, or a bad break, forgetting that God is in control of them all. He may be at work protecting us from an unseen danger, providing in an unexpected way, or directing the timing.
Living by faith does not remove all the troubles and dangers, but it does shift the responsibility for them. Abram obeyed God and God fought for him. Lot controlled his own destiny and had to defend himself.
Obviously, God physically fought for Abram. 318 men routed the armies of 4 kings. What is not so obvious is the number of times God fought for Abram so that a battle never even occurred. God intervened to protect him from his foolish decisions and from Pharaoh. Instead of falling under the sinful influence of Sodom and Gomorrah, Abram found peace and blessing.
The challenges to our faith don’t stop. Even as God grants victory, the temptation arises to trust someone or something else to provide. We see Abram hold firm in his trust that God would continue what He had started.
Faith requires you to trust God to guide you, defend you and provide for you.
1. What do the accounts of Abram and Pharaoh (Gen. 12:10-20), and Abram and Lot reveal about God’s sovereign protection of His people?
2. Was it foolishness or faith for Abram to allow Lot to choose where he would go?
3. Was it foolishness or faith for Abram to refuse any of the plunder from the battle?
4. Is it more difficult for you to trust God to guide you, protect you or provide for you?