God calls us to put our faith in Him, and Him alone, to deliver us from all the pressures around us that feel as though they will bring us to our knees (and sometimes they do - intentionally). The quote at the top of the page is in reference to Abraham and the example of faith portrayed through his life. He had faith that God would deliver his promise of a child, that God would provide for his needs as he followed God’s calls to leave his family, and that God would deliver Isaac from death when Abraham was called to take him to the mountain as the sacrifice. This is what God desires from us
The God who delivers is the God who calls us to do impossible and implausible things. The photo for this blog communicates a true principle of God in an obscure way, mainly that God guarantees delivery to those who walk in faith when He promises to deliver them from their circumstances (not necessarily overnight - unless you are talking about Passover, of course). Does God always promise to deliver us from our circumstances, no, not from each circumstance. God does promise us ultimate delivery in eternity by grace through faith in Jesus, whose death and resurrection has overcome the world and the worst circumstances of it.
We have started looking at our summer theme for this year and I want to continue on that idea of REPEAT: “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever” - Hebrews 13:8. We all need to be reminded that God, our God, is a God that repeatedly gives deliverance to those who put their faith in Him.
Jesus is our bench mark of deliverance. He is the exemplar and the ultimate act of God delivering His children from their troubles. Because we know this is true, we sometimes forget all the other instances where God shows Himself to be the same yesterday, today, and forever in His pattern of delivering His children from their troubles. In order to give Jesus that honor of being the ultimate and lasting example of God delivering us from our sins, we are going to look back at God’s continual acts of deliverance over the course of the next few weeks. We’ll start with two this week and move on with two or three each week moving forward.
Adam, Eve and their Children
We all know the story of Adam and Eve in the garden. They had perfection in their grasp, the perfect living arrangements, the perfect relationship with God, and the perfect opportunity to remain without the troubles of the world. And yet, they fell, they failed. God, then, before doing anything else regarding Adam and Eve, makes proclamation of future deliverance.
The Lord God said to the serpent,
“Because you have done this,
cursed are you above all livestock
and above all beasts of the field;
on your belly you shall go,
and dust you shall eat
all the days of your life.
I will put enmity between you and the woman,
and between your offspring and her offspring;
he shall bruise your head,
and you shall bruise his heel.”
We all know the serpent is not just a simple serpent, but a physical representation used to understand God punishing a spiritual being. The very end of these two verses is a communication from God that He will deliver those who have fallen to Satan’s schemes in the garden. It is a promise that mankind will not always be a slave to the worldview and the tricks that Satan set upon them in deceiving Adam and Eve. God promises the deliverance of mankind, even to Adam and Eve, through the work of the one who will bruise or crush the proverbial head of Satan. (Awesome and thorough explanation of this wonderful act of deliverance HERE)
God immediately shows another example of His patience and desire to spare, those who have fallen into sin, from untimely death. He does this in the case of Cain. We know the story of Cain and Abel and I encourage you to read the whole story again in Genesis 4. I want to point out the response of God, to Cain, after Cain has committed the murder of his brother and received the explanation of the punishment God was placing on him:
And the Lord said, “What have you done? The voice of your brother's blood is crying to me from the ground. And now you are cursed from the ground, which has opened its mouth to receive your brother's blood from your hand. When you work the ground, it shall no longer yield to you its strength. You shall be a fugitive and a wanderer on the earth.” Cain said to the Lord, “My punishment is greater than I can bear. Behold, you have driven me today away from the ground, and from your face I shall be hidden. I shall be a fugitive and a wanderer on the earth, and whoever finds me will kill me.” Then the Lord said to him, “Not so! If anyone kills Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him sevenfold.” And the Lord put a mark on Cain, lest any who found him should attack him. Then Cain went away from the presence of the Lord and settled in the land of Nod, east of Eden.
Cain knew his wife, and she conceived and bore Enoch. When he built a city, he called the name of the city after the name of his son, Enoch.
Cain just murdered his brother, after being warned right beforehand by God not to act rashly, and God took extra effort to spare his physical life from those who might seek to take it from him. God put a mark on Cain so that all would know NOT to kill him. God put a mark of protection on Cain (for both Cain and those who might kill him) even though he had killed someone who rightly honored God. God delivered Cain from the hands of those who might try to take his life as Cain took the life of his brother. Reflect on that. The first two stories of sin are clear and grace filled examples of God delivering those who dishonor Him, even those who might be considered His enemy.
This same God is the God that seeks a relationship with you, calls you to work for His Kingdom, and strengthens you to persevere through all things to which He calls you. Take joy and confidence in the fact that the God with whom you have a relationship desires and continues to deliver you from the hardships that lie before you. Have faith, God is fully able to do what He has promised!
Scriptures Use or Referenced:
Common Use Photo: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:God_is_Good_-_panoramio.jpg
Sermon: The Curse on the Serpent Part 2