by Heather

Genesis 15:1-6 After these things the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision: “Fear not, Abram, I am your shield; your reward shall be very great.” 2 But Abram said, “O Lord God, what will you give me, for I continue childless, and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus?” 3 And Abram said, “Behold, you have given me no offspring, and a member of my household will be my heir.” 4 And behold, the word of the Lord came to him: “This man shall not be your heir; your very own son shall be your heir.” 5 And he brought him outside and said, “Look toward heaven, and number the stars, if you are able to number them.” Then he said to him, “So shall your offspring be.” 6  And he believed the Lord, and he counted it to him as righteousness.

My bible’s commentary focuses on v 6 and I would like to share it with you.

Abraham’s trusting faith in God and his promise is the pattern for all who walk with the Lord. The apostle Paul quotes this verse as he insists on the primacy of faith in God’s promise as the basis of salvation (Rom 4:1-8; Gal 3:15-18).  This promise to Abraham was given many years before the giving of the law (Gal. 3:15-18).  Divine promise is therefore the prior and larger category within which human law-keeping is subsumed (Gal. 3:17) Faith in God’s promise, not human obedience, defines the fate of all who seek his salvation.

The key issue here, as Paul makes clear, is nothing less then justification: how is a sinner put right with a holy and righteous God?  God justifies Abraham and all who come to him by faith (Gal. 3:6-9).  The law witnesses against us that we are sinners and that all who break the law are under God’s curse (Gal. 3:13).  The law could not give righteousness or life because no one could perfectly keep its standards before a holy God (Gal. 2:14-16), but Christ has carried the penalty (the curse) of the law in order to redeem us (Gal. 3:13: see Deut 21:23) Those who trust in Christ for their justification are ushered into the family of God and become the happy beneficiaries of God’s fatherly favor.

The circumstances of life frequently tempt us to doubt God’s goodness.  Like Abram in his childlessness, our lives often seem to be spinning out of control.  Relationships, work, sickness, anxiety–there is much that threatens to overwhelm us.  Above all, our own sin burdens our consciences and weighs us down.  Through it all, the Christian gospel is a message of hope founded on our faith in what God alone can provide: the invincible rock of Christ’s atoning work.  Leaving our moral resumes at home, we are invited into God’s shining favor if we will bring nothing to him but our need, with trust in his ultimate care.  It is Christ-trusting sinners, not the self-trusting “righteous,” who are the children of Abraham and are entitled to all the promises God made to Abraham. (Mark 2:17, Luke 19:10, Gal 3:26-29)

I used to stress over everything.  During the years of stress, I did not think about the fact, that because I did not release it to God, I was showing a lack of trust.  When I think of it in that sense, it really hits hard, because I have such a deep love for our Lord.  In more recent years, I have shown more trust in Him pertaining to most of my own personal matters, but I still tend to be slow at turning over to Him the stress I feel over the things others are going through.  I am doing my best to show total trust in God during those times too.  Turning it all over to Him in prayer and building strength to do that by listening to Him through my bible reading.

One thing that used to stress me to the max, was politics.  I have totally turned that stress over to God.  That doesn’t mean I’m not interested in what is going on and doesn’t mean I don’t care about our country and the elections.  I try to keep up on news and I do care about who is elected to office, but the difference now is, I am not letting it stress me out. I am seeking God’s guidance on how to vote when we have elections.  God wants us to put our full trust in Him.  When we do, we are being obedient to Him.

Are there any areas of your life that you feel that you have been able to release more of your stress to God? That you are now able to feel the peace of doing so?   Also share any songs and bible verses that help you in this area.

I wish everyone a very blessed day.

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