Hall of Faith

Introduction:
Life is a journey and for all of us there are different paths and each path has its own set of twists and turns. One of the important aspects of life is awareness. As we travel down the road of life it is important that we have an awareness of what path we are on, why we are on the path, and where the path is going to lead us. More importantly, do we understand who assigned us to the journey and how did they equip us for our journey? Abraham began a journey which was designed by God. However, it required amazing faith since God told Him to take the journey, but He did not disclose the destination. He did make a great promise to Abraham, but required Abraham to follow His lead without full disclosure of the details for the trip. The long journey would be filled with twists and turns and challenges. All of the aspects of the journey were designed by God to build a resolute faith in Abraham and to instill a sense of worth and significance in who He really was. God has chosen each of us in the same way that He chose Abraham. The path of your journey may not take you as far, but it will be a defined path chosen by God just for you.

Something To Talk About:
Lies and sin sometimes have a pretty big ripple effect. Fearing his wife Sarah would be taken from him, Abraham told her to pose as his sister only. And this is not the first time trouble has come to someone else because of this lie Abraham concocted. This passage can, in some ways, serve as a warning to us. We need to be careful about the life we live as our decisions can, no doubt, have an impact on many other people. It is very rare for a word or deed to impact just the person who says or does it. With that in mind we need to be mindful of the ramifications of the lies we tell because a little lie often has big consequences.

  1. Take a honest inventory of truthfulness: This means taking a fearless personal inventory of when, how and why you are being dishonest. This enables you to catch yourself in the middle of a lie and correcting it, even if it’s embarrassing. Proverbs 14:9 says: “Fools mock at making amends for sin, but goodwill is found among the upright.”
  2. Make an honest evaluation of your gains and losses: This means that you measure what you gain by what you could lose when you lie or tell half-truths. Why you may gain temporarily, you also lose in the character and security departments. Proverbs 13:21 says, “Trouble pursues the sinner, but the righteous are rewarded with good things.”
  3. Love God and pursue a relationship with Him: Psalm 51:6 says, “Behold, you delight in truth in the inward being, and you teach me wisdom in the secret heart.” God created us to be in a love relationship with Him. God desires to be in a personal, loving relationship with you. God pours out His love to us. He created us and is concerned with our hearts.
  4. Practice Honesty: Honesty is an important value of a Christian. Proverbs 4:24-26 reads, “Put away from you crooked speech, and put devious talk far from you. Let your eyes look directly forward, and your gaze be straight before you. Ponder the path of your feet; then all your ways will be sure.” Think about that passage for a second. As you are completely honest, “all your ways will be sure.” Choosing to walk the narrow path of honesty, although it takes practice, will eliminate the many possible avenues of dishonesty.

Questions:

  1. How would you rate your level of faith at this point?
  2. Do you sense God’s love on a regular basis? Or sporadically?
  3. How big do you think lying is in our culture? Are there times when it is okay to lie? How about half-truths? Do you believe that lies have no legs and requires other lies to support it?
  4. Is it necessary to deal with lies in your life? How do you deal with lies?
  5. Proverbs 26:28 says, “A lying tongue hates its victims, and a flattering mouth works ruin.” What does that mean to our daily lives?

Take One Thing Home with You
In Abraham’s time, there were people who concocted false superstitions to explain the unexplainable. Powerful kings claimed to be gods, building massive pyramids to achieve immortality. Virtually no one believed in God. Yet it was out of this godless existence that God chose one man, Abraham, and called him to a life of faith and relationship with the one true God. The apostle Paul said in Galatians 3:7 “Understand, then, that those who have faith are children of Abraham.” James 2:23 adds, “and the Scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness”—and he was called a friend of God.” To this day, billions of people trace their physical or spiritual ancestry back to him. His story is preserved for us in the Book of Genesis, and it teaches us much of what we need to know about the life of faith.

Abraham’s story is our story. Like this great man of faith, we have been called on a spiritual journey. Wherever God led, Abraham followed; whenever God promised, he believed. When tested, Abraham trusted, and as he was blessed, he shared that blessing with others. And like us, there were times when he failed, when his flaws rose to the surface. At times he succumbed to weakness and let his flaws lead him astray, yet ultimately God rewarded his faith and called him “a friend of God.”

What is said of Abraham can be said of us, too, if we choose to be like him. Romans 4:19-21 says about Abraham: “He did not weaken in faith when he considered his own body, which was as good as dead (since he was about a hundred years old), or when he considered the barrenness of Sarah’s womb. No unbelief made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised.” The question is are we fully convinced that God is able to do whatever He promises. The life of Abraham shows us what it means to hope in places that seem hopeless, to plunge into the promises of God and live by faith, ready and assured that God will surely do what he says he will do.