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Abraham Faith anchored in God

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Faith Anchored in God

Welcome and announcements

Doxology            “Come Praise Him”

Come praise Him, exalt Him and worship his Name

Today and forever He’s always the same

Come praise Him, our Saviour the Lamb that was slain

Come praise Him and worship: the Lord is his Name.

We praise Him, exalt Him and worship his Name

Today and forever He’s always the same

We praise Him, our Saviour the Lamb that was slain

We praise Him and worship: the Lord is his Name

Call to worship and Greeting

Hymn no 46:        “Praise to the Lord, the Almighty”

Prayer of adoration and Confession of sins

Declaration of pardoning

Hymn no 390:    “Come let us sing of a wonderful love”

Children’s Address

Hymn no 471:     “Seek ye first the Kingdom of God”

Offering and Dedication

While the Offering is taken up, all (remaining seated) sing)  “Father I thank you”

Father I thank you for all you have done

You gave your Son freely for me.

And I praise You for calling me, drawing me near

Out of blindness You caused me to see.

Spirit of life, You are God’s holy fire

You kindled my heart with your blaze

And I know You’re refining me, changing my life

And by faith You’re revealing your ways.

Jesus, I need You as Lord of my life

I give all I have unto You

Lord, I want to come under your heavenly hand

And to praise You in all that I do.

Bible Reading

Old Testament:              Genesis 15

New Testament:             Luke 9:14-27

Song “Bless Thy Word unto our hearts”

Bless Thy Word unto our hearts and glorify Thy name

Bless Thy Word unto our hearts and glorify Thy name

Glorify Thy name, Lord, glorify Thy name

Bless Thy Word unto our hearts and glorify Thy name



When I grew up there were only two makes of cars:  Chevrolets and Fords.  Chevrolets in Australia have the badge of Holdens on them since the early fifties. So the true blue Aussie boy have only one choice out of two cars:  a Ford or a Holden.

Jack picked a Holden.  Why?  Well he believes in them.  Why?  What made him believe in them? Why would he recommend them to you?  First of all, he knows them.  He’s had one for years.  He can speak out of experience.  Secondly, he trusts them.  Why?  Well, he knows them.

There are two elements in faith.

Let’s go to the Heidelberg Catechism written in 1563 in Germany.  The question is:  What is true faith?

True faith is a sure knowledge whereby I accept as true all that God has revealed to us in His Word. At the same time it is a firm confidence that not only to others, but also to me, God has granted forgiveness of sins, everlasting righteousness, and salvation, out of mere grace, only for the sake of Christ's merits. This faith the Holy Spirit works in my heart by the gospel.

To understand the meaning of the dealings of God with Abraham and Abraham’s response to God’s dealings with him, we must understand the context of the chapter.

The focal point of chapter 15 of Genesis is not verse 6:

Abram believed the LORD, and he credited it to him as righteousness.

No, the focal point lies in God’s declaration in verse 1:

‘‘Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your very great reward.”

The word shield here carries the meaning of sovereign or king. God said to Abraham:  I am your King.  You live under my protection.

God also said:  The most precious aspect of your life (reward) is the fact that I am there.

Abraham responded with a complaint:

‘‘O Sovereign LORD, what can you give me since I remain childless and the one who will inherit my estate is Eliezer of Damascus?”  And Abram said, ‘‘You have given me no children; so a servant in my household will be my heir.”

What he says here is basically this:  “Lord I trust You that You have a plan with my life.  But I don’t know how this is going to work out.  You made a promise about my descendants, but I don’t have one single child.  Maybe You meant that my slave will be my heir.”

The Lord took him to the night skies and asked him to count the stars.  He couldn’t.  Then the Lord declared:

‘This man will not be your heir, but a son coming from your own body will be your heir.”  5 He took him outside and said, ‘‘Look up at the heavens and count the stars—if indeed you can count them.” Then he said to him, ‘‘So shall your offspring be.”

Now we hear verse 6:

Abram believed the LORD, and he credited it to him as righteousness.

If this faith Abraham had in God is described as saving faith unto righteousness, it means a lot. It is far more than what we understand under “Well, I hope so.”  With that we actually mean “I am not at all sure what your are talking about.

If I would ask you  “Do you believe in God?”, you would probably say “Yes”. The question now is “Is this enough to be saved?  Will this “Yes” be accredited as righteousness?  In other words “Does your faith rest in Jesus Christ who is your Saviour and Redeemer?

What we saw happening in the life of Abraham in Genesis 15 is described in the WCF Chapter 14:

The grace of faith, whereby Abraham was enabled to believe that he was saved, was the work of the Spirit of Christ in his heart;

In our lives the ministry of the Word ordinarily brings about this saving faith.  This faith is also increased and strengthened by the administration of the sacraments, and by prayer.

Abraham asked the Lord for a sign.  “O Sovereign LORD, how can I know that I will gain possession of it?”

The Lord made a covenant with him.  An agreement.  How?  Through blood and the sacrifice of animals.

If you have this saving faith in you, only trusting the the Lord Jesus for your salvation, you will see the following happen.

The Christian believes that whatesoever is revealed in the Word is true, for the authority of God himself speaking therein;

The Christian acts upon that Word:  he is obedient to the commands contained in the Word; he trembles at the threats in the Bible; he embraces the promises of God for this life, and the life to come.

The primary acts of saving faith are, accepting, receiving, and resting upon Christ alone for justification, sanctification, and eternal life, by virtue of the covenant of grace.

Are you there?  In other words “Do you have a saving faith?”

Did Abraham always believe God?  No not always.  God taught him to believe.  To trust.  To know that God was the One who do what he promises. Abraham’s faith grew and developed.  But he trusted God.

This faith is different in degrees, weak or strong; may be often and many ways assailed and weakened, but gets the victory; growing up in many to the attainment of a full assurance through Christ, who is both the author and finisher of our faith.


If I ask you this morning “Do you have a saving faith”, what will your answer be?  If you say you have saving faith, is it evident in you only trusting Jesus Christ for your salvation, justification and sanctification? In other words: are you sure there is not trust in your own attempts to make an impression on God so that will have to save you on account of self-righteousness?

Further:  is your faith made up of knowledge and trust?  Do you walk with God to know Him in prayer?  Do you study his Word to take his promises for the truth?  Do you walk in obedience to the Word?

If that is the case, rest assured, it is a faith anchored in God.  It is pleasing in God’s sight. 


Prayer of Intercession

Hymn no 410:    “ I am trusting You, Lord Jesus”

Threefold “Amen”

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