‘And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing.’ Genesis 12:2
SUGGESTED FURTHER READING: Colossians 2:1–15
I will bless thee. Here we say, Whoso the Lord blesses shall be blessed. To this purpose the touching petition of Jabez—O that thou wouldst bless me indeed [1 Chronicles 4:10], for thou only art able. For the sum of this blessing see Genesis 15:1—I will preserve thee from all evil and satisfy thee with all good. How safe are they who have the Almighty for their defence; how rich who have the all-sufficient God for their portion. Thus it is with all his people. Then why fear, or why complain? Sure they may be willing to leave the world to those who have no God.
And make thy name great. Abraham’s name has been recorded with honour—and there is an honour to all his people. What is it that gives people a great name in the world?
(i) A noble descent. But the lowliest believer is of more honourable birth than the greatest king, if not partaker of grace. He is born from above, born of God—sons and daughters of the Lord Almighty.
(ii) Great possessions. Here likewise they have the advantage. They are joint heirs of Christ and all things are theirs.
(iii) Great actions. Thus captains and warriors who are skilful and successful in destroying mankind, are renowned. But the believer is engaged in a more important and difficult warfare and by the power of grace he overcomes the devil, the world and himself. He that ruleth his spirit is greater than he who taketh a city (Proverbs 16:32). We have in Hebrews 11 a specimen of the mighty acts of faith, and each believer’s exploits shall at last be made known before angels and men. Then their name shall be great indeed, though now by an unbelieving world cast out as evil (Daniel 11:32).
FOR MEDITATION: ‘Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade—kept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time’ (1 Peter 1:3–5, NIV).
SERMON SERIES: GENESIS, NO. 23 [2/3], GENESIS 12:2