Our Ultimate Destination

Observations as I follow God through the Chronological Bible

Genesis 17[1]

In God’s fifth appearance to Abram, he opened the conversation rebuking Abram for the attempt to fulfill God’s purpose with a human plan. This is the first time scripture records Abram “fell facedown”[2] in God’s presence. Was Abram frightened by the rebuke or had he finally learned to reverence God’s presence? There is no way to know for sure, but one thing is certain. The long wait to obtain the son God promised was near its end. Before God fulfilled his promise to give Abram a son by Sarai, he clearly defined the responsibilities of each person by saying “As for me”, “As for you”, and “As for Sarai.”[3]

From this point on, Abram will be called Abraham. People from many nations will call him father. These people will establish nations and some of them will become kings. The covenant between God, Abraham and the seed the promises were made to (Jesus) is everlasting. The land wherein Abraham lived in as a foreigner would be given to them as an everlasting possession. The God who created all things will be their God.

As for Abraham, every male must be circumcised as a sign of the covenant God made with him. God included in his covenant those born into Abraham’s family and those who became a part of the family by other means. He also put the sign of the covenant, circumcision, in a private place for his eyes only.

As for Sarai, she will be called Sarah. God’s blessings will rest upon her and she will give birth to a son. Nations and kings will come from her as well.

Land on earth, nations, kings and a sign for God’s eyes only does not sound like the gospel I’ve been taught that promises a wonderful life in heaven. I’ve heard sermons about our hearts being circumcised. I’ve been taught that God has made us a nation of kings and priest, but what about the land on earth? If Christ redeemed us “in order that the blessing given to Abraham might come to the Gentiles through Christ Jesus,”[4] our ultimate destination is not some place above the stars, but becoming an eternal nation on earth.

[1] All scripture quotes are from the NIV Bible unless otherwise noted.

[2] Genesis 17:3

[3] Genesis 17:4, 9, 15

[4] Galatians 3:14

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