Abraham - 31 Days of the Christmas Story from Genesis to John

Day 2 – God chooses Abraham to begin a nation.

Abraham - 31 Days of the Christmas Story from Genesis to John

Two thousand years have now passed between the time of Adam and Eve and when Abraham first arrives on the scene. That is a long time from the first prophecy given in Genesis 3:15. God was surely patient! Almost everything we know about these first 2000 years of humanity is recorded in the first eleven chapters of Genesis. While God does not give us all the details of what occurred and why, there are some very remarkable people and events that occur during this time.

Genesis 5 records the genealogy starting with Adam. Adam lived 930 years. His descendant, Enoch, the father of Methuselah, walked with God and lasted 365 years until “he was no longer there”. He never died but was taken up by God. Methuselah, the oldest man, lived 969 years. But after Methuselah’s time, the world was significantly changed forever. It had become extremely evil and violent, and there was only one righteous man left – Noah, and his family. They were saved by God from the Great Flood which wiped out all the evil and started humanity over again. Life spans were decreased, and the world and climate changed. Some 700 years after this event, the people tried to build a monument to their own greatness (calling themselves gods), and worshiping creation instead of the Creator. So God scattered the people into different groups by separating their languages, and this became the beginning of different nations.

By the time Abraham had arrived, around 2000 BC, he was living a life of luxury in the city of Ur, now modern-day Iraq. The culture had advanced extremely well since the years after the flood and beginning of nations. The people were advanced in the areas of arts and sciences and had been writing for about 1000 years. Their standard of living was high, with the average middle-class home having 10-20 rooms and over 2000 square feet.[1] But God called Abraham out of this life of luxury to lead a nation who would preserve and carry God’s story forward through time to all nations. God was ready to begin the prophecy stated in Genesis 3:15. Abraham left his former life behind, all for his faith and obedience to God, and the first covenant between God and His people was created. This changed everything. It changed the history of people forever, and religion as we know it today was first established.

This is the second prophecy, the Abrahamic Covenant:

Genesis 12:1-3
Go out from your land,
your relatives, and your father’s house
to the land that I will show you.
I will make you into a great nation,
I will bless you,
I will make your name great,
and you will be a blessing.
I will bless those who bless you,
I will curse those who treat you with contempt,
and all the peoples on earth
will be blessed through you.

God promised three blessings to Abraham: land, a great nation, and all people would be blessed through him. We are still living out this first covenant today. The land and nation were fulfilled in the later chapters of Genesis, and the third promise – a blessing to all people – has been fulfilled through Jesus Christ, a descendant from this nation and the One who came for all people.

May you get to know the God of Abraham this Christmas.
He is the One who establishes a covenant promise with His people to never leave or forsake them,
and to be a blessing to all people.

* Merry Christmas *

Christmas candle

[1] Archeology and Bible History, Joseph Free, p. 49

Life and Heart Matters.com

A Christmas Story Devotional: 31 Days of the Christmas Story from Genesis to John

Follow along for the 31 days of December and experience a new and exciting appreciation for the ancient Christmas story we celebrate today. The story of Jesus and the meaning behind the celebration of Christmas is woven throughout the entire Bible – from the beginning of mankind in Genesis to the resurrection of Jesus as told by the apostle John some 4000 years later. 

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About the Author

Sue McCusker is a writer, Bible teacher, and web developer who loves to share the stories of life, hope, and faith she sees around her every day. She has written for Guideposts and  Angels on Earth magazines, and teaches the story of God in women's Bible study.

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