Eternity Daily Bible Study
The Life Of Abraham
Verses: Genesis 22:15-24
Topic: The Great Blessing
Date: 17th April 2006
Genesis 22:15-24 MKJV And the Angel of Jehovah called to Abraham out of the heavens the second time, (16) and said, I have sworn by Myself, says Jehovah; because you have done this thing, and have not withheld your son, your only one; (17) that in blessing I will bless you, and in multiplying I will multiply your seed like the stars of the heavens, and as the sand which is upon the seashore. And your Seed shall possess the gate of His enemies. (18) And in your Seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice. (19) Abraham returned to his young men, and they rose up and went together to Beer-sheba. And Abraham lived at Beer-sheba. (20) And it happened after these things that it was told Abraham, saying, Behold Milcah! She also has borne children to your brother Nahor: (21) Huz his first-born, and Buz his brother, and Kemuel the father of Aram, (22) and Chesed, and Hazo, and Pildash, and Jidlaph, and Bethuel. (23) And Bethuel fathered Rebekah. These eight Milcah bore to Nahor, Abraham's brother. (24) And his concubine, named Reumah, she also bore Tebah, and Gaham, and Thahash, and Maachah.
Upon Abraham's obedience in the matter of Isaac, God releases a might blessing. This blessing of Abraham has come upon all who are in Christ (see Galatians 3) and belongs to those who, like Abraham, are of faith:
Galatians 3:6-9 MKJV Even as Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him for righteousness. (7) Therefore know that those of faith, these are the sons of Abraham. (8) And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the nations through faith, preached the gospel before to Abraham, saying, "In you shall all nations be blessed." (9) So then those of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.
Galatians 3:29 MKJV And if you are Christ's, then you are Abraham's seed and heirs according to the promise.
Ephesians 1:3 MKJV Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenlies in Christ;
above three verses tell us that those who are of faith, and thus in Christ,
a) sons of Abraham
b) blessed with faithful Abraham
c) Abraham's seed
d) heirs according to promise e
e) blessed with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms.
So the mighty blessings that came upon Abraham at the “sacrifice of Isaac” are ours, not through our sacrificing, but through the sacrifice of Christ upon the cross, which was a “once-for-all-time” sacrifice. So let us look at the components of this might blessing:
that in blessing I will bless you: Blessing is God's favor on all that a person does. It is effortless increase and easy success in life. It is also the blessing of knowing God and having our sins forgiven and being people who God will not hold anything against. The Christian is in God's favor and in the very center of His love.
and in multiplying I will multiply your seed like the stars of the heavens, and as the sand which is upon the seashore: Multiplying is unlimited exponential non-linear expansion, it is seeing success upon success, it is super-abounding blessing, it is extending one's boundaries. It means that God's work in our life, and through our life, can be virtually infinite and that one person can have great influence if God is with them. It also is the paradigm for the mustard-seed expansion of the Kingdom.
And your Seed shall possess the gate of His enemies: This primarily refers to Christ and to the Church for “the gates of Hell shall not prevail against it” (Matthew 16:18). This is the equivalent of the blessing of “dominion” in Genesis and means that the Church has authority to conquer evil. This blessing is the “new section” in the Abrahamic covenant. Dominion is what was uniquely won through Abraham's extreme obedience. Christ of course won dominion over evil by His work on the cross (Colossians 2:13-15)
And in your Seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed: In Galatians Paul explains that the Seed is Christ and the blessing is the promised Holy Spirit:
Galatians 3:14-16 MKJV so that the blessing of Abraham might be to the nations in Jesus Christ, and that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith. (15) Brothers, I speak according to man, a covenant having been ratified, even among mankind, no one sets aside or adds to it. (16) And to Abraham and to his Seed the promises were spoken. It does not say, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, "And to your Seed," which is Christ.
The nations of the world were to be blessed through Jesus and through the Holy Spirit being poured out upon them! This was God's intention, and He wrapped it up inside the Abrahamic Covenant!
These great and blessings are ours in Christ, through faith. They are the blessings of those who have the “faith of Abraham” that obeys God and believes Him for “impossible” things. It is a deep unshakable faith in the nature and character of a good and righteous God who keeps His Word. It is the faith that the nature and character of God will be manifest in real and practical ways in the midst of our daily lives.
The chapter ends with what seems like an inconsequential list of names of Abraham's relatives. These “names” became nations, competitors to Israel and often enemies (like Aram) that came and went in history. These once mighty nations are now forgotten while Israel endures. And the Church endures. The gates of Hell have not prevailed against them. The blessing of Abraham is not just a bunch of nice words, it has come true in history, and it has come true in Christ. It is real, it worked, and it still shapes world history. You can rely on the Word of God!
John Edmiston (firstname.lastname@example.org)
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