The promise of a people

December 11, 2016 Speaker: Pastor Gary Smith Series: The Promised Son

Topic: Christmas Scripture: Genesis 12:1–12:3

The promised son
The promise of a people, Genesis 12:1-3 – outline
God’s promise to bless the nations through Abraham’s people was fulfilled in Jesus

The first couple sins and brings pain and death on the human race. They get expelled from Eden. As man multiplies, so does his evil. God wipes out all people with a flood for a human race reboot with Noah and family. Noah’s descendants try to build a tower to heaven to make a name for themselves and keep from being disbursed. But God confuses their language and disburses them. What hope is there for humanity? Where is this promised deliverer, the woman’s offspring? In Genesis 11, the author lists the descendants of Shem, one of Noah’s sons up through Terah, the father of Abram.

1) Now the LORD said to Abram, “Go from your country and your kindred and your father’s house to the land that I will show you, 12:1.
What are the elements of God’s call to Abram that require him to trust God’s word?

2) And I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing, 12:2.
The connection with v.1 is “Go…so that I may make you a great nation, and bless you, and make your name great.” God blessed the first man and woman when he made them. He blessed Noah and his sons after the flood. In view of this pattern, what is the significance of God promising to bless Abram?
What do Luke 1:31–32 and Philippians 2:9–10 say about the fulfillment of God’s promise to make Abram’s name great? How does the phrase “so that you will be a blessing” connect with the first three promises?

3) I will bless those who bless you, and him who dishonors you I will curse, and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.”
What does “I will bless those who bless you, and him who dishonors you I will curse” say about how God relates to people? What do Genesis 15:5, 17:4–6 and 22:17–18 say about how the promised blessing comes through Abram’s offspring?

Does this Abrahamic blessing come to the nations by people from the nations becoming Jews, by joining the nation of Israel? If not, why not? So how does the blessing of Abraham come to the nations, if his very offspring can’t be the means of giving it? Answer in light of Luke 1:54–55, Galatians 3:16 and 3:29. How then does it come to us through Christ? Galatians 3:8 and 3:14. What specifically do these verses say the blessing IS?
Since in Christ, WE are Abraham’s offspring, (Gal. 3:29), how do we live out that we are “blessed to be a blessing” to all the nations? (See Matthew 28:19-20, Luke 24:46-47). How
will God’s promises to multiply Abraham’s offspring like the stars, and that they will become a multitude of nations, be fulfilled? (See Revelation 7:9–10).

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