The Promises to Abraham

"And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel to Abraham beforehand, saying, "In you all the nations shall be blessed" (Galatians 3:8, NKJV).

Among the notable men of God described in the Old Testament writings is one very special man. His name is Abraham and his many qualifications include such expressions as: "friend of God", "father of the faithful" and "heir of the world".

Abraham was a very faithful servant of God. His role in the plan and purpose of God began during his early life some 2,000 years before Christ. God's plan for Abraham is still active with certain precious promises that will be fulfilled after Abraham is resurrected from the dead.

New Testament Role

Many people think of Abraham as a character from history, confined to the early chapters of the book of Genesis. The truth is that the name Abraham appears over 60 times in the New Testament, which is a testimony to the importance of this man throughout the entire plan of God.

Abraham and the Gospel

In the verse quoted at the head of this page, we are told that the gospel of salvation was preached to Abraham. Abraham was given the essence of the gospel message when he was told that through him and is descendent (Christ), all nations of the earth would be blessed. The principle for that blessing is clearly described. God would justify the Gentiles (nations) through faith.

Strong in Faith

Abraham was a man with such strength of faith in God that he has become the father of the faithful from all ages. He was promised a son when he was seventy five years old. He believed in God's promise and remained faithful for twenty five years before Isaac, the promised son, was born.

His great faith is described thus:

  1. Romans 4:18-22
  2. Who against hope believed in hope, that he might become the father of many nations, according to that which was spoken, So shall thy seed be.
  3. And being not weak in faith, he considered not his own body now dead, when he was about an hundred years old, neither yet the deadness of Sarah's womb:
  4. He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God;
  5. And being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform. And therefore it was imputed to him for righteousness.
Our Example

Abraham is an excellent example for us as we attempt to achieve the blessing of eternal life through our faith in the promises of God. The promises made to Abraham are well worth our consideration as we look for the motivation that inspired Abraham to faithful obedience.

Abraham was given very special promises. We can inherit these same promises through Christ.

The Promises

God made many "great and precious promises" to Abraham and to his descendent, Jesus Christ (II Peter 1:4). We have the opportunity to be the children of God through faith in Jesus Christ, and if we have been baptized into Christ, we also may become Abraham's descendents and heirs to the same promises. These promises are outlined in the Book of Genesis starting in Chapter 12. These promises to Abraham are:

  1. Genesis 12:1-3
  2. Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will shew thee:
  3. 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:
  4. And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.

The promises continue in Chapter 13:

  1. Genesis 13:14-15
  2. And the LORD said unto Abram, after that Lot was separated from him, Lift up now thine eyes, and look from the place where thou art northward, and southward, and eastward, and westward:
  3. For all the land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed for ever
Additional Promises
  1. Genesis 22:15-18
  2. And the angel of the LORD called unto Abraham out of heaven the second time,
  3. And said, By myself have I sworn, saith the LORD, for because thou hast done this thing, and hast not withheld thy son, thine only son:
  4. That in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore; and thy seed shall possess the gate of his enemies;
  5. And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice.
God's Oath

These precious promises were so special, and so sure and certain to be fulfilled that God swore by himself. The writer to the Hebrews tells us:

  1. Hebrews 6:17-18
  2. Wherein God, willing more abundantly to shew unto the heirs of promise the immutability of his counsel, confirmed it by an oath:
  3. That by two immutable things, in which it was impossible for God to lie, we might have a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us.

This hope is the hope of the promises made to Abraham and available also to us, through faith and baptism into Christ as described in Galatians 3:27-29.

Promised Land
Promised Blessings
Promised Greatness
Promised Descendents
Promised Power
Promised Forever
Promises Fulfilled Through Christ

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