Last Sunday, we began a series entitled, “On the Edge”. This series will explore the adventurous and exciting life it is to follow God. While believers in Jesus have everything needed for life and godliness and contain the elements needed for deep security and satisfaction – God always is leading His people into adventure: deeper revelation, deeper love, great power, and new horizons. As we go through this series, we will follow one man’s life as an example of the adventurous life of the faithful. We know him as Abraham, but his given name was Abram. Last time we were together, we looked at how easy it can be to settle for less than what God has for you. History, tragedy, comfort – all can keep us from moving on in God. Abram’s father settled but there was a different spirit in his son.
Every adventure with God begins with a word from the Lord. Most words from God contain two out of three primary parts:
1. Direction: the word will tell us to do something that requires faith.
2. Promise: the word will often reveal to us benefits gained from obedience to the direction.
3. Increase: the obtaining of the promise carries within it some form of increase in influence.
Abram’s word contained all three parts:
1. Direction: “Get out of your country, from your family and from your father’s house to a land I will show you.”
2. Promise: “I will make you a great nation and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed. I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you.”
3. Increase: “I will bless you; make your name great; and you shall be a blessing.”
Your word from God may contain all those parts as well. It will at least contain direction. But, know this: there is always a blessing in obedience. And, blessings are ultimately not for us only – but are for the increase of the gospel and magnification of the glory of God. Once Abram received his word from God, he faced a decision – the same one everyone faces – will we obey or not? We all have something in common with one another – with Abram – the immediate defiance of God’s Word to you. Expect that every tragedy, weakness, failure and possible negative outcome will be thrown in your face.
We’re not clued into every obstacle Abram faced to his word. As we saw last week, the Bible simply says: Abram departed as the Lord had spoken to him. As far as the journey goes, we don’t know what they faced along the way. The Bible simply says: “They departed to go to the land of Canaan. So they came to the land of Canaan.” There had to be more to it than that, right? There’s more to it when we get a directional Word from God. To successfully navigate and to keep you from settling along the way for less than what God has for you – you must build an altar for the Word!
What is an altar? An altar is a place where the divine and human interacted. An altar also carries with it the idea of sacrifice. When the human and the divine interacted, an altar was built to indicate the sacrifice of the human will to the divine will. The altar is more important than the temple. When the Israelites returned from exile to rebuild Jerusalem, they built the altar before they built the temple. The temple is an empty shell if the place of the sacrifice of the human will to the divine will is not functioning properly.
What has God spoken to you to do? Build an altar for the God who gave you the Word. Upon that altar, sacrifice every human desire, will, or fear to the accomplishment of the divine plan. Remember: the key to adventure – the key to your increase in the Spirit is tied intricately to your obedience!
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