Come discover God’s heart, desire, and provision for you through … The Abrahamic Covenant Previously we learned that God is intimately involved in the affairs of man God plans to redeem the earth and make all things new through Jesus Christ, for Gods glory. God decided to adopt us into His family through Jesus Christ. Ephesians 1:4-5 For a true love relationship to occur, we had to be free to reject Him. Throughout the Bible, God’s relentless pursuit of us is seen in the “Divine Covenants”. What is a Covenant? A covenant is a bond in blood, sovereignly administered. A covenant is that which binds people together. It is always a person, either God or man, who makes a covenant. The result of a covenant commitment is the establishment of a relationship. A covenant commits people to one another. The sovereign God of heaven and earth dictates the terms of His covenant. There is no bargaining or contracting in divine covenants. The presence of a “sign” at the beginning of a covenant also emphasizes that a divine covenant binds people together There is a consequence for covenantal violation. How does this relate to us? The extent of the divine covenants reaches from the beginning of the world to the end of the age. God’s multiple covenants ultimately unite into a single relationship – a bond between God and man. Satisfies our deepest human need and our ultimate purpose in life. What have we just learned? 1. 2. Adam – The shedding of blood is necessary for forgiveness of sin(1 man) Noah – The redemptive nature of God (1 family) We see in (Genesis 11:1) - At Babel, man disobeyed God and didn’t scatter, God judged them and confused their language (70 distinct families & languages) The Abrahamic Covenant We will learn about Abraham and his family We will learn how God established His relationship with Abraham and his descendants through blessing. We will learn who his descendents were and are We will learn how Gods heart, desire and provision for Abraham blesses us We will learn how this blessing compels us to be blessors. (A balance between the Top Line/ Bottom Line) Viewing the Covenant as The “Blessor Franchise” Paradigm From Merriam Webster paradigm 1 : EXAMPLE, PATTERN; especially : an outstandingly clear or typical example or archetype example 4 : a parallel or closely similar case especially when serving as a precedent or model The “Blessor Franchise” is a model to help understand the Abrahamic Covenant. A Franchise might consist of: The franchisor The franchisee The business A product A balance sheet. Top Line/Bottom Line, Assets/Liabilities, Profits/Losses Goals and objectives Employee(s) Recruitment, selection and training plans Customer(s) A Supplier(s) Genesis 12 The Call of Abram 1 The LORD had said to Abram, "Leave your country, your people and your father's household and go to the land I will show you. 2 "I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. 3 I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you." 4 So Abram left, as the LORD had told him; and Lot went with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he set out from Haran. 5 He took his wife Sarai, his nephew Lot, all the possessions they had accumulated and the people they had acquired in Haran, and they set out for the land of Canaan, and they arrived there. The Top Line Genesis 12:2,3 “I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you” A Top Line Blessing Blessor established The Bottom Line Genesis 12:2,3 “and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.” A Bottom Line Blessing In our franchise, as in any business, our goal must be that our top line match our bottom line. The Promise Genesis 12:2,3 “whoever curses you will I curse;” and all peoples (Nations) on earth will be blessed through you." In Greek, Nations is “panta ta ethne” such as Jewish, Hahn, Cherokee etc. The Story We will be viewing a segment from a PBS Documentary on the life of Abraham titled: “Walking The Bible” by Bruce Feiler The “Blessor Franchise” was borrowed from author Don Richardson. The lesson presentation and discussion questions are available at: http://www.icfutd.org/calendar.htm All biblical references are available at: http://www.biblegateway.com/ For emphasis, God repeatedly speaks to Abraham … Genesis 18:28 Again to Abraham Genesis 22:15-18 Once again to Abraham Genesis 26:4 To Isaac Abrahams son Genesis 28:14 To Jacob Abrahams grandson And to his seed (us) 400 other times either by direct quote or in paraphrase The rest of the story Genesis 16:1-15 Abraham and Sarah try to take control of the problem and Abraham conceives a son, Ishmael, through Hagar a concubine. Genesis 17:11 A sign is given (circumcision). Genesis 21:1 God blesses them by giving them a son, Isaac. Gen. 21:8-20 God tells Abraham to send Ishmael away, but not before honoring the promise that his descendent would be a great nation. Genesis 22:1-6 God tests Abraham (sacrifice your son). Genesis 22:7-15 A blood sacrifice of Isaac was required (a lamb was provided and substituted). The Blessor Franchise In Review The franchisor: God The franchisee: Abraham The business: Blessor The product (s): Blessings and more blessors The balance sheet: Top line blessings, bottom line blessings. Goals and objectives: Operate so that our top line blessings equal our bottom line blessings. Employee (s): Abraham, his descendents (including US), and the Nations that have been blessed and are blessors. Customer (s): The Nations that have yet to be blessed A Supplier: God Himself A successful track record: Started with 69 families and languages in 2000 b.c. Grew to 16,008 speaking 6912 languages in 2006 a.d. The future: 6584 ethne (nations), speaking 2529 languages have yet to become blessors. See: http://www.wycliffe.org/wbtusa/trangoal.htm & http://www.joshuaproject.net/index.php In Conclusion The “Blessor Franchise” is a Grand Theme of the Bible. God is in the business of blessing and creating blessors. Gods method was to model His business through a relationship with Abraham. Abraham was Gods initial product and for those that hear his story, it acts as a teaching tool for us to follow. God continues to work with Abraham and his descendents (including us), producing blessors through blessors, coming to have relationship with (know) God. Next, we will learn the end of the story, that God planned to send His son (Himself), in the form of Jesus, to give us a perfect model and a perfect blessing.