January 16, 2011

Why God Chose Abraham ~ And Why Child Training is so Important For You

Molnár József: Ábrahám kiköltözéseImage via Wikipedia
I've been reading about Abraham since the new year began and have come to understand him differently than before, but more importantly "why" God chose Abraham to be the "father of faith" as he is commonly referred.

If you know of Abraham you probably have heard alot about the following (Genesis12:2-3)
  • God told him he would make him a "great nation"
  • He would make his name "great"
  • That he would be a blessing
  • How all the families of the earth would be blessed in him
  • And in later verses, God promises him the land of Canaan to him and his descendants,
  • and how God gave him righteous standing with him due to Abraham's faith
Essentially God told him what to do and what God would do with him and with his life.

On this round of reading about Abraham I've parked on a later verse that indicates why God chose Abraham.  Genesis 18:19 says;

              "For I have known him, in order that he may command his children and his household after him, that they keep the way of the Lord, to do righteousness and justice, that the Lord may bring to Abraham what He has spoken to him."

or in the Message translation;

            "Abraham is going to become a large and strong nation; all the nations of the world are going to find themselves blessed through him. Yes, I've settled on him as the one to train his children and future family to observe God's way of life, live kindly and generously and fairly, so that God can complete in Abraham what he promised him."

So this is my take on why God chose Abraham to introduce Himself to and make him the father of the Jewish and Christian faith's.

  • Despite the fact that Abraham only had one child by his wife Sarah (and maybe because of it), Abraham became a generational-thinker
  • The very reason he was chosen was because God knew that Abraham would transmit who God was and what God wanted to his children and people with him.
  • Abraham was a trainer; he had the motivation (which likely lead to an increasing ability) to teach, instruct and coach his family  
  • God spoke all these promises (nation, land, etc.) to Abraham before he even had any children.  Since he and Sarah lived many years childless, they likely developed a strong desire for children and learned to never treat their fertility casually.
One of the most striking phrases of the prior verse was the last one, "...that the Lord may bring to Abraham what He has spoken to him."  Or, "...so that God can complete in Abraham what he promised him."   So in my understanding, Abraham's destiny of becoming a nation, inheriting a land, becoming and receiving all that God had promised him, would be manifested by the proper training of his family to live righteously and follow after God.  

Or in equation format;  family training = God's promises

For my own benefit I wrote words that help me understand this topic better, here they are; teaching, training, instructing, sharing, coaching, commanding, directing, discipling, igniting, revealing, deciphering, uncovering, discovering, sparking, demonstrating, pastoring, showing, sheparding, mentoring, modeling...got any more?


  1. I found your blog through your wife's blog. And, as I scrolled through several of your posts, I'm impressed with what I see. You've got lots of insight and I love your point of view as a Dad. I'll have to have my husband come check this out and I'll be back too!
    Have a blessed day!

    1. thanks for the kind words Karen, any wisdom you can glean from my mistakes and mis-steps as a dad or a husband I am grateful for. If I've learned anything it is from these and God's grace.

  2. This is nothing more than boasting in the flesh. Abram was chose by God simply because he ' had mercy on whom he wanted to and compassion on whon he wanted to. Let,s not turn this into some self righteous platform to boast in the flesh. Abram was into idol worship until God revealed himself to Abram. He didn,t Know God from Adams' housecat until he revealed himself to him. The same with Noah.David was some kind of family man. God promised that out of his loins would come the Kingship. The first evidence of anyone not being saved is that they love to tread on God's glory.You are no different than the Pharisee of Luke 18.

    1. My friend, I am sorry you took this post the way you did and will prayerfully consider what you've shared. I do agree with you that it was a sovereign act of God to chose Abram and that prior to this Abram likely had a number of different entities he worshiped. But could it be that in God's foreknowledge, God knew that Abram would respond to God's revealing himself to Abraham the way he did? I also submit that God foreknew that Abraham's response to being childless for a long period of time would be one of great gratitude and great intentionality towards raising Ishmael and Isacc. I make no boast my friend, in this post or others, that I am some example of a great dad or follower of Christ (your Pharisee comment). My "righteousness is as filthly rags" and if there is anything good that comes from my life it is a direct result of the grace of God and Holy Spirit's santicfying work in my wretched heart (just like Abraham). Despite either of our comments, my post or what you perceive my motivations to be, you and I still need to wrestle with Genesis 18:19. I wish you well and appreciate you visiting.

  3. This is by no means a strike at your parenting. I believe we are mostly talking theology here. I wis there were more parents like my dad and you. I'm the second of 8 boys, no girls. Mother tried her best. God has his reasons for what he does. He will always accomplish his purpose. If not with me with someone else. I count it as privelege.I've pondered Gen.18:19 and what I do when dealing with things of this nature is to look at Paul, David, Abraham,and every old testament patriarch or new testament saint "own testimony" of what happened. In This case Gen. 24:7 Josh 24:3.When Elijah one of the greatest phophets thought otherwise God had to straighten him out that he was not the only one left. He has a remnant from every tribe , tongue, kindred and people. Abram gets no credit here and if he does show me anywhere he states this. God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of Christ. Gal.6:14 1 Cor. 1:29 That no flesh should glory in his presence Isaiah 42:8 I am the Lord, that is my name; and my glory will I not give to another Rom. 3:27 Where is boasting then it is excluded Rom.4:2 ...Not before God

    1. Thanks for your thoughts on this topic, I will consider them closely. Most of all, thanks for visiting and engaging the post (and poster)! I wish you well.

  4. Hello, I am a pastor and enjoyed your site. I believe the reason God chose Abraham was because he came to the knowledge of the one true God and who He is. God knew that Abraham would teach his children after him of the truth of this one true God. His children was to become the kings and priests of God in all the earth. All nations of the earth were to be blessed by Abraham and his children thru their finding the true living God. Remember in our journey thru life we all are searching for truth
    And finding out where we fit. Each one of us are special in Gods eyes. He has a plan for each of us. Abrahams family were pagans. Before the Lord appeared to Abraham he was a pagan. He did not know the true God until this true God appeared unto him. God revealed himself as the "I AM that I AM". This message of the I AM was the message of the true God. It is the same message Jesus revealed to the world when He said, I AM He that liveth and was dead but am alive forever more. Jesus,
    Is the great I Am the way, Truth and Life. Enough for now. Keep up you good work. God bless you and your family.
    Pastor Larry Perkins


Thanks for sharing your comments here!