Shavua tov! Good week to you!
We’ve been talking about what faith looks like, and how YHVH keeps every promise He has made. Today we are going to see even more evidences of the great faith Abraham had in the promises of God. When Abraham was firmly convinced on God’s promise, he began to take concrete actions on those promises, even though it looked like foolishness to everyone around him.
In Genesis 23, Abraham purchases land in Canaan so that he can bury Sarah his wife. Why didn’t he just accept a gift from Ephron, burying his wife on Ephron’s land? I firmly believe this was an act of faith by Abraham. He had been promised by YHVH that all the land would be given to him, but he put feet to his faith by actually paying for the land, so that no one would ever be able to accuse him of stealing it.
(And not to get political on you, but if YHVH has given a piece of real estate in the Middle East to Abraham and his descendants forever, then not even presidents can give it to someone else.)
In Genesis 24, Abraham finds a wife for his son from among his own people, so that he will not intermarry with the Canaanites. He understands the importance of staying set apart, especially in marriage. This passage makes me cry every time I read it, for my heart’s prayer is that the Father will clearly provide wives for my sons from “among our own people, rather than from the women of “Babylon” among whom we dwell.
I’d like to point out something interesting I saw today. Remember how I said that I look for a new Hebrew word to learn each day?
I’ve already learned that derek is the Hebrew word for road (Strong’s #1870). So when I read this verse and saw the word “way,” I checked, and sure enough, I remembered the word correctly! (Yay!!! I’m starting to get my Hebrew vocabulary down!!!)
“And [Abraham’s servant] said, ‘Blessed be YHVH God of my master Abraham, who has not forsaken His mercy and His truth toward my master. As for me, being on the way, YHVH led me to the house of my master’s brethren'” (Genesis 24:27).
It’s so comforting to me that, while we are stepping on the path of life, as each foot hits the ground, He is guiding and directing us. If I want to put this in a more modern way, if I’ll simply steer my truck so that it stays on His Road, He will continue to help my headlights shine ahead of me to stay safe in the dark.
What is the road He wants me to stay on? It’s the road of obedience to His commandments.
“Your word is a lamp to my feet
And a light to my path” (Psalm 119:105).
Abraham was careful to obey His commands, as we have learned (Genesis 18:19). This is why Abraham isn’t looking for a wife for Isaac from among the Canaanites. He knows they don’t have a chance of finding an obedience and godly woman there.
But this is a “two-way street” (pun intended). As Abraham and his faithful servant determine to drive on the path, YHVH guides and directs them to the correct destination!
“[Abraham] said to [his servant], ‘YHVH, before whom I walk, will send His angel with you and prosper your way; and you shall take a wife for my son from my family and from my father’s house'” (Genesis 24:40).
Yup, there is the word derek again (meaning way or road). Abraham is confident that YHVH will “prosper” his way, which in this case means He will provide a wife for his son Isaac.
The word prosper (Strong’s #6743) means “to succeed; to move forward in distance, position or in thriving.” To continue with the symbolism of a truck, this means that the truck is going to go higher and higher, over the mountain, to a land of success. In Abraham’s case, he clearly meant that YHVH would provide that best woman to be Isaac’s wife.
It reminded me of a verse I learned in high school:
“This Book of the Torah shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success” (Joshua 1:8).
You will make your “way prosperous,” and yes, those are exactly the same two Hebrew words.
In Psalm 33, we are reminded yet again of the confidence we can have in His Word.
“For the word of YHVH is right,
And all His work is done in truth…
For He spoke, and it was done;
He commanded, and it stood fast.
YHVH brings the counsel of the nations to nothing;
He makes the plans of the peoples of no effect.
The counsel of YHVH stands forever,
The plans of His heart to all generations” (Psalm 33:4, 9-11).
It takes daily practice to learn to walk with the confidence and faith Abraham had. I encourage you to repeat His promises over and over to yourself, even setting up memorials to yourself around your home where you are sure to see them often. Learn to sing praise to Him (Psalm 33:1-3), because music about His great deeds brings up our trust levels so that we depend on Him in the future. I guess you could call music the “auto maintenance” you need to keep your truck on the right path.
And in exchange, He will keep His eye on you and your path, safely delivering you to the promise He gave.
“Behold, the eye of YHVH is on those who fear Him,
On those who hope in His mercy” (Psalm 33:18).
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture in this blog post taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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