Devotional & Reflection

Week 2, Feb 2002

Genesis 15: God Said So Listen
By Pang Hee Hung, Director & Trainer, Ezra Resources

Gen 15:1 After this, the word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision: "Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your very great reward. "
v2 But Abram said, "O Sovereign LORD, what can you give me since I remain childless and the one who will inherit my estate is Eliezer of Damascus?"
v3 And Abram said, "You have given me no children; so a servant in my household will be my heir."
v4 Then the word of the LORD came to him: "This man will not be your heir, but a son coming from your own body will be your heir."
v5 He took him outside and said, "Look up at the heavens and count the stars--if indeed you can count them."
Then he said to him, "So shall your offspring be."
v6 Abram believed the LORD, and he credited it to him as righteousness.

When was the last time we were afraid? Did God speak a word to assure & comfort us?

I remembered I made a mistake when I was working in a bank. It could blow up or it can just die away. I prayed really hard. Then there was a reassuring word. The situation did not blow up. Another time I was in transition and searching for a direction. There was a word - and God spoke through a friend of mine, confirmed by circumstances.

In this passage, after coming out of a battle, Abram was told not to be afraid. Wow wouldn’t it be nice to have God speak to us in times of trouble - whenever we are attacked, suffer sickness, or face probable retrenchment. Just count the number of times "the word of the Lord came" or "God / He said" in the passage. These phrases occurred 7 times (15:1,4, 5 (2x), 7, 9, 13)

God can speak to us in all and for all circumstances. He answered to Abram's fears & even seemingly earthly concerns about his descendants. But through Abram, the line of Israel and Jesus resulted. Like Abram, when God said, we need to listen.

You must be wondering how come it is so easy for Abram and the people in the Bible to hear God. To tell you the truth, even for a pastor like me, it is not so easy to hear God. For one, hearing and speaking the word of God is dependent on our communion with God. Second, our hearing is clouded by our fleshly thoughts and worldly desires - just as when we ask for the wrong motives, we do not receive (Jas 4:3). Third, the continuing communion with God depends on whether we believed (Gen 15:6) and acted upon the word of God given to us previously. To hear God then, we need to commune with Him, watch our motives and obey His word. God can speak to us through the Bible, through our experiences, through supernatural (e.g. audible voice and visions) and natural means (e.g. wise counsel, friends and circumstances) (See also Jack Deere, " Surprised By The Voice Of God ).

For this week, I sense that instead of reading a long devotional, God wants us to inquire of Him and just listen to Him. So would you spend some time now to listen to Him for your situation?

As parents of four children, my wife and I are sometimes annoyed that our children fail to listen to us - especially when we offer sound advice.
How have we failed to listen to God and acted on His sound advice?

Copyright By Author