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An Honest Eulogy Of A Great Man, Part 1

Fellowship in the Word / Bil Gebhardt
The Truth Network Radio
March 26, 2021 8:00 am

An Honest Eulogy Of A Great Man, Part 1

Fellowship in the Word / Bil Gebhardt

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Today on Fellowship in the Word pastor Bill Gebhart challenges you to become a fully functioning follower of Jesus Christ. It doesn't matter.

David Peter doesn't matter. You see weaknesses. God goes out of his way to give you an authentic you and Abraham certainly had his own weaknesses joining us today on this additional Fellowship in the Word pastor Bill Gebhart Fellowship in the Words the radio ministry of Fellowship Bible church located in Metairie, Louisiana going pastor Bill Gebhart now is once again he shows us how God's word meets our world, there is father that's used in the timber of the lumbering industry. It simply goes like this tree is best measured when it's down call Sandberg use that exact line when he wrote his epic biography of Abraham Lincoln.

You see, we should hesitate to admire and sometimes deified people who still have years before that. And with those years the potential of completely disgracing themselves and running their reputations. But when the tree is out we can judge the greatness of a life with confidence. I want you this morning to see the mighty Redwood that was Abraham down line horizontally before us. In a sense I simply want to give his eulogy's many imperfections reveal that he was a man with a nature just like ours. And yet nearly half of the people on the planet today judge him is great. Muslims, Jews and Christians all venerate him, but should we say that he was great emphatically yes.

And I say that not because the research I did or studying his life. But I say's great because God says is great. He not only as a friend of God. But God said he is a very special man when it comes to faith that see what God says about them. Open your Bibles to Hebrews chapter 11 Hebrews chapter 11 and the first thing will going to see in verse eight.

Is this when he was called. He obeyed when he was called, he obeyed. Notice what the writer of Hebrews says by faith Abraham, when he was called, obeyed by going out to a place which he was to receive for an inheritance. Anyone out, not knowing where he was going those first two words describe Abraham by faith by faith. Notice he obeyed. Not because he knew where he was going. He didn't not because the E had a printout of what his future would hold. He didn't not because he could calculate the return on his investment. He didn't not because he didn't have any other options in his life at home. He was likely a very prosperous man living in a very wealthy city for 75 years.

He had spent nurturing relationships with his family and with his friends and oh by the way, yes he was 75 and by faith he left town while so much more than that, no destination, no travel agency no AAA membership no map, no GPS, no Social Security, no police to guarantee his safety. No accommodations, no prayer support from home, and yet when he was called. He obeyed 75-year-old man. By the way, we know that he ended up in the land of Canaan, but he walked there he worked in a further distance than if you and I were to leave today and start walking to Chicago 75-year-old man 600 miles to her run 400 more miles to Shechem. He walked a thousand miles. By late this is the Bronze Age.

Have you thought about that if you thought about was to say this, his footwear may go to North face and get hiking boots, you know these event none of that. He just starts walking, not knowing where he was going. What does that tell us to me. It says this God's rewards await us when were willing to step out, not knowing all the details. See, I think that's a challenge to us.

A lot of us will say one willing to do something for God, but I need the details. Let me explain something if you have all the details.

It's not faith. If you have all the details such as the rational decision and I'm not against rational decisions. But that's not faith you see when God calls you just obey. He just went, sometimes I can really pay dividends. Velma and I are both grateful that neither one of us knew a thing about Mick Tyree, Louisiana. All I remember as I went on to the seminary. There were churches on the board and one of them said Tyree Louisiana I signed up told her someplace in Louisiana Mehmet Tyree and I signed up, but I'm kinda glad I didn't know I did check it out a bit before and I'll say it, but the point is, I'm glad I didn't know you see that's the way God operates of God's calling you your obey and that's what Abraham did, it wasn't without peril or cost. It always has peril and cost. Secondly, what he was promised he believed notice verse nine by faith he lived as an alien in the land of promise as in a foreign land dwelling in tents with Isaac and Jacob and fellow heirs of the same promise, for he was looking for a city which has a foundation whose architect and builder is God. The writer of Hebrews says look he never really got to a great place. He knew ultimately there's going to be a great place just like we do in the writer of Hebrews talks about in a sense, the heavenly Jerusalem. But Abraham never really realized any of that kind of thing. Imagine he gets there and he doesn't know the language he gets there any doesn't know the culture he gets there any doesn't know anybody. You see, that's what happens. How does he do this.

The promises of God sustained him. He believed them. God said I'm going to take you to Woodland and he said okay then you're taking me to land and God also said to them over and over again that through you and errors coming through you. The promise is going to be given through you. The covenant is going to be fulfilled. So Abraham just believe it whenever he was promised he believed wanted to sort of get a little bit closer and cited that tone with me to Romans chapter 4 see the apostle Paul confirms what we had said in the introduction. He also saw Abraham was a great man.

The apostle Paul in Romans is the first one to really in a sentence be able to articulate the gospel of grace and how does someone stand justified before a holy God in the prime great example that he uses is not David on a secondary way. Certainly not Moses uses Abraham, Abraham and Josť wine a moment. Look at verse 13 of chapter 4, Romans, for the promise to Abraham or to his descendents that he would be heir of the world was not through the law but through the righteousness of faith. For those who are of the law are heirs, faith is made void and the promise is nullified.

He said for the law brings about wrath, but where there is no law there is also no violation is inference service. The thing about graces, it requires faith. That's the whole point of grace graces unmerited favor grace is a free gift all you can do is receive it all you can do is believe and receive nothing else she could do. It has none of the non-of the tentacles of religion. The whole idea that you need to earn it.

You need to work for you'll deserve it if you do this if you do that none of that's there. There's no point in it and that was Abraham. Then Paul writes this. For this reason, it is by faith, in order that it may be in accordance with grace, so that the promise will be guaranteed.

He says to all the descendents not only those who are of the law, but he said to those who are of faith of Abraham, who was the father of us all a great father of all believers. Abraham sees it as it is written, a father of many nations, he said, have I made you in the presence of him. He said who believed, even God, who gives life to the dead and calls into being that which is not exist in hope against hope, he says he believed so that he might become the father of many nations, according to that, he said, which had been spoken, so shall your descendents be without becoming weak in faith. He contemplated his own body. Now as good as dead since he was about 100 years old and the deadness of Sarah's woman yet with respect to the promise of God.

He did not waver in unbelief but grew strong in the faith, giving glory to God and being fully assured that what God had promised he was able to perform. That's what he did pulses.

That's an amazing thing.

Maybe a better way to describe Eugene Peterson in his paraphrase of the Bible in Romans four says this. This is 19 through 21. According to Peterson is an Abraham didn't focus in his own impotence and say it's hopeless. This hundred-year-old body could never father a child nor to be surveys. Sarah's decades of infertility and give up. He didn't tiptoe around God's promise, asking cautiously skeptical questions. He says now he plunged into the promise and he came up strong ready for God sure that God would make good on what God had said that's what he did. Abraham was a great man because what God promised he believed in Abraham was a great man because when God called. He obeyed.

Now back to Hebrews 11 verse 17, the third point is this. When Abraham was tested, he trusted when Abraham was tested, he trusted again by faith. In verse 17 Abraham when he was tested, offered up Isaac and he who had received the promises was offering up his only begotten son, and it was he said, to whom it was said in Isaac your descendents shall be called. He considered that God is able to raise people even from the dead from which he also received them back. He says, is a type we look at that last time, but no matter how you see that it's astounding to me as faith. Remember when he and Isaac were going to go walk up and worship and make the sacrifice he told the servants will be back right there. There's this faith. Normally, when you take a person up you lamb on altering your slit their throat.

You don't come back together.

But he said will come back. Why is that even if I slam God will raise him up. Why he said he's the child of the promise. God told me something I believe God for it. By the way, often God's tests are not easy.

You see this a lot away seems when you first really irrational, but it wasn't easy. God does this often is recalled at the let go test you see what the lover who did love more than anything else on this planet. Isaac cuts is are you willing to let go. He said yes.

The me ask you is there anything in your life or anyone that you would not let go for God. Think about it for moment be honest with yourself. Is there anything or anyone in your life that you would not let go of for God because if you see yes there is something that I'm saying to you, you really don't know God at all, you don't know what is characters like you say you don't know what kind of goodness is intrinsic to God, God would not, in a sense, ask Abraham to murder a son she just for the sake that I'm asking you to do it.

God always has a godly good agenda never has something else seem we withhold that on so often what God does in our lives is he test this by asking us will you hold loosely something you have tremendous value to let go test is difficult for all of us to say the least. So when he was called. He obeyed and when he what he was promised he believed when he was tested he trusted and there's one more. That's not in Hebrews, but one with the chose his character as he was blessed he shared some of the great things about them and that's all important because this guy was loaded. This is a rich, rich man in his world, he would be in our world, a billionaire, he is an extremely rich man. He is a man that has flocks and herds silver and gold servants, cattle, donkeys, camels, sheep and goats. He's an extremely wealthy man. But as he was blessed, blessed others. Remember the story with lot who was promised the promise land.

Abraham so when they got there they had so much affluence because there herds they had to divide.

So what did Abraham do the satellite you choose what you thought doesn't have a right to that so generously is there something else about Abraham and sometimes as bothersome folks. It shouldn't, but Sarah died and when Sarah died, Abraham married to Torah. One of the concubines and she had several sons to him and he took care of all them, none of them because they were concubines sons were allowed to inherit anything. Everything he had.

Went Isaac. So what do you do get gifts to his sons. He set them all up when you do that is a generous man that's who he is. God blesses us materially to enjoy and to share the blessing and that's exactly what Abraham did. He had six sons. The good Torah and he made sure all them are well taken care of. So he's a great man because of God called. He obeyed and went. He was promised he believed that when he was tested he trusted and as he was blessed he shared, but there's something else about him that I really enjoy because I can identify with us. He has weaknesses his failures in his life that's so important for us to understand. You see it all through Scripture. It doesn't matter if it's David or Peter doesn't matter. You see weaknesses. God goes out of his way to give you an authentic view of people and Abraham certainly had his own weaknesses when he was afraid he retreated.

Remember there was a famine in the land in Abraham instead of staying a lantern waiting on God to provide. Besides the one to Egypt and then you know the whole story of what happens to men. Egypt and then Hagar goes back with him to the land of Canaan and Ishmael was born in his all those complications, but the point wasn't when he was afraid he decided he would retreat and there's another thing. And I think this may have been a more consistent characteristic of Abraham when he was threatened he lied when he was threatened he lied.

Now remember, he went before Pharaoh and said when he got to Egypt, that Sarah was so beautiful. The Egyptians see how beautiful she is to become part of Pharaoh's harem and then they'll kill me. So Sarah, we got a deal for you to say you're my sister in the lead me live and that didn't go to well. But then, by the way, got back into the promised land. He ran into Abimelech and the same thing happen again. He didn't learn his lesson the first time and what did he do he live again.

The exact same line, but there's something even more intriguing about this is a characteristic I want you to go with me now to Genesis 26 Genesis 26 in verse one to listen how this reads I think in a real life.

While this is familiar. Now there was famine in the land there we go again. Except this is an about Abraham.

This is about Isaac.

Now there was famine in the land besides the previous famine. He said that had occurred in the days of Abraham. This is all new famine in it so it says so Isaac went to GU and you are to Abimelech, the king of the Philistines Philistines.

By the way the seafaring guys.

They live on a lot of people. Historians will say the Philistines were the first Vikings. They rated people, plundered people.

They were very good semen, and so he goes and runs into the land. The Philistines and the Lord appeared to him and said, do not go down to Egypt. Been there, done that. You see don't you dare go down to Egypt. There's a famine in the land. He said stay in the land which I shall tell you sojourn in this land and I will be with you and bless you and he says into you and your descendents I will give all these lands and I will establish the oath which I swore to your father Abraham and I will multiply your descendents of the stars of heaven and give your descendents. All these lands and by your descendents. All the nations of the earth shall be blessed. There is the Abraham a covenant repeated Isaac the whole covenant. The same thing you're going to get it all. He said because Abraham obeyed me My charge, my commandments, my statutes, my laws, and so Isaac he says lived in zero when the men of the place asked about his wife.

He said this is Isaac. She is what my sister what she is my sister, for he was afraid to say my wife thinking the men of this place might kill me on account of Rebecca because she's beautiful. What now understand something two things.

One, when Abraham had done this.

Isaac was on the scene. So this wasn't something that I Isaac never saw this before and I'm pretty sure listens carefully. There is no such thing as she's my sister Jean okay is not a gene that says you have to say when you meet somebody that threatens your wife, your sister, I don't think he inherited. It's not a genetic thing we learn to do that. See, I think what happened was that was his father's propensity to pastoral on the radio ministry of fellowship in the world. If you ever missed one of our broadcast or maybe you dislike of the sum of the method one more time. Remember, you can Google a great website called one that's one and you can listen the fellowship and the word online at that website you will find on with today's broadcast but also many of her previous audio program at Fellowship in the Word. We are thankful for those who financially support our ministry and make this broadcast possible. We ask all of our listeners to prayerfully consider how you might help with radio ministry continuous broadcast on this radio station by supporting a monthly with just a one-time gift support for ministry can be sent to Fellowship in the Word. 4600 Clearview Pkwy., Metairie, LA 7006 if you would be interested in hearing today's message in its original format that is is a sermon, the pastor will deliver during a Sunday morning service of fellowship monitored visit our website FVC that FVC and oh LA.O RG at our website you will find hundreds pastoral sermon you can browse through our sermon archives defined sermon series are looking you can search by title. Once you find the messenger looking for. You can listen online work you prefer, you can download the sermon and listen at your own. And remember, you can do all this absolutely free of charge. Once again our website FVC forecaster Bill Gebhardt and Jason Denhardt. Thank you for listening to fellowship in order

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