The Abrahamic Covenant (Genesis 15)

Abraham Study Guide (Week 5)

SUGGESTED VERSES FOR MEMORIZATION & MEDITATION

And he believed the LORD, and he counted it to him as righteousness.  (Genesis 15:6)

But the words “it was counted to him” were not written for his sake alone, but for ours also. It will be counted to us who believe in him who raised from the dead Jesus our Lord, who was delivered up for our trespasses and raised for our justification. (Romans 4:23-25)

OPENING THOUGHT

We continue to see the man of faith, Abram, grow in his walk with the LORD. Starting out as a worshipper of false gods who was probably considered cursed, Abram trusted God by going wherever He told him to go. Even though we saw Abram show a lack of faith by selling his wife to Pharaoh to save himself, God remained faithful.

Now, after the major military conflict of last week, we see a different side of Abram. He is exhausted and afraid. He’s fearful that God will not follow through with His promise of giving Abram an offspring. Though his questioning of God displays a degree of doubt or lack of faith, God does not chide Abram; instead, the LORD lovingly gives Abram a visual and physical covenant.

This covenant is today called the Abrahamic Covenant. It is one in the series of major promises and agreements that the LORD makes with His beloved people. Through the animal sacrifice, God made an official agreement with Abram, with no conditions on Abram’s part. God took full responsibility for the fulfillment of the covenant. Today, the Abrahamic Covenant reminds us of the New Covenant in Christ. Just as the covenant with Abram was sealed with a sacrifice, the New Covenant was sealed with the ultimate sacrifice, the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. It is only because of that sacrifice that both Abram and us are now counted as righteous.

Read verse 1 and discuss the following.

  1. Following the warfare of chapter 14, Abram is weary and fearful, but God graciously responds by promising to be his shield and reward. Can you remember a time when you were exhausted and anxious? How did the LORD bring you through that time?

Read verses 2-5 and discuss the following.

  1. Abram is honest with God about his frustration of not yet having an offspring. God’s response shows that He is big enough to handle our doubts and questions. What are some doubt or questions that you have wrestled with concerning God? How has the LORD helped you with those things?

Read verse 6 and discuss the following.

  1. Abram had faith in God, and the LORD counted Abram as righteous. How is this a picture of the gospel today?

Read verses 7-11 and discuss the following.

  1. Abram wants visual proof of God’s trustworthiness, and God prepares a covenant ceremony. How is this similar to our observance of Lord’s Supper? How does it relate to the gospel?

Read verses 12-16 and discuss the following.

  1. God warns Abram that his descendants will only inherit the land after much suffering. How does God often use suffering to refine and sanctify His people? Do you have personal examples of this?

Read verses 17-21 and discuss the following.

  1. God alone completes the covenant by walking through the animals, taking the responsibility of upholding the covenant completely upon Himself (as well as the punishment if it is not upheld). How does this allude to the gospel?

ACTIONS TO CONSIDER

  • Recall Jesus’ death in your place for your breaking of God’s cov­enant. Believe and thank Him for the forgiveness of your sins, whether for the first time or thousandth time.
  • Consider any fears, worries, or doubts. Bring them honestly before God in pray, trusting that He is big enough to handle our questions and doubts.
  • Pray for brothers and sisters to have strength during times of fear, anxiety, and doubt.
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