• W. Austin Gardner

Coming Back to Worship God


Genesis 13:1 And Abram went up out of Egypt, he, and his wife, and all that he had, and Lot with him, into the south. 2 And Abram was very rich in cattle, in silver, and in gold. 3 And he went on his journeys from the south even to Beth-el, unto the place where his tent had been at the beginning, between Beth-el and Hai; 4 Unto the place of the altar, which he had made there at the first: and there Abram called on the name of the Lord. 5 And Lot also, which went with Abram, had flocks, and herds, and tents. 6 And the land was not able to bear them, that they might dwell together: for their substance was great, so that they could not dwell together. 7 And there was a strife between the herdmen of Abram’s cattle and the herdmen of Lot’s cattle: and the Canaanite and the Perizzite dwelled then in the land. 8 And Abram said unto Lot, Let there be no strife, I pray thee, between me and thee, and between my herdmen and thy herdmen; for we be brethren. 9 Is not the whole land before thee? separate thyself, I pray thee, from me: if thou wilt take the left hand, then I will go to the right; or if thou depart to the right hand, then I will go to the left. 10 And Lot lifted up his eyes, and beheld all the plain of Jordan, that it was well watered every where, before the Lord destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah, even as the garden of the Lord, like the land of Egypt, as thou comest unto Zoar. 11 Then Lot chose him all the plain of Jordan; and Lot journeyed east: and they separated themselves the one from the other. 12 Abram dwelled in the land of Canaan, and Lot dwelled in the cities of the plain, and pitched his tent toward Sodom. 13 But the men of Sodom were wicked and sinners before the Lord exceedingly.

14 And the Lord said unto Abram, after that Lot was separated from him, Lift up now thine eyes, and look from the place where thou art northward, and southward, and eastward, and westward: 15 For all the land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed for ever. 16 And I will make thy seed as the dust of the earth: so that if a man can number the dust of the earth, then shall thy seed also be numbered. 17 Arise, walk through the land in the length of it and in the breadth of it; for I will give it unto thee. 18 Then Abram removed his tent, and came and dwelt in the plain of Mamre, which is in Hebron, and built there an altar unto the Lord.

  • Warren Wiersbe said, “A faith that can’t be tested can’t be trusted.”

  • God’s people will always be tested. I Peter 1:7 That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ: Job 23:10 But he knoweth the way that I take: When he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold.

  • Your faith is tested by the circumstances you face, the people in your life, and your things, material goods

  • When you are tested, don't run, don't go to Egypt but stay where God has put you until He tells you to move

  • The will of God will never lead you where the grace of God cannot keep you.

  • In trouble, our question is usually, how can I get out of this when it should be what can I get out of this. How is God going to use this to build my faith?

  • Someone said, “Faith is living without scheming.”

  1. Abram had allowed (circumstances) problems to drive him out of God’s will Genesis 13:1 And Abram went up out of Egypt, he, and his wife, and all that he had, and Lot with him, into the south.

  2. Financial fears had driven his life instead of his worship Genesis 12:10 And there was a famine in the land: and Abram went down into Egypt to sojourn there; for the famine was grievous in the land.

  3. Just before Abram had been worshipping but not he is running to the world in fear

  4. He will seek solutions for his problems on his own

  5. He will try and solve his problems the way everyone else does

  6. As soon as you decide to serve God, believe Him, you will be tested

  7. Faith that is not tested is not to be trusted

  8. Don't ask how to get out of the situation you are in, rather ask God what you need to learn from it

  9. The beauty is that Abram comes back from Egypt and returns to where he was 3 And he went on his journeys from the south even to Beth-el, unto the place where his tent had been at the beginning, between Beth-el and Hai; 4 Unto the place of the altar, which he had made there at the first: and there Abram called on the name of the Lord.

  10. Big lessons for us to learn

  11. We are to run towards the Lord when we are in the middle of a mess

  12. There is no mention of Abram building another altar or seeking the Lord or His counsel

  13. Actually, we see him leave the altar, not build another, and then finally return to where he had an altar

  14. Expect that things will not go well and that you will be afraid and need to turn to the Lord

  15. Remember that often the first thing to go is your time with the Lord as you struggle to maintain your life and lifestyle

  16. You can start over but there will be lingering effects

  17. Your quick journey into the flesh affects others in your family

  18. When you wake up get back where you are supposed to be

  19. You can't fix in your own power what God means to work into your life

  20. Abram’s time in Egypt had its effect

  21. He made money and got rich 2 And Abram was very rich in cattle, in silver, and in gold.

  22. Egypt is where he gets his handmaid he will later make a mistake with Genesis 16:1 Now Sarai Abram’s wife bare him no children: and she had an handmaid, an Egyptian, whose name was Hagar.

  23. Lot had gone to Egypt with Abram and also got rich 5 And Lot also, which went with Abram, had flocks, and herds, and tents.

  24. Egypt’s success, riches, etc got into Lot so much that he will risk everything to keep his position, his possessions, his power 6 And the land was not able to bear them, that they might dwell together: for their substance was great, so that they could not dwell together.

  25. Their riches was causing strife 7 And there was a strife between the herdmen of Abram’s cattle and the herdmen of Lot’s cattle: and the Canaanite and the Perizzite dwelled then in the land.

  26. Abram didn't want there to be strife 8 And Abram said unto Lot, Let there be no strife, I pray thee, between me and thee, and between my herdmen and thy herdmen; for we be brethren.

  27. For Abram, the family was more important than the things

  28. He wanted family peace more than prosperity

  29. Abram offers Lot anything he wants 9 Is not the whole land before thee? separate thyself, I pray thee, from me: if thou wilt take the left hand, then I will go to the right; or if thou depart to the right hand, then I will go to the left.

  30. Lot is looking for what will make him happy and successful 10 And Lot lifted up his eyes, and beheld all the plain of Jordan, that it was well watered every where, before the Lord destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah, even as the garden of the Lord, like the land of Egypt, as thou comest unto Zoar.

  31. He sees that the land looks like Egypt

  32. He sees that it is a place of abundance

  33. He chooses comfort and convenience over fellowship, family, and walking with a man of God

  34. Big lessons to learn

  35. You can have fun and make money in the world for a while

  36. It is ok to have riches but when they have you then you are in trouble

  37. It would seem that Abram messed up but got right.

  38. The money doesn’t seem to own Abram

  39. The money and desire for things took over the life of Lot

  40. Lot, will eventually sacrifice his family on the altar of this world and you may be headed down that same road

  41. When you spend too much time looking at Egypt you might just get to wanting what Egypt has to offer

  42. The desire for things will separate Lot from the man of God, Abram, and will lead to much hurt in his life

  43. Lot pictures what happen when materialism takes over your life

  44. It was Abram that took Lot down to Egypt

  45. It was Abram that was mentoring Lot whether intentionally or unintentionally

  46. Abram makes mistakes but recovers. Lot doesn’t

  47. Lot learns to have a big business, big money but he allows it to take over his life

  48. Lot separates from the very best influence in his life 11 Then Lot chose him all the plain of Jordan; and Lot journeyed east: and they separated themselves the one from the other.

  49. His love for Egypt causes Lot to head towards another sinful place 12 Abram dwelled in the land of Canaan, and Lot dwelled in the cities of the plain, and pitched his tent toward Sodom. 13 But the men of Sodom were wicked and sinners before the Lord exceedingly.

  50. Maybe he thought he could handle it

  51. He could take advantage of it without it hurting him or his family

  52. He was just meeting his families needs

  53. Big lessons

  54. Realize that this world wants your heart and life and will take it if given a chance I John 2:15 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.

  55. You are influencing lives all around you. You do not walk alone. What you do will have an impact on others

  56. Don't let money, jobs, positions, hunger for stuff get you away from godly influences

  57. Get all of Egypt out of your eye and your heart

  58. If you have messed up then get back up and get it straight

  59. Abram returns to the blessings and the promises of God

  60. Even though Abram has made a mess of things God is still ready to extend grace and continue working in his life

  61. Lot has left and taken the best of everything for himself 14 And the Lord said unto Abram, after that Lot was separated from him, Lift up now thine eyes, and look from the place where thou art northward, and southward, and eastward, and westward:

  62. God gives Abram the promise again 15 For all the land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed for ever. 16 And I will make thy seed as the dust of the earth: so that if a man can number the dust of the earth, then shall thy seed also be numbered.

  63. God makes Abram a forever promise of the land again

  64. God again promises him a super large family

  65. Abram is to get up and walk over his land acting in faith that God is really going to give it to him 17 Arise, walk through the land in the length of it and in the breadth of it; for I will give it unto thee.

  66. Obviously, the promise was not conditional on Abram’s behavior but on God’s promise and power

  67. Your salvation is not a conditional promise but rather unconditional, one sided-God saves you with no effort of your own

  68. Abram comes back and builds an altar again 18 Then Abram removed his tent, and came and dwelt in the plain of Mamre, which is in Hebron, and built there an altar unto the Lord.

  69. Big lessons

  70. He will never leave you or forsake you

  71. When you aren’t faithful He is still faithful

  72. God’s promise of blessing may not come from the most obvious sources

  73. God’s promises and blessings come without the heartache that Lot will experience

  74. Rest in what God has promised and how He will accomplish what He promises

  75. Realize that your life and testimony have great consequences

  76. Abram’s trip to Egypt will affect the rest of his life

  77. Hagar will be a source of embarrassment and family strife

  78. Lot will get in trouble and have to be rescued

  79. Lot’s family will be decimated

  80. You can come back when you have messed up and God will continue to work in your life

  81. Egypt has a great pull and you must do all in your power to avoid the world capturing your heart

  82. The love of money is the root of all evil

  83. God’s Word can be trusted

  84. Your walk with God is far more important than anything that this world has to offer

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