2001-02-20 - Prophecy Fulfilled
The Prophecy Fulfilled Series, Part 18
Today I would like to pick up where I left off several months ago with the Prophecy Fulfilled Series. I intend to use Tuesdays through at least Easter to expand this series. The former devotionals in this series are available at www.cfdevotionals.org under the Devotional Series icon.
Genesis 17:19 "But God said, 'No, but Sarah your wife shall bear you a son, and you shall call his name Isaac; and I will establish My covenant with him for an everlasting covenant for his descendants after him."
Luke 3:34 The son of Jacob, the son of Isaac, the son of Abraham, the son of Terah, the son of Nahor.
If you are anything like me, when you come to genealogies during your Scripture reading you get about 3-5 verses into them and then skip to the end. It is easy to think little of genealogies because they sure seem dull. However, they demonstrate for us the fulfillment of the line of descendants of Christ which are also often the fulfillment of prophecies in the Old Testament. So they do have a useful nature in that they show us that God's Word never fails and that He fulfills His promises. There is nothing insignificant about that.
You may know the story of Isaac. He was the only son of Abraham and Sarah and was born in their old age. The promise of a son to Abraham through Sarah was given at Mamre and seemed very unlikely to be fulfilled because Abraham was 100 years old when Isaac was born (Genesis 21:5). Sarah was so old when the birth of Isaac was promised that she was "past childbearing," (Genesis 18:11) and she even laughed when she was told she would have a son (Genesis 18:12).
Isaac is also the one who Abraham was told to offer up to God as a burnt offering. How was the promise to be fulfilled if Abraham obeyed God here? But Abraham trusted God and His promise and found that the command to offer Isaac was simply a test to see if Abraham would obey God in all things. These are only a couple of the obstacles that stood in the way of this prophecy being fulfilled.
But God did fulfill the promise and the genealogy is a testament to that fact. It might seem like it is hard to draw anything of a practical application from a genealogy. However, that is not as true as it might seem at first light. We have in fact already done it. God is faithful and He fulfills His promises to His children. "Blessed Be the Lord, who has given rest to His people Israel, according to all that He promised; not one word has failed of all His good promise, which He promised through Moses His servant." 1 Kings 8:56
There are many promises of God to Christians in the Bible. For example, James 1:12 speaks of "the crown of life," "Blessed is a man who perseveres under trial; for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life, which the Lord has promised to those who love Him." When we see that God has been faithful to fulfill one of His promises in Scripture it can only add to our confidence that He will be faithful in the future to fulfill His promises to us. So, in conclusion, those genealogies that we often skip over do have a purpose and can even strengthen and increase our faith in our faithful God.
Soli Deo Gloria,