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Abraham: Living by Faith – Lesson 1 Father of the Faithful


Hebrews 11: 8 Genesis 12: 1-4 In Romans 4: 16 Abraham is called the “Father of the Faithful.” God chose Abram to become the father of the Israeli people through which He would bring the Savior (Jesus Christ) into the world. God’s plans are always greater than ours. When God called Abram to follow Him in a lifestyle of faith, Abram was only thinking of himself and what God would do for his personal family; but God was thinking of the salvation of the whole world.

Abram’s disobedience

God called Abram to follow Him while he still lived among the idol worshiping people of Ur in Chaldea. Acts 7:2-4 Joshua 24:2 No doubt, Abram was already sickened with their worship of idols, so when God’s call came to him, he was ready to move but told his father what God had said. God had specifically stated for him to leave his father’s house, but Abram could not bring himself to completely obey. Terah, Abram’s father, now took the leadership of their journey. Genesis 11 :31 Abram’s faith was weak and had to grow to maturity before he was to learn that partial obedience is still disobedience. Just like Abram, many people think they are obeying God because they do a portion of what He has told them to do. 

Abram’s delay

Terah’s name means “to delay” and that was exactly what happened. Abram and his family began their 1,500-mile journey to Canaan, but when they came to Haran, which was only half-way to the land God had promised him, they decided to stop and dwell there. The name Haran means a parched, dry place as it is bordered by desert on the south and the west. We do not know how many years they wasted in Haran, but anytime you are not obeying God you are wasting good opportunities. They waited in Haran until Terah died. We are not told why he died but it is obvious that his death was connected with the delay of plans to journey to Canaan. It was only after his father’s death that God began to stir Abram’s spirit again. 

Abram’s development

After his father was dead Abram remembered God’s call to come follow Him to Canaan. Acts 7:2-4 Genesis 12:1 The original call had come to Abram while he lived in Ur among the Chaldeans; God was again reminding Abram of His call to follow Him. God was faithful and gave him another opportunity to obey. Notice that God did not explain things to Abram; He only made him promises. God wanted Abram to learn to live a lifestyle of faith. Faith must begin in our spirits as faith is both a fruit and a gift of the Holy Spirit. I Corinthians 12:9; Galatians 5:22 It is only by obeying the Holy Spirit that we can learn how to live a life of faith. The people in the world around us live by scheming and trying to outwit others but God has called us to live a life of trusting Him to provide everything we need. 


Hebrews 11: 8 God had called Abram to follow Him to a country he had never seen, just as we do not know where God will lead us as by faith, we follow Him. 


Hebrews 11: 11 Abram’s wife Sarai was barren when God promised them a son. God allowed the time of fulfilling His promise to go far beyond her natural child­bearing years to prove to Abram that his son’s birth was a miracle from Him. 


Hebrews 11: 17 If Abram could have understood what God asked of him it would not have been a test. God was using all these things to build and increase his faith. 


Abram was the first man in the Bible to be called a Hebrew. This name means “one who has crossed over.” He crossed over the Euphrates River and began a life of faith following the invisible God. His life of faith required him to “crossover” again and again to live a life that was different from the people around him. 

  1. First, he had to leave his kindred.
  2. Then his homeland.
  3. Then he was forced to leave Egypt.
  4. Then to separate from his nephew Lot.
  5. Then to give up Ishmael.
  6. And finally, to release his beloved son, Isaac.

If we are going to follow God by faith, we will find that God makes the same requirements of us. The world in which we live does not operate by faith, but our God does. Because the world does not live by faith, we often experience loneliness as most people simply will not understand why we live like we do. A life of faith requires us to separate from all evil and devote ourselves to that which is holy. 

Living by faith means leaving an unbelieving world behind!

Lessons in the series Abraham: Living by Faith

Abraham: Living by Faith - Lesson 1 Father of the Faithful

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