Abraham's Call Part 2
by John Lowe
(Laurens SC, USA)
It may even be that you were called on to separate yourself from your whole family because there were none who respected God. You have suffered loss for Christ’s sake. Even now, you may be passing through some difficult times. You may be saying to yourself, “This isn’t right; should I stop expressing my faith?” Friends, if your father, mother, sisters and brothers forsake you, don’t worry, because the Lord will never leave you or forsake you. Remember, Jesus said, "He that loveth father and mother, and house and lands, more than me, is not worthy of me." You must be willing to give up everything for Christ’s sake; so be prepared. If friends and family will not come along with you in faith; come alone. Doesn’t it say, "Come ye out from among them; be ye separate…?" Be an Abraham. Leave everything, and if you do this in faith, you will receive your reward. He is able, and He has promised to give you in this life ten times more than you lose for him, and in the world to come life everlasting.
Some Christians, who are not called to endure this trial when they are young, frequently have to bear something like it when they are older. I know several people who had been in a church all their lives, and then suddenly they saw the light that their church did not preach the truth. Their family and friends attended that same place of worship, and they couldn’t accept any criticism of the doctrine of their church. So now there is a split in the family; a mother and daughter no longer speak. And one young man can no longer visit his grandmother because she is hurt by him changing churches. This saddens the hearts of those who know and love Jesus.
Some of these matters, which split families and churches, are not that important, so what are we to do? Should we testify only about those things that we agree with others about, and hold our tongue about the rest? No. Whatever you believe, that’s what you should do. There may be truths that are non-essential to our salvation, but there are no non-essential truths as far as our conscience is concerned. Every truth is essential, and we must never hold our tongue. But let’s follow the Lord in every respect. No matter who turns their back on you, never abandon the truth, because along with Abraham's trial and Abraham's faith, you shall have Abraham's honor and Abraham's reward.
Today, there is a great calamity that tests the faith of many of God’s people.
They have been successful in business or they have been careful with their money so that they were able to acquire wealth, a magnificent home, and luxurious possessions. But, all of a sudden, misfortune comes and takes it all away. Then they may say, “Why me; what am I going to do?” But God will comfort them, and their faith will grow stronger, and God will reward their faith. One of the problems with growing old is that sometimes you have to go on with your life, even though you don’t know where you’re going. Isn’t it true, when you’re young, you go wherever you want, but when you are old, others take you where you don’t want to go, or like Abraham, you may not know where you are going? But I don’t believe you should complain because if the father of the faithful had to do it, should the sons and daughters complain. No, where ever God in his providence guides you, let it be your joy to know that he is too wise to make a mistake—too good to be unkind.
As I get older, I think about death more often. It’s a time that must come to each of us. It is a time, when in a certain sense, we must leave this world, not knowing much about the place to we are going to. The hour is coming when you and I will lie silently on our beds, and the message will come—"Get up, and leave your home, leave the city in which you have lived and worked, leave your friends, and leave your children. Get up, and take your last journey." And what do I know about the journey? I have read a little about heaven in the Bible, but the Lord has chosen to make its whereabouts a secret. And He has not told us much about what it’s like. We know about death, but what comes after death? No one has ever returned to tell. Well, be that as it may, we will leave, not knowing where we are going, but we do know that He is with us, so we don’t need to fear any evil. We will be going to our Father's house, wherever it’s at. We will be going to our heavenly Father's caring home, where Jesus is: to that royal city which has foundations, whose builder and maker is God. This will be our last journey because we will live forever with Him whom we love. We will take our last journey, and we will not be afraid to take it because God is our refuge and strength: our helper in the hour of trouble and at our death.
Just one last point, which is that I pray that you Will FOLLOW AFTER THE LEADING OF THE HOLY SPIRIT, AND DO WHAT HE SAYS, AND GO WHEREVER HE LEADS.
Let’s follow the Good Shepherd because he has a perfect right to lead us wherever he pleases. We are not our own, we are bought with a price. Let this be our saying, "Do what You want Lord, and even if they kill me, I will trust in You.” We are not true to our profession of being Christians, if we pick and choose for ourselves, what we do. Picking and choosing are great enemies of our submission to Christ. In fact, they are not at all consistent with it. If we are really our Lord’s Christians, let’s say this, "It is the Lord, let him do whatever He desires. "The next thing we know is that we should submit to Christ, because wherever He may lead us, even if we don’t know where it is; we do know one thing, we know with whom we go, we do not know the road to take, but we do know the guide. We may feel that the journey is a long one, but we are quite sure that the everlasting arms that carry us are strong enough, even if the journey is long and dangerous. Another reason why we should follow all the commands of God faithfully is this because we can be sure that all will end well. Things may not appear to be going well, while they are going on, but they will end well. One thing that I know for sure is whether we experience prosperity or hard times, sickness or health; whether we meet friends or enemies, popularity or hatred, His purpose will be worked out, and that purpose will be for our good.
Just one last point; let us put our trust in our wonder-working God.
When we recall what He has already done for us, how He saved us and has kept us all these years, we can be confident that He will take us the rest of the way to our heavenly home. When I recall everything He has done, I can only hold up my hands and exclaim, "What hath God wrought!" So, should we doubt the future? No, because God is with us and the God of Abraham is our refuge. I pray that God will give to every one of you a solid trust in His providence, so that you may go onward for Christ, even if you don’t know where you’re going.
And if anyone here today doesn’t believe in God, may you be led to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior, and afterwards to trust your God, and leave all your concerns in his hands. May God bless His word, and may you go with God, trusting Him for all things, for I know that He will bless you and keep you.