genesis 17: promise

When Abram was 75 years old, God promised him children. Twenty-four years passed since that conversation, and then God appeared.

“I am God Almighty…” And what would a man do but fall on his face?

God wants Abram to know that He hasn’t forgotten His promise and, in fact, is now going to require him to bear the sign of that promise. And from then on, every time a Hebrew boy is circumcised, it is a reminder of a covenant God made with a man too old to father children.

For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but faith working through love.” – Galatians 5:6

God’s covenant with Abraham served its purpose, but it was temporary. We now have the New Covenant, an eternal covenant of salvation through the finished work of Christ on the cross.

What is the sign of this new covenant God made with a people unable to save themselves?

“And the Holy Spirit also bears witness to us; for after saying, “This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, declares the Lord…” (Hebrews 10:15)

Circumcision bore witness to the covenant God made with Abraham. So today, the Holy Spirit bears witness in us.

God promised Abraham many descendants when Abraham & Sarah were unable to bear children, and that same God promised us salvation when we were unable to save ourselves. I believe the Holy Spirit dwelling in us is a continual sign of that promise.

“He anointed us, set his seal of ownership on us, and put his Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.” – 2Corinthians 1:21-22

The Holy Spirit is our continual reminder that we cannot, but God can. We were barren but will birth nations. We were lost but will inherit eternity.

Because God keeps His promise.

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