Lesson 5: October 1, 2017

God’s Covenant with Abram: Genesis 15:1-6, 17-21

 


Teaching Strategy: Ask volunteers to identify promises fulfilled and promises waiting for fulfillment that God has given to individuals, to the congregation, and to the wider church. Then invite participants to discuss: What has God promised to God’s people? What does it mean to trust that God’s promises will be fulfilled? In the midst of a world in turmoil, how do – or should – Christians live differently because they believe God’s promises?

 

The covenant that God made with Abram included two specific promises: the promise of many descendants and the promise of land. Christians affirm that Jesus Christ is the new covenant that God has made with God’s people. In Him, believers are born into new life.

To connect the covenant promises to life today requires considering the nature of God’s promises, but also what is going on in the world. At this moment, the crises confronting the church, the nation, and the world may seem overwhelming. Consider these examples: the massive destruction of recent storms in Texas, Florida, Puerto Rico, and the Caribbean islands; the loss of life wrought by earthquakes in Mexico; the threat of war between the U.S. and North Korea; genocide in Myanmar; the growth of world hunger; the fear of deportation for 800,000 or more people in the U.S. who may soon lose the government protections given them through DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals); the inability of legislators to agree on how to ensure health care and health insurance for all; and/or the increased rhetoric and violence against Blacks, Jews, Muslims, gay and lesbian individuals, not only in this country but around the world.

In the face of storms, death, destruction, war, terrorism, racism, and bigotry… in the face of fear, hostility, anxiety, and despair, what does it mean to trust that God’s promises will be fulfilled? How do – or should – Christians live differently because they believe God’s promises?


Fall 2017 Theme: Covenant

Unifying Principle: Desperate from past disappointments and failures, people fear a continued downward spiral of unfulfilled dreams and goals. How can people find hope to reach fulfillment in life? Although childless, Abram based his hope for descendants on the promises of his covenant with the faithful God.

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Posted on: September 25, 2017, by : Sharon Harris-Ewing