FEET OF CLAY

Scripture Reading: Genesis 20:1-13

“Then Abimilech called Abraham in and said, ‘What have you done to us? How have I wronged you that you have brought such great guilt upon me and my kingdom? You have done things to me that should not be done.'” (Genesis 20:9)

Have you ever had someone you deeply respect let you down? You find out something about a person you admire that really disappoints you. In our passage today, we see another very disappointing event in the life of Abraham. It is chapters like this one that give another proof of the divine inspiration of Scripture. If I was writing the story of Abraham’s life, I probably would not include this event. God put is here for a reason. The Scripture gives us an honest view of humanity — even the greatest characters in redemptive history such as Abraham, David and Paul were sinners. We all have feet of clay.

After the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, Abraham journey south to the land of Gerar. It is understandable why he did not want to remain in the region of Sodom and Gomorrah. How unpleasant it would have been to see the ruins of those cities and to smell the sulfur. So he moved to Gerar — the area that would later become the land of the Philistines. A powerful king reigned in the land, whose name was Abimilech.

Abraham again failed to trust God. He was afraid of Abimilech and asked Sarah to say that she was his sister in order to protect himself. One would have thought that Abraham had learned his lesson the first time he did this. It is amazing how easy it is to forget the consequences of sin.

As in the case the first time Abraham did this, the Lord protected Sarah. He struck Abimilech with some kind of illness. Then God spoke to Abimilech in a dream — “You are as good as dead because of the woman you have taken; she is a married woman” (v. 3). Abimilech released Sarah at once and rebuked Abraham for what he had done (vs. 8-10).

We all have feet of clay. We have all had moral failures and we will most likely disappoint one another. Even godly people as prone to sin. We tend to have recurring sins. All of us have our pet sins that we struggle with. We may attempt to justify our sins just as Abraham did (vs. 11-13). We may even put others in jeopardy when we sin as Abraham put Sarah and Abimilech in jeopardy.

The root cause of Abraham’s sin was that he did not trust God. He did not believe God would take care of him. Often this is the case with us. We fail to trust God and turn to our own feeble efforts to protect ourselves. When we do, the consequences may be painful.

Lord Jesus, I confess that there have been many times when I failed to trust You. I took matters into my own hands and made a mess of things. Thank You for being gracious and loving to me. I don’t deserve Your love, but am so grateful for it. Give me the strength to resist sin and to live for You this day.

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