IF YOU CAN COUNT THE STARS
"And he brought him forth abroad, and said, Look now toward heaven, and tell the stars, if thou be able to number them: and he said unto him, So shall thy seed be. And he believed in the LORD; and he counted it to him for righteousness. And he said unto him, I am the LORD that brought thee out of Ur of the Chaldees, to give thee this land to inherit it."
As we begin to look at these verses we find that the LORD took the initiative with Abram. It was not Abram asking to be moved out of Ur of the Chaldees. Neither was it Abram asking God to allow him to be the head of a people whose number would be as the stars. Abram did not ask God for the land of Canaan. All of this was God’s idea.
God is going to raise up a nation from Abram who will bear His name to the world. The covenant God made with Abram is still being fulfilled. If God raises up a nation from Abram, there needs to be one who will walk by faith, and he will need a homeland.
THE CALL OF ABRAM
Genesis 12:1‑2, "Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will shew thee: And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing:"
We observe that the LORD said to Abram, “Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee. . .” Abram had a home. He had a land. He was in the midst of his family. God’s call to Abram interrupted all of this. He was called to leave a land he already possessed. He was called to separate himself from his father’s house. The LORD promised him a land that flowed with milk and honey. God is doing all the talking.
God still speaks to His people. He remains the Planner of our lives. It is completely out of keeping to go out and do something for the Lord, and after it is done, say, “Now Lord, how do you like that.” With God it is never us who take the initiative. God is working out a plan for His creation. So God called Abram to leave his Land and go to a land that God would give Him. God’s call is an important call and we all need to listen for His “still small voice” and follow its directions all the way.
THE REVELATION OF GOD TO ABRAM
"And he brought him forth abroad, and said, Look now toward heaven, and tell the stars, if thou be able to number them: and he said unto him, So shall thy seed be.” This was a promise that would stagger the mind. God said, “Look now toward heaven, and tell the stars, if thou be able to number them: and he said unto him, So shall thy seed be.”
God gave Abram an impossibility to believe. The LORD was not appealing to Abram’s reason. What God said to Abram here was enough to knock him off his feet. In fact, with no disrespect, Abram could have laughed this one off. God knew what He would do and He was willing to tell Abram ahead of time. Someone has said, “Faith needs an impossibility to overcome.” We are always dealing with impossibilities when we walk with God. God is the God of the impossible. Genesis 18:14, “Is any thing too hard for the LORD? At the time appointed I will return unto thee, according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son.”
God made man to walk with Him and serve and glorify Him. God is a Spirit and cannot be seen. So God created man to walk with Him by faith. That is still true.
ABRAM’S RESPONSE TO GOD’S REVELATION
Genesis 15:5‑6, "And he brought him forth abroad, and said, Look now toward heaven, and tell the stars, if thou be able to number them: and he said unto him, So shall thy seed be. And he believed in the LORD; and he counted it to him for righteousness."
While this is not the first time faith is exercised in God’s Word, it is the first time that God revealed in His Word that faith is counted for righteousness. And this is to be the example for us to follow through the Scripture. It is not what man does that God counts for righteousness. It is an unqualified faith in what God says that is to be counted for righteousness.
Romans 4:5‑7, "But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness. Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works, Saying, Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered."
OUR RESPONSE TO GOD’S REVELATION
We are called to walk with a God that we cannot see. Faith in what God says is the only sight that we have. God is life itself and anyone who has eternal life has God. God has chosen to dwell within the believing saint. Ephesians 1:13, "In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,"
We are not to go around trying to see God. We see His works in all creation. We are brought into a fellowship with His Holy Spirit when we are saved and He will remain with us until He gives us our new bodies that are like His glorified body. Then faith will give place to sight.
May the Lord bless these words to our hearts.