When you talk about great moments in history, these are three of the greatest.
1.  Abraham’s covenant with God
2.  Joseph’s deliverance of his family
3.  Moses’ exodus across the Red Sea

Each of these are mere moments in history that profoundly shaped the world that we now live in.
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Mose’s exodus, if it did not happen as recorded, eliminates the entire history of the Jewish nation. The exodus stands on the shoulders of Joseph, the savior of the tribe of Judah. His imprisonment and years of slavery were sovereignly used to deliver the Jews from famine in Canaan to essential slavery in Egypt, until God appointed a deliverer.

The unlikeliness of all is Abraham, an idol worshipping citizen of modern day Turkey and Syria, who met the true God, and obeyed Him. Abraham then became exactly what God declared, a father of many nations whose children could not be numbered.

The results of these three events are the foundation of modern day Israel.
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It all started with Abraham. A day comes when God speaks to Abram, who would become Abraham, and his simple idolatress life would now change the course of history. He would become the “Father of Faith.”

But not before that faith would be drop forged by the trials, testings and patience of God.

You may be in a time where your choice seems simple enough, but the difference is that today seems like a crucible, a place of refining. The choice is either weather the storm, submit to the change, let go of the dross that seems so important, and allow God to change you just like He did to Abraham.
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Opening Scripture:
Genesis 17:1  Now when Abram was ninety-nine years old, the Lord appeared to Abram and said to him, “I am God Almighty; walk before Me, and be blameless.”

For the first time, God introduces Himself to a man by the name “El Shaddai,” which means “The Mighty One of Resource and Sufficiency.”

Up to this point, Abraham figures he needed to meet his own needs, but now God declares Himself as the Mighty One who meets the needs.

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Then God establishes a covenant with Abraham.

Genesis 17:7-8  I will establish My covenant between Me and you and your descendants after you throughout their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and to your descendants after you. I will give to you and to your descendants after you, the land of your sojournings, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession; and I will be their God.”

God promises Abraham:
– This covenant will last forever.
– God will never leave and will always be the Mighty One of resources and sufficiency for him and all his descendants.
– God will give him all the land of Canaan for an everlasting possession.
– God will always be his descendants’ God with the same provisions, never to be broken.

And Abraham’s part of this covenant is to circumcise every male in his family.
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Here’s where it gets a bit delicate. The cutting away of the flesh from a man’s manhood is one of the most humbling, painful, and altering events.

It represents submission to God at the highest level.
– It is the removal of the useless.
– It is the humbling and submission of the independent heart.
– It is the key to receiving from God.
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Look at the promise again.

Genesis 17:15-16  I will establish My covenant between Me and you and your]descendants after you throughout their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and to your descendants after you. I will give to you and to your descendants after you, the land of your sojournings, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession; and I will be their God.”

Does this sound familiar? Abraham was worn out, tired, done with adventure, and ready to settle. Ishmael was the solution – my plans, my ways, and my strength.

When God said no, it’s not My way, Abraham said to God,
Genesis 17:18  “Oh that Ishmael might live before You!”

Abraham was willing to settle for second best or good enough. The waiting, hoping, believing, and walk of faith was not for him.

Abraham had the whole world in his hands and didn’t know it. God was testing, trying, and forging his faith, but he didn’t care.
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Abraham chose God. Issac, the promised son, was not conceived until Abraham was circumcised and the flesh was permanently removed.

Until a man submits to God’s all sufficient Lordship, he will never have God’s best.

Change your future; change the generations going forward. Submit to God.
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Questions:
– How have past struggles strengthened your faith?
– What struggles right now are forging your faith?
– How do you think God can use those struggles for His glory?1.

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