The Most Important Promise

The Most Important Promise

Go forth from your country, and from your relatives and from your father’s house, to the land which I will show you.
–Genesis 12:1

God called Abraham for special purpose. In Genesis 12:1, He said, “Go forth from your country, and from your relatives and from your father’s house, to the land which I will show you.” Now, God’s original call came to Abraham while he was living in the city of Ur. According to Acts 7:2-4, he left Ur with his family and went as far as Haran, where he resided for about fifteen years. Then God called down to Abraham and said, “Remember Me? I want you to leave Haran and go on to Canaan, like I originally commanded.”

God wanted Abraham to leave what was familiar to him. Not only that, He said, “I want you to leave your relatives behind and separate yourself from your father’s house.” Why was this important? Abraham’s father, Terah, provided for his family, but he was an obstacle in Abraham’s spiritual life. It was Terah that kept Abraham in Haran instead of going to Canaan.

The same could be true of you as well. The Bible says we are to honor our fathers and our mothers, but many times people take that too far. As a pastor, I have seen this so many times. Somebody knows they need to publicly proclaim their faith in Christ. Or they need to go through believer’s baptism. Or they need to leave the church they have grown up in and be a part of a Bible-believing church. But they say, “Pastor, it would just break Mama’s heart. She raised me in that church, and it would be such a slap in the face if we were to join another church.”

Look at what Jesus said in Luke 14:26: “If anyone comes to Me, and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be My disciple.” Jesus was not talking about emotionally hating your father and mother. He was saying when it comes to a choice between obeying God and honoring your parents, you are to obey God every time. That is what He said to Abram, in essence: “You are going to have to separate yourself, even from your father, and obey Me.”

And God gave him this promise for his obedience: “I will make you a great nation, and I will bless you, and make your name great; and so you shall be a blessing; and I will bless those who bless you, and the one who curses you I will curse. And in you all the families of the earth will be blessed” (Genesis 12:2-3). To me, these are the most important verses in all of Scripture. The Bible is the story of God’s fulfillment of His promise to Abraham–the promise to send a Savior, the Messiah, through his line. The Messiah is the ultimate blessing through which anyone who trusts in Him will receive salvation. That was the purpose for which God called Abraham.


Today’s devotion is excerpted from “One Pilgrim’s Progress” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2009.

Scripture quotations taken from the (NASB®) New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. All rights reserved.