RUNNING HEAD: Guided By a Promise
History Guided by a Promise
Old Testament History
God made a promise with Abraham. His promise was to make Abraham and his descendants into a great nation. God did not just hand this nation over to Abraham, first He tested him and the descendants to make sure they would follow Him and do His will. Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph were faithful to God and realized everything that happened to them happened because it was God’s will. God’s covenant was simple, if Abraham and his descendants would obey God then in the end God would give Abraham and his descendants all the property, power, and wealth that they wanted. The common ground for all of the patriarchs was to live by the Torah and believe in God’s promises. They had to be willing to give up everything to let someone else prosper, and trust in God’s righteousness to carry them through times of hardship and suffering (Harrelson, 1977).
God chose Abraham to be the start of this new nation not because he was without sin and followed God the way one should, but because He had to start somewhere. The people during Abraham’s time worshipped idols and when God came to him and told him to leave his family and friends and travel to an unknown land, the first thing he had to realize was that God was with him everywhere. Abraham could talk to Him whenever he wanted to and wherever he wanted to. Abraham left all that was familiar to him and began travelling, living a simple life. He did not cause problems with other areas; he was peaceful and set up good relations with the people in the areas he travelled. As Abraham got older he did wonder how his people was to become a great nation when he had no children of his own because Sarah was barren. God promised him that Sarah would have a son and that his name would be Isaac (Gen. 17:19). Once that promise was fulfilled it set in motion the original promise that God would make Abraham’s descendants a great nation. There was nothing...