Saturday May 15

The Lord appeared to Abram and said, “To your descendants I will give this land.” And there he built an altar to the Lord, who had appeared to him. Genesis 12:7 NKJV

Obedience, Communion, and Worship

Mark well these two things. First, the twice repeated statement “the Lord appeared” to him; secondly the land is set before him as a future possession. Abram sees the King in His beauty and the land that is very far off. He pursued his journey as a stranger and a pilgrim in the light of the glory of the God who had called him, and the blessedness of the land to which he was going. So we read in the New Testament that “he waited for the city which has foundations,” and again, he looked for “a better, that is, a heavenly country” (Heb. 11:10, 16).

Nor is it otherwise with ourselves. It is only as we have Christ Himself before us in His glory, and the blessedness of the heavenly home to which we are going that we shall, in any little measure, bear the stranger and pilgrim character. It is not enough to know the doctrine of Christ, and that heaven lies before us at the end of the journey, but, like the apostle, the desire of each heart should be, “that I may know Him” and “that I may laid hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me” (Phil. 3:10, 12). Taking a place outside this world in answer to the call, it is possible to grow in personal acquaintance with the Lord Himself, for He has said, “He who has My commandments, and keeps them … I will love him, and will manifest Myself to him(Jn. 14:21).

After the Lord appeared to Abraham, we immediately read, “he built an altar.” This surely speaks of worship. In the Epistle to the Hebrews, those who go forth to Christ outside the camp not only take up their pilgrim character, as having no continuing city, but they become worshipers who “continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God” (Heb. 13:13-15).

Hamilton Smith