Genesis 18:1-15 – Is Anything Too Hard For God?

God’s great plan of redemption—his plan to gain a people for his name from all the nations and tribes and languages, a people who trust him and love him and follow him—that plan took a decisive turn with the calling of Abraham and the great promise in Genesis 12:2, “I will bless those who bless you, and him who curses you I will curse; and by you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.”

God waits until it is humanly impossible for the child of the covenant to be born in order to show that it is not by human effort that the covenant people will be created. It is a work of divine and sovereign grace. The formation of a people of God for the sake of his name from all the families of the earth is not a human creation. That is why Ishmael would not qualify as the covenant child. Symbolically he stood for the work of the flesh, the product of Abraham’s presumption and unbelief.

So the question, “Is anything too hard for God?” is a question about God’s ability to create for himself a covenant people against impossible human odds. It is the great missionary question! And the answer of this story is, Yes he can, and, Yes he will. He glorifies his freedom and power by calling into being things that are not, as though they were (Romans 4:17; 1 Corinthians 1:28).

What then shall we say? God’s purpose in redemptive history is to save a people for his name, to bless all the families of the earth, to gather a covenant people from all the nations and tribes and tongues, and to glorify his omnipotence and freedom by doing it where it is humanly impossible.

Can a Muslim be brought to recognize and worship the glory of Jesus Christ the God-man, crucified for sinners and risen as Lord of lords and King of kings? Can the miseries of city-dwellers be reversed and human wrecks become the children of God?

Did God bring forth the child of the covenant from fertile Hagar or barren Sarah? Did God bring forth Jesus from married Elizabeth or virgin Mary? Did he save you from unbelief by your own power or his? Is anything too hard for God?

John Piper

Read Genesis 18:1-15.

Is anything too hard for God? Are any of your concerns, or worries, or financial troubles, or relationship difficulties, or conflicts too hard for God? How can you face these things knowing you have the God on your side with whom nothing is impossible?

Rejoice by Dustin Kensrue

Posted on: February 11, 2016 - 10:00PM

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