Pondering the Word – Genesis 21:33
This past Sunday I had the privilege to preach at Ridgecrest. I looked at some of the names of God that were revealed to Abram (Abraham) over the almost 40 years that took place between Genesis 14 and Genesis 22. I had time to talk about 4 of them to some degree:
- El Elyon – God Most High (Genesis 14)
- Adonai – Lord (Genesis 15)
- El Shaddai – God Almighty (Genesis 17)
- Jehovah Jireh – God Our Provider (Genesis 22)
There was one name that I did not get to develop due to time that I will say a few things about here.
El Olam – The Everlasting God (Genesis 21:33) What would the revelation of this name have meant to Abraham and what does it mean to us? There has NEVER been a time when God was not. It is hard for me to wrap my puny mind around this. God has always been! If this is true (and I believe it is) then there are serious repercussions concerning how we view the world. Our postmodern world tends to leave God out of the equation. This has resulted in a world that does not value life the same way that a God-centered worldview does. Here are two specific ways:
1) Evolution has become the accepted teaching in our schools even though it is just a theory that has many holes (aka missing links) in it. Evolution devalues human life because it puts us on the same level as monkeys and obliterates any intrinsic purpose in our existence. Whereas an Intelligent Design worldview proclaims that we are created in the image of God for the purposes of God. Most of the post baby boomer generations have grown up being taught they are the result of a mutation. It is no wonder, then, that so many people in our world feel like mutants and therefore act like mutants. You do not have to go any farther than our schools to see the horrific consequences of a worldview that eliminates God.
2) Abortion is another issue where we have seen the devaluation of life. It is the logical consequence of a world that does not believe that God is responsible for life. It has been said that abortion is the “hidden holocaust” of the last 40+ years. Unborn babies have been treated as sub human; as a problem that needs to be dealt with; as an unfortunate inconvenience. It is impossible to imagine how many great thinkers and great artists and great humanitarians and great teachers have been denied the right to life. Our world would no doubt be very very different if the 3000+ abortions per day (just in the US) had never taken place.
Belief in El Olam, The Everlasting God, is a game changer for humanity. It was for Abraham. It should be for us as well.