One thing that can’t be disputed about relationship with God in the Old Testament times—it was messy. A lot of blood was involved: bulls, goats, pigeons,…prophets.
In one of the most historically and spiritually significant Old Testament sacrifices, Abram (not yet having his name changed to Abraham) slices in half several specimens of the animal kingdom in preparation for a special covenant with this Most High God whom very few people are even aware of any more, much less worship. This is going to be unlike any other offering Abram has participated in, and I suspect he has really no clue what’s about to happen to him next, which is probably a good idea. Typically, if I knew what God was going to allow outside my comfortable box of expectations, I might go running and screaming in the other direction, A.K.A. Jonah. So in some instances, ignorance is bliss, and it behooves me to rely on God’s foreknowledge to take up the slack.
But back to the story…
Before the Most High does His thing, this other thing starts to happen—
“Some vultures swooped down to eat the carcasses, but Abram chased them away.”
Now, why in the world would God think it’s important to put that little detail in His eternal manuscript? Like, who cares? Obviously, I can’t say for sure, but here’s a tidbit I sure get out of it:
The Most High (still His name, BTW) calls me to sacrifices of covenant; that is, He has promises for me that do, in fact, require personal sacrifices on my part. Now, there’s an interesting thought. I like the promises part, not so much the sacrifice clause. The challenge comes in then I have made the commitment, standing guard over that decision to make sure that it is properly maintained. I.E., watch out for the “vultures”:
- Doubt – “hath God really said?”
- Fear – “do you realize the potential consequences?”
- Offense – allowing others’ comments to hurt and cause that “root of bitterness” (UGH)
- Impatience – that “do not grow weary of doing good” is included here
Once I have heard from my Lord to the best I can at this point in my journey (and there are plenty of mighty wise counsels on cultivating that relationship), then being prepared for the opposition becomes part of my task as well. Because they (“the birds of carrion”, well meaning as some of them are) will come.
And these are just a few. Watch out, ‘cuz they lay eggs!
Genesis 15:11 Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.