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On The Edge // Part 4 // August 19, 2018 // CAPSTONE CHURCH SERMON

We are in the midst of a series called, “On the Edge” – an exposition of the excitement of following God. We have been watching Abram better known to us as Abraham and learning from the life of faith that he lived. A word from God – a long journey – challenging circumstances – all have been a part of Abram’s story to this point. All are a part of every life that chooses to trust and obey the Lord. Today, we look at Abram’s first real miracle and his first meeting with the king of the land.
 
The story begins with a bad decision. When given the opportunity by Abram to choose what part of Canaan he would settle in, Lot chose by what looked good. He settled in the Jordan Valley because it was lush. The cities of Sodom and Gomorrah were located there and the people of that area were exceedingly wicked. After a period of time, a rebellion started. The kings of that area decided that they would rebel against their overlord. The following year, the overlord from the north and a coalition of four of his vassals came to subdue Sodom and Gomorrah and restore order there. The overlord and his armies entered the territory and began to wreak havoc. They destroyed the kingdoms of the giants in that area and moved on to the Dead Sea to face the kingdoms of Sodom and Gomorrah and those allied with them. The armies of the overlord won the victory and carried away captive the goods and people of Sodom and Gomorrah including Lot.
 
Now when Abram heard that his brother was taken captive, he armed his three hundred and eighteen trained servants who were born in his own house, and went in pursuit as far as Dan. Genesis 14:14
 
For all of you who are worried that God cannot overcome the odds against you: 318 men against an army of giant slayers, which had to be greater in size than 318! Abram defeats these armies. This is the first true miracle in the land! In truth, a shepherd and a band of servants becomes the most feared force in the land! When returning from the victory, two kings come to meet Abram in the Valley of the Kings. One is the king of Sodom: A natural king. He tells Abram to take all the money and good for himself. What an opportunity to increase his worldly wealth and influence. In effect, he said, “If you play your cards right……” The second king was named Melchizedek. He was king of Salem, later to be called Jerusalem.
 
Then Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine; he was priest of God Most High. And he blessed him and said:
“Blessed be Abram of God Most High, Possessor of heaven and earth; and blessed be God Most High, Who has delivered your enemies into your hand.” And he gave him a tithe of all. Genesis 14:18-20
 
Theologians have long debated who this king was. But, the book of Hebrews gives us revelation into His identity in Hebrews 7. When you read this scripture, the identity becomes clear. Who is “king of righteousness” – who is “king of peace” – who is both king and priest? Who has no beginning and no end? Who is a priest continually? Theologians call this a theophany: a manifestation of God to man.
 
The first miracle of Abram’s journey occurs. A decision has to be made by Abram in the King’s Valley. Which king’s advice will he follow? One king comes with a promise of riches and influence. The other king comes with communion elements and a blessing from God Most High. Abram chooses to decrease to increase. He chooses to honor God rather than himself. And, in truth, through God, he becomes the most powerful man in the land who doesn’t even possess a thing! Two kings will approach you after your miracle. Which one will you honor?

Today’s Scriptures:
  •       Genesis 14:14, 18-20
  •       Hebrews 7:1-4
 
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