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Nadya Suleman, the “Octo-Mom.”. Nadya Suleman, the “Octo-Mom.” She gave birth to octuplets on January 26, 2009. Nadya Suleman, the “Octo-Mom.” She gave birth to octuplets on January 26, 2009. Concerns have been raised about how she can raised those 8 with the 6 she already had.

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  • Nadya Suleman, the “Octo-Mom.”


  • Nadya Suleman, the “Octo-Mom.”

    • She gave birth to octuplets on January 26, 2009.


  • Nadya Suleman, the “Octo-Mom.”

    • She gave birth to octuplets on January 26, 2009.

    • Concerns have been raised about how she can raised those 8 with the 6 she already had.


  • Nadya Suleman, the “Octo-Mom.”

    • She gave birth to octuplets on January 26, 2009.

    • Concerns have been raised about how she can raised those 8 with the 6 she already had.

  • Controversy has also surrounded Dr. Michael Kamrava, the physician who implanted the embryos.


  • Nadya Suleman, the “Octo-Mom.”

    • She gave birth to octuplets on January 26, 2009.

    • Concerns have been raised about how she can raised those 8 with the 6 she already had.

  • Controversy has also surrounded Dr. Michael Kamrava, the physician who implanted the embryos.

    • He is being investigated by the Medical Board of California.


  • Nadya Suleman, the “Octo-Mom.”

    • She gave birth to octuplets on January 26, 2009.

    • Concerns have been raised about how she can raised those 8 with the 6 she already had.

  • Controversy has also surrounded Dr. Michael Kamrava, the physician who implanted the embryos.

    • He is being investigated by the Medical Board of California.

    • “How could a physician logically implant 8 embryos in 1 woman?”


Can you imagine the uproar if Dr. Kamrava implanted a single embryo in a 90 year-old woman?


  • In tonight’s text, God promises a 99 year-old man that his wife is going to conceive a child!!


  • In tonight’s text, God promises a 99 year-old man that his wife is going to conceive a child!!

  • Genesis 17:1-8.


  • In tonight’s text, God promises a 99 year-old man that his wife is going to conceive a child!!

  • Genesis 17:1-8.

    • This text says only a little about Abraham.


  • In tonight’s text, God promises a 99 year-old man that his wife is going to conceive a child!!

  • Genesis 17:1-8.

    • This text says only a little about Abraham.

    • This passage is all about God.


  • In tonight’s text, God promises a 99 year-old man that his wife is going to conceive a child!!

  • Genesis 17:1-8.

    • This text says only a little about Abraham.

    • This passage is all about God.

      • THE POWERFUL GOD.

      • THE PROSCRIPTIVE GOD.

      • THE PROMISING GOD.


The Powerful God

vv 1, 5c


  • “When Abram was ninety-nine years old the LORD appeared to Abram and said to him, ‘I am God Almighty’” (v 1, ESV).


  • “When Abram was ninety-nine years old the LORD appeared to Abram and said to him, ‘I am God Almighty’” (v 1, ESV).

    • God reveals himself to Abraham as “God Almighty.”


  • “When Abram was ninety-nine years old the LORD appeared to Abram and said to him, ‘I am God Almighty’” (v 1, ESV).

    • God reveals himself to Abraham as “God Almighty.”

    • God has great & awesome power.


  • “When Abram was ninety-nine years old the LORD appeared to Abram and said to him, ‘I am God Almighty’” (v 1, ESV).

    • God reveals himself to Abraham as “God Almighty.”

    • God has great & awesome power.

      • With his great power, God created the world.


  • “When Abram was ninety-nine years old the LORD appeared to Abram and said to him, ‘I am God Almighty’” (v 1, ESV).

    • God reveals himself to Abraham as “God Almighty.”

    • God has great & awesome power.

      • With his great power, God created the world. “You are the LORD, you alone. You have made heaven, the heaven of heavens, with all their host, the earth and all that is on it, the seas and all that is in them; and you preserve all of them” (Neh 9:6, ESV).


  • “When Abram was ninety-nine years old the LORD appeared to Abram and said to him, ‘I am God Almighty’” (v 1, ESV).

    • God reveals himself to Abraham as “God Almighty.”

    • God has great & awesome power.

      • With his great power, God created the world.

      • With his great power, God led the Israelites out of Egypt.


  • “When Abram was ninety-nine years old the LORD appeared to Abram and said to him, ‘I am God Almighty’” (v 1, ESV).

    • God reveals himself to Abraham as “God Almighty.”

    • God has great & awesome power.

      • With his great power, God created the world.

      • With his great power, God led the Israelites out of Egypt. “You shall remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, and the LORD your God brought you out from there with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm” (Deut 5:15, ESV).


  • “When Abram was ninety-nine years old the LORD appeared to Abram and said to him, ‘I am God Almighty’” (v 1, ESV).

    • God reveals himself to Abraham as “God Almighty.”

    • God has great & awesome power.

      • With his great power, God created the world.

      • With his great power, God led the Israelites out of Egypt.

      • God is so powerful that he is commonly referred to as the Almighty.


  • “When Abram was ninety-nine years old the LORD appeared to Abram and said to him, ‘I am God Almighty’” (v 1, ESV).

    • God reveals himself to Abraham as “God Almighty.”

    • God has great & awesome power.

      • With his great power, God created the world.

      • With his great power, God led the Israelites out of Egypt.

      • God is so powerful that he is commonly referred to as the Almighty. “The Lord our God the Almighty reigns” (Rv 19:6, ESV).


  • “When Abram was ninety-nine years old the LORD appeared to Abram and said to him, ‘I am God Almighty’” (v 1, ESV).

    • God reveals himself to Abraham as “God Almighty.”

    • God has great & awesome power.

      • With his great power, God created the world.

      • With his great power, God led the Israelites out of Egypt.

      • God is so powerful that he is commonly referred to as the Almighty.

    • In this passage, God is going to use his great power to enable Abraham & Sarah to have a son.


  • Moses records that God appeared to Abraham when he was 99 years-old.


  • Moses records that God appeared to Abraham when he was 99 years-old. Why would Moses even bother with Abraham’s age?


  • Moses records that God appeared to Abraham when he was 99 years-old. Why would Moses even bother with Abraham’s age?

    • This shows that God doesn’t always act according to our timeline.


  • Moses records that God appeared to Abraham when he was 99 years-old. Why would Moses even bother with Abraham’s age?

    • This shows that God doesn’t always act according to our timeline. It has been 24 years since God first made this promise!!


  • Moses records that God appeared to Abraham when he was 99 years-old. Why would Moses even bother with Abraham’s age?

    • This shows that God doesn’t always act according to our timeline. It has been 24 years since God first made this promise!!

    • This also shows that God is going to do something extraordinary in allowing Sarah to conceive.


  • Sarah is far beyond child-bearing years.


  • Sarah is far beyond child-bearing years.

    • Prior to the Flood, people did have children at ages well beyond what is now a normal lifespan.


  • Sarah is far beyond child-bearing years.

    • Prior to the Flood, people did have children at ages well beyond what is now a normal lifespan.

      • “When Jared had lived 162 years he fathered Enoch. Jared lived after he fathered Enoch 800 years and had other sons and daughters. Thus all the days of Jared were 962 years, and he died” (Gen 5:18-20, ESV).


  • Sarah is far beyond child-bearing years.

    • Prior to the Flood, people did have children at ages well beyond what is now a normal lifespan.

      • “When Jared had lived 162 years he fathered Enoch. Jared lived after he fathered Enoch 800 years and had other sons and daughters. Thus all the days of Jared were 962 years, and he died” (Gen 5:18-20, ESV).

      • While we don’t know how old Jared’s wife (wives?) was, it’s possible that she was quite, quite old.


  • Sarah is far beyond child-bearing years.

    • Prior to the Flood, people did have children at ages well beyond what is now a normal lifespan.

    • Yet, after the Flood, the lifespan decreases as do reproductive years.


  • Sarah is far beyond child-bearing years.

    • Prior to the Flood, people did have children at ages well beyond what is now a normal lifespan.

    • Yet, after the Flood, the lifespan decreases as do reproductive years.

    • We know that Sarah was well beyond her reproductive capability.


  • Sarah is far beyond child-bearing years.

    • Prior to the Flood, people did have children at ages well beyond what is now a normal lifespan.

    • Yet, after the Flood, the lifespan decreases as do reproductive years.

    • We know that Sarah was well beyond her reproductive capability.

      • Abraham laughed: “Then Abraham fell on his face and laughed and said to himself, ‘Shall a child be born to a man who is a hundred years old? Shall Sarah, who is ninety years old, bear a child?’” (Gn 17:17, ESV).


  • Sarah is far beyond child-bearing years.

    • Prior to the Flood, people did have children at ages well beyond what is now a normal lifespan.

    • Yet, after the Flood, the lifespan decreases as do reproductive years.

    • We know that Sarah was well beyond her reproductive capability.

      • Abraham laughed.

      • Sarah also laughed: “So Sarah laughed to herself, saying, ‘After I am worn out, and my lord is old, shall I have pleasure?’” (Gn 18:12, ESV).


Only a God as powerful as our God could cause a 90 year-old woman to conceive!


  • God also tells Abraham: “I have made you the father of a multitude of nations,” (v 5c, ESV).


  • God also tells Abraham: “I have made you the father of a multitude of nations,” (v 5c, ESV).

    • Notice the use of the perfect tense.


  • God also tells Abraham: “I have made you the father of a multitude of nations,” (v 5c, ESV).

    • Notice the use of the perfect tense.

      • God doesn’t say, “I am going to make you the father of a multitude of nations.”


  • God also tells Abraham: “I have made you the father of a multitude of nations,” (v 5c, ESV).

    • Notice the use of the perfect tense.

      • God doesn’t say, “I am going to make you the father of a multitude of nations.”

      • God says, “I have already made you the father of a multitude of nations.”


  • God also tells Abraham: “I have made you the father of a multitude of nations,” (v 5c, ESV).

    • Notice the use of the perfect tense.

      • God doesn’t say, “I am going to make you the father of a multitude of nations.”

      • God says, “I have already made you the father of a multitude of nations.”

    • God is so powerful that his plan was as good as accomplished.


We need to grasp God’s power.


  • God can use his great power to help or to destroy.


  • God can use his great power to help or to destroy. “God has power to help or to cast down” (2 Chr 25:8, ESV).


  • God can use his great power to help or to destroy. “God has power to help or to cast down” (2 Chr 25:8, ESV).

  • God has great power to help.


  • God can use his great power to help or to destroy. “God has power to help or to cast down” (2 Chr 25:8, ESV).

  • God has great power to help.

    • He will use that power when we pray.


  • God can use his great power to help or to destroy. “God has power to help or to cast down” (2 Chr 25:8, ESV).

  • God has great power to help.

    • He will use that power when we pray.

      • Jesus to the disciples: “Whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive, if you have faith” (Mt 21:22, ESV).


  • God can use his great power to help or to destroy. “God has power to help or to cast down” (2 Chr 25:8, ESV).

  • God has great power to help.

    • He will use that power when we pray.

      • Jesus to the disciples: “Whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive, if you have faith” (Mt 21:22, ESV).

      • When we face a crisis, do we pray & ask God to use his great power?


  • God can use his great power to help or to destroy. “God has power to help or to cast down” (2 Chr 25:8, ESV).

  • God has great power to help.

    • He will use that power when we pray.

    • He will use that power when we are tempted.


  • God can use his great power to help or to destroy. “God has power to help or to cast down” (2 Chr 25:8, ESV).

  • God has great power to help.

    • He will use that power when we pray.

    • He will use that power when we are tempted.

      • “No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it” (1 Cor 10:13, ESV).


  • God can use his great power to help or to destroy. “God has power to help or to cast down” (2 Chr 25:8, ESV).

  • God has great power to help.

    • He will use that power when we pray.

    • He will use that power when we are tempted.

      • “No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it” (1 Cor 10:13, ESV).

      • When facing temptation, do we avail ourselves of God’s “way of escape”?


  • God can use his great power to help or to destroy. “God has power to help or to cast down” (2 Chr 25:8, ESV).

  • God has great power to help.

  • God has great power to cast down.


  • God can use his great power to help or to destroy. “God has power to help or to cast down” (2 Chr 25:8, ESV).

  • God has great power to help.

  • God has great power to cast down.

    • When Nadab & Abihu worshiped inappropriately, fire came from the LORD & consumed them.


  • God can use his great power to help or to destroy. “God has power to help or to cast down” (2 Chr 25:8, ESV).

  • God has great power to help.

  • God has great power to cast down.

    • When Nadab & Abihu worshiped inappropriately, fire came from the LORD & consumed them.

    • When Korah rebelled against Moses, the earth opened & swallowed Korah and those with him.


  • God can use his great power to help or to destroy. “God has power to help or to cast down” (2 Chr 25:8, ESV).

  • God has great power to help.

  • God has great power to cast down.

    • When Nadab & Abihu worshiped inappropriately, fire came from the LORD & consumed them.

    • When Korah rebelled against Moses, the earth opened & swallowed Korah and those with him.

    • “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God” (Heb 10:31, ESV).


Will God use his power to help you or to cast you down?


The Proscriptive God

vv 1-2


  • “When Abram was ninety-nine years old the Lord appeared to Abram and said to him, ‘I am God Almighty; walk before me, and be blameless, that I may make my covenant between me and you, and may multiply you greatly’” (vv 1-2, ESV).


  • “When Abram was ninety-nine years old the Lord appeared to Abram and said to him, ‘I am God Almighty; walk before me, and be blameless, that I may make my covenant between me and you, and may multiply you greatly’” (vv 1-2, ESV).

  • Here, God proscribes the way that Abraham was to live.


  • Abraham was to walk before God.


  • Abraham was to walk before God.

    • Walking before God indicates a relationship.


  • Abraham was to walk before God.

    • Walking before God indicates a relationship.

      • “Enoch walked with God, and he was not, for God took him” (“Gn 5:24, ESV).


  • Abraham was to walk before God.

    • Walking before God indicates a relationship.

      • “Enoch walked with God, and he was not, for God took him” (“Gn 5:24, ESV).

      • “These are the generations of Noah. Noah was a righteous man, blameless in his generation. Noah walked with God” (Gn 6:9, ESV).


  • Abraham was to walk before God.

    • Walking before God indicates a relationship.

      • “Enoch walked with God, and he was not, for God took him” (“Gn 5:24, ESV).

      • “These are the generations of Noah. Noah was a righteous man, blameless in his generation. Noah walked with God” (Gn 6:9, ESV).

      • God wants a relationship with us.


  • Abraham was to walk before God.

    • Walking before God indicates a relationship.

      • “Enoch walked with God, and he was not, for God took him” (“Gn 5:24, ESV).

      • “These are the generations of Noah. Noah was a righteous man, blameless in his generation. Noah walked with God” (Gn 6:9, ESV).

      • God wants a relationship with us.

      • The construction in Hebrew points to an ongoing process.


  • Abraham was to walk before God.

    • Walking before God indicates a relationship.

      • “Enoch walked with God, and he was not, for God took him” (“Gn 5:24, ESV).

      • “These are the generations of Noah. Noah was a righteous man, blameless in his generation. Noah walked with God” (Gn 6:9, ESV).

      • God wants a relationship with us.

      • The construction in Hebrew points to an ongoing process.


  • Abraham was to walk before God.

    • Walking before God indicates a relationship.

    • Abraham was to be “blameless.”


  • Abraham was to walk before God.

    • Walking before God indicates a relationship.

    • Abraham was to be “blameless.”

      • The Heb term for “blameless” is the same term used to speak of sacrificial animals.


  • Abraham was to walk before God.

    • Walking before God indicates a relationship.

    • Abraham was to be “blameless.”

      • The Heb term for “blameless” is the same term used to speak of sacrificial animals.

      • This obviously doesn’t mean “perfect.”


  • Abraham was to walk before God.

    • Walking before God indicates a relationship.

    • Abraham was to be “blameless.”

      • The Heb term for “blameless” is the same term used to speak of sacrificial animals.

      • This obviously doesn’t mean “perfect.”

        • “If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us” (1 Jn 1:8, ESV).


  • Abraham was to walk before God.

    • Walking before God indicates a relationship.

    • Abraham was to be “blameless.”

      • The Heb term for “blameless” is the same term used to speak of sacrificial animals.

      • This obviously doesn’t mean “perfect.”

        • “If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us” (1 Jn 1:8, ESV).

        • Abraham was far from perfect—He lied & when told to leave his country & his father’s house, he took his father & nephew with him!


  • Abraham was to walk before God.

    • Walking before God indicates a relationship.

    • Abraham was to be “blameless.”

      • The Heb term for “blameless” is the same term used to speak of sacrificial animals.

      • This obviously doesn’t mean “perfect.”

      • The idea is obedience to God.


  • Abraham was to walk before God.

    • Walking before God indicates a relationship.

    • Abraham was to be “blameless.”

      • The Heb term for “blameless” is the same term used to speak of sacrificial animals.

      • This obviously doesn’t mean “perfect.”

      • The idea is obedience to God.

        • “Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered up his son Isaac on the altar? You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was completed by his works; and the Scripture was fulfilled that says, ‘Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness’—and he was called a friend of God” (Js 2:21-23, ESV).


  • Abraham was to walk before God.

    • Walking before God indicates a relationship.

    • Abraham was to be “blameless.”

      • The Heb term for “blameless” is the same term used to speak of sacrificial animals.

      • This obviously doesn’t mean “perfect.”

      • The idea is obedience to God.

        • Js 2:21-23.

        • “I was blameless before him, and I kept myself from my guilt” (Ps 18:23, ESV).


  • Abraham was to walk before God.

    • Walking before God indicates a relationship.

    • Abraham was to be “blameless.”

      • The Heb term for “blameless” is the same term used to speak of sacrificial animals.

      • This obviously doesn’t mean “perfect.”

      • The idea is obedience to God.

        • Js 2:21-23.

        • “I was blameless before him, and I kept myself from my guilt” (Ps 18:23, ESV). Notice that David describes being blameless as keeping himself from guilt.


  • Only if Abraham followed God’s proscribed behavior would God establish his covenant with him—“that I may make my covenant between me and you, and may multiply you greatly” (v 2, ESV).


  • Only if Abraham followed God’s proscribed behavior would God establish his covenant with him—“that I may make my covenant between me and you, and may multiply you greatly” (v 2, ESV).

  • If Abraham had not lived according to God’s standards, Jesus Christ would not have descended from him!


  • Obedience to the PROSCRIBING GOD is absolutely essential to receiving God’s blessings.


  • Obedience to the PROSCRIBING GOD is absolutely essential to receiving God’s blessings.

    • “If you will indeed obey my voice and keep my covenant, you shall be my treasured possession among all peoples, for all the earth is mine” (Ex 19:5, ESV).


  • Obedience to the PROSCRIBING GOD is absolutely essential to receiving God’s blessings.

    • “If you will indeed obey my voice and keep my covenant, you shall be my treasured possession among all peoples, for all the earth is mine” (Ex 19:5, ESV).

    • “Whatever we ask we receive from him, because we keep his commandments and do what pleases him” (1 Jn 3:22, ESV).


Are you following the PROSCRIBING GOD?


The Promising God

vv 4-8


  • “Behold, my covenant is with you, and you shall be the father of a multitude of nations. No longer shall your name be called Abram, but your name shall be Abraham, for I have made you the father of a multitude of nations. I will make you exceedingly fruitful, and I will make you into nations, and kings shall come from you. And I will establish my covenant between me and you and your offspring after you throughout their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and to your offspring after you. And I will give to you and to your offspring after you the land of your sojournings, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession, and I will be their God” (vv 4-8, ESV).


  • This is quite a lengthy list of things God promised Abraham.


  • This is quite a lengthy list of things God promised Abraham.

    • I almost feel as though I’m reading the campaign promises of a politician.


  • This is quite a lengthy list of things God promised Abraham.

    • I almost feel as though I’m reading the campaign promises of a politician.

    • But, God carries out every promise he ever makes.


  • This is quite a lengthy list of things God promised Abraham.

    • I almost feel as though I’m reading the campaign promises of a politician.

    • But, God carries out every promise he ever makes.

      • “Blessed be the Lord who has given rest to his people Israel, according to all that he promised. Not one word has failed of all his good promise, which he spoke by Moses his servant” (1 Ki 8:56, ESV).


  • This is quite a lengthy list of things God promised Abraham.

    • I almost feel as though I’m reading the campaign promises of a politician.

    • But, God carries out every promise he ever makes.

      • 1 Ki 8:56.

      • “No distrust made [Abraham] waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised” (Rom 4:20-21, ESV).


Do we rest on God’s promises?


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