Some Doubted: Ups and Downs
1. Call (12): God called Abraham out from his home and family (Gen. 12:1) and into the unknown (Heb. 11:8-10),
giving him great promises (Gen. 12:2-3), but promises he would never see fulfilled in his lifetime (Heb. 11:13).
In different ways, God calls all of his children to take similar leaps of faith. Can you recall times in your life
when God required of you a radical departure from an old way of life (Josh. 24:2)? What aspects of our life do
we have to, like Abraham, embrace with faith and not sight (2 Cor. 5:7)?
2. Pharaoh (12) / Abimelech (20): The book of Genesis recounts episode after episode of God’s promises to
Abraham (descendants / land) being put in jeopardy by the family of Abraham and then rescued for them by
the hand of God. How do the incidents in Genesis 12:10-20 and 20:1-18, where Abraham allows for Sarah to
be taken by foreign kings, threaten God’s promise to Abraham of descendants? We too often prove to be our
own worst enemy. Where have you seen this play out in your own spiritual journey? How has God, our
infinitely patient Father, bailed you out?
3. Hagar (16): Ten years had passed since God called Abraham to Canaan (16:3), and still he had no children.
How did Abraham justify following the advice of his wife (3:6, 17) in attempting to obtain children by their
servant, Hagar (16:2)? When are you most tempted to justify an alternative plan to accomplish something by
human efforts which God calls you instead to wait in faith? Why does God call us to wait, in Abraham and
Sarah’s case, another 14 years (15:4; 18:10)?
4. Isaac (22): After God fulfilled his promise to Abraham and gave him a ‘one and only son’ (Gen. 22:2, 12, 16;
John 3:16), God asks Abraham to do the unthinkable. Hebrews 11:17-19 tells us Abraham’s reason-defying
obedience was made possible “by faith.” What kind of relationship does this chapter demonstrate God longs to
have with His creatures (22:12)? How might God be calling you to give more of yourself to Him?