【Bible Study】Genesis 17: Nothing is Impossible for God

Pastor Samuel Sharing

Brother William Sharing

Bible Study: Genesis


Good morning, everyone! Today we are looking at Genesis Chapter 17 which is an amazing chapter. This chapter is very different from the previous ones. In the previous chapter, God spoke to Abraham through a vague vision. In this chapter, God however appeared to Abraham when he was still called Abram. How did God appear to Abraham? He was physically visible to Abraham and said: “I am God Almighty.” What does it mean? Nothing is impossible for God.

For Abraham to understand how powerful God was, He ascended in front of Abraham. We could only imagine how that happened.

A bird can fly because of its wings, but our God doesn’t need any as He just raised. After seeing this, Abraham's faith in God was firmly established. Though Abraham was a man of faith, he had never seen such an amazing picture nor such an amazing experience. This was a different approach compared to the time God appeared to Abraham 13 years ago. If you keep in mind that God is God Almighty, nothing is impossible with God. Whether you are old or not, as long as you stay faithful to God, you will then be chosen by Him and He will enable you.

Nothing is Impossible with God

Interestingly, God told Abraham and Sarah that they would have a child a year later. When Abraham heard this and said to himself: “Will Sarah bear a child at the age of ninety?” We always have this kind of doubt, even a man of faith like Abraham had such questions. “Will Sarah bear a child at the age of ninety? Will a son be born to a man a hundred years old?" Remember that God Almighty, nothing is impossible with Him. The key is whether we believe it or not.

But it is perfectly fine to have this kind of question. You can even ask: “How can I have this land as my possession? How can I have a covenant with God? How can I have a child at this age?” God won't be offended.

Then God said, “Yes, but your wife Sarah will bear you a son, and you will call him Isaac. (Genesis 17:19)

This is what God does! He likes to do something impossible. You and I are just human beings and like to do normal things that follow science, believing the Principles of Physics, chemistry, and mathematics.

The Power of God is Beyond Science

God is beyond science. What God can do is beyond what science can explain. God lives outside science and science is in the hands of God. Things that go beyond science are called miracles, and God is the one who performs miracles. So, don’t limit yourself by science. Because if you do, science will limit God's power and you will short change yourself for many things that go beyond science. Abraham had never seen a picture like that and he never had such a kind of experience: God was standing in front of him and talking to him. After God spoke to Abraham, God went up from him, not by a rocket or a spaceship.

It will be extremely challenging for us to go beyond science. God performs a lot of miracles as well as all other impossible tasks. After 13 years of waiting, Abraham was pretty sure Ishmael was the son that God gave to him. But God would give him another son from Sarah and call him Isaac. You may have a question: “Why do I have to wait for 13 years? Why do I have to wait for so long? Why don’t you just give me the son earlier?” God always waits for the day when things have become impossible for us and a miracle follows.

I have performed a lot of miracles. A couple of days ago, one of our brothers had a sizable kidney stone. Previously, he had a smaller kidney stone and had to see the doctor, I am not sure whether he had gone through some sort of surgery before. But this time, he had a bigger stone in the kidney, he tried to drink a lot of water to allow the kidney stone to pass through the urinary tract, there was a lot of blood that came out when he passed the kidney stone. He took a picture and sent it to us. We saw a sizable and sharp stone. How did that stone come out from his kidney through the urinary tract? That was amazing! God is a God who performs miracles.

Many years ago, a student in my church also got a kidney stone, and she was suffering from a great deal of pain. She went to the hospital and was preparing to have surgery. They took all the X-rays and the picture showed clearly that there was a stone in the kidney. So I prayed for her. Later on, when the doctor took another scan and could not find the stone anywhere in the kidney. That was not normal because science cannot explain miracles and how God went up without a spaceship or a rocket. Science cannot explain how kidney stones could have disappeared. Science cannot explain miracles, with the moment you want to explain miracles by science, that is not a spiritual approach. The spiritual approach is using spiritual words to explain the spiritual symptom.

Be Ambitious and Think Big

If you establish a covenant with God, you will experience a lot of miracles in your life even if things are impossible. And your life will be colourful and exciting, your life will not be limited by science, capability, age, and other constraints. How exciting can that be? just like Abraham and Sarah both were over 90 years old and would have a son.

So today, remember if you have a covenant with God, you are not living under the constraint of science. There will be no miracle within science because the miracle is beyond science. Never think that is impossible. For people who have a covenant with God, there is no such word called “impossible”. God is the God Almighty. Do you know what God came for? God appeared to Abraham because God wanted to reaffirm that He had established the covenant with Abraham many years ago.

The Lord had said to Abram, “Go from your country, your people and your father’s household to the land I will show you. “I will make you into a great nation, and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.” (Genesis 12:1-3)

It was over 20 years since God appeared to Abraham when he was 75. God appeared to Abraham and confirmed the covenant. The confirmation of the covenant was because Abraham was a man of faith. Not only that, but Abraham was also a man with great ambition to become a blessing for many nations, everyone on earth will be blessed through Abraham. If you think small, it is very difficult for God to confirm the covenant with you. If you think big, you are an ambitious person, you want to be a blessing for many nations. You don’t just think about your nitty-gritty of everyday life because you are not living by that. You have a big ambition to do great things for God and to be a blessing for many people.

Abraham was this kind of person. Whatever God gives to you, it would be something you want because God would never give you something you don't want at all. You need to remember that if you are not that kind of person, it would be difficult for God to make it happen. Because faith will gain access to the power of Almighty God. Nothing is impossible for God! The faith of man will gain access to the promise of God and the power of Almighty God.

How do I know Abraham was that kind of person? Because some people might laugh when God said: “I will make you the father of many nations.” It would have become a laughingstock. Can you imagine Sarah became the mother of many nations? Today we live in cities with huge populations, a lot of people do not know each other. But Abraham and Sarah were living in a small village with a small population, everyone knew each other. When Abraham and Sarah called each other the Father and Mother of many nations, a lot of people in the village would laugh at them: “you became the father of many nations? Are you sure?” But Abraham had the character of “I am Abraham, I am what God has called me”.

Let Nothing Constrain You

When I was ministering to other people, I found some interesting things. Some people just don't have any ambition for God, they just want to live life day by day. They go to work and come back home or go to the park and start jogging. And I asked: “do you have any ambition?” None. To him, the most important thing is to feed his family. Being the Father of the nations, or a blessing to many people has nothing to do with him.

I have met a lot of these kinds of people. Honestly speaking, there is no fun ministering to them. According to the teachings of the Bible, I should minister to these kinds of people like ministering God, serve them like serving God. But deep in my heart, I know that these are the kinds of people with whom God will never establish a covenant. If you are a human being and you have no God, you live under the constraints of many things, your relationship with people around you, the knowledge you have. You live until the day you die. I don't find it fun at all. But that is the kind of life they are looking for.

Let me ask you a question: do you want to be like Abraham who has ambitions inside your heart, or just like people who look at day-to-day life? Looking at the whole picture in eternal, we know God is looking for people like Abraham. After reading the Bible, we should say, “Yes, I want to live like Abraham. I don't want to live within science. I want to go beyond science entering the sphere of the miracle. I want to establish a covenant with God and to be God’s people. I want the power of Almighty God to be manifested in my life and to make it visible.

In my mind, even in the early days, there was no such word as impossible because I saw a lot of miracles that God performed in the church. On the day I accepted the Lord, God performed a wonderful miracle. From that day, I know God is Almighty. Let the blind see, the lame walk, and raise the dead from the dead. This is our God.

Testimony of Miracles

One day a sister came to see me because she had a tumour the size of a peanut on her finger joint. It was solid. When I touched it, she screamed, as it was extremely painful. This was something new to me as I had never done this before. I did not know how God was going to heal her. I just told her to put the other hand on the finger and we would pray together. Half an hour later I told her to open her hand, the tumour was still hard as a bone. Then I asked her to remove her hand back on it again and prayed together. Do you know what happened? One and a half hours later, when she removed the hand, the tumour disappeared. Where did the tumour go? I thought it had dropped off from her finger. Then I could keep that piece as a memory. Even when the ice melts, there is water left, but the tumour has disappeared completely! At that moment, my faith soared. God is amazing.

A three-month-old baby got a skin condition where half of the face was in dark red. The surface was not even like big pimples. I prayed for him for about five hours. Every hour the colour got lighter and lighter. Five hours later, the skin went back to normal. I enjoy this kind of experience. This is the covenant with God, and God is looking for the people like this.

Pursue Our Destiny toward God

If you're a person with faith, then go beyond science into the space of miracle and establish a covenant with God. God will demonstrate to you. I'm very sure you will experience exactly what I have been through. Do you have that kind of ambition? Do you want to live in this kind of vision, see far ahead? Gradually I realise that only people who understand life is meaningless will be hungry for something beyond meaninglessness. If you are the kind of person who feels life is very meaningful, you will struggle every day. You may also have the ambition to be a millionaire or to have a successful business empire. Is it meaningful to have these kinds of ambition? No, I don't think so. But that is what they believe and struggle to understand. If you live long enough, you will see their life is full of sorrow because there's no covenant with God.

God is looking for people who have spiritual ambition. Spiritual ambition is not selfish, it looks from the external perspective and life is meaningless, we should look for something beyond that. Maybe you think you just live a normal life, one day you die of illness. Then life is over! Do you think that is meaningful? All you have loved, hated and sorrow will be taken to the grave with you. What do we have in life? I feel that is meaningless. If you are the kind of person who looks for ambition in the spiritual realm, then God will establish the covenant with you.

Follow God’s Command Without Questions

If you want to have a covenant with God, you need to follow God’s command without any questions. But in this case, God asked Abraham to do a circumcision. Do you know what circumcision is? It is the removal of the foreskin from a male organ. This is challenging as I'm not sure whether I will respond to God in the same manner as Abraham. But Abraham responded to God without answering back, no questionings whatsoever. God told him the circumcision was not only for him but for everyone in his household.

If I were Abraham, I would start to wonder if I can just do the circumcision only on me. How am I going to talk to the other 2000 people about this awkward request? How can I tell them as God has told me? I really don't know where to start. But Abraham was an amazing guy and he believed that God was the God Almighty. Nothing was impossible.

Do you know what happened? Everyone was circumcised with him. Can you imagine that 2000 people in his house, half were male helped each other to complete the circumcision? There was no surgery caretaker, no clean medical environment. A lot of sheep and goats, camels around, very messy and smelly. People couldn't work after the surgery for 3-4 days. But Abraham did it. It was so amazing.

Abraham had the kind of belief which is beyond our imagination. He didn’t think twice about God’s request. Abraham only knew what God said and the covenant that God wanted to establish with him. The only thing in his mind was the covenant and he would do what God told him. If anyone didn't want to do the circumcision, they could have to go on their own. It sounded like a great opportunity to get freedom. But do you know what happened? No one left. Everyone got circumcised and wanted to have a covenant with God, even those who were bought from somewhere.

Build the Church on God’s word

In the early days, when I read this chapter, I thought it was amazing that no one left. Then I want to establish a church that has a covenant with God. I said: “God I want to set up a church you want, a holy church full of miracles, full of power, and full of many manifestations of the Holy Spirit.” So I followed the word of God. We didn’t have many members, had a lot of empty chairs. But I was determined to go with God and to have a covenant with Him. I always tell people that if anyone wants to leave, I will not stop them. But if you want to stay, then do it wholeheartedly.

Am I a daring person? Do you want to go with me? Let's do it wholeheartedly. I don't want a helper, I don't want someone who is half-hearted. Of course, some people decided to leave, some decided to do it with me. This has become an embedded culture in our church that everyone wants to serve the Lord, everyone has a destiny, and everyone believes in Almighty God.

That is exactly why today we see a lot of miracles in this place. Because God has established the covenant with us. Very often, I give people the choices of either joining me to build the church together or staying for their earthly life.

If we have the same destiny, we will work together for the same goal; if not, I would not even try to convince you. Want to work together? Let's get started. But I will bless you whatever you choose as we don’t share the same passion.

This way, the church will grow and please the Lord, Almighty God. Do you know why? Because we want to be the blessing of many nations. We want a covenant with God, and He will make our name great, make us a great nation. We will be a blessing for many people. This is the ambition in my heart.

Why? I feel meaningless! My job, my family, and the business are incomparable to the glory of Almighty God. I can put down everything for Almighty God. How amazing! I want every one of us to have a covenant with God, as well as circumcision. Although we don't need to perform it today, we still need to deal with our flesh. The concept of the carnal or the flesh was developed in the days of Jesus Christ.

Circumcise Our Flesh

They made this concept very clear, and this concept was fully developed and became even clearer by apostle Paul. Through the Holy Spirit, we don't need to be physically circumcised, however do need to be circumcised in the spirit. We will become circumcised, a person like Abraham, sharing the same ambition for God, having the same understanding of life is meaningless. I have the same kind of determination as Abraham. That's the reason why I want to set up a church where everyone will be a disciple of Almighty God, a disciple of Jesus Christ.

I want to reiterate what I have mentioned above for those who want to join me. Let's circumcise our carnal, our flesh. In the eyes of God, we do not live off our flesh anymore, but by His spirit.

And that’s exactly the meaning of the covenant. I’m sure that is enough. A year after, the birth of Isaac was an impossible task. I don't know how it happened, but to God nothing is impossible. God is God Almighty!

The Meaning of Names

I have missed out on the part that is talking about changing names. Name is an important part of life. I hope you and I are given a new name by God which represents the ambition in Almighty God. It doesn’t matter whether the name is Abraham, Father of many nations, or Sarah, Mother of nations.

Would you dare to tell people that your name is the Father of many nations when you are asked to introduce yourself? It is a challenging one. Just imagine Abraham attending a local conference and being asked about his name. When people read out Abraham, Father of many nations, what would people’s reactions be? The locals would wonder why he would call himself such a name of being the Father of many Nations. It must be embarrassing to be judged that way too.

Abraham, on the contrary, didn’t feel embarrassed at all. It was the greatest glory in having a covenant with God and was given a name by God. Do you know this name came from God? God gave me this name. I know I'm not living by my sight, but by His spirit. Do you want to be a person like Abraham? Yes! Though you may have a plethora of questions when God says this is the way to do it, I will follow his word and I'm going to do it. Just do exactly what He has told us to.

Do you know what happened? Since that day, Abraham acted on what God told him. He did not wait until everyone was convinced. Just do it! Whether you believe it or not, does not matter. If you accept it, then come with me; if not, please walk away. Because I have the ambition of being the Father of many nations. Let me tell you when I was a church member, I liked to follow a pastor who had spiritual ambition, a vision, and could establish a covenant with God. That's what I do and I believe none of us would want to follow a pastor without a vision or spiritual ambition, just want to live day by day, probably the spiritual level is even lower than the ordinary church members. Who can follow such a pastor? It’s going to be very difficult. I believe I have become a blessing to all of you! Those of you who blessed me will be blessed. Isn’t that amazing? Do you want to be a blessing for many people? Follow the footsteps of Abraham!

I believe the message I have delivered will hit home. It is positive and enlightening, not only to you but to me too.

May the Lord bless you!

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