Beginning and First

16 March

Genesis 13:3–4

At the beginning, at the first

Genesis 13:4 Unto the place of the altar, which he had made there at the first: and there Abram called on the name of the Lord.

The grace of God led Abram back to Bethel, “the house of God” where he had raised an altar when he first came into the land of promise. This was the spot where he had been in touch with God and where he should have stayed instead of going to Egypt. The phrases “at the beginning” [v. 3] and “at the first” [v. 4] indicate that Abram made a fresh start to renew his allegiance to God. He revived his former worship and called on the name of the Lord once again. The lost communion with God was restored since Abram returned to his first love in humility and repentance. The place of the altar is the place of decision where Abram leaves behind his former life in favour of the interests of God. It is where he gives God the positive honour that belongs to Him alone. If we are to be properly restored after failure, we must likewise return to the place from which we have departed from God. Remembrance is the hallmark of gratitude. Abram returned to the sweet memorial place where he first met God. Bethel is a place endeared to Abram by association with his Lord. Memory became a means of grace to encourage hope. “Because thou hast been my help, therefore in the shadow of thy wings will I rejoice” [Psalm 63:7]. Can you remember the day when you first felt love towards God? Reflect on it and thank Him for His grace in bringing you out of darkness into His marvellous light.

Thought Count your blessings, name them one by one.

My thoughts:
It took me awhile to understand at the beginning and at first. The verses obviously clearly in the context meant nothing more than Abraham returning to the place he was at before. Then it dawned on me that Abraham return to the beginning and the first to return to his former relationship with God.

This reminds me of some NT verses I think it’s in Revelations where Jesus was chiding some churches that they have left their first love. In parallel, they have left their beginning and their first. It’s easy over time to deviate.

This is where we need to be consistent and disciplined to maintain our daily walk, talk, with God. Reading of his word and meditating on it. Slip ups, then catch up. Catching up is never easy since more effort and time will be required.

I remember my experiences in the army when we did our endurance run. Whoever is lagging behind will need to catch up and close up the gap with the front group. The catch up is the hardest but its a lot easier when the gap is closed rather than the constant chase.

Such is like God relationship I guess. Close it up now or constantly closing.

Sent from mobile

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~ by ymsim on 2013/03/18.

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