Bible Time Period: Patriarchs
In the time of the Patriarchs, you called Abraham and promised his children land, a royal kingdom, and worldwide blessing: Help me to trust in your promises today.
The second period of salvation history, the “Patriarchs,” is told in the remaining chapters of Genesis. These chapters leave poetry behind and provide a historical account of the beginnings of the people of Israel, focusing on the forefathers or “Patriarchs” of the nation: Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob – and also Jacob’s son Joseph.
As you read about Abram (later called Abraham), focus on the promise God makes to him and his descendants. Pay particular attention to mentions of blessing that go along with that promise. God is establishing a covenant with Abraham: a solemn oath that makes Abraham’s family, God’s family. That covenant forms the backbone of the rest of the story of the Bible. In fact, our word “Testament” comes from a Greek word that translates the Hebrew for “Covenant.” The Old Testament is about the “old covenant” – the covenant God makes with the people of Israel – and the New Testament is about the “new covenant” in Jesus Christ that the “old covenant” was a preparation for. So pay attention: all this promise-making is important to understanding what you’ll read in the rest of the Bible.
Abraham is called our “Father in Faith.” What evidence of Abraham’s faith do you see in chapters 12 and 15?
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