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Daily Devotional | Sarai - The Covenant Confirmed Daily Devotional | Sarai - The Covenant Confirmed

Daily Devotional | Sarai - The Covenant Confirmed


A vow renewal ceremony has become an increasingly popular way for couples to recommit to one another and reclaim their marital promises. They often use new rings as a tangible sign of their ongoing devotion. In Genesis 17, Abram was 99 years old, and his son Ishmael was 13. Abram had spent over a decade, assuming that Ishmael was his covenant son and undoubtedly raising him as such. Then God appeared in a conversation that changed everything.

God began by claiming His identity as “God Almighty” (v. 1). Then He instructed Abram to “walk before [Him] faithfully and be blameless” (v. 1). Finally, He explained the purpose of His visit: to confirm His covenant. Abram fell face down on the ground, as God laid out in more detail what this covenant would entail: Abram would be the father of many nations; this covenant would be everlasting; the whole land of Canaan would be theirs; Abram and his male descendants would be circumcised as a physical mark and sign of submission; Sarai would be the one to bear Abram the son of the covenant; and both Abram and Sarai would receive new names.

Don’t forget that, by this time, 25 years had passed since God’s first conversation with Abram in Harran. Don’t forget that Abram had spent the past 13 years raising Ishmael as his covenant heir. Based on those facts, it isn’t a surprise that Abram’s first response was to laugh and proclaim, “If only Ishmael might live under your blessing!” But then Abram obeyed. That very day he had all of the men of his household circumcised. God decreed circumcision as the sign of this covenant, as an outward marker on those to whom the covenant was applied, and a symbol of their submission to Him. 

>> God calls us to holiness—to be set apart for Him. What marks you as God’s? In what way is He calling you to “walk before Him and be blameless” right now? Pray for the wisdom, courage, and consecration to do so.

Pray with Us

We ask for clarity as we seek your guidance, Lord. Grant us courage to obey you in every detail - even when it goes against our culture. We desire to shine your unmistakable light in the world.

BY Kelli Worrall

Kelli Worrall is Professor of Communications and Chair of the Division of Music and Media Arts at Moody Bible Institute. She is the author of several books, including Pierced and Embraced: 7 Life-Changing Encounters with the Love of Christ. Kelli studied at Cedarville University (BA), Trinity Evangelical Divinity School (MRE), and Roosevelt University (MFA).  She enjoys speaking both individually and with Peter at events and retreats. They live in northwest Illinois with their two children.

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