Cool Hand Abraham

Genesis 14:22-23
But Abram said to the king of Sodom,
“I have lifted my hand to the Lord,
God Most High, Possessor of heaven
and earth,
 that I would not take a thread
or a sandal strap or anything that is yours,
lest you should say, ‘I have made Abram rich.’”
ESV

               I always wondered how Paul Newman, in the movie Cool Hand Luke, got his nickname.  It happens when he’s collecting winnings from a bluff, and nonchalantly says, “Yeah, well, sometimes nothin’ can be a real cool hand.”

               Father Abraham trumped that when he went to war to rescue his nephew’s family.  Not only does he beat the snot out of multiple hordes of kings and their armies, but he’s got the option to take their plunder.  Abraham says (Genesis 14), “I wouldn’t take a thread or a sandal strap or anything that is yours, lest you should say, ‘I have made Abram rich.’   I will take nothing but what the young men have eaten, and the share of the men who went with me.”

               If that was me, I’d be like, “First, I’m going to pay off my house, then I’m going on vacation…”, but Abraham had a hold on God’s blessing for his life.  So much so, that all earthly plunder paled in comparison to knowing God.  We can have that perspective if we see how God wants to bless us in Christ.    

God promised Abraham a name, physical and spiritual prosperity, and nations (Genesis 12).  When you read it you might think, “I don’t think anybody could be as blessed as Abraham!”  But the truth is…we get all that and more in Christ.  Galatians 3:14, “So that in Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might come to the Gentiles, so that we might receive the promised Spirit through faith.”

Bluffs may work in poker, but not life.  Why not find your winning hand in the hand of God?

By Aaron F. Jeffers

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