A Long Eye And A Short Eye
and they make miserable work of their Christian life. They keep one
eye on the eternal city and the other eye on the well-watered plains
of Sodom. That was the way it was with Lot: he had a short eye and a
long eye. It would be pretty hard work to believe that Lot was saved
if it were not for the New Testament. But there we read that "Lot's
righteous soul was vexed,"--so he had a righteous soul, but he had a
. He didn't have peace and joy and victory like Abram.
After Abram had given up the wealth of Sodom that was offered him,
then God came and enlarged his borders again--enlarged the promise.
"I will be your exceeding great reward; I will protect you."
Abram might have thought that these kings that he had defeated might
get other kings and other armies to come, and he might have thought
of himself as a solitary man, with only three hundred and eighteen
men, so that he might have feared lest he be swept from the face of
the earth. But the Lord came and said:
"Abram, fear not."
That is the first time those oft-repeated words, "fear not," occur
in the Bible.
"Fear not, for I will be your shield and your reward."
I would rather have that promise than all the armies of earth and
all the navies of the world to protect me--to have the God of heaven
for my Protector! God was teaching Abram that He was to be his
Friend and his Shield, if he would surrender himself wholly to His
keeping, and trust in His goodness. That is what we want--to
surrender ourselves up to God, fully and wholly.
In Colorado the superintendent of some works told me of a miner that
was promoted, who came to the superintendent, and said:
"There is a man that has seven children, and I have only three, and
he is having a hard struggle. Don't promote me, but promote him."
I know of nothing that speaks louder for Christ and Christianity
than to see a man or woman giving up what they call their rights for
others, and "in honor preferring one another."
We find that Abram was constantly surrendering his own selfish
interests and trusting to God. What was the result? Of all the men
that ever lived he is the most renowned. He never did anything the
world would call great. The largest army he ever mustered was three
hundred and eighteen men. How Alexander would have sneered at such
an army as that! How Caesar would have looked down on such an army!
How Napoleon would have curled his lip as he thought of Abram with
an army of three hundred and eighteen! We are not told that he was a
great astronomer; we are not told that he was a great scientist; we
are not told that he was a great statesman, or anything the world
calls great; but there was one thing he could do--he could live an
unselfish life, and in honor could waive his rights, and in that way
he became the friend of God; in that way he has become immortal.