Then He said to him, “I am the Lord, who brought you out of Ur of the Chaldeans, to give you this land to inherit it.” And he said, “Lord God, how shall I know that I will inherit it?” So He said to him, “Bring Me a three-year-old heifer, a three-year-old female goat, a three-year-old ram, a turtledove, and a young pigeon.” (Genesis 15:7-9)
In a manner of speaking, God told Abram, “I didn’t bring you this far to abandon you.” But like most of us, Abram needed reassurance that the promise would come to pass and thus his question, ““How shall I know that I shall inherit it?” So many times, when I have been uncertain about the future, my wife has reminded me, “God didn’t bring us this far to leave us hanging.” It is true, He completes what He starts. Paul told the Philippians that they should be confident that, “He who has begun a good work in you will complete it” (Philippians 1:6). So should we.
To allay his concerns, God answered Abram’s question with action — He made a covenant with him. In the ensuing verses, the Bible tells us that Abram brought the different animals God had instructed him to gather, and with exception of birds, he divided the animals into halves. In antiquity, two contracting parties would walk through portions of slain animals signifying they were united by common blood. In other words, God validated His promise with a covenant of blood. At this point in the story, the Bible says:
“And when the vultures came down on the carcasses, Abram drove them away.” (Genesis 15:11)
It reads as if it was the bird’s intention to interrupt the consummation of this covenant which is reminiscent of the birds who come to snatch up the seed in the parable of the Sower (Mark 4). In the parable, those birds represent the Adversary who comes to snatch up the Word before it has times to take root. Perhaps, the Adversary was attempting to come and steal away what Abraham had been told and that brings us to our point.
Satan would love to steal the word that has been given us especially in our times of doubt and uncertainty. But we must hold fast to the promise that has been given and trust that the Father will, indeed, complete what He has started in our lives.
Blessings and Shalom,