Genesis 2:7, 1:26-27

Genesis 12-16,20        Abraham's Life Detours      – The Bible Teaching Commentary

Introduction: Abraham's Life Detours

Abraham's Life Detours
Intro & Objectives
A) Place Detour (Genesis 12;20)
B) Person Detour (Genesis 13-14)
C) Procedure Detour (Genesis 16-17)
Haven't we all made some bad decisions in life? But for Abraham, his mistakes are being studied 4,000 years later!

One would think that God would not be so hard on Abraham for his bad decisions. God recorded Abraham's mistakes right beside the great promises the LORD gave to him. We feel awkward even reading the account.

Disobedience always costs. God does not count how long you have been a Christian or what you have done for His kingdom. If anything, we find that those who get closer to God are held up to a more scrutinizing standard than others.


  1.) Understand more of Abraham's weaknesses so that we can better learn from his life.
  2.) Show how insecurities develop and avoid such paths.
  3.) Be aware of relativism and instead pledge to live by God's Word no matter what it costs.
  4.) Reject making life decisions by our senses and prioritize faith.

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We have a difficult time understanding the consequences God brought to Abraham's life if we do not rightly understand God and His ways. God treats holy those who are close to Him. We see this illustrated by the fire that came from Yahweh's presence to consume Aaron's sons, Nadab and Abihu. Moses tried to calm Aaron down by explaining God's strong action in Leviticus 10:3.

It is what the LORD spoke, saying,
By those who come near Me I will be treated holy,
And before all the people I will be honored.

It was only after this that Aaron was willing to quiet down. We find this same demand for holiness to be among Abraham. We find it with all of God's people. Disobedience reveals an arrogance that we have about God. We find our opinions or judgments to be more worthy than what God has said.

With this theme in mind, we can learn from the mistakes of Abraham. We can learn from the study of history but in the end, history is the study of the decisions and consequences of decisions that certain individual have made.

We here will here explore three detours that Abram took which got him off God's path. What is a detour? A detour is a long way around. A detour takes you off the best path but later after much inconvenience brings you back on the main road. We should always have faith that if we humble ourselves, that God in His great grace will again bring us back to that main road again.

Let's take a good look at them. The reason that they were recorded were to keep us from making the same mistakes in our spiritual journey.

A. Place Detour (Genesis 12)

Went where he wasn't suppose to.
Go forth from your country,
To the land which I will show you

B. Person Detour (Genesis 13-14)

Stayed with those he shouldn't
And from your relatives
And from your father's house,

C. Procedure Detour (Genesis 16)

Did things in ways he shouldn't
And I will make you a great nation.“


Relativism is a popular cult among God's people but its history goes way back. Whenever people adjust God's commands or directions according to their own preferences and tastes, we see evidence for this relativistic mindset. How serious do you take this warning or relativity?

The Genesis Index

Genesis Introduction:  Introduction to Genesis |  Outline and Genealogies  |  Genesis' Chronologies (5 & 11) |   Unified Themes of Genesis
Genesis 1-2:3:   The Worship of the Creator |  The Meaning of Creation  |  Creation Lessons on God.  |  God and the World's Religions
Genesis 2:4-17:    Preparation for Man (Genesis 2:4-6) |  Creation of Man (Gen. 2:7, 1:26-27) |  Purpose for Man (Genesis 2:8-17)
Genesis 2:18-25: The Foundations of Marriage
Genesis 3:1-13: The Fall of Man | Temptation (Genesis 3:1-6) | The Fall (Genesis 3:7-13) | Questions 3:1-6 | Questions 3:7-13
Genesis 5-9: Genesis Flood | Genesis 05 Genealogical Chart
Genesis 10-11: Noah's Sons| Questions | History Genesis 10:6-11 | Tower of Babel Genesis 11:1-9 | Questions | Culture Genesis 11
Genesis 12-22:   The Call: Genesis 12.1The Promises: Genesis 12.2-3  |  The Means: Genesis 15The Testing: Genesis 22
Genesis 12-16: Introduction |   Place Detour: Genesis 12:10-20; 20 |  Person Detour: Genesis 12:13-14Procedure Detour: Genesis 16-17
Genesis 14:1-24: Three Steps to Spiritual Growth | #1 Observe | #2 Utlilitize | #3 Secure
Genesis 18-19: Cultural Woes of Sodom | Appearing to Abraham | Visit to Sodom | Debate of Homosexuality and Sodom
Genesis 21-26: Isaac's Model for Godly Marriages
Genesis 27-36: Genesis 27-36 Jacob's Life of Faith
Genesis 25-37: Influence of Sin | God and Man's Sin | Understanding Man's Sin Nature | Understanding Jacob's Sins
Genesis 37-50: Joseph’s Dillusonment | Genesis 42-47:12: The Big Picture | Conclusion | The Reason

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Biblical Foundations for Freedom

Rev. Paul J. Bucknell

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