Rev. Joel L. Tolbert
What Abram Heard
This coming Sunday, the middle scripture reading is Genesis 15:1-6. It's the moment when God covenants with Abram (and Sarai) and promises Abram's family will be greater than the stars of the sky.
For many, the text is a beautiful promise of God's faithfulness to God's chosen people. But, not too long ago, this text was misused.
In the passage, Abram argues with God, saying, "You haven't yet given me an heir... a slave born in my house is to be my heir!” But Abram heard God say, “This one shall not be your heir..."
Not too long ago, Christians used this little story from scripture to justify slavery, to promote the higher value of God's chosen people (white Christians), and God's lower value on slaves (people of color).
This fall, we are starting back several small groups and starting a few new ones. I'd like to ask each of you to consider finding ONE group in the church, joining that group, and regularly attending. Listen, learn, discuss, read, and ask questions. We've been taught many things from scripture or the church that may not point to the God we know best in Jesus.
On Sunday, August 28th, we will hear from the leaders and participants of the Civil Rights Bus Tour, and we will review the fall small groups. I hope everyone will come and share the meal and conversation, then go home ready to learn and share even more in the months ahead.