1/16 Genesis 15:1

1 After these things the word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision: "Fear not, Abram, I am your shield; your reward shall be very great."

Abram and his servants had been successful in a sneak attack against a much larger army to rescue his nephew and the people of Sodom. The spoils from the battle included the former possessions of Sodom. Abram would not take any of it but gave it all back to the king of Sodom. His family and small band of servants now lived under the threat of a retaliatory attack, and they were no better off financially for taking that risk. His nephew who had chosen the best of the land was saved, but at what cost?

It was a short time later that the LORD appeared to Abram in a vision with a great promise. The eternal God promised to be a shield to Abram. Now that is protection! What peace of mind that must have conveyed to Abram! But that is not all. God promised that Abram's reward would be very great. Some translations say that God would be Abram's very great reward. A relationship with Almighty God would certainly be an exceeding great reward.

Abram was gracious to the point of risking his life for the vile people of Sodom. He demonstrated the grace that God had shown toward him (Genesis 12:16). Is this promise of being a shield and great reward only for him, or for all who will be as gracious to others as God is toward us? Could there be a greater promise than this?

Prayer: LORD, I thank you for Abram's example of graciousness and for Your response. Help me to be as gracious to others, even to those I have reason to dislike. Set before me this prize of You being my shield and my exceeding great reward.