Genesis 17: Grasping the Great Truth of God

*These notes come from Bob Deffinbaugh’s study on Genesis 17 at
  • A temptation in Christianity is to proclaim something new that has not been heard, but it was the Pagans who were eager to provide the new while Christians are charged to proclaim the truths we have already heard.
  • 13 years at this point since God last spoke to Abraham. First time that God ever revealed himself to Abraham
  • God refers to himself with a new name and also renames Abraham
    • Abram = high/exalted father
      Abraham = father of a multitute
  • Circumcision was not all Abraham was required to do but a symbol of his end of the bargain. Earlier, God had commanded him to walk before him and be blameless.
    • Put away the flesh because you belong to God
    • circumcision did not save boys but evidenced the faith of the mother and father in raising the child
    • Believer’s Baptism is a public sign of believing and circumcision is a private sign of parent’s faith and only for male’s.
      • Perhaps circumcision came from the sin of Hagar and trying to help God
    • Circumcision was a sign of the covenant with Abraham while baptism is the sign of the Lord’s supper
    • God’s plan was to provide a son through spiritual effort not human effort
    • Ishmael’s birth to God’s appearance = 13 years
    • 3 months from Abraham’s circumcision to Isaac’s birth
    • It took Abraham a lifetime to grasp God’s promise, how long will it take us? It is not about learning something new, but rather about accepting the truth

*Link to study on the rest of the chapters in Genesis


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