So Abram said to Lot, “Let’s not have any quarreling between you and me, or between your herders and mine, for we are close relatives. 9 Is not the whole land before you? Let’s part company. If you go to the left, I’ll go to the right; if you go to the right, I’ll go to the left.” – Genesis 13: 8-9, NIV
I once heard a sermon preached by Dr. Adrian Rogers entitled, Decision Determines Destiny. The sermon had great impact on me and deals with a subject each of us face on a daily basis…decisions. You cannot go through life without making decisions. In fact, your life will be remembered by the sum total of the decisions you have made. In Genesis chapter 13, we learn about two men. The first is Abraham, a man who loved God and of whom the Bible refers to as a “friend” to God. The other man was his nephew, Lot. His story would end much different than Abraham’s.
Of Abraham, the Bible tells us that God declared him righteous because of his great faith. He would be blessed and become the patriarch of the nation of Israel. Lot was also called a “righteous” man, a “justified” man according to 2 Peter 2:7. However, at a deeper inspection of his character, Lot, a righteous man, was also a very carnal man. The difference between the two is that Abraham was a “spiritually minded” man, and Lot was a “carnal minded” man and this became evident through the decisions they would make.
Decisions Reveal Your Priorities! Here, God reveals the land that He is giving to Abraham. In turn, Abraham grants Lot an offer to good to pass on. Lot could choose any piece of land he wanted and so he made his choice. Influenced by his own priorities, Lot chooses to settle in the plains of the Jordan. The Bible describes the beauty and prosperity of the land he chose. This land would surely give him the quickest return on his investments, however, it came at a price. The land Lot chose placed him and his family near the wicked city of Sodom.
Now Abraham, though the patriarch and within his rights to have chosen first and given Lot what was left, made an unselfish decision. He humbled himself because he wasn’t looking for a quick return on his investment. No, he was looking for something greater.
The Bible says, “By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to the place which he would receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he was going. 9 By faith he dwelt in the land of promise as in a foreign country, dwelling in tents with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise; 10 for he waited for the city which has foundations, whose builder and maker is God.” – Hebrews 11: 8-10, NKJV
Abraham had his eyes set on God. His priorities were not about himself, but on what God would want for him. Here is the challenge you and I face when we are at the crossroads of a decision. Are we making our decision based on solely our self-driven desires? Will this decision be based only on what will give the most benefit, or, will we take into consideration God and His plan?
God has given us some sound advice when it comes to decision-making.
He teaches us to seek out wise counsel from others.
Proverbs 1:5, “A wise man will hear and increase learning,
And a man of understanding will attain wise counsel,”
Proverbs 12:15, “The way of a fool is right in his own eyes,
But he who heeds counsel is wise.”
Proverbs 15:22, “Without counsel, plans go awry,
But in the multitude of counselors they are established.”
He has also given to us His Word and His Spirit to help guide us.
Psalm 119: 105, “Your word is a lamp to my feet
And a light to my path.”
Proverbs 3: 5-6, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.”
The Big Take-Away
Remember your decisions determine your destiny. Before you make a decision, look at it from God’s perspective and take His advice to seek out wise counsel and trust His Word, and His Spirit, to guide your steps.