Cutting a deal
We've been moving backwards through Abraham's story the last few weeks beginning with Isaac's sacrifice and moving back to the beginning of the story from there. This week we more or less make it and the beginning (almost) is this story of God making a covenant with Abraham.
Here we hear about the innumerable stars and given this is the last week of the church's year (next week we begin Advent - aaaggghhh!) it is good to let the starlight in already (I've already seen the first two houses this year with Christmas lights up in their windows).
But this covenant is bigger than stars. God cuts a deal with Abraham (or Abram as he is at the moment). It's done in the usual ancient way of taking animals, cutting them in two, and having the two people making the deal walk the path through the cut animals (not your usual day time television). The idea is that if one side does not keep the deal, the other side is enabled to to do to them and has been done to the animals.
Only, that's not quite how it happens here. Abram just stands and looks. It is God who cuts the deal by walking the walk. In Biblical covenants, unlike human ones, they are one sided. God does all the work. Biblical covenants between humanity and God say: I love you and no matter how you act up, I'll still love you. The deal still stands. It's called grace and humans don't normally have enough grace to make a covenant work. God does. And it i a remarkable thing.
So, what hymns might we sing on Sunday or music that could be the score in the background of these events. What about a creative way to tell the story? Any ideas?