How many generations would our faith last if we did not have the church or the Bible? I’ve been thinking about this as I’ve been reading through Genesis. We have more communication technology available to us then either Abraham or Moses could have imagined. Yet, we find it challenging to pass faith from one generation to the next.
From Abraham to Moses there were a people who were God’s people. God occasionally spoke directly to individuals, although even that kind of speaking seems absent for the 400 years between Joseph and Moses.
Then Moses and Aaron went and gathered together all the elders of the people of Israel. 30 Aaron spoke all the words that the LORD had spoken to Moses and did the signs in the sight of the people. 31 And the people believed; and when they heard that the LORD had visited the people of Israel and that he had seen their affliction, they bowed their heads and worshiped. (Exodus 4:29-31 ESV)
After 400 years God spoke to Moses and when his brother Aaron spoke to the people, they received the message and worshiped God. 400 years is a long time. If you count the beginning of our nation as the arrival of the pilgrims in 1620, then we will be 400 years old next year. Somewhere out there are the descendants of those pilgrims. How many of them could tell you a story about how their parents crossed the Atlantic Ocean and settled in Plymouth Rock?
The amazing thing is that when God first speaks to Moses, He introduces Himself as the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. That meant something to Moses, and I think it meant something to the people Moses was going to lead. The Hebrews had an identity that was linked to a person and promise. How often were the stories of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob retold? Pharaoh may not have remembered who Joseph was, but it would seem that the Hebrews did.
We need to tell stories. We need to use the technology we have to document stories. It was a real blessing when my mom died to go back and find the story that she and Dad had given all their children and grandchildren as a gift. Use whatever medium you’re most comfortable with but tell your story. Especially tell the story of your relationship with God.
For my grandchildren:
Ask Mom and Dad to tell you the story of how they came to know Jesus.