|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
15:2-6 Though we must never complain of God, yet we have leave to complain to him; and to state all our grievances. It is ease to a burdened spirit, to open its case to a faithful and compassionate friend. Abram's complaint is, that he had no child; that he was never likely to have any; that the want of a son was so great a trouble to him, that it took away all his comfort. If we suppose that Abram looked no further than outward comfort, this complaint was to be blamed. But if we suppose that Abram herein had reference to the promised Seed, his desire was very commendable. Till we have evidence of our interest in Christ, we should not rest satisfied; what will all avail me, if I go Christless? If we continue instant in prayer, yet pray with humble submission to the Divine will, we shall not seek in vain. God gave Abram an express promise of a son. Christians may believe in God with respect to the common concerns of this life; but the faith by which they are justified, always has respect to the person and work of Christ. Abram believed in God as promising Christ; they believe in him as having raised him from the dead, Ro 4:24. Through faith in his blood they obtain forgiveness of sins.
Verse 3. - And Abram said, Behold, to me thou hast given no seed: and, lo, one born in my house (literally, the son of my house, i.e. Eliezer) is mine heir. The language of the patriarch discovers three things:
(1) a natural desire to have a child of his own;
(2) a struggle to hold on by the promise in face of almost insuperable difficulties; and
(3) an obvious unwillingness to part with the hope that the promise, however seemingly impossible, would eventually be realized. This unwillingness it was which caused him, as it were, so pathetically to call the Divine attention to his childless condition; in response to which he received an assurance that must have thrilled his anxious heart with joy.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And Abram said, behold, to me thou hast given no seed,.... He had bestowed many temporal blessings on him, as well as spiritual ones, having given himself in covenant, and all things in it, but he had not given him a child:
and lo, one born in my house is mine heir; meaning either Eliezer or his son, whom he had made his heir, or intended to make him, since he had no child; or of course he would have been to, Lot his nephew having no sons; and this Eliezer descending from Aram, the youngest son of Shem, was like to be next heir, if Abram should have no child of his own, as Dr. Lightfoot observes (g).
(g) Works, vol. 1. p. 695.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
3. Eliezer of Damascus … one born in my house is mine heir—According to the usage of nomadic tribes, his chief confidential servant, would be heir to his possessions and honors. But this man could have become his son only by adoption; and how sadly would that have come short of the parental hopes he had been encouraged to entertain! His language betrayed a latent spirit of fretfulness or perhaps a temporary failure in the very virtue for which he is so renowned—and absolute submission to God's time, as well as way, of accomplishing His promise.
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