Genesis 14:17-24: Glory to God.
“17 After Abram returned from defeating Kedorlaomer and the kings allied with him, the king of Sodom came out to meet him in the Valley of Shaveh (that is, the King’s Valley). 18 Then Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine. He was priest of God Most High, 19 and he blessed Abram, saying, “Blessed be Abram by God Most High,Creator of heaven and earth. 20 And praise be to God Most High, who delivered your enemies into your hand.” Then Abram gave him a tenth of everything. 21 The king of Sodom said to Abram, “Give me the people and keep the goods for yourself.” 22 But Abram said to the king of Sodom, “With raised hand I have sworn an oath to the Lord, God Most High, Creator of heaven and earth, 23 that I will accept nothing belonging to you, not even a thread or the strap of a sandal, so that you will never be able to say, ‘I made Abram rich.’ 24 I will accept nothing but what my men have eaten and the share that belongs to the men who went with me—to Aner, Eshkol and Mamre. Let them have their share.” NIV
In the previous story, we read how deeply invested Abram was in rescuing Lot. Have a look at verses 14-16 again and note how they express what Abram did. They speak of the effort he put in. But when he later met Melchizedek, the king priest (18-20), he was left in no doubt as to the reason for his success (20). God had blessed Abram with this victory, and God was to be blessed. To God be all the glory! Let us always say it, and always mean it. We cannot boast of our triumphs. In giving Melchizedek ‘’a tenth of everything’’ it was an acknowledgment on Abram’s part that all the glory belonged to the Lord.
Someone said, ‘Without us He will not; without Him we cannot.’ There is a major truth in that. It contains a balance we must maintain in our thinking. A similar statement says that we should work like it all depends on us, and pray like it all depends on God. It certainly does!
‘ ‘’Let us be as watchful after the victory as before the battle,’’ said Andrew Bonar. Abram was tempted to use God’s victory for personal gain, but he refused the offer. The king of Sodom came with a bargain, but the king of Salem (a picture of our Lord Jesus Christ [Heb.7:1-3] came with a blessing. Even a shoelace from Sodom would have defiled Abram’s godly walk! After every battle, give God the glory; and beware the devil’s bargains. If you aren’t careful, you may win the war and lose the victory.’ Warren W. Wiersbe: ‘With the Word’, p.25.