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Friday, May 18, 2007

Faith Like That - Abraham

Yesterday I started a series called, "Faith Like That." Our thoughts today will be based on the passage of Scripture found in Genesis 22.
Today I want you to imagine you are a young man named Isaac. You’re packing up for a journey with your father. He’s going to make a sacrafice to God, and you're going with him. You love these trips. God has always been good to your family. You've heard your parent’s stories about how you were the child God had promised them. You were a miracle. Yes, you believed God deserved your praise. You're ready before anyone else. Finally you start on the journey, and as you are travelling you begin to take inventory. There’s the wood and there’s the kindling for the fire. There are the weapons to kill the lamb, and there are the ropes to tie the lamb to the altar. Something is missing though, where is the lamb? Maybe father is planning to find a lamb closer to the land of Moriah, you think. You travel on and think nothing more about it.
Several days later you have almost reached Mount Moriah. You hear your father tell the servants to camp out there, and you and he will go on to the mountain to worship God. He comes your way, and tells you to prepare for the climb.
Suddenly, you remember the lamb. Your father forgot the lamb. You know he’s getting older, but how could he forget the most important part of the sacrafice? You think on this for a while, trying to think of how you can bring it up. You don’t want to make your father look foolish, after all you look up to him. Finally you decide to just ask him.
“Father, we have everything here for a sacrafice, but we don’t have a lamb. Where is the lamb?”
“Don’t worry my son, God will provide Himself a lamb.” He says in barely a whisper. You think you might here the slightest crack in his voice as if he might be about to cry.
You dismiss it as tiredness. After all he was climbing a mountain, and he wasn’t a young man. You start to think of how proud you are of your father. He has such faith in God. He knew that there would be a lamb there to sacrafice, sent by God Himself.
You finally reach the top of the mountain. You lay your burden down and start to help your father in preparing an altar. You glance around, no lamb to be seen, but surely God would provide a lamb at the necessary time. Everything is now in order, and your father turns to you.
This time there is no mistaking it, there are tears in his eyes. “Son,” he says. “God has commanded that you be the sacrafice. I don’t know why, but I must obey Him.”
“Are you sure, father? Is this truly the will of God?”
“Yes, son, there is no other way. This is God’s will.”
“If you are sure, father, I will lay down my life.”
You prepare to lay down on the altar of sacrafice. You think this must be a mistake, a nightmare. Surely this isn’t what God wants, but from the look in your father’s eyes. You know this is God’s will.
You lay there for what seems like years waiting. Your father finally comes. He looks at you with tears on his cheeks. He tells you he loves you, and he raises the knife above his head. You close your eyes, trying to prepare yourself for the coming pain, but it never comes. You open your eyes to peek around. You hear a voice telling your father that sacraficing you is not necessary. God has provided a ram. You look around at the sound of a rustle in the nearby bushes. Sure enough, there sits a ram, a perfect ram, one fit to be sacraficed to God.
You and your father prepare the ram to be sacraficed. You are both crying tears of joy. This is the day that you have learned what it means to sacrafice everything to God, and you have learned the joy that you feel when God provides for you when you are willing to sacrafice.
Would you have liked to have been Isaac? Would you have readily laid down your life at your father’s command? Isaac had faith because he saw the faith of his father. He knew that Abraham knew the one true God, and Isaac trusted fully in his father’s word because he knew that those words came from God. How willing are we to listen to the words of God?

The question is, do you have a strong enough faith that others are willing to follow your example? Is your faith believable? Is it something that others lean on? I don't know about you, but that is the kind of faith I want. Faith like Abraham's where I am willing to sacrafice everything to God. Faith that others know if the real deal! How about you?



At 1:04 PM, Anonymous Dawn said...

I can already tell I'm really going to enjoy your Faith Like That series!!!

At 2:57 PM, Blogger staceyhoff said...

great post. I want to have faith like that, too! Seems the hardest part of that kind of faith is awaiting God's timing for an answer to prayer...maybe more so than when God says no. What do you think?

At 6:34 PM, Blogger Sista Cala said...

That's Fearless Faith at its best.

At 9:43 PM, Blogger Susanne said...

And what strikes me too, about this passage, is the faith that Isaac also had. He grew up watching his father walk out his faith in God, so he climbed up on that altar. The whole story is very moving and inspiring.


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