Sunday, January 30, 2011

Day 20 Devotion 1-30-11

Sacrificial Faith!

Genesis 22:2 “Sacrifice him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains I will tell you about”

Abraham had to wait 25 years before His promised son was born. By then he was 100 years old; his wife, Sarah, was 90. Yet God superseded the laws of nature to allow the birth of a child to an elderly, barren couple. They named their son Isaac, meaning “laughter,” for he brought unspeakable joy to them.

After Isaac had grown into a young man, God once again said to Abraham. “Take your son, your only son, Isaac, whom you love, and go to the region of Moriah.” The message continued, “Sacrifice him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains I will tell you about” (Genesis 22:2).

Still believing, Abraham obeyed the voice of God and took his boy on that long, agonizing trip to the bleak slopes of Moriah. Though he did not comprehend God’s purpose, Abraham’s faith was not shaken. He complied with the instructions, placing his dear son on the altar and raising a knife to plunge into his only son’s chest. In the very act of lifting the knife to slay his son, God stopped him, commanded him to kill instead a ram caught in a nearby bush.

Would Abraham have gone through with it? Would the old man have actually killed his own beloved son? We need not wonder. Hebrews 11:19 provides the answer: “Abraham reasoned that God could raise the dead, and figuratively speaking, he did receive Isaac back from death.” Yes, he would have done it, because he was already anticipating God to raise his son from death!

What an extraordinary story, which causes us to wonder, what could we possibly have in common with Abraham? Many things! As God spoke to Abraham, He speaks to you. As God called Abraham to a life of obedience, He calls you. As God tested Abraham, He tests you. As God called Abraham to a life of faith, so God calls you. As Abraham obeyed … so should you.

Prayer Focus

Think about the parallels between yourself and Abraham. If possible, identify some specific ways these are revealed in your life. Seriously! Just because this is a Bible story doesn’t negate the obedience God expects from us! Has God tested your faith? Did you pass? If He tested you again, in the very near future, do you have what it takes to say “yes” – before he even asks the question? Take a moment right now to say “yes” to God. Even before he asks… sincerely say, “Yes.”