Genesis 22:1-5: Gospel resonance.
“Some time later God tested Abraham. He said to him, ‘Abraham!’ ‘Here I am,’ he replied. 2 Then God said, ‘Take your son, your only son, whom you love – Isaac – and go to the region of Moriah. Sacrifice him there as a burnt offering on a mountain that I will show you.’ 3 Early the next morning Abraham got up and loaded his donkey. He took with him two of his servants and his son Isaac. When he had cut enough wood for the burnt offering, he set out for the place God had told him about. 4 On the third day Abraham looked up and saw the place in the distance. 5 He said to his servants, ‘Stay here with the donkey while I and the boy go over there. We will worship and then we will come back to you.’” NIV UK
There are words and phrases here which resonate for those familiar with the New Testament, and who love the gospel well. I’m thinking of expressions such as ‘’only son…love…Sacrifice…third day.’’ We can tell the story of Jesus from these few words. When God called to Abraham, he showed exemplary obedience. He was available: ‘’Here I am.’’ He acted promptly. How could he do this when he, and Sarah, had waited so long to have this boy? The promises of God were bound up with him. How could he lay Isaac, and all he represented, on the altar of sacrifice? The answer is surely found in verse 5. Abraham passed the ‘test.’ He believed that he and Isaac would return.
The book of Hebrews says it well:
‘’By faith, Abraham, when God tested him, offered Isaac as a sacrifice. He who had received the promises was about to sacrifice his one and only son, even though God had said to him, ‘’It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned.’’ Abraham reasoned that God could raise the dead, and figuratively speaking, he did receive Isaac back from death’’ (Hebrews 11:17-19).
PRAYER: I pray, Lord, for a faith that trusts you, even when it cannot understand.