When people first read this story in Genesis, most of them get a little uncomfortable and rightfully so! Abraham is put to a very big test of faith in the most dramatic fashion and it's a direct order from God. Literally...
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Two things stand out to me. One, Abraham shows us an incredible amount of solid faith. Two, the story has a lot of similarities to the story of Jesus and His death.
Abraham is tested and he doesn't waiver. How many of us can say this? I know I certainly can't. It's really hard when times are tough to remain steadfast but that is what God asks us to do. He asks us to trust Him, no matter what! Even when it's excruciatingly painful. I can't even imagine what Abraham must have felt like in that moment. It's hard to even try to put yourself there, emotionally, as a parent; but no matter what, Abraham was ready to show up and do the work that God had asked him to do. That is faith!
As I read through the Bible, one of my favorite games to play is that in each book I read, I challenge myself to find Jesus in it. Even in the Old Testament because that's what the entire book is about! Jesus. And make no mistake, He is in every book and He is definitely in this story.
- Abraham was going to sacrifice his only son, just as God did.
- Abraham looked up and saw a ram caught in the thicket, Jesus wore a crown of thorns.
- A ram was offered in place of Abrahams son, just as Jesus, the Lamb of God, was offered in place of our sins.
Abraham showed us a great example of what it means to have complete faith in God. This story can be very upsetting to people who don't see the true meaning behind it. Even though life gets ugly, we're faced with painful decisions and God sometimes asks us to do things we don't understand, ultimately our one job is to simply TRUST in Him. He provides everything we need if we simply obey.