Lessons from the Life of Abraham (part 12)

LESSONS FROM THE LIFE OF ABRAHAM

PART 12: ABRAHAM’S FINEST HOUR

( Pastor Lee Jackson FFWC)

1)    INTRODUCTION – IN THIS SERIES OF LESSONS ON THE LIFE OF ABRAHAM WE HAVE SEEN ABRAHAM’S FAITH FALTER A TIME OR TWO, BUT GOD DID NOT GIVE UP ON HIM.  NOW THAT ISAAC THE PROMISED CHILD WAS BORN & HAGAR & ISHMAEL WERE SENT AWAY YOU WOULD THINK ALL WOULD BE SMOOTH SAILING, BUT THERE WAS TO BE ONE MORE TEST AND ABRAHAM PASSED WITH FLYING COLORS.

TEXT: GENESIS 22.

 2)    GOD TESTS SAINTS AND SINNERS (FOR HIS OWN SOVEREIGN PURPOSES) (1-4)

A)   UPON RECEIVING GOD’S INSTRUCTIONS ABRAHAM DID NOT ASK QUESTIONS & DID NOT HESITATE IN HIS OBEDIENCE.

B)   NOTICE HOW SPECIFIC GOD WAS IN HIS INSTRUCTIONS TO ABRAHAM IN VERSE 2.  ABRAHAM ROSE EARLY & MADE PREPARATION TO CARRY OUT GOD’S INSTRUCTIONS.

C)   QUESTIONS ARISE AS TO WHY DID GOD TEST ABRAHAM IN THIS WAY?  IS NOT GOD OMNISCIENCE (ALL KNOWING)?  DID HE KNOT KNOW AHEAD OF TIME HOW ABRAHAM WOULD RESPOND?  OBEDIENCE (OR DISOBEDIENCE) ON OUR PART MUST ALWAYS BE ALLOWED TO BE CARRIED OUT IN ACTUALITY.  GOD WILL NOT HOLD US ACCOUNTABLE FOR OUR ACTIONS UNTIL THEY ARE ACTUALLY CARRIED OUT.

D)   WE WILL ALSO SEE THAT THIS TESTING OF ABRAHAM MAY HAVE BEEN IN PART FOR OUR SAKES BECAUSE OF UNDERLYING SYMBOLISM & SIGNIFICANCE.

3)    OBEDIENCE IS THE DEEPEST MEASURE OF TRUE WORSHIP (5-6)

A)   IN VS 5 ABRAHAM TOLD THE YOUNG MEN WHO HAD ACCOMPANIED HE & ISAAC TO SAY THERE WHILE HE AND ISAAC WORSHIPPED (SACRIFICIAL OFFERINGS ARE AN ACT OF WORSHIP).

B)   HE ALSO SAID THAT WE (HE AND ISAAC) WOULD RETURN TO YOU AFTER THIS.  HEBREWS 11:17-19 EXPLAINS ABRAHAM’S THINKING & THE GREAT FAITH HE HAD IN GOD & HIS PROMISES.

4)    GENUINE FAITH PROFOUNDLY INFLUENCES FUTURE GENERATIONS (7-10)

A)   IT SEEMS TO HAVE TAKEN AWHILE FOR ISAAC TO UNDERSTAND WHAT WAS GOING ON (VS 7).

B)   THEY HAD THE WOOD AND THEY HAD THE FIRE BUT WHERE WAS THE LAMB?

C)   ABRAHAM WAS QUICK TO RESPOND “GOD WILL PROVIDE A LAMB FOR THE SACRIFICE”.

D)   THEY HAD COME TO A VERY SPECIFIC PLACE ON A VERY SPECIFIC MOUNTAIN CALLED MORIAH, THEN GOD SAID THIS IS THE PLACE (VS 9)!

E)   BY THIS TIME IT BECAME APPARENT TO ISAAC WHAT WAS GOING ON.  ISAAC DID NOT RESIST.  HE ALLOWED HIMSELF TO BE BOUND & HIS BODY STRETCHED OVER THE WOOD THAT WAS TO PROVIDE THE FUEL FOR BURNT OFFERING.

F)    NOT ONLY ABRAHAM EXERCISED FAITH BUT CERTAINLY ISAAC TRUSTED THIS OLD MAN AND THE GOD THAT HE SERVED.  I BELIEVE ISAAC WAS PREPARED TO BE OFFERED UP, BUT THAT WAS NOT GOD’S PLAN IN THIS TEST.

5)    GOD WILL PROVIDE A LAMB (11-14)\

A)   THE ANGEL OF THE LORD (JESUS) STOPPED ABRAHAM JUST IN TIME;  ABRAHAM LOOKED AROUND AND SAW A RAM CAUGHT IN A NEARBY BUSH; GOD HAD PROVIDED A LAMB.

B)   IT MIGHT BE CLEAR BY NOW THAT THIS WAS MORE THAN A TEST FOR ABRAHAM THAT ALL THAT WAS DONE POINTED TO A FUTURE TIME WHEN GOD’S ONLY SON, JESUS, WOULD BE OFFERED UP ON THAT SAME MOUNTAIN, LIKELY ON THAT VERY SPOT.

C)   JESUS WOULD BE OFFERED UP FOR THE SINS OF ALL MANKIND, THAT WHOSOEVER BELIEVES IN HIM WOULD NOT PERISH BUT BE GIVEN ETERNAL LIFE.

D)   THIS TEST IS A MONUMENT OF ABRAHAM’S FAITH & GOD’S FAITHFULNESS.  IT IS ALSO THE ACTING OUT OF FUTURE TIME WHEN GOD WOULD SACRIFICE HIS ONLY BEGOTTEN SON, THE SON WHOM HE LOVED FOR THE SINS OF THE WORLD.

E)   LIKE ISAAC, JESUS WOULD NOT RESIST BUT STRETCH HIMSELF UPON THAT CROSS WAITING FOR THE NAILS TO BE DRIVEN INTO HIS HANDS AND HIS FEET.

6)    OBEDIENCE CONFIRMS GOD’S PROMISES & BLESSINGS (15-19)

A)   GOD’S PROMISES AND BLESSINGS ARE CONTINGENT UPON OUR OBEDIENCE

B)   I AM CONVINCED THAT GOD WANTS TO BLESS HIS PEOPLE; OUR GREATEST BLESSING IS TO BE USED BY GOD TO CARRY OUT HIS PLAN TO BRING THE GOOD NEWS OF THE GOSPEL TO A LOST WORLD.

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