‘Abraham, take your son, your only son and sacrifice him’, why would this have happened? Let’s take a few moments to study the circumstances that led up to this event.
Will power! Have you heard the expression, ‘so and so has a strong will power’?
Will (noun): the power of control over one's own actions or emotions
Free will is ‘your power to control personal choices through your actions or emotions’
What was the origin of sin? Some say it all stems from disobedience of Adam and Eve and they certainly were disobedient. However, there was another sin that we must consider and that is the sin of ‘willful disobedience’ on the part of Lucifer.
I John 3: 8; 8 He who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning.
Is. 14: 12-14; 12 How you have fallen from heaven, O morning star (Lucifer), son of the dawn! You have been cast down to the earth (serpent), you who once laid low the nations! (the temptation of Adam and Eve). 13 You said in your heart, “I will ascend to heaven; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of the assembly, on the utmost heights of the sacred mountain. 14 I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.
So we see that Lucifer manufactured a deliberate act of ‘willful disobedience’ to the commandment of the Lord God. Whereas, Adam and Eve were ‘un-willfully disobedient’ because they did not conceive the idea of sin in their heart, it was only after they were made aware did they disobey.
Although there were some righteous men in the early years, mankind did not have a very good track record for being righteous
Satan’s willful disobedience, deception, Cain murdering Abel, the tower of Babel
Was man headed down the same path as Lucifer, the path of ‘willful disobedience’?
God searches the earth for righteous men, consider the text written to Asa, king of Judah, when he did not rely upon the Lord for deliverance from his enemies.
[Key-verse] II Chron. 16: 9; 9 For the eyes of the Lord range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to Him.
GOD’S DESIRE FOR THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF MAN
God wants us to be righteous people. This is a main theme of the Bible and motivation for His intervention in man’s affairs. He loves us so much that it actually pains Him to see us waver from His creative design (our free willed nature). To God it must have seemed that we continually fell short of the mark. It was time to search the earth for a righteous man and then place him under a watchful eye, a series of tests if need be.
Gen 17: 1-2; 1 When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the Lord appeared to him and said, “I am God Almighty; walk before Me and be blameless. 2 I will confirm My covenant between Me and you and will greatly increase your numbers.”
A. There was a Holy covenant made between God and man, a binding contract between two parties where both parties had a duty to uphold.
B. God’s part was to make Abraham the father of many nations.
C. Abraham’s part was the circumcision, an everlasting sign in the flesh.
As far as Abraham was concerned the sign in the flesh was done more for the individual, a kind of physical reminder that he had been separated out of the world and unto God. The real covenantial agreement was his willful obedience to the conditions of the covenant (doing what the Lord had commanded). Well, as we know, father Abraham was obedient and he circumcised his family that day. But over a period of time things seemed to go downhill from there. Yes Ishmael had been born and Sarah had finally given birth to Isaac. And as a result of earlier decisions things got quite complicated. It appeared that God needed to examine the situation, even though the covenant conditions were upheld, there would be another test of obedience.
Why the test? Why would God command Abraham to sacrifice his only son?
1. Sarah tried to solve the problem for God by giving Hagar to Abraham, he went along with the perceived solution (Gen. 16: 2) and later she told Abraham to kick Hagar and Ishmael out because she was afraid that Isaac would not get the promise of God (Gen. 21: 10).
2. Abraham had previously tried to deceive Abemelech about Sarah, saying she was his sister (Gen. 20: 1). He feared his own life (Gen. 20: 11).
Who was really in control?
Was Abraham wavering from trusting the Lord with his whole life?