Summary: Study through the eleventh chapter of Hebrews; As we study this passage of scripture in Hebrews we will see this act of Abraham is the supreme act of faith, and believing God to keep His word.
Letting your Faith do the Walking Part VI
Abraham’s Faith: A Sacrificial Faith
Pm service July 13th 2008
Tonight as we come to part six in our series “Letting your faith do the walking”, we come again to Abraham. The first time we saw Abraham it was an obedient and hopeful faith, because God had called him to leave his home and set out for land that God would promise him.
Then the second time we saw Abraham it was believing the impossible through faith, dealing with God’s promise a an heir by his wife Sarah, even though they were well past child bearing years, and we saw that God fulfilled yet another promise to Abraham.
Tonight we will see that God is going to require more of Abraham. To give you a little more background on this message tonight I want to go back to the book of Genesis and read the original account of when God came to Abraham required more of him. (Read Genesis 22:1-18)
Tonight as we study this passage of scripture in Hebrews we will see this act of Abraham is the supreme act of faith, and believing God to keep His word. This is the picture of sacrificial faith, the faith that God demands of every human being, the faith without which a person will never inherit the promises of God. Tonight we will learn about the sacrificial faith of Abraham.
Read Scriptures: Hebrews 11:17-19
I. Abraham’s Faith was a faith that obeyed God regardless of the Cost
Vs. 17 “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,”
About 15 years into his promised son’s life, after years of delight and raised expectations in this true son, God speaks once again to Abraham. This time the words are not words of comfort or promise. They are words that seem, at first hearing, to be sheer insanity,
Genesis 22:2 “Take your son, your only son, Isaac, whom you love, and go to the region of Moriah. Sacrifice him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains I will tell you about.”
Mt. Moriah is a significant place to this day. Today it is the site at the heart of the old city of Jerusalem where the Dome of the Rock Mosque stands. It was from the time of David to Jesus, the site of the Jews temple, the center of their religion. But in Abraham’s time it was just another mountain in the desolate region of Canaan.
Can you imagine what a blow this was to Abraham? Nothing in the Scripture tells us what is in his mind, what emotions he struggled with. But it is not hard to imagine. First in his mind would have been shocked bewilderment.
“God, I know Your voice. I have walked with You, worshiped You, listened to You for years now. How could You ask this?”
We know the whole story. We know that God never had any intent to take this test to its ultimate end... but Abraham did not have that advantage. He only knew that he was faced with the most difficult test of his entire life!
Who did he love most... God or Isaac?
Which demand would he satisfy, the need for a son or the need to obey the command of His God?
Abraham had to answer a question about the depth of his love that was stunning, that was irrational by all human logic; that flew in the face of every promise he had received from God up to this time. During that night, he must have cried out... “God, what about those promises of descendants that will be too numerous to count? What about that promise that my heirs will bless the whole earth? Why, what, how?” In asking these questions, he would have been only human. His must have been a tortured night for nothing made sense.
Have you ever been there in a similar situation?
Have you ever wrestled with options that demanded a choice, a place of no compromise and didn’t make any earthly sense?
Everyone one of us has found ourselves crying out at some time...
“WHY? WHY is this happening to me? What do you want from me, Jesus?
There is no logic, no reason, no sense... this is sheer insanity!”
In reality, these moments where God’s reason is hidden, are the hardest moments of faith. It is not so hard to endure when we can see a reason. But when suffering comes to us that has no immediate explanation, then we are tested. It is in those moments we discover the depth of our faith.
What a faith Abraham has cultivated! This kind of test came to a man well advanced in his spiritual maturity. God knew what he could stand up to and He knew how this man trusted Him, but now Abraham was going to find out yet another truth about himself and His God.