Summary: Abraham’s offering Isaac as a sacrifice teaches us to offer our children to God as a living sacrifice in accord with rom. 12:1
Giving Your Children to God Heb. 11:17-19
INTRO.: Tell the story of Abraham’s test from Gen. 22:1-12
this seems like a strange story. It must have been a time of great growth for Abraham and his son. This occurred during a time God was preparing a nation through which He would send a Savior for the entire world. He wanted to be sure the father of that nation would be faithful in obeying God. There is a great deal at stake.
the story teaches some powerful lessons. Let’s look at it a little closer.
I. Abraham was a man who gave his all to God:
A. He left country and family: Gen. 11:31-12:4
1. Ur was a wealthy, secure place and his family may have been wealthy.
2. First, he traveled with Sarah, Lot, and Terah to Haran, a place they may have named after Terah’s dead son.
3. The Terah died and Abram continued the journey to which God had called him.
4. Heb. 11:8-12 tells of his great faith in God.
B. He believed God and tried to carry out His will.
1. However, like most of us, he had to try his own way first.
2. Tried to carry out God’s plan by having children with Hagar.
3. It seems most of his errors were born of trying to do God’s will, not of rebellion.
C. Then the real test came. He was called upon to offer Isaac.
1. By this time, he seems to have learned not to try to seek alternatives to God’s orders.
2. Knowing it is God speaking and believing God can raise the dead, he does not hesitate to obey God.
3. Imagine his thoughts as he trudged up the hill. He continued only because of his great faith in God.
II. All Abraham’s efforts were not enough to satisfy God’s requirements.
A. He had already sacrificed his relationship with Sarah and his happy home.
1. God had a plan of His own. He would give Abram a son by Sarah.
2. It mattered not to God Sarah was old and so was Abram.
3. God provided the promised son in His own time and way.
B. It was not even enough to offer Isaac as a sacrifice:
1. Strange as it may seem, Isaac was not worthy of being a sacrifice to God. He was a sinner.
2. Instead, God provided a perfect sinless animal for the sacrifice.
3. In doing so, God demonstrated His distaste for human sacrifice. The only way God can accept human sacrifice is when it is living. Rom. 12:1.
4. We give our children to God acceptably when we rear them to serve Him.
C. All we can do for God is not enough, either:
1. Our plans to serve God fail because we can’t see the results as God can.
2. All our fine intentions fail because we are too weak to carry them out.
3. All the sacrifices we make are not enough. Only God made the perfect sacrifice.
III. When Abraham had fully surrendered his will, God renewed the promise and Abraham was blessed. Gen. 22:16-18
A. God made a wonderful promise to Abraham:
1. Great numbers of offspring.
2. Possession of a Promised Land.
3. Blessing to all the world through Abraham’s decedents.
B. Yet, even Abraham could not have realized the extent of these promises.
1. Through his descendent, Jesus, he became the "father of the faithful."
2. He made it possible for God’s people to enter a surpassingly beautiful Promised Land, Heaven, for eternity.