Summary: This sermon shows the provisions of God and His guiding hand on our lives as we persue new levels of faith.
Scripture: Gen. 22:1---
Title: "Where God Guides, God Provides"
Introduction: There’s not a day when we are not faced with challenges. The challenges come in different sizes, but they come every day. How we deal with these challenges determines how we grow in our relationship with God. Abraham was about to move into a new level of achievement greater than he could imagine. God put a test before him simply to bring him to a place where God could use him effectively.
In Spain where Christopher Columbus died in 1506, stands a monument commemorating the great discoverer. Perhaps the most interesting feature of the memorial is a statue of a lion destroying one of the Latin words that had been part of Spain’s motto for centuries.
Before Columbus made his voyages, the Spaniards thought they had reached the outer limits of earth. Thus their motto was "Ne Plus Ultra" which means No More Beyond." The WORD being torn away by the lion is "Ne" or "no," making it read "Plus Ultra." Columbus had proven that there was indeed "more beyond."
Unless a man is given more than he can possibly do, he will never do all that he can.
Many years ago there was a minister’s son who liked molasses. He frequently went by the molasses barrel, put his finger in it, and licked his finger. One day he couldn’t reach the molasses because it was so low. He tried balancing himself on the edge of the barrel, but he fell in. Molasses was all over him. With much molasses to be licked, he got on his knees and prayed, "Lord, make me equal to the occasion."
James W. Whittaker, the first American to reach the top of Mount Everest on May 1, 1963, said, "Man is at his best when reaching for something beyond his grasp."
Rome remained great as long as she had enemies who forced her to unity, vision, and heroism. When she had overcome all her enemies, she flourished for a moment and then began to die.
I. A SENSE OF URGENCY!
a. Right now Satan is doing everything within his power to control the direction of every life on this planet.
b. As soon as we open our eyes in the morning we’re vividly reminded that we live in a dangerous time.
c. Satan has so woven his ways into the media until he is portraying his perverted plan over the air-ways through Television, Radio, and the Printed pages of magazines and newspapers.
d. Satan has also found his way into the churches throughout our world until we are getting mixed signals that are causing confusion.
e. There’s a TREMENDOUS need for a solid, workable plan to combat Satan’s onslaught.
II. GOD’s GUIDANCE.
a. The title of the message is, "Where God Guides, God Provides."
b. Sometimes God’s GUIDANCE doesn’t seem to make sense to us.
c. God had introduced Himself to Abraham and developed a relationship with him and everything God had done for Abraham up until this time had been FINE with Abraham.
d. But now, God’s GUIDANCE seems to be going HAYWIRE! "Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of." (Gen. 22:2)
e. Following God’s GUIDANCE is always going to challenge you in your way of thinking things ought to be done.
f. You can toss the book of HUMAN LOGIC out the window. "For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts." (Isa. 55:8-9)
III. GOD’s PROVISION.
a. "For the LORD will go ahead of you, and the God of Israel will protect you from behind."
b. With every CHALLENGE God will provide a PROVISION. God will never ask you to do something that He will not enable you to do. c. As Abraham and Isaac walked TOWARD the mountain top Isaac asked his father where the SACRIFICE was.
d. Abraham responded, "My son, God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt offering: so they went both of them together."
e. Abraham had settled in his heart what he would do concerning the CHALLENGE God had placed upon him, he would go all the way and then figure out what God would do next.
f. As Abraham raised the knife to slay his son as the sacrifice God stopped him and told him he had passed the test.
g. The RAM with his horns caught in the thicket.
We can never see the hand of God move on our behalf until we step out beyond our own abilities and CHALLENGE God’s Word.