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Living for him who died for us!

By Faith? (Hebrews 11: 8, 11:17  )

Here we are told that by faith Abraham committed two completely different actions. Most people claim the latter action to be his greatest. Abraham takes Isaac three days journey into the land of Moriah. He takes him to the top of the mountain and places him on the altar of sacrifice simply because God asked him to. To the world this seems backwards. Why would your God of love require a father to sacrifice a son? You see in Abraham’s mind this whole time he believes that God was able to raise him up from the dead. We look at Abraham’s life and we see this as his crowning moment. The moment where Abraham becomes God’s willing servant no matter what it takes. We have heard sermons preached about the faith of Abraham and how we need to mimic this type of faith in our lives. While I agree with every sermon preached about the subject I do not agree with the fact that this was something that Abraham all at once had some supernatural faith to complete the act. I believe that this faith started back in Genesis chapter 12 and grew until it reached Genesis chapter 22.

            When we see Abraham in Genesis chapter 12 he is living in Haran. Most of us have been told that Abraham leaves the Ur of the Chaldees and follows God with no reservations. Most of us have never read the Bible and our knowledge is what other men have preached to us. Abraham only leaves the Ur of the Chaldees when his father Terah takes him out. The Bible clearly reads that Terah took Abram his son. Most people believe that Abraham took Terah but according to the Bible it is the other way around. When we get to verse one of chapter twelve we see that Terah is dead and now Abraham, Sarah, and Lot are in Haran alone. We are not told how long they dwelt in Haran but we are told in Acts 7:3 that he did not leave until after his father died. We do find something interesting about the wording of verse one. The verse clearly states, “Now the LORD had said unto Abram”. From this verse we can see that God had clearly been dealing with Abram long before he arrived in Haran. Apparently this was something that Abraham was having a difficult time with. He tells him to leave his country, his kindred, and his father’s house. Abraham had made a home in Haran. He had made friends in Haran and his family was there. Abraham is now sitting in Haran and God is reminding him that he does not belong. God is telling him I want to do something great with you and through you. God is looking at him and asking why are you still sitting here? If Abraham has so much faith in God that he can offer up Isaac then why is he having difficulty leaving his home? You have to realize that by the time Abraham gets to Moriah he as seen God do some amazing things. He has seen him deliver him from his own lie in Egypt. He has been allowed a victory over the Kings that would capture Lot. He has seen his possessions grow immensely. He has communed with a pre-incarnate Christ and watched as the smoke rose from Sodom and Gomorrah. He has watched his aged wife conceive and give birth to a promised heir. By the time Abraham reaches Moriah he should be strong in the faith. Now this does not belittle the fact that he is offering up his only heir on the altar. This was an act that most men could not even fathom much less follow through with, but we must consider that he has been walking with God for forty plus years. I believe that it took more faith for Abram to leave Haran than it took for Abraham to offer up Isaac. Here we have a reluctant Abram who is supplying for himself, who is living a good life with friends and family. Here we have an Abram who has done pretty well for himself already and now God is saying step out leave everything and follow me to a place I will show you. God has not even shown Abram where he is going yet and he is supposed to follow. Here he is being required to step out on nothing. That is what faith is right? That is what pleases God right?

            Many of us say I want God to do something great with my life and through my life. The problem is we are asking God to show us our Isaac moments without ever having left Haran. We think God is asking us to offer up our Isaac and we are still reluctant to leave Haran. You see by the time Abraham is asked to offer Isaac he has already fully given everything over to God. I believe that God will never ask us to sacrifice our Isaacs until we have first given our own lives. We are so willing to offer the life of Isaac but not willing to first sacrifice our own life. Where are you today? Is God again knocking on your door and asking you to do something that you are reluctant because it would require you to give up everything you are familiar with. I have heard to many men and women say that when they were young God wanted them to do something and they turned him away. Now they live with regrets that God could have done something great with their lives. You see God wanted to do something great with Abraham but he first needed to get Abram out of Haran. Is God looking at you today and saying I have a great plan for your life but it cannot be completed in Haran. Could it be that the first act of faith was there to strengthen Abram and the second act of faith was to strengthen Isaac? We will never do anything great until we first have enough faith to leave Haran, then after many years of being out of Haran you will be able to exhibit that faith to those that come after you. By faith what will you do?