THE OFFERING OF ISAAC

Genesis 22:1-14 

INTRODUCTION

Genesis 22:1-14 is the high-water mark in the book of Genesis, in the life of Abraham, and in the life of Isaac.

  1. The offering of Isaac is discussed three times in the Bible (Gen. 22:1-14; Jam. 2:2:21-22; Heb. 11:17-19)
  2. In James 2:21-22 and Hebrews 11:17-19, this event is discussed in the context of genuine faith.
  3. Abraham is in the Faith’s Hall of Fame in Hebrews 11, along with many other great servants of faith.

God had made a promise to Abraham

  1. Genesis 12:1-3
  2. This promise was given six times to Abraham (Gen. 12:1-3; 13:14-18; 15; 17; 18:16-19; 22:17-19)

In Genesis 21:2 Isaac is born, and Abraham now has the son he has always wanted, the one that God had promised

  1. But notice now what the Lord tells Abraham in… Genesis 22:1-2
  2. The Lord wants Abraham to sacrifice his precious boy!
  3. What would you do in this situation?
  4. Would we have the type of Faith that Abraham had in this situation?

Let us now observe what the offering of Isaac revealed concerning the faith of Abraham.

DISCUSSION

THE OFFERING OF ISAAC REVEALED A FAITH THAT WOULD OBEY

  1. This is affirmed twice in the Scriptures
  2. Hebrews 11:17
  3. James 2:21-22

Biblical faith, in every dispensation, has always shown itself in obedience:

  1. Patriarchal Age:
    • Hebrews 11:4
    • Hebrews 11:7
    • Hebrews 11:8
  2. Mosaic Age:
    • Hebrews 11:30
    • Hebrews 11:32-39
  3. Christian Age:
    • Acts 8:12
    • Obedience of faith” (Rom. 16:26)
    • Faith working by love” (Gal. 5:6)

James 2:14-20, 24here we are informed that a faith without works of obedience is:

  1. Dead …Imperfect
  2. No better than the devil’s faith
  3. A contradiction to God’s word

THE OFFERING OF ISAAC REVEALED A FAITH THAT OBEYED WITH EXACTNESS

Notice the exactness of God’s directions…Genesis 22:2

  1. Specified what He wanted – a burnt offering
  2. Specified whom He wanted – Isaac
  3. Specified where He wanted it – Mount Moriah

Abraham obeyed with exactness!

God gave Noah exact directions…

  1. Noah obeyed with exactness
  2. Thus did Noah; according to all that God commanded him, so did he” (Gen. 6:22).

God gave Moses exact directions

  1. Hebrews 8:5
  2. Moses obeyed with exactness

When man does not obey with exactness, serious consequences will result

Consider the situation of Uzzah

  1. 2 Samuel 6:6-7
  2. This violated Exodus 25:14… to be carried with staves by the Levites

Consider the situation of Moses in Numbers 20:7-12

  1. Moses smote the rock and didn’t give God the glory.
  2. Many today are trying to treat obedience like a game of horse shoes … just trying to be close

We must take the greatest lengths possible to obey with exactness

Abraham had a faith that obeyed with exactness

THE OFFERING OF ISAAC REVEALED A FAITH THAT WOULD OBEY WITHOUT QUESTION

There would have been plenty that Abraham could have questioned God about:

  1. Only heathen nations offer human sacrifices
  2. How will the promise be fulfilled?

Did Abraham respond in this way?

  1. “Do you really mean it, Lord?”
  2. “Can’t you tell someone else to do it?”
  3. “What about Ishmael?”
  4. “Can’t I be faithfully thine without doing just this one thing?”
  5. “Is not this requiring too much?”

Why didn’t Abraham ask these questions?

  1. His faith was too strong
  2. Romans 4:20-22

We must never put a ( ? )where God has put a ( . )

We should never question the Lord for He always know what is best…Isaiah 55:8-9

THE OFFERING OF ISAAC REVEALED A FAITH THAT WOULD OBEY WHEN SUCH WAS NOT CONVENIENT

Notice the inconvenience for Abraham

  1. There were donkeys to saddle
  2. Young men to recruit, wood to gather
  3. A three-day journey to make, thus – two days of camping.

It is not always convenient to obey and serve God

  1. The eunuch traveled some 1,000 miles to worship God (Acts 8:26-40)
  2. What about the persecution Paul had to bear?
    • Persecution is never convenient
    • 2 Corinthians 11:24-28

1 Kings 12:25-29… not convenient so he changed God’s plan

We must realize that we all have crosses to bear

  1. Matthew 16:24
  2. It is not always convenient to:
    • Attend worship
    • Study your Bible
    • Teach the lost
    • Encourage a way-ward member
    • Do any aspect of the Lord’s work

Convenience must never dictate our faithfulness

THE OFFERING OF ISAAC REVEALED A FAITH THAT WOULD OBEY REGARDLESS OF THE COST

Oh, what a price Abraham had to pay!

Obedience can be a very costly thing:

  1. Obedience cost Job everything (Job 1)
  2. It cost Moses riches and esteem (Heb. 11:24-27)
  3. Obedience cost Daniel his safety (Dan. 6:10-24)
  4. Obedience cost Stephen his life (Acts 6:10-24)

There is a cost attached to Christianity

  1. Luke 14:25-33
  2. We must not teach or practice discount Christianity!
  3. 2 Samuel 24:24

What will obedience cost us? It may cost us our:

  1. Friends … family
  2. Job
  3. Personal joys and habits

But whatever the cost, it pays to be obedient unto the Lord

  1. Mark 10:28-31
  2. God’s shovel is bigger than our shovel

CONCLUSION

Is it any wonder that Abraham is called “a friend of God”? (Jam. 2:23)

Are you a friend of God?

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A SOLITARY EMBER

A Christian who had been devoutly active for many years suddenly was absent from the assembly. One cold winter evening the preacher knocked at his door. Actually, the preacher and the church member had been long-time good friends.

As they watched the wood burn in the fireplace, the preacher mentioned his absence from the church assembly. The man candidly confessed that he had decided he was just as well off without the church as with it. The minister didn’t say a word. He took the tongs from the rack, reached into the fire, pulled out a flaming ember, and laid it down by itself on the hearth. He still said nothing.

Both men sat in silence and watched the glowing ember lose its glow and turn slowly into a crusty, black lump. After some moments of thoughtful silence, the man turned to the preacher and said, “I get the message, my friend, I see what you mean; I’ll be back next Sunday.”

You see, my friends, we need our church family to keep us strong – away from the fiery family of God our light soon goes out. “Let us consider one another to provoke unto love and good works; not forsaking our own assembling together, as the custom of some is, but exhorting one another; and so much the more, as ye see the day drawing nigh” (Heb. 10:24-25).

Think About It!

Have A Great Day!

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and sings it back to you when you have forgotten how it goes.”
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CLEANING FROM THE INSIDE OUT

The story is told of an old man who lived on a farm in the mountains of eastern Kentucky with his young grandson. Each morning, Grandpa was up early sitting at the kitchen table reading from his old, worn out Bible.

His grandson who wanted to be just like him tried to imitate him in any way he could.

One day, the grandson asked, “Papa, I try to read the Bible just like you but I don’t understand it, and what I do understand I forget as soon as I close the book. What good does reading the Bible do?”

The Grandfather quietly turned from putting coal in the stove and said, “Take this coal basket down to the river and bring back a basket of water.”

The boy did as he was told, even though all the water leaked out before he could get back to the house. The grandfather laughed and said, “You will have to move a little faster next time,” and sent him back to the river with the basket to try again.

This time the boy ran faster, but again the basket was empty before he returned home. Out of breath, he told his grandfather that it was impossible to carry water in a basket, and he went to get a bucket instead. The old man said, “I don’t want a bucket of water; I want a basket of water. You can do this. You’re just not trying hard enough,” and he went out the door to watch the boy try again.

At this point, the boy knew it was impossible, but he wanted to show his grandfather that even if he ran as fast as he could, the water would leak out before he got far at all. The boy scooped the water and ran hard, but when he reached his grandfather the basket was again empty.

Out of breath, he said, “See Papa, it’s useless!”

“So you think it is useless?” the old man said. “Look at the basket.” The boy looked at the basket and for the first time he realized that the basket looked different. Instead of a dirty old coal basket, it was clean. “Son, that’s what happens when you read the Bible. You might not understand or remember everything, but when you read it, it will change you from the inside out.”

Thus, we must “Give diligence [study] to present thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, handling aright the word of truth”(2 Tim. 2:15). “Already ye are clean because of the word which I have spoken unto you” (John 15:3).“Wherewith shall a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed theretoaccording to thy word”(Psa. 119:9). “For the word of God is living, and active, and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing even to the dividing of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and quick to discern the thoughts and intents of the heart” (Heb. 4:12).

Are you being cleaned from the inside out?

Think About It!

Have A Great Day!

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and sings it back to you when you have forgotten how it goes.”
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HEY BLOCKHEAD, I LOVE YOU

I remember reading a Peanuts cartoon strip in which Lucy comes up to Charlie Brown and does something that is very unusual for her. She says, “I love you.” But Charlie Brown keeps responding by saying, “No, you don’t.” And each time Lucy answers a little louder, “Yes I do, I really love you.” But Charles Brown has been rejected so many times he keeps saying, “It can’t be true.” So in the last square, Lucy has reached the limit of her patience and she screams out in a loud voice, “Hey blockhead, I love you!”

I wonder if God has to do that with us sometimes. I mean, what does it take to get through to so many in the world? In the words of the late V. E. Howard, “Are you listening?” In the pages of the Bible God has shown us time and time again how much He loves us, and is always there for us if only we will come to Him in obedience. The Father loved us so much that He sent His Son to die for us (Jn. 3:16), and Jesus loved us so much that He willing died for us (Jn. 15:13). Acknowledging this love, then, Jesus said, “If ye love me, keep my commandments” (Jn. 14:15). We do not truly accept, appreciate, or believe God’s love for us if we are not obedient.

Think About It!

Have A Great Day!

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and sings it back to you when you have forgotten how it goes.”
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PERSISTENCE

Thomas Jefferson once said, “When we see ourselves in a situation which must be endured and gone through, it is best to make up our minds todoit, meet it with firmness and accommodate everything to it in the best way practicable. This lessens the evil, while fretting and fuming only serves to increase your own torments.”

 Persistence is greatly needed among God’s people today. Too often we are inclined to put off doing those things that are not always pleasant, or that might be uncomfortable. It is not always pleasant to confront a brother or sister in sin. It is not always easy to do the right things in a hostile crowd. It is not always comfortable to say what needs to be said and do what needs to be done. It is always best just to make up our minds and do it. Time does not ease our labor – it only makes it more difficult. 

We need to accept the advice of Paul, “Wherefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labor is not vain in the Lord”(1 Cor. 15:58).

“Just do it!”

Think About It!

Have A Great Day!

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and sings it back to you when you have forgotten how it goes.”
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WHEN SODOM LIVED IN LOT’S FAMILY

INTRODUCTION

A. One could hardly think of a more terrible picture of sin “gone to seed” than that which is painted for us in Genesis 19 – the sins of Sodom and Gomorrah

  1. As we read this chapter we are left with a sick feeling about the potential evil that can consume men’s heart.
  2. We recall at this time…

a.1 Corinthians 10:11…Romans 15:4

b.“If we do not learn from history we are doomed to commit the same mistakes”

B. There is a fierce battle being waged today between right and wrong

  1. This battle in fought in the:
    • NationProverbs 14:34
    • FamilyDeuteronomy 4:40
    • ChurchJude 3
    • IndividualJames 4:7

2. The battle went poorly in Sodom and Gomorrah in Lot’s day

  • Abraham stood before God (Gen. 18) and pleaded with God to spare the city if he could find ten righteous souls.
  • God said, “I will not destroy it for ten’s sake” (v. 32)
  • Apparently there were not even ten righteous in all that area… Deuteronomy 29:23
  • The wickedness of that place and time is so notorious that it is remembered to this very day… Jude 7

C.Throughout the New Testament, Christ and others use Sodom figuratively to represent wickedness

  1. There are many valuable lessons to be learned about the consequences of allowing the world to enter our hearts as it did the family of Lot.

2.Not only did Lot’s family live in Sodom – Sodom lived in Lot’s family. That was the problem!

  1. Let us now consider the consequences that followed this tragic state “When Sodom Lived in Lot’s Family”

DISCUSSION

A.When Sodom lived in Lot’s family respect for parents declined

1.Genesis 19:14

2.After the angels told Lot that Sodom was about to be destroyed, Lot went to warn his daughters’ husbands.

  1. It is immediately apparent that they were not spiritually minded nor did they hold Lot in too high a regard.
  2. They did not take the older and wiser Lot seriously
  3. In a matter of hours, consequently, they were among those consumed in the fire
  4. If they had possessed the proper respect for Lot, they might have been spared

3.When Sodom (the world) lives in one’s heart today – respect for parents decline.

  1. We are living in a shameful day when I see so much disrespect shown toward parents and adults in general
  2. The advice of parents is perceived as a “joke” by many
  3. So often, by the time one believes his parents’ counsel, it is too late and a life has been wrecked by folly.

4.God warns about disrespect for one’s parents.

  1. Notice God’s view of this… Leviticus 20:9
  2. Some think it is funny or ignore the disrespect of youth – but God doesn’t, and we shouldn’t either

c.Ephesians 6:1-3

  1. It is very apparent that when Sodom is in one’s family – children hold the parents in contempt – not respect.

B.When Sodom lived in Lot’s family there was a reluctance to flee evil

1.Genesis 19:15-16

  1. The angels literally had to lead Lot and his family by the hand out of Sodom
  2. Don’t forget what they were leaving behind: homosexuality, sadistic behavior, total unrighteousness
  3. Despite these horrible evils – they could not bring themselves to leave

2.Today Christians are told to flee the evils of this world.

  1. We are to flee:

1)Fornication(1 Cor. 6:18)

2)Idolatry(1 Cor. 10:14)

3)The love of money (1 Tim. 6:10-11)

4)Youthful lusts(2 Tim. 2:22)

  1. In summation, consider… James 4:4
  2. We must keep the world out of us

3.Too many are reluctant to distance themselves from activities and associations clearly evil

  1. When one leaves the world and gets on the safe ground of salvation, he should never forget what he is leaving:

1) Condemnation (Rom. 8:1)

2) The road to everlasting punishment (Mat. 25:46)

3) The misery and consequences of sin (Gal. 6:7)

  1. If we are reluctant to leave the things of the world – we will soon suffer eternally

C.When Sodom lived in Lot’s family fear reigned in the place of faith

1.Genesis 19:17-22

  1. The angels specifically told Lot he would be safe in the mountains, but he was, incredibly, too afraid
  2. He was so influenced by the sinful society of Sodom that he was conditioned to be afraid

2.That is the effect the world can have on backsliding Christians.

  1. The world encourages and breeds fear
  2. In contrast, notice the advice that Paul offers… “Be strong in the Lord” (Eph. 6:10)
  3. Remember… Matthew 10:28

D.When Sodom lived in Lot’s family a deadly yearning for the earthly was stronger than the will to obey God

1.Genesis 19:26

  1. This powerful lesson was learned in the most graphic way
  2. God told Lot’s family not to look back at the wicked city, but Lot’s wife was too enamored with it.
  3. Her glance back was fatal
  4. Through the eye of lust, Lot’s wife wanted just one more look – it was one look too many

2.With grim recall… “Remember Lot’s wife” (Lk. 17:32)

  1. We need to remember Lot’s wife when we are tempted to allow worldliness to get a hold of us
  2. Remember… 1 John 2:15-17

E.When Sodom lived in Lot’s family Sodom’s immorality had taken root in their actions

1.Genesis 19:30-38

  1. Unfortunately, the problems of Sodom were not completely removed, even after its destruction.
  2. Sodom was still very much in the hearts of Lot’s daughters
  3. They had regular contact with the citizens of Sodom, and its influence rubbed of… 1 Corinthians 15:33

d.Proverbs 6:27-28

2.In similar fashion:

a.One cannot drink from the waters of religious error and not be affected?

b.One cannot feed his mind on the garbage of this world without consequences?

c.One cannot go where Satan is and escape his influence?

3.One may think he can surround himself with evil and be affected – but you are wrongHosea 8:7

CONCLUSION

A.It was not a sin for Lot and his family to live in Sodom – the sin came when Sodom started living in them

  1. Notice these interesting words of Jesus… John 17:15

C.We must live in this world, but the world does not have to live in us

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and sings it back to you when you have forgotten how it goes.”
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THE TRUE MARKS OF SUCCESS

A hundred years ago, Ralph Waldo Emerson noted three qualities he deemed marks of true “success”: the ability to discern and appreciate beauty, the ability to see the best in others, and a commitment to leaving the world a better place. Notice that Emerson does not say that success comes in having the best seat at the table, acquiring more material possessions, or in belonging to the best clubs. Emerson contends that success comes with appreciating God’s world, developing loving relationships with God’s people, and with working to improve God’s world.

Beloved, the Gospel provided us all we need to accomplish this. “Seeing that his divine power hath granted unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that called us by his own glory and virtue” (2 Pet 1:3). And remember, the Gospel is God’s power unto salvation (Rom. 1:16). True success comes by making the world a better place through the Gospel.

Think About It!

Have A Great Day!

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and sings it back to you when you have forgotten how it goes.”
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