I was reading this morning in Genesis 22. That’s one of the passages that gives non-believers the willies because they don’t understand how a loving (and sane) God would ask someone to sacrifice their only child as an offering. (By the way … if you’re reading this and the nature of that story sounds shocking, that’s the point … read on for the end of the story.)
So Abraham, after waiting years and years and years, is finally blessed with a son. Then, the same God who gave this blessing asks him to offer that son as a sacrifice. Without going into the long details of what must have raced through Abraham’s mind, I’ll move to the end of the story. He obeys to the point of being ready to slay his own son in obedience, and God stops him to provide a sacrifice of his own.
And this is what God says. “Now I know how fearlessly you fear me.”
Whew … it was just a test. (Strange test, sure. But God was also trying to get our attention as readers so we see a mental picture of what lengths He has gone to by the sacrifice of Jesus, His only Son, on the cross.)
So here is the question for us. Are there things in life that we’re chasing after with all of our energy and passion, but they just seem so elusive? Money, success, children, a healthy marriage, a new career …. Could it be that if we are willing to give up the quest as a “sacrifice” in order to devote more time and attention to God, that he would then give these things back to us and then some?
Seems to me it’s a question of priorities. How fearlessly do I fear God?