“Father?” “Yes, my son?” Abraham replied.
The fire and wood are here,” Isaac said, “but where is the lamb for the burnt offering?”>Genesis 22:7
This is an amazing, familiar story that I’ve heard preached and taught several times. Isaac was born to Abraham as promised, now Abraham is put to an ultimate test.
One thing that caught my attention this morning was Isaac’s question, “where is the lamb for the burnt offering?” Apparently, Isaac was familiar with the system of sacrifice; that is, Abraham raised him in such a way that Isaac knew the process well: you willingly sacrifice the best you have for the Lord.
“and through your offspring all nations on earth will be blessed, because you have obeyed me.” Genesis 22:18
Surely Abraham knew God would bless him during his time on earth, but he had to know these words were set for some distant future–he would not fully realize the blessing. Lord, help me to be willing to sacrifice my best without reservation. Help me to understand that I might not see the future you have planned through some action I take today, but let me be true to your will.
Abraham dispatched a servant to find a wife for Isaac from his own people, very intentionally not from Canaan. The servant set off with a prayer that God would reveal the right woman to him when he got there. At the well, Rebekah showed incredible kindness to Abraham’s servant, so he concluded this was a providential meeting. Rebekah’s father, Bethuel agreed that she would become Isaac’s wife. Somehow Laban is in the decision chain here and as they were getting ready to leave, he and Rebekah’s mother ask the servant to let her stay for 10 days or so before leaving. The servant suggests the decision will be Rebekah’s to make. Her willingness to go immediately continues the story of obedience. (Laban’s story continues later.)
May we all learn from these stories of great sacrifice and faith.