The Testing of Abraham

January 23, 2022 Speaker: Jeff Bedwell Series: The Gospel Story

Passage: Genesis 22:1–22:19

The Gospel Story

The Testing Of Abraham

Genesis 22:1-19

When God brings a test to bear in our lives it is to reveal something to us and grow something in us.

In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.” (1 Peter 1:6–7, ESV)

Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.” (James 1:2–4, ESV)

Background (1-2):

 

 

By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac, and he who had received the promises was in the act of offering up his only son, of whom it was said, “Through Isaac shall your offspring be named.” He considered that God was able even to raise him from the dead, from which, figuratively speaking, he did receive him back.” (Hebrews 11:17–19, ESV)

 

Abraham’s Obedience (3-10)

  • Immediate obedience
  • Continuing obedience
  • Ultimate obedience

So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead. But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder! Do you want to be shown, you foolish person, that faith apart from works is useless? Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered up his son Isaac on the altar? You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was completed by his works; and the Scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness”—and he was called a friend of God.” (James 2:17–23, ESV)

 

God’s Response (11-18)

  • Intervention
  • Provision
  • Promise

For when God made a promise to Abraham, since he had no one greater by whom to swear, he swore by himself, saying, “Surely I will bless you and multiply you.” And thus Abraham, having patiently waited, obtained the promise.” (Hebrews 6:13–15, ESV)

 

Four Pillars Of Faith

Faith rests on what God has revealed.

  • God’s Promises
  • God’s Power
  • God’s Faithfulness/Character
  • God’s Command

The Testing Of My Faith

When God brings a test to bear in our lives it is to reveal something to us and grow something in us.

“An idol is anything more important to you than God. Anything that absorbs your heart and imagination more than God. Anything you seek to give you what only God can give.” Tim Keller

If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple. Whoever does not bear his own cross and come after me cannot be my disciple.” (Luke 14:26–27, ESV)

I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.” (Romans 12:1, ESV)

Then Peter said in reply, “See, we have left everything and followed you. What then will we have?” Jesus said to them, “Truly, I say to you, in the new world, when the Son of Man will sit on his glorious throne, you who have followed me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands, for my name’s sake, will receive a hundredfold and will inherit eternal life.” (Matthew 19:27–29, ESV)

Questions for Reflection:

  • How have you responded to God’s call to turn from your sin and trust in the perfect provision of Jesus Christ on your behalf?
  • Is there any “functional idol” in your life that you need to lay on the altar?
  • How will you strengthen your faith by focusing on the provision, promises, power, faithfulness and commands of God?
  • What is the next step of obedience that God is calling you to take right now?

 

Ready to take your Next Step?

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