Faithlife Sermons

Trusting During Testing

Notes
Transcript

Introduction

When it seems like God is breaking His promises or when things don’t make sense and life is hard

1. God tests Abraham

Genesis 22:1–2 ESV
After these things God tested Abraham and said to him, “Abraham!” And he said, “Here I am.” He said, “Take your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you.”
Genesis 22:1–3 ESV
After these things God tested Abraham and said to him, “Abraham!” And he said, “Here I am.” He said, “Take your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you.” So Abraham rose early in the morning, saddled his donkey, and took two of his young men with him, and his son Isaac. And he cut the wood for the burnt offering and arose and went to the place of which God had told him.
We know it was a test, but Abraham didn’t. When we go through tests we don’t usually realize that they are a test. They are just hard, frustrating, confusing, disheartening.
The Test: Offer up your only begotten son, the child of God’s Promise as a burnt offering
The only son of Abraham and Sarah, the one God had promised they would have
This must have been too much for his heart to handle
What could be worse than a parent having to see their child die
This must have been too much for his heart to handle
The totally specific one through whom would fulfill His promises
Genesis 17:21 ESV
But I will establish my covenant with Isaac, whom Sarah shall bear to you at this time next year.”
Genesis 21:17 ESV
And God heard the voice of the boy, and the angel of God called to Hagar from heaven and said to her, “What troubles you, Hagar? Fear not, for God has heard the voice of the boy where he is.
How could this be happening?
Luther, “To human reason it must have seemed either that God’s promise would fail, or else this command must be of the devil and not of God.”
If this promise is broken, then how could any of God’s promises be kept? How could we be saved since the Savior would come through Isaac?
The Test: Offer up your only begotten son, the child of God’s Promise as a burnt offering
Why? Not for God’s sake, but for Abraham’s spiritual growth
Matthew 10:37 ESV
Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.

2. Abraham trusts God

Genesis 22:3–8 ESV
So Abraham rose early in the morning, saddled his donkey, and took two of his young men with him, and his son Isaac. And he cut the wood for the burnt offering and arose and went to the place of which God had told him. On the third day Abraham lifted up his eyes and saw the place from afar. Then Abraham said to his young men, “Stay here with the donkey; I and the boy will go over there and worship and come again to you.” And Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering and laid it on Isaac his son. And he took in his hand the fire and the knife. So they went both of them together. And Isaac said to his father Abraham, “My father!” And he said, “Here I am, my son.” He said, “Behold, the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?” Abraham said, “God will provide for himself the lamb for a burnt offering, my son.” So they went both of them together.
Gen. 22:3-
He sets out -
without delay
faith in action
without talking back -
The long journey
Time to think
Time to question and be tempted
3 Statements of faith from Abraham (in
“I and the boy will go over there and worship...”
He revealed that this was an honest, heartfelt act of worship
not done out of obligation or with resentment
“…and [we/I and the boy] will come again to you.”
God was asking him to do the unthinkable...
& this action seemed unreasonable
But He trusted that God would keep His Promise
So since Isaac was the child of promise he trusted that God would raise Isaac from the dead!
“God will provide for himself the lamb for a burnt offering, my son.”
He comforted His son and pointed to God’s goodness
He put his trust in God’s will and gracious provision
Hebrews 11:17–19 ESV
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.

3. God keeps His Promises

Genesis 22:9–14 ESV
When they came to the place of which God had told him, Abraham built the altar there and laid the wood in order and bound Isaac his son and laid him on the altar, on top of the wood. Then Abraham reached out his hand and took the knife to slaughter his son. But the angel of the Lord called to him from heaven and said, “Abraham, Abraham!” And he said, “Here I am.” He said, “Do not lay your hand on the boy or do anything to him, for now I know that you fear God, seeing you have not withheld your son, your only son, from me.” And Abraham lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, behind him was a ram, caught in a thicket by his horns. And Abraham went and took the ram and offered it up as a burnt offering instead of his son. So Abraham called the name of that place, “The Lord will provide”; as it is said to this day, “On the mount of the Lord it shall be provided.”
Immediately to Abraham
God spares Isaac
God provides a substitute - the Ram
God figuratively raises Isaac from the dead
And in a greater way God would continue to fulfill this Promise. The Greatest son of Abraham would come through Isaac.
God did not spare His own Son
God sent His only Son Jesus
Who would go on a long journey at the will of His Father
And would carry a wooden cross up to a mountain top
To willingly offer His life without objection, just as Isaac didn’t fight his father while being bound or when Abraham raised the knife to slay him. And s Jesus, like a lamb before its shearers is silent, he opened not his mouth.
And God did not spare Him, but turned forsook His only Son and allowed Him to die.
1 Peter 2:22–24 ESV
He committed no sin, neither was deceit found in his mouth. When he was reviled, he did not revile in return; when he suffered, he did not threaten, but continued entrusting himself to him who judges justly. He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed.
1
God did not spare His own Son
God provided His own Son as THE Substitute
God literally raised Jesus from the dead!

Application

Testing and trials will come… and they are meant to strengthen our faith
We can trust that God always keeps His Promises
God has given His only Son for us
He has provided so that our life may be spared
He has provided the substitute for us. Jesus died the death we deserved and paid for our sins!
Because God raised Jesus from the dead, we too can have hope of rising from the dead when we believe in Jesus!
(, ESV) “18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. ...
Romans 8:18–32 ESV
For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience. Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God. And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified. What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?
22 For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. ...
28 And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. ...
31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?
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