“Some time later, God tested Abraham’s faith. “Abraham!” God called. “Yes,” he replied. “Here I am.” “Take your son, your only son—yes, Isaac, whom you love so much—and go to the land of Moriah. Go and sacrifice him as a burnt offering on one of the mountains, which I will show you.”
Genesis 22:1-2 NLT
This story is a test of faith and obedience. God tested the faith of Abraham by telling him to sacrifice his only son, Isaac, as a burnt offering. Abraham willingly goes to the mountain and gets everything prepared. As he is ready to kill his son on the altar, an angel of the Lord tells Abraham not to harm his son. A ram appeared and He was able to sacrifice the ram instead.
What I love about this text is the angel's response to his willingness to offer Isaac. In verse twelve it says, “Now I know that you truly fear God. You have not withheld from me even your only son.” Wow, what a testimony of faith! Thank God his son was spared!
We also see in the text the foretelling of the coming of Christ.
God’s willingness to give His only son, Jesus, as a sacrifice for all of humanity in order to bridge the gap between creator and creation is the greatest love story ever told.
If God sacrificed His best, why wouldn’t He ask for the best and most prized from us, His creation? Are we willing to give God our all?
This year the Lord is calling me to a place of sacrifice. I believe He is also calling all of us to a deeper level of intimacy with Him; and we do that by giving up what we hold dear AND the things that keep us from Him. This can include laying down finances, behaviors, habits, character flaws, burdens, unforgiveness, marriage, children, singleness or ministry at the feet of Jesus.
Like Abraham, God will tell us specifically what to sacrifice because often times it’s not up to us. God instructs us what to lay down. He specifically names what He wants us to lay on the altar before Him. Essentially, it is a test of Lordship. Lordship, in Christianity, is when a person acknowledges Christ’s ownership and gives up his or her personal rights.
Yielding to the Lordship of Christ involves total and unreserved obedience.
If He is Lord of your life you are going to do what He tells you to do. Thus, we are not supposed to hold anything back from the Lord.
In this frame of reference, we can identify that the idea of "sacrifice" is a great thing! The fruit far outweighs the pain of the process, but it’s a choice that every believer has to make. It’s an all or nothing call to die to our flesh.
Lord, I pray for your will over our will. I pray that we would surrender willingly with open arms rather than inhibiting your process with closed fists. You are calling us to a deeper place of obedience in our sacrifice. We have no need to fight you for what we want to keep because everything is more fruitful in your hands. I pray for a supernatural yield to your Lordship. May our trust be in You alone as You mold, prune, and grow us. We lay everything on the altar before you. In Jesus name, Amen.
Written by: Tabatha Parrott