HERE I AM
♦ After these things God tested Abraham and said to him, "Abraham!" And he said, "Here I am." (Gen 22:1)
♦ But the angel of the LORD called to him from heaven and said, "Abraham, Abraham!" And he said, "Here I am." (Gen 22:11)
Restfully available, instantly obedient… that is a phrase that has been stuck in my head.
Abraham going about his everyday life & God called him out to perform this odd task – offer Isaac.
Abraham was used to walking with God, and so Abraham discerns it is GOD speaking to him.
Abraham believes that God is wise & good, so He will not ask one to do random things.
Abraham believes that as his Creator, God has the right to command him to do anything.
Abraham believes that if God takes Isaac, God has a plan to fulfil His promise to Abraham anyway…
So Abraham is restfully available and instantly obedient…
Both when God said, ‘Go’ & when God said, “Stop”
Abraham had faith because he knew the CHARACTER of God… He didn’t know about God, he knew God through walking with Him, experiencing Him in his daily life.
How do we develop trust in someone? They promise to do something. They keep that promise, then we know that they are trustworthy. We are always watching people to see if their walk matches their talk… We trust only those people who show integrity in their words & actions.
How do we grow in faith?
✝ Jesus invites us to walk with Him, learning from Him not just how to live life, but also learning from Him who God is… [Rf Mt 11:29, Jn 16:25] By looking at Him, we know the heart & character of God. [Rf Jn 10:30, Jn 12:45, Heb 1:3]
God has given us the Holy Spirit who reveals God to us and enables us to walk in fellowship with Him. [Rf Jn 16:13-15, Rom 8:15, Gal 4:6]
Faith comes from hearing & hearing by/through the Word of God. [Rom 10:17]
The Holy Spirit + Word of God, open our ears to hear, and train us to discern the voice of God speaking to us above the voice of the world, self & the enemy.
Faith is the confidence we have to act on a particular truth/instruction/promise… because we KNOW who God is… and trust Him.
Faith enables us to stop being the god of our own lives. Faith leads us to lean on His wisdom & understanding. Faith leads us to do our everyday work, while being alert to the whisper of God calling our name… Faith leads us to be restfully available and instantly obedient
Thank You Lord Jesus for yoking Yourself to me, to teach me and share the load with me. Calm the restlessness in my thoughts & heart. Help me to be attentive to the things You are teaching me. Help me to be restfully available, and instantly obedient. For Your Glory. Amen
A Lesson on Obedience or Disobedience to God
Just before the destruction of Sodom and Gomorah the Angels urged Lot to flee with his wife and daughters from there.
But Lot HESITATED to obey the Angels. But the Lord in His mercy made the Angels lead them out of the city warning them neither to Look Back nor To Stop. But for God's mercy Lot who hesitated would have been destroyed.
The Lord tested Abraham's obedience and faith by asking him to sacrifice his beloved son as a burnt offering on Mt. Moriah. His obedience to God was IMPLICIT.
He believed God's promise regarding his son and proceeded for the sacrifice.
Just as he was going to slay his son God said, "Because you have obeyed Me your descendants through your son will be blessed".
Instead of the son God provided a ram for the sacrifice.
As for Lot's wife her Daring Disobedience made her Despise the warning of the Angel not to STOP or LOOK BACK. She looked back and became a pillar of salt.
Self-check for the day:
- Is my obedience to God with hesitation or is it implicit?
- Am I daring in my disobedience to God?
May the Lord help us to be implicit in our obedience to Him and receive His blessings.
Mrs Caroline Chellappa
Blessed to be a Blessing to the Blessed People
ALL IS WELL AT THE WELL
A well , in the Bible, is sometimes a place of well-being, protection and provision .
Sarah was barren , and so she allowed Abraham to go and sleep with her maidservant , Hagar. When she became pregnant, Sarah discovered the flaw in Hagar's plan. As a result Sarah treated Hagar harshly that she fled from Sarah ( v 1-6)
The angel of the Lord found her near a spring ( well v 14 ) in the desert (v 7). The Lord spoke to Hagar directly by calling her by name even though she was a slave . For the first time Hagar must have realised that the God of Abraham cared about her too, a foreinger and a slave .In her amazement Hagar refers to God as the One who sees me (v 13) . As a result of her experience, the spring was named Beer Lahai Roi meaning the well of the Living One who sees me. And it goes well with Hagar.
✅ Hagar no longer needed to flee. No matter how arrogantly she had behaved , no matter how Sarah treated her , Hagar had discovered that she was important in the eyes of the Lord
Abraham asked the chief servant- Eliezer to solemnly promise not to look for a wife for Isaac among the Canaanites but among Abraham's relatives (v 2-4). The journey started. Eliezer arrived at the town of Nahor , and was stationed himself near the town well. He knew that the women of the town would come to draw water at that time giving him an opportunity to observe them and select one as a potential bride for Isaac. The task was difficult. Eliezer prayed to the Lord God of his master Abraham (v12-14). He asked God to bless his mission and show kindness to Abraham. To cut the story short , the Lord answered his prayer even before he had finished praying ( v 15). Rebekah came and was chosen to be the bride of Isaac . All is well and the first step of God's Covenant with Abraham has started at the well.
Isaac continue to grow rich and wealthy. The Phillistines began to drive him away by restricting the water supply, stopping up the wells and filling them with the earth. Isaac reopened the wells but each time the Philistines herdsmen quarrelled with them and claimed the wells as their own. At last they dug a well went unchallenged, and Isaac named it Rehoboth which means room . He acknowledged that now the Lord has given us room , and we will flourish in the land ( v 21-22) . After that the Lord appeared to Isaac and assured him "I am with you .. I will bless you and will increase .. v 23-24
Jacob left his home and was on the way to Haran with a parental mission ( taking Laban' s daughter as his wife - 28:1-2).
Like Eliezer , Jacob stopped at a well at Paddan Aram (v 1-3). When Rachel arrived , Jacob offered his first service to his relatives as he watered his uncle's sheep ( v 9-10) . Years earlier , his mother Rebekah had offered similar service to his grandfather's camels (24:19-20). Jacob found his relatives, a place to stay in and to start his family life.
Moses had to flee from Pharaoh because he had killed a Egyptian (v 11-12 ,15) . He was lonely and tired after a long journey. He was sitting near a well in Midian when the daughter's of Reuel came to draw water from the well. While some shepherds came and drove them away , Moses got up and came to their rescue, and he watered their flocks. Finally Moses was invited to stay in Reuel's home ( v18-20) . The story of Moses - The deliverer has started right from the well in Midian .
A very popular passage which deals with the personal evangelism of our Lord with the Samaritan woman.
Jesus was tired and was taking rest at Jacob's well near Sychar. A Samaritan woman came to draw water from the well, and Jesus initiated the conversation. She was convinced that Jesus is the promised Messiah, and with great zeal and excitement she went back to the town and witnessed her experience to the people. As a result many Samaritans believed in Jesus because of her testimony ( v 39). Jesus stayed at Sychar for two days , and the Samaritans told the woman , " We no longer believe just because of what you said ; now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this man really is the Saviour of the world. 4:42
When we are in deep crisis and problems the Lord who sees you and me will refresh us with the Living Water ✝
Jesus said, come to me , all you who are weary and burdened , and I will give you rest Matthew 11: 28-29
Glory to God
Mark Boje , ArP
Obedience of Abraham
" Do not lay a hand on the boy",he said," Do not do anything to him. Now I know that you fear God, because you have not withheld from me your son, your only son". Genesis 22:12.
Abraham was a hundred years old when son Isaac was born to him( 21:5). God decided to test Abraham (22:1) and asked him to take his son Isaac to Mount Moriah and sacrifice him to the Lord.(22:2). God does not tempt us(James.1:13 ) He test us to prove our faith
Without a second thought, Abraham decided to obey God. He made a 3 day walk with his son..(22:4)...He was about to do the sacrifice ( 22:10). Then God called Abraham and asked him not to sacrifice his son. God was pleased about the obedience of Abraham. Abraham passed the test with 100% marks.
When God tests us, do we pass or fail? Am I willing to obey God to any extent? What / who is more important in my life ?
Lord, help me to trust you fully and to obey you completely.
Here we could see what happened to a man who walks only by sight.
Abraham was a man who walked by faith while Lot was just the opposite.
Mr Lot chose based on what he can see with his physical eyes alone. He never engaged God in his plans before taken an action/making choices. No wonder he lost everything at the end including his wife who loved earthly things more than her soul.
We found ourselves in similar scenario in our world today. We, most times, never involved God in our plans before taken actions until it backfires and then start running after God with fasting and prayers at various mountain.
When we commit our way(s) before the All knowing and Almighty God, He will definitely guilds us to make the best choice and to live a fulfilled lives => Proverbs 3:5-7
Abraham was a man of FAITH and he was relevant to God and his generation while Lot was a man of SIGHT, no wonder he was not relevant.
Which one are you?
Best to be a man of FAITH!
“Abraham, Abraham!” … “Do not lay your hand on the lad or do anything to him, for now I know that you fear God, since you have not withheld your son, your only son, from me.”
One of our favorite stories of the Bible is recorded in Genesis 22 where Abraham’s faith is totally tested by God.
God commands him to offer up his only son, Isaac, as a human sacrifice.
This is the son of promise, this is the one God Himself gave him………. the very gift of God’s grace to his heart
These must have been many questions arose in his heart.
"How can I find strength to do this?
“What should I tell to Sarah when I come back from that mountain empty-handed and she asks me what is the child? "
What a sleepless, troubled night of torture and heartbreak this man went through.
We may have some experiences like this in our life.
Sometimes we may scream,
"Why?" Why are you doing this to me, O Lord?
“I can’t sacrifice anymore, Lord!”
We may even go into depression.
But here we need to notice , ABRAHAM'S OBEDIENCE.
It is prompt and complete.
Though his heart is torn, yet he obeys God.
Abraham not only took God at His word, he fully trusted Him with the situation.
God never wanted Abraham to sacrifice his son.
He wanted Abraham’s trust and his surrendered heart.
When we pass through the time of sorrow, hardship, weakness and fear, ….
Remember the promises of God. trust Him and surrender to Him.
MAN'S DISAPPOINTMENTS ARE GOD'S APPOINTMENTS.
It is never too late for God.
Reflections... **Food from my Host's Kitchen Table
Take a Break with Jesus ☕
Abraham's Obedient Faith....The Mountain Moving Faith on the Mountain Top...Chapter 22:1-18
By faith Abraham had obeyed God’s call to leave his home in Ur and go forth to the land which God would show him. God promised to give Abraham a son and to make of him a great nation through which all families of the earth would be blessed, Genesis 12: 1-3, Hebrews 11:8-19.
God promised to give the land of Canaan to Abram and his descendants. But a few years had gone by and Abraham still had no son and the Canaanites, and not Abraham, was occupying the land they possessed.
But Abraham was still concerned because he had no son. He expressed that concern to the Lord in a submissive spirit “Adonai Yahweh,” which means “Sovereign Lord,” Genesis rr15:2 and the Lord graciously confirmed the promise of a son by taking Abraham out into the night, showing him the stars, and promising him that his descendants would be as numerous as those stars, Genesis 15:4-5. Abraham “believed in the Lord; and He reckoned it to him as righteousness”, Genesis 15:6. So Genesis 15:1-6, confirm God’s promise to Abraham of a son.
In Genesis 22, Abraham had his faith tested to sacrifice the son he waited for 25 years, his promised heir to become the father of many nations. He had to learn to grow from faith to faith.
Let us embark on a Journey with Abraham from his Dwelling Place to the Mountain Peak. Like some of us reading the Bible for the first time, Abraham was taking this journey for the first time.
What are the Lessons to be learnt from Abraham's Journey
God Appears to Abraham Seven Times in Genesis to Test His Growing Obedient Faith and the Ultimate Test was when he was asked to sacrific his only son a Type and Shadow of God's Sacrifice of His only Son.
Abraham belonged a family of Idol Worshippers and they made idols for a living. His Father was called out first but settled down in Haran until his death. The baton was passed on to Abraham who left everything to follow God. He had to learn to listen and follow God and inspite of his mistakes, he continued to obey God, Joshua 24:2-4, Genesis 11:31-32, Hebrew 11:8-9.
Seven Practical Steps of Faith to grow from Faith to Faith based on Genesis 22.
Here am I That is what God loves to hear each time he calls us to do something. Absolute obedience. We got to discern His Voice. When Abraham was called out of Ur he obeyed and again when he was called to offer his son he obeyed. Both times he didn't know where he was going, but he went. As we go, He will show us the path to take
It was on the third day that he saw the mountain that he was suppose to sacrifice Isaac and not on any other mountain. He was told to go to the mountainous region of Moriah and God would instruct him on the specfice mountain.
He did not have the GPS or Google Map. He would have climbed up the wrong mountain, got lost and could have turned back and gone home. But, he continued to be Sensitive to God's Voice and Discerning in his spirit and following the spiritual cats eye that must have lighted up his runway towards the right mountain.
You and I have to climb up the right mountain! Don't give up on your assignment, keep on moving and He will direct your path. God can't use a stationary vessel but a moving vessel.
Stage for the Sacrifice..V9,
Abraham bulit an Altar. He always built an Altar to Worship God. Even through Sweat and Stress, Abraham willing built the Altar of Faith Believing God Would raise his son up.
He told his servants that he was going to worship with his son and will return with him..V5, Hebrew 11:17-19. We should be able to to build the Altar of Faith wherever we are growing our mustard seed faith into a tree, Luke 17:5-6.
Sacrifice..V10, Abraham gave the Best Offering to God. A Sacrifice will involve Giving up something he loved for the Glory of God and for the Extension of His Kingdom. When we give up something valuable by Faith God give us something invaluable. He has given us His Son and there is no sacrifice to match that. Be willing to give the best for God. Is there something we are clinging to, that we should have been given up long ago?
Strengthened son...V12, Issac witnessed First hand his Father's Faith. He could never be the same person who went up the mountain. Issac would have been Strengthened in his Faith that helped him later on to reap a 100 fold in Famine. Genesis 26:12. Issac would have caught the faith he was taught. We are never the same after each crisis moment. We would have learnt a lot from each challenges to make us grow from strength to strength.
Showers of Blessings...V18,
Obedient Faith gives Everlasting Blessings for Generations to come. One act of obedience can leave a rich legacy for our future Generations. What we do today is a seed sown for tomorrow's harvest.
Abraham the Friend of God was the Father of Faith because he believed God without any evidence. Faith is the evidence of things not seen in the physical releam. It is a gift of God that has to be acknowledged and activated for it to grow in leaps and bounds according to the knowledge we have. Abraham walked and lived by faith and not by sight, Hebrews 11:1, 2Corinthians 5:7.
Child of God, Faith Walkers are risk takers. They are ready to be trailblazers.The Word of God is our compass and God's Positioning System (GPS). We need to navigate through life with the word of God, which is the voice of God to do the will of God. We have an inside guide, the Holy Spirit, to take us through the rocky Mountains and difficult terrains...Amen.