A thought to ponder-A New Day, A New Way
Well, we are on way into this new year. I wanted to share a thought to ponder that will help that you can use throughout the year to come. You know it is interesting to know that the entire Bible is a story that repeatedly speaks to the relationship that God desires to have with His creation. We are His creation, that’s right, each one of us represents His creation.
God’s desire has always been to have a personal, intimate and exciting relationship with each of His creation, you and me. Throughout the word of God, there is story after story of how God has in His way had His will and purpose accomplished in the life of His people.
Genesis is the book of beginnings and it is the story of the creation of the world and God’s very first relationship with his greatest creation, man. You remember, don’t you? In the cool of the evening, God would come. Scripture tells us that He would come in the evening and hang out with Adam and Eve. They probably talked about what was happening in the Garden of Eden. There were certainly questions about how to do this or that and God would give them the direction they needed. However, there was a cool evening when He came and found Adam and Eve hiding; sin had made its way to the garden, to this part of God’s creation. Things were never going to the same again.
You remember in Genesis of Noah and the flood. Judgment on His creation and the preservation of Noah and his family. Then there was Abraham and Sarah who had waited so long for the promise of God of a son. Isaac, the promised son, born in the old age of Sarah his mother. God had a will and a purpose for Abraham, Sarah and Isaac.
God has never changed; He has a will and purpose for you and your life, too. Can you know the will of God in your life? Absolutely and it begins by understanding that the focus of the Bible is God. What His desire is, what He wants to see accomplished through His creation
I believe that one of the most exciting and yet terrifying stories in God’s word is the story of Abraham and Isaac at Mount Moriah.
Take a break for a few minutes and familiarize yourself by reading Genesis 22:1-19.
Glad to have you back. Let me continue. For Abraham and for Isaac this was A New Day, A New Way. Things were never going to be the same again as to God working in and through there lives.
You can learn 5 things about a God-centered life today from the account in Genesis.
1) A God-centered life will look to see where God is working with no hesitation to join Him
In verse 1 we read After these things God tested Abraham and said to him, “Abraham!” And he said, “Here I am.”
For Abraham, the response was the only one he could offer. This was not a question that required discussion as the purpose of God’s call, or the need of calling Abraham. The response of the God-centered person will always be: “Here I am”.
What was the purpose of the call on Abraham? “God tested Abraham” is what the scripture says.
In the Hebrew, the word for “tested” is “naw-saw”-meaning “to test, the implication to attempt: adventure, proving or trying.
For each of you who are Christian, God is always at work in our lives and lives of others. Jesus said and John recorded in his gospel that “my father has always been at work, just as I am at work”. The Father who is God, creature, savior, judge is always and at all times at work in and inviting us to join Him. To accomplish His will and purpose. For Abraham, at this point in his life, it was God’s will and purpose to test Abraham.
So here a question you can ask, “God what is your will and purpose?” Now how do you respond to God and His call to join Him to do His will and purpose?
2) A God-centered life is one that is never responsible for what he does if he has joined God to have His will and purpose worked out in their life
Verses 2-3 we read 2He 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.” 3 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 from the first verse that God is testing Abraham. God said 2He 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.”
God instructs Abraham on what to do. Then verse 3 So Abraham rose early in the morning, saddled his donkey,…
I think it is exciting to see that Abraham asked no question of God. He “rose early in the morning and saddled his donkey”. This indicates a very obedient man. God has said to go offer your only son Isaac as a burnt offering. Could Abraham have questioned God? Sure but he knew better than that and if you read the rest of the third verse, you will see that Abraham knew what was necessary to take to offer the burnt offering.
Then we see in the rest of verse 3 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.
Abraham was not responsible for what God was going to do. He was obedient, and that many times is a problem for us. Remember, in the God-centered life the responsibility of doing as God directs is not yours.
3) A God-centered life will come to a point of the decision concerning completing the desire of the Father
Look at verses 4-5 4 On the third day Abraham looked up and saw the place in the distance. 5 He said to his servants, “Stay here with the donkey while I and the boy go over there. We will worship and then we will come back to you.
First of all, Abraham was going to do just as God had instructed. He was following God’s direction. Now the last part of the 5th verse has two important elements …“Stay here with the donkey while I and the boy go over there. We will worship and then we will come back to you.
Abraham said the boy go over there. We will worship and then we will come back to you. The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia says the OT idea of worship was “the reverential attitude of mind and body or both, combined with the more generic notions of religious adoration, obedience, service”. Both physically and mentally, Abraham was going to adore, obey and serve God.
Secondly, Abraham said “and then we will come back to you” and I believe that Abraham both knew and understood that the promises of God previously made would be honored by God, in some way. You have to go back to Genesis 15:4b-5 to see God’s first revealing of His promise to bless Abraham, who is then known as Abram. …“This man will not be your heir, but a son who is your own flesh and blood will be your heir.” 5 He took him outside and said, “Look up at the sky and count the stars—if indeed you can count them.” Then he said to him, “So shall your offspring be.”
Now you might say, “well didn’t he have a son with Hagar the handmaid?” Well yes, he did but that was the hand of man and not the hand of God. Look at Genesis 17:15-16 15 God also said to Abraham, “As for Sarai your wife, you are no longer to call her Sarai; her name will be Sarah. 16 I will bless her and will surely give you a son by her. I will bless her so that she will be the mother of nations; kings of peoples will come from her.” You can see here that by Sarah the promise of God was fulfilled not Hagar.
4) A God-centered life requires that we join Him by doing exactly what He wills and purposes
Abraham and Isaac follow the directions of the Lord. We read in verses 6-9 6 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. 7 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?” 8 Abraham said, “God will provide for Himself the lamb for a burnt offering, my son.” So they went both of them together. 9 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.
Of course, we see the obedience of Abraham however, look at the obedience of Isaac. He goes with his father and is bound and laid on an offer used for burning a sacrifice to God. In the recording of this event, there is no indication that either one faltered or questioned the request of the respective father. God’s will and purpose would be completed in Abraham’s life, by obedience in worship and action.
5) A God-centered life in His will and purpose will come to the point of “laying it all on the alter”.
When Abraham came to the Mount at Moriah, he came prepared to be obedient to God and that obedience would be:
3) Marked by humility
4) Inspired by trust in a personal God
It was A New Day, A New Way for Abraham and for Isaac to both experience and trust God. Abraham took the knife and raised it to kill his son Isaac. For him, the offering on the table was his son.
What is it for you? A possession, a desire, maybe a belief. Obstacles that separate us from the fullness of His will and purpose. I think that verse 14 is one of the most special in this text. 14 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.”
Abraham has walked closely with God for several days. Being told to take Isaac and offer him as a sacrifice has tested his faith. He has been obedient and then seen the deliverance of the sacrifice and the provision of a substitute. Yet now as he prepares to go home he names the place “The –Lord –will –provide”. Jehovah-Jireh: plainly meaning that the Lord sees and provides for the necessities of His servants.
Is this can be A New Day, A New Way for you by following the example of Abraham.
-Develop a personal relationship with God
-Hear and heed His invitations to do His will
-Believe He is working and calling you
-Adjust your life, your thoughts, your motives, and be truly obedient and experience everything that God will and purposes for your life
Because it’s A New Day, A New Way and God will be Glorified in your obedience to Him.
A thought to ponder,