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Read Genesis 22:1-14


Read Genesis 22:1-14

Some time later God tested Abraham; he called to him, “Abraham!” And Abraham answered, “Yes, here I am!”
2 “Take your son,” God said, “your only son, Isaac, whom you love so much, and go to the land of Moriah. There on a mountain that I will show you, offer him as a sacrifice to me.”
3 Early the next morning Abraham cut some wood for the sacrifice, loaded his donkey, and took Isaac and two servants with him. They started out for the place that God had told him about. 4On the third day Abraham saw the place in the distance. 5Then he said to the servants, “Stay here with the donkey. The boy and I will go over there and worship, and then we will come back to you.”
6 Abraham made Isaac carry the wood for the sacrifice, and he himself carried a knife and live coals for starting the fire. As they walked along together, 7Isaac said, “Father!”
He answered, “Yes, my son?”
Isaac asked, “I see that you have the coals and the wood, but where is the lamb for the sacrifice?”
8 Abraham answered, “God himself will provide one.” And the two of them walked on together.
9 When they came to the place which God had told him about, Abraham built an altar and arranged the wood on it. He tied up his son and placed him on the altar, on top of the wood. 10Then he picked up the knife to kill him. 11But the angel of the LORD called to him from heaven, “Abraham, Abraham!”
He answered, “Yes, here I am.”
12 “Don’t hurt the boy or do anything to him,” he said. “Now I know that you honour and obey God, because you have not kept back your only son from him.”
13 Abraham looked round and saw a ram caught in a bush by its horns. He went and got it and offered it as a burnt offering instead of his son. 14Abraham named that place “The LORD Provides”.b And even today people say, “On the LORD’s mountain he provides.”c


This is obviously a complicated story.  Today we know that if we feel that God is calling us to sacrifice someone then we are not hearing God.  We have a full revelation of God's person in Jesus Christ - Jesus who stands against this sort of behaviour.  But in Abraham's time the sacrifice of a child was common practice.  As Abraham is about to sacrifice Isaac God sends a ram...  This is a different sort of God, where Abraham came from the gods demanded the sacrifice of children; where Abraham is going, God, Jehovah, is shown to be the one who provides the sacrifice to redeem his children.


Thank you for the way in which you provide for my sin and frailty.  When I receive communion I receive the bread that you have provided, the blood that you have shed - I am made whole - not because of who I am, but because of who you are.  

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