Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Isaac -- Part Two


Genesis 22:9-14
9 Then they came to the place
of which God had told him;
and Abraham built the altar there
and arranged the wood,
and bound his son Isaac
and laid him on the altar,
on top of the wood.
10 Abraham stretched out his hand
and took the knife
to slay his son.
11 But the angel of the LORD
called to him from heaven and said,
“Abraham, Abraham!”
And he said, “Here I am.”
12 He said, “Do not stretch out your hand
against the lad,
and do nothing to him;
for now I know that you fear God,
since you have not withheld your son,
your only son,
from Me.”
13 Then Abraham raised his eyes and looked,
and behold,
behind him a ram caught in the thicket by his horns;
and Abraham went and took the ram
and offered him up for a burnt offering
in the place of his son.
14 Abraham called the name of that place
The LORD Will Provide,
as it is said to this day,
“In the mount of the LORD it will be provided.”

Does this post nullify the post from yesterday? No.

God richly gave Abraham an opportunity to see his heart.

For our bible time the other day we bumped into Psalm 17. I was struck with this piece of text:
"Though you probe my heart
and examine me at night,
though you test me..."
Psalm 17:3a

Trials provide a rich opportunity for God to reveal to us what is in our hearts. Psalm 139 is another great text that reveals this.
 1 O LORD, you have searched me
   and you know me.
2 You know when I sit and when I rise;
   you perceive my thoughts from afar.
3 You discern my going out and my lying down;
   you are familiar with all my ways.
4 Before a word is on my tongue
   you know it completely, O LORD.

AND

23 Search me, O God, and know my heart;
   test me and know my anxious thoughts.
24 See if there is any offensive way in me,
   and lead me in the way everlasting.

Abraham, through adversity, was able to see what his heart was capable of. God knew in advance all of the details. God provided the ram. But, God wanted Abraham to know his heart. Truthfully, I think God wanted Isaac to see what obedience looked like as well.  For sure, He penned the parallelism/foreshadow of Christ's sacrifice.

Beloved, what trials are you facing? What is the Lord revealing to you about your heart? Do you like what you see?

I have been faced with some pressing pressures lately. I don't like what my heart has revealed to me. It has required confession and repentance. But, praise God the Lord revealed to me the areas that needed pruning. It is worse for that to just hover below the surface--unnoticed and un-dealt-with. How excellent it is when the Lord reveals and prunes!

Thank You, Lord, for testing me. Thank You for examining me. Thank You for revealing my heart to me. Thank You, Lord, for the gift of repentance. For the beauty of confession. For the peace that comes with obedience. You are worthy of praise. I adore You. AMEN

Journeying sweetly,

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