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The Daily Word of Righteousness
And he said, Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of. (Genesis 22:2)
This is what God desires to be true of us. Anything and everything we possess must be crucified and then raised again before it is our possession for eternity. The act of crucifixion destroys the hold the relationship or thing or circumstance has on us.
Sometimes the object we idolize is lawful. This is difficult for people to understand. Why would God want me to cease developing the musical ability He Himself gave me? Music is not a sin, why is God not permitting me to pursue the study of my musical instrument? Why is God not allowing me to continue a relationship with this person? Why is God calling me into another line of work? In my present job I can make much more money and give it to the church.
Sometimes the sacrifices God requires of us tear at our very soul. Surely God would not deny me this that I want so badly. God is a good God. God wants me to be happy.
What must Abraham have thought as he made the three-day journey to Moriah with the heir of the Divine promise? Imagine Abraham's concern over Sarah—how she would feel when he returned without Isaac!
Every one of God's rulers must be tested sternly in the area of obedience. There must be no chance of rebellion when the all-powerful sons of God are entrusted with the oversight of the creation.
The faith of Abraham saw beyond the grave and reckoned God would raise Isaac from the dead. The faith of the Lord Jesus penetrated past the immediate fear of being cut off from God and considered the promises to Christ written in the unchangeable Word. The faith of the Apostle Paul considered every accomplishment and ability as garbage so he could boast only in the cross—in his own inability to think anything or do anything apart from Christ.
Obedience is such an important component of faith we may refer to obedience as a synonym of faith and disobedience as a synonym of unbelief.
The Heroes of Faith
By faith Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau concerning things to come. (Hebrews 11:20)
Isaac's faith was that of the Spirit-filled person to whom the Spirit is testifying of that which is to take place at a later time. By faith the experienced believer looks to the Spirit of God rather than to physical circumstances in order to understand the future. God's servants are blind and deaf to the present world but they see and hear every word that comes from the mouth of God. Because the saint is aware of what lies ahead he prepares himself accordingly.
People who live by their own strength and wisdom do not have this kind of vision. They walk in darkness and are caught by surprise. They eat, sleep, play, work, reproduce, give and receive in marriage, buy, sell, plant, reap; and then the flood comes and carries them away in their ignorance.
By faith Jacob, when he was a dying, blessed both the sons of Joseph; and worshipped, leaning upon the top of his staff. (Hebrews 11:21)
Jacob looked ahead and saw the tribes of Israel. By faith Jacob set Ephraim before Manasseh and spoke of the nations that would be blessed through Ephraim.
To be continued.