December 27th – Did God say That ?


All believers find the story of Abraham being tested by God a real problem. You remember the story from Genesis Chapter 22, when God apparently orders Abraham to sacrifice his beloved and long-promised son Isaac as a burnt offering.
A million sermons have been preached in churches, and synagogues, on obedience and passing the test by being willing to do what God commands, no matter how horrific it may seem. The real problem is not God saying “I must be sure you love me more than your son”, but rather did Abraham get it wrong in the first place? Would the God we see in Jesus actually put any man to that test? What about the effect on the boy – tied down on an altar about to be ritually butchered? Doesn’t that qualify in any age as an appalling act of fanaticism? What do we say to modern fanatics who not only seek to murder government leaders, destroy innocent hostages, even perhaps obtain an atomic bomb to press their wild belief that ‘God is telling them to do it’? With one voice we shout “You’ve got it wrong. God doesn’t give orders like that”. Hence the problem with this story of Abraham. Perhaps we should emphasise the story’s profound lesson, not of Abraham’s willingness to go the whole hog, but of God’s intervention in stopping him.
I wonder how many things this past year we have pursued, certain that God was telling us to do what later we found out, we had got wrong? This should call us to be more discerning in discovering and pursuing matters of life and death. But wait, listen to this, from Romans Chapter 8 v. 31-34
What then shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all – how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. Who is he that condemns? Christ Jesus, who died – more than that, who was raised to life – is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us.
A Prayer:
Lord, since we are so fallible and flawed, so open to error and self-deception, teach us to pray with minds wide open to all your guidance, lest we pursue our narrow beliefs and hear not the clear commands of your written word.

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Thought 4 The Day

It is not great men who change the world, but weak men in the hands of a great God. (The Heavenly Man)

Through the year calendar


Click on any previous date in the above calendar to read the relevant Through The Year post
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