Hymn 330, “Gladly Yielding All”
I have been unsettled in what to speak about, and what helped me to decide, not much has been spoken about Abraham, and he was called “Father.” I like to speak from Chapter 22 of Genesis, and from the standpoint of hymn 330, “Upon a Lonely Mount obeying God’s behest, a father offered up his son, it was his very best.” I was thinking about the lonely part ahead, and sympathetic toward our causes tomorrow; it is different to stand alone, and that is the test, it’s easy to do with a lot of people, and even give our life in a crowd, but vows made in holy places must be paid when alone, and where people are against us. God did prove Abraham. I like “prove” better than “tempt.” God doesn’t plant temptation, but does have the right to prove us, and us proving Him. This is the proving ground like in Detroit the big three automakers, all of their cars are proved and tested, and this is our proving ground here.
God has a purpose to test us. Hebrews 11:17, “By faith Abraham when he was tried offered up Isaac, and he that received the promise offered up his only begotten son;” this sounded like a blank contradiction he promised. He said go and offer, and Abraham went early and did not procrastinate. How favourable it compares with God offering up Jesus. God had in mind to give this only son of Abraham. I believe God wanted to give this picture to the world, and it compares, the only difference is the emphasis on the Father. Jesus was sacrificed for 33 ½ years.
Abraham arose and went on a mission, and I believe Abraham would be praying carefully in selecting those two young men like when Jesus in Mark 14-32, 33, chose three: Peter, James, and John. Everything so far is similar, and the two men tarried while they went yonder. (This was Abraham and Isaac in Gethsemane.)
Abraham gave attention to details, he took wood I feel there was trees, and there would have been plenty of dead wood he could have said, “Why take wood?” It was hard to start a fire, they could have left the fire behind, but Abraham left nothing to chance. He split the wood, taking no chance. Attention to detail is the only proof of sincerity, and we can’t leave anything to chance in our service to God, or be slipshod, but must be diligent and give attention to detail, if we want our service to be right with God.
Why three days in the wilderness? God has always wanted a separated people. Pharaoh said, “Why three days?…don’t go that far,” but Pharaoh could get no compromise with Moses….the world will say, “Why this separation? Come to our Church, you could be a good influence,” but God’s people must be separated and apart from the world, and that is what God wants, and Abraham said, “We will go yonder and worship.”
We don’t want to leave out Mary, she truly worshiped God…sacrifice and worship can not be separated, and must be accompanied with a true spirit of worship and devotion. In the world if you can give enough, it makes everything all right. But it is not the gift that makes the giver acceptable, but it is the giver that makes the gift acceptable.
Abraham said I and the lad will go yonder, and return unto you, this is when Abraham acknowledged his belief in the resurrection. How old was Isaac? Abraham laid the wood upon Isaac’s back…(a big young man, and willing) Sarah was 127 years old when she died. Sarah was 90 years old, so I say Isaac was 21 years old and full grown. Another type of resemblance with Christ and the cross, now Isaac was doing the same…. Isaac had seen sacrifice before, and he said, “Here is the fire and wood, but where is the lamb?” Abraham said, “God will provide the sacrifice….”
They both went together, father and son, a hundred years difference in age, we all go together, father and son, no generation gap, and we can say, “Amen,” and there was no generation gap then.
In the 9th verse where Abraham laid the wood and bound it on his son’s back, Isaac had to be willing… Abraham was gladly yielding all, but don’t overlook the sacrifice of Isaac. I feel a conversation between father and son, Isaac would say, “Isn’t there any other way?” same as Jesus in the garden praying about the “cup”….
Abraham bound Isaac willingly and took the knife and an angel said unto him out of Heaven, “Abraham, Abraham.” He said, “Here am I” and he said, “Lay not thine hand upon the lad, neither do thou anything unto him for now I know thou fearest God; seeing thou has not withheld thy son, thine only son from me. Now I know thou fearest Me.” God had used similar words when He talked about destroying Sodom and Gomorrah…”Now I know you fear Me,” then the ram appeared and Abraham got a vision of Jesus that day, and there was gladness in his heart also Isaac would forever be grateful for that Lamb, and we too can be thankful, and this was a picture for the world.