Crosspoint Church | Georgetown, TX

Surprise! You have a test today! (Part 1)

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This week’s devotions are based on this week’s message: Shadows: A Glimpse of a Substitute!  (WATCH HERE)

22      Some time later God tested Abraham. He said to him, “Abraham!” 

“Here I am,” he replied. 

2 Then God said, “Take your son, your only son, Isaac, whom you love, and go to the region of Moriah. Sacrifice him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains I will tell you about.” 

3 Early the next morning Abraham got up and saddled his donkey. He took with him two of his servants and his son Isaac. When he had cut enough wood for the burnt offering, he set out for the place God had told him about. 


Obviously Abraham had a close connection to the Lord as he didn’t ask for two forms of identity or question whether he was hearing voices.  He had heard and learned the voice of the Lord and the Lord gave him a challenging task: Give back to me your one and only Son.

Whenever a test was assigned, there was a subtle hope the teacher would give you the questions that would be on the test with the answers those questions demanded.  So it is with our spiritual lives, isn’t it?  Don’t you wish that every test to our faith was given to us in advance with the proper answer spelled out for us so there is no doubt in our mind as to what we should do?

Abraham didn’t get the question in advance, but over the years his experience with the Lord had let him learn the answers.

He knew that Isaac was a gift from God as he fathered him at 100 years of age and his wife Sarah at 90.  Physically this was an impossibility which they laughed at, but God’s power made it possible.  

Abraham knew that God had made a promise that he would have many descendants.  This promise was given 25 years before Isaac came on the scene and after a wrong answer of having Ishmael with his servant Hagar.

The test for Abraham was whether he would hang on to his son and love him more than loving God.  The test question: “Abraham, what is the first priority of your heart?”

This is a good test question for us too.  Even though we can look back at the track record of God working in our hearts, we are still tempted to let other things and other people take a first priority.  We may even have good excuses, but still come up with wrong answers.  We can justify working every Sunday by thinking that is the only option to provide for our family.  We can justify overlooking a sinful behavior in a family member to keep the relationship over the concern for the spiritual wellbeing of the individual.  We can choose friends that lead us to activity that isn’t God-pleasing thinking that we don’t want to be alone.  The list can go on.  Any test question that God provides that challenges the first commandment (You shall have no other gods.), is a tough one for us to always get right.  We love the people around us.  We love the experiences the world presents to us.  We love our ego and pride.

And so all too often we fail this test question.  And so we repent and ask God’s Spirit for the strength of faith that Abraham exhibited.  This whole account he didn’t waver.  He got up the next morning and went.  He took his son to the top of the mountain and was ready to take his life and light the fire.  But God saw Abraham had answered the test correctly and stopped him:

Genesis 22:11 But the angel of the LORD called out to him from heaven, “Abraham! Abraham!” 

“Here I am,” he replied. 

12 “Do not lay a hand on the boy,” he said. “Do not do anything to him. Now I know that you fear God, because you have not withheld from me your son, your only son.” 

May God give us the same resolve to always keep the love of the Lord the first priority in our heart!


Apply: What things in your life are the greatest temptation to dislodge the LORD from the primary position in your heart?

Prayer: Lord, thank you for your love, grace and faithfulness to forgive us when we fail the tests to our faith and for your willingness to restore and strengthen us for the tests that will come.  AMEN.

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