Maine Theme: From generation to generation God kept His promise to provide a Savior.
Read Together: Genesis 22:1-12, and Hebrews 11:17. Define the main idea of these passages.
Study: What was the meaning of this test? What spiritual lessons come from this amazing event?
Apply: What does the story of Abraham and Isaac on Mount Moriah say to you personally about your faith and how you manifest it?
Share: Your friend tells you that it sounds like God is contradicting his own law in forbidding human sacrifices. How do you make sense of this apparent contradiction? Hint: See the note at the end of this page.
Read Together: Genesis 22:13-14 and Romans 5:6-8. Define the main idea of these passages.
Study: How do these verses help us understand what happened at the Cross, which is prefigured in the sacrifice here on Mount Moriah?
Apply: How does what happened here help us better understand what happened at the cross and what God has suffered in our behalf? What should our response be to what has been done for us?
Share: Your friend comments, “My pastor preaches that when we become Christians God makes us highly favored and prosperous. Instead of calling us to sacrifice, God calls us to prosperity.” How do you answer your friend, particularly in light of Genesis 22?
Read Together: Genesis 24. Define the main idea of this passage.
Study: Why is Abraham so concerned that his son not marry a woman from the Canaanites?
Apply: Why is it so comforting to know that while not all things are God’s will, He is still in charge? How do prophecies like Daniel 2, for instance, prove this point to us?
Share: Your friend says that God’s providence in the story of Isaac and Rebekah prove that our entire lives and predestined and predetermined. How do you respond to your friend, especially in light of Genesis 24:58?
Read Together: Genesis 24:67-25:8. Define the main idea of this passage.
Study: What is the meaning of these final events in the life of Abraham?
Apply: In the end, God kept His promise to Abraham. How does God’s faithfulness to Abraham encourage you?
Share: Your friend asks, “What is the greatest promise anyone ever made to you and actually kept?” How does that faithful friend help you appreciate the promises God has made to us?
Note: “They were told that their messages were not for themselves, but for you. And now this Good News has been announced to you by those who preached in the power of the Holy Spirit sent from heaven. It is all so wonderful that even the angels are eagerly watching these things happen.” 1 Peter 1:12 NLT
“The sacrifice required of Abraham was not alone for his own good, nor solely for the benefit of succeeding generations; but it was also for the instruction of the sinless intelligences of heaven and of other worlds. The field of the controversy between Christ and Satan–the field on which the plan of redemption is wrought out–is the lesson book of the universe. Because Abraham had shown a lack of faith in God’s promises, Satan had accused him before the angels and before God of having failed to comply with the conditions of the covenant, and as unworthy of its blessings. God desired to prove the loyalty of His servant before all heaven, to demonstrate that nothing less than perfect obedience can be accepted, and to open more fully before them the plan of salvation.
Heavenly beings were witnesses of the scene as the faith of Abraham and the submission of Isaac were tested. The trial was far more severe than that which had been brought upon Adam. Compliance with the prohibition laid upon our first parents involved no suffering, but the command to Abraham demanded the most agonizing sacrifice. All heaven beheld with wonder and admiration Abraham’s unfaltering obedience. All heaven applauded his fidelity. Satan’s accusations were shown to be false. God declared to His servant, “Now I know that thou fearest God [notwithstanding Satan’s charges], seeing thou hast not withheld thy son, thine only son from Me.” God’s covenant, confirmed to Abraham by an oath before the intelligences of other worlds, testified that obedience will be rewarded.
It had been difficult even for the angels to grasp the mystery of redemption–to comprehend that the Commander of heaven, the Son of God, must die for guilty man. When the command was given to Abraham to offer up his son, the interest of all heavenly beings was enlisted. With intense earnestness they watched each step in the fulfillment of this command. When to Isaac’s question, “Where is the lamb for a burnt offering?” Abraham made answer, “God will provide Himself a lamb;” and when the father’s hand was stayed as he was about to slay his son, and the ram which God had provided was offered in the place of Isaac–then light was shed upon the mystery of redemption, and even the angels understood more clearly the wonderful provision that God had made for man’s salvation. 1 Peter 1:12.” -Patriarchs and Prophets, Pages 154-155.