Faith-filled Fear: BRD for Jan 7-11

In chapter 22 just as Abraham is about to drop the dagger into Isaac’s chest as a sacrifice unto God, the Lord stops him and said, “Do not lay your hand on the boy or do anything to him, for now I know that you fear God, seeing you have not withheld your son, your only son, from me.” It is interesting to note that God did not say that Abraham has proven his faith, but rather has proven that he properly fears the Lord. It is not as if this wasn’t an act of extraordinary faith. Before God commanded Abraham to sacrifice his only son, He had made a promise to Abraham concerning his only son. In Genesis 21:12 the Lord said, “for through Isaac shall your offspring be named.” This is why Abraham so confidently told his servants in chapter 22, “Stay here with the donkey; I and the boy will go over there and worship and come again to you.” Abraham believed God’s promise in 21:12 to the extent that he was readily obedient in chapter 22. He believed God’s word was so sure that even if he sacrificed Isaac, God would still somehow bring him back to life and raise offspring from him JUST AS HE PROMISED HE WOULD DO! Surely, Abraham was acting in faith in chapter 22. But God commended his fear not his faith. What is this fear? Abraham’s faith is part of how we are to understand the kind of fear to have before God. It was a faith-filled fear. This doesn’t mean scared-to-death of God. And it does mean more than just superb respect and reverence. Abraham believed God’s Word to the point that he was more fearful of not obeying than of obeying. A faith-filled fear.