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Friday, March 20, 2015

God's Testing

Bible Questions Answered:
“Pastor why did God tempt Abraham as he did? Did he think Abraham lacked faithfulness...”
Ronald/ Nagoya, Japan

Bible Answer:
Bible Texts:

Genesis 22:1-19 NLT
1 Some time later, God tested* (KJV-Tempt) Abraham’s faith. “Abraham!” God called. “Yes,” he replied. “Here I am.”

*Tempt-Hebrew: Nasah: To try, to prove,

2 “Take your son, your only son—yes, Isaac, whom you love so much—and go to the land of Moriah. Go and sacrifice him as a burnt offering on one of the mountains, which I will show you.”
3 The next morning Abraham got up early. He saddled his donkey and took two of his servants with him, along with his son, Isaac. Then he chopped wood for a fire for a burnt offering and set out for the place God had told him about.
4 On the third day of their journey, Abraham looked up and saw the place in the distance.
5 “Stay here with the donkey,” Abraham told the servants. “The boy and I will travel a little farther. We will worship there, and then we will come right back.”
6 So Abraham placed the wood for the burnt offering on Isaac’s shoulders, while he himself carried the fire and the knife. As the two of them walked on together,
7 Isaac turned to Abraham and said, “Father?” “Yes, my son?” Abraham replied. “We have the fire and the wood,” the boy said, “but where is the sheep for the burnt offering?”
8 “God will provide a sheep for the burnt offering, my son,” Abraham answered. And they both walked on together.
9 When they arrived at the place where God had told him to go, Abraham built an altar and arranged the wood on it. Then he tied his son, Isaac, and laid him on the altar on top of the wood.
10 And Abraham picked up the knife to kill his son as a sacrifice.
11 At that moment The Angel Of The Lord called to him from heaven, “Abraham! Abraham!” “Yes,” Abraham replied. “Here I am!”
12 “Don’t lay a hand on the boy!” The Angel said. “Do not hurt him in any way, for now I know that you truly fear God. You have not withheld from Me even your son, your only son.
13 Then Abraham looked up and saw a ram caught by its horns in a thicket. So he took the ram and sacrificed it as a burnt offering in place of his son.
14 Abraham named the place Yahweh-Yireh (which means “the Lord will provide”). To this day, people still use that name as a proverb: “On the mountain of The Lord it will be provided.”
15 Then The Angel Of The Lord called again to Abraham from heaven.
16 “This is what The Lord says: Because you have obeyed me and have not withheld even your son, your only son, I swear by my own name that
17 I will certainly bless you. I will multiply your descendants beyond number, like the stars in the sky and the sand on the seashore. Your descendants will conquer the cities of their enemies.
18 And through your descendants all the nations of the earth will be blessed—all because you have obeyed Me.”
19 Then they returned to the servants and traveled back to Beersheba, where Abraham continued to live.

Notice well, the faith of Abraham.
Verse 6 “We will worship there” (Abraham and his son Isaac.)
Verse 8 “God will provide a sheep for the burnt offering, my son,” Abraham answered.

God has the sovereign right to “test,” His people, note He does not test those who are not His people.
And God does not “tempt,” as does the devil, (incite to do evil).

James 1:13 NLT
And remember, when you are being tempted, do not say, “God is tempting me.” God is never tempted to do wrong, and He never tempts anyone else.

James 1:13,14 CEV
13 Don’t blame God when you are tempted! God cannot be tempted by evil, and He doesn’t use evil to tempt others.
14 We are tempted by our own desires that drag us off and trap us.

God proved the faith of His servant Abraham, and he came forth as pure gold.

Hebrews 11:17-19 NLT
17 It was by faith that Abraham offered Isaac as a sacrifice when God was testing him (KJV Tried*). Abraham, who had received God’s promises, was ready to sacrifice his only son, Isaac,
18 even though God had told him, “Isaac is the son through whom your descendants will be counted.”

Genesis 21:12 NLT
But God told Abraham, “Do not be upset over the boy and your servant. Do whatever Sarah tells you,
for Isaac is the son through whom your descendants will be counted.

19 Abraham reasoned that if Isaac died, God was able to bring him back to life again. And in a sense, Abraham did receive his son back from the dead.

Tried-Greek: Peirazo (Pi-rad-zo): Scrutinize, examine, prove, try.

Yes, our God, may test our faith, may we as Abraham of old, stand true to our Living God.

Psalm 17:3 NLT
You have tested my thoughts and examined my heart in the night. You have scrutinized me and found nothing wrong.

Psalm 66:10 KJV
For thou, O God, hast proved us: thou hast tried us, as silver is tried.

James 1:12 GNT
Happy are those who remain faithful under trials, because when they succeed in passing such a test, they will receive as their reward the life which God has promised to those who love Him.

I Peter 1:6,7 NLT
6 So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you must endure many trials for a little while.
7 These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold—though your faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when your faith remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world.