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. 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.”Genesis 22:13-14
God promised Abraham a whole nation of heirs long before he had even a single son. When God gave him Isaac, unbelievable Isaac, that was the end of it, right? The promise fulfilled, Abraham’s faith proved, everyone living happily ever after.
No, not quite. Too many people forget God the moment they get what they want from Him. Would Abraham? I think just to show us (and maybe Abraham himself) what this man’s faith was made of, God tested him. He asked for Isaac back. The thing – the one thing – Abraham had wanted more than any other, the one thing that had made him happier than anything else in all the world, God asked for back.
Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a dream fulfilled is a tree of life.Proverbs 13:12
God did not demand. He did not take, though He could have in a blink. He asked. All of the hope, all of the joy, all of the peace Abraham had felt since Isaac arrived – it would have made him sick, wholly and completely heartsick, to give up that son.
And what does Abraham do?
He doesn’t miss a beat. Isaac asks where the sacrifice is, and he says God will provide it. What he likely means is that God has provided it already – God gave him Isaac, and God asked for Isaac as a sacrifice.
Would you give back to God all that He has provided for you? ALL of it?
And then, in the moment of obedience, God stopped Abraham’s obeying hand (and Abraham obeyed again, probably a lot more easily this time!). God provided a ram instead. God praised him and blessed him for his obedience, and said, “THIS is why, Abraham. This is why the world is blessed through you.” Not because of his wealth, not because of his perfect parenting, not because of his moral compass, but because of his obedient faith. Because he would give back to God everything he had asked God to give to him. He trusted Him that much.
Abraham knew. Abraham had seen God take two bodies as good as dead and create a child from them. He had seen a miracle before, and he had not forgotten that GOD provides. And in that last possible second before he did the unthinkable, before he harmed his son and his own heart beyond human repair, God provided again.
Because that is who He is. It is His name, Yahweh Yireh. The God who provides. ❤
Thought seed: Do I trust God to provide again, even after He has already provided before? Or do I think I’ve reached the limit of His provision?