A Call and a Choice

Before I jump into this post, can I ask a favor? Please read the story of Abraham in Genesis 12-25. It will provide the backdrop for what I am writing today.

Today, let’s zoom in on one chapter today. This has to be one of my favorite (yet humbling) passages of scripture. To describe it seems pointless. Just read it. In fact, I am going to copy in this post with some additional thoughts or questions. Anything I add will be underlined and the rest is the text from Genesis 22: 1-19 from the New International Version.

Ready? I hope so because God wants to speak to you and I through his word.

Genesis 22: 1-14

1Some time later God tested Abraham. He said to him, “Abraham!”

“Here I am,” he replied. When God calls your name, what is your response?

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

3Early, (Abrahams didn’t wait. He obeyed.) the next morning Abraham got up and loaded his donkey. He took with him two of his servants and his son Isaac. Why wait? Start obeying today. When he had cut enough wood for the burnt offering, he set out for the place God had told him about.

4On the third day Abraham looked up and saw the place in the distance.

5He said to his servants, “Stay here with the donkey while I and the boy go over there. We will worship and then we will come back to you.” Abraham believed that they would come back. What is your attitude in the middle of a test?

6Abraham took the wood for the burnt offering and placed it on his son Isaac, and he himself carried the fire and the knife. (Take what you can. What you don’t have, God will provide) As the two of them went on together,

7Isaac spoke up and said to his father Abraham, “Father?”

“Yes, my son?” Abraham replied.

“The fire and wood are here,” Isaac said, “but where is the lamb for the burnt offering?”

8Abraham answered, “God himself will provide the lamb for the burnt offering, my son.” And the two of them went on together.

9When they reached the place God had told him about, Abraham built an altar there and arranged the wood on it. He bound his son Isaac and laid him on the altar, on top of the wood. (Who or what is your Isaac? Is there anything that competes with God for first place in your life?)

10Then he reached out his hand and took the knife to slay his son.

11But 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.”

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13Abraham looked up and there in a thicket he saw a rama caught by its horns. He went over and took the ram and sacrificed it as a burnt offering instead of his son.

14So Abraham called that place The Lord Will Provide. And to this day it is said, “On the mountain of the Lord it will be provided.” (Success! Now, who gets the glory?)


Abraham had a choice. God had called Abraham. God had also promised Abraham (in previous chapters). Isaac was the key to those promises. So Abraham had a choice.

You and I also have a choice.

I listed six practical applications that I found from the text. May God give you the strength and courage to make the right choice in your life. God bless you!

Keep Listening vs. 1

Act Promptly vs. 3

Adjust Attitude vs. 5

Prepare Accordingly vs. 6

Follow Through vs. 9-10

Give Glory vs. 14

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2 thoughts on “A Call and a Choice

  1. Good word this morning Tim. Interesting that this is the story you picked for this week. Yesterday I was given the task of teaching a Bible study I the previous chapter–Genesis 21. My conclusions were this:
    If we OBEY God promptly despite our FEARS we will witness His FAITHFULNESS. This, in turn will build our own faith to meet the challenges ahead.
    In our Judeo Christian teachings, of course we study Isaac more than we do Ishmael. But if you go back and read chapter 21, you will recognize that Abraham went through all six of the steps you listed above when obeying God to send Ishmael and Hagar away including his quick response (the phrase “early the next morning” is in the Ishmael story as well).
    I am encouraged to:
    1. Reflect on situations in my life when God has given an opportunity to build my own faith through obedience.
    2. Act in obedience to God’s promoting quickly (before I have the chance to convince myself…”perhaps that wasn’t God?!”)
    Thanks for your blog post today. Have a good week.

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