Our Need for Resurrection

Open Your Bible

Genesis 22:1-19, Hebrews 11:17-19, Daniel 12:2-3

The binding of Isaac breaks my heart every time I read it. I subconsciously swap myself for Abraham and replace Isaac with my beloved firstborn son, and suddenly the story hurts in a real and visceral way. (Did you do this when you read the passage?) Each physical hurdle becomes agonizing—the saddling of the donkey, the splitting of the wood, the long walk uphill, and finally, the binding up of a beloved boy. The whole agonizing ordeal truly begs the question: How did Abraham do it? How did he make it through all the steps up to the very point of raising a knife over his promised and beloved son?

Chillingly, child sacrifice has a long, established history in many cultures, including that of Mesopotamia. Abraham was from Ur (Genesis 11:31), and so he would have been familiar with the sacrifice of a child to prove devotion to a god. Similarly, the Canaanites worshipped Molech, the false god most famous for demanding child sacrifice. The idea behind the sacrifice was this: If you are willing to sacrifice the person most precious to you—and for parents, nothing could be more precious to us than our children—then you could prove your devotion to your god. Abraham had certainly encountered this kind of demand before with regard to other cultural gods.

Second, Abraham trusted God. He trusted that “I AM” was not just another Baal or Molech. Abraham believed that God was the one true God, and he cherished the profound hope that “I AM” was different. Abraham had such trust that he reasoned God would provide for a miraculous resurrection to save Isaac, if that’s what it took (Hebrews 11:19). He even told Isaac, “God himself will provide the lamb for the burnt offering, my son” (Genesis 22:8).

For both these reasons, we find Abraham shuddering with a knife raised over that which is most precious to Him. And we find ourselves standing right beside him, surveying the hopelessness of our station. We are dead in our trespasses, we live under a curse, and we have no hope of satisfying the chasm of debt that we owe. Indeed, the consequence of our sin is death (Romans 6:23).

We need a God who can raise the dead (Matthew 10:8). We need a God who has the power to undo the curse (Romans 8:2). And our God has promised and proven that He can and will do both. Our God does not demand child sacrifice—He abhors it! After all, He knits together our children and treasures them because they are His very own. We don’t need a false god with a lust for flesh and a desire for pain. Rather, we worship the one true God, who preserves, protects, loves, and cherishes us and our children. Hallelujah!

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105 thoughts on "Our Need for Resurrection"

  1. Jeralyn Egger says:

    It is personal… “I worship the one true God, who preserves, protects, loves, and cherishes me and my children.”

  2. Nicky Fetting says:

    Sacrifing the promises of God… giving up, even killing the hopes, the core aspects of who I am… all to please God, to show my devotion and love.
    Yet God provides the lamb.
    Instead of sacrifice He wants my love, He wants me to know Him (Hosea 6:6) – possible because of Jesus!

  3. Ana Lisa Johnson says:

    I’m so amazed by Abraham’s faith. Lord, please give me faith like this, to trust you with my future, especially as my husband and I are beginning a season of trying to get pregnant. A season I have waited for 3 years to step into. And now, when we are finally here, I find myself wrestling with fear that God won’t provide a child, after all this time of waiting, hoping, and trusting Him with the timing. God, I know you have good plans. Please help me let go of mine and be thankful for yours. Your ways are better than my ways.

  4. Beth says:

    May I always hear God and reply, “Here I am.” Just as Abraham did. What a awesome example of faith!

  5. reagan says:

    in verse 12, the angel of the Lord knows Abraham fears God because Abraham did not withhold his only and dear son from God. likewise, we can know that God must really love us because He did not withhold His only Son from us. oh, the painful death Jesus endured on that cross is unthinkable. and to think of the pain God went through seeing His Son be beaten to death. I’m so thankful for the cross and that He did not hold back.

    1. Amy Spradling says:

      Yes, the fact that God actually went through with the sacrifice of his only son to show his love and commitment to us, a sinful people, is an overwhelming reality that still amazes me every time I think about it. And to think that Jesus was willing to go through the pain and agony of the cross and separation from God the Father, while dying for our sins is so humbling. I pray that the awesomeness of what God did for me will never cease to amaze and overwhelm me all of days of my life.

  6. Alyssa Westlake says:

    God redeemed Abraham’s religious history. And, foreshadowed Jesus—God did provide a lamb! Hallelujah.

  7. Brenna Page says:

    It’s so easy to lose ourselves in the love of our family, especially our spouse and children. We can very easily let that love become a form of idolatry and suddenly we’ve removed God from the center of our heart. I have to remind myself often that my husband is not mine, my daughter is not mine; they belong to God just as I do. I have to help them in their journey here and do the best I can for them, all the while remembering they are not mine. God has His own plans laid out for them. The very best I can do is pray for them always and be there to redirect their eyes and hearts onto the Lord.

    1. Lauren Williams says:

      I like your take on the focus for this passage. I shutter at the initial thought of sacrificing a child but when you think of it in terms of idolatry and that God wants us to place no one above him then it easier to understand.

  8. Caitlin Clarke says:

    The obedience and trust that Abraham shows here amazes me every time I read this passage. When God asked him to do something most of us couldn’t even think of doing, Abraham doesn’t even doubt or question God, he just obeys. I pray that I can have that kind of obedience to the Lord that when he calls me to do something, I don’t doubt or question or look for another way, I step out in faith and do.