Have you ever wondered why Abraham was considered righteous?
- 1 Some time later God tested Abraham. He said to him, "Abraham!" "Here I am," he replied.
- 2 Then God said, "Take your son, your only son, Isaac, whom you love, and go to the region of Moriah. Sacrifice him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains I will tell you about."
- 3 Early the next morning Abraham got up and saddled his donkey. He took with him two of his servants and his son Isaac. When he had cut enough wood for the burnt offering, he set out for the place God had told him about.
- 4 On the third day Abraham looked up and saw the place in the distance.
- 5 He 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 was called by God to sacrifice his only true son, Isaac. Abraham went through the whole ordeal but it seems as though he lied to his servants. He told his servants to stay while they go worship and then they will come back! Now if he was to sacrifice Isaac, he knew only he himself would come back. Did Abraham lie? And he was still considered righteous. Well, he didn't lie.
Abraham knew Isaac would live. Before all of this happened Abraham was promised that his descendants would be as numerous as the grains of sand. When Abraham took Isaac up the mountain he knew that somehow Isaac would be coming back down with him. So when he said "we" will return, he meant it. However, he probably also expected that Isaac would have to be actually sacrificed, in the literal sense. So why would he think both would be coming back? Isaac would be resurrected! To Abraham, Isaac was already dead. He knew that he would have to truly give a sacrifice, not just an offering. Sometimes true worship means just more than your offering (money, feelings, times or any aspect of life). Abraham knew that true worship meant giving all you have. Isaac meant the world to him. It was all Abraham had. True Ishma'el was there but Ishma'el was not born out of faith. He was born of the flesh. He was born out of desire. He was not the promise God had for Abraham. The true son of Abraham was Isaac. The true sacrificed had to come by or through him.
And because he acted out of faith God provided a way out. Such as in our lives. Sometimes we see an easy way out. We see the things born out of the flesh as what can satisfy us and so we take that route. But God calls us to a place. He calls us to His route. If we stay faithful and follow His route and not our own, God will provide all we need. Since Abraham stayed faithful and was willing to sacrifice Isaac, God gave him the lamb caught in the brush. God called Abraham to a place. He didn't tell Abraham to sacrifice there at home. That would not have been a sacrifice. Staying home is our comfort zone and we would tend to remain to comfortable and not put our full focus on what God calls us to do. Therefore we may not even follow through with our sacrifice or worship. Abraham had to follow the directions of God to prove his faithfulness. The mountain that God told Abraham to go to was Mount Moriah, the highest peak in the area. This just happened to be the same mountain Christ was crucified on.
In all ways Abraham trusted in God. This is what made Abraham righteous. His trust. His faith. Hebrews tell us, "By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going." This is why the promises he was given were granted. Faithfulness gets you the promises of God.