46 And Mary said, “My soul magnifies the Lord, 47 and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, 48 for He has looked on the humble estate of His servant.For behold, from now on all generations will call me blessed; 49 for He who is mighty has done great things for me,and holy is His name. 50 And his mercy is for those who fear Himfrom generation to generation.
6 Blessed be the Lord! For He has heard the voice of my pleas for mercy. 7 The Lord is my strength and my shield; in Him my heart trusts, and I am helped; my heart exults,and with my song I give thanks to Him. Psalm 28:5-7
8 Good and upright is the Lord; therefore He instructs sinners in the way. 9 He leads the humble in what is right, and teaches the humble His way. 10 All the paths of the Lord are steadfast love and faithfulness,for those who keep His covenant and His testimonies. Psalm 25:8-10
“…brothers and sisters, pray for us that the message of the Lord may spread rapidly and be honored, just as it was with you.2 And pray that we may be delivered from wicked and evil people, for not everyone has faith.3 But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen you and protect you from the evil one.” 2 Thessalonians 3:1b-3
18 Let no one deceive himself. If anyone among you thinks that he is wise in this age, let him become a fool that he may become wise.19 For the wisdom of this world is folly with God. For it is written, “He catches the wise in their craftiness,”20 and again, “The Lord knows the thoughts of the wise, that they are futile.”
17 By faith Abraham, when God tested him, offered Isaac as a sacrifice. He who had embraced the promises was about to sacrifice his one and only son,18 even though God had said to him, “It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned.”19 Abraham reasoned that God could even raise the dead, and so in a manner of speaking he did receive Isaac back from death. Hebrews 11:17-19
Abraham’s faith is our example once again in regards to Isaac. How do we respond when God asks for more than we think we can give. We respond by faith. Just think, Isaac was the reward of Abraham’s faith and now God has asked for Isaac.
It is a blessed life lesson for us because this thing called life always requires faith. How do we survive the hard times, the seasons that just rip our hearts to pieces. We walk by faith and not sight (2 Corinthians 5:7).
Where does that faith come from? The quick principle is you must spend faith to get faith. Abraham received the promise of a great nation, that in fact, all nations would be blessed through his seed. Now God has asked for his son, Isaac. It has been said that Ishamel was Abraham’s son of passion and Isaac was the son of God’s promise. God has asked Abraham to sacrifice the son of promise. If Isaac dies, it seems the fulfillment of God’s promise goes with him. Does Abraham have faith in his account (heart) to trust God even when he doesn’t understand. The Lord puts Abraham to the test.
22 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, 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.”
3 Early the next morning Abraham got up and loaded 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.”
6 Abraham took the wood for the burnt offering and placed it on his son Isaac, and he himself carried the fire and the knife. As the two of them went on together,7 Isaac 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?”
8 Abraham answered, “God himself will provide the lamb for the burnt offering, my son.” And the two of them went on together.
9 When 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.10 Then he reached out his hand and took the knife to slay his son.11 But 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.”
13 Abraham looked up and there in a thicket he saw a ram caught by its horns. He went over and took the ram and sacrificed it as a burnt offering instead of his son.14 So 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.”
15 The angel of the Lord called to Abraham from heaven a second time16 and said, “I swear by myself, declares the Lord, that because you have done this and have not withheld your son, your only son,17 I will surely bless you and make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as the sand on the seashore. Your descendants will take possession of the cities of their enemies,18 and through your offspring all nations on earth will be blessed, because you have obeyed me.”
By faith, by faith, by faith. Selah. God just made a major deposit into the bank of Abraham’s faith. All praise to the God who is, was, and forever shall be. Without faith it is impossible to please Him (Hebrews 11:6).
13 All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance, admitting that they were foreigners and strangers on earth.14 People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own.15 If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return.16 Instead, they were longing for a better country—a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them. Hebrews 11:13-16
I just love these verses! What a summary of faith! All the people: Abel, Enoch, Noah, Abraham, and Sarah lived by faith…and when they died they were still living by faith.
Remember that slogan during the Presidential campaign, “I’m with her.” Well, let me tell you, I’m with these folks. My husband is an Oakland Raiders fan and I have come to know that Oakland Raider fans stick and stay no matter what (NMW). Even in the real lean days, he would be quick to tell you, “I am Oakland born, Oakland bred, and when I die I will be Oakland dead.” My heart is fixed and my mind made up, I’m going to live by faith!
So let me tell you I am faith born, faith bred, and when it comes time for me to die, I going to be living by faith, faith dead. As the song says, you can’t make me doubt Him, I know too much about Him! Just like the five above did not receive every promise in the here and now BUT held on to the promise believing that God was not a man that He should lie, that He is a promise-keeping God, that He watches over His Word to see to it that it performs what He sends it out to do…the five had no doubt that the Lord would make good on His Word. The five understood that every promise that they did not see fulfilled here would be so on the other side, in a better country – a heavenly one.
They understood that they were just sojourners, that they had a better day in a better land coming. The five saw the promises from a distance and how privileged we are to do the same. I am so blessed and thankful that Jesus said, “Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me.2 In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you?3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also (John 14:1-3).“
“I WILL COME AGAIN AND WILL TAKE YOU TO MYSELF, THAT WHERE I AM YOU MAY BE ALSO.” Shout now – Hallelujah! Don’t get no better that this and certainly worth longing for…
Even now our heart should be rejoicing in God alone “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God,9 not a result of works, so that no one may boast.” It is grace alone through faith that will take us home…can’t wait for that day when I shall see Jesus face to face! Thank you, Father for the privilege!
1 O God, listen to my cry!Hear my prayer! 2 From the ends of the earth, I cry to You for helpwhen my heart is overwhelmed. Lead me to the towering rock of safety, 3 for You are my safe refuge, a fortress where my enemies cannot reach me. 4 Let me live forever in Your sanctuary, safe beneath the shelter of Your wings! Psalm 61:1-4
5 Let all that I am wait quietly before God,for my hope is in Him. 6 He alone is my rock and my salvation,my fortress where I will not be shaken. 7 My victory and honor come from God alone.He is my refuge, a rock where no enemy can reach me. 8 O my people, trust in him at all times.Pour out your heart to Himfor God is our refuge. Psalm 62:5-8