Abraham Pointed Isaac in the Right Direction (Genesis 18:16-19)
1. An appropriate statement for Father's Day is on the front of today's bulletin: "Fathers who follow God point their children in the right direction." 2. In our lesson we are pointing out how Abraham followed God, and in doing so he pointed Isaac in the right direction. 3. According to Genesis 18:19, God knew this about Abraham. 4. An event recorded in Genesis 22:1-14 affirms that God's knowledge of Abraham was accurate. 5. The principles we are covering actually relate to all of us. 6. As we follow God we lead others in the right direction. 7. To fully appreciate what happened we first need to point out that . . . Discussion: I. ABRAHAM WAITED A LONG TIME FOR ISAAC TO BE BORN
A. Abraham is introduced in Genesis 11. 1. According to vs.26, his father was Terah; his brothers were Nahor and Haran. 2. We learn from vs.29 that Sarai was his wife [she was barren -- vs.30]. B. Some important information is revealed in Genesis 12:1-4. 1. In vs.2 God said that Abraham would be the father of "a great nation." 2. Vs.4 indicates that Abraham was 75 years old at the time. C. God repeated His promise to Abraham several times (Genesis 13:16; 15:5). D. When Abraham was 99 years old God spoke to him again about having children. 1. In Genesis 17:1-2 God said He would multiply Abraham "exceedingly." 2. God revealed some specific information to Abraham in Genesis 17:19. 3. God knew something very special about Abraham (Genesis 18:19). E. Sarah gave birth to Isaac when Abraham was 100 years old (Genesis 21:1-5). F. With this information before us, let us turn our attention to . . . II. THE SPECIAL EVENT RECORDED IN GENESIS 22:1-14
A. Abraham pointed Isaac in the right direction concerning 3 practical matters. 1. Abraham taught Isaac to fear God (vs.12; Ecclesiastes 12:13-14). 2. Abraham taught Isaac to trust God (Hebrews 11:17-19). 3. Abraham taught Isaac that faith includes obedience (James 2:21-24). B. Abraham also pointed Isaac in the right direction concerning "worship." 1. Abraham taught Isaac that God determines the manner in which He is to be worshipped (John 4:23). a. God told Abraham what to do in vs.2. b. Abraham did not object, and he did not tell God what he was willing to do. c. One item of acceptable worship is worshipping "in truth" (John 4:24). 2. Abraham taught Isaac that God does not accept substitutes in worship. a. Even though he was over 100 years old, Abraham did not pass on his responsibilities to Sarah or his servants. b. Furthermore, Abraham did not try to offer Ishmael instead of Isaac. c. God does not accept substitute forms of worship. 3. Abraham taught Isaac that worshipping God involves paying a price. a. Abraham gave up something when he offered animals to God. b. Offering Isaac involved paying a much higher price. c. David made a statement about the price of worship in 2 Samuel 24:24. 4. Abraham taught Isaac to take worship seriously. a. Worship is not a time for entertainment. b. Another item of acceptable worship is worshipping "in spirit" (John 4:24). 5. Abraham taught Isaac that worship is accompanied by a blessing (vs.15-18). Conclusion:
1. Abraham helps us to appreciate the serious responsibility that God has given to fathers (Ephesians 6:4). 2. Abraham was a great father to Isaac, and we can become his spiritual descendants today (Galatians 3:26-29).