Today we see how much Abraham’s faith has grown. He obeys the Lord regarding Hagar and Ishmael by sending them away per his wife Sarah’s request. However, God reassures Abraham that he will care for Ishmael – “Yet I will also make a nation of the son of the bondwoman, because he is your seed.” And God, once again, sees Hagar’s distress when Ishmael is near death in the wilderness. The Lord comforts her and her son Ishmael as He had promised. “So God was with the lad; and he grew and dwelt in the wilderness, and became an archer. He dwelt in the Wilderness of Paran; and his mother took a wife for him from the land of Egypt.”
Then the Lord tests Abraham by instructing him to “Take now your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you.” Abraham’s faith is now so strong that he is willing to sacrifice Isaac, believing that God would even raise him from the dead to fulfill the promises made to him (Hebrews 11:17-19). But God doesn’t require Abraham to sacrifice his son. No, that’s not the Lord’s plan. The Lord provides a sacrificial ram in place of Isaac, just as the Lord is providing a sacrifice in our place. God is going to be the One that has to sacrifice His Son Jesus Christ as the final sacrificial Lamb for us.
After Abraham demonstrates his faith in the Lord, the Lord reveals to him that his brother has a granddaughter named Rebekah. So Abraham’s servant, trusting God, meets Rebekah through a divine appointment made by the Lord and brings her from her father’s house to Isaac to be his wife.
Isaac is comforted by Rebekah as he was mourning the death of his mother Sarah. Abraham buried Sarah in the cave of the field of Machpelah, before Mamre (that is, Hebron) in the land of Canaan. This will be the only piece of property that Abraham will own during his lifetime. Abraham will die having to trust that the Lord will fulfill His promises through his descendants.
So the story continues – Will Isaac make the same mistakes his father made early in his faith journey? Keep reading to find out. (Genesis 21:8-23:20, Genesis 11:32, Genesis 24:1-67)