ALL OF US!
Genesis 22:1-3 And it came to pass after these things, that God did tempt Abraham, and said unto him, Abraham: and he said, Behold, here I am.
 And he said, Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.
 And Abraham rose up early in the morning, and saddled his ass, and took two of his young men with him, and Isaac his son, and clave the wood for the burnt offering, and rose up, and went unto the place of which God had told him.
A burnt offering is the only offering where the entire sacrifice was laid upon the altar. Nothing was withheld from the fire and it was an offering that was voluntary. It was an offering made, not out of duty but from a heart that desired to do so, a free will that wanted to keep nothing for itself. God had called Abraham to do the unthinkable; to offer freely, his only son, all of him, upon the altar of the Lord. A son that God knew Abraham loved dearly and the Lord acknowledges this in HIS words to him. If God knew that Abraham loved his son, then why would God ask such a thing of him? Did the Lord really expect Abraham to offer his only son up so freely, without question, without reservation? How could a loving God ask such a gift to be given and require such a price to be paid? Did the Lord care what pain it would bring to Abraham to offer up his only son? Our greatest battles are not those we fight with the devil, but those we fight within ourselves and with God HIMSELF.
Can you imagine the anguish, the thoughts that were going through Abrahams mind when he had to make a choice on whether to be obedient to God and HIS will or NOT? You see, this was no ordinary son. Isaacwas given to Abraham in his old age at the word of God. Through the descendants of Isaac, God would send HIS only Son….JESUS… and offer HIM up as an offering for the sin of all mankind. What a beautiful picture of God’s Sovereignty and HIS Mighty Hand at work. God understood what was at stake and HE knew the cost. The Lord’s Sovereign plans were already in motion. Man would say…what if Abraham said NO to God? God KNEW in HIS infinite wisdom that Abraham would come to understand the depth and cost of God’s love in the painful walk up the mountain in order to offer up his most precious possession. I have often thought what would have been my answer to God and I ask you…what would have been your answer to God that day? Would you have made the 3 day journey up the mountain willingly, to the place where you knew you would lose your only child? Abraham trusted God beyond his emotions, above any cost, beyond the present and into the future. Obedience will always be a struggle, if we do not trust the One who is calling us to do what is asked of us. Has the Lord ever asked you to do something out of the ordinary, extreme, and did not line up with human logic and you could not add it up on paper? The ONLY thing the Lord wants from us is obedience and for us to TRUST HIM!
My Christian friend, it was not Isaac that God desired to have freely and wholly…it was Abraham! When we are willing to give to God our most precious possessions, then the Lord knows HE has our heart and has ALL of us! The Lord wants our affections, our allegiance, our trust, and above all HE wants us to love HIM supremely. HE doesn’t want the leftovers; HE wants us to put HIM first before everything else. Paul said, “I die daily” in (1 Corinthians 15:31) in other words…Paul laid himself on the altar as a burnt offering to God every day. Paul was instructing us to crucify ourselves, our ambitions, our flesh, and offer to the Lord our hearts, (ALL OF US) every day that Jesus may be glorified! When we are found there, laid freely, without reservation upon HIS altar, we see God’s love for us as never before. Burnt offerings are rare because they are costly, but they are beautiful and glorify God because of what is revealed in the fire of their giving.
Bro. Lawrence Longworth
Isaiah 61:1 “the opening of the prison to them that are bound;”