Do You Want To Hear The Lord Say To You, "Now I Know..."?

(Passing the test of obedience and faith)

Sun am 30 May 2010 – Kobus Swart

Gen. 10; Gen. 11:27-30; Gen. 12:1-3;

2 Peter 1:2-4; (Rom. 10:17); (Gen. 1:2); (2 Tim.4:7); Gen. 22:1-14;

Heb. 11:17-19

This word is not just about a spiritual father; it is also about the family that our Heavenly Father is looking for – a family who has passed the test of faith.

The genealogy from Noah onwards suddenly reaches a dead-end in Sarai: “And Sarai was barren; she had no child”. (Gen. 11:30). That would mean the line ended there. This line of Sarai ends in barrenness which means there is no foreseeable future. Then God makes this promise to Abram who had nothing, but it contains all the power and ingredients to not only break the barrenness but also to produce fruitfulness. “And I will make you a great nation”. (Gen. 12:2). God speaks into barrenness and releases a promise into a hopeless situation. What happens after that depended on Abraham. Abraham, Isaac and Jacob all married women who were barren. True barrenness means that there is no human way or power to invent the future. This is the condition of hopeless humanity around us. That is the line God chose to manifest Himself as the God of family and fruitfulness. It’s as if God is saying “I don’t need what you think you have”. The mixture in the Church today is the mixture between giftedness and that through which God wants to manifest Himself. We try to manufacture success according to the definition of the world.

God’s first call is found in Genesis chapter one. He calls creation into being, out of chaos. God’s second call was to Abraham, to establish an alternative community in the earth. In the story of Abraham and Isaac we find the resurrection life of Christ coming into view. It’s a pointer to God’s plan to bring everything onto a new resurrection plane of life. All of us at some stage or another, reach a place where not even with the greatest of manipulative powers or money in the world, we can change a situation. It has to be God.

God wants us to become partakers of His divine nature. The way He has done it, was to give us His rich promises (2 Pet 1:2-4). God gives a promise and by the promise we upgrade to the place where He is our Provider and our Protection. The way to that place is our response to His Promise. The role that faith plays in this Christian walk is bigger than we ever imagined. Believing is not some passive lazy attitude; it is an aggressive thing that is activated in your spirit, once you’ve heard the promise from above. “So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ”. (Rom. 10:17)

Abraham was always positioned to hear God’s Word. When we look at the call to Abraham, God was actually saying He was going to re-form creation. This points to the transformation of nations. His intention was not for it to be one cultural, biological, natural nation, but as the sand of the sea and the stars of the heaven; a holy nation! We have been predestined before time began to be adopted into sonship. But we have to respond to the call of God.

Abraham was not a perfect man. How many times do you lean on the arm of the flesh, trying to manufacture the answer which God has promised you. How often do we want to produce an Ishmael?

Then came Abraham’s greatest test. God said, “Take now your son, your only son, whom you love, Isaac, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I will tell you.” (Gen. 22:2). First God speaks into this barren situation; He produces a miracle, and then says “kill it”!

How many times do you want to be tested? If somebody does something to interrupt the dealings of God in your life, God will make you repeat the test some other way. The man and woman God is looking for must believe in His promise. Our trust must be in God and not in man. This whole story points to the great provision in Christ. God wants to provide, not from the things that are, but from nothingness. In His powerful faithfulness, God is able to miraculously provide. Why is it only a minority who can walk in this kind of faith?

Abraham’s obedience was total. “By faith, Abraham, at the time of testing, offered Isaac back to God. Acting in faith, he was as ready to return the promised son, his only son, as he had been to receive him” (Heb. 11:17). In Abraham’s heart Isaac was dead. Only then did the words come from Jahweh-Jireh: “Now I know…”(Gen 22:12).

Once Abraham and Sarah received the promise from God, they could never go back and live the pre-promise lifestyle.

God looks beyond one generation, but He does give the full opportunity to one generation to fulfill it. God wants to see a family who has passed the test.

We need to hear these words from the Lord, “now I know”!