Day 26: Abraham, Father of Nations

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For most of his life, Abraham didn’t think that he would ever be a father, though his name means “Father of a Multitude”. He and his wife passed into old age childless. This puzzled Abraham, because God had promised him that he would have descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and the grains of sand on the seashore.

Abraham continued to trust in God and his wife conceived as an old woman. She bore him a son, whom they named Isaac, and another son by another wife named Ishmael. Abraham loved Isaac deeply as he was the only child of his beloved first wife, and a miracle.

Then, God tested Abraham in an incredible, heart-wrenching way. He commanded Abraham to take his son, Isaac, and offer him up as a burnt sacrifice in the manner that Abraham’s people usually sacrificed rams and sheep.

Though it broke his heart, Abraham obeyed God, without knowing the reason why and brought Isaac to be sacrificed. As Abraham lifted the knife to kill his son, an angel of the Lord stopped him, and revealed that Abraham had passed a crucial test. Because Abraham was willing to give the life of his beloved son, in the way that God would give His beloved Son, Abraham was made a father of nations. From his descendants come both the Jewish and the Arabic races.

Question: What can we do to model our lives after Abraham’s good example?

See also:

http://christianity.about.com/od/oldtestamentpeople/p/abraham.htm

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