Do you think Isaac wondered at the workings (or non-workings) of God? He may have cried out to God asking why his brother, Ishmael, should prosper so abundantly while he continued childless. Ishmael was not the son of promise. No doubt, Isaac experienced great disappointment. Why the delay? Why has God seemingly made delays in your own life with your own dreams?
One well-respected commentator says that a Christian has no right to leave property and possessions to an unsaved child. Does that idea produce tension in your mind ang heart? Consider a couple of questions. How serious we are in the belief that God owns all we have? Do we actually believe that God is the giver of all we have? Finally, how much do we want that with which we have been entrusted to be under God’s direction, even when we leave it to others?
Abraham taught his servant to bathe every action in prayer. There is no doubt that fervent supplication for divine leadership marked each step of his journey. He probably began each day with prayer and ended each day with prayer. As he prayed, however, he kept traveling. He did not use prayer as an excuse for idleness. He prayed and worked at the same time. Prayer does not make work unnecessary, but prayer is essential if one’s work is to be effective. What was this servant’s work? He searched for the right woman who would be a wife to Abraham’s son, Isaac. Which girl would be Isaac’s girl, and why? The answer awaits.
The blessing of God calls for being in “the place of ‘His’ choosing.” Have you ever considered that idea in your life? Does anyone consider that idea when they accept a new job, or when they move to a new city, or when they make a huge purchase, or when it comes to who they marry, or when they decide which school to attend? I’m not saying it’s always easy to know, but isn’t that the best place to be? Isn’t that the place of greatest blessing and usefulness? Then for crying out loud, get there and stay there.
In the ancient world, parents chose who their children would marry. Do you think going back to such a custom would be advisable today? Since parents no longer make such decisions, do parents bear any responsibility in the choices made by their children regarding a spouse? If so, what are they? Further, does the Bible offer any guidance for single adults who may be praying for and searching for a mate? Believe it or not, Abraham provides valuable direction not only for parents and single adults but also for those who want to be prepared to address such serious issues as they arise.
In John 8 a lengthy conversation took place between Jesus and the Temple officials, a discussion that addressed the significance of Abraham in the life of Judaism. At its conclusion the fissure had grown so wide that the Temple officials picked up stones to throw at Jesus with the intention to kill Him then and there. Why this huge chasm? Did the difference truly matter then and does it truly matter now? The theological scholars debating with Jesus thought they had it all figured out, especially when it came to Abraham, but did they? Do you?