There is a common misconception that God purposefully hurts and is this big, powerful, scary guy who lives in heaven. How else could a grieving spouse look up in the sky and curse God when his or her loved one dies? We fail to understand how much God loves us because of the limitations of our brain's understanding.
Perhaps this influence is triggered by such stories as Abraham's challenge when God asked him to kill his precious son Isaac as a sacrifice. You see, Sarah, Abraham's wife was barren. When Abraham was more than a hundred years old and Sarah 99, God spoke to Abraham and told him that He will make Sarah pregnant with a son who would pave the way for Abraham to become father of many nations.
Small wonder that when Isaac was born, he became most precious to Abraham, not only because he was blessed with a son after being childless for over a century, but he was the catalyst for Abraham to become the father of many nations, just as God had said.
However, there was one problem. The older Isaac became, the more obsessed Abraham became of his precious son. He upheld Isaac's place in his heart higher than God's. God saw that this was about to consume Abraham completely which is why He asked Abraham to take Isaac up to Mt Moriah to sacrifice him to God.
Imagine how Abraham agonized over this the night before he was to do it. As a father who loved his son so much, after years of barreness, after he had raised Isaac and prepared him to be the leader of many nations, after God Himself had said the same to Abraham, and now this? Faithfully, he did what God had asked him to do and made the journey up to Mt. Moriah, the same mountain upon which Jesus will have been crucified.
But yet, at the right moment, God stopped Abraham in the nick of time as he raised his hands to kill Isaac. It was a test of Abraham's faith, of his loyalty to God, of his idolatry of Isaac. When God's place in Abraham's heart was replaced by his son, God gave him a good lesson in banishing idolatry and placing God back into his heart's priority.
These bible stories are incredible. Each story uncovers layer after layer which will eventually all lead to loving God. Layer by layer is a lesson that touches us in different ways. Another point in this story is that when God told Abraham to stop, there appeared a lamb out of nowhere that was stuck in the thicket which became the sacrifice in place of Isaac. God put the lamb there so that Abraham could still have a sacrifice to offer God. The lamb symbolizes Jesus, who was to come, already written in the plan of God to be sacrificed in the old testament as well as the new testament. Praise be to God! How awesome and wondrous is He?
Not only would Jesus save Isaac from being slaughtered by his own father but all of us sinners as well. The Holy Bible, in all its glory, being the most read book of all time, lives and breathes if we allow it to live and breathe in our hearts. It's like the gift that keeps on giving, as we learn and peel off its layers, that are never ending in its purpose of leading us all back to God.
Until my next rant.... LOVE ONE ANOTHER!