CAN you see what Abraham is doing here? He has a knife, and it looks as if he is going to kill his son. Why would he ever do that? First, let’s see how Abraham and Sarah got their son.
Remember, God promised them that they would have a son. But that seemed impossible, because Abraham and Sarah were so old. Abraham, however, believed that God could do what seemed impossible. So what happened?
After God made his promise, a whole year passed. Then, when Abraham was 100 years old and Sarah was 90 years old, they had a baby boy named Isaac. God had kept his promise!
But when Isaac had grown older, Jehovah tested Abraham’s faith. He called: ‘Abraham!’ And Abraham answered: ‘Here I am!’ Then God said: ‘Take your son, your only son, Isaac, and go to a mountain that I will show you. There kill your son and offer him up as a sacrifice.’
How sad those words made Abraham, because Abraham loved his son very much. And remember, God had promised that Abraham’s children would live in the land of Caʹnaan. But how could that happen if Isaac were dead? Abraham did not understand, but still he obeyed God.
When he got to the mountain, Abraham tied up Isaac and put him on the altar that he built. Then he took out the knife to kill his son. But just at that moment God’s angel called: ‘Abraham, Abraham!’ And Abraham answered: ‘Here I am!’
‘Don’t hurt the boy or do anything to him,’ God said. ‘Now I know that you have faith in me, because you have not held back your son, your only one, from me.’
What great faith Abraham had in God! He believed that nothing was impossible for Jehovah, and that Jehovah could even raise Isaac from the dead. But it was not really God’s will for Abraham to kill Isaac. So God caused a sheep to get caught in some nearby bushes, and he told Abraham to sacrifice it instead of his son.