Genesis 22:1 - 24
ESV - 1 After these things God tested Abraham and said to him, "Abraham!" And he said, "Here am I. 2 He said, "Take your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you.
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In my view, God ordered Abraham to sacrifice Isaac not because He Himself did not already know what Abraham would do, but to have Abraham grow and mature in his faith in a way that no other means could so greatly achieve by finding out for himself what he was willing to do, or how far he was willing to go, to obey God. (That is, Abraham's faith was just a theoretical concept until he had to apply it to this most severe concrete situation.) (As noted in Hebrews 11:17-19, Abraham -- even as he prepared to kill Isaac -- had such great faith that he believed that, even if he were to kill Isaac, God would be able to raise Isaac from the dead. And God rewarded him for that faith.)
I think God would "have to" test Abraham in this way to see if Abraham really loved Him and to show us that he did. God did not/does not hide the painfulness of surrender from us. I also believe it was analogous to God sacrificing His Son for us. However not all would agree as I once mentioned this to a precious Jewish elderly couple, Al and Ellie, probably deceased by now, but they disagreed because they did not believe in Jesus. See S. Michael Houdmann's wonderful article about this analogy at GotQuestions.org. Here's the link: https://www.gotquestions.org/Abraham-Isaac.html
God doesn't give up his sovereignty by not choosing to know what humans will do. He was willing to take the risk of sin then to make Adam into a robot. If love is force, it's not love freely given. God didn't create love in Adam, but, gave Adam the capacity to love. Could God know? Of course, but he chose not to because, that would violate the principle of love itself. Look at it this way: You invite your friend to stay in your home, give them a room where they can sleep and put their things. They inform you they will be going overnight to see another friend, and would you mind if they left their things in the room you provided. Would that mean you have a right to search their luggage because, after all, it’s your property and the right is on your side? You wouldn't do that because there is a principle of "I ought not do that." This is what we're looking at: Can I? Yes. Should I? No.
God didn't test Abraham to find out anything; He put Abraham to the test. He gave Abraham a chance to prove himself. God chose Abraham out of all the people on the earth at that time. Why? Why Abraham? Was there something special about him? If there was it isn't written in the scriptures. God told elderly Abraham he would give him a son by his elderly wife Sarai, 25 years before the child was born to them. Why did God tell them so far in advance of making it come to pass? I believe the answer (singular) to these questions has something to do with God's plan to test Abraham by telling him to give the son back to him that he and his wife had waited so long to have. God developed Abraham, systematically. Read the story, beginning in Genesis 12. Ten chapters later in Genesis 22, God tells him to, "Take your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, 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). God told him to pack up all his belongings and leave his hometown, his family, his culture, his relationships, religion, whatever his plans were, leave it all and go to a place that he would show him as he went. "I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing" (Gen 12:2). No one could blame Abraham if his response would have been 'And how do you plan to do all of this?' Vs 4 says, "So Abraham went." Then the development years began. Now he's being given a chance to prove himself to God. But doesn't God know all things? If he does, then he already knows the outcome, why do the test? God had proven himself to Abraham from Genesis 12 onward. God had established the "truth of the genuineness of his character" and his word. What he had said he would do, he had done, up to the point of where they were in the relationship. Abraham had only one offspring, and he's being promised to be the father of a great nation of people. But again, if you read the chapters between the initial offer to Abraham and the request for him to offer up Isaac as a burnt offering, you see that God continued to give him victory in his affairs. It was now Abraham's turn; he could possibly have only one thing that God could use. If he did have it, it would prove "the truth of the genuineness of his character." It's called faith.. Did he believe God? God had told him he would make of Abraham a great nation, and Isaac would be the firstborn. If he wanted to prove that he believed God, that he trusted God to finish what he had started, he would continue to do as he's told to do by God. Yes, of course, God knew he'd comply; That wasn't the point; he gave Abraham a chance to walk across the stage, to receive his diploma, to graduate. That act of faith defines Abraham! It supersedes everything else that he has ever done, good or bad. Dr Charles Stanley, pastor of First Baptist in Atlanta has a pet saying: 'Do what God tells you to do and leave the consequences to him!'
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