Introduction: In our studies leading up to this one we have
often considered Abram’s failures of faith. The New
Testament commends Abram’s faith in questionable
circumstances, and we think that is good news for us. This
week all that changes. Abraham demonstrates a faith in God
that is astonishing. Let’s dive into our study of the Bible
and learn more.
I. The Test
A. Read Genesis 22:1-2. Why would God need to test
1. If Abraham’s faith (shown so far) was “counted
to him as righteousness” (Genesis 15:6), why
would such a terrible test be appropriate?
2. This test is wrong in so many ways. It
commands child sacrifice on a mountain. It
contradicts the promise of God’s covenant
being fulfilled through Isaac (Genesis 17:21).
Can you explain this test?
B. Read James 1:2-4. Is this God’s goal, to produce
steadfastness in Abraham?
C. Read Luke 24:27 and John 5:39. What does this
teach about the relationship between the Old
Testament and Jesus? (Jesus says that the Old
Testament is about Him. Not too long ago I started
to examine famous Old Testament stories to see
what they taught about Jesus. The new insights
were fascinating. I think Abraham’s test is partly
about his prior failures of faith, but mostly
about us. It is a test to promote our
understanding of what God the Father and Jesus did
for us at the cross.)
D. Read Genesis 22:3. Why do you think Abraham is in
a rush? Why leave early? (I suspect he did not
tell Sarah what he was doing.)
1. Would you tell your wife? If you were over 100
years of age, would you consult with others?
(I would fear I was losing my mind! I would
want to assemble a committee to consult. The
reason Abraham did not is that he heard the
voice of God and he was certain what God had
E. Read Genesis 22:4-6. Why leave the helpers and the
transportation behind? (Abraham probably thought
they would try to restrain him.)
1. When Abraham says to the helpers (to make them
stay) we will “come again to you,” is he
lying? (Read Hebrews 11:17-19. Abraham is not
lying, he believes God will raise Isaac to
life if necessary.)
2. Think about this for your life. Abraham has
conflicting commands/promises from God. The
only way to reconcile them is through a
miracle. That is how Abraham resolved it. Is
this a lesson to us?
F. Read Genesis 22:7-8. Why not tell Isaac exactly
what God has commanded? (It says something that
Abraham does not disclose this to anyone.)
1. Is this non-disclosure the approach you would
have taken? (I would be hoping that someone
who restrain me. “God, I tried to do it, but
[fill in name] stopped me.”)
2. Think back to my suggestion that the Old
Testament is about Jesus, and apply it to what
Abraham says in Genesis 22:8.
G. Read Genesis 22:9-10. Why bind Isaac?
H. Read Genesis 22:11-12. When the angel says “Now I
know that you fear God,” what is your
understanding of the word “fear?” (I think
“committed” is the right understanding. Abraham is
committed to God.)
1. Doesn’t God know the future? How can the angel
say “now I know” on behalf of God? (Abraham
has free choice right up to the moment of
plunging his knife down. Previously, Abram was
unreliable when it came to trusting God.)
I. Read Genesis 22:13-17. God provides a substitute,
just as Abraham predicted (Genesis 22:8). What is
the lesson that Abraham takes from this
extraordinary experience? (God will provide.)
1. Is this part of the promises of God that you
incorporate into your life?
2. Is this what we see at the cross?
A. Read Genesis 23:1. This is thirty-seven years
after the birth of Isaac. What do you think her
thoughts were about the story we just discussed
(sacrificing Isaac)? (She is the only woman,
according to several commentaries, whose age at
death is recorded in the Old Testament. That
suggests to me that God is honoring her and her
reaction to our story is honorable.)
B. Read Genesis 23:2. Kiriath-arba, the place Sarah
died, has an important fact hidden in its name.
Read Joshua 15:13. What do we learn about the kind
of people who lived in Kiriah-arba? (These are the
Anakites – the giants in the land.)
1. What does that say about the faith of Abraham
and Sarah? (They were not afraid of giants –
unlike their descendants. See Numbers 13:33.)
III. Isaac’s Wife
A. Read Genesis 24:7 and Genesis 24:10-12. What
approach do Abraham and Eliezer take to finding a
bride for Isaac? (Prayer and gifts!)
B. Read Genesis 24:14. What do you think about this
1. What do you think about Eliezer controlling
who will be eligible? Why not pray that
whoever offers to water the camels is the
future wife? (Read Genesis 24:16. Eliezer
wanted to choose a “very attractive” woman.)
2. What do you think about Eliezer constructing
the test for the future wife?
3. In your opinion, are “very attractive” women
the best wives? Or, are generalizations based
on appearance inappropriate? (This is a well-
considered test. Often, extremely good-looking
women (and men) are self-centered. By testing
whether the future wife was willing to be
“camel centered” – meaning concerned about the
welfare of even the animals – Eliezer was
testing both the face and the heart of the
C. Read Genesis 24:15-19. Does God answer your
prayers so directly?
D. Read Genesis 24:20. What else do we learn about
Rebekah, the future wife? (She is a hard worker.
She worked “quickly” and she “ran” to get the
water for ten camels (Genesis 24:10).)
1. How important is marrying a hard-working
spouse? (This is a serious issue. One spouse
complains that he or she is doing all the
work. If both spouses are hard workers, that
issue never arises.)
E. Genesis 24:22. Later on the Bible (Genesis 24:47)
tells us that the ring is a nose ring. The gold is
far in excess of a reasonable payment for this
work. What is Eliezer doing?
1. Is there a lesson in this for young men today
who are looking for a wife?
F. Read Genesis 24:29-31. What impact does this
jewelry have on the mission?
G. In Genesis 24:33-48 Eliezer recounts the entire
mission. Read Genesis 24:49-53. Is the mission a
success for all concerned? What about Rebekah?
1. Read Genesis 24:5. Whose agreement to the
marriage did Abraham and Eliezer seek? (They
wanted the future wife to agree to the
H. Read Genesis 24:58-61. Rebekah ultimately is asked
and agrees to the marriage. Why do you think she
1. What lessons should we draw from this story
for marriage today? (Prayer is important.
Abraham followed God’s word in marrying
someone from his family. Looking for God’s
direction is important. Finding someone who is
attractive, hard-working, and unselfish is
important. Giving gifts is important.)
I. Read Genesis 24:67. Is this a “happy ever after”
J. Friend, why do you think this story turns out so
well? I say it is because of a commitment to God.
Abraham was committed. His family is committed.
This commitment ends up in blessings. Will you
determine, by the power of the Holy Spirit, to be
committed to God?
IV. Next week: Jacob the Supplanter.
Copr. 2022, Bruce N. Cameron, J.D. Scripture quotations are
from the ESV Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard
Version ), copyright 2001 by Crossway, a publishing
ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All
rights reserved. Suggested answers are found within
parentheses. If you normally receive this lesson by e-mail,
but it is lost one week, you can find it by clicking on this
link: http://www.GoBible.org. Pray for the guidance of the
Holy Spirit as you study.