Plan-A, Plan Only

God had a plan to undo the consequences of the Fall, to heal and restore humanity, and that plan began with one man: Abraham.  His line would lead to a point: the Point-of-it-All.  And God would get from Abraham to that Point by what N. T. Wright calls “the single plan-of-God-through-Israel-for-the-world.”  There was never a Plan-B.

But (and this is a huge “but”) when the covenant was established, Abraham and Sarah had no child.  God’s plan and promise of a family line required Sarah, who had been infertile, to conceive. And she did.  I don’t think we can imagine the joy Abraham felt.  He and Sarah had a child.  They named him Isaac, which means laughter.  That tells us something, doesn’t it?  In his latter years, Abraham took great pleasure in watching his son grow up. I wonder how often he found himself chuckling at the antics of his boy.  But sometimes when he looked at him, he could see a line stretching into the future, embracing the promise, blessing the earth.

And then we come to Genesis 22. Plan-A, Plan-Only, “the single plan-of-God-through-Israel-for-the-world,” which depended on only one person, on Isaac, on the boy called Laughter, was put at risk. And it was God himself who was to blame. It looked as if Abraham’s laughter would be silenced forever.

Was God really going to erase the line that led to the point – the Point of it All? God sometimes seems almost reckless. Would he bring the line to an end before it even began? On only one other occasion in the history of redemption were the stakes so high. On that occasion (once again), everything depended on one person – this time, on Jesus, the end of the line, the point of it all.

How daring God is – or seems to be to us. He is fearless! But then he has nothing to fear. He sees the end from the beginning, sees Jesus in Isaac, and sees us in glory (even when see only trouble and pain). He is the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. He is the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. And, because of Jesus, he is our God too.


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