Monday, February 8, 2010

“Him, Who” Part 5

Our next passage to look at comes from Genesis 22:14, just after the moment at the brink of the near-sacrifice of Isaac, when God supplies the ram in the thicket to be sacrificed instead. "So Abraham called the name of that place, 'The LORD will provide'; as it is said to this day, 'On the mount of the LORD it shall be provided." This is a bit of a unique case, compared to the rest that we have looked at, because this name used is the name of a place. Actually, to be more precise, it is the name of a memorial. The name, "The LORD will provide," serves the purpose of reminding the traveler (not just Abraham) that God will provide, as He has before. More specifically than that, God had provided the sacrifice to save the life of Isaac and preserve the line of Abraham, keeping His promise to make a nation of Abraham. Abraham had set up a place, not a holy or supernatural place, but a place that would remind him every time he passed by that God will continue to provide salvation for His people. I believe it is a very spiritually healthy thing to attach meaning and memory to things, particularly when they strengthen faith. I am not at all suggesting that we should set up idols to worship. What I am saying is that when God works in our life, we ought to discipline ourselves to remember, not just for reminiscing purposes, but to remind us in the hard times, when we need to be reminded most, that God is faithful. One such way is by keeping spiritual souvenirs. One such spiritual souvenir I have is the Bible I was given at my ordination. It is a very important Bible to me, not just because it has a very expensive calf-skin cover (that I would never be able to afford), nor because it is the version I prefer to read. It is important because it was given to me and is signed by the ones who stood and bore witness that God had called me to His service. My pastor at the time, the ordained men of the church, my family (both biological and spiritual), and friends' names appear in the first few pages, a testimony in times of doubt that God has a plan for me. I pray that you find ways on your own to constantly remind yourself that God is for you and desires your good.

-Mark Whitaker, Minister of Music and Worship and Interim Minister of Students

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