And it came to pass after these things, that God did tempt Abraham, and said to him, Abraham: and he said, Behold, here I am.…
The crowning test of Abraham's life, in which all preceding trials culminated. The greatness of the test appears in the exceptional character of the demand. It appeared as a direct contradiction of God's promise. Abraham's obedience was —
1. Prompt. The command came in the night. Early next morning, Abraham "rose up... and took... Isaac," &c.
2. Persistent. He had the sustaining force which enabled him to maintain his purpose unwaveringly during the period of suspense between the command and the full obedience to it.
3. Perfect. He accepted the command as meaning the unreserved and unconditional offering up of Isaac, with the faith that God would say "enough" when the obedience came up to the measure of the demand. When that would be, it was for God, not Abraham, to decide. It was for him to obey; and he did obey. When he lifted up the knife, the sacrifice was complete. Isaac bad already been sacrificed upon the altar of a father's heart. All the agony of giving up had been endured. Only the tragedy, and not the real sacrifice was prevented.
Parallel VersesKJV: And it came to pass after these things, that God did tempt Abraham, and said unto him, Abraham: and he said, Behold, here I am.