Living by faith – Practical Guide to Holiness #3

A lot of people talk about having faith – but does it make any difference to their lives? In this session we look at what the Bible says about faith. It’s not enough simply to say that we have faith – it has to make a difference as well. But what kind of difference? And how?

Find out more about this course by watching the Introduction.

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Sharing the faith of Abraham – Romans 4:1-25 Sermon

Over the last few weeks we’ve come across the two different ways – “faith” vs “works”, as Paul puts it. But what does it mean to live by faith? In this passage, Paul turns to the example of Abraham to see how he lived by faith, and how he is the example for us to follow. What does that mean?

** APOLOGIES FOR THE FOCUS ISSUE: As you will see, I am out of focus all the way through. I’m very sorry about this – totally my fault – I will try to get it right next week! **

Sermons are also available on the podcast.

Church with UTB: This is part of Church with UTB. Please do have a look at that page for more information.

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We can’t derail God’s promises – Genesis 12:10-20 Sermon

As we saw in the last episode, Abraham is rightly seen as a pillar of faith and an example for us. And yet, even Abraham had moments of weakness, such as this passage today. Yet somehow, his weakness didn’t derail God’s promises…

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Why did God command Abraham to sacrifice Isaac?

In Genesis 22, God commands Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac. Although in the end Abraham did not have to sacrifice Isaac, it still raises questions: why did God make the command in the first place? The answer to this question appears if we stand back to look at the bigger picture.

Key points

  • Child sacrifice was a serious offence to God – it was forbidden under penalty of death (Leviticus 20:2)
  • Jesus loved children – for example Mark 10:13-16
  • So why did God command it?
  • v1 says that God “tested” Abraham
    • Testing is an exercise in trust. v5 and v8 suggest that Abraham thought he was going to come back with Isaac and that God would provide a sacrifice.
    • In v12 the angel says “Now I know you fear the Lord” – there’s often a difference between knowing something intellectually, and knowing it so that it makes a difference.
    • The quote is taken from C.S. Lewis’ book A Grief Observed
  • In v13-14 we see that God himself does provide. What’s the big picture?
    • v2 says that Abraham was going to the region of “Moriah” – only found in one other place in the Bible (2 Chron 3:1) – where the temple was built. God is giving is a picture.
    • Who did provide their only loved son as a sacrifice? – God!
    • Genesis 22 is a lesson for us, that God’s blessings come through sacrifice – but that God himself provides the sacrifice.
  • Why was it right for God to sacrifice Jesus? – John 10:17-18. Jesus laid down his life – it wasn’t like human beings sacrificing an innocent child!

Explore further

The video that provoked this question was about understanding violence in the Old Testament.

Your questions answered

This is part of the Your questions answered feature. See that page for more videos in the series.

If you have a question about Christianity or the Bible, please send them in or comment below.

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