Advent meditation: After the Tower of Babel, it became clear that mankind had become sinful like we were before the flood. It was at this time that God began to implement His long plan to save mankind through the incarnation. However, before Christ could come, God had to prepare the world. To do this, He established a covenant with Abraham. He promised Abraham that through his seed, all the nations would be blessed. However, in order for this plan to work, Abraham would have to be an example of true faith. God gave him a test: he would have to offer up his own son, Isaac! Abraham was faithful and offered his son, but God provided a ram to be sacrificed instead. Isaac is a type of Christ, the only begotten son who is offered up for the salvation of the world. The ram is also a type of Christ, the sacrifice who dies in place of us.

Prayer: Holy Patriarch Abraham, give us the faith that you had, so that we will offer everything we have to God and obey whatever God asks of us.

Scripture: God tested Abraham, and said to him, “Abraham!” And he said, “Here am I.” He said, “Take your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering upon one of the mountains of which I shall tell you.” So Abraham rose early in the morning, saddled his ass, and took two of his young men with him, and his son Isaac; and he cut the wood for the burnt offering, and arose and went to the place of which God had told him. When they came to the place of which God had told him, Abraham built an altar there, and laid the wood in order, and bound Isaac his son, and laid him on the altar, upon the wood. Then Abraham put forth his hand, and took the knife to slay his son. But the angel of the Lord called to him from heaven, and said, “Abraham, Abraham!” And he said, “Here am I.” He said, “Do not lay your hand on the lad or do anything to him; for now I know that you fear God, seeing you have not withheld your son, your only son, from me.” And Abraham lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, behind him was a ram, caught in a thicket by his horns; and Abraham went and took the ram, and offered it up as a burnt offering instead of his son. And the angel of the Lord called to Abraham a second time from heaven, and said, “By myself I have sworn, says the Lord, because you have done this, and have not withheld your son, your only son, I will indeed bless you, and I will multiply your seed as the stars of heaven and as the sand which is on the seashore. And your seed shall possess the gate of their enemies, and by your seed shall all the nations of the earth bless themselves, because you have obeyed my voice.” (Genesis 22:1-3, 9-13, 15-18)

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