“You can tell a lot about someone’s priorities by looking at their bank account and calendar.” Is this true? To some extent, I think it is. How people spend their time, and their money reveals a great deal about them.
At the end of Abraham’s life, we see what he prioritized. You might recall that after Sarah had died, Abraham, while resolutely marching through the second century of his life, married again. Not only did Abraham remarry but he also had more children, six to be exact. From these six children, Abraham also became the grandfather of several more.
What’s the significance of this? Here at the end of the patriarch’s life, there is some potential for confusion about the identity of the son of Abraham and the promise of God. Remember, in addition to these sons of Keturah, there is Isaac from Sarah, and then Ishmael, the son of Hagar.
Will the true son of Abraham please stand up?
The writer of Genesis clears any potential fog from our sight when he writes, “Abraham gave all he had to Isaac” (Gen. 25:5).
Imagine a poker player sitting at the table. He has a great hand. In his estimation it is unbeatable. It is a sure win. What does he do? He pushes all of his chips to the middle. He is all in for this hand. He is willing to put it all on the line because he believes that what he is holding in his hand is certainly the winning hand.
What we see in Genesis 25 is Abraham going all in on Isaac. He gives him everything he had. There is to be no fog hovering over the life of Abraham: he was betting on Isaac. But what does this mean? It means that he was all in on God’s promise! It was through Isaac that the promise was going to come, “through Isaac shall your offspring be named” (Gen. 21:12). Abraham lived and died with faith that God would keep his promise.
This should be a reminder to us as Christians. We are to live as people who are all in on God’s promises. There does not seem to be any permissible half-hearted support of God’s program. We can’t be half in and half out; we are either all in or all out. Abraham is a helpful reminder.
Every moment of every day is an opportunity to declare our abiding faith in God and his promises. Each day is filled with any number of tough choices that we have to make that demonstrate if we are believing God or not. Sin is, at its core, exchanging the truth of God for a lie (Rom. 1:25). This is another way of saying disbelieving God’s promises and believing a lie. Are you all in on God’s promises?
As I think about my own heart in this matter, I find great encouragement that while often I’m slow to believe and quick to forget God’s promises, Jesus wasn’t. My faithful Savior trusted and treasured the promises of God. Amid the tightening vice in his life of submission, Jesus rang the bell of God’s promises. He prays in John 17 with trust that God would do all that he pledged to do. Jesus prays that he has completed the assignment, and now he asks God to do what he said and glorify him on the cross, resurrection, and ascension. Jesus believed God’s promises right up to the very end.
In other words, the fact that Jesus was all in on God’s promises convicts and compels me to do the same. Are you all in on God’s agenda?