Have you noticed how hard life is sometimes? There’s nothing like a pandemic to really throw a wrench in our lives. But the truth is, God allows us to face difficult seasons in life to “test” us; to see if we trust Him to provide for us or not. In fact, one of the names for God that is used in the Bible is Jehovah-Jireh, which means “the Lord will provide.” I love that name for God, not just because it sounds really cool, but because of what it means… not that He might, or could, or may provide; but that He WILL provide! Do you trust Him to provide for you? You may be in the middle of a faith test right now. If not, just wait.
One of the most confounding and shocking stories in the Bible is when God tested Abraham by asking him to offer his young son Issac as a sacrifice (Genesis 22). The point of this story is to show how Abraham trusts fully that God will provide! (Genesis 22:8,12).
What kind of faith tests do we face in life? God tests us in at least two ways:
1) God tests us by allowing us to face trials… All of us are being tested these days with this pandemic; but maybe you are being tested with an illness, a job loss/difficulty, financial strain, marital/family strife, or something else. Will you trust God to provide for you… to help you to get through this trial, or will you give up, turn back or turn your back on Him, maybe even blame Him? Some do. Abraham believed God would provide, so he “went on” up that mountain, trusting Jehovah-Jireh every step of the way!
2) God tests us by allowing us to face temptations… God doesn’t tempt us, but He allows us to be tempted in life daily… Tempted to retaliate against someone who has hurt you; tempted to lash out in rage; tempted to use language that compromises your testimony; tempted to watch something that causes lust and corrupts your character. Temptation is a faith test. 13 … But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it. 1 Corinthians 10:13. Will you take the way out God provides or hang out in the temptation and risk failure?
God’s tests are always straight forward; they are pass/fail. Abraham passed a really difficult test… far more difficult than any we will face.
God provides when I faithfully and fearfully believe He will!
13 Abraham looked up and there in a thicket he saw a ram caught by its horns. He went over and took the ram and sacrificed it as a burnt offering instead of his son. 14 So Abraham called that place The Lord Will Provide. And to this day it is said, “On the mountain of the Lord it will be provided.” Genesis 22:13-14
God provided the ram as a substitute sacrifice for Abraham’s only son, Issac. God faithfully provided to Abraham in response to Abraham’s fear of Him and faith in Him. Why? Because Abraham obeyed him…18 and through your offspring all nations on earth will be blessed, because you have obeyed me. Genesis 22:18. God blesses those who obey Him. (Deuteronomy 11:26-28)
How does God’s (Jehovah-Jireh’s) provision impact us?
God’s provision for our daily needs helps us manage worry and anxiety.
25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? Matthew 6:25-27
God’s provision for our spiritual needs rescues us from sin.
25 God presented Christ as a sacrifice of atonement, through the shedding of his blood—to be received by faith. Romans 3:25
Jesus came to Earth to save us from our sin. God provided a ram as a substitute sacrifice for Abraham so that he did not have to sacrifice his only son. But God did not spare his only Son when he went to the cross to die for us… to pay sin’s penalty of death for you and me. (John 3:16).
When we say Jehovah-Jireh, the Lord will provide, we can be certain it is true. We can see it in the birds of the air, for whom God graciously provides. And we can see it at the cross – in Jesus Christ, God’s greatest provision. Do you believe? Will you trust God to provide? For much more, listen to The Names of God - Part 3 - Jehovah-Jireh.