Surrender – Abraham’s Gradual Surrender to God

Surrender – Abraham’s Gradual Surrender to God

All four gospels include repeated references to Jesus’ teaching that people should lose their lives for his sake (cf. Matthew 10:38-39; 16:24-25; Mark 8:34-35; Luke 9:23-27; 14:25-27; 17:33; John 12:25). Jesus did not possess a limited set of teachings that he refined by repeating to various audiences. Instead, knowing “what was in man” (John 2:23-25) and having “all the treasures of knowledge and wisdom” (Colossians 2:3), Jesus offered the teachings his audiences needed to hear. His repeating emphasis on selfless surrender indicates he believed people needed to listen to that message because they struggled with it.

People often talk about resolutions at the beginning of a year. They want to lose weight. They want to learn a skill. They want to unlearn a bad habit or begin some new habit. This lesson coopts that focus, introducing a month-long series challenging us to surrender ourselves to God in the coming year. We will explore what it looks like to submit ourselves to Jesus by considering stories of people surrendering themselves to God in the Bible. We start with Abraham, whose surrender to God plays out over a long period of struggle and culminates in an unthinkable act – his willing sacrifice of his son Isaac.