What is it about faith that keeps demanding of us greater testings? Just when we come through one trial that proves us faithful, our heart declaring, “Lord, I will trust you for everything,” here comes another test, increased in its intensity. This experience is shared by Christians worldwide.
Consider the ever-increasing demands on Abraham’s faith. God asked him to pack up his family and travel to an unnamed destination, yet by faith, Abraham obeyed and was greatly blessed. “By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to the place which he would receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he was going” (Hebrews 11:8).
At one point, God told Abraham to behold the starry sky, saying, “Look now toward heaven, and count the stars if you are able to number them … So shall your descendants be” (Genesis 15:5). In other words, “Abraham, that is how many children, grandchildren and family you are going to have. They will number as many as the stars.”
Abraham’s response was a lesson for us all: “He believed in the Lord, and He accounted it to him for righteousness” (15:6). When God promised Abraham and Sarah a son in their old age, Abraham believed God and Isaac was born. And when God asked him to sacrifice Isaac on an altar, again he obeyed and his son was restored to him. Time after time Abraham put his faith in God, and he was considered righteous in the Lord’s eyes.
By the time Abraham turned one hundred years old, he had endured a lifetime of incredible tests of faith and through it all, Scriptures says that he had trusted God. The Lord said of this faithful, obedient man, “I have known him, in order that he may command his children and his household after him, that they keep the way of the Lord, to do righteousness and justice” (18:19).
God himself said of this man of faith, “I trust Abraham. He has a proven faith.” What a marvelous thing it is to be considered faithful in the eyes of the Lord.