ESL Lesson 5 – God Tests Abraham, Part 2

Lesson 5

God Tests Abraham

Genesis 22: 1-19


God promised Abraham that He would have so many offspring, that he wouldn’t be able to count them.  God told Abraham that He would give him and his offspring a homeland.  God would make a nation out of the offspring of Abraham’s son, Isaac.  Isaac was the person God would use to make his promise to Abraham come true. 


Abraham and Sarah loved Isaac very much.  Isaac was their miracle child, born to them in their old age.


Isaac grew up to be a strong boy.  One day, when Isaac was probably a teenager, God asked Abraham to do a very strange thing.


God told Abraham, “Take your only son, Isaac and go to a certain mountain.  I want you to sacrifice him and offer him to Me.”


Ever since Adam, the first man on earth, had sinned, God told His people to offer sacrifices to Him.  They would use a special animal, like a lamb.  They would kill the animal, lay it on an altar, and burn it.  When they did this they were showing God that they knew they had sinned.  They knew they deserved to be punished.  They deserved to die for their sin.  But instead of dying for their own sin, they killed an animal.  The animal died in their place. 


The animal was a symbol of Jesus.  One day Jesus would come to the earth and die for the sins of every person on earth.  Those who believed in Jesus would be forgiven for their sins.  Before Jesus came to the earth, God asked people to sacrifice animals to show that they were sorry for their sins.  By doing this they also showed that they believed Jesus would come to earth and die for their sins.


Abraham had sacrificed many animals to God.  But this time God told him, “I don’t want you to sacrifice an animal.  I want you to sacrifice your own son, Isaac.”


Abraham loved Isaac.  He did not want to kill his son.  But Abraham also loved God.  He wanted to obey God.  God had promised that Isaac would have children and many, many offspring.  Abraham knew God always keeps His promises.  Abraham did not understand why God would ask him to sacrifice his son.  But he decided to obey God.  Abraham trusted God to make everything work out all right.



strong (adj)

kill (v)

teenager (n)

burn (v)

sacrifice (v)

in their place

offer (v)

symbol (n)

sacrifice (n)

work out

lamb (n)





1.  What did God ask Abraham to do to Isaac?

2.  When the Jews sacrificed animals, what were they showing God?

3.  When someone sacrificed an animal it was a picture of what            person?

4.  Did Abraham understand why God wanted him to sacrifice his         son?


The next morning Abraham started on his trip to go to the place God had told him about.  He took two of his servants and Isaac with him. 

On the third day Abraham could see the place far away from them.  He told his servants to stay with the donkey while he and Isaac climbed the mountain.  He said, “Isaac and I will worship God.  When we are done we will come back to you.”


Abraham asked Isaac to carry the wood.  Abraham carried the fire and the knife.  As the two climbed the mountain Isaac said, “Father, we have the fire and wood.  But where is the lamb we will use for the sacrifice?”


Isaac probably thought that Abraham had forgotten to bring a lamb to sacrifice.  But Abraham had not forgotten.


Abraham said, “God will provide the lamb for us to use.” 


When they arrived at the place God had told him about, Abraham built an altar.  He put the wood on the altar.  He tied Isaac up and laid him on top of the wood on the altar.  Then he took the knife to kill his son.


Just then God called out to him from heaven, “Abraham!”


“What, Lord?” Abraham said.


God said, “Do not kill your son.  Now I know that you love Me and trust Me.  I know you want to obey Me because you were willing to give up your only son, Isaac for Me.”


Abraham looked up and saw a lamb caught in the bushes.  He took the lamb and sacrificed it instead of his son Isaac.   


God told Abraham, “Because you were willing to sacrifice your son for me, I will certainly help you and all of your offspring.



servant (n)

give up

donkey (n)

catch (v)

forget (v)

bush (n)

provide (v)




Irregular Verbs



Past Participle




has forgotten

will forget



has caught

will catch



5.  When Isaac asked his father where the lamb for the sacrifice           was, what did Abraham say?

6.  Did Abraham kill his son?

7.  What did Abraham kill in place of Isaac?


To Think About

1.  In this story, Isaac was a strong young boy.  His father was an old man, well over one hundred years old.  Isaac could have refused* to lay on the altar.  Isaac could have fought* with his father, or run away.  Why do you think he didn’t?


2.  In what way was Isaac like Jesus?  Could Jesus have stopped people from killing Him?  Why do you think He didn’t? 


3.  The Bible says because each person has sinned, each person deserves to die.  That means when his body dies, his spirit* should be separated from God forever. 

Jesus is the only person who has never sinned.  Jesus was a person and God at the same time.  Because he is God, Jesus cannot sin.  Because Jesus did not have sin of his own, he died for the sins of all people.  If a person is sorry for his sin and asks God to forgive him, God will forgive him.  Then when the person’s body dies, his spirit will go to live with God forever.



refuse (v)

spirit (n)

fight (fought) (v)



Irregular Verbs



Past Participle




has fought

will fight