parents have dreams and aspirations for their children. even when a child is still in the womb, parents a plotting out their new edition’s pathway towards success.
irrespective of physical and mental realities, parents take on sometimes irrational beliefs of their child’s destiny; the next “tiger woods,” the next “albert einstein.” life often gets in the way of dreams. the future nba star grows to only 5’7″ with a short wingspan. the next jonas salk has little aptitude toward biology or biochemistry.
dreams are dreams. they are not reality. likewise, one person’s dreams can be another’s nightmare. abraham’s attempted sacrifice of isaac falls into this topic. abraham, with his covenant with the master of the universe, understood that he was to transcend his mere self and become the father of nations. to this extent, his son’s sacrifice was in part to fulfill his dream.
the debate over the binding of isaac has led some scholars to believe that there was an actual sacrifice of isaac. regardless of that point of view, isaac was in fact sacrificed. he was the one who had the unwelcome and not agreed upon experience of being placed on an altar. he experienced his father ready and willing to plunge a knife into him.
the psychological impact of this event upon isaac was significant. he was emotionally crippled. he had problems with his mother’s passing. he had problems dealing with the conflict concerning birthright and blessings.
this story is a parenting cautionary tale. parents’ dreams can blind them towards the consequences that may arise. the child’s reality must also be a factor into providing a child direction. this irony is not lost as this tale is recounted in many sermons on the topic. not too often is the impact on isaac’ ever addressed. likewise, parents often don’t appreciate their children’s emotions.
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