DO WE TRY TO BARGAIN WITH GOD?
Abraham “bargained” with God in trying to save Sodom, Moses “bargained” with God in an attempt to assuage God’s anger against the Jewish people when they were found to be worshipping a golden calf. However, are the ways in we which we attempt to “strike a deal” with God the same? In neither of these instances, did Abraham or Moses say to God, “if you do this, I will do this…” When God asked Abraham to sacrifice his beloved son, Abraham did not offer all his wealth or any action that might change God’s mind, he believed in and loved God so deeply that he simply trusted and obeyed.
If may be a natural part of our human nature to want things our way – to say to God, “if you’ll just get me out of this mess, or if you will heal someone dear to me, or any number of requests we, His children, find important in our lives. We might have bargained with, “I’ll go to church more often, or contribute more money or anything else we feel might sway His answer our way. We may even feel at times as though our bargaining has worked – the answer to our prayer has been as we desired. However, the answer we were given is not a result of our “bargaining,” but because God alone determined it was good in His divine plan for us – it was not a prize for good behavior. Does God want us to pray and present our petitions? Of course He does, He says so often in the Scriptures, but God owes us nothing, however, we owe Him everything.
God promises to hear our prayers, but we must be open and trusting to accept His answer, an answer we may not understand until we see Him face to face. Does God really need to be persuaded to be kind and merciful? Is there any greater demonstration of His love than sending His only Son to redeem us so we might spend eternal life with Him?