The Ram that Saved the Day

Ten Interesting Stories of Animals in the Bible

Welcome to Week Four

How it works:

  • Listen to the story, then think about the questions.
  • Finally, hear what Sophie and Timley have to say about it!

This is a reading from Genesis 22:1-18.

  1. Did anything surprise in this story surprise you?
  2. Do you think God really wanted Abraham to sacrifice Isaac on the altar? If not, what do you think God wanted Abraham to learn by such a drastic test?
  3. Before going up the mountain for the sacrifice, Abraham tells his servants that “we’ll come back to you.” What do you think Abraham believed would happen on the mountain?
  4. A ram is in the sheep family. When Isaac asks his father where the lamb is for the sacrifice, Abraham answered that the “Lord will provide.” Do you think Abraham and Isaac just got lucky when Abraham saw the ram caught in the thicket? Why or why not?
  5. God tells Abraham to “Take your son, your only son, Isaac, whom you love,” to the place for the sacrifice. We know from other Bible passages, like Genesis 17:18, that Abraham had another son named Ishmael, and that he loved him, too. Why do you think God refers to Isaac this way here? Hint: Check Gen. 15:4-5, 12:2-3, 18:13, and 21:1-3 for some ideas!
  6. What was Abraham’s reward for his faith and obedience?
  7. Why do you think this story is in the Bible? What does it tell us about God and his relationship with people and the rest of his creation?

Now let’s hear from Sophie and Timley. What have they got to say about it?

Sophie Topfeather (clapping her wing feathers together): Hoo hoo hu hoo! A story with an angel in it, like the one Shep told us in Bethlehem! Wouldn’t you love to see an angel, Timley?

Timley Mouse: I was just thinking about the ram in the story, Shep told us a story about sheep, too. Remember the story of Jesus, the Great Shepherd, who searches after his lost sheep? Did you know that Jesus is also sometimes called the Lamb of God?

Sophie (looking thoughtful): Interesting! So many sheep! Why would Jesus, the Shepherd, also be called a Lamb?

Timley (sucking for a moment on his tail while thinking): Well, in this story, the ram dies in place of Isaac, and Jesus died in place of well, everyone, since we can’t be good enough on our own to be with God forever.  

Sophie: It’s amazing how Bible stories fit together like that–angels, shepherds, lambs . . . .

Timley: Right! Even the mountain where this story takes place is in Jerusalem (before it was Jerusalem), where Jesus went to die on the cross. Speaking of crosses, you remember Jerusalem, right?

Sophie (fingering the olive wood cross necklace Timley had given her in the Holy Land that she always wore): Of course, I do! Hee hee–I bet you sure remember Jerusalem. Care to go back?

Timley (his tail whacking nervously back and forth behind him): No thank you! I’m just glad we got out of that place in one piece!

Author’s Note: Sophie and Timley are characters from a novel for kids ages 8-12, Sophie’s Quest, by Sonja Anderson.

Stay tuned for Week 5: “Pass Over some Roasted Lamb and Flat Bread, Please!”

Please share this with friends who might like to learn more about the Bible, too!

About Sonja Anderson

I write novels and picture books for children, and occasionally an article or short story for adults, too. I grew up in Ohio, and I have lived in Chicago, Connecticut, Boston, Tokyo, and Seattle. The beautiful Pacific Northwest inspires me every day.
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