O Lord in heaven, I thank Thee. After all it is better for him to believe that I am a monster, rather than that he should lose faith in Thee.Could I, if called to that extremity, ever be that father? Isaac was not a young man at the time of the aborted sacrifice. The story of Abraham is closer to my current situation than was true then. Though I have five sons now, which dilutes the effect.
I have many times thought No, I could never get within a hundred yards of such obedience to God at the expense of any son, even if I were sure it was God's voice. But I have also thought Of course you could. You have done a dozen impossible things in your life simply by saying "I must," and moving forward, almost without feeling. It only takes a moment.
To do such a thing, even if God rescued, would be to cut myself off from one and perhaps all sons for the rest of my life - the chief joys of my life, I think. Yet if it were actually necessary. If it really were a trade that they must hate me or hate God - with whatever eternal consequences that entailed - could I find that moment of obedience, however much I rued it for years after?
Even harder: could I do it for some sons and not others?
When we reach heaven, half of us will run to Abraham to embrace him and weep. The other half will run to Isaac to embrace him and weep. God grant that every tear be dried.