The road to friendship was the road of obedience.
This truth is paralleled in the New Testament as well. “If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love. You are My friends if you do whatever I command you. No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you” (John 15:10, 14–15).
The more we understand the nature and character of our Lord and His absolute love, compassion and mercy, the more we will be able to abandon ourselves at His feet, obeying whatever He calls us to do. Through the life of Abraham, we see how obedience and trust precede friendship and blessing.
How was Abraham able to trust and obey the Lord in such a great way? Surely the sacrifices in his life were already great. He gave up his homeland, his riches, everything that was familiar to him—wasn’t that enough? I’m sure a lot of us could talk ourselves out of such a difficult request, especially after already sacrificing so much. But Abraham did not do that. What kept him in obedience and in a tender walk with God was his fear of the Lord. For “by the fear of the LORD one departs from evil” (Proverbs 16:6).