"The Binding of Isaac"
Shalom Partner and Friend of
Three thousand seven years ago, a
To understand just how important this piece of real estate is ~ a piece of land that wars have been fought over for many centuries ~ we need to go back in time to see what exactly took place there and why it is so important today.
The promised child~~~
Following the call of God, Abraham left the comfort of
"0 Lord God," Abraham complained, "what wilt Thou give me, since I am childless and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus?" (Genesis 15:2).
God reiterated His promise of descendants from Abraham's own loins: "This man will not be your heir; but one who shall come forth from your own body; he shall be your heir" (Genesis 15:1).
In time, God appeared to Abraham at the oaks of Mamre, saying, "I will surely return to you at this time next year; and behold, Sarah your wife shall have a son" (Genesis ). The amazing rejuvenation of the aged Abraham and Sarah followed by the miraculous birth of their beautiful new baby Isaac (son of promise) (Genesis 15:1) was a most awesome manifestation of the supreme power of God to bring about anything He wants. Isaac was living proof of the power of prayer and Abraham's faith and hope in God.
Abraham's pathway is the path of prayer: speaking out the inner-most yearnings of our hearts sincerely and honestly in the simplest of words and offering them to God, a service performed for the simple reason that this is what He wants of us: to turn to Him and ask Him for everything we need and desire. For this is the way to come to know and understand that everything in the world is from God.
Moreover, isn’t God eternal and unchanging, as God declares: “I have not changed” (Malachi 3:6), implying that He does not change His mind?
The Akedah: The Binding of Isaac~~~
The Binding of Isaac in Genesis 22: 1 – 24 is a story from the Bible in which God asks Abraham to sacrifice his son, Isaac, on
While it is often imagined that Isaac was a small child upon their arrival at the setting of the altar, some traditional sources claim he was an adult (noting that Jews are considered adults at age 13). The Book of Genesis does not tell the age of Isaac at the time; the Talmudic sages teach that Isaac was thirty-seven, likely based on the next biblical story, which is of Sarah's death at 127 (she was ninety when Isaac was born). Bishop Ussher's chronology would place Isaac at about 20 years of age.
We also do not know when Abraham was told to sacrifice his son. In light of that awesome command from God, dates and times seemed inconsequential. Yet Jewish tradition suggests a date: the first of Tishri, or Rosh Hashanah.
Pious Jews today still plead with God to impute to them the merits of the fathers, especially their most righteous ancestor, Abraham, who was faithful to the point of offering his son as a sacrifice to God.
The Jewish people remind God that indeed, there is some goodness in man, as if saying, "Look at Abraham, Lord, at what he was willing to sacrifice for You! Surely there must be some degree of his faithfulness in us! Won't you look upon us with mercy for his sake? We cannot measure up to him, but we beg for your mercy on account of his righteousness! "
In “The Guide for the Perplexed,” Maimonides argues that the story of “The Binding of Isaac” contains two "great notions." First, Abraham's willingness to sacrifice Isaac demonstrates the limit of humanity's capability to both love and fear God. Second, because Abraham acted on a prophetic vision of what God had asked him to do.
We cannot possibly fathom the love that Abraham felt for Isaac. Yet as great as his love was for his son, Abraham's love for God was even greater, for at God's request he was willing to sacrifice his soul's delight upon the altar.
In Isaac was the fulfilment of God's promises. For Isaac he had left
The promised son of Abraham leads us to the promised Son of God in whom all is fulfilled ~ the promises to Abraham, Isaac, Moses, David, Israel, and all the world.
For Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, David-all these and many other righteous in
Great indeed was Abraham's love for Isaac, yet it pales when compared with God's love for His own Son. Abraham's love had grown from a close, intimate fellowship throughout the child's life, but the fellowship of the Father and the Son existed from eternity! Abraham's love was temporal, but the Father's love for Yeshua (Jesus) was eternal.
And God did not ask of Abraham what He would ultimately demand from Himself. He did not allow Abraham to slay His son, yet He did not spare His own Son. He was obligated by His holiness to turn His face from Yeshua (Jesus); the One He had loved through all eternity. In this the love of God was perfectly expressed; He allowed His only Son to die for the sins of unworthy men (Romans 5:8).
Abraham's love for Isaac and his willingness to sacrifice his son are only the dimmest foreshadowing of God's own sacrifice on behalf of the world.
“By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac, and he who had received the promises offered up his only begotten son, of whom it was said, "In Isaac your seed shall be called," concluding that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead, from which he also received him in a figurative sense. (Hebrews 11:17–19, NKJV)
After three days of anguish after Abraham was commanded to sacrifice Isaac they finally reached
Isaac accompanied Abraham, never expecting that he himself was to be the burnt offering. When he questioned his father about the sacrificial lamb, he was readily assured by Abraham that God would provide the animal at the right time. Isaac must have been terrified as his father took the rope, wound it around him, and placed his bound body upon the altar. Yet he lay without struggle. In obedience to his beloved father and to God, Isaac allowed himself to be prepared for sacrifice.
Abraham stretched out his arm, gathering the courage to plunge the blade into his son's flesh. Suddenly, he heard a voice. "Abraham! ... Do not stretch out your hand against the lad ... for now I know that you fear God, since you have not withheld your son, your only son, from Me" (Genesis -12).
Abraham's thankfulness to discover the substitute ram was beyond description… but what of Isaac's feelings? Was he not justified in resenting the God who had demanded his life for no apparent reason? No! Throughout the rest of his life, Isaac continued to be an obedient son and a faithful follower of his father's God. What an example of faith and obedience!
Quote: The Shofar blown at
The obedience of Yeshua (Jesus) was much greater still. In agony, He cried out to God to be delivered from the bitter cup of death, yet obedience to His Father's will propelled Him to His destiny, to fulfill the mission for which He had come. Hundreds of years before, the prophet Isaiah had written, "He was oppressed and He was afflicted, yet He did not open His mouth; like a lamb that is led to slaughter, and like a sheep that is silent before its shearers, so He did not open His mouth" (Isaiah 53:7).
Isaac a foreshadowing of Yeshua (Jesus) ~~~
Like Isaac's birth, the birth of Yeshua (Jesus) was a miracle. The child Yeshua was conceived through the power of the Holy Spirit (Luke ).
In the same way God made a promise to Abraham, He promised to send His Son to be the redeemer of Abraham's seed and of the whole world. Centuries before His birth, the Scriptures foretold the coming of One who would be God incarnate. His miraculous birth would bring the Lord Himself to dwell among men (Isaiah ). He would be worthy to bear the name of God (Isaiah 9:6 - 7) and receive the homage of the nations (Psalm 2).
We do not know Isaac's age at the time of the Akedah. He was definitely old enough to carry the wood for the burnt offering to
Proverbs also contains an astounding reference to Him: "Who has ascended into heaven and descended? Who has gathered the wind in His fists? Who has wrapped the waters in His garment? Who has established all the ends of the earth? What is His name or His Son's name? Surely you know!" (Proverbs 30:4).
Isaac was certainly a type of the “greater Son” whose coming would fulfill the hopes of all people. Yet Isaac was more than merely a type, for it was from his own loins that the future Son of Promise would be born. Yeshua the Messiah was a direct descendant of Isaac.
Old Testament: Isaac, Abraham’s only covenant son. New Testament: Jesus, God’s only begotten Son.
Old Testament: Abraham and Isaac saw the mountain on the 3rd day. New Testament: Yeshua (Jesus) was raised on the 3rd day.
Old Testament: Isaac carried the wood on his back and also lay on his back on the wood. New Testament: Yeshua (Jesus) carried the cross on his back and was nailed onto the cross with His back on the wood.
Old Testament: Predicted that a lamb would be seen on
Old Testament: Abraham took Isaac to
Old Testament: Abraham represents God the Father and Isaac the only begotten Son.
Old Testament: Two servants accompanied Abraham and Isaac to
The rabbis believed that the sacrifice of Isaac was more than a "close call." One passage of the traditional literature tells us that Isaac actually died of terror while bound upon the altar and was revived by the voice from heaven telling his father to stay the knife (Pirke de Rabbi Eliezer 31).
The Jewish writers of the New Testament echoed this traditional belief, as they spoke of Isaac as a type of Christ. The author of Hebrews wrote, "He [Abraham] considered that God is able to raise men even from the dead; from which he also received him back as a type" (Hebrews ). Whether or not Isaac actually died and was resurrected, he was offered to God in Abraham's heart and returned to his father as if raised from the dead.
Isaac, the "child of promise," lived as having been resurrected from the dead. In this, he is a type of all New Covenant believers, for we too live in "newness of life," having died with Christ and made alive through His resurrection (Romans 6:4).
Abraham believed God could raise Isaac from the dead. When he told his servants that he and Isaac were going up to the mountain to offer the sacrifice, he said, "Stay here with the donkey, and I and the lad will go yonder; and we will worship and return to you" (Genesis 22:5). Abraham did not say, "If we return." He said, "We will return." He had faith that the lad would come back. Resurrection hope must have been central to Abraham's faith. How else could he resolve the conflict between God's command to sacrifice his son and the divine promise that was rooted in Isaac?
It is especially significant, then, that the offering of Isaac took place on
The name Moriah is “composed of two words meaning "to see" and the other being the name of God. The name literally means "the ~ shown of Jehovah" or even "the manifestation of Jehovah."
Abraham called the mountain "Jehovah Jireh," which means "God will provide." Little did he know that the same mountain would provide substitution for multitudes of his descendants?
King David and King Solomon~~~
Young David, a Bethlehemite shepherd lad from the tribe of
David ruled as king for seven years in
At first the prophet Nathan gave David approval to construct a temple, but the following night God intervened. Speaking to Nathan in a dream God laid out for David an amazing Covenant whose promises continue to this present day. God committed himself to establishing the house of David forever, to a specific land and people (
David, a man of war, was not, however, to build the
The fact that other nations had temples and
For many centuries, the event saturated the space and soil of
The Hijacking of: “The
Islam doesn't just hijack planes; it hijacks the things that are sacred to people. The great cities of the world are littered with relics of the Muslim occupation of their sacred places and turning them into mosques.
It wasn't enough for Muslims to conquer
Muhammad attempted to Islamize Jerusalem and convince the Jews near Medina to join his young community, and by way of persuasion, established the direction of prayer (kiblah) to be to the north, towards Jerusalem, in keeping with Jewish practice; but after he failed in this attempt he turned against the Jews, killed many of them, and directed the kiblah southward, towards Mecca. Muhammad's abandonment of
Another aim of the Islamization of Jerusalem is to undermine the legitimacy of the older religions, Judaism and Christianity, which consider
More than ever before do we need to STAND with
Abraham's sacrifice of Isaac typified gloriously the sacrifice of our Heavenly Father of His Son, and the willingness of the Son, Yeshua, to offer Himself unto salvation of all men, Isaac is a beautiful type of Christ." One day the Shofar will blow, and the spiritual descendants of Isaac will be raised to meet the greater Son of Isaac and enjoy His presence forever. Until then, may the willingness of Abraham and the obedience of Isaac serve as an inspiring example to all of us!
We hope that you enjoy and become more informed by our work. We serve an awesome God and we are humbled by this opportunity to bring you this information. With Shalom to you and your family always,
Alf & Julie Saunders
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