The Book of Genesis
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note: all scripture is from the NKJV unless noted otherwise
· Gen 22:1-2 1 Now it came to pass after these things that God tested Abraham, and said to him, "Abraham!" And he said, "Here I am." 2 Then He said, "Take now your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you."
We looked at these two verses last week, so we won't spend a lot of time in them this week.
But I wanted you to notice that it says that God tested Abraham.
Now this is not a bad testing, as we think about testings, or trials.
The word test in the Hebrew is: nacah (naw-saw') which means to prove.
· James 1:13 (NLT) And remember, no one who wants to do wrong should ever say, "God is tempting me." God is never tempted to do wrong, and he never tempts anyone else either.
The word tempt in James in the Greek is: peirazo (pi-rad'-zo) which is speaking of an evil temptation, or a temptation to cause someone to sin.
So in Genesis, what was happening with Abraham was a proving of Abraham's faith or trust in God.
It wasn't that God needed to find out if He could trust Abraham, but rather it would help Abraham to realize that he could trust in the Lord, which God had shown Abraham in the past as we saw last week.
The place where God told Abraham to offer his son Isaac was called Moriah, which means "chosen by Jehovah". So this was a chosen place and along with the place, God also said "on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you." and why would God choose this place and mountain?
The mountain that Abraham went to is we now know as the "Temple Mount", or the "Dome of the Rock".
This is also the place where the original temple has been, and will be again.
As we discussed a few weeks ago with all that is going on in Israel with the Israelites and Palestinians it all has to do with this mountain, or Temple Mount.
As we discussed the Palestinians believe that Ishmael was offered here by Abraham, and not Isaac. But the bible makes it very clear that Abraham offered Isaac there, and the mountain belongs to the children of Israel.
Also mount Moriah is the same place Jesus was crucified.
· Gen 22:3-8 3 So Abraham rose early in the morning and saddled his donkey, and took two of his young men with him, and Isaac his son; and he split the wood for the burnt offering, and arose and went to the place of which God had told him. 4 Then on the third day Abraham lifted his eyes and saw the place afar off. 5 And Abraham said to his young men, "Stay here with the donkey; the lad and I will go yonder and worship, and we will come back to you." 6 So Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering and laid it on Isaac his son; and he took the fire in his hand, and a knife, and the two of them went together. 7 But Isaac spoke to Abraham his father and said, "My father!" And he said, "Here I am, my son." Then he said, "Look, the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?" 8 And Abraham said, "My son, God will provide for Himself the lamb for a burnt offering." So the two of them went together.
Through this study, we will see God and Jesus and the provision God has made for us for salvation through His Son Jesus.
The first thing we see is in verse 3 "So Abraham rose early in the morning and saddled his donkey" Which we can relate to the book of John with Jesus entering Jerusalem on a donkey to be crucified.
· John 12:14-16 14 Then Jesus, when He had found a young donkey, sat on it; as it is written: 15 "Fear not, daughter of Zion; Behold, your King is coming, Sitting on a donkey's colt." 16 His disciples did not understand these things at first; but when Jesus was glorified, then they remembered that these things were written about Him and that they had done these things to Him.
The next thing in verse 3 is "and he split the wood for the burnt offering".
The word "split" here means to divide. We know that Jesus was crucified on the cross which is wood divided into two pieces to form the cross.
Verse four reads:
4 Then on the third day Abraham lifted his eyes and saw the place afar off.
So God spoke to Abraham and told him to go. Abraham wasn't sure where he was going, only towards the mountains believing that Gods would show him which mountain just as He said in verse two.
· 2 Then He said, "Take now your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you."
If this was done today, with all the high-speed planes and cars, and the attitude of "I need it now", it may have been different, or would it?
Through all that Abraham went through in the past, one thing he learned was patience.
We see this when God promised Abraham and Sarah a child, but it not coming to pass for ten years, also the multiplying of his seed which was only at the starting stage with Isaac.
Sometimes when God tells us or promises us something, and we expect it right now, when God is saying, I promise you this, or I want you to do this, but it won't happen for a few days, or even years.
That's when we learn patience from the Lord. In His time all things will be done, not ours.
· Eph 1:10(NLT) And this is his plan: At the right time he will bring everything together under the authority of Christ--everything in heaven and on earth.
· Isaiah 49:8-9 8 Thus says the LORD: "In an acceptable time I have heard You, And in the day of salvation I have helped You; I will preserve You and give You As a covenant to the people, To restore the earth, To cause them to inherit the desolate heritages; 9 That You may say to the prisoners, 'Go forth,' To those who are in darkness, 'Show yourselves.' "They shall feed along the roads, And their pastures shall be on all desolate heights.
· Psalms 27:14 Wait on the LORD; Be of good courage, And He shall strengthen your heart; Wait, I say, on the LORD!
· Isaiah 40:31 But those who wait on the LORD Shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles, They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint.
Next in verse five we read:
5 And Abraham said to his young men, "Stay here with the donkey; the lad and I will go yonder and worship, and we will come back to you."
"We will come back to you" Now wait a minute, didn't God say to go and sacrifice your son on the alter to ME? But God has an answer for that in the book of Hebrews.
· Heb 11:17-19 (NLT) 17 It was by faith that Abraham offered Isaac as a sacrifice when God was testing him. Abraham, who had received God's promises, was ready to sacrifice his only son, Isaac, 18 though God had promised him, "Isaac is the son through whom your descendants will be counted." 19 Abraham assumed that if Isaac died, God was able to bring him back to life again. And in a sense, Abraham did receive his son back from the dead.
This is why Abraham is known as the father of faith.
· Romans 4:20-22 (NLT) Abraham never wavered in believing God's promise. In fact, his faith grew stronger, and in this he brought glory to God. 21 He was absolutely convinced that God was able to do anything he promised. 22 And because of Abraham's faith, God declared him to be righteous.
Reading this verse it helps explain why Abraham went through all he did as we saw last week. It was a building of his faith.
God does the same with us, allowing us to go through testings and trial so that our faith in Him will increase.
In verses 6-8 we see the prophecy of Jesus as the Lamb that was provided.
· 6 So Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering and laid it on Isaac his son; and he took the fire in his hand, and a knife, and the two of them went together. 7 But Isaac spoke to Abraham his father and said, "My father!" And he said, "Here I am, my son." Then he said, "Look, the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?" 8 And Abraham said, "My son, God will provide for Himself the lamb for a burnt offering." So the two of them went together.
We see this in the book of John.
· John 1:29 The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, "Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!
The key word in these verses is "Lamb" which we will see why.
· Gen 22:9-10 9 Then they came to the place of which God had told him. And Abraham built an altar there and placed the wood in order; and he bound Isaac his son and laid him on the altar, upon the wood. 10 And Abraham stretched out his hand and took the knife to slay his son.
In verse 6 Isaac was to bear the burden of carrying his own wood to be sacrificed with.
Jesus did the same by bearing His carrying his own cross to be crucified on.
· John 19:17 And He, bearing His cross, went out to a place called the Place of a Skull, which is called in Hebrew, Golgotha,
Have you noticed that through all of this that Isaac was obedient to his father, Abraham, even to the point of death? Now Isaac was not a little child or boy, it is even believed that Isaac was a teenager at this time. I'm sure he would have been strong enough to run away from his father, but still he was obedient. And this was even before the Ten Commandments, which say:
· Ex 20:12 "Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the LORD your God is giving you."
It may be because Abraham taught Isaac about God and His faithfulness to him.
Isaac may have heard what his father said in verse 5 "and we will come back to you."
So Isaac trusted in his fathers God. Do your children trust in your God? Who or what is your god? What about others, do they see the God of Abraham as your God too, or do they see another god in your life.
Also we read that Abraham believed God. When I read this it reminds me of a movie I saw called "the bible". In this movie it portrayed this very situation, with Isaac being offered on the altar. But in the movie it showed Abraham trying to reason with God and even doubting God, to the point that he was arguing with and yelling at God.
But there was not doubting or arguing with God here, only obedience.
Was it hard for Abraham to do? I'm sure it was, but Abraham's faith was so strong at this time that he trusted and believed God and His promise to him.
· Gen 22:11-12 11 But the Angel of the LORD called to him from heaven and said, "Abraham, Abraham!" So he said, "Here I am." 12 And He said, "Do not lay your hand on the lad, or do anything to him; for now I know that you fear God, since you have not withheld your son, your only son, from Me."
God did the same thing for us by giving His only begotten Son for us. But God did not stop but allowed His Son Jesus to be crucified for ALL OUR SINS!
· 1 John 4:9-11 9 In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him. 10 In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. 11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.
We say that God doesn't understand or know what I'm going through.
But God knows all to well, and He Himself has gone through every trial and temptation we have, and even those we haven't gone through. He did this through His Son Jesus.
· Heb 2:17-18 (NLT) 17 Therefore, it was necessary for Jesus to be in every respect like us, his brothers and sisters, so that he could be our merciful and faithful High Priest before God. He then could offer a sacrifice that would take away the sins of the people. 18 Since he himself has gone through suffering and temptation, he is able to help us when we are being tempted.
WOW, God did that for us!
Yes God does know what you are going through, and He does understand!
· Gen 22:13-14 13 Then Abraham lifted his eyes and looked, and there behind him was a ram caught in a thicket by its horns. So Abraham went and took the ram, and offered it up for a burnt offering instead of his son. 14 And Abraham called the name of the place, The-LORD-WILL-PROVIDE; as it is said to this day, "In the Mount of The LORD it shall be provided."
One thing I noticed is that in order for the ram to be caught in a thicket (or "bush" as it says in the NLT), the ram had to have been hanging around there. Which would mean that Abraham saw the ram before this time running around, but he didn't try to catch it to offer instead of Isaac.
This may have been a temptation of Satan during this time as Satan was probably telling Abraham all kinds of things trying to stop Abraham from being obedient to God.
You may be thinking that if God provided a ram to replace Isaac then how does the prophecy about Jesus fit in since the ram was provided and it wasn't Jesus.
Remember I told you the key word in verse 8 was "Lamb"?
God provided a "Ram", not a "Lamb" to replace Isaac on the altar. Even in the original Hebrew it calls them "Ram" and "Lamb" with neither implying to the other.
And as we saw in John, Jesus was called the "Lamb of God", this is in the book of Revelation also.
· Rev 5:11-12 11 Then I looked, and I heard the voice of many angels around the throne, the living creatures, and the elders; and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands, 12 saying with a loud voice: "Worthy is the Lamb who was slain To receive power and riches and wisdom, And strength and honor and glory and blessing!"
And in 1 Peter, along with other places throughout the bible referring to Jesus as the Lamb or Lamb of God.
· 1 Peter 1:19 (NLT) He paid for you with the precious lifeblood of Christ, the sinless, spotless Lamb of God.
In verse 14 where it indicates "The-LORD-WILL-PROVIDE", in the KJV it reads "Jehovahjireh" (yeh-ho-vaw' yir-eh').
· Gen 22:14 (KJV) And Abraham called the name of that place Jehovahjireh: as it is said to this day, In the mount of the LORD it shall be seen.
God has many names in the Bible and this is just one of them.
Another is Jehovahnissi (yeh-ho-vaw' nis-see') which means "Jehovah is my banner".
And Jehovahshalom (yeh-ho-vaw' shaw-lome') which means "Jehovah is peace".
And Y@hovah shammah (yeh-ho-vaw' shawm'-maw) which means "Jehovah is there".
And still another is Y@hovah tsidqenuw (ye-ho-vaw' tsid-kay'-noo) meaning "Jehovah is our righteousness".
There are many more but always remember that God is always what you need as He told Moses.
· Ex 3:14 And God said to Moses, "I AM WHO I AM." And He said, "Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, 'I AM has sent me to you.' "
He is what you needed in the past, need now, and will need in the future!
· Gen 22:15-19 15 Then the Angel of the LORD called to Abraham a second time out of heaven, 16 and said: "By Myself I have sworn, says the LORD, because you have done this thing, and have not withheld your son, your only son-- 17 "blessing I will bless you, and multiplying I will multiply your descendants as the stars of the heaven and as the sand which is on the seashore; and your descendants shall possess the gate of their enemies. 18 "In your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice." 19 So Abraham returned to his young men, and they rose and went together to Beersheba; and Abraham dwelt at Beersheba.
Here God is reaffirming His promise to Abraham, but God also added an additional promise.
· Gen 22:17 (NLT) I will bless you richly. I will multiply your descendants into countless millions, like the stars of the sky and the sand on the seashore. They will conquer their enemies,
"They will conquer their enemies," which was not part of God's promise before.
In verse 18 it says, "all the nations will be blessed", not just Israel but us too. Referring to Jesus as the blessing for all nations.
· Gen 22:20-24 20 Now it came to pass after these things that it was told Abraham, saying, "Indeed Milcah also has borne children to your brother Nahor: 21 "Huz his firstborn, Buz his brother, Kemuel the father of Aram, 22 "Chesed, Hazo, Pildash, Jidlaph, and Bethuel." 23 And Bethuel begot Rebekah. These eight Milcah bore to Nahor, Abraham's brother. 24 His concubine, whose name was Reumah, also bore Tebah, Gaham, Thahash, and Maachah.
Who are Milcah and Nahor?
Nahor was Abraham's actual brother, and we read about them back in Genesis chapter 11
· Gen 11:27-29 27 This is the genealogy of Terah: Terah begot Abram, Nahor, and Haran. Haran begot Lot. 28 And Haran died before his father Terah in his native land, in Ur of the Chaldeans. 29 Then Abram and Nahor took wives: the name of Abram's wife was Sarai, and the name of Nahor's wife, Milcah, the daughter of Haran the father of Milcah and the father of Iscah.
The next name I want you to remember is Rebekah, which we will start reading about in chapter 24.
1 Peter 1:19 (NLT) He paid for you with the precious lifeblood of Christ, the sinless, spotless Lamb of God.