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Study 6: Isaac - His Obedience Unto Death

Text: Genesis: 22:1-10

God had said to Abraham "...Take now thy son , thine only son Isaac whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah, and offer him there for a burnt offering upon the mount which I will tell the of." -Genesis 22:2. This incidence took place at about 2045 BC.

Abraham obeyed God and set out with two of his servants and Isaac went with them. On the third day of their journey Abraham saw the place afar off and told his servants to wait behind. And he would go up to the mountain and worship God with his son Isaac. Abraham then laid the wood for the offering on Isaac while he (Abraham) held the fire and the knife. (Genesis 22:4-6).

The drama about Isaac started when he became curious and said to his father "... Behold the fire and the wood: but where is the lamb for a burnt offering. And Abraham said to him ... God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt offering." -Genesis 22:7-8. Isaac believed his father with pure, innocent, child-like faith and went along with him.

INSIGHT: God has said to us that the thought HE thinks towards us is the thought of peace and not of evil (Jeremiah 29:11) "For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous." -1 John 5:3. Abraham had cared for Isaac right from his birth with so much tenderly love. Isaac knew it and believed that the thought of his father about him could never be evil. So, he believed his father and continues to follow and obey him with pure child-like faith and love for it shall be well with us. (Ephesians 5:1-2)

"And they came to the place which God had told him of; and Abraham built an altar there, and laid the wood in order, and bound Isaac his son, and laid him on the altar upon the wood. And Abraham stretched forth his hand, and took the knife to slay his son." - Genesis 22:9-10. At this point the whole event took a new turn. With this happening, it became obvious to Isaac that he was the lamb for the sacrifice.

Discussion: What could be the natural survival instinctive reaction of any human being to this attempt to take his life by cutting him into pieces?

  • (a) There would be a resistance from the one in danger of being killed.
  • (b) Isaac could have taken advantage of his youthful strength to overpower and free himself from his aged and feeble father, may even have attempted to take vengeance to be sure Abraham would never be in existence to attempt again to kill him.
  • (c) Isaac would have gone around slandering Abraham as a murdererous father.
  • (d) Instead, like a sheep led to the slaughter he did not open his mouth. (Isaiah 53:7).

THE GIFT OF GOD: The Bible says: "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." - John 3:16

 "He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth." - Isaiah 53:7

Like Jesus who came not to do his will but the will of his Father, Isaac also made total submission of his life to do the will of his father Abraham-even unto death. The Bible says: "I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me." - John 5:30 (Matthew 26:39). In teaching, Christ said whosoever seeks to save his life shall lose it but he that seeks to lose his life shall find it.... if any man come to me and hate not his own life also, he can not be my disciple. (Matthew 16:24-25, Luke 14:26-27). Isaac yielded his life to the will of the father unto death but "he found it" (Genesis 22:11-14)

Occasions will surely come when the will of God will be such that shall demand our obedience even in the face of death. What will your reaction be?

MEMORY VERSE: "Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross." -Philippians 2:5-8

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