Jesus, the Better Isaac
One of the greatest Bible reading tips my pastor gave to me was to remember that the people in the Bible aren’t only characters, they were real humans. Each and every man, woman, and child within the 66 books of the Bible were persons with actual egos, emotions, and expectations. Go ahead and place yourself in this scene: Abraham, after not being able to conceive a child with his wife, Sarah, finally does. And they birth a boy named Isaac who is the promise from god to further their family. now, a few years later, we find ourselves with abraham and his son, climbing up a hillside. isaac is unaware of the reason behind this journey, but he is obedient to the direction of his father. picture isaac struggling to carry the bundle of wood up the hill. finally, reaching their destination, isaac realizes something. he looks to his father, abraham, and asks, “Behold, the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?” (GENESIS 22:7). wow, i wonder what that conversation looked like? the confusion, the desperation, the pain, the angst.
“When they came to the place of which God had told him, Abraham built the altar there and laid the wood in order and bound Isaac his son and laid him on the altar, on top of the wood. Then Abraham reached out his hand and took the knife to slaughter his son. But the angel of the Lord called to him from heaven and said, “Abraham, Abraham!" And he said, "Here I am." He said, "Do not lay your hand on the boy or do anything to him, for now I know that you fear God, seeing you have not withheld your son, your only son, from me” (Gen 22:9-12).
With this in mind, it reveals the true depth of Romans 8:32: “He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all.” Do you see the parallels? While God didn’t allow Abraham to go through with the sacrifice of his only son, Isaac. God did. We see Isaac and his father climbing a hill, Isaac carrying the very same wood that we would be laid on, heaven looking down as Abraham is holding the knife, about to slaughter his son. this is a foreshadowing of the death of jesus. we can recall the setting of jesus’ death. god the son walking up the hill of calvary, carrying the cross made from the wood he created. Jesus was the true and better Isaac who gave himself to be slain. then the hand of god reaches down and slays his son, his only son. Russ Ramsey, says EXTRAORDINARILY in his devotional written for he reads truth, “Here is the main difference between Isaac and Jesus: Had Isaac died, the promise of a nation belonging to God would have died with him. The line of Abraham would have ended. But had Jesus not died, there would be no Kingdom at all.”
How good is god to not spare his only son, but to give him up to die so that we may live? It is through the death of Jesus that we find life. are there things in your life that you aren’t willing to give up for god? maybe it isn’t your first born child; but maybe your phone? maybe your instagram? maybe your home? please don’t mishear me, i am not saying you should give them up… what i am saying is they shouldn’t be so valuable to you that you wouldn’t be willing to give them up if god calls you to it. how great the faith of abraham was.