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Verses of Genesis 22

6

Genesis 22:6 Commentary - Charles Simeon's Horae Homileticae (Old and New Testaments)

DISCOURSE: 34
ISAAC A TYPE OF CHRIST

Gen 22:6-10. And Abraham took the wood of the burnt-offering, and laid it upon Isaac his son: and he took the fire in his hand, and a knife: and they went both of them together. And Isaac spake unto Abraham his father, and said, My father: and he said, Here am I, my son. And he said, Behold the fire and the wood; but where is the lamb for a burnt-offering? And Abraham said, My son, God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt-offering. So they went both of them together. 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.

MANY and wonderful are the instances of faith and obedience recorded in the Scriptures. But no action whatever (those only of our Lord himself excepted) has at any time surpassed or equaled that related in the text. It justly obtained for him who performed it, the honourable title of The Father of the Faithful, and, The Friend of God [Note: Jam 2:21; Jam 2:23.]. We shall find it profitable to consider,

I.

The history itself—

Abraham had often enjoyed intimate and immediate communion with the Deity. But now he heard the command which was of a most singular and afflictive nature—
[God in some way clearly intimated to Abraham his will: nor left him to doubt one moment, whether it were his voice or not. He commanded Abraham to take his only, his beloved son, Isaac, and to offer him up as a burnt-offering in a place that should afterwards be pointed out. How strange the order! How difficult to be complied with! How well might Abraham have said, “Would God I might die for thee, O Isaac, my son, my son!”]
Instantly, however, and without reluctance, he arose to execute the will of God—
[Had he presumed to reason with God, what specious arguments might he have adduced for declining the way of duty! The certainty of his being reproached by Sarah, “A bloody husband art thou to me [Note: Exo 4:25-26.]:” the offence that would be taken by all the neighbouring nations against him, his religion, and his God: the counteracting and defeating of all the promises which had been made by God himself, and which were to be accomplished solely in and through his son Isaac [Note: Gen 17:19.]: all this, with much more, might have been offered in excuse for his backwardness, if indeed he had been backward, to accomplish the will of God. But he conferred not with flesh and blood [Note: Gal 1:16.].]

Nor was he diverted from his purpose during the whole of his journey—
[Having prepared the wood, he proceeded instantly, with Isaac and his servants, towards the place that God had pointed out. Nor did he open his intentions to Sarah, lest she should labour to dissuade him from his purpose. But what must have been his thoughts every time that he looked on Isaac? Yet never for one moment did he relax his determination to execute the divine command. Having come in sight of the mountain, he ordered his servants to abide in their place, lest they should officiously interpose to prevent the intended offering. He put the wood on his son, and carried the fire and the knife in his own hands. Affecting as these preparations must have been to a father’s heart, how must their poignancy have been heightened by that pertinent question, which was put to him by his son ! His answer, like many other prophetical expressions, conveyed more than he himself probably was aware of at the moment. Without giving a premature disclosure of his intention, he declares the advent of Jesus, that Lamb of God, who in due time should come to take away the sin of the world [Note: ; Joh 1:29.]. Thus for three successive days did he maintain his resolution firm and unshaken.]

Having arrived at the spot determined by God, he with much firmness and composure proceeded to execute his purpose—
[He built the altar, and laid the wood upon it in due order. Then with inexpressible tenderness announced to Isaac the command of God. Doubtless he would remind his son of his preternatural birth; and declare to him God’s right to take away, in any manner he pleased, the gift he bestowed [Note: Job 1:21.]. He would exhort him to confide in God as a faithful and unchangeable God; and to rest assured, that he should, in some way or other, be restored, after he was reduced to ashes, and have every promise fulfilled to him. Having thus gained the consent of his son, he binds him hand and foot, and lays him on the altar; and, with a confidence unshaken, and obedience unparalleled, holds up the knife to slay the victim. Whether shall we more admire the resolution of the father, or the submission of the son? O that there were in all of us a similar determination to sacrifice our dearest interests for God; and a similar readiness to yield up our very lives in obedience to his will!]

Nothing but the interposition of God himself prevented the completion of this extraordinary sacrifice—
[God had sufficiently tried the faith of his servant. He therefore, by a voice from heaven, stopped him from giving the fatal blow; ordered him to substitute a ram in the place of Isaac; renewed to him with an oath his former promises; rendered him a pattern to all succeeding generations; and, no doubt, is at this instant rewarding him with a weight of glory, proportioned to his exalted piety.]
Almost every circumstance in this narrative deserves to be considered in,

II.

Its typical reference—

Waving many less important points, we may observe that Isaac was a type of Christ:

1.

In his appointment to be a sacrifice—

[Isaac was a child of promise, born in a preternatural way, of a disposition eminently pious; yet him did God require for a burnt-offering: it must not be Abraham’s cattle, or his son Ishmael, but his beloved Isaac. Thus was Jesus also, the promised seed, named, like Isaac, before he was conceived in the womb: he was born, not after the manner of other men, but of a pure virgin: He was that only, that beloved Son, in whom the Father was well pleased: yet him did God appoint to be a sacrifice. A body was given him for this very purpose [Note: Heb 10:4-5.]. He was ordained from eternity to be a propitiation for sin [Note: Rom 3:25.]: nor did the Father recede from his purpose for four thousand years. Having set apart his Son for this end, he changed not: and Jesus, at the appointed time, became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross [Note: Php 2:8.].”]

2.

In the manner of being offered—

[Isaac bore the wood on which he was afterwards to be lifted up; and voluntarily yielded up his body to be bound, and his life to be destroyed in God’s appointed way. Thus did Jesus bear his cross to the place of his crucifixion; and, having been bound, was lifted up upon it. On the very spot where Isaac had been laid upon the altar, was Jesus (most probably) offered in sacrifice to God [Note: Mount Calvary was one of the mountains in that small tract of country called the land of Moriah: and from it can scarcely be doubted, but that it was the very spot pointed out by God. It could not possibly be far from the spot; and therefore, when the place for the sacrifice of Isaac was so accurately marked, it can scarcely he thought to be any other, than the very place where Jesus was offered two thousand years afterwards.]. And by whose hand was Isaac to bleed, but by that of his own Father? By whom too did Jesus suffer, but by Jehovah’s sword [Note: Zec 13:7; Isa 53:10.] ? It was not man, who made him so to agonize in the garden; nor was it man, that caused that bitter complaint upon the cross [Note: Luk 22:44; Mar 15:34.]. Nevertheless it was with the perfect concurrence of his own will that he died upon the cross; “He gave himself an offering and a sacrifice to God, for a sweet smelling savour [Note: Eph 5:2.].”]

There is one point, however, wherein the resemblance does not appear—
[For Isaac was found a substitute; for Jesus none. Neither the cattle on a thousand hills, nor all the angels in heaven, could have stood in his place. None but Jesus could have made a full atonement for our sins. He therefore saved not himself, because He was determined to save us.]

Infer—
1.

How marvellous is the love of God to man!

[We admire the obedience of Abraham: but God had a right to demand it: and Abraham knew, that he was about to give his son to his best and dearest friend. But what claim had we on God? Yet did he give up his Son for us, for us sinners, rebels, enemies; nor merely to a common death, but to the agonies of crucifixion, and to endure the wrath due to our iniquities [Note: Isa 53:6.]. What stupendous love! Shall any soul be affected with a pathetic story, and remain insensible of the love of God? Let every heart praise him, trust him, serve him: and rest assured, that He, who delivered up his Son for us, will never deny us any other thing that we can ask [Note: Rom 8:32.] ]

2.

What an admirable grace is faith!

[The faith of Abraham certainly had respect to Christ, the promised seed [Note: Heb 11:17-19.]. And, behold how it operated! So will it operate in all who have it. It will keep us from staggering at any promise, however dark or improbable; and will lead us to obey every precept, however difficult or self-denying. Let us seek his faith: and, while we are justified by it from the guilt of sin, let us manifest its excellence by a life of holiness.]


Verses of Genesis 22

6

Consult other comments:

Genesis 22:6 - Joseph Benson’s Commentary on the Old and New Testaments

Genesis 22:6 - The Cambridge Bible for Schools and Colleges

Genesis 22:6 - Adam Clarke's Commentary and Critical Notes on the Bible

Genesis 22:6 - Commentary on the Holy Bible by Thomas Coke

Genesis 22:6 - Companion Bible Notes, Appendices and Graphics

Genesis 22:6 - Gary Hampton Commentary on Selected Books

Genesis 22:6 - John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

Genesis 22:6 - Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary (Old and New Testaments)

Genesis 22:6 - Charles Simeon's Horae Homileticae (Old and New Testaments)

Genesis 22:6 - Commentary Series on the Bible by Peter Pett

Genesis 22:6 - English Annotations on the Holy Bible by Matthew Poole

Genesis 22:6 - John Trapp's Complete Commentary (Old and New Testaments)

Genesis 22:6 - The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Genesis 22:6 - Whedon's Commentary on the Old and New Testaments

Charles Simeon's Horae Homileticae (Old and New Testaments)