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.”
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.”
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.
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.
Note that the “angel of the Lord” commended Abraham because “thou hast not withheld thy son, thine only son, from me.” It is evident here that this “angel of the Lord” is claiming to be none other than the Lord Himself.
“God will provide himself a lamb,” Abraham had told Isaac. And now God did exactly that, except that it was a ram, rather than a lamb. The complete fulfillment must await the true Lamb, the Lamb of God. The ram was offered up on the altar as a burn offering in substitution for his son, thus adding the teaching of substitutionary sacrifice to the type. — Morris, page 381.
Wechsler’s take (previous study) is that Isaac himself was the lamb. If that’s true, then Morris’ take (above) doesn’t work.
Abraham named the location Jehovah-jireh, which means “the Lord will provide,” or, alternatively, “the Lord will appear.” — Morris, page 382.
Since the “mount of the Lord” in Scripture is the Temple Mount (cf. Isaiah 2:2)—i.e., Mount Moriah (cf. 2 Chronicles 3:1), the very mount on which the event of this chapter takes place!—and since nothing material is actually provided for the worshiper who goes there (he brings his own sacrifice), the only thing that can “be provided” (note the passive voice of the verb) is the forgiveness/atonement that the worshiper who comes in faith is seeking. What a vivid “shadow” of God the Father’s “provision” of the one and only sacrifice that could ever take away sin: the sacrifice of His Son, Jesus Christ, the seed of Abraham, who offered His blood on the heavenly altar—”one sacrifice for sins for all time” (see Hebrews 9:23-26; 10:12). — Wechsler, page 214.
To emphasize as strongly as possible that His word would be accomplished, God made an oath to Abraham, swearing by His own name. For when God made a promise to Abraham, because He could swear by no one greater, He swore by Himself, saying, “Surely blessing I will bless you, and multiplying I will multiply you.” And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise. For men indeed swear by the greater, and an oath for confirmation is for them an end of all dispute. Thus God, determining to show more abundantly to the heirs of promise the immutability of His counsel, confirmed it by an oath, that by two immutable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie, we might have strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold of the hope set before us (Hebrews 6:13-18). — Morris, pages 382-383.
Jesus said: “he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me” (Matthew 10:37). God told Abraham: “Because thou hast done this thing, and hast not withheld thy son, thine only son,” therefore He would: (1) bless Abraham himself abundantly; (2) make his descendants as innumerable as the stars of heaven or as the sand by the sea; (3) cause his descendants to prevail against their enemies; (4) cause all other nations of the earth likewise to be blessed in Abraham’s seed. All of these blessings were promised to Abraham because “thou has obeyed my voice.” This is the first occurrence of the word “obey” in the Bible, and it stresses that obedience belongs to God first of all, and that obedience to God results in rich blessing. — Morris, page 383.
As to the first use of “obey,” see the post on Genesis 2:15.
Three times in this promise, God used the word “seed.” At that time, Abraham had only one seed, Isaac, but that seed was to be multiplied and to bring blessing to all. Nevertheless, the fact that God stressed the word in the singular, rather than plural, was significant in that it would be through the Abrahamic nation that the world’s Savior would one day come. “Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to they seed, which is Christ” (Galatians 3:16). And, surely, rich blessings have indeed come through Christ. “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ” (Ephesians 1:3). — Morris, page 383.
[Verses 20-24] represent a sort of parenthesis in the narrative, showing that … Abraham’s brother Nahor still lived back in Mesopotamia, possibly in the city known as Nahor. … Abraham often must have wondered where he could find a wife for his son. If Isaac was to be the father of the great nation as promised, the choice of a proper wife was all-important. … Nahor had married his niece, a girl named Milcah, and he also had a concubine named Reumah. Milcah had had eight sons and Reumah four. Isaac, however, having been born so late in Abraham’s life, was more the age of Nahor’s grandchildren than of his own cousins. The grandchildren of Nahor may have been very numerous, but only two are mentioned: Aram, son of Kemuel, and Rebekah, the daughter of Nahor’s youngest son, Bethuel. The reason Rebekah is mentioned in the narrative (which is part of “the generation of Isaac,” it will be remembered) is of course that she was later to be the one chosen as Isaac’s wife. — Morris, pages 384-385.
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