Friday, July 12, 2024
HomeEditor PicksWhat Did Isaac Do In The Bible

What Did Isaac Do In The Bible

What Did Ishmael Do Wrong To Isaacgenesis : 9

Hallelujah! Look What God Can Do | What’s in the Bible?

What provoked Sarah to ask Abraham to send away Hagar and Ishmael in Gen 21:10? The text tells us only that Sarah saw Hagars son doing something . The term might mean laughing, since a few verses earlier Sarah has announced that everyone will laugh with her, sharing her joy .

But if the verb has anything to do with Sarahs reaction , it may suggest something more malevolent. Maybe instead of laughing with Sarah he was laughing at Isaac.

This was a feast for Isaacs weaning he was past the most physically dangerous period of infancy. If Isaac was weaned around age two, Ishmael would now be a young man of about sixteen. Because Paul, like most ancient Jewish interpreters, understood play negatively here , I will explore some of the negative possibilities.

The verb that can be translated as innocently as play in Genesis also has other meanings in less innocent contexts. It can mean to scorn or mock, or treat lightly historically some interpreters have inferred this, viewing this as ridicule opposing Gods promise . Perhaps Ishmael showed contempt as his mother once had for Sarah perhaps, given Sarahs strict response in 21:10, his disdain included Isaacs birthright .

Physical molestation is highly unlikely at a public feast . It is not impossible, however, that the adolescent Ishmael, still learning social propriety, could have taunted his just-weaned half-brother as sexually inferior or finally graduating from seeking his mothers breast.

The Binding Or Sacrifice Of Isaac

How Jews and Christians see differently

  • Total645
  • 31

Detail of the upper left scene on the marble sarcophagus of Junius Bassus . The story of how God tested Abraham by ordering him to sacrifice his son Isaac on Moriah is depicted. Abraham stands with the knife in hand, prepared to follow Gods command. Isaac kneels in front of the altar. A servant stands at right, and the ram, which Abraham will sacrifice in Isaacs place, is at left.

The Akedah , or binding of Isaac, is one of the most powerful narratives in the Hebrew Bible. For nearly 2,000 years, however, it has been read somewhat differently by Jews and Christians. It is even portrayed differently in the pictures they make. For most Christians, the Hebrew word akedah is unfamiliar more often than not, they will refer to the episode as the sacrifice of Isaac rather than the binding of Isaac.

Yet, as we shall see, at various times Christians and Jews were aware of each others interpretation of the story.

According to the narrative in Genesis 22:218, God, without any warning, commands Abraham to sacrifice his beloved son as a burnt offering. Father and son travel three days to Moriah, the place of sacrifice, where they build an altar. Abraham binds Isaac, lays him on the firewood and raises his knife to slay him. At the last moment, however, an angel calls out to Abraham to do no harm to the lad, and a ram caught in a nearby thicket is substitute for Isaac.

In the free eBookIn the free eBook

The Comfort Of The Cross

Most people arent disturbed by the outcome of Genesis 22. Instead, its the fact that God asked Abraham to sacrifice his son in the first place. How could Abraham agree? This seems more like parental neglect than faithful obedience.

But remember what weve covered so far. If Isaac represents Jesus in the story, then Abraham stands in for God.

From that angle, Abrahams willingness is comforting. This is the point that Paul makes when he draws language from Genesis 22 to ask, He who did not spare his own son, but gave him up for us all, will he not also with him graciously give us all things? .

On the grounds of this sacrifice, Paul pronounces one of the strongest messages of hope and consolation in all of Scripture,

For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord .

You May Like: Chronological Order Of Old Testament Books

The Timeline Of Isaacs Life

We dont know much about Isaacs character as a child, apart from the fact he was obedient to death when God puts Abrahams loyalties to the test . We also know that Isaac and Ishmael, his stepbrother, didnt get along too much.

And by that we mean, when Isaac was only eight days old, Ishmael mocked Isaac during his circumcision day . At that point, Isaac couldnt really have much of a personality yet because it hadnt developed by his first week here on earth.

Apart from that, we dont know a whole lot about Isaacs character throughout his childhood, but we get more of a glimpse when he, as an adult, finds the love of his life: Rebekah .

When he meets her, he still seems to be following the Lord and, of course, he falls head over heels in love.

Isaac lives a faithful life until he reaches his elderly years . Then he and Rebekah run into another issue: Playing favorites.

Abraham, before him, really didnt have the luxury of this. Sure, he had two sons: Isaac and Ishmael. But poor Ishmael was probably not considered to be a son in Abrahams eyes, or even if he was, to a much lesser degree because Abraham had not married Hagar and likely didnt consider any legitimacy in Ishmaels birth and birthright.

But Isaac and Rebekah had twins, and they each decided to pick a favorite. This pitted their sons, Jacob and Esau, against each other from the beginning.

The feud between the two sons leads to Jacob stealing Esaus birthright and blessing, after playing tricks to attain both.

A Isaac Repeats Abrahams Mistakes

Bible with Questions and Answers: History

1. Isaac responds to famine by going towards Egypt.

There was a famine in the land, besides the first famine that was in the days of Abraham. And Isaac went to Abimelech king of the Philistines, in Gerar.

a. There was a famine in the land: Though Isaac lived in the land God promised to his father Abraham and his descendants, it did not mean that life in the land would be without trouble or challenge. As there was a famine in the days of Abram , so there was a famine in Isaacs day.

b. Isaac went to Abimelech king of the Philistines, in Gerar: Isaac began to go south towards Egypt, as Abram did in famine . It seems that Isaac thought to travel along the famous road between Egypt and Canaan that went along the Mediterranean Sea.

i. Gerar was the same place where Isaacs father Abraham met another Abimelech, and almost compromised his wife . A similar story, similar both in the way man acted and the way God acted would play out with Abrahams son.

ii. The ruler of Gerar was called Abimelech as a title, not as a personal name. This is why both Abraham and Isaac dealt with Abimelech .

2. God proclaims the covenant to Isaac.

a. Do not go down to Egypt: As Isaac journeyed south, God warned him not to go any further. Isaac was to always live in the land that God told him to live in. The Son of Promise was always to live in the land of promise if Isaac did, God promised to be with him and to bless him.

· A land .

· A nation .

· A blessing .

You May Like: Troubled Hearts Bible Verses

B Isaac Digs The Wells

1. Isaac becomes wealthy, as Abraham was before him.

Then Isaac sowed in that land, and reaped in the same year a hundredfold and the LORD blessed him. The man began to prosper, and continued prospering until he became very prosperous for he had possessions of flocks and possessions of herds and a great number of servants. So the Philistines envied him.

a. Then Isaac sowed in that land: Prosperity came to Isaac as the blessing upon his hard work. He probably received enough of an inheritance from his father that he did not have to work, but worked hard nonetheless, and God blessed it and he became very prosperous.

b. So the Philistines envied him: Isaacs prosperity prompted the envy of his neighbors. This was another problem that came from living in close company to the Philistines of Gerar.

2. Isaac leaves Gerar.

Now the Philistines had stopped up all the wells which his fathers servants had dug in the days of Abraham his father, and they had filled them with earth. And Abimelech said to Isaac, Go away from us, for you are much mightier than we. Then Isaac departed from there and pitched his tent in the Valley of Gerar, and dwelt there.

a. Now the Philistines had stopped up all the wells: Wells were precious, and they were difficult and expensive to dig. It was a significant attack to destroy someones wells. This shows how severe the envy of the Philistines was towards Isaac.

3. Isaac digs the wells of Abraham.

4. Three wells and their names.

What Does The Bible Say About Isaac

Matthew 1:2: “Abraham was the father of Isaac, and Isaac the father of Jacob, and Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers.”

There’s not a whole lot notable about Isaac’s life, other than the fact that he comes from an important line. He appears to make many of his father’s same mistakes.

Genesis 17:15-19: “And God said to Abraham, As for Sarai your wife, you shall not call her name Sarai, but Sarah shall be her name. I will bless her, and moreover, I will give you a son by her. I will bless her, and she shall become nations kings of peoples shall come from her. Then Abraham fell on his face and laughed and said to himself, Shall a child be born to a man who is a hundred years old? Shall Sarah, who is ninety years old, bear a child? And Abraham said to God, Oh that Ishmael might live before you! God said, No, but Sarah your wife shall bear you a son, and you shall call his name Isaac. I will establish my covenant with him as an everlasting covenant for his offspring after him.”

Abraham meets God’s promise with doubt. He’d been waiting for so long for the miracle child. He even tried to force God’s hand and make his own offspring his own way.

Galatians 4:28: “Now you, brothers, like Isaac, are children of promise.”

Don’t Miss: What The Bible Says About Being Rich

How Is Isaac Connected To Christ

When Abraham submitted to Gods command, and Isaac followed his father to the sacrificial altar, it prophesied the greater sacrifice that would take place centuries later. A Father would ask His Son to die as a sacrifice, to pay the price for sin, and that Son would obediently follow as well.

Throughout the Bible, God showed what His plan for the salvation of humanity entailed. Sin needed to be paid, but no sinner could really bear the burden required to pay the price in full. Even with his great faith, Abraham could not pay the price for his sins, nor could Isaac. Only a perfect sacrifice would do.

Jesus Christ came to earth as the perfect lamb, who paid the substitutionary atonement for everyones sins. In other words, He substituted himself for all sinners, including Isaac. He was, in a metaphorical and literal sense, the ram in the thorns that God provided to die in Isaacs place. Jesus died for Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and all mankind.

C Gods Blessing Upon Isaac


1. God again confirms His promise to Isaac for Abrahams sake.

And the LORD appeared to him the same night and said, I am the God of your father Abraham do not fear, for I am with you. I will bless you and multiply your descendants for My servant Abrahams sake. So he built an altar there and called on the name of the LORD, and he pitched his tent there and there Isaacs servants dug a well.

a. The LORD appeared to him the same night: Isaacs father Abraham had many personal appearances of the LORD. This seems to be the first such experience for Isaac.

b. Do not fear, for I am with you: In the atmosphere of greater contention between Isaacs herdsmen and the Philistine herdsmen, Isaac had reason to be afraid. Here, God told Isaac to put any such fears away.

c. For My servant Abrahams sake: God kept His covenant with Isaac for Abrahams sake. After the same pattern, God keeps His covenant with us for Jesus sake.

d. So he built an altar there he pitched his tent there dug a well: Isaac walked in the same paths of his father Abraham. Altars and tents marked Abrahams life, demonstrating a life of worship and trust. Isaac lived that, calling on the name of the LORD, and enjoyed the additional blessing of another well.

2. The natives make peace with Isaac because the LORD is with him, just as happened with Abraham.

c. They departed from him in peace: After a feastmarking their covenant of peace, Abimelech departed from Isaac.

Don’t Miss: 365 Do Not Be Afraid Bible Verses

The Son Of Abraham Isaac

Abraham, Isaac, and JacobThen how about the only son of Abraham, Isaac? Who does Isaac represent? According to the bible, Isaac represent the Only Son of God, Jesus.

John 8:56 56 Your father Abraham rejoiced at the thought of seeing my day he saw it and was glad.

To understand this word of Christ, we have to know the promise God gave to Abraham.

Genesis 17:19 21 But my covenant I will establish with Isaac, whom Sarah will bear to you by this time next year. 22 When he had finished speaking with Abraham, God went up from him.

Finally, to fulfill the promise, when Abraham was 100 years old, a son was born to him and his wife Sarah. At the birth of Isaac, they rejoiced and named the son Isaac, which means laughter.

Genesis 21:5 5 Abraham was a hundred years old when his son Isaac was born to him. 6 Sarah said, God has brought me laughter, and everyone who hears about this will laugh with me.

In this story of the birth of Isaac, whose day did Abraham expect to see? It was the day of Isaac according to the promise of God. However, in the verse above, Jesus said what Abraham expected to see was His day, that is, the day of Jesus himself. Through this teaching of Christ, we can know the only son of Abraham was a prophecy to teach the coming of Jesus, the Only Son of God Himself. Therefore, Isaac, the son of Abraham actually represents Jesus, the Son of God and the Age of Son.

The Meaning Of Jacob Or Israel

Abraham, Isaac, and JacobThen who is Jacob spiritually? God divided his salvation work into three ages: the Age of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Since Abraham and Isaac represents Father and Son respectively, Jacob represents the Holy Spirit and the Age of the Holy Spirit. And the story of the 12 sons of Jacob means Gods people who are to be saved in the last days. Let us confirm this through the salvation work of God in the last days.

You May Like: Teaching The Bible To Preschoolers

His Older Brother Ishmael Represented A Potential Threat

After Isaac’s birth, Sarah suddenly came to perceive Ishmael, Isaac’s older half-brother by her servant Hagar, as a threat . Although we can only speculate about the reason why, Sarah’s actions proved nevertheless swift and decisive. She immediately demanded that Abraham cast both Hagar and Ishmael out of the tribe. Without the intervention of the Lord, the Egyptian handmaiden and her teenaged son would have died in the desert.

What spurred Sarah’s rapid response? In Genesis 21:9-10, it states, “Sarah saw … metzahek … She said to Abraham, ‘Get rid of that slave-woman and her child.'” Does the word metzahek have something to do with this cruel reaction? Among the most controversial interpretations of this passage is that metzahek refers to molestation. Why have some come to this conclusion? Because metzahek has numerous meanings in the Old Testament, including “laughing or playing with.” But in Genesis 26:8, the word describes sexual fondling between Isaac and his wife, Rebekah.

Who Does Abraham Represent

Abraham and Isaac  A Pattern of Things to Come

Abraham, Isaac, and JacobLet us first think of Abraham. Who is Abraham and what is the message of God in him? According to the bible, Abraham represent God the Father Jehovah and the Age of Father. In the parable of A Rich Man and Lazarus, Jesus teaches us the spiritual meaning of Abraham.

Luke 16:22 The time came when the beggar died and the angels carried him to Abrahams side. The rich man also died and was buried. 23 In Hades, where he was in torment, he looked up and saw Abraham far away, with Lazarus by his side. 24 So he called to him, Father Abraham, have pity on me and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, because I am in agony in this fire.

In this parable, the soul of Lazarus after his death was taken to Abraham. But actually, what does the bible says about the soul of a person after his death. The bible says it goes to God.

Don’t Miss: Pray Unceasingly Verse

Isaac Character Bible Study Background And Lessons


Meaning of name: It means laughter. This takes on two meaning when you consider the background of when Isaac was born. His mother, Sarah, laughed in mockery that she would be able to have a son at her old age. From this angle calling her son laughter could serve as a daily reminder that nothing is too difficult for God. Yet in Genesis 21:6-7 Sarah ascribes the reason for giving this name as the happiness which God had brought her by giving them a son.

Ancestry and family life: Isaac was the eleventh generation from Noah. He was descended from Shem. His grandfather was Terah, and his father Abraham. He had one older half-brother, Ishmael, and eventually several other younger half-brothers which Abraham had after Sarahs death.

When and where he lived: Isaac lived primarily in the land of Canaan. He lived as a sojourner moving around often, which was needed for feeding his large herds. He lived near the region which was controlled by the Philistines, showing that their influence dated back to well before the time of David. It was a time in the world when there were almost no followers of the one true God. Polytheism was the common practice of the day and there were many difference false gods and idols in the lands where he lived.

Isaac lived around 1900+ B.C.

Special traits: NA.



1. His birth


Most Popular