He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all–
Behold, I have come– In the volume of the book it is written of Me–
The key to understanding the Bible is profoundly simple… it is realizing the Scriptures are always pointing to Jesus. It has been skillfully stated that “the Old Testament is Christ concealed, and the New Testament is Christ revealed.” That adage will do you very well in your study of the Word. Our study today will be from Hebrews 11:17-19. Those three short verses which takes us back to the incredible picture of sacrifice which occurs surrounding Abraham and Isaac on Mount Moriah in Genesis 22. Charles Spurgeon comments on the Genesis story– “If the Messiah be anywhere symbolized in the Old Testament, He is certainly to be seen upon Mount Moriah, where the beloved Isaac, willingly bound and laid upon the altar, is a lively foreshadowing of the Well-beloved of heaven yielding His life as a ransom.” He goes on– “The gospel of Moriah, which is but another name for Calvary.” Another of the Christ proclaiming preachers from time past, F.B. Meyer wrote of the same Genesis text– “So long as men live in the world, they will turn to this story with unwaning interest. There is only one scene in history by which it is surpassed; that where the Great Father gave his Isaac to a death from which there was no deliverance.”
The narrative of Genesis 22 is a rich vein drawing us towards Jesus. In it we read that Abraham carried the fire and knife while Isaac specifically and solely shouldered the wood. What a great picture of Jesus carrying His cross. A tremendous detail of prophetic type… truly “in the volume of the book it is written of Me.”
You will also note “the two of them went together.” The one who was to raise the knife and the other for sacrifice walked in peace to the altar. There is no hint of turning back. It was the father who bound Isaac. Christ was bound by His Father. John 19:11 reveals that Jesus spoke to Pilate: “You could have no power at all against Me unless it had been given to you from above.” It was not Judas, not the religious power players, not the mob, neither Pilate nor Rome who bound Jesus. It was His Father who bound and “gave His only begotten Son.”
We observe no struggle between Abraham and his son. Interestingly Isaac was very likely a strong man in his late twenties. Certainly, he had the power to overpower his father and flee the circumstance. Yet we read not a hint of frustration, argument, nor even a murmur. In this wonderful parallel we recall the words of Jesus to the Pharisees in John 10:17– “I lay down My life that I may take it again. No one takes it from Me, but I lay it down Myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again.” Laid down on the Cross because He loves us!