Abraham and Isaac
1 Some time passed. God wanted to see how faithful Abraham was. God said to him, ‘Abraham!’ Abraham replied, ‘Here I am.’ 2 God said ‘Take your son. Take your only son Isaac, whom you love. Go to the place of Moriah. Sacrifice your son there, as a burnt offering. Do this on a mountain. I will tell you which mountain.’
3 Abraham got up early the next morning. He put a blanket on his donkey. He took 2 servants, and his son Isaac. He cut wood for the fire for the burnt offering. He started to go to the place that God had told him. He took the wood with him. 4 On the 3rd day, Abraham looked up. He saw the place. It was not too far away. 5 Abraham spoke to his servants. He said ‘Stay here with the donkey. The boy and I will go over there. We will worship God. Then we will come back to you.’
22:5Abraham shows that he has faith in God. He says ‘we will come back to you’. He does not say ‘I will come back to you’.
6 Abraham took the wood for the burnt offering. He gave it to Isaac to carry. Abraham carried the fire and the knife. And the 2 of them went on together. 7 Isaac spoke to Abraham. He said ‘Father?’ Abraham replied ‘Yes my son?’ Isaac said, ‘The fire and the wood are here. But where is the lamb, the lamb for the burnt offering?’
22:7A lamb is a young sheep. In the Old Testament people killed lambs as a sacrifice to God.
8 Abraham replied, ‘God will give himself the lamb for the burnt offering, my son.’ And the 2 of them went on together.
9 They came to the place that God told them. Abraham built an altar. He put the wood on it. He tied his son Isaac. And he put him on top of the wood on the altar. 10 Then Abraham took the knife in his hand to kill his son.
11 But the angel of the LORD called out to him. He said ‘Abraham! Abraham!’ Abraham replied ‘Here I am.’ 12 The angel said, ‘Do not put a hand on the boy. Do not do anything to him. Now I know that you fear God. I know this because you have not kept your son from me. And he is your only son.’
22:12To fear God means to have faith in him. And it means to do whatever God says. Abraham believed that God would keep his promise. God's promise was that Abraham would have many descendants. Abraham believed that God would not let Isaac die for ever. He believed that God had the power to bring Isaac back from death. (See Hebrews 11:17-19.)
22:12These verses remind us that Jesus died for us. Jesus died for us, as the lamb died to save Isaac.
22:12Jesus was the ‘lamb of God’ (John 1:29). He was sacrificed for us. He died instead of us.
13 Abraham looked up. He saw a ram, caught in a bush. He took the ram. Abraham sacrificed it as a burnt offering. He sacrificed the ram instead of his son.
22:13A ram is a male sheep.
14 Abraham called that place ‘The LORD will provide.’ And it is still said ‘On the mountain of the LORD it will be provided’.
22:14Provide means to give someone what they need.
22:14So Abraham called that place ‘The LORD will give me what I need.’ And it is still said ‘On the mountain of the LORD, he will give us what we need.’
15 The angel of the LORD called to Abraham again. He called from heaven. 16 The angel said, ‘I tell you this, says the LORD. You did not keep your son from me. And he was your only son. 17 Because you have done this, I will bless you. I will make your descendants as many as the stars. They will be as many as the stars that are in the sky. They will be as many as the pieces of sand by the sea. Your descendants will take the cities of their enemies. 18 I will bless everyone on the earth through your descendants. I will do this because you obeyed me.’ 19 Abraham returned to his servants. Together they left for Beersheba.
20 Some time passed. Someone told Abraham ‘Milcah is also a mother. She has given birth to sons through your brother Nahor.’ 21 They are: Uz, the first born, his brother Buz, Kemuel, (who is the father of Aram), 22 Kesed, Hazo, Pildash, Jidlaph and Bethuel. 23 Bethuel became the father of Rebekah. Milcah gave birth to these 8 sons. Nahor was the father of these 8 sons. Nahor was Abraham's brother. 24 Nahor had a slave wife. Her name was Reumah. She also had sons. They were Tebah, Gaham, Tahash and Maacah.