Moriah – Devotion and Submission

"Then on the third day Abraham lifted up his eyes, and saw the place afar off. And Abraham said unto his young men, Abide ye here with the ass; and I and the lad will go yonder and worship, and come again to you. 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." (Genesis 22:4-10)

There is no indication in the text of Genesis 22 that Abraham revealed anything ot Isaac's involvement in what he was doing until Isaac himself raised the question.

There were three days journey in which Isaac's submission to his father was that of a dutiful son. There are many instances in the patriarchal records that provide evidence for the fact that paternal authority was absolute. This enabled a strict adherence of the family to those principles that governed its behaviour and safeguarded its future. Sons willingly remained subject to their fathers until their death. Isaac's dealings with Jacob and Esau and those of Jacob with his sons all witness to this. So the sub­mission and devotion of Isaac at this point is filial, that is, as that of a beloved son.

The gospel records afford us much evidence of such filial devotion and subjection of the Lord Jesus to His Father. The apostle John often reports the delightful intimacies of the Father and the Son. In the Lord's upper room prayer this unity of purpose and mind is illustrated again and again. It is encapsulated in His words, "But that the world may know that I love the Father; and as the Father gave commandment, even so I do" (John 14:31). The letter to the Hebrews reminds us, "though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered" (Heb. 5:8). This is the experiential obedience of the Son in subjection.

Isaac had little clue as to what would happen when they came to the summit of Moriah. There, Abraham could withhold the reality no more. Whatever his feelings might have been, there is no whisper of the slightest objection on the part of Isaac. He had such total confidence in Abraham’s knowledge of God that he willingly yields to be the sacrifice.

How complete was the subjection of Christ despite being fully aware of all that was to befall Him. “Thou didst make me hope … I was cast upon thee …Thou art my God” (Psalm 22:9-10).

His total trust is seen in such passages as Psalm 40:6-17 and  lsaiah 50:4-9. No wonder Genesis 22 records twice: "And they went both of them together."



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