Posts Tagged ‘Rebekah’

And Abraham said, “My son, God will provide for Himself the lamb for a burnt offering.” So the two of them went together…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. 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.” Genesis 22:8, 13-14
Jehovah Jireh = The LORD Will Provide

As I have shared before, I use both the New King James and the King James versions of the Bible for my study. The NKJV is easier to read, but occasionally the KJV provides a better translation and although I have quoted the NKJV above, today’s Bible passage in the KJV correctly omits the word ‘for‘ and simply reads, “God will provide Himself.”  That might not seem like a big deal initially, but may you come to realize the huge significance it has both symbolically and doctrinally.

What Does God Provide?

Fact: this Isaac incident is a symbolic, albeit real, depiction of what God the Father and Jesus the Son will later do on Calvary. It’s born out in the text above; God declares that He will provide a surrogate for Isaac in the form of a lamb, but then a ram is produced.

Did God make a mistake or was He making a statement?

Since we know that God cannot a blunder make, we know that latter to be true. God is saying in no uncertain terms, ‘I will not provide a lamb, but the Lamb in the form of Myself.’

Make no mistake about it; the ram is not a lamb on purpose.

The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! John 1:29

The Lamb Becomes a Worm

The Lamb Becomes a Worm,’ is the first teaching I ever heard Pastor Jon Courson teach and every time I have heard it since it never fails to give me a spiritual shiver. Most of us acquainted with Jesus and the Bible know that when Christ calls from the cross, “My God, why have you forsaken Me,” He is in fact quoting Psalm 22, which speaks prophetically of Himself. If you did not realize that, read through Psalm 22 with that understanding.

Now consider this verse…

But I am a worm, and no man; A reproach of men, and despised by the people. Psalm 22:6

What on Earth Does That Mean?

The Hebrew word for worm is ‘towla’ and while it is literally translated to mean worm, it also means scarlet. There is in reality a towla worm and back in the day these worms were ground-up to produce the color scarlet, hence the double meaning. What is incredibly interesting about this worm is that as part of the reproduction process, it affixes itself to a tree where it ultimately dies. In due time, the young then feed on the flesh. When the experience is over, all that remains is a crimson stain on the wood. Almost miraculously, in a few days the scarlet spot dries up and flakes-off like snow. I am not surprised that God employed this seemingly bizarre imagery to illustrate what His Son would ultimately do for us on the cross.

Come now, and let us reason together, ” Says the Lord, “Though your sins are like scarlet, They shall be as white as snow; Though they are red like crimson, They shall be as wool. Isaiah 1:18

What Happens to Isaac?

So Abraham returned to his young men, and they rose and went together to Beersheba; and Abraham dwelt at Beersheba. Genesis 22:19

It is quite clear that Isaac’s life is spared, but what happens to him in the Bible text? One moment God steps in and saves his life and the next we see Abraham walking off with the two servants, with no mention of Isaac. Amazingly, God is providing yet another symbol. The next Genesis passage bears witness to that as we learn of Nahor’s descendants. At first the genealogy seems out-of-place, but then we recognize a familiar name in verse 23…

And Bethuel begot Rebekah.

“So what,” you say?

  1. Like Jesus, Isaac rises from his symbolic death on the third day (he and his dad journeyed three days to reach this place).
  2. Like Jesus, Isaac is mysteriously absent after the resurrection. We know Jesus ascended into Heaven to, among other things, prepare a place for His Bride. Where does Isaac go?
  3. Like Jesus, Issac returns for his bride (Rebekah). She is as much a picture of the church as Isaac is a picture of Jesus.

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When Esau heard the words of his father, he cried with an exceedingly great and bitter cry, and said to his father, “Bless me–me also, O my father!” Genesis 27:34God’s Will Be Done

When we examine the account of Isaac blessing his sons Jacob and Esau, we no doubt take notice of the devious and deceitful behavior being exercised by those concerned. It really boils down to the futility associated with trying to help God with things He really does not need our help with. While the world screams ‘efficiency’ God commands effectiveness and regardless of how disconcerting treachery is, God’s plan will ultimately be accomplished. Worldly efforts serve only to delay the inevitable and typically garner undesired consequences for the one who sins.

A Model Blessing

Despite all the deceit, Isaac does display for us a wonderful example of what it means to offer blessings. Sadly it is a lost art. For example, the practice of blessing our children has almost vanished through the ages and as a result our children often look to be blessed elsewhere. Oh that we should resume the role as children blessers, for this practice is indeed a blessing to our Heavenly Father.

A Blessing Defined

If we break a blessing down into its basic parts we learn that a superior blessing achieves two things: it proclaims who a person is and reveals a direction for that person to go. Isaac’s blessings for both his children accomplish these things. When we fail to bless those under our care the result is often horrific. Our children, in search of affirmation of any type, end up discovering surrogate donors who are quick to provide that which is perverse.

Pronouncing the Blessing

Then his father Isaac said to him, “Come near now and kiss me, ” Genesis 27:26

A blessing is obviously a personal thing, but it is also a tender and meaningful event. In Isaac’s illustration we see this personal touch employed. Studies demonstrate that for children who do not receive this demonstrative touch at home will seek to find it in inappropriate places later one. In addition, let us not deny our children the touch of Jesus or the touch of discipline. Again, what cannot be found in the home will be searched for elsewhere.

Surely, the smell of my son Is like the smell of a field Which the Lord has blessed. Genesis 27:27

Proverbs 3:27 declares that we are not to, “withhold good from those to whom it is due, When it is in the power of your hand to do so.” In Isaac’s proclamation to his son he gives recognition, essentially giving worth to the person he believed his son to be. Lord, help us to identify the good and worthy things our children do and bless them accordingly.

Therefore may God give you Of the dew of heaven, Of the fatness of the earth, And plenty of grain and wine. Let peoples serve you, And nations bow down to you. Be master over your brethren, And let your mother’s sons bow down to you. Cursed be everyone who curses you, And blessed be those who bless you!” Genesis 27:28-29

When it is within our power to do so we should be revelators, for God has blessed us with both a measure of discernment and a rear-view mirror. As we employ both we can effectively plot a course and determine a likely destination for our kids. Then as we perceive their direction, we can then either encourage them in their walk or redirect them to the superior (albeit narrow) path.

Do not buy-the-lie; it has never been wrong for us to telegraph our godly expectations for our children. I am reminded of Noah, who when building the ark incorporated separate rooms for his children, despite the fact he had not been blessed with any yet. By his actions Noah was essentially saying, “My children will be onboard with the program.”

“Indeed I have made him your master, and all his brethren I have given to him as servants; with grain and wine I have sustained him. What shall I do now for you, my son?” Genesis 27:37

In Isaac’s words (to Esau) we see a continued commitment by him to see the blessing through. The notion here is that blessings inspired and imposed by God are irrevocable. God has a plan for our children (and us) and as their earthly guardians we must do whatever we are able to see that plan through to fruition, not operating in our flesh, but by Divine guidance. When we stumble (and we will) we will trust God to lift us up.

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