A Foreshadowing Sacrifice Series
Contributed by Boomer Phillips on Sep 15, 2021 (message contributor)
Summary: Good Friday: God knew ahead of time that He would – and must – sacrifice His one and only Son in order to atone for the sins that separate people from Him. In Genesis chapter 22, we see a glimpse into the future of God’s plan of salvation.
I’ve entitled our message this morning, “A Foreshadowing Sacrifice,” which indicates that we’re going to be looking at something foretold long before it happened. I wish to begin our message this morning by sharing something out of the book of Acts. In Acts 8:31-35, we find the account of Philip and the Ethiopian eunuch. The eunuch was reading out of Isaiah chapter 53, when he asked an important question; and the Bible shares the account as follows:
[The eunuch] asked Philip to come up and sit with him. The place in the Scripture which he read was this: “He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and as a lamb before its shearer is silent, so He opened not His mouth. In His humiliation His justice was taken away, and who will declare His generation? For His life is taken from the earth.” So the eunuch answered Philip and said, “I ask you, of whom does the prophet say this, of himself or of some other man?” Then Philip opened his mouth, and beginning at this Scripture, preached Jesus to him.
The eunuch asked Philip who this person was in Isaiah 53:7 who was led as a sheep, or lamb, to the slaughter; and Philip taught him that the “man” was “Jesus.” This morning, we will discuss the lamb being led as a sheep to the slaughter, with Genesis chapter 22 being our focal text; and a hidden analogy will be brought to light – one that foreshadows Jesus being led to the cross for the ultimate sacrifice.
The Lord began His work of salvation as soon as mankind committed the very first sin. The reason why is because the Lord desires a relationship with us. God knew ahead of time that He would – and “must” – sacrifice His one and only Son in order to atone for the sins that separate people from Him.
In Genesis chapter 22, we see a glimpse into the future of God’s plan of salvation. It contains the account of Abraham attempting to sacrifice his only son Isaac at God’s request; and many similarities to the passion story are contained within this account, and will be highlighted this morning. The ultimate purpose in having us look at Genesis chapter 22 is to understand how to enter into a relationship with the heavenly Father to be saved from our sins.
A Sacrifice Was Required (vv. 1-2)
1 Now it came to pass after these things that God tested Abraham, and said to him, “Abraham!” And he said, “Here I am.” 2 Then He said, “Take now your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you.”
Verses one through two speak about Abraham’s only begotten son. In Genesis 12:2, the Lord had made a promise to Abraham that He would bless him and make of him a great nation. But here, God asked him to sacrifice his only son; to give up the way through which a great nation would come from his lineage.
I want you to notice how verse two actually contains a parallel to the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, for it states that Abraham was to take up his “only” son for a sacrifice. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” So, like the heavenly Father who gave His one and only Son as a sacrifice for all mankind, we’re going to see that Abraham was willing to give up his one and only son.
I want to show you another possible parallel. In 2 Chronicles 3:1, we read this: “Now Solomon began to build the house of the Lord at Jerusalem on Mount Moriah.” Genesis 22:2 reveals that the mountain of Isaac’s potential sacrifice was located in the land of Moriah; therefore, this mountain was possibly located at Jerusalem, the very city in which Jesus was crucified. Mount Moriah is the temple mount, but since Moriah was described as a land, Isaac could have been taken to any mountain in that land, including Mount Moriah or even Golgotha, for all we know. But the possible parallel is intriguing!
Verse one says that the Lord tested Abraham, and He tested him for a reason. This test would result in Abraham demonstrating the way to having a relationship with God. Hebrews 11:17 says, “By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac, and he who had received the promises offered up his only begotten son.” Abraham was used to demonstrate how “faith” is the way to God. Ephesians 2:8-9 declares, “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.” Salvation comes by grace through faith; so faith plays a huge role in coming to know God, finding the forgiveness of our sins, and being reconciled unto Him.