Summary: Old Testament picture of the New Testament cross.
Preludes to the Cross
GOD PROVIDED FOR HIMSELF A LAMB
TEXT: 1Now it came to pass after these things that God tested Abraham, and said to him, “Abraham!” And he said, “Here I am.” 2Then 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.” 3So Abraham rose early in the morning and saddled his donkey, and took two of his young men with him, and Isaac his son; and he split the wood for the burnt offering, and arose and went to the place of which God had told him. 4Then on the third day Abraham lifted his eyes and saw the place afar off. 5And Abraham said to his young men, “Stay here with the donkey; the lad and I will go yonder and worship, and we will come back to you.” 6So Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering and laid it on Isaac his son; and he took the fire in his hand, and a knife, and the two of them went together. 7But Isaac spoke to Abraham his father and said, “My father!” And he said, “Here I am, my son.” Then he said, “Look, the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?” 8And Abraham said, “My son, God will provide for Himself the lamb for a burnt offering.” So the two of them went together. 9Then they came to the place of which God had told him. And Abraham built an altar there and placed the wood in order; and he bound Isaac his son and laid him on the altar, upon the wood. 10And Abraham stretched out his hand and took the knife to slay his son. 11But the Angel of the Lord called to him from heaven and said, “Abraham, Abraham!” So he said, “Here I am.” 12And He said, “Do not lay your hand on the lad, or do anything to him; for now I know that you fear God, since you have not withheld your son, your only son, from Me.” 13Then 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. 14And 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.”
PROPOSITION: To demonstrate that the cross was God’s plan all along.
In this story we see …
I. THE LAMB GOD HAS PROVIDED
7But Isaac spoke to Abraham his father and said, “My father!” And he said, “Here I am, my son.” Then he said, “Look, the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?” 8And Abraham said, “My son, God will provide for Himself the lamb for a burnt offering.” So the two of them went together.
Revelation 13:8 All who dwell on the earth will worship him, whose names have not been written in the Book of Life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.
Hebrews 10:4-10 For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats could take away sins. 5 Therefore, when He came into the world, He said: "Sacrifice and offering You did not desire, But a body You have prepared for Me.
John 1:29 29The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!
In this story we see not only the lamb of God but also …
II. THE TREE THAT PREPARED THE LAMB FOR SACRIFICE
13Then 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.
Application: That ram, entangled in the branches of that tree, was already as good as dead – all Abraham had to do was accept the ram as a substitution for his son. In this we see the plan of God concerning Christ.
Romans 5:6-8 6For when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. 7For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die. 8But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Application: Isaac was bound, tied up, and helpless to save himself as his father stood over him with knife in hand. He could do nothing but rely upon the mercy and love of his father. In the same way, we are bound and helpless concerning our own salvation. …