6-Week Series: Against All Odds


Summary: As we compare the birth and lives of Jesus and Isaac, we can note an amazing pattern that speaks of God’s determination to intervene in human history – and his desire to intervene in your life!

Jesus and the Isaac Pattern


1. Christmas season makes us think of shopping. That brings to mind an older couple who are always holding hands. When I asked him why he always holds his wife’s had, he said, “When I let go, she shops.”

2. Someone asked a group of Jewish merchants what they do on Christmas Day to celebrate. They said they go to their shops, count the cash register, and sing, “What a Friend We Have in Jesus.”

3. In actuality, the birth of Jesus is rooted in the Hebrew Scriptures and the Jewish culture. The birth of Isaac to Sarah and Abraham is a case in point.

Main Idea: As we compare the birth and lives of Jesus and Isaac, we can note an amazing pattern that speaks of God’s determination to intervene in human history – and his desire to intervene in your life!

I. The BIRTH of Isaac and Jesus Are Parallel

A. Both were sons of PROMISE

1. Even though Ishmael was born first, Isaac was the son of promise

Genesis 18:10, “ The Lord said, “I will surely return to you about this time next year, and Sarah your wife shall have a son.” And Sarah was listening at the tent door behind him.”

2. Jesus is the promised Messiah born of a virgin

Isaiah 7:14, “ Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.”

Matthew 2:15 quotes Hosea 11:1, “…and remained there until the death of Herod. This was to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet, “Out of Egypt I called my son.”

B. Both CONCEIVED miraculously

Genesis 18:11, “Now Abraham and Sarah were old, advanced in years. The way of women had ceased to be with Sarah.”

Matthew 1:18, “Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit.”

1. REJUVENATION of Abraham

2. Special FORMATION of Jesus


Illustration: Imagine a symphony where a man who clashes the symbols has no idea where to come in, so he just clangs him when he wishes….that’s how things seem…

Genesis 21:2, “And Sarah conceived and bore Abraham a son in his old age at the time of which God had spoken to him.”

Galatians 4:4 “But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law…”

D. Both NAMED before birth

A name is important: Luke would have been Nathan…

Genesis 17:19, “God said, ‘No, but Sarah your wife shall bear you a son, and you shall call his name Isaac. I will establish my covenant with him as an everlasting covenant for his offspring after him.’”

Matthews 1:21, “She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” [most important Christmas verse]

In Hebrew, Jesus name, Yeshua, and salvation, Yeshuah, are the same

Isaac, or Yitzak, means laughter (absurd birth)

Application: Is Yeshua your yeshuah? Is Jesus your salvation? I talked to people who say all that matters is that we keep the 10 commandments?

II. The SACRIFICE of Isaac and Jesus Are Parallel

A. Isaac was ALMOST sacrificed

Genesis 22:2, “ He said, ‘Take 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.’”

1. Isaac called “only son.” Had God forgotten Ishmael? unique/only begotten

2. Remember fire drills at school? Purpose: to be prepared in the event….

3. The word “high place” understood as “peak.” Although Abraham knew God, came to know him in a deeper way through this peak experience. Hagar’s well, where she water when near death w/Ishmael, was called a low place.

4. The angel of the Lord (the Son) stops the sacrifice; Ram instead

B. Jesus was ACTUALLY sacrificed

Philippians 2:8, “And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.”

God the Son, who appeared as the Angel of the Lord in OT, became a man; this time, instead of stopping the sacrifice and replacing himself with a lamb became the lamb!

C. Both loved their WIVES

Genesis 24:67a, “Then Isaac brought her into the tent of Sarah his mother and took Rebekah, and she became his wife, and he loved her.”

Ephesians 5:25, “Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her…” [church: collective term for all believers]

D. Both were RESURRECTED from the dead

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