The Lord will provide.

Genesis 22 ESV

The Sacrifice of Isaac

1After these things God tested Abraham and said to him, “Abraham!” And he said, “Here I am.” 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.” So Abraham rose early in the morning, saddled his donkey, and took two of his young men with him, and his son Isaac. And he cut the wood for the burnt offering and arose and went to the place of which God had told him. On the third day Abraham lifted up his eyes and saw the place from afar. Then Abraham said to his young men, “Stay here with the donkey; I and the boy will go over there and worship and come again to you.” And Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering and laid it on Isaac his son. And he took in his hand the fire and the knife. So they went both of them together. And Isaac said to his father Abraham, “My father!” And he said, “Here I am, my son.” He said, “Behold, the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?” Abraham said, “God will provide for himself the lamb for a burnt offering, my son.” So they went both of them together.

When they came to the place of which God had told him, Abraham built the altar there and laid the wood in order and bound Isaac his son and laid him on the altar, on top of the wood. 10 Then Abraham reached out his hand and took the knife to slaughter his son. 11 But the angel of the Lord called to him from heaven and said, “Abraham, Abraham!” And he said, “Here I am.” 12 He said, “Do not lay your hand on the boy or do anything to him, for now I know that you fear God, seeing you have not withheld your son, your only son, from me.” 13 And Abraham lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, behind him was a ram, caught in a thicket by his horns. And Abraham went and took the ram and offered it up as a burnt offering instead of his son. 14 So Abraham called the name of that place, “The Lord will provide”; as it is said to this day, “On the mount of the Lord it shall be provided.”

15 And the angel of the Lord called to Abraham a second time from heaven 16 and said, “By myself I have sworn, declares the Lord, because you have done this and have not withheld your son, your only son, 17 I will surely bless you, and I will surely multiply your offspring as the stars of heaven and as the sand that is on the seashore. And your offspring shall possess the gate of his enemies, 18 and in your offspring shall all the nations of the earth be blessed, because you have obeyed my voice.”19 So Abraham returned to his young men, and they arose and went together to Beersheba. And Abraham lived at Beersheba.

This has been, in the (almost exactly) 5 years since I gave my life fully to Christ for the first time, one of my favorite stories in the whole Bible. I love that the Old Testament concealed is the New Testament revealed, and almost none more so than this story you read above. God promised a son, and that son would open up a completely different future, not only for one family, but for the whole world. God promised this twice, once with Abraham and Issac – how He would use Israel, Issac’s son Jacob and his sons, to shape the world, and once more with Mary and Jesus – how He would use anyone and everyone that followed Jesus to shape eternity.

Matthew Henry is one of my favorite Bible commentators, and here’s what he has to say in regards to Genesis 22:11-14. It can get a bit wordy, but read it all and carefully, and I promise it will be fruitful. (emphasis below added)

Hitherto this story has been very melancholy, and seemed to hasten towards a most tragical period; but here the sky suddenly clears up, the sun breaks out, and a bright and pleasant scene opens. The same hand that had wounded and cast down here heals and lifts up; for, though he cause grief, he will have compassion. The angel of the Lord, that is, God himself, the eternal Word, the angel of the covenant, who was to be the great Redeemer and comforter, he interposed, and gave a happy issue to this trial.

I. Isaac is rescued, v. 11, 12. The command to offer him was intended only for trial, and it appearing, upon trial, that Abraham did indeed love God better than he loved Isaac, the end of the command was answered; and therefore the order is countermanded, without any reflection at all upon the unchangeableness of the divine counsels: Lay not thy hand upon the lad. Note, 1. Our creature-comforts are most likely to be continued to us when we are most willing to resign them up to God’s will. 2. God’s time to help and relieve his people is when they are brought to the greatest extremity. The more imminent the danger is, and the nearer to be put in execution, the more wonderful and the more welcome is the deliverance.

II. Abraham is not only approved, but applauded. He obtains an honourable testimony that he is righteous: Now know I that thou fearest God. God knew it before, but now Abraham had given a most memorable evidence of it. He needed do no more; what he had done was sufficient to prove the religious regard he had to God and his authority. Note, 1. When God, by his providence, hinders the performance of our sincere intentions in his services, he graciously accepts the will for the deed, and the honest endeavour, though it come short of finishing. 2. The best evidence of our fearing God is our being willing of serve and honour him with that which is dearest to us, and to part with all to him or for him.

III. Another sacrifice is provided instead of Isaac, v. 13. Now that the altar was built, and the wood laid in order, it was necessary that something should be offered. For, 1. God must be acknowledged with thankfulness for the deliverance of Isaac; and the sooner the better, when here is an altar ready. 2. Abraham’s words must be made good: God will provide himself a lamb. God will not disappoint those expectations of his people which are of his own raising; but according to their faith it is to them. Thou shalt decree a thing, and it shall be established. 3. Reference must be had to the promised Messiah, the blessed seed. (1.) Christ was sacrificed in our stead, as this ram instead of Isaac, and his death was our discharge. “Here am I (said he,) let these go their way.” (2.) Though that blessed seed was lately promised, and now typified by Isaac, yet the offering of him up should be suspended till the latter end of the world: and in the mean time the sacrifice of beasts should be accepted, as this ram was, as a pledge of that expiation which should one day be made by that great sacrifice. And it is observable that the temple, the place of sacrifice, was afterwards built upon this mount Moriah (2 Chr. 3:1); and mount Calvary, where Christ was crucified, was not far off.

IV. A new name is given to the place, to the honour of God, and for the encouragement of all believers, to the end of the world, cheerfully to trust in God in the way of obedience: Jehovah-jireh, The Lord will provide (v. 14), probably alluding to what he had said (v. 8), God will provide himself a lamb. I was not owing to any contrivance of Abraham, nor was it in answer to his prayer, though he was a distinguished intercessor; but it was purely the Lord’s doing. Let it be recorded for the generations to come, 1. That the Lord will see; he will always have his eye upon his people in their straits and distresses, that he may come in with seasonable succour in the critical juncture. 2. That he will be seen, be seen in the mount, in the greatest perplexities of his people. He will not only manifest, but magnify, his wisdom, power, and goodness, in their deliverance. Where God sees and provides, he should be seen and praised.

People, is that not good? He is always watching, always seeing, always with us, ever present Immanuel.

El-Roi, God who Sees Me. He sees you. He is watching out for you. When trials comes, He weeps with you. When we have much to be joyous about, He celebrates with you. Let’s ask Him to open our eyes to the things unseen that He is at work in around us every day. “Where God sees and provides, He should be seen and praised”, yes, yes, yes.

From The Message paraphrase of Genesis 22:14: “Abraham named that place God-Yireh (God-Sees-to-It). That’s where we get the saying, “On the mountain of God, he sees to it.”

A lot of time my life feels complicated, or at least the world seems dark and often without hope. But He promises to see to it. He is a promise keeper, in Christ all of His promises are yes and amen. He has never broken a promise yet, and He never will.

“He who calls you is faithful; he will surely do it.” – 1 Thessalonians 5:24

Everything He calls us to is possible in Him – what He initiates, He sustains, He fulfills.

“I know that you can do all things, and that no purpose of yours can be thwarted.” – Job 42:2

Not a single thing stands in His way. Nothing keeps Him from providing for His children. Nothing keeps Him from being Jehoveh-Jireh. Even if we lack healing from sickness, freedom from oppression or literal chains, we don’t know know where our next meal is coming from – He does. He cares intimately for every single one of us and is always active, never busy – always working to bring about His purposes on this earth. His timing might seem slow but is perfect – 2 Peter 3:9.

I have always loved the names of God, especially Jehoveh-Jireh. He has always provided for me in so many ways. I have been dreaming of getting a tattoo for years, and have always loved the thought of getting that in Hebrew on my arm. Over Easter, when I was hanging out with a friend’s family, Devin told me about Razzouk Tattoo, a place in Israel that has been tattooing Christian pilgrims since 1300. She and her husband Peter got tattoos there, and I thought maybe maybe maybe this is it?

IMG_1701.jpegThen I was speaking that next week to Tara-Leigh, my friend mentor boss, and she told me that the tattoo shop’s  location in the Old City of Jerusalem is on Mount Moriah – where the almost sacrifice of Issac took place. I was locked in at that point, made an appointment for our last full day in Jerusalem, and I was so excited.

My friends Anna (yes, that friend Anna), Allison, and Karen went with me – the first two for moral support, Karen for her own tattoo! It was my first tattoo, and on April 28, 2018, I got Jehoveh-Jireh in Hebrew on the inside of my left arm, near my elbow. As of June 2018, it’s fully healed and looking beautiful, and I love it so much. It is a conversation starter (love chances to point back to the gospel!!), very easily concealable if I don’t want it to be noticed, and most importantly, a constant reminder that God always provides for me.

God provides. God provides a perfect sacrifice. God provides a perfect sacrifice in His Son Jesus Christ who loves me and gave Himself for me, paying for my sins and crossing the chasm for our holy reconciliation. God provides for my needs and my wants, above what I can ask for an imagine. God provides a place for me in heaven, a room in my Father’s house, and an eternity in His presence. How could I ask for more? He has provided me every good thing.

Praised be the name, Jehoveh-Jireh, The Lord will Provide.


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