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Isaac is a Type
Bible study on resurrection.

When Abraham offered Isaac, and God stayed his hand from slaying the boy, the Bible tells us Abraham received him back as a type (Heb. 11:19).

Isaac's Resurrection
From Abraham's perspective, he received Isaac back as from the dead when God stopped Him from slaying him (Heb. 11:19).

  • "By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac, and he who had received the promises was offering up his only begotten son; it was he to whom it was said, 'In Isaac your descendants shall be called.' He considered that God is able to raise people even from the dead, from which he also received him back as a type (Heb. 11:17-19).

Commenting on this, Barnes says:

  • "The obvious interpretation is, that he then received him by his being raised up from the altar as if from the dead. He was to Abraham dead. He had given him up. He had prepared to offer him as a sacrifice. He lay there before him as one who was dead. From that altar he was raised up by direct Divine interposition, as if he was raised from the grave, and this was to Abraham a figure or a representation of the resurrection."

And Alford says:

  • Abraham "received him back, risen from that death which he had undergone in, under, the figure of the ram."

Isaac's Resurrection: Type of Christ's Resurrection
The similarities between Isaac and Jesus are striking in respect to their death and resurrection, especially allegorically.

Both Jesus and Isaac were Sons of promise.

  • Isaac was Abraham's son, through whom God promised to make a great nation, and bless all the nations of the earth (Gen. 18:18).
  • Jesus is the promised One through whom God blesses all the nations (Gal. 3:16).

Both Jesus and Isaac are responsible for descendants of Abraham.

  • Abraham's physical descendants come through Isaac, and his spiritual descendants come through Jesus (Gal. 3:26-29).
  • Abraham's physical descendants are born by physical birth, and his spiritual descendants are born by spiritual birth through baptism (Jn. 3:3-5; Acts 2:38; Tit. 3:5).

Both Jesus and Isaac were their Fathers' only Son.

  • Abraham's sacrifice of his only son, foreshadowed God's sacrifice of His only Son (Heb. 11:17; Jn. 3:16).

Both Jesus and Isaac were sacrificed in Moriah.

  • God commanded Abraham to sacrifice Isaac on a mountain in the land of Moriah (Gen. 22:2, 14).
  • Jesus was sacrificed in Moriah (2 Ch. 3:1).
  • Moriah is the place God provides the sacrifice for our sins (Gen. 22:14). It's the place Jesus was sacrificed to atone for man's sins.

Both Jesus and Isaac carried wood for their sacrifice.

  • Abraham laid the wood on Isaac, who carried it up the mountain (Gen. 22:6).
  • Jesus bore His cross which was made of wood (Jn. 19:17-18).
  • Both Isaac and Jesus did work necessary to become a sacrifice to God.

Both Jesus and Isaac were obedient to their Fathers to the point of death.

  • Isaac obeyed his father, who bound him and laid him on the alter (Gen. 22:6-9).
  • Jesus obeyed His father and was obedient to the point of crucifixion, through which He learned obedience ( Phil. 2:5-8; Heb. 5:7-8).

Both Jesus and Isaac were raised up by the power of God.

  • When God stopped Abraham from slaying his son, Abraham considered that God raised him from the dead (Heb. 11:19).
  • God raised Jesus from the dead (Rom. 6:4).

Jesus tells us that Abraham saw His day -- the day Jesus left heaven and came to earth (Jn. 8:56). Certainly Abraham also saw the day Jesus was sacrificed on the cross, and the day God received Him back from the dead.

Seeing God sacrifice His Son, and then receive Him back, must have been incredible for Abraham, especially while enjoying eternal bliss with the son God gave back to him, Isaac.

Isaac's Resurrection: Type of Christian's Resurrection
Since Isaac foreshadowed the death and resurrection of Christ, He also foreshadowed our death and resurrection.

As Isaac was dead when laying upon alter, so we are dead in the water of baptism.

  • We die to sin in the water of baptism (Rom. 6:2, 7).
  • We are baptized into Christ's death (Rom. 6:3).
  • We are united with Christ in death when we're baptized (Rom. 6:5).
  • We are crucified with Christ where we're baptized (Rom. 6:6).
    • A ram was substituted for Isaac, and died for him. Jesus was substituted for us, and died for us.
    • Jesus bore our sins on the cross, becoming sin on our behalf, so we can become the righteousness of God in Him (1 Pet. 2:24; 2 Cor. 5:21).

As Isaac was raised from the dead when he came up from the alter, we are raised from the dead when we come up from the water of baptism.

  • We are buried with Christ, and raised up with Him when we're baptized (Col. 2:12).
  • God raises us up with Christ, and seats us with Him in the heavenly places when we're baptized (Eph. 2:6).

The love and mercy God extended to Abraham and Isaac is extended to us when we obey Jesus, and we're baptized -- we die with Him and God raises us up, seating us with Him in the heavenly places.