A Daily Genesis

Genesis 22:6b-9a

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[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†. [/COLOR]Gen 22:6b-7 . . He himself took the firestone and the knife; and the two walked off together. Then Isaac said to his father Abraham: Father! And he answered: Yes, my son. And he said: Here are the firestone and the wood; but where is the sheep for the burnt offering?[/B]

Oops! That's kind of like going out to a picnic and forgetting the hot dogs and hamburger buns.

The Tanakh's translation of the Hebrew word [I]'esh[/I] (aysh) as firestone was probably an educated guess. 'Esh just simply means fire, with no stone implied. A convenient way to transport fire in those days was with a portable oven; viz: a fire pot (cf. Gen 15:17). So rather than a stone, which implies striking sparks, they most likely just brought along the camp stove, which held a receptacle for live coals. Fire pots in those days were the equivalent of modern propane-fueled camping equipment.

Since Abraham was the patriarch, it was his prerogative, as well as his responsibility, to actually kill the burnt offering and set it afire; so he quite naturally took custody of the weapon and the coals; as Isaac no doubt fully expected him to.

The word for "sheep" is either [I]she[/I] (seh) or [I]sey[/I] (say) which means: a member of a flock, which can be either a sheep or a goat. Neither the age nor the gender mattered in this instance because Scripture up to this point in time had not yet specified age or gender for a burnt offering. Abraham could have used kids and lambs, or ewes, nannies, or rams; it made no difference. Actually, Abraham might have offered birds too. Noah did in chapter 8-- but there was something special about this instance that Isaac somehow knew required something quite a bit more substantial than a bird.

[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†.[/COLOR] Gen 22:8a . . And Abraham said: God will see to the sheep for His burnt offering, my son.[/B]

Little did Isaac know the sheep of that day was to be him. Ol' Abraham and his half truths are at it again.

[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†.[/COLOR] Gen 22:8b . . And the two of them walked on together.[/B]

This is now the second time Genesis says they walked together. Neither one led, nor brought up the rear, as in the case of so many husbands who leave their wives dragging along behind at the malls. Incidentally, the dialogue that took place between Isaac and his dad in verses 7 and 8 are the only recorded words they ever spoke to each other in the whole Bible.

Arguments from silence insist that if something isn't clearly stated in the Bible, then it's inferred from the silence that there was nothing to state. In other words: according to the logic of an argument from silence, verses 7 and 8 are the only words that Isaac and Abraham ever spoke to each other their entire lives: which of course is highly unlikely.
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[/COLOR][B][COLOR=#ff0000]†.[/COLOR] Gen 22:9a . .They arrived at the place of which God had told him.[/B]

When did that happen . . God telling him? Genesis doesn't say. Jewish tradition says the site had an aural glow which Abraham and Isaac were enabled to see from a distance.

Anyway it was now time to tell Isaac the real purpose of their pilgrimage.

I can almost hear Isaac ask; "Dad, if I'm dead, then how will God make of me a great nation whose numbers exceed the stars of heaven? You told me He promised you that". Yes; God did promise Abraham that in Gen 15:4-5, and Gen 17:18-21.

It is here where Isaac's great faith is revealed; but not so much his faith in God: rather, faith in his dad. Abraham's influence upon Isaac was astonishing; so much so that no doubt the lad believed right along with his dad that his death would only be temporary. Isaac was convinced that God would surely raise him from the dead in order to make good on His promises to Abraham.

That young man really had guts; and incredible trust in his dad too. I'll tell you what: those two men deserve our deepest admiration. What an incredible display of faith and courage; both on the part of Abraham and on the part of his son Isaac.

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