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Bible Commentaries

Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures

Genesis 22

Verses 1-19

God Tests Abraham’s Faith Genesis 22:1-19 gives the account of God testing Abraham’s faith by telling him to offer Isaac upon a burnt altar. Why did God have to test Abraham in this manner? The reason is that it was necessary for Abraham to also believe that this promise must be ultimately fulfilled through the means of a death and a resurrection. Abraham had believed that God would give him a son through Sarah and would make him a father of a multitude. Abraham now believed that God would raise Isaac from the dead in order to fulfill His promise. In addition, God had to know that Abraham was not looking to Isaac as the one who would fulfill God’s promises, but to God Himself as the covenant keeper. Abraham had to place his love and devotion to God above what he cherished the most, which was his son of promise. God is a jealous God and will not allow anything on this earth to be placed ahead of Him. God also wanted Abraham to feel what He felt when He offered His Only Begotten Son on Calvary two thousand years later.

The Development of Abraham’s Faith - Abraham had a promise from God that he would have a son by Sarai his wife. However, when we read the Scriptures in the book of Genesis where God gave Abraham this promise, we see that he did not immediately believe the promise from God (Genesis 17:17-18).

Genesis 17:17-18, “Then Abraham fell upon his face, and laughed, and said in his heart, Shall a child be born unto him that is an hundred years old? and shall Sarah, that is ninety years old, bear? And Abraham said unto God, O that Ishmael might live before thee!”

Instead of agreeing with God's promise, Abraham laughed and suggested that God use Ishmael to fulfill His promise. However, many years later, by the time God commanded Abraham to sacrifice his son, he was fully persuaded that God was able to use Isaac to make him a father of nations. We see Abraham's faith when he told his son Isaac that God Himself was able to provide a sacrifice, because he knew that God would raise Isaac from the dead, if need be, in order to fulfill His promise (Genesis 22:8).

Genesis 22:8, “And Abraham said, My son, God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt offering: so they went both of them together.”

Hebrews 11:17-19, “By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac: and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son, Of whom it was said, That in Isaac shall thy seed be called: Accounting that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead; from whence also he received him in a figure.”

It was on Mount Moriah that Abraham finally died to himself. He had initially chosen Eleazer as his heir to fulfill God promise. He then conceived a son through Hagar, his handmaid, in an effort to have a son of promise. When Isaac was born, God comes to Abraham and requires his son to be sacrificed upon the altar. Abraham's desires were laid on that altar and he chose to follow God's will for his life. After this event, we never see Abraham making a poor decision.

See a reference to the events in this story in Hebrews 11:17-19.

Hebrews 11:17-19, “By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac: and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son, Of whom it was said, That in Isaac shall thy seed be called: Accounting that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead; from whence also he received him in a figure.”

If we want to be used by God, we must all come to a type of Mount Moriah in our lives, a place where we die to our own will and plan, and we yield ourselves to God's will for our lives. For example, we see that Jacob died to himself at Peniel. After this night of struggle, Jacob never made selfish decisions any more. At that place he also died to his own will and yielded to God's plan for his life.

God Also Tests His Children The Scriptures give a number of accounts of God testing His children. For example, God tested Israel in wilderness.

Exodus 15:25 - at the water of Marah

Exodus 16:4 By giving them manna from heaven - for obedience.

Exodus 20:20 By giving His appearance upon Mt. Sinai for fear of God.

Deuteronomy 4:34, “Or hath God assayed to go and take him a nation from the midst of another nation, by temptations , by signs, and by wonders, and by war, and by a mighty hand, and by a stretched out arm, and by great terrors, according to all that the LORD your God did for you in Egypt before your eyes?”

Why does God test us?

Deuteronomy 8:2 To humble, to test, to know what was in thine heart, whether thou would test keep his commandments or no.

Deuteronomy 8:16 - By giving them manna - To humble thee, to test thee, to do thee good at thy latter end.

Deuteronomy 13:3, “Thou shalt not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams: for the LORD your God proveth you, to know whether ye love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul.”

Judges 2:20-23 - Heathen nations were left in Israel to test Israel, to see whether or not they would serve God.

Judges 3:1-4 - To test them whether they would obey God or not.

There are other examples in the Scriptures:

2 Chronicles 32:31 - God tested Hezekiah

Psalms 26:2, “Examine me, O LORD, and prove me; try my reins and my heart.”

Psalms 105:17-22, “The word of the Lord tried him (i.e. Joseph)”

Psalms 139:23, “Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.”

Proverbs 17:3, “The fining pot is for silver, and the furnace for gold: but the LORD trieth the hearts.”

Zechariah 13:9, “And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, The LORD is my God.”

Malachi 3:2, “But who may abide the day of his coming? and who shall stand when he appeareth? for he is like a refiner's fire, and like fullers' soap: And he shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver: and he shall purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer unto the LORD an offering in righteousness.”

1 Peter 1:7, “That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:”

It is important to note that God does not tempt us towards evil; rather, He only tests our faith:

James 1:13, “Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man: But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.”

Note these words from Frances J. Roberts about how God tests His children in order to develop their character:

“In the multitude of testings, thou shalt learn courage. It matters not the price ye pay, but at any cost ye must obtain strength of character and the fortitude to endure. I would build thy resources until ye be able to carry unusually heavy loads and withstand intense pressures. Ye shall thus become an ambassador of the Kingdom of Heaven to whom I can assign critical missions, being confident that ye are equipped to fulfill them. It shall be in vain if ye anticipate resting in a comfortable place. Lo, Zion is already filled with those who are at ease. No, ye shall find thyself put in a place of training and discipline, so that when the moments of crisis come ye shall not become faint-hearted, and ye shall not be the victim of unwonted fear. Trust My instruction in all of this, as ye have in different types of past experiences. I am faithful and loving, and I am doing this in order that ye may meet the future days, and not be found wanting.” [211]

[211] Frances J. Roberts, Come Away My Beloved (Ojai, California: King’s Farspan, Inc., 1973), 128.

Abraham as a Type and Figure of Jesus’ Death and Resurrection - How much this story in Genesis 22:1-19 of Abraham offering up his only son compares to God the Father sending Jesus to Calvary. It is a type and figure of Jesus’ death and resurrection

1. Isaac carried wood (Genesis 22:6). Jesus carried the wooden cross:

1 Peter 2:24, “Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree , that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.”

2. Abraham carried fire and knife (Genesis 22:6).

3. Isaac willingly gave himself, without a struggle (Genesis 22:7-10). Likewise, Jesus willingly offered his life allowed the Father’s will to be done, as Isaac allowed his father, Abraham’s, will to be done:

Matthew 26:42, “He went away again the second time, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if this cup may not pass away from me, except I drink it, thy will be done.”

Genesis 22:1 And it came to pass after these things, that God did tempt Abraham, and said unto him, Abraham: and he said, Behold, here I am.

Genesis 22:1 Word Study on “tempt” Strong says the Hebrew word “tempt” ( נָסָה ) (H5254) means, “to test.” The Hebrew noun ( מַסָּה ) (H4531), meaning, “a testing,” is a derivative of this Hebrew verb. This is first time that this Hebrew verb ( נָסָה ) is used in the Old Testament.

Comments God would not have tested Abraham without their being a close relationship between them. Note verses about Abraham's relationship with God:

2 Chronicles 20:7, “Art not thou our God, who didst drive out the inhabitants of this land before thy people Israel, and gavest it to the seed of Abraham thy friend for ever?”

Nehemiah 9:7, “The Lord the God, who didst choose Abram, and broughtest him forth out of Ur of the Chaldees, and gives him the name of Abraham, and found his heart faithful before thee and madest a covenant with him to give the land.”

Isaiah 41:8, “But thou, Israel, art my servant, Jacob whom I have chosen, the seed of Abraham my friend .”

Isaiah 51:2, “Look into Abraham your father, and unto Sarah that bare you. For I called him alone, and blessed him , and increased him.”

Genesis 22:2 And he said, Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.

Genesis 22:2 Word Study on “Moriah” Strong says the Hebrew word “Moriah” ( מוֹרִיָּה ) (H4179) literally means, “seen of Jah,” and comes from two Hebrew words, the primitive root ( רָאָה ) (H7200), which means, “to see,” and from ( יָהּ ) (H3050), which is a contraction of ( יְהוָֹה ) (H3068), meaning “YHWH, or Jehovah.” Thus, it carries the meaning, “the place where YHWH is seen,” or “the place where YHWH sees.”

The Hebrew name “Moriah” is used only two times in the entire Old Testament. The other use is found in 2 Chronicles 3:1, when God instructed Solomon to build the Temple on this same mount.

2 Chronicles 3:1, “Then Solomon began to build the house of the LORD at Jerusalem in mount Moriah , where the LORD appeared unto David his father, in the place that David had prepared in the threshingfloor of Ornan the Jebusite.”

Genesis 22:2 Comments - The Lord seemed to quicken to me John 12:24 while reading Genesis 22:2. When Abraham offered his son Isaac to the Lord, he was sowing his greatest offering unto the Lord. A seed must first die in the ground in order to bear fruit. Isaac was Abraham’s seed. In order for Abraham’s seed (i.e. Isaac) to bring forth much fruit, the seed had to die first.

John 12:24, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit.”

Genesis 22:2 Comments - The Scriptures record a number of accounts in which a person offers his child as a sacrifice upon the altar. God commanded Abraham to offer his son Isaac as a burnt offering (Genesis 22:2). Jephthah offered his only child as a burnt offering. (Judges 11:39). The king of Moab offered his firstborn son as a burnt offering (2 Kings 3:27). Such forms of pagan worship have been practiced from antiquity.

Genesis 22:2, “And he said, Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.”

Judges 11:39, “And it came to pass at the end of two months, that she returned unto her father, who did with her according to his vow which he had vowed: and she knew no man. And it was a custom in Israel,”

2 Kings 3:27, “Then he took his eldest son that should have reigned in his stead, and offered him for a burnt offering upon the wall. And there was great indignation against Israel: and they departed from him, and returned to their own land.”

The offering of one’s firstborn was not a new concept to Abraham. The culture from which he departed practiced this as a form of idolatry and witchcraft. This wicked practiced is recorded time and again in the Old Testament among the wicked nations who inhabited the Middle East.

Genesis 22:2 Comments - It is important to note that the Lord would not ask us to do something that He Himself is not willing to do, for in the fullness of time, God did send His only begotten Son to Calvary as a sacrifice for the sins of mankind.

Genesis 22:3 And Abraham rose up early in the morning, and saddled his ass, and took two of his young men with him, and Isaac his son, and clave the wood for the burnt offering, and rose up, and went unto the place of which God had told him.

Genesis 22:4 Then on the third day Abraham lifted up his eyes, and saw the place afar off.

Genesis 22:4 Comments - Abraham’s three-day journey parallels Jesus' three-day experience in the tomb.

Genesis 22:4 Comments - Abraham journeyed from Beersheba (Genesis 21:33-34) to Jerusalem (2 Chronicles 3:1) in three days.

Genesis 21:33, “And Abraham planted a grove in Beersheba , and called there on the name of the LORD, the everlasting God. And Abraham sojourned in the Philistines' land many days.”

2 Chronicles 3:1, “Then Solomon began to build the house of the LORD at Jerusalem in mount Moriah , where the LORD appeared unto David his father, in the place that David had prepared in the threshingfloor of Ornan the Jebusite.”

Jeffery Arthurs notes how the flow of time in this narrative story hurries through three days of travel “like images flashing from a train.” [212] This story then slows down and describes the details one of these days when Abraham reached his destination for testing. Arthurs explains that the details of the narrative that follow this verse are used to create suspense for the reader. It indicates that the plot is reaching a climax, and the reader anxiously anticipates the outcome of this suspense.

[212] Jeffery D. Arthurs, Preaching With Variety (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Kregel Publications, 2007), 81.

Genesis 22:5 And Abraham said unto his young men, Abide ye here with the ass; and I and the lad will go yonder and worship, and come again to you.

Genesis 22:5 “come again to you” - Comments - The Hebrew says, “we will come again to you,” meaning both Abraham and Isaac would return, and not just Abraham, alone. Abraham was saying that even if God had to raise Isaac from the dead, God's promises would be fulfilled in Isaac (Hebrews 11:17-19).

Hebrews 11:17-19, “By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac: and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son, Of whom it was said, That in Isaac shall thy seed be called: Accounting that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead ; from whence also he received him in a figure.”

Genesis 22:6 And Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering, and laid it upon Isaac his son; and he took the fire in his hand, and a knife; and they went both of them together.

Genesis 22:6 Comments - Abraham carried the dangerous materials, i.e., the fire and the knife, while Isaac took wood. Note that aged Abraham let his young, strong son bear the heavy load of wood. Note also that Isaac carrying the wood parallels the fact that Jesus carried the cross, or wood, on his shoulders to His bodily sacrifice also.

Genesis 22:7 And Isaac spake unto Abraham his father, and said, My father: and he said, Here am I, my son. And he said, Behold the fire and the wood: but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?

Genesis 22:8 And Abraham said, My son, God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt offering: so they went both of them together.

Genesis 22:8 “God will provide himself a lamb” Comments - The ram that God provided for Abraham is figurative of the fact that God will someday provide His Son as the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.

Genesis 22:9 And they came to the place which God had told him of; and Abraham built an altar there, and laid the wood in order, and bound Isaac his son, and laid him on the altar upon the wood.

Genesis 22:10 And Abraham stretched forth his hand, and took the knife to slay his son.

Genesis 22:11 And the angel of the LORD called unto him out of heaven, and said, Abraham, Abraham: and he said, Here am I.

Genesis 22:12 And he said, Lay not thine hand upon the lad, neither do thou any thing unto him: for now I know that thou fearest God, seeing thou hast not withheld thy son, thine only son from me.

Genesis 22:13 And Abraham lifted up his eyes, and looked, and behold behind him a ram caught in a thicket by his horns: and Abraham went and took the ram, and offered him up for a burnt offering in the stead of his son.

Genesis 22:13 “offered him up for a burnt offering in the stead of his son” - Comments - Jesus also died in our stead for the sons of men.

Genesis 22:13 Comments - It is important to understand that God provided His servant Abraham with a seed, not with a provision. God always provides a seed, and man is to sow this seed in order to receive his harvest (2 Corinthians 9:10).

2 Corinthians 9:10, “Now he that ministereth seed to the sower both minister bread for your food, and multiply your seed sown, and increase the fruits of your righteousness;)”

Genesis 22:14 And Abraham called the name of that place Jehovahjireh: as it is said to this day, In the mount of the LORD it shall be seen.

Genesis 22:14 “In the mount of the Lord it shall be seen” - Comments - Note the phrase, “ shall be,” not “ may be,” meaning God's promises are sure.

Genesis 22:15 And the angel of the LORD called unto Abraham out of heaven the second time,

Genesis 22:16 And said, By myself have I sworn, saith the LORD, for because thou hast done this thing, and hast not withheld thy son, thine only son:

Genesis 22:16 “By myself have I sworn” Comments - When men swear, they do so by someone greater. But God could swear by no one greater than himself.

Hebrews 6:13, “For when God made promise to Abraham, because he could swear by no greater, he sware by himself,”

Genesis 22:17 That in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore; and thy seed shall possess the gate of his enemies;

Genesis 22:17 “That in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply” Comments - We easily recognize the phrase “that in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply” as a Hebrew way of giving emphasis to a statement. The Lord is stating that He will bless Abraham very much and multiply him exceedingly. A number of modern translations bring out this emphasis by rewording it in the way we would say it in today’s English.

NIV, “ I will surely bless you and make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as the sand on the seashore. Your descendants will take possession of the cities of their enemies,”

RSV, “ I will indeed bless you , and I will multiply your descendants as the stars of heaven and as the sand which is on the seashore. And your descendants shall possess the gate of their enemies.”

As a missionary in East Africa, and becoming familiar with a local language that shares the primitive grammatical structures that the Hebrew language holds, I have seen some similar ways in bringing out such emphasis. The Luganda language, the national language in Uganda, says, “mpola, mpola,” which means, “slowly, slowly.” But in English, we would say, “very slowy.” They would also say, “kyimpi, kyimpi,” which we would translate as “very short.”

These types of constructions are found in the more simple and less inflecting and developed languages. With the lack of adjectives and adverts, it necessitates such double constructions in order to accomplish the same emphasis. In contrast, the highly inflected and developed Greek language uses a different approach to create emphasis.

Genesis 22:17 “as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore” Comments - In the heavens, there is nothing more numerous to the human eye than the number of stars in the sky. On the earth, there is nothing that represents a large number than the sand on the seashore. The stars are in the heavens, and the sand is on the earth. Therefore, the stars represent the spiritual seed of Abraham and the sand represents the earthly, natural seed of Abraham. The children of Israel formed the nation of Israel, and the heavenly, spiritual seed is made up of the Church of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Genesis 22:16-17 Old Testament Quotes in the New Testament - Genesis 22:16-17 is quoted in Hebrews 6:13-14.

Hebrews 6:13-15, “For when God made promise to Abraham, because he could swear by no greater, he sware by himself, Saying, Surely blessing I will bless thee, and multiplying I will multiply thee. And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise.”

Genesis 22:18 And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice.

Genesis 22:18 Old Testament Quotes in the New Testament - Note this quoted in the New Testament.

Acts 3:25, “Ye are the children of the prophets, and of the covenant which God made with our fathers, saying unto Abraham, And in thy seed shall all the kindreds of the earth be blessed .”

Genesis 22:19 So Abraham returned unto his young men, and they rose up and went together to Beersheba; and Abraham dwelt at Beersheba.

Verses 1-24

The Calling of the Patriarchs of Israel We can find two major divisions within the book of Genesis that reveal God’s foreknowledge in designing a plan of redemption to establish a righteous people upon earth. Paul reveals this four-fold plan in Romans 8:29-30: predestination, calling, justification, and glorification.

Romans 8:29-30, “For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.”

The book of Genesis will reflect the first two phase of redemption, which are predestination and calling. We find in the first division in Genesis 1:1 to Genesis 2:3 emphasizing predestination. The Creation Story gives us God’s predestined plan for mankind, which is to be fruitful, multiply, and fill the earth with righteous offspring. The second major division is found in Genesis 2:4 to Genesis 50:25, which gives us ten genealogies, in which God calls men of righteousness to play a role in His divine plan of redemption.

The foundational theme of Genesis 2:4 to Genesis 11:26 is the divine calling for mankind to be fruitful and multiply, which commission was given to Adam prior to the Flood (Genesis 1:28-29), and to Noah after the Flood (Genesis 9:1). The establishment of the seventy nations prepares us for the calling out of Abraham and his sons, which story fills the rest of the book of Genesis. Thus, God’s calling through His divine foreknowledge (Genesis 11:27 to Genesis 50:26) will focus the calling of Abraham and his descendants to establish the nation of Israel. God will call the patriarchs to fulfill the original purpose and intent of creation, which is to multiply into a righteous nation, for which mankind was originally predestined to fulfill.

The generations of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob take up a large portion of the book of Genesis. These genealogies have a common structure in that they all begin with God revealing Himself to a patriarch and giving him a divine commission, and they close with God fulfilling His promise to each of them because of their faith in His promise. God promised Abraham a son through Sarah his wife that would multiply into a nation, and Abraham demonstrated his faith in this promise on Mount Moriah. God promised Isaac two sons, with the younger receiving the first-born blessing, and this was fulfilled when Jacob deceived his father and received the blessing above his brother Esau. Jacob’s son Joseph received two dreams of ruling over his brothers, and Jacob testified to his faith in this promise by following Joseph into the land of Egypt. Thus, these three genealogies emphasize God’s call and commission to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and their response of faith in seeing God fulfill His word to each of them.

1. The Generations of Terah (& Abraham) Genesis 11:27 to Genesis 25:11

2. The Generations Ishmael Genesis 25:12-18

3. The Generations of Isaac Genesis 25:19 to Genesis 35:29

4. The Generations of Esau Genesis 36:1-43

5. The Generations of Jacob Genesis 37:1 to Genesis 50:26

The Origin of the Nation of Israel After Genesis 1:1 to Genesis 9:29 takes us through the origin of the heavens and the earth as we know them today, and Genesis 10:1 to Genesis 11:26 explains the origin of the seventy nations (Genesis 10:1 to Genesis 11:26), we see that the rest of the book of Genesis focuses upon the origin of the nation of Israel (Genesis 11:27 to Genesis 50:26). Thus, each of these major divisions serves as a foundation upon which the next division is built.

Paul the apostle reveals the four phases of God the Father’s plan of redemption for mankind through His divine foreknowledge of all things in Romans 8:29-30, “For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.” Predestination - Genesis 1:1 to Genesis 11:26 emphasizes the theme of God the Father’s predestined purpose of the earth, which was to serve mankind, and of mankind, which was to be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth with righteousness. Calling - Genesis 11:27 to Genesis 50:26 will place emphasis upon the second phase of God’s plan of redemption for mankind, which is His divine calling to fulfill His purpose of multiplying and filling the earth with righteousness. (The additional two phases of Justification and Glorification will unfold within the rest of the books of the Pentateuch.) This second section of Genesis can be divided into five genealogies. The three genealogies of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob begin with a divine calling to a patriarch. The two shorter genealogies of Ishmael and Esau are given simply because they inherit a measure of divine blessings as descendants of Abraham, but they will not play a central role in God’s redemptive plan for mankind. God will implement phase two of His divine plan of redemption by calling one man named Abraham to depart unto the Promised Land (Genesis 12:1-3), and this calling was fulfilled by the patriarch. Isaac’s calling can also be found at the beginning of his genealogy, where God commands him to dwell in the Promised Land (Genesis 26:1-6), and this calling was fulfilled by the patriarch Isaac. Jacob’s calling was fulfilled as he bore twelve sons and took them into Egypt where they multiplied into a nation. The opening passage of Jacob’s genealogy reveals that his destiny would be fulfilled through the dream of his son Joseph (Genesis 37:1-11), which took place in the land of Egypt. Perhaps Jacob did not receive such a clear calling as Abraham and Isaac because his early life was one of deceit, rather than of righteousness obedience to God; so the Lord had to reveal His plan for Jacob through his righteous son Joseph. In a similar way, God spoke to righteous kings of Israel, and was silent to those who did not serve Him. Thus, the three patriarchs of Israel received a divine calling, which they fulfilled in order for the nation of Israel to become established in the land of Egypt. Perhaps the reason the Lord sent the Jacob and the seventy souls into Egypt to multiply rather than leaving them in the Promised Land is that the Israelites would have intermarried the cultic nations around them and failed to produce a nation of righteousness. God’s ways are always perfect.

1. The Generations of Terah (& Abraham) Genesis 11:27 to Genesis 25:11

2. The Generations Ishmael Genesis 25:12-18

3. The Generations of Isaac Genesis 25:19 to Genesis 35:29

4. The Generations of Esau Genesis 36:1-43

5. The Generations of Jacob Genesis 37:1 to Genesis 50:26

Divine Miracles It is important to note that up until now the Scriptures record no miracles in the lives of men. Thus, we will observe that divine miracles begin with Abraham and the children of Israel. Testimonies reveal today that the Jews are still recipients of God’s miracles as He divinely intervenes in this nation to fulfill His purpose and plan for His people. Yes, God is working miracles through His New Testament Church, but miracles had their beginning with the nation of Israel.

Verses 20-24

The Genealogy of Nahor - Nahor had twelve sons, eight by his wife Milcah, and four by his concubine Reumah. Note that Ishmael, Abraham’s son, also had twelve sons also, which are listed in the genealogy of Genesis 25:12-16. Nahor’s genealogy sets the backdrop for Genesis 24:1-67, when Isaac takes Rebekah as his wife. But why is this passage placed here at the end of chapter 22? Perhaps the reason is because Genesis 22:1-19 is figurative of the death, burial and resurrection of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, while the story of Isaac taking Rebekah in Genesis 22:20-24 is figurative of the birth of the church, Jesus’ bride, which comes immediately after Jesus' resurrection.

Genesis 22:20 And it came to pass after these things, that it was told Abraham, saying, Behold, Milcah, she hath also born children unto thy brother Nahor;

Genesis 22:20 Word Study on “Milcah” Gesenius tells us that by Chaldean usage the Hebrew name “Milkah” ( מִלְכָּה ) (H4435) means “counsel.” Strong says it means, “queen.” PTW tells us it means, “counsel.”

Comments - Milcha is daughter of Haran and sister to Lot and Iscah. She married her uncle named Nahor and bare him eight children. She is first mentioned in Genesis 11:29 in the genealogy of Terah. She is mentioned a second time in Scripture Genesis 22:20-24, where Nahor’s genealogy is given. Her name is mentioned on a third occasion in the chapter where Isaac takes Rebekah as his bride (Genesis 24:15; Genesis 24:24; Genesis 24:47). She is mentioned no more in the Scriptures.

Genesis 11:29, “And Abram and Nahor took them wives: the name of Abram's wife was Sarai; and the name of Nahor's wife, Milcah, the daughter of Haran, the father of Milcah, and the father of Iscah.”

Genesis 24:15, “And it came to pass, before he had done speaking, that, behold, Rebekah came out, who was born to Bethuel, son of Milcah, the wife of Nahor, Abraham's brother, with her pitcher upon her shoulder.”

Genesis 22:20 Comments Keil-Delitzsch use the phrase “she hath also born children” to tie the passage in Genesis 22:20-24 back to Genesis 11:29, where Nahor and Milcah are first mentioned as relatives of Abraham. [213] This brother of Abraham will play an important role in God’s redemptive plan for mankind by providing a grandchild named Rebekah to marry Abraham’s son Isaac. Thus, Nahor’s genealogy plays a smaller, but important role in Israel’s ancestry. The author of Genesis has just written the narrative material of Isaac’s birth and Abraham’s offering on Mount Moriah. Now, he is preparing the stage for the birth of his wife Rebekah.

[213] C. F. Keil and F. Delitzsch, Pentateuch, vol. 1, in Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament, trans. James Martin, in P.C. Study Bible, v. 3.1 [CD-ROM] (Seattle, WA: Biblesoft Inc., 1993-2000), comments on Genesis 22:20.

Genesis 22:21 Huz his firstborn, and Buz his brother, and Kemuel the father of Aram,

Genesis 22:21 Word Study on “Huz” Strong says the Hebrew name “Huz,” or ‘Uz,” as it is more commonly used in the Scriptures, “oots” ( עוּץ ) (H5780) means, “consultation.” PTW says it means, “counsel, firmness.” Although there are three or four individuals by this name in the Scriptures, this first-born son of Nahor is not mentioned again.

Genesis 22:21 Word Study on “Buz” Gesenius and PTW tell us the Hebrew name “Buz” “Buwz” ( בּוּז ) (H938) means “contempt.” Buz was very possibly the ancestor of Elihu, the son of Barachel the Buzite, who is the fourth speaker in the book of Job (Job 32:2). He may also be the ancestor of a people that dwelt in the region of the Arabian Desert (Jeremiah 25:22-23).

Job 32:2, “Then was kindled the wrath of Elihu the son of Barachel the Buzite, of the kindred of Ram: against Job was his wrath kindled, because he justified himself rather than God.”

Jeremiah 25:22-23, “And all the kings of Tyrus, and all the kings of Zidon, and the kings of the isles which are beyond the sea, Dedan, and Tema, and Buz, and all that are in the utmost corners,”

Genesis 22:21 Word Study on “Kemuel” Gesenius says the Hebrew name “Kemuel” “Qâmuw’el” ( קְמוּאֵל ) (H7055) means, “congregation of God”. Strong says it means, “raised of God.” PTW tells us the name means “God stands,” or “God’s mound.” Although there are three individual by the name “Kemuel,” Genesis 22:21 is the only mention of this person.

Genesis 22:21 Word Study on “Aram” Strong says the Hebrew name “Aram” ( אֲרָם ) (H758) means, “raised of God.” Although this name is shared by three individuals in the Scriptures, this grandson of Nahor is not mentioned again in Scriptures. However, we are familiar with the son of Shem by the name of Aram, which country named after him is Syria, used frequently in the Scriptures.

Genesis 22:22 And Chesed, and Hazo, and Pildash, and Jidlaph, and Bethuel.

Genesis 22:22 Word Study on “Chesed” Gesenius and Strong say the Hebrew name “Chesed” ( כֶּשֶׂד ) (H3777) is of uncertain origin. BDB says it means, “increase.” PTW tells us the name means “gain.” Gesenius and the ISBE suggest that the Casdim, or Chaldeans (an altered English version of the word derived from the Assyrian and Greek words), are descended from this individual. [214] In the book of Job the Chaldeans ( כַּשְׂדִּים ) invaded Uz and took Job’s camels.

[214] John Richard Sampey, “Chesed,” in International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, ed. James Orr (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., c1915, 1939), in The Sword Project, v. 1.5.11 [CD-ROM] (Temple, AZ: CrossWire Bible Society, 1990-2008).

Job 1:17, “While he was yet speaking, there came also another, and said, The Chaldeans made out three bands, and fell upon the camels, and have carried them away, yea, and slain the servants with the edge of the sword; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee.”

Genesis 22:23 Word Study on “Hazo” Strong says the Hebrew name “Hazo” “Chazow” ( חֲזׄו ) (H2375) means, “seer.” This individual is mentioned in no other passage in the Scriptures.

Genesis 22:23 Word Study on “Pildash” Gesenius and Strong say the Hebrew name “Pildash” ( פִּלְדָּשׁ ) (H6394) is of uncertain origin. BDB tells us the name means, “flame of fire.” This individual is mentioned in no other passage in the Scriptures.

Genesis 22:23 Word Study on “Jidlaph” Gesenius says the Hebrew name “Jidlaph” “Yidlaph” ( יִדְלָף ) (H3044) means, “weeping.” Strong says it means, “tearful.” PTW tells us the name means “melting away.” This individual is mentioned in no other passage in the Scriptures.

Genesis 22:23 Word Study on “Bethuel” Gesenius says the Hebrew name “Bethuel” “Bâthuw’el” ( בְּתוּאֵל ) (H1328) means, “man of God”. Strong says it means, “destroyed of God.” PTW tells us the name means, “dweller of God.” He is known in the Scriptures as the father of Laban and Rebekah (Genesis 22:22-23; Genesis 24:15; Genesis 24:24; Genesis 24:47; Genesis 24:50; Genesis 25:20; Genesis 28:2; Genesis 28:5) . He is last mentioned as “Bethuel the Syrian.”

Genesis 28:5, “And Isaac sent away Jacob: and he went to Padanaram unto Laban, son of Bethuel the Syrian, the brother of Rebekah, Jacob's and Esau's mother.”

Genesis 22:23 And Bethuel begat Rebekah: these eight Milcah did bear to Nahor, Abraham's brother.

Genesis 22:23 “Bethuel begat Rebekah” - Comments - Genealogies will often mention the names of women who played a prominent role in Jewish history.

Genesis 22:24 And his concubine, whose name was Reumah, she bare also Tebah, and Gaham, and Thahash, and Maachah.

Genesis 22:24 Word Study on “Reumah” Gesenius says the Hebrew name “Reumah” “Râ’uwmah” ( רְאוּמָה ) (H7208) means, “exalted.” Strong offers no meaning. PTW tells us the name means, “pearl, coral.” BDB tells us this word means, “elevated.” This individual is mentioned in no other passage in the Scriptures.

Genesis 22:24 Word Study on “Tebah” Gesenius says the Hebrew name “Tebah” “Tebach” ( טֶבַח ) (H2875) means, “a slaying, a slaughter.” Strong says it means, “massacre.” PTW tells us the name means, “thick, strong.” This individual is mentioned in no other passage in the Scriptures.

Genesis 22:24 Word Study on “Gaham” Gesenius says the Hebrew name “Gaham” ( גַּחַם ) (H1514) means, “having flaming eyes.” Strong tells us this word means, “to burn.” PTW tells us the name means, “blackness.” This individual is mentioned in no other passage in the Scriptures.

Genesis 22:24 Word Study on “Thahash” Gesenius explains the etymology of the Hebrew word “Tachash” ( תַּחַשׁ ) (H8477) to refer to either an animal skin, or the animal in particular, such as the seal or badger. Strong says this word refers to “a clean animal with fur, probably a species of antelope, a badger.” PTW tells us the name means, “reddish,” a reference to the color of the animal skin. This individual is mentioned in no other passage in the Scriptures.

Genesis 22:24 Word Study on “Maachah” - Gesenius says the Hebrew name “Maachah” “Ma`akah” ( מַעֲכָה ) (H4601) means, “oppression.” Strong says it means, “depression.” PTW says it means, “oppression.” The gender of this person, whether male or female, can be debated, since the context of Genesis 22:24 suggests a son, while we note that one of David’s wives, who was the mother of Absalom, also bore this name (2 Samuel 3:3). Although there are around ten individuals in the Old Testament by this name, this particular individual in not mentioned again.

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Bibliographical Information
Everett, Gary H. "Commentary on Genesis 22". Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/ghe/genesis-22.html. 2013.