It is Christmas again and we are busy trying to buy those gifts and filling our event calendars with family and church fellowship gatherings. But we as Christians need to remember that Jesus truly is the reason for the season. Christ came to Bethlehem to die for the sins of whosoever will. As I was pondering that thought, I began thinking of one of the first references to the coming and sacrifice of Jesus in Genesis 22. Abraham was told to carry Isaac to the ‘land of Moriah’ to a mountain ‘I will tell thee of’… Isaac was likely in his thirties as his mother dies soon after in the next chapter at the age of 127 and she bore Isaac at age 90. So Isaac, like Christ, goes willingly at the behest of his father to the place of sacrifice. And, like Christ, he carries the wood that he would be bound to to that place of sacrifice. By the way, this is Abraham’s fifth altar. Five is the number of Grace in God’s Word.
It is at the point of Abraham being fully surrendered to God’s will with his knife in the air, that Jesus, in His pre-incarnate state (a theophany), appears and stops the sacrifice from occurring. Jesus says to Abraham, “…now I know that thou fearest God, seeing thou hast not withheld thy son, thine only son from me .” This is a powerful glimpse at the wonderful plan of God. In I Chronicles 21, God sends His angel to judge Israel with pestilence for the sin of David in numbering the people. He stops the angel from destroying Jerusalem when David repents of this sin at a spot called the threshingfloor of Ornan the Jebusite. Gad the seer tells David to build an altar on that spot and offer up a burnt offering. Just a few chapters forward in II Chronicles 3:1 we see “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.” Did you see that? The threshingfloor of Ornan the Jebusite is in Mount Moriah. Read the rest of this entry »