THE PURPOSE OF THIS DEVOTION IS
TO HIGHLIGHT ASPECTS OF THE LIFE OF THE PATRIARCH ISAAC THAT DEMONSTRATE HIS KEY ROLE IN THE UNFOLDING OF THE ETERNAL COVENANT IN MESSIAH.
KEY VERSES IN THIS STUDY ARE:
Genesis 25:21; Galatians 4:28, seq.; Hebrews 11:8-18.
In the STONE Tanakh, the opening footnote to parashah Toldot emphasizes the key role of Isaac among the three patriarchs: he is the bridge between Abraham and Jacob who separates good from evil (Jacob from Esau) and thus makes possible the development of the nation in righteousness.
In the devotion from year two of this series we emphasized the roles of the three generations of matriarchs: Sarah, Rebecca and Rachel. All three were barren, unable to naturally conceive. The commentator pointed out that “their experiences prove that the emergence of Israel is a miracle, for each new generation was a gift of God to a mother who could not have given birth naturally.” This of course lays the foundation for the greatest matriarchal miracle of all, the virgin birth of the Word of God Incarnate (The Eternal Son). (Genesis 3:15; Proverbs 8:22 seq. with 30:4; Isaiah 7:14 LXX; Luke 1:35)
A major key to the life of Isaac is that he was a man of prayer (see last week’s parashah devotion, FI Y4 Wk 5). We see this role of intercession once more in the supernatural manifestation of birthing in Rebecca. She was barren. But in Genesis 25:21 we read,
VA’YEH’EHT’TAR YITZ’CHAK LA’YHVH LE’NO’CHACH ISH’TO CI A’KAR’AH HI
VA’YEI’A’TEYR LO YHVH VAT’TA’HAR RIVKA ISH’TO
An Isaac entreated the LORD for his wife Rebecca, for she was barren
And the LORD permitted himself to be entreated by him, and Rebecca conceived.
Thus, the Promise to us all was by way of intercession which brought forth by divine intervention the miracle of conception according to Promise.
You will not experience God by study alone, but rather by wrestling in the spirit of prayer until the manifestation of the Promise comes forth in your life by an action of the Spirit of God, even as the Promise of the Messiah was brought into realization by a direct working in the life of Mary by the blessed Holy Spirit.
Promise and Realization.
Paul tells us in Galatians 4:28,
VA’ANACHNU EH’CHAI HIN’NU Ce’YITZ’CHAK B’NEI HA’HAV’TA’CHAH
But we, brothers, as Isaac (was) are children of Promise.
In other words, we are not from a natural process, nor are we from a theological concept merely, but we are from a divine working of the Spirit of God through the Gospel of the Son of Promise–Yeshua. Ours is a life of faith.
Hebrews 11:8-18 tells us very intricately that Abraham dwelt with Isaac and Jacob (who lived in tents with his grandfather and father during the early years of his life) and that Sarah received strength to conceive seed because she judged God to be faithful to his promise. And from Abraham “who was as good as dead” came forth (from the three patriarchs) the multitude of the nation and eventually the spiritual seed of Messiah whom He has redeemed from among all nations of the world and engrafted by the Spirit of Adoption into the covenants of promise which are in Him. Amen.
Thus, the role of Isaac among the patriarchs is the key to all: Isaac is the Son of Promise through whom the Redemption became realized in the virgin-born Son-Messiah.
Let us all engage with the blessed Holy Spirit in the miracles of God in our lives. For it is by the Promise contained in the Messiah that we are saved and brought to the goal of fulness in him.