June 14, 2008

Isaac a Type of Christ?

Alright, I was reading some of my back blog posts and I came across one Between Two Worlds, that peeked my interest. The title of the Blog was called "Isaac a Type of Christ?" The post is as follows:
Gerard Van Groningen, writing in massive (1,000+ pages!) Messianic Revelation in the Old Testament (pp. 144, 145):
. . . it is assumed by many Christians that Isaac, the only beloved son place on the altar by his father Abraham as a sacrifice to God, is a clear and definite type of Christ who, as the heavenly Father's only beloved Son, was sent by his Father to die on the cross. When, however, it comes to explaining precisely in which way Isaac was a symbol of Christ and his sacrificial death for sinners, and then an actual forward-looking type of Christ on the cross, persistent difficulties have not been overcome.

But Isaac was not sacrificed; he was not put to death; he was not burned as an incense gift to God and he made neither expiation nor propitiation for others. It was the ram provided at a suitable moment that became a substitutionary sacrifice on the altar, substituting, in fact, for Isaac. Thus, the ram slain served as a symbol and was a type of Christ who died in the place of others.
Here are my thoughts on the matter, for whatever they are worth. In the situation, this gentlemen is correct, the ram is a type of Christ. It died a substitutionary death to purchase life for Isaac, who was as good as dead. However, I think Isaac was a type, as well, and not just a type, but a prophecy being enacted. I don't know whether it is legitimate to claim this, but what it seems to be saying is that someday there will be a Son that is slain and slain by the hand of the Father. Obviously, that would be fulfilled in Jesus Christ and substitutionary, sacrificial death on the cross. However, the time was not yet right, so God provided the ram to die in the place of the boy, so that he might live.