Easter 2017 – Abraham, Isaac, and Jesus
Pastor Stephen Hayes
Sunday April 16, 2017
Theme – There are direct connections between several Biblical events that happened on Mt. Moriah and the Easter message. For example, there is much in common between Isaac and Jesus; with Jesus being the final, willing sacrifice for all mankind.
Abraham was a good son before he became a good leader
- In Genesis 12 God told Abram to leave his family.
- At this point in time, Abram was 75 years old. He had been a devoted son and family man his entire life.
- This devotion prepared him to be used by God. His relationship with God became more personal when God called him to his purpose and mission.
God taught His family about the necessity of sacrifice
- The children of Isaac and Jacob grew into the nation of Israel while they were enslaved in Egypt.
- God called Moses to lead the nation of Israel out of slavery back to the land He originally promised to Abraham.
- In Exodus 12 God taught the Israelites how to sacrifice an innocent lamb to temporarily pay for their sins.
Sacrifice and the messiah
- The Israelites performed their sacrifices in anticipation of the appearance of their messiah whom – they believed - would free them from their earthly oppressors.
- They had a general understanding of the messiah idea, but did not fully understand the enormity of what the Messiah would actually accomplish.
- Genesis 22 tells a story of devotion, submission and sacrifice.
- Isaac was submissive, obedient, and willing to be a sacrifice to the Father.
- However, the Father stopped the sacrifice of Isaac before it could happen, and Himself provided the needed sacrifice of a lamb (verse 13).
- The location where this happened was Mt. Moriah in the current day Old City of Jerusalem. Since Abraham’s time it has remained a place of significant temples and worship.
- When Jesus’ time came to be sacrificed, He willingly gave Himself as a sacrifice. Like Isaac, He never objected, but submitted to the will of His Father. Jesus became the sacrificial lamb.
- The sacrifice of Jesus is different from all previous sacrifices because it accomplished the payment for all sins, for all time.
- After Jesus, no more sacrifices have been necessary.
Jesus is now everywhere in the person of the Holy Spirit
- On the first Resurrection Sunday (Easter) Jesus rose from being dead, thereby demonstrating He had fully paid the price for all sins.
- He soon after returned to Heaven, but His Spirit was sent back to take His place on the planet.
- The Holy Spirit is now everywhere on the earth.
- The Holy Spirit also resides inside the soul of every believer.
- Like He did for Abraham and Isaac, God provides for all our needs in life – including the beautiful awareness that believers are guaranteed an eternal life with God after they die.
Reflective Questions for the Easter 2017 Message
- From looking at Genesis 22, and listening to Pastor Stephen’s message, identify as many connections as you can between Abraham & Isaac and Jesus.
- Why, do you suppose, the Bible shows us these similarities?
- Why is it no longer necessary to sacrifice innocent lambs, or anything else, to God?
- How does the knowledge – and awareness – that the Holy Spirit is inside you influence how you perceive the world around you (your environment)?