Genesis 22

After these events, God tested Abraham, saying to him, “Abraham!” Without shock,
Abraham replied, “Here I am.” God said, “Take your son, the favored one you love, Isaac,
And go to the land of Seeing, Moriah. Offer him there as a burnt offering,
Upon one of the mountains which I will tell you of.” So Abraham, the next morning,
Saddled his ass and took with him two servants and his son Isaac, since he was devout.
He split wood for the offering, rose up, and went to the place God had told him about.
On the third day did Abraham lift up his eyes, and he then saw the place from afar.
Abraham told his men, “You stay here with the ass, while the boy and I both go up there,
We will worship and then we’ll return to you.” Abraham took all the offering wood,
And placed it upon Isaac his son. In his hand, he took firestone and knife where he stood.
So the two of them went off together. Isaac said to his father Abraham, “Father!”
Abraham replied, “Here I am, Isaac, my son.” Isaac said, “Please don’t think me a bother,
Here are firestone and wood, but now where is the lamb for the offering? I don’t perceive it.”
Abraham replied, “God will see to the lamb for His own offering, my son. Believe it.”
So the two of them went off together, arriving at the place that God had mentioned.
Abraham built the altar there, arranged the wood, and then finally bound Isaac his son,
Placing him on the altar on top of the wood. And then Abraham reached out his hand,
He took up the knife to slay his son. But God’s messenger called from heaven, “Abraham!”
The Lord’s messenger called to him, “Abraham! Abraham!” Abraham said, “Here I am.”
And the messenger said, “Don’t raise your hand against the boy, do not do one thing to him.
For I now know that you fear the Lord, since you did not withhold your son, favored, from me.”
Abraham lifted up his eyes and saw a ram with its horns caught in the shrubbery.
Abraham took the ram, and then offered it up on the same spot where his son had been.
“Adonai-yireh” (”God Sees”) he named the site, so we say, “On God’s mountain it is seen.”

Now God’s messenger called to him from heaven a second time, said, “By myself I swear,
The Lord has said, because you have done this thing and not withheld your son, your favored heir,
I will bless you indeed, I will make your seed many, like heaven’s stars up in the sky,
Like the sand on the seashore. The gate of your foes all your seed shall possess by and by,
All the nations of earth shall bless themselves by your seed, because you did heed my command.”
Abraham then returned to his servants, and they went together to Beersheva’s lands.

So then Abraham stayed in Beersheva. And following all this, Abraham was told,
“Milcah has also borne, sons to Nahor your brother: The firstborn, Utz, is the most old,
And Buz (brother of Utz), Kemuel who then fathered Aram, and Chesed, and Hazo,
And Pildash, Jidlaph and Bethuel.” Now Bethuel fathered Rebekah, as we know.
These eight Milcah bore to Nahor, Abraham’s brother. And his concubine named Reumah,
She had also borne children: She bore Tebah, Gaham, Tahash, and then she bore Maacah.

Comments (3)

Rachel BarenblatFebruary 24th, 2009 at 5:40 am

This is a notoriously tricky passage (and one which has spawned entire libraries of material and commentary!) so I was curious to see how you would handle it. Nice work! I’m going to bookmark this in delicious so that next fall when we roll around to reading this passage again (we read it each year on the second day of Rosh Hashanah) I can point my readers to it. :-)

SethFebruary 24th, 2009 at 10:38 am

Thanks. I definitely find the commentary on this passage interesting, and am intrigued by the school of thought that believes Abraham fails a test here rather than succeeding.

ChronoJuly 17th, 2009 at 2:09 am

wow god is great God’s test is the most greatest test i ever known ^_^

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