Character Studies

Lesson 7

ISAAC

"'In Isaac your seed shall be called.' That is, those who are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God; but the children of the promise are counted as the seed. For this is the word of promise: "At this time I will come and Sarah shall have a son."  (Romans 9:7-9)

Text: Genesis 17:15 - 35:29

Name: "Laughter"

Date: Unknown

Place: The Negev (Southern Palestine)

Occupation: Wealthy livestock owner

NT References: Romans 9:7-8; Hebrews 11:17-20; James 2:21-24

ISAAC, ABRAHAM'S "ONLY BEGOTTEN" SON
Hebrews 11:17; Genesis 17:16-19; 22:2
Child of promise

ISAAC AND HIS PARENTS
Circumcised by his father - Gen. 21:4
Protected by his mother - Gen. 21:8-10
Submissive to his father - Gen. 22:6-10; 24:1-4, 61-67
Heir of Abraham's estate - Gen. 25:5-6

ISAAC AND ISHMAEL
Contrasted - Gal. 4:22-23, 28-29
Conflict - Gen. 21:8-9
Cooperation - Gen. 25:8-9

ISAAC AND REBEKAH
Genesis 24
The search for a wife among his own people
The faithfulness of a servant
The providence of God
The willingness of Rebekah

ISAAC AND HIS SONS
Genesis 25:19-28; 27:1-40
Prayer for Rebekah answered - Gen. 25:20-21
The twins are "two nations" - Gen. 25:22-23 (Rom. 9:10-13)
Favoritism shown - Gen. 25:24-28
Blessing of the firstborn given to Jacob - Gen. 27:1-40

ISAAC AND ABIMELECH
Genesis 26
Famine and fear - Gen. 26:1-7 (Prov. 29:25)
Falsehood and its rebuke - Gen. 26:8-11
Prosperity and envy - Gen. 26:12-17
Conflict and calm - Gen. 26:18-23
Covenant with Abimelech - Gen. 26:24-33

TRAITS
STRENGTHS TO BE COMMENDED:
Submission (Gen. 22:6, 9); meditation (Gen. 24:63); trust in God (Gen. 22:7-8); deep devotion (Gen. 24:67; 25:21); peaceable (Gen. 26:20-22), worshipful (Gen. 26:25), faith (Heb. 11:20), reverence for God (Gen. 31:42, 53)
WEAKNESSES TO AVOID:
Fear of man (Gen. 26:7); played favorites between his sons (Gen. 25:28)

LESSONS FOR US
Faithfulness brings contentment to life.
Prayer is answered by our faithful God.
Parental favoritism causes family turmoil.
We must always fear God more than we fear man. (Gen. 26:7; 31:42, 53)

QUESTIONS
1. Since Abraham had more than one son, why is Isaac termed his "only begotten?"
(Heb. 11:17)

2. Discuss the occasions and ways Isaac showed respect for and submission to his father.

3. What kind of relationship existed between Isaac and Ishmael? Between Isaac and his other brothers?

4. What lessons do we learn from the story of the search for Isaac a wife? Did Isaac learn these lessons? (Gen. 24; 26:34-35; 28:1-5, 6-9)

5. What led to Rebekah giving birth? Describe her pregnancy and its implications.
(Gen. 25:21-26)

6. Why did Isaac favor Esau and Rebekah favor Jacob? Discuss the problems this caused. (Gen. 25:27-28)

7. Why did Isaac lie about his relation to Rebekah? What resulted from this incident? (Gen. 26)

8. Summing up his life, did Isaac fear God and have faith in Him?
(cf. Gen. 26:3-4; 31:42, 53)