In my morning reading this year, I'm going straight through from Genesis to Revelation. Part of today's reading was Genesis 22:1-19, where God tests Abraham by telling him to sacrifice his son, Isaac.
Every year when I read this passage, I wonder what Isaac thought about it or what kind of conversation took place between him and Abraham. The Bible doesn't give us this information, only that Isaac asked where the sheep was (verse 7). First, my question is how old was Isaac at this time?
He is referred to as a "lad" or boy depending on the translation. I have seen these terms used for anyone around age six to late 20's, but I'm guessing Isaac was likely in his pre teens if not younger. He was old enough to be familiar with regular sacrifices, know what was needed, and why they were done.
Abraham traveled for three days, on foot, knowing what God had asked him to do, but he and Isaac didn't discuss the journey until the end. Today, with kids buried in cell phones, I could see this happening easily, but it must have been hard for Abraham not to say anything.
When we finally get to the mountain, we're only told that Abraham told Isaac a lamb would be provided. Next, the alter is arranged and Isaac is bound and placed on it. God then stops Abraham and shows him a sheep caught in a thicket.
Either in this instant or on the way home, father and son would have talked about faith in God and serving Him in all times. Abraham's faith is referenced multiple times in the Bible as a testimony to him and an example.
A few months ago, I watched a documentary on people who were persecuted for their faith. One man from Russia recalled when he was a boy, his father was arrested for being a Christian. The boy and his mother were later allowed to visit his father in jail, and see how much he had been tortured.
When the mom tried to quickly slip a New Testament to the dad, a guard noticed and threatened torture, or execution, for such an action. Mom stood up to the guard and said she, her husband, and son could be killed and they would not deny Christ. Now as an elderly adult, and his own prison story, the man said that instance solidified his faith and made him respect his parents.
Thousands of years earlier, I imagine this must have been similar for Isaac. He too was a faithful man of God as an adult. This entire passage is a foreshadowing of what was to come. Jesus, God's only Son, was sacrificed for our sins. All who repent of sin and trust in Him alone will be saved.