|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
22:15-19 There are high declarations of God's favour to Abraham in this confirmation of the covenant with him, exceeding any he had yet been blessed with. Those that are willing to part with any thing for God, shall have it made up to them with unspeakable advantage. The promise, ver. 18, doubtless points at the Messiah, and the grace of the gospel. Hereby we know the loving-kindness of God our Saviour towards sinful man, in that he hath not withheld his Son, his only Son, from us. Hereby we perceive the love of Christ, in that he gave himself a sacrifice for our sins. Yet he lives, and calls to sinners to come to him, and partake of his blood-bought salvation. He calls to his redeemed people to rejoice in him, and to glorify him. What then shall we render for all his benefits? Let his love constrain us to live not to ourselves, but to Him who died for us, and rose again. Admiring and adoring His grace, let us devote our all to his service, who laid down his life for our salvation. Whatever is dearest to us upon earth is our Isaac. And the only way for us to find comfort in an earthly thing, is to give it by faith into the hands of God. Yet remember that Abraham was not justified by his readiness to obey, but by the infinitely more noble obedience of Jesus Christ; his faith receiving this, relying on this, rejoicing in this, disposed and made him able for such wonderful self-denial and duty.
Verses 15-18. - And the angel of the Lord called unto Abraham out of heaven the second time, - the object of the first call having been to arrest the consummation of the fatal deed which threatened Isaac's life, and to declare the Divine satisfaction with the patriarch's complete spiritual surrender of his son, the purpose of the second was to renew the promise in reward for his fidelity and obedience - and said, By myself have I sworn, - by my word (Onkelos); by my name (Arabic); equivalent to by himself, by his soul (Jeremiah 51:14), or by his holiness (Amos 4:2) - an anthropomorphism by which God in the most solemn manner pledges the perfection of his Divine personality for the fulfillment of his promise; an act which he never again repeats in his intercourse with the patriarchs. The oath here given to Abraham (frequently referred to in later Scripture: Genesis 24:7; Genesis 26:3; Genesis 50:24; Exodus 42:5, 11; 32:13; 33:1; Isaiah 45:23; Hebrews 6:13) is confirmed by the addition of - saith the Lord, - literally, the utterance of Jehovah; like the Latin air, inquit Dominus, the usual prophetic phrase accompanying Divine oracles (cf. Isaiah 3:15; Ezekiel 5:11; Amos 6:8), though occurring in the Pentateuch only here and in Numbers 14:28 - for because thou hast done this thing, and hast not withheld thy son, thine only son (vide supra, Ver. 12; from which the LXX., Syriac, and Samaritan insert here the words "from me"): that in blessing I will bless thee, and, multiplying, I will multiply thy seed as the stars of heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore; - literally, upon the lip of the sea; a repetition and accumulation of the promises previously made to the patriarch concerning his seed (cf. Genesis 12:2, 3; Genesis 13:14-16; Genesis 15:5; Genesis 17:1-8), with the special amplification following - and thy seed shall possess (i.e. occupy by force) the gate of his enemies; shall conquer their armies and capture their cities (Keil, Murphy); though that the spiritual sense of entering in through the doorway of their susceptibilities in conversion (Lange) is not to be overlooked may be inferred from the appended prediction - and in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed (vide Genesis 12:3, where "families of the ground" occur as the equivalent of "nations of the earth"); because thou hast obeyed my voice. Originally unconditional in its grant, the promise is here distinctly declared to be renewed to him as one who, besides being justified and taken into covenant with Jehovah, had through trial and obedience attained to the spiritual patriarchate of a numerous posterity.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And the Angel of the Lord called unto Abraham out of heaven the second time. The Angel having restrained him from slaying his son, and having provided another sacrifice, which he offered, calls to him again; having something more to say to him, which was to renew the covenant he had made with him, and confirm it by an oath.
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