Hebrews 11:18
Of whom it was said, That in Isaac shall thy seed be called:
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(18) Of whom.—That is, Isaac. But the Greek words should perhaps be rendered to whom (Abraham): “Even he to whom it was said.” On this quotation from Genesis 21:12 see the Note on Romans 9:7.

11:8-19 We are often called to leave worldly connexions, interests, and comforts. If heirs of Abraham's faith, we shall obey and go forth, though not knowing what may befall us; and we shall be found in the way of duty, looking for the performance of God's promises. The trial of Abraham's faith was, that he simply and fully obeyed the call of God. Sarah received the promise as the promise of God; being convinced of that, she truly judged that he both could and would perform it. Many, who have a part in the promises, do not soon receive the things promised. Faith can lay hold of blessings at a great distance; can make them present; can love them and rejoice in them, though strangers; as saints, whose home is heaven; as pilgrims, travelling toward their home. By faith, they overcome the terrors of death, and bid a cheerful farewell to this world, and to all the comforts and crosses of it. And those once truly and savingly called out of a sinful state, have no mind to return into it. All true believers desire the heavenly inheritance; and the stronger faith is, the more fervent those desires will be. Notwithstanding their meanness by nature, their vileness by sin, and the poverty of their outward condition, God is not ashamed to be called the God of all true believers; such is his mercy, such is his love to them. Let them never be ashamed of being called his people, nor of any of those who are truly so, how much soever despised in the world. Above all, let them take care that they are not a shame and reproach to their God. The greatest trial and act of faith upon record is, Abraham's offering up Isaac, Ge 22:2. There, every word shows a trial. It is our duty to reason down our doubts and fears, by looking, as Abraham did, to the Almighty power of God. The best way to enjoy our comforts is, to give them up to God; he will then again give them as shall be the best for us. Let us look how far our faith has caused the like obedience, when we have been called to lesser acts of self-denial, or to make smaller sacrifices to our duty. Have we given up what was called for, fully believing that the Lord would make up all our losses, and even bless us by the most afflicting dispensations?Of whom it was said, That in Isaac shall thy seed be called; - Genesis 21:12. A numerous posterity had been promised to him. It was there said expressly that this promise was not to be fulfilled through the son of Abraham, by the bondwoman Hagar, but through Isaac. Of course, it was implied that Isaac was to reach manhood, and yet notwithstanding this, and notwithstanding Abraham fully believed it, be prepared deliberately, in obedience to the divine command, to put him to death. The phrase "thy seed be called" means, that his posterity was to be named after Isaac, or was to descend only from him. The word "called" in the Scriptures is often equivalent to the verb "to be;" see Isaiah 56:7. To "name" or "call" a thing was the same as to say that it was, or that it existed. It does not mean here that his "spiritual" children were to be called or selected from among the posterity of Isaac, but that the posterity promised to Abraham would descend neither from Ishmael nor the sons of Keturah, but in the line of Isaac. This is a strong circumstance insisted on by the apostle to show the strength of Abraham's faith. It was shown not only by his willing hess to offer up the child of his old age - his only son by his beloved wife, but by his readiness, at the command of God, to sacrifice even him on whom the fulfillment of the promises depended. 18. Of whom—rather as Greek "He (Abraham, not Isaac) TO whom it was said" [Alford]. Bengel supports English Version. So Heb 1:7 uses the same Greek preposition, "unto," for "in respect to," or "of." This verse gives a definition of the "only-begotten Son" (Heb 11:17).

in Isaac shall thy seed be called—(Ge 21:12). The posterity of Isaac alone shall be accounted as the seed of Abraham, which is the heir of the promises (Ro 9:7).

This did greaten Abraham’s trial, that unto him it was promised by God himself: That in this only begotten son Isaac, the eminently blessed and blessing Seed, with all his mystical body, should be called; that is, put in being, propagated and made known as by name in Isaac, Galatians 4:28. This God revealed to Abraham, Genesis 17:19,21, and hereby was his faith put to it to reconcile contradictions, as to believe this special promise, and yet execute this special command to sacrifice Isaac, yet to believe in him his seed should be called.

Of whom it is said,.... That is, of Isaac, Abraham's own son, whom he offered up; or rather, "to whom it was said", as the Vulgate Latin and Syriac versions render it; that is, to Abraham, for to him was this said, Genesis 21:12

that in Isaac shall thy seed be called; that numerous natural seed of his, which should inherit the land of Canaan; and his special famous seed, the Messiah, to whom the promises were made; See Gill on Romans 9:7.

Of whom it was said, That in Isaac shall thy seed be called:
Hebrews 11:18. Πρὸς ὅν] not: “of whom” (more accurately: “in relation to whom,” comp. Hebrews 1:7), in such wise that it should be referred to Isaac (Faber Stapulensis, Luther, Jac. Cappellus, Limborch, Wolf, Bengel, Carpzov, Michaelis, Chr. Fr. Schmid, and others), but: to whom, sc. Abraham.

ὅτι ἐν Ἰσαὰκ κληθήσεταί σοι σπέρμα] In Isaac shall a seed be named (called) to thee, i.e. through Isaac shall the posterity, whose forefather thou shalt be called, be founded. The emphasis falls upon ἐν Ἰσαάκ, and the citation is from Genesis 21:12. ὅτι, however, which has there causal significance, the author takes as a recitative.

18. of whom] Lit. “with reference to whom” (Isaac); or perhaps “to whom,” i.e. to Abraham.

in Isaac shall thy seed be called] Genesis 17:8; Genesis 17:19; Genesis 21:12, &c.

Hebrews 11:18. Πρὸς ὃν, as to whom) The pronoun is to be referred to the only-begotten; nay, this verse gives a definition of the only-begotten. Πρὸς, so far as concerns, has the force of limitation (determining the sense). The word had been spoken to Abraham, but referred to Isaac; comp. πρὸς, unto, in reference to, Luke 19:9.

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