Jesus In Genesis
Today we are going to be looking at a sweeping view of about 2000 years of history focusing specifically on the very foundation of our faith in the prophecies and foreshadowing’s of a coming Messiah which we now know to be our Lord Jesus Christ.
• Genesis 3:14 The LORD God said to the serpent, “Because you have done this, Cursed are you more than all cattle, And more than every beast of the field; On your belly you will go, And dust you will eat All the days of your life;
• Genesis 3:15 And I will put enmity Between you and the woman, And between your seed and her seed; He shall bruise you on the head, And you shall bruise him on the heel.”
For some background Adam and Eve had just violated the Lord's only law and are subsequently cursed along with the devil. Before being expelled from the presence of God in the garden of Eden he offers them a glimmer of hope amidst the black backdrop of his divine wrath. The Lord promises eve a seed, a child, a son who will ultimately fix everything and crush the head of the devil. This is the only time in the Bible "seed" is associated with women as women do not have seed. This typifies the virgin birth of our Lord Jesus Christ it is the first promise of a Messiah and Savior in the scriptures. All prophecy has its foundation in these mysterious words the Lord spoke to humanity before expelling them from the Garden.
Notice the seed of Satan does bruise the heal of Christ which he did by inspiring his own people to crucify him, but as we now understand looking back this was all based on the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God (Acts 2:23). Finally Christ inflicts a mortal wound by crushing the head of the serpent, which he did by destroying death (Heb 2:14) and will one day by throwing Satan into the lake of fire (Rev 20:10).
• Genesis 3:21 The LORD God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife, and clothed them
• Isaiah 61:10 I will rejoice greatly in the LORD, my soul will exult in my God; For He has clothed me with garments of salvation, He has wrapped me with a robe of righteousness..
This is the first sacrifice in scripture it shows us that the wage of sin is death. Adam and Eve tried to cover up their nakedness and shame which is a physical manifestation of our sin with fig leaves. Those fig leaves represent our ability or self-righteousness, and the clear testimony of scripture is that before the Lord our righteousness is as filthy rags. So rather than leave them in them the Lord sacrifices the first animal and clothes them with the skin of it. This is the first foreshadowing or type of the Lamb of God Jesus Christ dying so that we may live, and clothing us with his salvation for eternity.
To summarize Genesis chapter 3 mankind has now plunged itself into sin and death has entered creation. The only glimmer of hope given is in a coming seed (child) and a sacrifice and that is where I want to direct your attention thru ought this study as we move on to Genesis chapter 4.
• Genesis 4:1 Now the man had relations with his wife Eve, and she conceived and gave birth to Cain, and she said, “I have gotten a man-child with the help of the LORD.” 2Again, she gave birth to his brother Abel. And Abel was a keeper of flocks, but Cain was a tiller of the ground. 3So it came about in the course of time that Cain brought an offering to the LORD of the fruit of the ground. 4 Abel, on his part also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of their fat portions. And the LORD had regard for Abel and for his offering; 5 but for Cain and for his offering He had no regard. So Cain became very angry and his countenance fell. 6 Then the LORD said to Cain, “Why are you angry? And why has your countenance fallen? 7“If you do well, will not your countenance be lifted up? And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door; and its desire is for you, but you must master it.” 8 Cain told Abel his brother. And it came about when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother and killed him.
Immediately after expulsion from the garden the Lord has instructed his people to continue offering sacrifices. Notice that there is no religious system, law or gathering on Sunday. The Lord simply promised a son was coming and Adam and Eve instructed their children to continue offering sacrifices for sin. Furthermore, it’s clear the fruit of the ground is still cursed and the Lord only respects a blood sacrifice. The New Testament makes it evident that without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness. (Heb 9:22).
Also take note not only is the sacrificial system still in place to point towards the final sacrifice of Christ but the first murder in human history was that of a good shepherd! How clear all scripture becomes when we look for Jesus on every page he is the good shepherd who gave his life for the sheep (John 10). From Genesis to Revelation, Jesus is the key that unlocks all the scriptures because the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy (Rev 19:10). Do you want to understand the Bible better reader? Then look for Jesus on every page.
• Genesis 4:25 Adam had relations with his wife again; and she gave birth to a son, and named him Seth, for, she said, “God has appointed me another offspring in place of Abel, for Cain killed him.”
• Luke 3:38 the son of Enosh, the son of Seth, the son of Adam, the son of God.
To summarize this chapter, we have a continuation of the sacrificial system. A clarification of that system which reveals only a blood sacrifice will cover our sins. A foreshadowing of Christ in that the first person murdered was a good shepherd. Finally, the lineage Jesus eventually came from was established. Take note that even though Cain was still alive after he murdered his brother Abel, that Eve is confident the Messiah will not come thru his lineage. We cannot be dogmatic about these ancient times, but it does seem clear the Lord has spoken to his people in many times and many ways but now in these last days speaks to us by his Son (Heb 1:2).
• Genesis 6:5 the LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great on the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.
• Genesis 6:13 Then God said to Noah, “The end of all flesh has come before Me; for the earth is filled with violence because of them; and behold, I am about to destroy them with the earth.
• Genesis 6:17-18 “Behold, I, even I am bringing the flood of water upon the earth, to destroy all flesh in which is the breath of life, from under heaven; everything that is on the earth shall perish. “But I will establish My covenant with you; and you shall enter the ark—you and your sons and your wife, and your sons’ wives with you.
For some background well over a millennium has passed as the earth’s population continues to grow. Satan continues his plan of trying to destroy not only the seed but also the entire human race by intermingling demons with humans to produce a sort of demigod hybrid race. The wickedness on earth reaches such a fever pitch that the Lord literally drowns the entire earth with a flood. Most bible scholars seem to estimate that there were 100’s of millions of people living at this time on the earth.
• 2 Peter 2:5 and did not spare the ancient world, but saved Noah, one of eight people, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood on the world of the ungodly;
By the grace of God, the Lord saves Noah who is a descendent of Seth with his family for a total of just 8 people. This preserves humanity as well as the lineage thru which the Messiah would one day be born. Behold how fearful a thing it is to fall into the hands of the living God. The apostles when warning about false teachers and those who turn the grace of God into a license to sin wisely remind us that the same Lord who died for us on the cross is the one who sat enthroned at the flood (Ps 29:10).
• Genesis 7:16 Those that entered, male and female of all flesh, entered as God had commanded him; and the LORD closed it behind him.
There are several foreshadowing’s of Christ in the description of the ark that is a separate teaching all by itself. But for our purposes I want to highlight my favorite one. Which is that the Ark had a single door just like the Tabernacle. Jesus himself said, “I am the door, if anyone who enters by me will be saved.” Just as God was the one who closed the door of the ark to preserve humanity. Even so he has sealed us with the Spirit when we believe in Christ who is the ark of our salvation saving us from the divine wrath to come (2 Pet 3:6-7). From the foundation of the world God had in mind a single way of salvation, Jesus is that way. As it is written in the 118th Psalm; This is the gate of the LORD; The righteous will enter through it. The earliest Christians were called followers of, “the way.”
• Genesis 8:20 Then Noah built an altar to the LORD, and took of every clean animal and of every clean bird and offered burnt offerings on the altar. 21The LORD smelled the soothing aroma; and the LORD said to Himself, “I will never again curse the ground on account of man, for the intent of man’s heart is evil from his youth; and I will never again destroy every living thing, as I have done.
• Ephesians 5:2 and walk in love, just as Christ also loved you and gave Himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God as a fragrant aroma.
After Noah and his family come safely off the ark they continue the sacrificial system. Here we see that the sacrifices satisfy, sooth, please and appease the Lord’s wrath (Zech 6:8). The idea given here is that God cannot rest until the demands of his holiness and justice are met for the violation of his law. Therefor a sacrifice is soothing pleasing, and a fragrant aroma to him. All animal sacrifices have no power to save eternally but must be offered up year after year and therefor point to the final sacrifice of Christ.
• Genesis 9:18 Now the sons of Noah who came out of the ark were Shem and Ham and Japheth; and Ham was the father of Canaan. 19These three were the sons of Noah, and from these the whole earth was populated.
• Genesis 9:26 He (Noah) also said, “Blessed be the LORD, The God of Shem; And let Canaan be his servant.
• Luke 3:36 the son of Cainan, the son of Arphaxad, the son of Shem, the son of Noah, the son of Lamech,
Noah’s three sons repopulate the world after the flood. Based on their behavior he blesses some and curses other. The most important detail in this exchange is that while Noah blesses Shem he calls the Lord “The God of Shem.” Establishing Shem as the seed and the New Testament lineage of Christ shows us clearly above that our Lord descended from Shem.
• Genesis 11:10 This is the account of Shem. Two years after the flood, when Shem was 100 years old, he became the father of Arphaxad
• Genesis 11:26 When Terah was 70 years old, he became the father of Abram…
Scripture records the lineage of the coming seed and Messiah. From Adam to Seth to Shem to Abram who was later renamed Abraham who is the father of our faith and from whose lineage Jesus Christ Came! Clearly the story of Noah’s ark is full of types and shadows of our Lord. As well as a further clarification as to the exact lineage of the Messiah being outlined. Now let’s fast forward a few hundred years and see why Abraham is called the father of our faith
• Genesis 12:1 Now the LORD said to Abram, “Go forth from your country, And from your relatives And from your father’s house, To the land which I will show you;
Quite interesting just before this chapter is the origin of all false religion the tower of Babel. From Genesis to Revelation the Lord calls his people out of the wicked world system (See Gen 11 and Rev 17-18). Abram is not a believer he is not going to church or searching for God he is an idolater whom the Lord calls to himself.
• Genesis 12:2-3 And I will make you a great nation, And I will bless you, And make your name great; And so you shall be a blessing. And I will bless those who bless you, And the one who curses you I will curse. And in you all the families of the earth will be blessed.”
• Galatians 3:8 The Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel beforehand to Abraham, saying, “ALL THE NATIONS WILL BE BLESSED IN YOU.”
The Lord promises Abram several things to include a land and nation. For our purposes we will focus on how all the families and nations of the earth will be blessed thru Abram. The New Testament shows us clearly that the Lord was slowly revealing the gospel to him.
• Genesis 15:4 Then the word of the LORD came to Abram, saying, “This one will not be your heir, but one who comes from your own body will be your heir.” 5And He took him outside and said, “Now look toward the heavens, and count the stars, if you are able to count them.” And He said to him, “So shall your descendants be.”
Abram is elderly at this point and his wife is passed childbearing age being nearly 90 years old. He is doubting the promises of God so the Lord graciously reiterates the promises to him specifically concerning his seed. See how the foundation of the Christian religion is rooted in waiting for a Son?
• Genesis 15:6 Then he believed in the LORD; and He reckoned it to him as righteousness.
• Romans 4:3 For what does the Scripture say? “ABRAHAM BELIEVED GOD, AND IT WAS CREDITED TO HIM AS RIGHTEOUSNESS.”
• John 6:47 “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes has eternal life.
The importance of this verse cannot be overstated or fully exegeted in this article. Hundreds of years before the law it is recorded that righteousness was credited to Abram on the basis of his faith. Notice that our justification with God is dependent on us believing the Lord’s promises. For All the promises of God are fulfilled in Christ! (2 Cor 1:20).
Is there a final sacrifice needed for sins? Christ has fulfilled it. Wasn’t the whole land of Palestine promised to Abraham? Christ will conquer it upon his return. Doesn’t the Davidic dynasty need an eternal King to reign upon a throne in Jerusalem as promised from Jerusalem? Christ will sit there one day. Is not the Church promised in the letters of Revelation that she will rule the nations with a rod of iron? Christ will hand it to us. Are the meek really going to inherit the world? Christ will gift it to them one day. Will we really rise from the dead? Do not be surprised the hour is coming when all in the tombs will hear his voice and come out. Every promise of God recorded in scripture will be accomplished thru Christ!
• Genesis 15:7 And He said to him, “I am the LORD who brought you out of Ur of the Chaldeans, to give you this land to possess it.” 8 He said, “O Lord GOD, how may I know that I will possess it?”
• Mark 9:24 Immediately the boy’s father cried out and said, “I do believe; help my unbelief.”
Now that I am off my soap box let’s come down from that lofty mountain of prophetic truth and return to the text. Notice that Abram believes the Lord he clearly has salvific faith, but he also has doubts. This is comforting to us as those who have faith in a measure and not perfectly.
• Genesis 15:9 So He said to him, “Bring Me a three year old heifer…
• Hebrews 6:17 In the same way God, desiring even more to show to the heirs of the promise the unchangeableness of His purpose, interposed with an oath,
The Lord seeks to assure Abram of the promises made an seals the covenant with a sacrifice. See how clearly scripture has illuminated us to the purposes of sacrifice? They are only to be of blood, they provide a covering for sin, they appease the wrath of God and they seal a covenant with God. If Abram was confident we should be much more confident of the eternal covenant God has made with us because he has sealed it with the blood of his own Son.
• Genesis 15:12 Now when the sun was going down, a deep sleep fell upon Abram; and behold, terror and great darkness fell upon him.
One final note on this chapter notice that Abram is asleep during the sacrificial ceremony. The picture God is painting in scripture is clear, this covenant is based on God’s faithfulness not on man’s ability.
Let’s summarize Genesis chapter 15 before we move on. How clear this picture is becoming! Abram is saved by grace in that he does nothing but sleep during the sacrificial ceremony. Thru faith in that he believes the Lord’s promises and is credited with righteousness. In Jesus Christ in which all the promises and sacrifices point toward!
• Genesis 17:9 But God said, “No, but Sarah your wife will bear you a son, and you shall call his name Isaac; and I will establish My covenant with him for an everlasting covenant for his descendants after him.
• Galatians 4:31 So then, brethren, we are not children of a bondwoman, but of the free woman.
In this chapter Abram is given a new name – Abraham. He has a son by his bond servant named Ishmael and wants this son to be the fulfillment of the promise. However, the Lord specifies his promised seed will come from his wife Sarah the free woman and that he should be named Isaac. We later learn in the New Testament that these two women resemble two groups. Those born in bondage and slavery to law and sin and those born again into the freedom of Christ. Paul tells us in Galatians that believers are like Isaac children of the promise.
Genesis 18 is a fascinating chapter I have done a stand-alone teaching video on it. Take some time to familiarize yourself with the verses below.
• Genesis 18:1 Then the LORD appeared to Abraham by the Oaks of Mamre in the heat of the day, while he was sitting at the entrance of his tent. 2And Abraham looked up and saw three men standing nearby. When he saw them, he ran from the entrance of his tent to meet them and bowed low to the ground.
• Genesis 18:8 Then Abraham brought curds and milk and the calf that had been prepared, and he set them before the men and stood by them under the tree as they ate.
• Exodus 33:20 But He added, "You cannot see My face, for no one can see Me and live."
• John 1:18 No one has seen God at any time; the only begotten God who is in the bosom of the Father, He has explained Him.
Both the Old and New Testament tell us mankind cannot look upon God and live. Furthermore, scripture states explicitly no one has seen God. However, it is apparent that Abraham had a meal with Yahweh how is this possible? Hundreds of years later the elders of the nation of Israel ascended a mountain with Moses and saw God and had a meal also (Exodus 24:10.) Many times the nation of Israel has indeed seen the Lord in scripture.
Scripture begins to reveal that every time the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob is seen in the Old Testament we are seeing a preincarnate appearance of our Lord Jesus Christ. The God of Israel the second person of the glorious Trinity the Son of God the very image of the invisible God revealed himself to Abraham in a very intimate way. Notice both Abraham and later the elders of the nation of Israel shared a meal with the Lord just as we do when we partake of communion.
• Genesis 18:13 And the LORD asked Abraham, “Why did Sarah laugh and say, ‘Can I really bear a child when I am old?’14 Is anything too difficult for the LORD? At the appointed time I will return to you—in about a year—and Sarah will have a son.”15 But Sarah was afraid, so she denied it and said, “I did not laugh.” “No,” replied the LORD, “but you did laugh.”
The Lord promises yet again to establish his promise and the seed through Sarah. Since Sarah was passed childbearing age, she laughed. Amazingly whatever form the Lord took here he was gentle enough to be laughed at by a 90-year-old woman! It is impossible to think the Lord revealed himself in any other form than that of a human. Immediately after this exchange is the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah. Behold the kindness and severity of our God on his children he humbles himself to be laughed at by an elderly woman. But to his enemies he is the destroyer of cities! How much can we learn about both the grace and holiness of our God in these chapters.
Genesis 22 will be the final chapter we look at. This chapter has been called the greatest scene in the Old Testament by many. We have seen from the fall of man in Chapter 3 clear thru to Chapter 22 the Lord establishing the lineage of the coming seed the Messiah. We have seen him foreshadow his sacrificial ministry in many ways. With all this in mind I hope you will see the next chapter as the ribbon cutting ceremony of the Christian faith. Indeed, I believe Genesis 22 can be seen as inauguration of the gospel promises and requires the most diligent study.
• Genesis 22:1 Now it came about after these things, that God tested Abraham, and said to him, “Abraham!” And he said, “Here I am.” 2He said, “Take now your son, your only son, whom you love, Isaac, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I will tell you.” 3So Abraham rose early in the morning and saddled his donkey, and took two of his young men with him and Isaac his son; and he split wood for the burnt offering, and arose and went to the place of which God had told him. 4On the third day Abraham raised his eyes and saw the place from a
distance. 5Abraham said to his young men, “Stay here with the donkey, and I and the lad will go over there; and we will worship and return to you.”
• Zechariah 9:9 Rejoice greatly, daughter of Zion! Shout in triumph, daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your king is coming to you; He is righteous and endowed with salvation, Humble, and mounted on a donkey, Even on a colt, the foal of a donkey.
• John 12:14 Jesus, finding a young donkey, sat on it; as it is written, 15“FEAR NOT, DAUGHTER OF ZION; BEHOLD, YOUR KING IS COMING, SEATED ON A DONKEY’S COLT.”
This chapter literally explodes with prophetic truth from the start. Isaac is called Abraham’s only son whom he loves (John 3:16). The Lord instructs Abraham to take him into a mountain in Jerusalem to be sacrificed as an offering for sin. He then rides there on a donkey! When we understand the clear foreshadowing of Christ riding into Jerusalem on a donkey to his own sacrifice thousands of years later; as well as the specific prophecy in Zechariah written 500 years before Jesus was born, we see the picture becomes clear. How true are the words that the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy! All scripture points us to the Lamb of God slain from the foundation of the universe.
• Gen 22:6 Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering and laid it on Isaac his son, and he took in his hand the fire and the knife. So the two of them walked on together.
• John 19:17 Carrying His own cross, He went out to The Place of the Skull, which in Hebrew is called Golgotha.
As if it were not clear enough already what this ceremony is showing us the flood of divine truth keeps coming. There really is no need to comment on these verses it will only water them down. By now you should be able to see clearly that both Isaac and Jesus carry the wood for their own sacrifices! How incredible the revelation of the mystery of the gospel is. Which had been kept secret for ages past but now is made manifest and by the scriptures of the prophets made known to all Romans (16:25-26).
• Genesis 22:7 Isaac spoke to Abraham his father and said, “My father!” And he said, “Here I am, my son.” And he said, “Behold, the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for the burnt offering?” 8Abraham said, “God will provide for Himself the lamb for the burnt offering, my son.”
• John 1:29 The next day he saw Jesus coming to him, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!
This verse could mean that Lord will provide a Lamb in which case you will see shortly that he did. But it could also mean that the Lord will provide himself as a sacrifice. Either way this text reveals everything we have been trying to explain in this article. This is the main point of all scripture. To bring us to a knowledge of what was really taking place in the garden. To show us what all the sacrifices point toward. To show us what the prophets meant when they said someone is coming who would be led like a lamb led to the slaughter (Isaiah 53:7).
• Genesis 22:9 Then they came to the place of which God had told him; and Abraham built the altar there and arranged the wood, and bound his son Isaac and laid him on the altar, on top of the wood. 10Abraham stretched out his hand and took the knife to slay his son. 11But the angel of the LORD called to him from heaven and said, “Abraham, Abraham!” And he said, “Here I am.” 12He said, “Do not stretch out your hand against the lad, and do nothing to him; for now I know that you fear God, since you have not withheld your son, your only son, from Me.”
• Acts 2:23 This Man, delivered over by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God, you nailed to a cross by the hands of godless men and put Him to death.
Just as Isaac was a willing sacrifice so was Jesus. Just as Isaac was bound to the wood so our Lord was nailed to a Cross. Just as Isaac rode a donkey and carried his own wood so did Jesus. But unlike Isaac our Lord was not undergoing a test. He was not a part of a symbol or mock execution. The Lord Jesus Christ was bearing the weight of the sins of everyone who would ever believe. He drank the cup of divine wrath for every one of the elect. The prophets said he would be satisfied but from the anguish of his soul. He was forsaken on the cross so we could return to the communion we had lost in the Garden.
• Genesis 22:13 Then Abraham raised his eyes and looked, and behold, behind him a ram caught in the thicket by his horns; and Abraham went and took the ram and offered him up for a burnt offering in the place of his son.
• Matthew 27:29 And after twisting together a crown of thorns, they put it on His head, and put a reed in His right hand; and they knelt down before Him and mocked Him, saying, “Hail, King of the Jews!”
• Genesis 3:18 “Both thorns and thistles it shall grow for you; And you will eat the plants of the field;
The curse in the garden is an expression of God’s righteous wrath for the violation of his law. Just as the curse yielded thorns and the ram was caught in the thicket by his horns; Christ as a symbol had a crown of thorns placed on his head. He was cursed so that we might receive the blessing promised to Abraham (Gal 3:13).
• Genesis 22:14 Abraham called the name of that place The LORD Will Provide, as it is said to this day, “In the mount of the LORD it will be provided.”
There are only two religions on earth. There is the lie from Satan of human achievement which is clothed with self-righteousness and seeks to cover our sin with fig leaves. Then there is the truth from God concerning divine accomplishment which offers us the very righteousness of God thru faith in Jesus Christ who robes us with his righteousness based on the merits of the cross.
This mountain is where David built an altar and later Solomon built the temple. This exact spot is the hottest piece of real estate on earth. There are several nations that would gladly war just to have control over it and Israel has in recent history come back into possession of it as scripture prophecies.
• Genesis 22:15 Then the angel of the LORD called to Abraham a second time from heaven, 16 and said, “By Myself I have sworn, declares the LORD, because you have done this thing and have not withheld your son, your only son, 17indeed I will greatly bless you, and I will greatly multiply your seed as the stars of the heavens and as the sand which is on the seashore; and your seed shall possess the gate of their enemies. 18“In your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice.”
• Gal 3:16 Now the promises were spoken to Abraham and to his seed. He does not say, “And to seeds,” as referring to many, but rather to one, “And to your seed,” that is, Christ.
• Romans 4:13 For the promise to Abraham and his offspring that he would be heir of the world was not given through the law, but through the righteousness that comes by faith.
The Lord seals his promises with an oath. True to his word he gave Abraham a son and from his son Isaac came Jacob who gave birth to the twelve tribes of Israel. From Israel came our Lord Jesus Christ who is the Lion of the tribe of Judah the root of David. He is the seed that the Lord promised in Genesis 3:15.
One final note, Abraham was justified by faith. The test he underwent was merely evidence that he had already been credited righteousness by God. His willingness to sacrifice his son proved that his faith was real. Scripture reveals he was trusting God to potentially resurrect his son to life. The promises given to Abraham were not by the law they were by grace thru faith in the promises of God which are all fulfilled in Christ. Do you know any other God like this? There is no other rock like Jesus I know of none (Isaiah 44:8).