‘That night the Lord appeared to him and said, “I am the God of your father Abraham. Do not be afraid, for I am with you; I will bless you and will increase the number of your descendants for the sake of my servant Abraham.”’ Genesis 26.24
Something very powerful seems to be happening here when God appeared to Isaac and revealed himself as the God of his father, Abraham. It is as if God was saying that when he revealed himself in such a way all the promises that he made to Abraham were there for Isaac as well. Isaac was being encouraged to accept the promises as if they were made to him.
There is a moment towards the end of John’s Gospel when Jesus appeared to Mary and said to her that he was going to return to “my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.” (John 20.17). However, these are not just words spoken to Mary. In the Greek text ‘your’ is plural – it is for all of us.
Just as the promises and blessings given to Abraham were being offered to Isaac, so all the love, promises and blessings that Jesus experienced are offered to us. This is the love of God which undergirds our lives if we could but accept it, believe it and enjoy it.
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The Revd John Ryeland, Director of The Christian Healing Mission