Genesis 22:8 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Genesis 22:8, NIV: "Abraham answered, 'God himself will provide the lamb for the burnt offering, my son.' And the two of them went on together."

Genesis 22:8, ESV: "Abraham said, “God will provide for himself the lamb for a burnt offering, my son.” So they went both of them together."

Genesis 22:8, KJV: "And Abraham said, My son, God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt offering: so they went both of them together."

Genesis 22:8, NASB: "Abraham said, 'God will provide for Himself the lamb for the burnt offering, my son.' So the two of them walked on together."

Genesis 22:8, NLT: "'God will provide a sheep for the burnt offering, my son,' Abraham answered. And they both walked on together."

Genesis 22:8, CSB: "Abraham answered, "God himself will provide the lamb for the burnt offering, my son." Then the two of them walked on together."

What does Genesis 22:8 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Isaac and Abraham are walking together toward the spot where the sacrifice of a burnt offering will be made. Isaac has asked where the lamb is. Abraham now responds somewhat cryptically: God will provide for Himself the lamb. What Abraham does not tell Isaac is that God's command was for the sacrifice to be Isaac (Genesis 22:1–2).

Of course, Abraham's willingness to obey this command is not driven by blind faith or evil. Instead, Abraham seems convinced that God has some plan, behind the scenes, to make all things right. That fits perfectly with the experiences Abraham has had with God so far in his life: seemingly impossible situations working out to prove God's righteousness.

Given his response, we're left to wonder if Abraham imagines that God will indeed stop this and provide a literal lamb in some way. Or, does Abraham mean that God has provided Isaac as the lamb for Himself, referring to Isaac's miraculous birth? Or, that God has provided Isaac as the sacrifice but intends to raise him from the dead? We can't fully know. In any case, Abraham does not flinch in continuing to move toward fulfilling God's command. Judging by his actions, his faith in God's goodness, character, and power remain absolute.

Touchingly, Isaac's simple trust in his father also remains intact. A young man who can carry wood up a mountain could not be overpowered by an elderly man—when Isaac is bound on the altar, he has to allow it to happen (Genesis 22:9). The two obviously care for each other. Abraham continues to show his willingness to give to God this boy he loves, trusting the Lord to do what is right.