Abraham was Jesus’ great, great, great... grandfather. Isaac was Abraham’s son, and therefore listed next in the Lord’s family tree.
Isaac is famous for his birth. He was the son of promise, born when his dad was 100 years-old and his mom was 90 years-old. He was a miracle baby!
And Isaac is famous for being the father of Jacob and his twin brother, Esau. Jacob, later called Israel, became the father of twelve sons, and thus the Twelve Tribes.
So, what’s so great about Isaac? Actually, not much!
I suppose that Isaac is also famous for his worship experience on Mt. Moriah. Abraham obediently laid Isaac upon the altar as a willing sacrifice, but God provided a substitute lamb. The innocent lamb was killed so that Isaac could live.
But Isaac wasn’t a great warrior or a great kingdom-builder. He had a famous dad and a famous son. He’s a bridge in the narrative between generations. He was Abraham’s son and Jacob’s dad.
Isaac is listed in the genealogy of Jesus, not because he was great, but because God is faithful!
He’s listed in the genealogy because God kept the promise He made to Abraham. “I will make you into a great nation, I will bless you, I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, I will curse anyone who treats you with contempt, and all the peoples on earth will be blessed through you” (Genesis 12:2–3, CSB).
God later renewed that promise directly to Isaac. “I will be with you and bless you. For I will give all these lands to you and your offspring, and I will confirm the oath that I swore to your father Abraham. I will make your offspring as numerous as the stars of the sky, I will give your offspring all these lands, and all the nations of the earth will be blessed by your offspring” (Genesis 26:3–5, CSB).
Yes! God was faithful! He blessed Abraham and Isaac by allowing them to play a role in the eternal story of our salvation. It was through their bloodline that the Royal Redeemer, Jesus, was born.
So far, in our study of Jesus’ ancestors, we haven’t found any super-heroes. We’ve seen that Abraham and Isaac were listed in the genealogy because of God’s grace and faithfulness.
And so it is with each of God’s children. With Jesus as the central character, we play only a small supporting role in the epic adventures of our King’s great rescue of His fallen and failing creation.