The Bible does not give us the age of Isaac when Abraham took him to the mountain in the land of Moriah.  However, we do have a few clues we can consider. We read in Genesis 22:5, “And Abraham said unto his YOUNG MEN, Abide ye here with the ass; and I and the LAD will go yonder and worship, and come again to you.”  The Hebrew word for YOUNG MEN and LAD is the same word, “naar.” It is translated as ‘child’ (Judges 13:24), and as ‘servant’ (1 Samuel 2:15).  This word seems to indicate someone who is very young, but also is used to represent a young person or someone old enough to be a servant.  Therefore, Genesis 22:5 does not give us a good indication of Isaac’s age, although these ‘young men’ were certainly old enough and responsible enough to take care of themselves and their animals while Abraham and Isaac were away from them. 

Genesis 22:5-6 says, “And Abraham said unto his young men, Abide ye here with the ass; and I and the lad will go yonder and worship, and come again to you. And Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering, and laid it upon Isaac his son; and he took the fire in his hand, and a knife; and they went both of them together.”  It is because the land was too steep and rocky that Abraham left the donkeys behind as he and Isaac travelled alone together.  This may indicate that Isaac was older because he could walk on this difficult trek.  Abraham put the wood of the offering upon Isaac.  This also may indicate that Isaac was a larger person, being able to carry the wood.  Here are a few thoughts from others:

  • Josephus was a first century Jewish historian.  He wrote, “Now Isaac was twenty-five years old.”
  • Jamison, Faussett, and Brown, who wrote a very credible commentary on the Bible wrote that Isaac was “then upwards of twenty years of age.”
  • Other commentators put Isaac’s age at between 18 and 33 years of age.

Let’s consider Genesis 22:7-8, “And Isaac spake unto Abraham his father, and said, My father: and he said, Here am I, my son. And he said, Behold the fire and the wood: but where is the lamb for a burnt offering? And Abraham said, My son, GOD WILL PROVIDE HIMSELF A LAMB for a burnt offering: so they went both of them together.”  Indeed, God has provided Himself a lamb.  The first words we read of John the Baptist are in John 1:29, “The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, BEHOLD THE LAMB OF GOD, which taketh away the sin of the world.”  Jesus is the lamb that God has provided.

The greatest lesson we receive from the account of Abraham offering his son, Isaac, is that it is a type, or illustration of how God gave His only begotten Son to die on the cross for sinners like you and me.  At the last minute, the Lord spared Isaac’s life (Genesis 9:10-13), but He did not spare the life of His dear Son.  We read in Romans 8:32, “He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?”  No, God did not spare His Son.  Rather, He poured out his wrath on Jesus’ holy head so that we might have forgiveness for our sins.  The Lord Jesus stood in our stead and received God’s wrath so that, through faith in Him and His finished work at Calvary, we might be saved.  

We don’t know how old Isaac was at that time, but we do know that if you put your faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, you can be saved right here and right now.  Romans 10:9 is clear, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.”  If you haven’t already, won’t you receive the Lord Jesus now as your savior and receive His free gift of eternal life?  (CC)  (554.2)