Genesis 22:18: The nations blessed because of Abraham's obedience?

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JTB.SDG

Puritan Board Junior
Genesis 22:18 says, "In your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice."

What does Reformed literature say about this connection between Abraham's obedience and blessing coming to the nations? Is this one verse that Catholics use to argue that God fulfills his promises to us in and through BOTH our faith AND our obedience?

The same thought is repeated to Isaac in 26:4-5. But here, the Lord promises to bless Isaac and the nations--not because of Isaac's obedience--but again, because of the obedience of Abraham.

It seems to me the best/only way to think of this is Abraham as a type of Christ. Just like Noah was a member of the Covenant of Grace, yet also in some ways a type of the Head of the Covenant of Grace (IE, Genesis 7:1, his whole household is saved b/c he alone is righteous), so it is here with Abraham; he is set forth as a type of Christ and the truth that the nations will be blessed because of the obedience of another; IE, their covenant head (cf. Rom.5). Waltke notes this, and there is a reference to it in the Spirit of the Reformation Study Bible, but I'm really interested to know if this thinking has deeper roots in Puritan/Reformed literature, and what other thoughts have been put out there.
 
Is this one verse that Catholics use to argue that God fulfills his promises to us in and through BOTH our faith AND our obedience?
I guess that's worse than pitting James against Paul; it's pitting Moses (ch.15) against Moses (ch.22).

It is faith that impels Abraham his whole way along, not expectation of reward, see. Heb.11:17-19. God simply crowns Abraham's faith, with its attendant work.

Calvin:
If Abraham deserved a compensation so great, on account of his own virtue, the grace of God, which anticipated him, will be of none effect. Therefore, in order that the truth of God, founded upon his gratuitous kindness, may stand firm, we must of necessity conclude, that what is freely given, is yet called the reward of works. Not that God would obscure the glory of his goodness, or in any way diminish it; but only that he may excite his own people to the love of well-doing, when they perceive that their acts of duty are so far pleasing to him, as to obtain a reward; while yet he pays nothing as a debt, but gives to his own benefits the title of a reward. And in this there is no inconsistency. For the Lord here shows himself doubly liberal; in that he, wishing to stimulate us to holy living, transfers to our works what properly belongs to his pure beneficence.

Perhaps another point to note is that the word rendered "obeyed" here (not that he failed to obey) is "hearkened." He heard and he believed (that Isaac would be raised from the dead, Heb.11:19), and his faith bore fruit in obedience.

It may be worth pointing out further, that absent the engagement of Abraham's will and his whole life, including his supreme test of faith, then that promise from the Lord, ch.12, falls to the ground. It is because he believes--with consequent fruit of obedience--that he BECOMES the father of many nations. The last blessing does not flow from his obedience (but rather from divine election by the instrument of faith); still he and his descendants come to the blessing by no other beginning but his obedience.
 
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