The plan is simple.
- Read through the book of Genesis, ONE CHAPTER A DAY.
- Restate 5 things you learned (that you previously didn't know).
- Ask 5 questions about the chapter that you'll ponder all week.
- As the Holy Spirit gives you wisdom and insight, ACT ON IT.
INSIGHT 1: In a culture where a woman's identity is so closely linked to her ability to bear a child, Sarah's insecurities are apparently starting to ooze. Her statement in verse 2, "..the Lord has prevented me from bearing children" read like a sentiment coming out of a place of frustration (and possibly anger at God?)
INSIGHT 2: The fact that "The Angel of the Lord" (a God of seeing) "found" Hagar, and didn't just abandon her to fend for herself, shows that not only is nothing hidden from God, but that God always watches over His own and is a God "..who sees me with understanding and compassion." (verse 13 - AMP)
INSIGHT 3: The promise of the Angel of the Lord to Hagar in verse 10, “I will surely multiply your offspring so that they cannot be numbered for multitude” sounds similar to the promise God made to Abram in Genesis 15:4-5 (which rings true to the promise of Genesis 12). Whoever blesses Abram will be blesses! Though Sarah's actions were unwise, God still blessed Hagar because He always remind true to HIS word (even when we exert great effort in trying to screw it up!).
INSIGHT 4: There is no heartache or painful circumstance in my life that God does not see. Like Hagar, at the forefront of my mind MUST always be the encouraging reminder that my God is a God "who sees me" [with understanding and compassion].
INSIGHT 5: Abram's passiveness in heeding his wife's unwise request and his acquiescence to her complaint about Hagar brings to mind Adam's yielding of his role as "head of the home", guardian, and leader in the family - Genesis 3:6. Both of these accounts resulted in great complications and difficulty, not only for Abram and Adam, but also for the generations that would follow - v.12 "...shall be a wild donkey of a man, his hand against everyone and everyone's hand against him, and he shall dwell over against all his kinsmen."
INSIGHT 6: The Angel of the Lord is a peculiar figure in the Old Testament accounts. When He speaks, He speaks as One with the authority of God. So, either this Angel is God Himself (appearing as an angel), or he is the pre-incarnate 2nd person of the Holy Trinity - Jesus Christ (who often spoke with the authority of God and claimed to be God). The other option is that this angel is an esteemed high ranking angel commissioned to speak directly as God's representative.
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QUESTION 1: Should the multiplication of Hagar's offspring (v.11-12) be viewed as a blessing or a curse?
QUESTION 2: Did Abram "settle" when Ishmael was born? Did he assume Ishmael was the plan?
QUESTION 3: In light of such a vivid visual illustration God gave Abram in the previous chapter, why did Abram so easily disregard God's promise and yield to "listen to the voice of Sarah?"
QUESTION 4: Why would Ishmael be against everyone? (Was he chosen to fill this role as a judgment for Abram's indiscretion or is this simply Ishmael fulfilling what he would become?)
QUESTION 5: Had Abram communicated to Sarah all God had said and showed him in Genesis 15? If he had, might this have strengthened Sarah's faith so that she didn't end up proposing the plan in chapter 16?
Husband. Dad. Pastor. Nigerian American. Storyteller. Aspiring Prayer Warrior. Steak Lover. Follower of Jesus Christ reminding you that God the Father still loves you.