This message was preached by Sunith N via zoom Word of Grace Church, on September 15th 2020. For the audio please click here.
Today, we will look into the stories of Abraham, Sarai and Hagar
There is something we learn about them that we need to follow and something we omit.
Last but not the least we will see God’s bigger plan.
1. Sarai’s unwise decision.
Let’s read from Gen 16:1-4
We clearly see that Sarai makes a decision based on human intellect.
So firstly, we will try understanding what made her take this decision.
Gen 11:30 tells us that she cannot conceive (it is the truth about her at that instant)
This is the grief she has in her heart.
Therefore, there could be public shame/disgrace she might have faced.
How long was she in this phase after the first promise of God about children to Abraham?
It is 10 years, that is a long duration that she is carrying this burden.
She started doubting the promises of God.
Now, lets see what dangers does doubting the word of God lead to?
It leads to deceptive thought of the evil one and eventually we end up taking decision based on that thought.
What does the word tell us?
We are told that we need to take every thought captive to word of God.
Satan is just waiting for an opportunity to attack with lies, the way he deceived Eve.
Lastly, trust in the Lord and do not lean on your own understanding.
Reflect on your life
2. Now we will see how Abram (the Man of God) is carried away by her decision.
Let’s read Gen 16:2
Abraham agrees with Sarai’s decision.
We also see in Gen 3:6. A similar situation where Adam agrees to eat the fruit Eve offered.
So Abraham also fell into the trap of choosing an unwise human decision rather than standing up and telling Sarai that we need to trust in God and hold on to his promise.
We also can end up in similar situations in life.
What does the word of God tell us?
Carefully examine and test the decision based on the word of God.
Hagar’s trust and obedience to God’s word.
From Gen 16:1-6 we can understand how hopeless the situation is for Hagar.
Sometime earlier, when there was a famine in Canaan, Abe goes to Egypt. He becomes wealthy, acquires men and maidservants.
Hagar is one of the slave girls that he acquired for Sarai.
Being a slave means no choices, no freedom.
She also needs to live the consequence caused by an unwise decision of her mistress.
Sarai also treated her very harshly.
Crushed in her spirit, she ran away. She thought that there is no one who can understand her condition.
Then we see from Gen 16:7-15,
That God meets with her and calls her by name and makes a conversation.
He comforts her by saying that he saw and heard her cry of affliction.
This is the first time in biblical history that an angel appeared to a human and she is the first woman ever who named god.
She drew strength from God’s comfort.
He also said her to go back and submit to the same authority.
He also promised innumerous descendants to her through Ishmael.
We see how she trusts in God and quickly obeys his word. She goes back.
Dear friends, we have a God who sees and hears our cries. In addition, we have a God who is an Overcomer.
John 16:33 tells us about what Jesus has done for us.
God sent his only son Jesus to die for our sins. He was insulted, persecuted, blamed, died but he also resurrected and ascended to the right hand of God, the father.
He overcame the world.
I encourage all of us that we can submit our painful situations to Jesus and trust and obey him and he will give us the strength to overcome.
Just as Abraham was promised the land of inheritance, God also promised an eternal inheritance in heaven.
1pet 1 : 4-7
All we have to do is to trust him and obey him and he shields us with his power, strengthens us, and reward us.
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