Abraham believed God. “And he believed in the Lord; and he counted it to him for righteousness.” (Genesis 15:6)
This week we will look at the life of Abraham. We will look at Abraham’s call, God’s covenants, Abraham’s lack of faith and his faithfulness.
ABRAHAM’S LACK OF FAITH
God promised Abraham a child. Abraham and Sarah were unwilling to wait on God’s timing. What they did was acceptable in the culture of the day. However, God already told him He would supply their child. A natural born child.
Abram failed to believe God would keep His promise
Now Sarai Abram’s wife bare him no children: and she had an handmaid, an Egyptian, whose name was Hagar.2 And Sarai said unto Abram, Behold now, the Lord hath restrained me from bearing: I pray thee, go in unto my maid; it may be that I may obtain children by her. And Abram hearkened to the voice of Sarai.3 And Sarai Abram’s wife took Hagar her maid the Egyptian, after Abram had dwelt ten years in the land of Canaan, and gave her to her husband Abram to be his wife.4 And he went in unto Hagar, and she conceived: and when she saw that she had conceived, her mistress was despised in her eyes.5 And Sarai said unto Abram, My wrong be upon thee: I have given my maid into thy bosom; and when she saw that she had conceived, I was despised in her eyes: the Lord judge between me and thee. (Genesis 16:1-5)
And the angel of the Lord found her by a fountain of water in the wilderness, by the fountain in the way to Shur.8 And he said, Hagar, Sarai’s maid, whence camest thou? and whither wilt thou go? And she said, I flee from the face of my mistress Sarai.9 And the angel of the Lord said unto her, Return to thy mistress, and submit thyself under her hands.10 And the angel of the Lord said unto her, I will multiply thy seed exceedingly, that it shall not be numbered for multitude.11 And the angel of the Lord said unto her, Behold, thou art with child and shalt bear a son, and shalt call his name Ishmael; because the Lord hath heard thy affliction.12 And he will be a wild man; his hand will be against every man, and every man’s hand against him; and he shall dwell in the presence of all his brethren. (Genesis 16:7-12)
And as for Ishmael, I have heard thee: Behold, I have blessed him, and will make him fruitful, and will multiply him exceedingly; twelve princes shall he beget, and I will make him a great nation.21 But my covenant will I establish with Isaac, which Sarah shall bear unto thee at this set time in the next year. (Genesis 17: 20-21)
And Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian, which she had born unto Abraham, mocking.10 Wherefore she said unto Abraham, Cast out this bondwoman and her son: for the son of this bondwoman shall not be heir with my son, even with Isaac.11 And the thing was very grievous in Abraham’s sight because of his son.12 And God said unto Abraham, Let it not be grievous in thy sight because of the lad, and because of thy bondwoman; in all that Sarah hath said unto thee, hearken unto her voice; for in Isaac shall thy seed be called. (Genesis 21:9-12)
Abraham failed to believe that God would provide for him a natural born son. He took matters into his own hands and we are living with the consequences of his lack of faith today.
Ishmael fathered the enemies of Israel. They are still fighting today.
When God makes a promise, He keeps His promises! When we fail to wait patiently for the fulfillment, we fail to obey, trust, and believe in God. That is sin.
We need to obey God’s word and wait patiently on Him.
Tom Stearns, WASI Chaplain, 907 715-4001