Daily Devotional Friday 15th January 2021by William Moody
Sarai and Hagar
16:1 Now Sarai, Abram’s wife, had borne him no children. She had a female Egyptian servant whose name was Hagar. 2 And Sarai said to Abram, “Behold now, the LORD has prevented me from bearing children. Go in to my servant; it may be that I shall obtain children1 by her.” And Abram listened to the voice of Sarai. 3 So, after Abram had lived ten years in the land of Canaan, Sarai, Abram’s wife, took Hagar the Egyptian, her servant, and gave her to Abram her husband as a wife. 4 And he went in to Hagar, and she conceived. And when she saw that she had conceived, she looked with contempt on her mistress.2 5 And Sarai said to Abram, “May the wrong done to me be on you! I gave my servant to your embrace, and when she saw that she had conceived, she looked on me with contempt. May the LORD judge between you and me!” 6 But Abram said to Sarai, “Behold, your servant is in your power; do to her as you please.” Then Sarai dealt harshly with her, and she fled from her.
7 The angel of the LORD found her by a spring of water in the wilderness, the spring on the way to Shur. 8 And he said, “Hagar, servant of Sarai, where have you come from and where are you going?” She said, “I am fleeing from my mistress Sarai.” 9 The angel of the LORD said to her, “Return to your mistress and submit to her.” 10 The angel of the LORD also said to her, “I will surely multiply your offspring so that they cannot be numbered for multitude.” 11 And the angel of the LORD said to her,
“Behold, you are pregnant
and shall bear a son.
You shall call his name Ishmael,3
because the LORD has listened to your affliction.
12 He 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.”
13 So she called the name of the LORD who spoke to her, “You are a God of seeing,”4 for she said, “Truly here I have seen him who looks after me.”5 14 Therefore the well was called Beer-lahai-roi;6 it lies between Kadesh and Bered.
15 And Hagar bore Abram a son, and Abram called the name of his son, whom Hagar bore, Ishmael. 16 Abram was eighty-six years old when Hagar bore Ishmael to Abram.
Hebrew be built up, which sounds like the Hebrew for children
Hebrew her mistress was dishonorable in her eyes; similarly in verse 5
Ishmael means God hears
Or You are a God who sees me
Hebrew Have I really seen him here who sees me? or Would I have looked here for the one who sees me?
Beer-lahai-roi means the well of the Living One who sees me
Abram and Sarai were growing impatient as they waited for God’s promises to be fulfilled, so they take matters into their own hands (v1-4).
The end does not justify the means and there is never any excuse for God’s people acting outside of God’s will. We need to be careful, if God is not answering our prayers as quickly as we desire, that we do not take matters into our own hands. An example of this would be a young Christian waiting for a Christian life partner, deciding to date unbelievers. Another example would be a church not seeing people come in change to unbiblical forms of worship to attract people.
Waiting is not easy but we need to pray for God’s grace to strengthen our faith as we wait for God to move in power. God’s timing is always perfect.
The result of Sarai and Abram doing things their own way was friction and unhappiness (v4b-5). We must always remember that we are never wiser than God and never wiser that God’s Word.
Prayerfully consider if you are living your life according to God’s word or according to God’s wisdom.
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