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Saturday, August 10 2013

Genesis 21: The Birth of Isaac and The Expulsion Of Hagar

Isaac and Ishmael were both legitimate sons of Abraham. Their births were both prophetic, with the LORD (i.e. Jesus Christ; see Genesis 1: In The Beginning Was The Word and The Kingdom Of The LORD God; see also The Forerunner Of Man and Of God) even naming both of them, with a promise of blessing to each of them.


"16:10 And the angel of the LORD said unto her, I will multiply thy seed exceedingly, that it shall not be numbered for multitude. 16:11 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. 16:12 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.

16:13 And she called the name of the LORD that spake unto her, Thou God seest me: for she said, Have I also here looked after him that seeth me? 16:14 Wherefore the well was called Beerlahairoi; behold, it is between Kadesh and Bered.

16:15 And Hagar bare Abram a son: and Abram called his son's name, which Hagar bare, Ishmael." (Genesis 16:10-15 KJV)

Isaac, with the additional purpose of the Messianic line.

Hagar and Ishmael

"17:18 And Abraham said unto God, O that Ishmael might live before thee!

17:19 And God said, Sarah thy wife shall bear thee a son indeed; and thou shalt call his name Isaac: and I will establish my covenant with him for an everlasting covenant, and with his seed after him.

17:20 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.

17:21 But my covenant will I establish with Isaac, which Sarah shall bear unto thee at this set time in the next year." (Genesis 17:18-21 KJV)

Ismael was born to Hagar (see Genesis 16: The LORD's Seed Promise To Hagar) about fourteen years before Isaac was born to Sarah.

"21:1 And the LORD visited Sarah as he had said, and the LORD did unto Sarah as he had spoken. 21:2 For Sarah conceived, and bare Abraham a son in his old age, at the set time of which God had spoken to him. 21:3 And Abraham called the name of his son that was born unto him, whom Sarah bare to him, Isaac. 21:4 And Abraham circumcised his son Isaac being eight days old, as God had commanded him. 21:5 And Abraham was an hundred years old, when his son Isaac was born unto him.

21:6 And Sarah said, God hath made me to laugh, so that all that hear will laugh with me. 21:7 And she said, Who would have said unto Abraham, that Sarah should have given children suck? for I have born him a son in his old age." (Genesis 21:1-7 KJV)

The tension between Sarah and Hagar was longstanding. It reached an intolerable level, for Sarah, after Isaac was born.

"21:8 And the child grew, and was weaned: and Abraham made a great feast the same day that Isaac was weaned. 21:9 And Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian, which she had born unto Abraham, mocking. 21:10 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." (Genesis 21:8-10 KJV)

Notice that the demand to drive away Hagar and Ishmael "was very grievous in Abraham's sight because of his son." Abraham had a very different view of his family than his family later developed for themselves - most particularly, that there were no "Jews and gentiles" in the time of Abraham. By the modern-day definition, Abraham would be a "gentile" - a word that simply means a nation of people, but which today has come to be used for nations other than the nation of Judah (i.e. Jews are "gentiles" in the sense that they are a nation, just like any other nation). Nevertheless, Abraham agreed to the expulsion of Hagar and Ishmael because the LORD told him that He would care for Ishmael, because Ishmael was a son of Abraham too: "And also of the son of the bondwoman will I make a nation, because he is thy seed."

"21:11 And the thing was very grievous in Abraham's sight because of his son.

21:12 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. 21:13 And also of the son of the bondwoman will I make a nation, because he is thy seed." (Genesis 21:11-13 KJV)

Abraham apparently understood that the LORD would care and supply for them immediately (which He did) - the reason that Abraham sent Hagar, to her dismay, out into the vast Negev desert with only enough water for barely one day.

"21:14 And Abraham rose up early in the morning, and took bread, and a bottle of water, and gave it unto Hagar, putting it on her shoulder, and the child, and sent her away: and she departed, and wandered in the wilderness of Beersheba.

21:15 And the water was spent in the bottle, and she cast the child under one of the shrubs. 21:16 And she went, and sat her down over against him a good way off, as it were a bowshot: for she said, Let me not see the death of the child. And she sat over against him, and lift up her voice, and wept." (Genesis 21:14-16 KJV)

The LORD did immediately care for Hagar and Ishmael.


"21:17 And God heard the voice of the lad; and the angel of God called to Hagar out of heaven, and said unto her, What aileth thee, Hagar? fear not; for God hath heard the voice of the lad where he is. 21:18 Arise, lift up the lad, and hold him in thine hand; for I will make him a great nation.

21:19 And God opened her eyes, and she saw a well of water; and she went, and filled the bottle with water, and gave the lad drink." (Genesis 21:17-19 KJV)

"And God was with the lad; and he grew." When he reached adulthood, Hagar found a wife for Ishmael from her own people in Egypt (two of the Israelite patriarchs, Ephraim and Manasseh, later also had an Egyptian mother; see also Jacob's Blessing Of Ephraim And Manasseh).

"21:20 And God was with the lad; and he grew, and dwelt in the wilderness, and became an archer. 21:21 And he dwelt in the wilderness of Paran: and his mother took him a wife out of the land of Egypt." (Genesis

The early history of Beersheba, and the wells there (from which "Beersheba" is named), are directly a result of the presence of Hagar and Abraham (see the Fact Finder question below).

"21:22 And it came to pass at that time, that Abimelech and Phichol the chief captain of his host spake unto Abraham, saying, God is with thee in all that thou doest: 21:23 Now therefore swear unto me here by God that thou wilt not deal falsely with me, nor with my son, nor with my son's son: but according to the kindness that I have done unto thee, thou shalt do unto me, and to the land wherein thou hast sojourned.

21:24 And Abraham said, I will swear.

21:25 And Abraham reproved Abimelech because of a well of water, which Abimelech's servants had violently taken away. 21:26 And Abimelech said, I wot not who hath done this thing: neither didst thou tell me, neither yet heard I of it, but to day.

21:27 And Abraham took sheep and oxen, and gave them unto Abimelech; and both of them made a covenant. 21:28 And Abraham set seven ewe lambs of the flock by themselves. 21:29 And Abimelech said unto Abraham, What mean these seven ewe lambs which thou hast set by themselves?

21:30 And he said, For these seven ewe lambs shalt thou take of my hand, that they may be a witness unto me, that I have digged this well.

21:31 Wherefore he called that place Beersheba; because there they sware both of them.

21:32 Thus they made a covenant at Beersheba: then Abimelech rose up, and Phichol the chief captain of his host, and they returned into the land of the Philistines. 21:33 And Abraham planted a grove in Beersheba, and called there on the name of the LORD, the everlasting God. 21:34 And Abraham sojourned in the Philistines' land many days." (Genesis 21:22-34 KJV)

Fact Finder: How were Hagar and Abraham involved in the founding of Beersheba?
See The Wells Of Beersheba

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This Day In History, August 10

410: Alaric the Visigoth captured Rome.

757: Aethelbald, king of the Mercians from 716, died. He became a chief king of a confederation including all of the Anglo-Saxon (Saxony is in Germany; the Anglos were a tribe of the Saxons) kingdoms between the Humber River and the English Channel. By 736, he was signing himself as the "king of Britain."

955: King Otto I of Germany, the "Holy Roman Emperor" (see The Holy Roman Empire Of The German Nation), defeated the Magyars at the Battle of Lechfeld, ending a half-century Magyar invasions of central Europe.

Central Europe

1519: Ferdinand Magellan's 5 ships set sail to circumnavigate the Earth.

1557: The French army lost more than 14,000 men when they tried to block a Spanish army under Count Egmont at the Battle of Saint Quentin in the Spanish-French Wars. The Spaniards lost just 50.

1582: Russia ended its 25-year war with Poland.

1627: France's Cardinal Richelieu began the siege of the Huguenot fortress at La Rochelle with royal troops.

1675: The foundation stone of the Royal Observatory was laid at Greenwich in south London by order of King Charles II to improve knowledge of the positions of stars and thus aid navigation. John Flamsteed became the first Astronomer Royal.

1792: King Louis XVI of France was arrested after a mob stormed the Tuileries in Paris.

1804: Francis II became emperor of Austria-Hungary.

1846: The Smithsonian Institution was established in Washington as a center for scientific research. It was created from funds at the bequest of British scientist James Smithson.

1876: Alexander Graham Bell made the world's first "long distance" telephone call, from Brantford to Paris, Ontario, Canada, a distance of 8 miles. Bell spoke with his father, Melville, and the conversation lasted 3 hours (Daily Bible Study is written about 10 miles from the Bell Homestead in Brantford, which is now a museum).

1911: The House of Lords in Great Britain gave up its veto power, making the House of Commons the more powerful House.

1913: The Treaty of Bucharest ended the Second Balkan War.

1920: The Treaty of Sevres was signed between Turkey and the Allied powers after the First World War, relieving Turkey of much of the land ruled by the Ottoman Empire (listen to our sermons The Ottoman Empire and The European World Wars).

1954: A ground-breaking ceremony was held at Cornwall, Ontario and Massena, New York, officially starting the St. Lawrence Seaway project. Construction of the 3,790 km. waterway took 5 years and opened Canadian and U.S. ports on the Great Lakes to ocean traffic.

1961: The first use of the extremely toxic and carcinogenic defoliant "Agent Orange" (manufactured primarily by Monsanto Corporation and Dow Chemical) by the U.S. military during the Vietnam War. By the end of the war, during which 20 million gallons of the chemical was sprayed across the country, it resulted in approximately 400,000 Vietnamese civilian deaths (apart from the thousands of U.S. troops and air crews who inadvertently poisoned themselves and their fellow troops on the ground with it) and 500,000 Vietnamese children born with severe birth defects.

1964: Pope Paul VI issued his first encyclical, Ecclesiam Suam, which stated his willingness to "mediate" in international disputes.

1966: A daylight meteor was seen from the northern U.S. to Canada. It was the only documented case of a meteor entering the Earth's atmosphere and leaving it again.

1977: In Yonkers, New York, David Berkowitz, a 24-year-old postal employee, was arrested for the "Son of Sam" killings in the New York City.

1993: A magnitude 7.0 earthquake struck the South Island of New Zealand.

2003: A temperature of 38.5 Celsius (101.3 Fahrenheit) became the highest ever recorded in the United Kingdom - the first time over 38 C. / 100 F.

2003: Russian cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko became the first person to marry in space. His wife was on earth, 240 miles below.


Copyright © Wayne Blank