Walk 9 – Read Genesis Chapters 21 through 24. The Theme is: The birth of Isaac; the rejection of Ishmael; the sacrifice of Isaac; the death of Sarah; and the marriage of Isaac.
Abraham was 100 years old when Isaac was born and his wife Sarah was 90. These 4 chapters account the events of 40 years in the life of Isaac but about 80 years of waiting in the life of Abraham. Abram had first heard the call of God in Ur of the Chaldeans and was now witnessing the fulfillment of that promise.
Events of Life
Sometimes life happens. We live from day to day with our hearts turned to follow after God; just as Abraham watched and waited for the events of life to unfold. A great joy had come into his life at the birth of Isaac. Yet the controversy continued between Sarah and Hagar and Sarah finally insisted that Hagar and Ishmael be sent away. His heart was heavy but he also heard the voice of God and trusted God to make of Ishmael a great nation. It is difficult to see what God needs to take away in order to bring about His plans and purpose.
As the events of life happen we must interact with our enemies as well as our friends. As Abraham became wealthy his flocks and herds strained the resources of the territory of the Philistines. Abraham needed to deal wisely with Abimelech and the commander of his army regarding contention over a well of water. When we ask God for wisdom He will freely show us the wisest way.
In this story there are several prophetic words spoken:
- “We will worship and then we will come back to you.” (22: 5)
- “God himself will provide the lamb for the burnt offering, my son.” (22: 8)
- “So Abraham called that place The Lord Will Provide.” (22: 14)
Naturally, we cling to the promises of God; but only by laying them down do we keep them.
Death of Sarah
God had promised that Sarah would be the “mother of nations.” She was the only woman in scripture whose age was given at the time of her death. For me, I see in that fact God honoring Sarah and the revelation of the gentleness of God. Grief, mourning, and an intimate picture of family life are revealed.
I am a man of the west; but I am sure that ten camels can drink an awesome amount of water. Yet, Rebecca filled her jar from the well until the camels were satisfied. God had been faithful to Abraham and was faithful to the quest of his servant who was sent to Bethuel, Abraham’s cousin. It seemed appropriate, this close to the flood, for Abraham to be married to the daughter of his father’s second wife and for Isaac and later Jacob to be married to their cousins.