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Saturday, September 7, 2019

2019.09.07 Hopewell @Home ▫ Genesis 18:1-15

Questions from the Scripture text: Who appeared to Abraham in Genesis 18:1? By where? What was Abraham doing? Where? What time of day was it? What did Abraham lift in Genesis 18:2? What did he see? What did he do when he saw them? What did he do when he met them? What does he call the three men in Genesis 18:3? What does he ask Him/Them not to do? What does Abraham call himself? What does he propose to bring in Genesis 18:4? So they can do what? What does Abraham propose to bring in Genesis 18:5? To do what? What does he call himself again? In what manner did Abraham go to Sarah in Genesis 18:6? In what manner does he tell her to make cakes? In what manner did Abraham go to the herd in Genesis 18:7? What does he take? In what manner does he prepare it? What else does Abraham take in Genesis 18:8? What does he do as they eat? Who is speaking to him in Genesis 18:9? What do they ask? What does he answer? Who is speaking in Genesis 18:10? What does He say He will do? What does He say Sarah will have, when He returns? What was Sarah doing and where? What does Genesis 18:11 comment about Abraham and Sarah’s age? What point does it make about Sarah’s physical condition? What does Sarah do in Genesis 18:12? Where does she laugh? What does she ask? Who is speaking in Genesis 18:13? What does He ask? What further question does He ask in Genesis 18:14? What does He then repeat? Who answers in Genesis 18:15? Against Whom does she now argue? What does He do/say? 
The appearing of Yahweh in this passage is marvelous. That’s how Genesis 18:1 identifies Him. People get caught up on how the appearance was that of three men, and later two of the “men” are identified as “angels” (but we will see in chapter 19 that these angels are also Yahweh).

Certainly, Abraham seems to have a sense of who He is. He begins by addressing them in the singular (Genesis 18:3), and then in the plural (Genesis 18:4-5). It’s possible that he is addressing just one of them at first and then all of them afterward. But it’s probable that the reason he begins sprinting all over the place is because he has some understanding of the Triune God. He runs in Genesis 18:2. He hurries in Genesis 18:6. He runs to the herd in Genesis 18:7. He hastens to prepare the calf.

 But we don’t always respond to the Lord in a way that is appropriate to who He is. Genesis 18:10-11 sets us up for Genesis 18:12-15. Sarah is right behind the tent flap, and she is physically too old to have babies. Her laughter is not the rejoicing faith of Abraham’s laughter from chapter 17. That’s poor response number 1. The second response is even more amazing: she denies that she laughed! It’s one thing to laugh within yourself. It’s another to start an argument with the Lord. But we often respond to Him poorly—and then follow it up by reasoning within ourselves how our response was not really so bad as it appeared.

Still, Sarah’s response doesn’t derail God’s plans to use her. He is not treating her according to what she deserves, but according to the worthiness of Christ, who will eventually come from her. Praise be to the God of grace!

What sin have you been ignoring, hiding, or excusing before God?

Suggested songs: ARP32AB “What Blessedness” or TPH234 “The God of Abraham Praise”

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