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Current series in Galatians:


Monday, November 4, 2019

2019.11.04 Hopewell @Home ▫ Genesis 21:1-7

Questions from the Scripture text: Whom had Yahweh said that He would visit (Genesis 21:1a)? And for whom had Yahweh said that He would do something (verse 1b)? What had Sarah done in Genesis 21:2? What had set the time for this? What did Abraham call the name of his son in Genesis 21:3? Who had borne this son to him? Who had picked this name (cf. Genesis 17:9)? What did Abraham do to Isaac in Genesis 21:4? At what age (verse 4b)? Why do this at that age (verse 4c)? Whose age is highlighted in Genesis 21:5? How old was he? Who speaks in Genesis 21:6? Whom does she say has made her laugh? Whom else does she say that He is making to laugh? What question does she ask in Genesis 21:7? What answer to this question was already given in Genesis 21:1 and Genesis 21:2?
The verb translated “said” in Genesis 21:7 is not ordinarily used in telling history, like the ones in Genesis 21:1-2. It is almost always found in poetry, suggesting that Sarah is singing a joyous song of “Isaac” (literally, “laughter”!).

It also shares the consonants of the root for the word “circumcised” in Genesis 21:4, so that the play on words here is strong. The Lord’s promise—He is the One who “said” to Abraham that Sarah would have a child—had been set before Abraham in his own circumcision, and its fulfillment has been seen now in Isaac’s.

We are to find the Lord’s Word faithful. What He says, He will do. Exactly as He says, He will do. Exactly as He commands, we must do.

We are to find the Lord’s Word gladdening. The fact of the matter is that what God promises is to do infinite good to sinners, opposite what they deserve or are able, for the sake of His promise, and that Christ whom He has promised. As these promises come true, we are made to laugh with joy.

We are to find the Lord’s Word strengthened by His signs and strengthening to His signs. In connection with His covenant, God gave Abraham a physical sign that would direct him to look to God’s promise as his only hope for himself, and also as his only hope for his children. When God brings true part of what the sign shows, He also has that sign put upon Isaac—a sign for which Abraham now has an increased appreciation. Baptism and the Supper do this for us today. They remind us that it is for Christ’s sake, and by Christ’s life and power, that God has done us the good that we have received thus far. And that His future goodness to us rests securely upon that very same Christ.
What are past things Christ has done for you? What are future ones He has promised?
Suggested Songs: ARP23B “The Lord’s My Shepherd” or TPH517 “I Know Whom I Have Believed”

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