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Genesis 16:7-16

Talks for Growing Christians

The Lord Himself meets Hagar

Genesis 16:7-16

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Lesson Number 35

Background Notes

Doctrinal Point(s)

  1. God hears and sees the disadvantaged.
  2. God’s plans are not ruined by man’s mistakes.

Practical Application

  1. Don’t try to run away from your problems.

Questions

  1. Who was the angel of the Lord who found Hagar by the spring?
  2. What did the Lord tell Hagar about her son, Ishmael?
  3. How does Hagar fall into the category of the disadvantaged?
  4. How did God relate to Hagar when she was in the wilderness?
  5. Can God’s plans be ruined by man’s mistakes? Give an example from this portion of Scripture.
  6. What did God tell Hagar when she tried to run away from her problems?

Answers

  1. Most likely the angel was what was called a theophany or Christophany, that is, the Son of God in the Old Testament taking on the appearance of man.
  2. The Lord said that he would be a wild man. This is a good description of the Bedouins of the desert. They move freely in the wilderness and are a law unto themselves.
  3. She was taken advantage of by Abraham and Sarah; she was reduced from a maid servant to slave status (and that for following their orders). Her chances for marriage had been taken away in that culture, and she was treated harshly and forced to flee.
  4. God knew all about Hagar’s problems. He heard her cries and saw her situation. The Lord personally came to her to strengthen her and encourage her.
  5. No. God’s plans were to give Abraham and Sarah a son named Isaac. They made the mistake of rushing ahead of God and trying to help God out in their own way. As a result, Ishmael was born and there has been a lot of bad fallout, which continues today. But in spite of this, God’s plans were not ruined and Isaac, the child of promise, was eventually born.
  6. God told her to return and submit to Sarah. (Genesis 16:9)

Discuss/Consider

  1. Are there times when you feel disadvantaged and despondant? That someone has taken advantage of you? God sees and hears. Turn to Him.
  2. Have you made some mistakes? Perhaps you’ve rushed ahead of God. Maybe you are experiencing some bad fallout. Be encouraged, for God’s plans are not nullified by your mistakes.

Challenge

  1. Hagar tried to run away from her problems, but they were solved when she returned. Have you tried to run away from your problems? Consider Hagar. Face your problems and trust the Lord to give you the strength and courage to deal with them.

Key Verses

  • “The Angel of the Lord found Hagar by a spring of water in the wilderness. He said, ‘Return and submit. The Lord has heard your affliction.’“ Genesis 16:7-11
  • Hagar called the name of the Lord You-Are-the-God-Who-Sees.” Genesis 16:13

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