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Genesis 16:1-18:15

It is always interesting how each time I read thought a passage something different jumps out at me. So here goes. The follow verses from Proverbs came to my mind as I read today’s readings:

Under three things the earth is disquieted, and under four it cannot bear up: Under a servant when he reigns, a [empty-headed] fool when he is filled with food, An unloved and repugnant woman when she is married, and a maidservant when she supplants her mistress.
(Proverbs 30:21-23 AMP)

Leaving behind all the opinions about Sari finding a surrogate, Hagar, to carry her husband’s seed, according to the writer of Proverbs, Hagar, Sari’s “maidservant,” may have either tacitly or directly challenged her mistress’ authority. If the writer of the above three verses is correct in his assessment, than Hagar may have been making the ground shake, so to speak. She had produced for Abram what Sari couldn’t. She had been intimate with another woman’s husband, even if that woman initiated and facilitated the act. Talk about one-upmanship.

We are a funny folk. We counsel people and when they received and act on that counsel and it goes awry, we distance ourselves from the consequences. Sari presented her handmaiden to her husband in an attempt to “work” God’s promise to her husband, or had Abram kept the promise to himself? Hmmm. (If Sari knew that God has given a promise of a child to Him, why whould she have laughed when the angel spoke to her husband? Or could she have thought the Promise was to her husband and not to her? That’s a whole ‘nother essay.) Either way, she turned on the one she gave counsel too, her husband. Abram heard the counsel but didn’t have to receive it. How many times do we accept someone’s counsel without considering what is being said just to make the person happy. When it blows up in our faces, if we go back to the person who was so generous with their ideas, what usually is the reception we received?

Every one of us is responsible for your own choices no matter how strong the pressure to accept that advice. Bottom line is this: Not only will we have to serve our choices, but those we are responsible for, those under our leadership at home, work or church, will feel the effects. Abram’s relationship with Hagar was of the flesh. That which is born of the flesh is flesh. It is only the things born of the Spirit that will last. My prayer for all those who come to his Blog, myself included, is this: That we consider the consequences of our choices. May all here evaluate their decisions, are they of the flesh or of the spirit. All things of the “flesh” lead to death. Let us go on to live in Life. Let us stop producing Ishmaels in our lives.

Grace and peace,
Ramona

Yes, let us produce life and stop living Ishmaels in our lives. Good commentary Ramona!

Comments from me and QOTD: Prayer: I pray mainly by journaling. I pray and talk to Jesus in the car. I pray as I scroll social media, there are several ways.

Gen 16:1-18:15
Now this was a lesson in patienc3e and timing and trying to help God out. How many times have we tried in our own efforts to fulfill what God alone said he would do. Well, this "help" is going to cost big time and last for years to come.
When things don't go as we like, (it was Sarai's idea to have her Egyptian servant sleep with her husband). What I can't get is there was no dialogue with God, no, "let's pray, lets consult God on this. nothing!
It's sad to me that the maid servant had more dialogue from God and prayer life than her masters- hmmm.
And the choices that were made to and for this woman and bringing this childe in who is not chosen, not receiving the blessing, or inheritance of what the Lord promised Abram 10 years earlier-it does make you feel bad for Hagar and her son.
The 2nd Abrahamic covenant -God is promising to be his God and give lots of children and descendents. First must get circumcised which he and household and servants do today!! Abram's name is about to change -he is getting a new identity

So God remembered Abram, and God laid out that responsibility , laid out to obey the terms of the covenant was all he was supposed to do.
But I like how Abram who is now Abraham still wanted to know about his son Ishmael. Abraham truly thought Sara was carrying out Gods will and thought maybe Ishmael might be the chosen descendent and be blessed with inheritance. The was like, "I hear ya Abram, bc you asked, I'll bless Ishmael" But the inheritance and convenant is made between you and Sarah and her egg and your seed and descendent not a surragates seed.. (paraphrase)...I truly believe that is why we have so much grief in our world with the races right now stems from the Hagar,Abram, Sarai issue..and why God said and these two shall become one and the covenant was between one man and his wife from his youth.. Amen!

Genesis 16
In this text we often tend to overlook Ishmael and his descendants. There is definitely a belief that In Islam, Ishmael is regarded as a prophet and an ancestor to Muhammad. That also means Muhammad came from the progeny of Abraham through Ishmael .
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ishmael_in_Islam
I like what Bob Deffinbaugh says in his commentary: Ishmael’s descendants, too, will be too numerous to count (16:10; cf. 13:16; 15:5). From him will come princes and rulers (17:20). That which might seem a curse was perhaps Hagar’s greatest comfort. Ishmael would live a free lifestyle, unrestricted, unfettered, and a thorn in the flesh of his brothers (16:12). To Hagar, the afflicted slave of Sarai, this was a source of hope and comfort. Even under the cruel hand of her mistress, one can almost hear Hagar mumbling under her breath, “Just wait, Sarai.”

Isn't that prophetic!

Mathew 6
The Radical Jesus. I really like the way Jesus points out the importance of looking inside ourselves rather than the outside. He says it 3X with 3 different topics, so it must be very important! I like the three areas of our lives that he looks at and how quiet, in secret and unknowing they are to be.
1. Giving. What we do with our material things is evidence of how we value spiritual things. I like the phrase "anonymous donor".
2. Prayer. The Lord's Prayer is really a perfect template for our own prayers. I've heard intercessory prayer is the most powerful of all prayer.
3. Fasting or "appetite denying discipline" is a real challenge for me because I love food.

Well I don't really write down what to pray on but mostly end my prayers with the Lord's prayer and also psalm 23

Well I don't really write down what to pray on but mostly end my prayers with the Lord's prayer and also psalm 23

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