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Part 1 - Genesis 16:1-6 - FORGET IT! I'LL DO IT MYSELF!

(72)

Sermon shared by Ross Cochrane

April 2010
Summary: In my arrogance and indignation I have said in effect, "FORGET IT LORD, I'LL DO IT MYSELF!" GOD'S TIMETABLE IS OFTEN NOT MY TIMETABLE. It is not Him that needs to change.
Series: Genesis
Audience: General adults
Sermon:
Part 1 - Genesis 16:1-6 - FORGET IT! I'LL DO IT MYSELF!

I remember seeing some shorts to a movie once where a millionaire agrees to pay a couple a million dollars if the wife will sleep with him for one night. What would you do? The answer to that question tests your character. Impatience is often willing to sleep with the enemy to achieve it's purposes. The devil seeks to thwart the purposes of God through our impatience. Impatience sucks faith into a void and I am left grappling with worldly ways of doing things. Impatience is not one of the fruits of the Spirit, but PATIENCE is, and Sarai needed this fruit of the Spirit in Genesis 16:2 (NLT) before she opened her mouth. "... Sarai said to Abram, "The Lord has prevented me from having children. Go and sleep with my servant. Perhaps I can have children through her.""

Genesis 16 starts off with Sarai BLAMING GOD for preventing her from having children. She doesn't mention that God has promised her descendents too numerous to count. In her impatience she has conveniently FORGOTTEN GOD'S PROMISES. Ever prayed about something for a long time without seeing an answer, and got impatient with God. In your arrogance and indignation you said, "FORGET IT LORD, I'LL DO IT MYSELF!" What makes it worse is that God has actually given them a promise and Sarai's impatience has prevented her from waiting to see it fulfilled. Strange how GOD'S TIMETABLE IS OFTEN NOT MY TIMETABLE.

Then it moves from blame to a SINFUL PROPOSAL -polygamy and an attempt at what I call surrogacy through adultery. Surrogacy is where a woman (Hagar in this case) agrees to become pregnant and deliver a child for someone else (Sarai). In Abram's time there's no implanting of embryos. He sleeps with Hagar! Sure this was an accepted practise of the time, but it's not God's plan. Marriage under God is the voluntary union for life of one man and one woman, to the exclusion of all others.

Sarai says, "Go sleep with another woman!" What wife advocates this? "And Abram agreed with Sarai's proposal." (Genesis 16:2) What husband agrees to this? Anything to do with sex seems to make a man agreeable, and this probably seemed like a good deal to Abram.

Even if your wife gives you permission to commit adultery, it is still wrong in God's eyes and it indicates to me that Abram has come to be indifferent concerning the purposes of God for his life and lacks self-control. Instead, in effect he says "Whatever!" to anything his wife tells him to do. What was Abram thinking?

Eve gives fruit to Adam. He didn't have to take it, but he said "Whatever!" and ate. Abram didn't have to agree to sleep with Hagar, but he says "Whatever!" and sleeps with her. There are consequences to such choices.

When Hagar becomes pregnant and begins treating Sarai with contempt, Sarai blames Abram. Of course she is right! Sarai says in a fit of rage "The Lord will show who's wrong - you or me!" (Genesis 16:5). What is she getting at? This seems a strange thing to say, even if she is being unreasonable. THIS WAS ALL HER IDEA! No-one asked God about all this! They just went ahead and in their impatience sought to answer the problem of no children in their own way. Now there are consequences.

MY MOTIVE MAY BE RIGHT BUT MY METHODS OF ACHIEVING GOD'S PURPOSES MAY BE WRONG. Sarai and Abram are both wrong in the way they attempt to fulfil what God has promised.
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