Summary: The Laughter – Genesis chapter 21 verses 1-8 – sermon by Gordon Curley PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request – email:


(1). Two General Truths to Remember About God's Promises:

• (1a). God is in no hurry:

• (1b). God never forgets or retracts his word.

(2). Three Guide-lines Concerning God's Promises:

• (2a). Is the promise universal in scope?

• (2b). Is the promise personal in nature?

• (2c). Is the promise conditional?

(3). Abraham & Sarah: Faith & Promise (vs 1-8):

• (3a). God Fulfils His Promise (vs 1-3).

• (3b). God’s Timing is Perfect (vs 2).

• (3c). God’s Power is Unlimited (vs 5-7):

• (3d). God Has a Plan and a Purpose (vs 1-8).



• Where there's a will (There's an Insight into the Deceased)

• Here are a few actual examples from peoples Last Wills & Testament.

• William Shakespeare Died: 1616:

• He decreed that his wife Anne Hathaway receive his “second best bed”.

• (Not sure who got the best one!)

• Herr Tausch, of Langen, in the province of Hesse,

• Wrote the shortest will ever conceived: "Vse zene."

• The Czech words meant "All to wife."

• In 2004 the famously Leona Helmsley, the original Queen of Mean;

• Left instructions for much of her $4.5bn fortune to be spent caring for dogs,

• Which included $12 million. Yes, $12 million. to her dog Trouble.

• Robert Louis Stevenson, in 1891 that Annie Ide,

• The 12 year old daughter of Henry Clay Ide, the US Commissioner to Samoa,

• Where RLS he was living at the time,

• Was unhappy that her birthday fell on Christmas Day,

• So he bequeathed his birthday (13th November) to her.

• She was the allowed to assume that date as her own birthday,

• On the occasion that he no longer had use for it.

• The comedian Jack Benny was a proper romantic (take note Shakespeare),

• He bequeathed and left provision to Mary Livingstone his wife of 47 years,

• He left provision for a local florist to deliver one long stemmed rose to Mary,

• Every day until she died.

• Being that she lasted another decade that’s a whole lot of roses.

• TRANSITION: A last will and testament is the legal document,

• By which you promise to benefit others on your death.

• I would say they are legally binding promises.

• Now the God of the Bible makes promises and he keeps his promises!

• What he says he will do, he will do!

There are four words that every Christian should never forget:

• 'God keeps his word'.

• He will not tell us one thing and do another!

• He will never use the expression that we often use;

• "Oh well, promises are meant to be broken".

• God traffics in truth!

• God keeps his word, always!!!

(1). Two truths to remember about God's promises:

(1A). God is in no hurry:

• Remember that God doesn't operate on our time tables:

• He isn't ruled by wristwatches or by a filofax diary, his promises are timeless.


• Twice a year we change time.... well our watches anyway.

• We put them forward or backward by one hour.

• A reminder that the whole of our lives revolve around time.

• But God doesn't operate in the realm of the clock:

• He is not restricted to a calendar or a diary - God is in no hurry!

• In fact the Bible teaches that the promises of God:

• Are fulfilled more by our obedience,

• Than by our calendars.

(1B). God never forgets or retracts his word.

• Someone did the math and figured there are 7,474 promises in the Bible.

• If you don't believe me, have a read and check them out!


• There is an old gospel chores that says:

• "Every promise in the book is mine"

• It may be a nice chorus, but it is very bad theology!

If God makes a promise it will be done:

• But note a caution:

• Not all of the Bible's promises are applicable to all people.

• This is an inspired book, not a magical book.

• So you need to handle it correctly.

(2). Three guide-lines concerning God's promises:

(2a). Is the promise universal in scope?

• A promise is universal when words like;

• 'Whoever' or 'Anyone' are used in the scripture passage.


• Romans chapter 10 verse 13:

• "WHOEVER will call on the name of the Lord will be saved".

• Such promises are held out to anyone, anytime, anywhere;

• Who is willing to follow this advice.

(2b). Is the promise personal in nature?

• Many Bible promises are given to someone else,

• They are not necessarily meant for you.


• Remember the incident in Joshua chapter 6.

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