Summary: Hagar & Ishmael. (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request - email:

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A man opened a new business and his best friend sent him a floral arrangement:

• When the friend popped in to see him a few days later;

• He was shocked to see that the shop had sent a card saying; “Rest in peace”.

• When he called the florist to complain.

• The florist said; “It could be worse.

• Somewhere in the city is an arrangement in a cemetery that reads;

• “Congratulations on your new location”.

• Mistakes of course, are part of life;

• Even the so-called greats have made them!


• In Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, Act II, Scene II,

• Caesar asks Brutus, "What is’t o’clock?" Brutus replies, "Caesar, ’its strucken eight."

• The great Bard had forgotten that mechanical clocks;

• Were not invented until 14 centuries after Caesar’s death.

• Mistakes of course, are part of life;

• And we will see in to days passage Abraham & Sarah are about to make one big one!

Genesis 16 records a painful detour that Abraham and Sarah made in their walk with God:

• A detour that not only brought conflict into their home, but also into the world.

• What today’s journalists call "the Arab-Israeli conflict" began right here in this chapter!

• But this account is much more than ancient history with modern consequences.

• It’s a good lesson for God’s people about walking by “faith and not by sight”

• This chapter it’s a good lesson for us to learn;

• Concerning waiting for God to fulfil His promises.

• If we are honest many of us want ‘God’s will done our way’.

• Or we want God’s will done when we want rather than when he wants!


• There had never been any argument about it;

• Fred was the wisest and shrewdest man in town.

One day a young lad in the community questioned him about it.

• “Fred, what is it that makes you so wise?” he asked;

• Fred replied: “Good judgement, I’d say it was my good judgement”

• The boy replied: “And where did you get your good judgement?”

• Fred said; “That I got from experience”.

• “Where did you get your experience?” asked the boy.

• Fred replied: “From my bad judgement!”

Genesis chapter 16 contains a classic case of bad judgement:

• We will see how dangerous it is to depend on our own wisdom.

• And how nescercery it is, to depend and wait on God, his timing & wisdom.

(1). Waiting (verse 1a):

“Now Sarai, Abram’s wife, had borne him no children.

But she had an Egyptian maidservant named Hagar;”

• In this chapter Abram was now eighty-five years old.

• For the last ten years Abram has been walking with the Lord;

• And during this time he had learned some valuable lessons about faith.

• But like many of us he too often wanted God’s will done his way!

If you know the story of Abram:

• Then you know God had promised Abram and his wife Sarai a child;

• But God had not told them when the child would be born.

• For Abram & Sarai it was going to be a long period of waiting,

• And most of us don’t like to wait.

One of the hard lessons we have to learn as Christians is:

• God is never in a hurry, he is never panicked; he is always just on time;

• He has a perfect timetable for all that He wants to do.

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