Summary: God takes his promises seriously and expects us to do the same.
GOD’S PROMISES ARE NO LAUGHING MATTER
Text: Gen. 18:1-15; Gen. 21:1-7
1. Read Gen. 18:1-15
2. God has a sense of humor.
He made me
My dog thinks she’s a cat
3. Except for when it comes to his promises.
Thesis: God takes his promises seriously and expects us to do the same.
I. If We Want to Experience God’s Promises We Need to Invite God’s Presence (18:1-8)
A. My Lord
1. The Lord appeared to Abraham in the heat of the day. Suddenly three men appeared.
2. One of these men was the Lord himself.
The word Lord in verse 3 is the Hebrew word adonay (Ross, 341).
This word is only used in the OT for God
The three visitors came from another world to bring Abraham a message.
3. However, the important aspect in this passage, an aspect we cannot overlook, is how Abraham responded.
He begged the Lord to stay (v. 3)
He hastened to serve him (v. 6)
He prepared a feast fit for a King (vv.6-8)
4. He knew that this was a visitation from God himself, and he treated it as precious and special.
B. God’s Presence
1. Illustration: At the dedication service, we treated it as special, and we prepared a feast.
2. We have the opportunity to have a visitation from God everyday.
Are we begging Him to stay?
Are we hastening to serve Him?
Are we treating it as precious?
3. Ps. 16:11 You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.
4. If we want the blessings of God in our lives, then we have to invite the presence of God.
Transition: The blessings of God, begin in the presence of God.
II. If Want God’s Promises We Have to Take Them Seriously (18:9-15)
A. Why Did Sarah Laugh?
1. Then the Lord asked Abraham where Sarah was at?
2. The Lord told him that he would return in a year and Sarah will have a son.
It’s emphatic - "I WILL CERTIANLY RETURN..."
The Lord leaves no doubt, this will happen.
3. They were old.
Abraham was 99
Sarah was about 90
4. When Sarah heard this she laughed.
The pleasure she talking about is conceiving a child.
Illustration: Imagine grandma having a baby.
5. The Lord heard Sarah.
• Why did she laugh?
• "Too hard" also means "too extraordinary, too marvelous" (Horton, CBL, 147).
B. Doubt Doesn’t Take Them Seriously
1. Sarah showed her doubt when she laughed.
God this is a joke!
God you’re not able!
2. Anytime that we doubt the promises of God, it shows that we are not taking them seriously.
God your promises are a joke!
God you’re not able!
Do we believe them or not?
3. Job 42:2 "I know that You can do everything, And that no purpose of Yours can be withheld from You.
Transition: If want to experience the promise of God, we need to take them seriously.
III. If We Want God’s Promises We Must Receive Them with Joy (21:1-7)
A. God Has Brought Me Laughter
1. Read 21:1-7
2. Illustration: Happy is the person who can laugh at himself. He will never cease to be amused.
3. And the LORD visited Sarah as He had said, and the LORD did for Sarah as He had spoken.
He miraculously intervened and altered her destiny
He also miraculously intervened and changed our destiny
4. They named their son Isaac.
It was not a laughter of unbelief and doubt
It was a laughter of joy
His name would be a reminder of God’s faithfulness and not their unbelief (Ross, 378).
B. Laugh With Me
1. Ours too can be a laughter of joy.
2. We have a choice.
Laughter of scorn and unbelief
Laughter of joy and blessing
1. Ps. 126:2 Then our mouth was filled with laughter, And our tongue with singing. Then they said among the nations, "The LORD has done great things for them."
1. What will you do with the promises of God?
Laugh in unbelief?
Laugh in joy?
2. Will you invite his presence to receive those promises?
3. God is awaiting your reply.