Summary: Ishmael and Isaac. Offspring of the same biological father, but recipients of a different promise.

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Same Daddy…

Different Promise

Galatians 4:21-31

Galatians 4:21-23 (NLT)

Listen to me, you who want to live under the law. Do you know what the law really says? [22] The Scriptures say that Abraham had two sons, one from his slave-wife and one from his freeborn wife. [23] The son of the slave-wife was born in a human attempt to bring about the fulfillment of God’s promise. But the son of the freeborn wife was born as God’s own fulfillment of his promise.

A Man with Two Sons

• Abraham’s Sons

– Ishmael

• Born to a slave woman (Hagar)

• A human attempt to fulfill God’s promise

Genesis 16:1-3

Genesis 16:1-3 (NLT)

But Sarai, Abram’s wife, had no children. So Sarai took her servant, an Egyptian woman named Hagar, [2] and gave her to Abram so she could bear his children. "The Lord has kept me from having any children," Sarai said to Abram. "Go and sleep with my servant. Perhaps I can have children through her." And Abram agreed. [3] So Sarai, Abram’s wife, took Hagar the Egyptian servant and gave her to Abram as a wife. (This happened ten years after Abram first arrived in the land of Canaan.)

A Man with Two Sons

• Abraham’s Sons

– Ishmael

• Born to a slave woman (Hagar)

• A human attempt to fulfill God’s promise

Genesis 16:1-3

– Isaac

• Born to a free woman (Sarah)

• God’s fulfillment of God’s promise

- Genesis 21:1-2

Genesis 21:1-2 (NLT)

Then the Lord did exactly what he had promised. [2] Sarah became pregnant, and she gave a son to Abraham in his old age. It all happened at the time God had said it would.

Galatians 4:24-25 (NLT)

Now these two women serve as an illustration of God’s two covenants. Hagar, the slave-wife, represents Mount Sinai where people first became enslaved to the law. [25] And now Jerusalem is just like Mount Sinai in Arabia, because she and her children live in slavery.

Living in Slavery

• Mount Sinai

– Where the law was given (Exodus 19-20)

• Where the people were bound

• Jerusalem

– The people had willingly enslaved themselves

• Legalistic teaching of the Judaizers

• How do we enslave ourselves today?

Galatians 4:26-28 (NLT)

But Sarah, the free woman, represents the heavenly Jerusalem. And she is our mother. [27] That is what Isaiah meant when he prophesied,

"Rejoice, O childless woman!

Break forth into loud and joyful song,

even though you never gave birth to a child.

For the woman who could bear no children

now has more than all the other women!"

[28] And you, dear brothers and sisters, are children of the promise, just like Isaac.

Born into Freedom

• Sarah

- Was free when she gave birth

– Recipient of the promise

• Jerusalem above

– Representative of the Kingdom of God

• It’s inhabitants are children of the promise of


- Free from the law

– Justified by faith

Galatians 4:29 (NLT)

And we who are born of the Holy Spirit are persecuted by those who want us to keep the law, just as Isaac, the child of promise, was persecuted by Ishmael, the son of the slave-wife.

Ongoing Strife

• Ishmael

– Taunted Isaac (Genesis 21:9)

• Belittling Isaac’s rightful standing

• The Judaizers

– Taunted the Gentile Christians

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