Summary: Does God only care about moms in the limelight, the Sarahs? Or does he also care about the disadvantaged moms, like the Hagars?

Two Moms Who Couldn’t Get Along

Genesis 21:1-21

1. Mother’s Day is a day we set aside to honor our moms.

2. Our world needs good moms, and many moms fit that bill.

3. Moms have their own vocabulary; a few terms from the Mom’s dictionary:

AIRPLANE: What Mom impersonates to get a 1-yr.-old to eat strained beets.

BECAUSE: Mom's reason for having kids do things which can't be explained logically.

DATE: Infrequent outings with Dad where Mom can enjoy worrying about the kids in a different setting.


FOOD: The response Mom usually gives in answer to the question "What's for dinner tonight?" See "SARCASM"

GENIUSES: Amazingly, all of Mom's kids.

HAMPER: A wicker container with a lid, usually surrounded By, but not containing, dirty clothing.

HINDSIGHT: What Mom experiences from changing too many diapers.

JUNK: Dad's stuff.

KISS: Mom medicine.


OPEN: The position of children's mouths when they eat in front of company.

OVERSTUFFED RECLINER: Mom's nickname for Dad.

4. Moms have a certain camaraderie among themselves, generally.

5. But sometimes it’s not a pretty picture when one mom disagrees with other mom.

6. And some moms have more advantages than others.

Main Idea: Does God only care about moms in the limelight, the Sarahs? Or does he also care about the disadvantaged moms, like the Hagars?

I. Hagar’s Experience Was Not A PLEASANT One (1-7).

A. A SLAVE from Egypt.

B. PURCHASED by Sarah, the exalted mother.

C. Mother to ABRAHAM’S only son — for a while (1-7).

D. Thrust into the LIMELIGHT for a time, only to crash later.

1. Middle Eastern marriage contracts...

2. Sarah now 76, Abraham 86.....Ishmael is begotten...

3. Hagar now feels important.....but Sarah treats her harshly...

4. Changing times: God promised an heir through Sarah...she’s 90, Abraham is 100 when Isaac is born...

Social status (Wikipedia) “Status can be determined in two ways. One can earn their social status by their own achievements, which is known as achieved status. Alternatively, one can be placed in the stratification system by their inherited position, which is called ascribed status.”

E. Many mothers live TURBULENT lives, but God’s grace is still available.

II. The Conflict Between Two Mothers, Hagar and Sarah, Was INTENSE (8-14).

A. Tame mothers can get NASTY when their kids are involved.

• Conflict is really at a high level when you stop calling people by their name. “This woman” and “The son of the bondwoman.”

• When we depersonalize a human being by no longer calling them by name, we find it easier to be cruel and harsh.

• Our conscience has to be appeased some way, so we think a person we mistreat must be deserving of mistreatment; we hate those we wrong.

B. Ishmael acts like a typical JUNIOR HIGH boy: little social sense.

C. Sarah is CRUEL to Hagar, and God tells Abraham to acquiesce.

D. Hagar’s bubble is completely BURST when she and her son are rejected!

E. Very often, conflict in caused by only ONE person.

F. We must try to be OBJECTIVE about our children, but it is natural to be otherwise.

Just knowing this can help us compensate, but need to be careful of over compensation.

III. The Grace of God SUSTAINED Hagar Over the Years (21:15-21, 25:9)

A. Their situation: DEATH seems eminent (14-16).

1. Isaac 2, weaned....big party....Ishmael, now 15, makes fun of him.....

2. Sarah---send Hagar and Ishmael away...

3. God instructs Abraham to do what Sarah wants! Surprise...

(1) Isaac is the center of his plans (opposite of Koran)

(2) God would bless Ishmael and make a great nation of him, too

4. Abraham sends Hagar & Ishmael into desert with some food & water

(1) Could you imagine the emotions, incl. Abraham’s?

(2) Law of the land: Hagar would now be free...

(3) Hagar is now a single parent.....

(4) Lost; water runs out....waits for Ishmael to die, weeping

B. God INTERVENES (17-19)

C. God BLESSED Ishmael (20-21)

D. Conflict and separation are part of LIFE, but sometimes improve (25:9).

Genesis 25:9 is an obscure verse that speaks volumes. “….Isaac and Ishmael his sons buried him [Abraham] in the cave of Machpelah…”

• Implies Abraham still had a relationship with Ishmael

• Implies contact between Ishmael and Isaac

• The moms may have never been reconciled, but some sort of “visitation”

IV. No Matter Our Social Standing, Jesus is YOKED to Us for the Long Stretches And Into Eternity.

Some people think, “I don’t know if I want to bring children into the world that way things are going…” or “I don’t have the status to be a good mom.”

God can give us courage, & He can help us “earn” status through developing wisdom.

Some people think, “I’ll let other people rear my kids — I might mess up.” Jesus is yoked to you if you are in Christ.

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