Summary: In the Narrative of the encounter of Hagar with god we learn of a new name for God and how it can apply to our lives.
What’s In A Name
Genesis 16: 1-16 (NLT)
Intro:The 1960’s were a wild time. In California the hippies were abundant and carefree. As these hippies got older and married and had children, they produced children with some unusual names. One of the more well known was the rocker Frank Zappa. He is known as the daddy of the weird naming celebrities. He named his first child Moon Unit and started a movement of crazy names. Jermaine Jackson of the Jackson Five named his child Jermajesty. There were names like Time Warp and Spring Fever and Precious Promise. Eventually most of these people wound up in Santa Cruz California and their kids attended the same school. The teachers were used to kids with very strange names. In walks Fruit Stand. On the first day of school for kindergarten the parents were instructed to put name tags on their children when they put them on the bus. That way when the children got to school, the teachers would know their names.
. School started and this is how the day went. "Would you like to play with the blocks, Fruit Stand?" they offered. And later, "Fruit Stand, how about a snack?" He accepted hesitantly. By the end of the day, his name didn’t seem much odder than Heather’s or Sun Ray’s. At dismissal time, the teachers led the children out to the buses. "Fruit Stand, do you know which one is your bus?" He didn’t answer. That wasn’t strange. He hadn’t answered them all day. Lots of children are shy on the first day of school. It didn’t matter. The teachers had instructed the parents to write the names of their children’s bus stops on the reverse side of their name tags. The teacher simply turned over the tag. There, neatly printed, was the word "Anthony."
. Names are important, aren’t they?
.Names mean something, they identify us.
. A teacher gave her class of second graders a lesson on the magnet and what it does. The next day in a written test, she included this question: “My full name has six letters. The first one is M, and I pick up things. What am I?” When the grades were all in the teacher was astounded to find that almost fifty percent had written in, mother.
. When we hear the name mother, we think of some qualities that are associated with it.
. The same is true for God. The Hebrew people had many names for God. Names like :
. Elohim – The creator God, mighty and strong
.Adonai – Meaning Lord
.El Shaddi – God Almighty
. Jehovah-Jireh- The Lord will provide
.EL - God
. In our scripture this morning we are introduced to another name for God.
. We are back in Genesis this Morning, Chapter 16.
. The Narrative is about Hagar, the handmaiden of Sarai, Abrams wife. She can also be traced back to being the mother of the Muslim faith
. I want to do something a little different this morning by doing a commentary on the verses as we go through them.
. You see there are many sermons within this scripture and I want to comment on each verse as we discover this new name for God.
. Let’s look at our scripture: Genesis 16:1-16
1Now Sarai, Abram’s wife, had not been able to bear children for him. But she had an Egyptian servant named Hagar.
2So Sarai said to Abram, “The LORD has prevented me from having children. Go and sleep with my servant. Perhaps I can have children through her.” And Abram agreed with Sarai’s proposal.
3So Sarai, Abram’s wife, took Hagar the Egyptian servant and gave her to Abram as a wife. (This happened ten years after Abram had settled in the land of Canaan.)
. If you remember, God had promised Abram and Sari a child. He had told Abram that his descendants would be as numerous as the stars in the sky. This was a promise that God had made to them.
. Unfortunately Sarai had waited on God long enough and decided to take things into her own hands.
. Many sermons on the dangers of not waiting on God have been preached using this scripture.
. So she hatches a plan. She has an Egyptian hand maiden named Hagar who she wants to use as a surrogate mother. Another wife for Abram but she would raise the child as her own.
.She shares this plan with Abram and instead of saying no, God has promised us a son, he went along with this.
. Now many of us draw back with revulsion at this concept but it was not a new concept to the Jewish people. It was customary that if a man’s wife could not bear children, a servant would be used and given to the husband as a slave-wife. She would bear children for the man and the children would be considered the children of his main wife.