(Gen 21:1 NASB) Then the LORD took note of Sarah as He had said, and the LORD did for Sarah as He had promised.
Gen 21:1: Elohim visited Sarah and made her fertile. A full 25 years had passed since Elohim first promised prosperity to Abraham.
(Gen 21:2 NASB) So Sarah conceived and bore a son to Abraham in his old age, at the appointed time of which God had spoken to him.
(Gen 21:3 NASB) And Abraham called the name of his son who was born to him, whom Sarah bore to him, Isaac.
(Gen 21:4 NASB) Then Abraham circumcised his son Isaac when he was eight days old, as God had commanded him.
Gen 21:4: It was a year after Elohim last visited Abraham and Sarah and she bore a son just as promised. This is the first recorded instance of circumcision on the eighth day.
(Gen 21:5 NASB) Now Abraham was one hundred years old when his son Isaac was born to him.
(Gen 21:6 NASB) And Sarah said, “God has made laughter for me; everyone who hears will laugh with me.”
Gen 21:6: The name Isaac means “he laughs.” Sarah was making a joke. She is now speaking of the laughter of rejoicing.
(Gen 21:7 NASB) And she said, “Who would have said to Abraham that Sarah would nurse children? Yet I have borne him a son in his old age.”
Gen 21:7: Sarah’s body was rejuvenated not only to give birth, but to nurse her baby.
(Gen 21:8 NASB) And the child grew and was weaned, and Abraham made a great feast on the day that Isaac was weaned.
(Gen 21:9 NASB) Now Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian, whom she had borne to Abraham, mocking.
Gen 21:9: Hagar’s son was mocking Sarah and/or Isaac. The Hebrew word is similar to “Isaac” meaning he was derisively laughing at Isaac. (3327. Yitschaq, yits-khawk’; from H6711; laughter (i.e. mockery); Jitschak (or Isaac), son of Abraham:–Isaac. Comp. H3446.6711. tsachaq, tsaw-khak’; a prim. root; to laugh outright (in merriment or scorn); by impl. to sport:–laugh, mock, play, make sport.)
It is possible that Ishmael was making fun of Isaac and his name.
(Gen 21:10 NASB) Therefore she said to Abraham, “Drive out this maid and her son, for the son of this maid shall not be an heir with my son Isaac.”
(Gen 21:11 NASB) And the matter distressed Abraham greatly because of his son.
Gen 21:11: According to ancient laws of Hammurabi (not that Abraham was necessarily going to follow them, but they certainly would have had an influence on the culture), an illegitimate son was an heir if the father claimed him as a son. It would appear that Ishmael was entitled to a share of his father’s estate.
Another ancient law states that a slave woman would be granted her freedom if she bore him a son. But they would forfeit their share of his personal property. Sarah was telling Abraham to exercise that right.
Abraham did not want to do it because he loved Ishmael.
(Gen 21:12 NASB) But God said to Abraham, “Do not be distressed because of the lad and your maid; whatever Sarah tells you, listen to her, for through Isaac your descendants shall be named.
(Gen 21:13 NASB) “And of the son of the maid I will make a nation also, because he is your descendant.”
Gen 21:13: Elohim tells Abraham to do what his wife says. He is promising to make a great nation of Ishmael also.
(Gen 21:14 NASB) So Abraham rose early in the morning, and took bread and a skin of water, and gave them to Hagar, putting them on her shoulder, and gave her the boy, and sent her away. And she departed, and wandered about in the wilderness of Beersheba.
Gen 21:14: The Hebrew word for “boy” can mean a young man to adulthood.
(Gen 21:15 NASB) And the water in the skin was used up, and she left the boy under one of the bushes.
(Gen 21:16 NASB) Then she went and sat down opposite him, about a bowshot away, for she said, “Do not let me see the boy die.” And she sat opposite him, and lifted up her voice and wept.
Gen 21:16: Hagar has reached a point of despair. According to the text, she has been somewhat of an innocent pawn in this entire episode.
She said to herself that she would rather die first than watch her son die.
(Gen 21:17 NASB) And God heard the lad crying; and the angel of God called to Hagar from heaven, and said to her, “What is the matter with you, Hagar? Do not fear, for God has heard the voice of the lad where he is.
(Gen 21:18 NASB) “Arise, lift up the lad, and hold him by the hand; for I will make a great nation of him.”
(Gen 21:19 NASB) Then God opened her eyes and she saw a well of water; and she went and filled the skin with water, and gave the lad a drink.
Gen 21:19: Abraham sent Hagar and Ishmael into the wilderness with minimal provisions. He trusted in Elohim to provide for them and He did.
(Gen 21:20 NASB) And God was with the lad, and he grew; and he lived in the wilderness, and became an archer.
(Gen 21:21 NASB) And he lived in the wilderness of Paran; and his mother took a wife for him from the land of Egypt.
Gen 21:21: Ishmael became a skilled archer and probably used that skill to feed himself and his mother. Hagar found a wife for him in Egypt since she too was an Egyptian.
Hagar is told that her son will be a great nation. This has held true. To this day, the Arabs claim to be sons of Ishmael and they are indeed a strong nation.
Ishmael is the only man in Scripture described as an archer. Since it is apparent that the Beast in Daniel and Revelation are the Muslim people, this fits well with Revelation 6:1-2. In this passage, the man rides in on a white horse with a bow in his hand. These are strong symbolic signs that this man is Mohammed, who calls himself the son of Ishmael..
In the year 621, at the age of 51 years old, He flew on the magical Winged-Horse of Fire which he called Burak, which literally means White Horse but seen as “Thunder-Lightning”. The full version of this most memorable moment has been preserved in “The Bokhari” (Vol.15, p.3615) one of the Holy Islamic Scriptures.”
(Gen 21:22 NASB) Now it came about at that time, that Abimelech and Phicol, the commander of his army, spoke to Abraham, saying, “God is with you in all that you do;
(Gen 21:23 NASB) now therefore, swear to me here by God that you will not deal falsely with me, or with my offspring, or with my posterity; but according to the kindness that I have shown to you, you shall show to me, and to the land in which you have sojourned.”
(Gen 21:24 NASB) And Abraham said, “I swear it.”
Gen 21:24: Abraham is now dealing with kings on an equal basis and he acts accordingly. Abimelech is essentially asking for a pact of mutual non-aggression.
(Gen 21:25 NASB) But Abraham complained to Abimelech because of the well of water which the servants of Abimelech had seized.
(Gen 21:26 NASB) And Abimelech said, “I do not know who has done this thing; neither did you tell me, nor did I hear of it until today.”
Gen 21:26: Some of Abimelech’s servants had seized a well of Abrahams. The king was acknowledging the property rights of Abraham.
(Gen 21:27 NASB) And Abraham took sheep and oxen, and gave them to Abimelech; and the two of them made a covenant.
(Gen 21:28 NASB) Then Abraham set seven ewe lambs of the flock by themselves.
(Gen 21:29 NASB) And Abimelech said to Abraham, “What do these seven ewe lambs mean, which you have set by themselves?”
(Gen 21:30 NASB) And he said, “You shall take these seven ewe lambs from my hand in order that it may be a witness to me, that I dug this well.”
Gen 21:30: Abraham gave Abimelech seven ewe lambs in order to make a covenant. They would be a testimony that this is Abraham’s well.
(Gen 21:31 NASB) Therefore he called that place Beersheba; because there the two of them took an oath.
(Gen 21:32 NASB) So they made a covenant at Beersheba; and Abimelech and Phicol, the commander of his army, arose and returned to the land of the Philistines.
(Gen 21:33 NASB) And Abraham planted a tamarisk tree at Beersheba, and there he called on the name of the LORD, the Everlasting God.
(Gen 21:34 NASB) And Abraham sojourned in the land of the Philistines for many days.
Gen 21:34: The term “Beersheba” means “well of oath” or “well of seven.” The words “to swear” and Beersheba contain the Hebrew stem word for “seven.”
Interestingly enough the names of the two main characters in this account, Abraham and Abimelech, each occur seven times in the text.
Patrick McGuireCopyright 2014 Patrick McGuire and Beit Yeshua Torah Assembly All rights reserved, no portion of this Lesson may be reproduced in any manner whatsoever without written permission except in the case of brief quotations in articles and reviews. Beit Yeshua Torah Assembly Fort Smith, Arkansas