Genesis 20:1-21:21

  1. What may we learn from Gen.
    20 of the weakness of human nature, even in a believer, and of God’s protecting care and saving grace?
    Cf. Ps. 94:18; Mark 14:38; 1 Cor. 10:12; 2 Tim. 2:13.
  2. 21:1-7. ‘Isaac’ means ‘laughter’. What is the difference between Sarah’s laughter in 18:12 and in 21:6?
    How was the change brought about?
    See also 17:17-19. To what two complementary truths did the name Isaac thus bear witness?
    Cf. Matt. 19:26.
  3. 21:8-21. From what was Ishmael cast out, and why?
    Cf. Rom. 9:6-9; Gal. 4:28-30. Why did God nevertheless hear Ishmael’s voice, and grant him his blessing and his presence?

Note. 20:18. The use here of God’s covenant name ‘Lord’ or ‘Jehovah’ is significant. It was he who intervened to preserve Sarah as the intended mother of the promised son. Contrast 21:17-20, where we read that ‘God’, not ‘the Lord’, heard Ishmael’s voice, etc.