Genesis Bible study: Chapter 15–17

Abraham finally speaks up

Chapter 15

God appears to Abram again and blesses him

Abram speaks up and reminds God that he doesn’t have any children who will inherit these blessings that God has promised.

Abram then tells God that his most trusted servant Eliazer will be his heir.

God then tells Abram not to worry. That he would have a son of his own. Abram believed God.

God then tells Abram that the land he is currently living in would be given to him and his descendants as their inheritance. Abram wonders how it would happen and then God tells Abram how.

God really gave Abram the full gist. His descendants really went through 400 years of slavery in Egypt.

Chapter 16

Sarai is impatient

Sarai takes matters into her own hands and gives her maid Hagar to Abram to produce an heir.

Abram a man that doesn’t want wahala from his wife, complies.

Hagar gets pregnant and then becomes very arrogant.

Sarai gets upset and blames Abram.

Sarai treated Hagar very poorly till she eventually ran away.

The Angel of the Lord appeared to Hagar and told her to go back home, that her cries had been heard by God.

The Angel then prophesies:

Hagar returned home, gave birth to a son and named him Ishmael.

Chapter 17

Abraham was 75 when he left Haran and 86 when Ishmael was born.

When Abram was 99 God appeared to him again.

With the same blessings and promises of many descendants.

He makes a covenant with Abram and his descendants, to be their God and to bless them.

The terms of the covenant are Abram must serve God faithfully and live a blameless life. Abram and his descendants must also circumcise all male children on the 8th day after their birth.

God changes Abram’s name to Abraham and Sarai’s name to Sarah.

Their names meaning Father and Mother of many nations respectively.

God promises a son that would come through 90 year old Sarah and at this point Abraham speaks up.

God affirms that Sarah would have a son and it’s through this son that the covenant would be established.

God however also promises to bless Ishmael and make his descendants great.

Abram then goes and circumcises all the males in his household.

What I learned from these chapters

Abraham was counted righteous, not because of what he did, but simply because He had faith in God. He was counted as righteous before the covenant was made and the circumcision was done.

I was inspired by Abraham’s faith so far. He seemed to just calmly accept God’s promise. It was nice to see him become really human and question an wonder when and how God’s word would happen.

Sarah took matters into her own hands and that didn’t work out for anyone. You can’t help God, God will do what He says He will do and when He wants to do it. It is important to trust God’s timing.

God made time, so He is not bound by it. We as finite humans are limited by time, but God is limitless. God isn’t bothered by the physical limitations you think you have, He works well even in our weaknesses.

I love how God gave Abraham the details of what was going to happen to his descendants before they eventually inhabit the land. God usually doesn’t give too much details, but He did here.

There was also something I noticed:

The people of the land were very sinful and they were meant to be punished for their sin. But note how long it was going to take before they’d be destroyed; 4 generations. God was willing to wait that long for them to repent. (Eventually they didn’t)

God gave them a chance regardless. He wasn’t quick to bring punishment but was patient.

“The Lord isn’t really being slow about His promise, as some people think. No, He is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent.”

‭‭2 Peter‬ ‭3:9‬ ‭NLT‬‬

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Sharon Stephen

A young Nigerian woman, sharing her thoughts on Faith, Medicine, Photography and Life in general. 💜