Abraham's Sons

Main Points to Remember
  1. God's plans will be fulfilled God's way, not ours.
  2. Going outside God's ways brings strife and pain
Vocabulary:    handmaiden: a female servant

Father, please keep us from pursuing our plans and instead guide us through your plans

Make a timeline to show that God's time is larger than our time. Put Abraham and one end and Christ at the other. Talk about the promises God made to Abraham and mark their approximate completion on the timeline. Isaac was born when Abraham was 100 years old. A great people could start about the time of the captivity - 400 years after Abraham. The land would be about 50 years after that. The Messiah would come 2000 years after Abraham! Discuss how much sooner the son of promise came than the other promises. Which promises did Abraham live to see? Should we always expect to see all of God's promises fulfilled in our lifetime? No. There are some things we do that we may never see the full result of. But we must trust that the promise will be fulfilled and our efforts will be worth it all.

Do the ends justify the means? Sarah felt that if she couldn't give Abraham a son, Hagar could. She failed to rely on God to give them both a son. God often asks us to participate is his plans, but that doesn't mean we can change his plans. We can't use any old means to achieve God's ends. The crusaders felt they could torture people into "converting" to Christianity. Many people today feel they can worship, or obey, in whatever fashion they desire, as long as their "goal" is to worship or obey. God wants "obedience more than sacrifice". He wants us to submit, and trust that his ways will accomplish his plans.

: Add Ishmael and Isaac to a family tree that will develop as the lessons progress. Have the students make generic paper people (like Bible Friends). Name them and post them on a board, using yarn or dots to connect the family lines.

  1. God intended from Abraham's son to be from Hagar.  F
  2. Abraham and his wife were beyond child-bearing age. T
  3. Sarah loved Ishmael and Hagar. F
  4. Hagar was rescued by the Angel of the Lord. T
  5. Ishmael was the son that God promised Abraham. F
Memory Work
  • "No longer shall your name be called Abram, but your name shall be Abraham, for I have made you a father of many nations." Genesis 17:5
Review Questions (can be used with gameboard)
 linguistic questions
  1. Where in the Bible is this lesson found? Genesis
  2. Fill in the blank: "I have made you a father of many __________."   nations
  3. Name the wife and sons of Abraham.
  activity questions
  1. Draw a quick family tree of Abraham's family.
  2. Act out Sarah being harsh to Hagar.
  3. Describe what is happening in the picture of the Ishmael Bible Trading Card.
  emotion questions
  1. Why did Sarah give Hagar to Abraham? She wanted a son by any means.
  2. Why was Sarah harsh with Hagar? 1) because Hagar disdained Sarah, 2) she worried that Ishmael would take Isaac's place
  3. How do you think Hagar felt when she was sent away? hopeless, used
  4. How do you think she felt when the Angel of the Lord saved her? rescued, reborn
application questions
  1. Will altering God's plan bring joy or pain? pain
  2. Can God accomplish his plans his way? always
  3. It's easy to take our failures out on others? How can we avoid being like Sarah? 1) don't try to alter God's plans, 2) confess our error and take responsibility for our mistakes
fact questions
  1. Who was Hagar? Sarah's servant
  2. Who was Ishmael? Hagar's son with Abraham
  3. Who was the son of promise? Isaac
  4. How old was Abraham when Isaac was born? 100
review questions
  1. Why was Isaac obviously a special child? only God could make a child from two people as old as Sarah and Abraham
  2. Why was Ishmael promised a nation? because he was also a child of Abraham
  3. Was Ishmael's life easy? no, God said "his hand shall be against every man, and every man's hand against him"