ASV notes on Genesis 21:22-34

The king Abimelech and his general Phicol knew Abraham and his private army that eradicated the four kings from the east, Abraham was in their mind a threat to their kingdom. But the interest of Abraham was water for his animals.

The king and his general came and wanted Abraham to swear to keep his word and treat Abimelech and his descendants fairly. They stood by a well that Abraham had dug. There they both swore, Abraham not to be hostile to the king’s people and Abimelech swore that the well was dug by Abraham and they called the well Beersheba, the well of the oath. This was in the same area where an angel spoke to Hagar.

Abraham was powerful in the eyes of Abimelech, but the main reason, I think, that the king feared Abraham was that he saw God blessing him in everything, Abimelech feared Abraham’s God. Abraham planted a tamarisk in the area as a witness of his awesome God, and there he called on His name; YAHAWAH.

ASV notes on Genesis 21:14-21

Abraham sent Hagar and Ishmael away into the wilderness of Beersheba with a skin bag of water, Ishmael was about 20 years of age, he was grown up and he and his mother could have been for days in the wilderness before the bag was empty.

They were exhausted and they both wept. Hagar wept, but God heard the voice of Ishmael. Hagar was not of Abraham, and should never have been his wife, but Ishmael was a descendant of Abraham, he was of Abraham and because of Abraham God cared for Ishmael.

An angel called Hagar from heaven and told her not to be afraid and to take Ishmael by his hand and help him up, Hagar did exactly what the angel told her, and then she saw a well with fresh running water, God saved them because of the boy, not her. God blessed them and Ishmael became an archer and Hagar coming from Egypt went there and fetched a wife for his son.

ASV notes on Genesis 21:1-13

God in his grace came to Sarah, what He did we don’t know, but God kept his promise and the laughter Isaac was born. When Isaac was about 3 years old Sarah and Abraham could stop nursing him as a helpless child and start the teaching and demanding period. Today children are being nursed far too long; the children enter school not prepared for it.   

Isaac was now at least 3 years old, probably 5 or 6, that made Ishmael about 19, 20 years old. Ishmael was grown up; he was old enough to know not to mock the 5/6 year old Isaac. The normal scenario would have been that Ishmael bothered Isaac, and Sarah talked to him and Ismael stopped doing it, but when he thought nobody saw him, he did it again.

Then Sarah talked to her maid Hagar, and she also talked to Ishmael, but in a respectful way, Ishmael was about 20 and Hagar knew that God had promised to make him a people. Ishmael also knew he was to become the father of a nation and I think that his high thoughts of himself made him treat Isaac as an inferior.

When the mocking didn’t stop Sarah went to Abraham asking him to send Hagar and her son away from them. This bothered Abraham and he didn’t know what to do, he loved his son Ishmael also. This was just a family matter, quite normal for a family to have some trouble like that, especially if you have two wives.

But God found it important enough to intervene; He spoke to Abraham and told him to listen to Sarah and do as she said. God was to look after both Isaac and Ishmael not because of them, but because of Abraham, God blessed the descendants of His prophet. Abraham was in the center, all around was a blessing for him. It is the same with you today, if you follow Jesus all people around you are blessed too, and they are a blessing to you, it is not because of them, but it is God’s relation to you through Jesus.

ASV notes on Genesis 16:6-11

Sarah was the wife of Abraham and still the mistress in her house and Abraham allowed Sarah to threat Hagar as she wanted. Sarah was rough towards her  maid and Hagar fled into the dessert. It was not the will of God that Hagar should have a child with Abraham, but God is a fair God and sent an angel to comfort her in her escape into the dessert.

Abraham accepted that Sarah was hard with Hagar, but God didn’t like it and the angel comforted her, telling her about the future, about her son Ishmael and said; “Because the Lord has heard and paid attention to your persecution” and Hagar went back to her mistress in assurance that God was looking after her too.

God is watching you also, He knows what you’re going through and He would love to help you, but he needs to connect to your heart. God is spirit and you are flesh, there is no direct line between spirit and flesh. You need to install a spiritual internet into your heart to receive from God. And that “internet” is Jesus; it works 24/7 and is free.

ASV notes on Genesis 16:14-16

God by a well, saved Hagar’s life and she named the well, Beer-lahai-roi, the living one who sees me, it is between Kadesh and Bered and testifies about God being fair and good.

Hagar gave birth to a son and named him Ishmael as the angel told her. Ishmael means God hears. Every time people used the name of the well, they talked about God, and when they said Ishmael they talked about God, God sees and God hears. God is the same today as then.