Abraham and Sarah
Abraham and Sarah are the extraordinary figures and their life as described in the Old Testament exerts positive influence on the behavior of human beings. Their story has taught to adopt patience in life, and have faith in God because God knows best for His creatures. The story and life of Abraham and Sarah teach love, respect, loyalty, and faithfulness to the entire humanity. The story also indicates that the God always help his creatures and fulfill all the promises as He did with Abraham regarding his nation and son.
Abraham was living in Ur, which is the capital of Sumer (Marshall, and Sinclair). The people living in the Ur city worshipped idols and also prayed to them. They did not have faith in God. Additionally, they had also killed several righteous individuals that were living in Ur and have faith in God. However, they also tried to take the life of Abraham but they remained unsuccessful. Abraham prayed to God, and God said that he would take care of him as well as his family. God made a covenant by promising Abraham that he would make his descendants into a huge and a great nation. God fulfilled his promise, which is explained in detail below.
The courage and obedience of of Abraham and Sarah can be analyzed from the fact that God ordered Abraham to leave this city in 2000 B.C., and shift to a new place indicated by God (Garlow). Sarah was the wife of Abraham, and she could not become a mother as she was unable to conceive a child. Both Abraham and Sarah obeyed God, and they left Ur. God, however, sent famine, Sarah and Abraham traveled in order to find the food. However, they got to know that they could find the food in Egypt, so they moved to Egypt. Further, the King of Egypt appreciated Abraham and Sarah as he liked their behavior and humble attitude. The king gave them many animals as a gift and also gave other gifts. Then they left Egypt.
However, after their short stay in the land of Egypt, they became wealthy and moved back to Canaan. In Canaan, Abraham along with 318 men defeated Loot’s armies that belong to the East but trying to occupy Sodom as majority of them were living there (Smith). Further, Sodom’s King considered the great and noble deed of Abraham, and the priest named Melchizedek gifted wine and bread to Abraham. Afterwards, Abraham and Sarah returned home, where God spoke to Abraham again about the covenant. God promised to Abraham that his descendants would be as abundant as the stars present in the sky (McKeehan, and McKeehan). Furthermore, a ceremony was performed, and God passed a radiating pot via the scarified animals, which indicated that the promise made by God would not be broken. However, it can be noted that God considered the faith of Abraham in the shape of the righteousness.
Sarah wanted to give an heir to her husband. Since, she could not become pregnant so, she convinced her handmaiden named Hagar to sleep with her husband so that she could give birth to an heir of Abraham (Allen). Sarah became upset due to the Hagar’s disdain, and Hagar was also fearful, but God spoke to Hager in order to comfort her, and God promised to bless her with a son. After that Hagar returned for giving birth to first son of Abraham, named Ishmael. God, however, spoke to Abraham again and promised to Abraham that He would bless him with a son through his wife Sarah. The son would be named as Isaac, the covenant would, however, be fulfilled thorough Isaac. Abraham was previously called Abram and Sarah was called Sarai, but God had renamed them as Abraham and Sarah (Moore).
Moreover, one day, three men came to meet Abraham. It is believed that God appeared in the form of these men in order to tell good news to Abraham. The three men told that Sarah would be blessed with a son. But, Sarah laughed as she was about 90 years old at that time, and she could not have child. However, the three men, who gave the news of a son to Abraham, travelled towards the cities of the Gomorrah and Sodom that were situated in the East. They aim was to destroy these cities as they were involved in corruption and evilness. Abraham requested the Lord on behalf of the cities in order to convince him for not destroying the cities because good men also live in these cities. When these men entered Sodom, Loot welcomed them. However, at night the men living in the city surrounded the home of Loot, and they, and they wished to harm the three messengers. Further, the messengers convinced Loot to leave the city along with his family, and told them not to look back while leaving. God, however, rained down the flaming sulfur on the cities Gomorrah and Sodom. The wife of Loot looked back, she was starring at her home, and she tuned into the salt pillar.
Abraham gained political strength and status in Canaan. However, Sarah finally gave birth to Abraham’s son named Isaac. Sarah requested to send Ishmael and his mother Hager away, and Abraham sent them away so that Sarah’s request can be fulfilled, which indicates the love of Abraham for Sarah. Further, God again spoke to Abraham in order to check his faithfulness and love for God, God asked Abraham to sacrifice his son for God. Abraham show obedience, and became ready to sacrifice his son in the way of God. Abraham along with Isaac went to the mountains, and Isaac, however, lay down, Abraham was about to strike that God’s angle came and stopped him. God was impressed with the devotion and sincerity of Abraham, and once again the covenant was reaffirmed.
This story has shown the accomplishment of Sarah, she remained loyal to her husband Abraham and ultimately both of them got a lot of happiness and blessings. Sarah became the mother of entire Israel nation. This story is indicative of the fact that through Sarah and Abraham God has planned for the entire humanity on the long term basis. God has taught through the lives of Abraham and Sarah that individuals should adopt patience and wait for the good time, and should have faith and belief in God. This story has also indicated that God never leaves his people alone and continues to guide and protect them. Another fact that is revealed with the help of the story of Sarah and Abraham explained in the Old Testament is that God communicates with the individuals. The communication can be directly as well as indirectly, which is evident from the direct conversation of God with Abraham, and also from the conversation with Abraham though the three men. However, there are instances of the disappearance of God, who disappeared without explaining his ultimate intentions, such as when Abraham was moving towards the mountain for sacrificing his son on the will of God, God was not there, but he sent his angle to protect Isaac. The absence of God also had a purpose, God wanted to test the faith and loyalty of Abraham.
The characters and the life of Abraham and Sarah has taught several lesson that are useful for the spending a peaceful life. To wait for God’s action in the lives is the most difficult task for the individuals. The individuals, however, become dissatisfied if the solution provided by God is not up to their expectations. The life of Sarah, however, teaches that whenever individuals feel afraid and uncertain, they should remember that fact that there is nothing complex and difficult for God, and He will ultimately help and assist his people, and give them the best what they deserve. It can be analyzed from the fact that Sarah waited for a longer period of time, which is 90 years for the baby. Surely, she had relinquished her hope of becoming a mother. Sarah was considering the promise of God from her imperfect human viewpoint. But, the fact is that God has used Sarah’s life for revealing an amazing plan, and proved that He is not restricted to what usually takes place. Sometimes, the individuals feel that God has put their lives in a pattern that is permanently holding their lives and they want to get out of this pattern, so instead of taking such matters seriously and trying to take in hands, individuals should keep the story of Sarah in their mind and should wait for the proper time as God definitely has better plans for all the individuals, and he will surely help the individuals to come out of the difficult situation.
Further, from the story of Sarah and Abraham, difference between the efforts made by humans and having faith in God can be analyzed. Individuals should act according to the will of God, and should show with their effort that they are obedient to God. However, God expects that the individuals should be aware of His will, and should wait for him with faith and patience because God will surely fulfill His promise, and give the promised thing to the individuals. This also indicates that God is more caring as compared to the individuals, as He always fulfills his promise. The story of Sarah and Abraham has also taught that there is nothing impossible for God. God can do everything, as evident from the fact that God promised Abraham for a son, and eventually granted him. God had also promised Abraham that he would make a great nation for him, and also take care of him and his entire family. God has started His plan for a group of the tribes, i.e., Israel for making a great nation, when He formed an association with Abraham. God promised that He would be with those people that are with Abraham, and would give punish to those who made the survival of Abraham difficult, and God fulfilled all the promises.
God, however, always remain faithful with his promises. God had chosen Abraham so that people can learn from his life, God had changed his name from Abram to Abraham, because Abram means ‘exalted father’ and Abraham means ‘father of multitude’. However, God has made extraordinary commitments, and through these promises God has decided significant designs that have the ultimate objective of benefitting the families living on the earth. The prophecies, the lives, and the history of the Abraham and Sarah are significant not only for the Christians, but for all the people living in this world irrespective of their religion. God had also passed the covenants and the promises to the generations of Abraham, such as to his son Isaac, then grandson named Jacob, and then to the twelve sons of Jacob, from where the Israel’s tribes emerged. God had, however, also provided more details to the successive generations, and also explained the purpose of the promises, as He wanted to execute His magnificent design for all of them so that their condition can be improved. However, the commitments of the Kind for the mankind are the basic threads, which help in linking several potions of the Scriptures together that in turn provide the structure as well as meaning to the old testaments and ultimately to the Bible. The importance of these commitments can also be evaluated from the fact that Christ’s mission was to continue these promises.
In a nutshell, Abraham’s life is an illustration of the crucial doctrine. The faith of Abraham in God’s promises was enough for God in order to declare him as a righteous person, and Abraham had done nothing for earning the justifications. His trust and the faith on the Lord was enough. Abraham was, however, a man of the trust, faith, piety, conviction, and resilience, he was a generous man, and also loyal to his Lord. Sarah has showed absolute trust on the promises of God. She supported her husband in the good times as well as in the bad times. She taken the vows of marriage in a serious manner, loved her husband to an extent that she became willing to leave her comfort, and moved to an unknown place, following the directions of God, but she was not familiar with the promises at that time. Her love can also be analyzed from the fact that she took her maid into the bed of her husband as she did not want that her husband remain deprived of an heir. Sarah had fulfilled all her commitments, irrespective of the fact that she survived in a confused and dangerous world. She also faced the problems, and also made mistakes as they are made by every person, but still she stood determined and firm for fulfilling her commitments and faithfulness to her husband as well as to God.
All the individuals should live their lives in a way that their faith is similar to that of Abraham and their love is similar to that of Sarah, so that these characteristics continue from one generation to the other. This is due to the fact that without faith and love it is not possible to please God, the relationship of the individuals with God depends on the faith. Faith plays an important role in bringing the things bestowed by God from the realm of the spirit to the physical realm. Only faith can help individuals to overcome the difficulties that they face in their lives, and everything that God does for His individuals can only be attained with the help of the faith.
Allen, Robert L. All About Eve. Ohio: CSS, 2001. Print.
Garlow, James L. A Christian's Response to Islam. Illinois: Tyndale House, 1996. Print.
Marshall, Celia Brewer, and Celia B Sinclair. A Guide Through the Old Testament. Kentucky: Westminster John Knox, 1989. Print.
McKeehan, James, and Jim McKeehan. An Overview of the Old Testament and How It Relates to the New Testament. New York: IUniverse, 2002. Print.
Moore, George Truett. Exalted Father: Abraham's Journey of Faith. Philadelphia: Xlibris Corporation, 2007. Print.
Smith, Paul E. Famine in the Promised Land. New York: Morgan James, 2005. Print.
Robert L. Allen. All About Eve. Ohio: CSS, 2001. Print.
In the book, ‘All About Eve, Robert L. Allen’, has described the stories of women that are considered as Pious in Bible and have great significance in the entire literature of Bible. Sarah is one of those women. Allen has described those women who had firm faith on God, and set an example for the whole mankind. This source is useful as it explains the fact that Sarah could not become pregnant, but she waited for a long time, and ultimately became pregnant.
James L. Garlow. A Christian's Response to Islam. Illinois: Tyndale House, 1996. Print.
In the book ‘A Christian’s Repsonse to Islam’, James L. Garlow have described the response of the Christians to the Muslims in the post 9/11 era, by describing the historical prospects and the life of the pious people who have played an important role in the religious considerations such as Muhammad and Abraham. This source is useful because it described that the people of Ur wanted to kill Abraham because he believed in God, so God ordered Abraham to leave the place.
James, McKeehan. and Jim McKeehan. An Overview of the Old Testament and How It Relates to the New Testament. New York: iUniverse, 2002. Print.
In the book ‘An Overview of the Old Testament and How It Relates to the New Testament’, James, McKeehan. and Jim McKeehan have described the oaths and development of the scripture. He described the famous stories from the Old Testament such as Mary at Jesus’ Tomb, and story of Sarah and Abraham, and also explained that they can be understood in a much better way from the New Testament. This source is useful as it describe another promise of God that He made with Abraham regarding descendants.
George Truett Moore. Exalted Father: Abraham's Journey of Faith. Philadelphia: Xlibris Corporation, 2007. Print.
In the book, ‘Exalted Father: Abraham's Journey of Faith’, George Truett Moore, has described about the life of Abraham, how he was honored and cherished and later became the father of the three biggest religions, which are Islam, Christianity, and Judaism. Moore has described his struggle in the life, his travelling from Ur to the Promised Land, and his faith on God. The source is important as it tells about the previous names of Sarah and Abraham.
Paul E Smith. Famine in the Promised Land. New York: Morgan James, 2005. Print.
In the book, ‘Famine in the Promised Land’, Paul E Smith has described that God is loving, faithful, and powerful. The author in this book has explained that God has shown his faithfulness to the heroes of the faith, who are mentioned in the Bible. This source is important ias it explains about Abrahams stay in Canaan.