Genesis 21:1-7 – God’s set time

Gen 21:1  And the LORD visited Sarah as he had said, and the LORD did unto Sarah as he had spoken.

Gen 21:2  For Sarah conceived, and bare Abraham a son in his old age, at the set time of which God had spoken to him.

Gen 21:3  And Abraham called the name of his son that was born unto him, whom Sarah bare to him, Isaac.

Gen 21:4  And Abraham circumcised his son Isaac being eight days old, as God had commanded him.

Gen 21:5  And Abraham was an hundred years old, when his son Isaac was born unto him.

Gen 21:6  And Sarah said, God hath made me to laugh, so that all that hear will laugh with me.

Gen 21:7  And she said, Who would have said unto Abraham, that Sarah should have given children suck? for I have born him a son in his old age.

It has been 25 years since God first gave Abraham His list of promises in Chapter 12. One such promise was that all of the nations of the earth would be blessed through Abraham’s heir.  It is finally here, in this chapter that we see that Gods promises are literal and not figurative and God does not take any half-measures when it comes to His promises.

He told them that they would have a son and it didn’t matter how old they were and now this promise has come to pass.  They have a son whom they name Isaac (He laughs).

Abraham and Sarah had tried to help God’s plans along with the birth of Ishmael, just as we do many times when it comes to God’s timing.  All throughout Abraham’s life, we have a wonderful example of how God’s timing and ours are never the same.

Many times we get the promise; we are fired up, prayed up, and ready to make an impact for the Lord.  We shoot out of the gate like a rocket, ready to take on the world, because the Lord’s word is still fresh in our hearts.

But then 5, 10, maybe 25 years go by and we haven’t seen the outcome that we had hoped.  We haven’t made that much of an impact, or so we think, and we lose that fire that we once had.  We lose our zeal and we sometimes lose hope.  Then we give up, or we stop working as hard because our numbers aren’t as big as before; attendance isn’t as great as it was; people don’t seem as interested as they once were.

All the while God’s promise is still there, but waiting for that set time.

We can try to help God’ plan along but it will only lead to more frustration and it won’t ever change that set time.  But it might change us for the worse and not better.

We are limited, finite being who are ever so inclined to measure time, mainly because it has an effect on us.

I have wondered, even while reading the episodes in Abraham’s life just how he handled those quiet years in between God’s word; His promises and their set time to come to pass.

Did he ever get in a rut?

Forgetting that God had a set time?

Or did he keep his eyes open like Moses?

Exo 3:1  Now Moses kept the flock of Jethro his father in law, the priest of Midian: and he led the flock to the backside of the desert, and came to the mountain of God, even to Horeb.

Exo 3:2  And the angel of the LORD appeared unto him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush: and he looked, and, behold, the bush burned with fire, and the bush was not consumed.

Exo 3:3  And Moses said, I will now turn aside, and see this great sight, why the bush is not burnt.

Exo 3:4  And when the LORD saw that he turned aside to see, God called unto him out of the midst of the bush, and said, Moses, Moses. And he said, Here am I.

Moses knew what the Lord had promised that He would do through him.

He would deliver the people of Israel and when Moses thought the time was right; he acted.

Exo 2:11  And it came to pass in those days, when Moses was grown, that he went out unto his brethren, and looked on their burdens: and he spied an Egyptian smiting an Hebrew, one of his brethren.

Exo 2:12  And he looked this way and that way, and when he saw that there was no man, he slew the Egyptian, and hid him in the sand.

Exo 2:13  And when he went out the second day, behold, two men of the Hebrews strove together: and he said to him that did the wrong, Wherefore smitest thou thy fellow?

Exo 2:14  And he said, Who made thee a prince and a judge over us? intendest thou to kill me, as thou killedst the Egyptian? And Moses feared, and said, Surely this thing is known.

Exo 2:15  Now when Pharaoh heard this thing, he sought to slay Moses. But Moses fled from the face of Pharaoh, and dwelt in the land of Midian: and he sat down by a well.

The problem here was that this was not God’s set time.

Moses needed to spend some time in the wilderness so that he could lead the people to deliverance.

He has gone from a man of stature to a man with no stature.  He watches over the flocks of his father-in-law.

Exo 3:3  And Moses said, I will now turn aside, and see this great sight, why the bush is not burnt.

Exo 3:4  And when the LORD saw that he turned aside to see, God called unto him out of the midst of the bush, and said, Moses, Moses. And he said, Here am I.

He had spent a long time out there and seen countless burning bushes.  Evidently this is something that was all too common in those days.

Yet Moses kept his eyes open and he turned to see what was going on.  God did not call out to him until He saw that Moses turned aside.

What would have happened if he had gone on his way?

It might have happened again but later on; perhaps the next day or 40 more years.  All the while Moses might have grown more accustomed to his life and it might have been harder to get his attention.

My hope and prayer for us all is that we have the ability and faith to wait for those set times of God and that we always keep our eyes opened so that His time and His will might become ours.

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About Clint Rodgers

I am a father of 2 wonderful children and the husband of a beautiful woman who has taught me more about compassion for goofballs than I could have ever learned. I have know Jesus for many years but about 5 years ago I truly met Him and now I do my best to follow Him as I walk in this world
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