Have you ever noticed how God cleans up our messes? (God Is Faithful) We make mistakes every day, but God. There’s those two words again, But God! I have written an article titled But God already. It’s true though, as soon as you think something is impossible, God is there to perform a miracle But God! God is faithful!
In Genesis, the first Book of the Bible, there God is fixing our humanly mistakes. First, we see Abram tell Pharaoh that Sari is his sister. Let’s talk about the elephant in the room, technically Sari is Abram’s half-sister, but Abram and Sarai were being deceitful and didn’t want Pharaoh to know that Sarai was his wife, see Bible text below:
Genesis 12:10 “Now there was a famine in the land; and Abram went down into Egypt to live temporarily, for the famine in the land was oppressive and severe. 11 And when he was about to enter Egypt, he said to Sarai his wife, “Listen: I know that you are [c]a beautiful woman; 12 so when the Egyptians see you, they will say, ‘This is his wife’; and they will kill me [to acquire you], but they will let you live. 13 Please tell them that you are [d]my sister so that things will go well for me for your sake, and my life will be spared because of you.” 14 And when Abram entered Egypt, the Egyptians saw that Sarai was very beautiful. 15 Pharaoh’s princes (officials) also saw her and praised her to Pharaoh; and the woman was taken [for the purpose of marriage] into Pharaoh’s house (harem). 16 Therefore Pharaoh treated Abram well for her sake; he acquired sheep, oxen, male and female donkeys, male and female servants, and camels.
17 But the Lord punished Pharaoh and his household with severe plagues because of Sarai, Abram’s wife. 18 Then Pharaoh called Abram and said, “What is this that you have done to me? Why did you not tell me that she was your wife? 19 Why did you say, ‘She is my sister,’ so that I took her as my wife? Now then, here is your wife; take her and go!” 20 So Pharaoh commanded his men concerning him; and they escorted him on his way, with his wife and all that he had.” (Bible Gateway Amplified Bible 2022)
Abraham thought that Pharaoh would think Sari was so beautiful that they would harm him to get to Sari, but he should have had faith that God would protect him. God did make a covenant with him promising to make him a great Nation. But God was there to clean up the mess and make it right ensuring that Abram and Sari didn’t do anything to jeopardize God’s redemptive plan to bring the birth of Jesus Christ into fruition.
We see another mess: Sari tells Abram that he should sleep with her maid Hagar, because Sari thinks she isn’t able to give him a child and so Abram and Sari take matters into their own hands and Abram sleeps with Hagar, has a son named Ismael which means God hears. This was not the son that God had in mind when he promised Abram to make him a great nation, see Bible text below:
Genesis 16:1 “Now Sarai, Abram’s wife, had not borne him any children, and she had an Egyptian maid whose name was Hagar. 2 So Sarai said to Abram, “See here, the Lord has prevented me from bearing children. I am asking you to go in to [the bed of] my maid [so that she may bear you a child]; perhaps I will [a]obtain children by her.” And Abram listened to Sarai and did as she said. 3 After Abram had lived in the land of Canaan ten years, Abram’s wife Sarai took Hagar the Egyptian [maid] and gave her to her husband Abram to be his [secondary] wife. 4 He went in to [the bed of] Hagar, and she conceived; and when she realized that she had conceived, she looked with contempt on her mistress [regarding Sarai as insignificant because of her infertility]. 5 Then Sarai said to Abram, “May [the responsibility for] the wrong done to me [by the arrogant behavior of Hagar] be upon you. I gave my maid into your arms, and when she realized that she had conceived, I was despised and looked on with disrespect. May the Lord judge [who has done right] between you and me.” 6 But Abram said to Sarai, “Look, your maid is entirely in your hands and subject to your authority; do as you please with her.” So, Sarai treated her harshly and humiliated her, and Hagar fled from her.
7 But [b]the Angel of the Lord found her by a spring of water in the wilderness, on the road to [Egypt by way of] Shur. 8 And He said, “Hagar, Sarai’s maid, where did you come from and where are you going?” And she said, “I am running away from my mistress Sarai.” 9 The Angel of the Lord said to her, “Go back to your mistress, and submit [c]humbly to her authority.” 10 Then the Angel of the Lord said to her, “I will greatly multiply your descendants so that they will be too many to count.” 11 The Angel of the Lord continued,
“Behold, you are with child,
And you will bear a son;
And you shall name him Ishmael (God hears),
Because the Lord has heard and paid attention to your persecution (suffering).
“He (Ishmael) will be a wild donkey of a man;
His hand will be against every man [continually fighting]
And every man’s hand against him;
And he will dwell in defiance of all his brothers.”
13 Then she called the name of the Lord who spoke to her, “You are [d]God Who Sees”; for she said, “Have I not even here [in the wilderness] remained alive after [e]seeing Him [who sees me with understanding and compassion]?” 14 Therefore the well was called Beer-lahai-roi (Well of the Living One Who Sees Me); it is [f]between Kadesh and Bered.
15 So Hagar gave birth to Abram’s son; and Abram named his son, to whom Hagar gave birth, [g]Ishmael (God hears). 16 Abram was eighty-six years old when Hagar gave birth to Ishmael.” (Bible Gateway Amplified 2022)
Again, they should have waited for God’s plan, but they didn’t have enough faith that God was going to come thru with his promise.
Abraham must not have learned from his mistake, because he tells Abimelech that Sarah is his sister not his wife again deceiving him. Is Sarah his sister? Sarah is his half-sister, but they were being deceitful. It seems Abraham’s faith wasn’t strong enough to trust that God would protect them, see Bible verses below:
Genesis 20:1 “Now Abraham journeyed from there toward the Negev (the South country) and settled between Kadesh and Shur; then he lived temporarily in Gerar. 2 Abraham [a]said [again] of Sarah his wife, “She is my sister.” So [b]Abimelech king of Gerar sent and took [c]Sarah [into his harem]. 3 But God came to Abimelech in a dream during the night, and said, “Behold, you are a dead man because of the woman whom you have taken [as your wife], for she is another man’s wife.” 4 Now Abimelech had not yet come near her; so he said, “Lord, will you kill a people who are righteous and innocent and blameless [regarding Sarah]? 5 Did Abraham not tell me, ‘She is my sister?’ And she herself said, ‘He is my brother.’ In the integrity of my heart and innocence of my hands I have done this.” 6 Then God said to him in the dream, “Yes, I know you did this in the integrity of your heart, for it was I who kept you back and spared you from sinning against Me; therefore, I did not give you an opportunity to touch her. 7 So now return the man’s wife, for he is a prophet, and he will pray for you, and you will live. But if you do not return her [to him], know that you shall die, you and all who are yours (your household).”
8 So Abimelech got up early in the morning and called all his servants and told them all these things; and the men were terrified. 9 Then Abimelech called Abraham and said to him, “What have you done to us? And how have I offended you that you have brought on me and my kingdom a great sin? You have done to me what ought not to be done [to anyone].” 10 And Abimelech said to Abraham, “What have you encountered or seen [in us or our customs], that you have done this [unjust] thing?” 11 Abraham said, “Because I thought, ‘Surely there is no fear or reverence of God in this place, and they will kill me because of my wife.’ 12 Besides, she actually is my [half] sister; she is the daughter of my father [Terah], but not of my mother; and she became my wife. 13 When God caused me to wander from my father’s house, I said to her, ‘This kindness and loyalty you can show me: at every place we stop, say of me, “He is my brother.”’” 14 Then Abimelech took sheep and oxen and male and female slaves, and gave them to Abraham, and returned Sarah his wife to him [as God commanded]. 15 So Abimelech said, “Behold, my land is before you; settle wherever you please.” 16 Then to Sarah he said, “Look, I have given this brother of yours a [d]thousand pieces of silver; it is to compensate you [for all that has happened] and to vindicate your honor before all who are with you; before all men you are cleared and compensated.” 17 So Abraham prayed to God, and God healed Abimelech and his wife and his maids, and they again gave birth to children, 18 for the Lord had securely closed the wombs of all [the women] in Abimelech’s household because of Sarah, Abraham’s wife.” (Bible Gateway Amplified Bible 2022)
Now the scene changes and we see Ishmael do something that offends Sarah. The Bible says Ishmael mocks Isaac and they throw Hagar and her son, Ishmael out of their camp to fend for themselves in the wilderness, read the Bible verses below:
Genesis 21:9 “Now [as time went on] Sarah saw [Ishmael] the son of Hagar the Egyptian, whom she had borne to Abraham, [b]mocking [Isaac]. 10 Therefore she said to Abraham, “Drive out this maid and her son, for the son of this maid shall not be an heir with my son Isaac.” 11 The situation [c]distressed Abraham greatly because of his son [Ishmael]. 12 God said to Abraham, “Do not let it distress you because of Ishmael and your maid; whatever Sarah tells you, listen to her and do what she asks, for your descendants will be named through Isaac. 13 And I will also make a nation of [Ishmael] the son of the maid, because he is your descendant.” 14 So Abraham got up early in the morning and took bread and a skin of water and gave them to Hagar, putting them on her shoulder, and gave her the boy, and sent her [d]away. And she left [but lost her way] and wandered [aimlessly] in the Wilderness of Beersheba.
15 When the water in the skin was all gone, Hagar abandoned the boy under one of the bushes. 16 Then she went and sat down opposite him, about a bowshot away, for she said, “Do not let me see the boy die.” And as she sat down opposite him, she raised her voice and wept. 17 God heard the voice of the boy, and the angel of God called to Hagar from heaven and said to her, “What troubles you, Hagar? Do not be afraid, for God has heard the voice of the boy from where he is [resting]. 18 Get up, help the boy up, and hold him by the hand, for I will make him a great nation.” 19 Then God opened her eyes and she saw a well of water; and she went and filled the [empty] skin with water and gave the boy a drink.
20 God was with Ishmael, and he grew and developed; and he lived in the wilderness and became an [expert] archer. 21 He lived in the wilderness of Paran; and his mother took a wife for him from the land of Egypt.” (Bible Gateway Amplified Bible 2022)
What I find very interesting about this is that God provides for Ishmael and Hagar, even promising to make Ishmael a great nation. Again, God is providing and cleaning up our humanly mistakes.
Now we could argue that God knows everything, and he does! And that all these things needed to come to pass. Ishmael being born so he can become a great nation providing lineage and that God would bless all the women and open their wombs allowing Abimelech and his wife and maids to have children.
As humans, we make a lot of mistakes. We can count at least three things that Abraham and Sarah did that could have potentially ruined the plan of Jesus Christ being born, Jesus Christ’s lineage coming from Isaac (Abraham’s son) But GOD made sure that our humanly mistakes didn’t ruin everything.
Has God saved you from yourself? He certainly has saved me from myself.