|Passage to Study: Genesis
Passage to Read with class: Genesis 21:9-21
Texts for memorization: - Revelation 22:17 and/or Isaiah 55:1
1. To demonstrate that we experience in life the consequences of our decisions and
2. To teach that sin causes separation from God and also among individuals.
3. To show that blessings lost on account of sin may be obtained through the grace and
mercy of God.
4. To make the application that the thirst of the soul is satisfied only in the Lord Jesus
The story of Hagar is depicted in Scripture in two stages.
1. At the outset when Hagar was expecting Ishmael and fled from Abraham's home;
2. When Ishmael was 17 years of age and Hagar was expelled with her son from Abraham's
((Note: Details of how Ishmael came to be born may be left out, depending on the age and
maturity of the students))
- Years earlier, shortly before Ishmael's birth, Sara's slave Hagar had fled to the desert
to escape the heavy hand of her mistress. (Gen.16)
- At that time the angel of the Lord had found her and spoken to her need.
- It was because in her pride she had despised Sara that she was in this situation, and
the remedy was to return and submit herself to her
- The angel also told her about the future of the son who was to be born to her, and that
he was to be called Ishmael, meaning "God hears" (Ge.16.11).
- By the time the problem with Isaac occurred, it seems Hagar has forgotten what God had
SCENE No. 1. Abraham's home.
DEVELOPMENT of the lesson:
- Abraham prepares a great feast for his son Isaac.
- Ishmael, his half brother, was born as a result of Abraham and Sarah's failure of faith.
- He eventually became the forefather of the Arabs who, even in our times, are causing
problems for Israel.
- Ishmael, at this time about 17 years of age, is found by Sarah to be mocking his half
- No doubt he is envious of Isaac, the special Son of the Promise that God made to Abraham
when He called him to leave Ur more than 25 years earlier.
>> Cns. A similar jealous spirit is found in every human heart. This can be
seen, for example, in many older children in their treatment of others younger than
- Nothing is said about Hagar correcting her son for his bad behavior, something that as a
mother should have concerned her.
>> Apl. Parents have a God-given responsibility for their children. Teach that
children need to understand this when being corrected by parents.
- Motivated by carnal feelings, Ishmael is incapable of appreciating the spiritual destiny
of Abraham's second son.
- Naturally, Sarah is hurt when her son is mocked.
- She demands that Ishmael and his mother be sent away from the home.
>> Cns. It is possible that Sarah's attitude will seem extreme to students, but her
zeal is based on what she knows are God's plans for her son.
>> Apl. In a similar fashion, we sinners are found far from God, our behavior
displeasing to God because we ARE sinners.
>> Cmt. Society lacks a sense of justice and bad behaviour is tolerated. This has
led to problems of understanding God's punishment of sin.
- Hagar and her son lost the protection and comforts of Abraham's home a because of sin.
>> Apl. Sinners have lost all their privileges on account of sin. Ex.
Provision and eternal protection God intended for mankind at creation.
SCENE No. 2. Outside Abraham's home, Ishmael and Hagar are being sent away.
DEVELOPMENT of the lesson:
- God's purposes with regard to Isaac were not to be complicated by the presence of
someone who was already interfering in Isaac's place and importance relative to the
- It distressed Abraham greatly to send away Ishmael, for he loved his son.
- However, God told him to comply, for divine righteousness required that it be so.
>> Apl. The heart of God feels it keenly when there is distance between Himself and
us due to His righteousness and on account of our sin.
>> Apl. Ask the children if there is distance between them and God at the moment.
SCENE No. 3. A desert scene near an oasis.
DEVELOPMENT of the lesson:
- Hagar in her desperation seems to have forgotten that years before she had spoken with
the God who hears and sees years before. (Gen.16:13)
- At that time He had promised she would have numerous descendants (Ge.16.10).
- Hagar has cast Ishmael under a desert bush because she can not bear to watch the boy
die, but has nothing with which to maintain life in him.
>> Apl. This is also the case of the sinner. No person can give him the
spiritual help he needs in order to live eternally.
- God, merciful as always with the needy, comes right at the moment of greatest
- He comes to supply their need, and reveals to Hagar the existence of a well of water.
>> Apl. God reveals to us in His Word the existence of a fountain from which we can
draw living water. The source is found in the Lord Jesus Christ.
- Hagar obeys and Ishmael is saved from dying.
SCENE No. 4.
SUGGESTION of an APPLICATION:
- Psalm 42:1 says: "As the hart panteth after the waterbrooks, so pants my soul after
Thee, O God."
- The animal referred to is thirsty and God provides the water it needs.
- In the same way, we who are sinners need and thirst for God, and He has made abundant
provision in Christ.
- This water is a type of the Holy Spirit, who alone satisfies the soul's thirst.
- The cross is the fountain of this water of blessing, and it is through the Bible that we
come to know what the cross has provided.
SUGGESTION for a VISUAL AID:
A heart with eyes can be made with a curved slit above the open eyes.
A strip of paper the same colour as the heart can then be slipped in from behind, to show
- Taking the heart in the left hand, the paper strip can be slipped downwards with the
right hand, thus seeming to close, and then open the eyes.
If the paper is not totally removed on opening the eyes, the operation can be repeated
>> The object is to show how Hagar was close to a fount of water but her eyes had
failed to see it. When her eyes were opened, she immediately drank from it's content
to prevent death and obtain life.
>> Apl. The fount of salvation is close, but people do not realize it's nearness.
>> Qsn. Many have had their eyes opened but have failed to trust in the Only One who
can satisfy their need.