Genesis

Lesson 20 w/AnswersGenesis Chapters 15 through 18

Beginnings

In this lesson, we will cover multiple chapters of Genesis as we look at God’s covenant with Abram, and the stories behind the birth of Abram’s two sons. We will observe that God is an intentional God, with a plan and a purpose for each of us. We will also see that God is a patient God who loves us and wants only the best for us, but we have to first put our complete faith and trust in Him.

We will also discover that Abram, renamed "Abraham" by God, demonstrates his great faith in God on many occasions. Yet, like us, there are other times when he is weak, and falls short as well.

Read Genesis Chapters 15 through 18; then consider the following questions:

  1. What was Abram’s primary concern regarding his heir, and what did he think would happen as a result? (Gen. 15:1-3)
    1. ANSWER: He was concerned because he had no descendents; thus it was his fear that the chief servant in his household, Eliezer of Damascus, would inherit his estate.
  2. What was God’s response to Abram’s concern? Did God’s answer satisfy Abram’s concern? (Gen. 15:4-8)
    1. ANSWER: God promised Abram that he would have a son, and further, that his offspring would be as numerous as the stars. Abram believed God initially (verse 6), but shortly thereafter again expresses doubt (verse 8).
  3. God’s covenant with Abram, described in Genesis 15:9-21, will endure forever. Regarding the terms of the covenant, which part did Abram have to fulfill and which part did God have to fulfill?
    1. ANSWER: Abram had no responsibilities. God made this covenant with Abram, promising him a son and offspring that would number as many as the stars. All that Abram had to do was prepare the heifer, goat, and ram as God instructed; God did the rest.
  4. How did the birth of Abram’s first son come about? (Gen. 16:1-16)
    1. ANSWER: Sarai, his wife, gave him her maidservant, Hagar, to sleep with so that he could have children.
  5. How old was Abram when Ishmael was born? (Gen. 16:16)
    1. ANSWER: Abram was 86.
  6. Sarai and Hagar did not get along after Hagar became pregnant. Sarai was jealous and mistreated her, so the maidservant fled. While she was running away, the angel of Lord confronted her. What three things did the angel tell her? (Gen. 16:7-12)
    1. ANSWER 1: To go back to her mistress and submit to her;
    2. ANSWER 2: Gave a promise that her descendants would be too numerous to count;
    3. ANSWER 3: Foretold that she would have a son and name him Ishmael.
  7. In Chapter 15, who promised Abram that he would have offspring as numerous as the stars; and in Chapter 16, who told Sarai "I will so increase your descendants that they will be too numerous to count."?
    1. ANSWER: In Chapter 15, God, "the LORD", told Abram; but in Chapter 16, it was "the angel of the LORD". One could assume that they are one and the same.
  8. In Chapter 17, God visits with Abram again. Abram is now ninety-nine years old, and it has been thirteen years since Ishmael’s birth. God again makes a covenant with Abram. However, this one is a little different than the first one. Abram’s name is changed to Abraham, and he is instructed to keep a covenant, he and his descendants after him, for generations to come. What is the one covenant that God asks Abraham to keep? (Gen. 17:1-14)
    1. ANSWER: God prescribes the circumcision of every male member of Abram’s family, servants, and slaves, and every male member of all generations that follow; thus setting themselves apart to follow God through this one physical act.
  9. God then tells Abraham he is to no longer to call his wife Sarai; now she is Sarah. What specifically does God say will come from her? (Gen. 17:15-16)
    1. ANSWER 1: A son;
    2. ANSWER 2: She will be the "mother of nations";
    3. ANSWER 3: "Kings of peoples will come from her".
  10. What was the reaction of Abraham to God’s promise that Sarah would bear him a son, and how does his reaction compare to Sarah’s in the following chapter? (Gen 17:17-18 and Gen 18:1-15)
    1. ANSWER: Both of them laughed, and they did not believe that God could do such a thing, since both of them were old; Sarah was 90, and Abraham 99.
  11. When Sarah laughed because she thought that she was too old to have a child, what was the LORD’s response? (Gen. 18:14)
    1. ANSWER: "Is anything too hard for the LORD?".

In the course of our study, we continue to see the faithfulness of God who, in spite of our lack of faith, continues to love us and continues to carry out His will through us. What a great and loving God we serve! And just as He was faithful in his promises to Abraham and Sarah, He will be faithful in His promises to us.

And what a great verse to ponder is Genesis 18:14, "Is anything too hard for the LORD?". Keep that verse with you it. It will strengthen your faith; and it will amaze you at what God can do in your life, if you just have faith and trust completely in Him.

Thanks for being faithful in studying with us each lesson.

In Christ,

Wes

[2014]

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