March 13, 2008




and sons ISHMAEL and ISAAC

 The following is a five-minute radio script my husband and I presented in Connellsville, PA., while he was serving as pastor of a church in that community.

Moderator: Sarah and Abraham were among God’s faithful servants. Abraham, because of his faith, was to be the father of nations, although he was childless. He was viewed as a father figure—dignified, firm in his faith, humane and respected by local rulers wherever he went.

Then God told Abraham: “Leave your home and travel to a land that I will show you. If you do this, I will make of you a great nation.”

Abraham and Sarah packed their household and moved to Canaan. The Lord told him: “To your descendants I will give this land.” This promise was repeated over and over to Abraham, despite the fact that in their 70s, he and Sarah were still childless.

Because of a famine, Abraham and Sarah moved again. They wondered about God’s promise to Abraham. What descendants would be as countless as the dust of the earth? They certainly wouldn’t be producing children! Not at their age!

Then God visited Abraham in a vision, saying: “Do not be afraid, Abraham. I am giving you a very great reward.”

Abraham: Lord God, what can you give me? I have no standing among men because the heir to my household is Eliezer Damascus. My heir is going to be a slave born in my house!

God answered: The slave shall not be your heir. Your heir shall be a child of your own body.

Abraham put his faith in the Lord…At a later time, Abraham and Sarah sat together for their devotion time. Let’s listen to their conversation.
Sarah: Abraham, I know you’re tired of hearing me, but the tragedy of my life is not having your child. It’s not just that I have not borne a child. It’s that in not having a child, my life is viewed as having little importance.

Abraham: You know, Sarah, that I have grown to love you deeply through the years.

Sarah: I know, but that doesn’t calm the pain of my barrenness. We are so old. If you are going to have a child like God promised, something must be done. I have an idea. Hagar has been our faithful slave in all our travels. Maybe we have misunderstood God’s words. Maybe he intends Hagar to produce the child.

Abraham: I understand that infertility has been a real struggle for you, Sarah. I thought God said it would be our child, but you may be right. Maybe God does want us to use

Sarah: I’m too old to have a child. Go to Hagar. Her child will be mine. That way, you will have the descendents God promised.

Abraham: That must be what God wants. Hagar will give us a child……

Several months later:
Abraham: I was so surprised Hagar was able to bear my child so soon, Sarah. I’m 85, and I’m finally going to be a father!

Sarah: She’s treated me terribly since she conceived! She despises me, mocking and taunting me with her success! Like I’m a lesser person because I couldn’t give you a child! I can’t stand her gloating!

Abraham: She’s your maid. Do what you will with her.
Sarah: I’ll take care of her.

A week later.
Sarah: I chastised her, and she ran away. But she returned. She knows where her bread and butter is.

Two years later.
Sarah: Oh, Abraham, Ishmael is such a cute baby. Don’t you love how he snuggles up to all of us, loving us and playing with us?

Abraham: It’s nice you and Hagar have finally become friends, able to share caring for our child.

Sarah: Ishmael must be the child God promised you.

Thirteen years later.
Sarah: Abraham, what do you make of those three men that visited you today? They must have been nuts, saying I was going to have a child at my age, 90! Yet, they seemed sincere and holy.

Abraham: I agree. It was an odd visit. When they asked me if “anything was too hard for the Lord?” I realized they were angels send by God. Their message, though strange, had to be real.

Sarah: You mean, there really is still hope?  We will have pleasure at our age, and our own child?

About five years later, the day of Isaac’s weaning party.
Sarah: Abraham, I still cannot get over this miracle. Isaac, our precious child, born in our last years! God is so good. To think, I laughed at those angels of God. But who would have thought that I should have been given a child to nurse?

Abraham: Yes, the miracle is great. God does keep his promises. We will celebrate today!

Sarah: Isaac is sure growing up fast.

The next day:
Sarah: Abraham, you should have seen how Ishmael mocked me yesterday. And how he was teasing Isaac, a small child! Hagar is so jealous of me now that I have your son too! Those two are making our lives miserable. Send them away, so we can live peaceably!

Abraham: But Ishmael is my son, too. Can’t anything be done? God, please help me!

The next morning.
Abraham (sadly): Sarah, I have prayed about the problem of you and Hagar. Even though it greatly distresses me, God assured me He will care for Hagar and Ishmael if I send them away. I got up early this morning and gave them bread and a bottle of water and sent them on their way.

Sarah: I thank God, and pray he will care for them as He said. Now we can raise Isaac in peace, and be assured he receives his proper inheritance as our firstborn son.

Moderator: Sarah lived to a ripe old age of 127, instructing Isaac in wisdom and piety without the discord that had been created by the two who had mocked her. Isaac became the father of Jacob, father of the twelve tribes of Israel. It is believed by some that Ishmael came to be the father of the Turks.










  1. Ishmael came to be the father of the Arabs, God ordered Abraham to leave them in Mecca so God would raise him up a great nation. “And as for Ishmael, I have heard you: I will surely bless him; I will make him fruitful and will greatly increase his numbers. He will be the father of twelve rulers, and I will make him into a great nation. (From the NIV Bible, Genesis 17:20)”.

    Comment by breeze — July 2, 2009 @ 12:48 pm | Reply

  2. My head pounds, as if being beaten by a sledge hammer, from all the insanity you speak. Poor Hagar! Poor Sweet-African Hagar. How despised and rejected you are. You are a slave of no one!

    Comment by Comment — August 23, 2009 @ 11:32 pm | Reply

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