Promises

Sarah Laughs at God-Genesis 18: 1-15

Theme: God keeps His promises.

Verse: Genesis 18:14- “Is anything too hard for the Lord?”

Introduction:

          How many of you have ever made a promise?

          Did you keep that promise? Sometimes it’s hard to keep a promise. You might forget all about it. But if you break a promise, it’s hard for people to trust you.

          When God makes a promise, He always keeps it. We can trust Him.

          God made a promise to Abram in Genesis 12:2(HCSB)- “I will make you into a great nation, I will bless you, I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing.”

          What promises did God make to Abram? (Discussion)

                   1. I will make you into a great nation.

                   2. I will bless you.

                   3. I will make your name great.

                   4. You will be a blessing.

          Abram believed God would keep his promises, but God put him to the test. Years and years and years went by and Abram and his wife Sarai had no children. Abram was confused. How could he become a great nation if he had no children?

          God changed Abram’s name to Abraham which meant “father of many nations.” Sarai’s name was changed to Sarah which meant “princess.”

          Our story takes place when Abraham was 100 years old and Sarah was 90, long past the age when it was possible to have children.

Story:

          It was too hot to do anything. Sarah reclined on cushions in the tent, her eyes almost closed.

          When she heard voices outside, her eyes popped open. Someone was here. Who would come to visit in the heat of the day?

          The tent flap opened, and her husband Abraham rushed in. “Quick! Make bread. Prepare a meal. We have guests.”

          “Who?”

          “Three men. I don’t know who they are or where they’re from, but I invited them to rest under the oak tree, and told them I would bring them food.”

          Grumbling under her breath, Sarah pushed herself up, wiped the sweat off her brow, and peeked out at the men.

          She added more wood to the fire. It was crazy to cook on such a hot day.

          Meanwhile, Abraham went out to the herd and chose a calf which he had a servant kill. He brought in chunks of meat for Sarah to cook.

          Finally, everything was ready. Abraham carried out beef, bread, cheese curds, and milk.

          Exhausted, Sarah plopped back down on the cushions. She hoped those men appreciated all her hard work.

          One man said, “Where’s your wife Sarah?”

          Her ears pricked up. How did they know her name? Why did they want to know about her?

          “In the tent,” Abraham said.

          The man said, “I will come back to you a year from now, and your wife Sarah will have a son.”

          Sarah laughed to herself. Was he crazy? She was ninety years old! Too old and shriveled to have a baby.

          The man said to Abraham, “Why did she laugh?”

          Her eyes widened. He’d heard her? She was so embarrassed.

          The man continued, “Why did Sarah laugh saying, ‘Can I really have a baby when I’m old?'”

          How did he know that’s what she’d thought?

          He continued, “Is anything too hard for God? At the appointed time I will come back to you, and in about a year she will have a son.”

        Only God could know that. Who was this man? She was suddenly afraid. “I didn’t laugh,” she said behind the tent flap.

          “No, you did laugh,” he said.

          She was ashamed. First, she’d laughed, and then she’d lied about it.   Could that be God out there? Long ago God had promised that Abraham would be the father of many nations, but she had given up believing it would happen.

          Would she really have a son now? Within a year? Oh, joy! That’s what she wanted more than anything.

          That year a little baby boy was born to them. They named him Isaac. Isaac would have a son named Jacob, and Jacob would have twelve sons. God changed Jacob’s name to Israel. The children of Israel would become the Jewish people, and today they are a great nation, just as God promised.

          God always keeps His promises. Is anything too hard for God? No, nothing.

          Has God made any promises to you? He sure has! The Bible is full of God’s promises. Let’s have a Bible drill to look up some of these promises. Read the verse and let’s figure out what the promise is.

Isaiah 41:10- God will strengthen and help you.

Psalm 32:7- God will protect you from trouble.

I John 1:9- God will forgive your sins if you confess them.

Philippians 4:19- God will meet all your needs.

James 1:5- If you ask for wisdom, He will give it to you.

Deuteronomy 31:8- God will be with you and never leave you.

John 3:16- Whoever believes in God will not perish but have everlasting life.

Mark 11:24- Whatever you ask for in prayer, believing, you will receive.

Joshua 1:9- God is with you wherever you go.

Psalm 34:17- God hears you when you cry and will deliver you.

Romans 8:28- All things work together for good for them who love God.

Romans 10:9- You will be saved if you believe Jesus died and rose again.

Philippians 4:6-7- When you trust God, He gives you peace.

God has given us so many promises, and you can trust that God will keep them, for God always keeps His promises.

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Beth Livingston

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