Reflection of the life of Hagar in the desert of Beersheba leaves us as a teaching, despite the fact that we feel alone, wandering and wanting to let the promises of God in our hands die, because we feel incapable of moving forward. Well, if it was God who gave us the promise, He is the one who will sustain it. Despite our fears, He is the one who has sustained us in the midst of deserts and tribulations and who will finish what began in us (Phil 1:6).
Ishmael and Agar in the Beersheba Desert (Genesis 21:14-21)
14 And Abraham rose up early in the morning, and took bread, and a bottle of water, and gave it unto Hagar, putting it on her shoulder, and the child, and sent her away: and she departed, and wandered in the wilderness of Beersheba.
15 And the water was spent in the bottle, and she cast the child under one of the shrubs.
16 And she went, and sat her down over against him a good way off, as it were a bow shot: for she said, Let me not see the death of the child. And she sat over against him, and lift up her voice, and wept.
17 And God heard the voice of the lad; and the angel of God called to Hagar out of heaven, and said unto her, What aileth thee, Hagar? fear not; for God hath heard the voice of the lad where he is.
18 Arise, lift up the lad, and hold him in thine hand; for I will make him a great nation.
19 And God opened her eyes, and she saw a well of water; and she went, and filled the bottle with water, and gave the lad drink.
20 And God was with the lad; and he grew, and dwelt in the wilderness, and became an archer.
21 And he dwelt in the wilderness of Paran: and his mother took him a wife out of the land of Egypt.
Meaning of the Agar Name
The meaning of the Name Agar is “Escape” or “Outsider”.
Meaning of the name Ismael
The meaning of Ishmael is “God listens” or “God has heard”, according to the Word that God told Hagar: “Behold, thou art with child and shalt bear a son, and shalt call his name Ishmael; because the Lord hath heard thy affliction” (Ge 16:11).
Teaching about Hagar and Ishmael in the Bible
Many times have we been in the same situation as Hagar in the Beersheba Desert, alone, wandering, with fears and going through a desert of problems (Ge 21:14).
Besides this, Hagar had run out of the water in the bottle that Abraham had filled and wanted to leave her son Ishmael in the bush, the promise that God gave her, when she said “I will multiply thy seed exceedingly, that it shall not be numbered for multitude” (Ge 16:10).
Therefore, this situation has been very particular in the life of any believer, in the moments that we have gone through situations and problems, we wanted to leave everything that God has given us, even leave aside his promises.
Therefore, behold, I will allure her, and bring her into the wilderness, and speak comfortably unto her (Hosea 2:14).
God often has to take us to the desert just like Hagar and talk to us there, form us there and open our eyes there. God was the one who gave the promise to Hagar, therefore, he is the one who would do it and sustain that promise. In the middle of the desert, God wanted to teach Hagar that He was their provider (Ps 107:9), so he opened his eyes for her to see the source of Water and give her son Ishmael (His Promise) to drink (Ge 21:19).
That fountain of water is called Christ, it is the only one that can quench our thirst in the middle of the desert ( Jn 4: 13-14 ). It is he who strengthens us in tribulations and who affirms us in the promises of God (Phil. 4:13). The Lord has given promises to many, although many times we have felt like Hagar, unable to sustain what God gave us (2 Corinthians 12:9). But whoever started the work will finish it (Phil 1:6).
Arise, lift up the lad, and hold him in thine hand; for I will make him a great nation (Genesis 21:18).
The Lord tells us in Genesis 21:18, to hold what He gave us, because He will do great things. Let us not let the promises die, because just as David was formed in the desert, so God wants to make that promise in us in the midst of difficult situations.
And God was with the lad; and he grew, and dwelt in the wilderness, and became an archer (Genesis 21:20).
To conclude we can say that in the same way that Ishmael grew and learned to live in the desert, because “God was with him”, in the same way God wants to form our character in any circumstance. This word encourages us, because we see that despite a difficult beginning, God could form a strong person. The child who cried in a bush, God made him a skillful man with the bow that knew how to survive in the desert (Ge 21:16, 20).
Reflection on the life of Agar and Ishmael
- God is the one who sustains us and not man.
- God is the one who gives us encouragement.
- Maybe they can leave you alone, but God will not leave you.
- In the midst of any situation, God is our consolation.
- God is the one who quenches our thirst.
- What God promises, He will fulfill.
- Many times God allows deserts to mold our character.
Other Aspects of Agar’s life
Strengths and Achievements
- Mother of Abraham’s first son (Ismael), who was the founder of the Arab nations.
Weaknesses and Errors
- When he had to face problems, he had a tendency to run away from them.
- Her pregnancy provoked strong feelings of arrogance and pride.
Lessons of your Life
- God remains faithful in his plans and promises, even when people complicate the process.
- God shows that he knows us and wants us to know him.
Other Aspects of the Life of Ismael
Strengths and Achievements
- He was one of the first to receive the physical mark of God’s covenant: circumcision.
- He was known as an excellent archer and hunter.
- He became the father of twelve sons who were leaders of warrior tribes.
Lessons of your Life
- In his plans, God uses the mistakes of the people.