Hagar and the Son – Gospel in Life

Hagar and the Son

Tim Keller |  December 1, 1996

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  • The Bible
Genesis 16:1-16
RS 272-11


When people in the Bible have close encounters with God, in almost every situation they say, “I can’t believe I’m still alive,” and Hagar is one of them.

In Genesis 16, we see the story of Hagar, the maidservant of Sarah. Sarah’s and Hagar’s experiences overlap. We’re told Sarah mistreats Hagar, and it’s so bad that Hagar, a pregnant woman, flees out into the desert. We have here a story that will tell you the gospel. This is the gospel according to Hagar.

We’ll look at 1) how we can understand the narrative, and 2) a few important principles we can draw from here.

Genesis 16:1–16

The tale of Hagar, Sarah, and Abraham in Genesis 16:1-16 sheds light on how society viewed women back in the Bible times, especially Sarah’s intense longing for a baby. The story underlines the consequences of Abraham’s decision to have a baby with Hagar, highlighting the importance of God’s grace over our own efforts. It also helps us deeply understand the feelings and actions of Sarah and Hagar, encouraging us to break free from societal expectations and rely on God’s love and grace.


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