Isaac: Genesis 17:15-21; 21:1-7
My mother is in her nineties, and my mind boggles at the thought of her giving birth…. no wonder Abraham fell on his face laughing! In an age when a woman’s whole identity lay in her ability to give her husband a son to be his heir, she was perceived as of less value, a failed wife, barren. God did not see her that way: he saw potential – not just to provide a nomadic shepherd’s heir, but a whole nation and kings – and the King of Kings!
That heir that Sarah birthed, was the beginning of the line that led to Jesus, and through his death and resurrection, he has made us co-heirs with Him! He has begun a new dynasty, ‘the household of faith’. Like Sarai, we have been given a new name – a new identity:
Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy. (1 Peter 2:10)
We have ‘an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade’ which is ‘kept in heaven for us’ 1 Peter 1:4
As it was in Sarah’s time, God’s desire is still to bless all nations through us, his people. You are ‘God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.’ (1 Peter 2:9)
As we approach the time when we celebrate a young girl giving birth to the Saviour of the World, our Coming King, we can remember that there was a plan, a purpose to all the history leading up to this: we, His chosen people, are to bless the nations! We can be bringers of ‘glad tidings of comfort and joy’ to our neighbours, families and work colleagues!
Father, thank you that right at the beginning of time you had a purpose to bless the nations through your people. Thank you that, through Jesus, you have redeemed us and claimed us as your people. Help us at this time to reach out to bless those around us with your hope.
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