God Speaks Through Disasters

This blog post comes from an email received from Frontline Fellowship on 13th June 2017.

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DROUGHTS, STORMS and FIRES – IS GOD SPEAKING TO US?

“You will be punished by the Lord of Hosts with thunder and earthquake and great noise, with storm and tempest and the flame of devouring fire.” Isaiah 29:6

God’s Word on Natural Disasters
In the book of Amos 4:7-8 the Lord declares: “I also withheld rain from you when My harvest was still three months away. I sent rain on one town, but withheld it from another… yet you have not returned to Me, declares the Lord.”

Blaming God While Denying His Existence
The drought in the Cape followed by severe storms in Cape Town and the devastating fires in Knysna has sparked numerous articles and programmes alternately blaming God for the disasters, or claiming that these disasters prove that God does not exist. Similarly with the AIDS plague. “A man’s own folly ruins his life, yet his heart rages against the Lord.” Proverbs 19:3. Several religious leaders have asserted that the drought, storms and fires could not have been a judgment from God!

Are People Basically Good?
It would seem that these theologians and religious authorities share a basic assumption: that man is basically good. Because we are all, at heart, such good people, we could never be judged by a loving and merciful God who would seem to be just too soft and gentle to judge anybody anyway. After all, none of us would ever be selfish, greedy, deceitful, vengeful, dishonest, lustful or murderous. We are all basically good!

The Depravity of Man
Far from people being basically good, the Scriptures teach the innate depravity of man: “There is none righteous, no, not one; there is none who understands; there is none who seeks after God. They have all turned aside; they have together become unprofitable; there is none who does good, no, not one. Their throat is an open tomb; with their tongues they have practiced deceit; the poison of vipers is under their lips; whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness. Their feet are swift to shed blood; destruction and misery are in their ways; and the way of peace they have not known. There is no fear of God before their eyes.” Romans 3:10-18

“But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power.” 2 Timothy 3:1-5

“But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the Second Death.” Revelation 21:8

Learning from Calamities
In the light of these passages and the blessings of obedience and the curses of disobedience outlined in Deuteronomy 28, it would appear that the message of these natural disasters is being rejected by most journalists and theologians. It is a double grief when lives are lost and lessons are not learned. Every deadly calamity is a merciful call from our Holy God for us to repent. That was how the Lord Jesus responded to those who brought news to Him of the Galileans who had been massacred by Pontius Pilate in the Temple.

Jesus on Disasters
Jesus answered: “Do you suppose that these Galileans were worse sinners than all other Galileans, because they suffered such things? I tell you, no; but unless you repent you will all likewise perish.” Luke 13:2,3

Then the Lord referred to the disastrous fall of the tower in Siloam when eighteen died. “But unless you repent you will all likewise perish.” Luke 13:5

Compassionate Love in Action
There is a time to weep (Ecclesiastes 3:4) and we should grieve with those who grieve and render all practical help within our power. But we should also repent: “’Now, therefore,’ says the Lord, ‘Turn to Me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning.’ So rend your heart, and not your garments; return to the Lord your God, for He is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and of great kindness and He relents from doing harm.” Joel 2:12-13

This is the lesson we should learn from every deadly disaster: Repent!

Recognising Reality
Grieve that God is cursed for every catastrophe, but seldom praised for His wonderful Creation.

Lament that God makes the news headlines only when man mocks His power or questions His goodness, but tens-of-thousands of God’s acts of mercy, grace, protection, provision and patience receive no headlines.

Grieve that the Name of the only righteous Man who ever walked the earth is used as a swear word on T.V. screens and in cinemas across the world.

Grieve that God is blasphemed by the very same people who question why God does not restrain the consequences of their own rebellious actions.

What Could God Be Saying to Knysna?
Could God be speaking to Knysna which has hosted highly publicised “Pink Loerie Gay Pride” marches and parades and multiple high profile “gay weddings”.

Could God be Speaking to Cape Town
Could God be speaking to Cape Town where abortion kills thousands of babies every year, where gambling impoverishes the poor even more, where crime and violence stalk our streets daily, where the mayor organized inter-faith rain ceremonies and where our schools teach evolutionism, situation ethics and perversion?

The Judgments of God
In the wake of the catastrophic fires in Knysna and droughts and storms in Cape Town, we need to study afresh the Holiness and Justice of God and God’s Word to a nation.

“The Lion has roared – who will not fear? The Sovereign Lord has spoken – who can but prophesy?” Amos 3:8

“’I sent plagues among you… I killed your young men with the sword… yet you have not returned to Me’, declares the Lord.” Amos 4:10

“You are Just in these Judgments, You who are and who were the Holy One, because You have so judged; for they have shed the blood of Your saints and prophets… yes, Lord God Almighty, true and just are Your Judgments… they cursed the Name of God, but they refused to repent and glorify Him… they refused to repent of what they had done… and there were noises and thunderings and lightening and there was a great earthquake, such a might and great earthquake… and they cursed God.” Revelation 16:1-21

When Catastrophes Occur
Can God be speaking to a lost and careless world through these deadly disasters? Can these catastrophic calamities be a merciful call from a just God for us to repent?

In 2 Chronicles 7:12-14 the Lord declares: “When I shut up the Heavens so that there is no rain, if My people were called by My Name, will humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from Heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” Throughout the Bible natural disasters are seen as a judgment of God and a clear warning to us to humble ourselves and to pray and seek God’s face and turn from our wicked ways.

Repentance
It is time for us to take a fresh look at God’s Law and to structure our Repentance according to the Ten Commandments. Biblical repentance is not merely “feeling sorry” for our “failings and weaknesses”. What God calls wicked we should not try to redefine as some kind of “mistake”. Biblical Repentance involves: conviction, contrition and conversion requiring a change of mind, a change of heart and a change of life and demanding change of lifestyle and a change of behaviour.

“Seek the Lord while He may be found; call on Him while He is near. Let the wicked man forsake his way and the evil man his thoughts. Let him return to the Lord and He will have mercy on him and to our God for He will freely pardon.” Isaiah 55:6-7

The fact is that people are not basically good. We are naturally selfish, innately depraved and very wicked. Every deadly disaster, whether man-made or natural disaster, is a merciful call from the Holy God for us to Repent. “Cast away from you all the transgressions which you have committed and get yourselves a new heart and a new spirit. Why should you die?” Ezekiel 18:31

“Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord.” Acts 3:19

“The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart and saves such as have a contrite spirit” Psalm 34:18

“The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit, a broken and contrite heart, O God, You will not despise.” Psalm 51:17

Dr. Peter Hammond
Frontline Fellowship
P.O. Box 74 Newlands 7725
Cape Town South Africa
Tel: 021-689-4480
mission@frontline.org.za
www.frontline.org.za

See also: Severe Storm Strikes Cape TownSoli Deo Gloria

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The Friend of Africa

Dr David Livingstone in 1864 Born 19 March 1813 Blantyre, Scotland

Died 1 May 1873 (aged 60) Chief Chitambo’s Village, Kingdom of Kazembe (today Zambia)

Cause of death Malaria and internal bleeding due to dysentery

Resting place Westminster Abbey 51°29′58″N 0°07′39″W

Known for Spreading the Gospel and Exploration of Africa

Spouse(s) Mary (née Moffat; m. 1845 – 27 April 1862; her death); 6 children

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The FAMILY, FAITH and UPBRINGING of DAVID LIVINGSTONE

To view this article as a PowerPoint, with pictures, click here.

19 March 1813 marked the birth of Scottish Missionary David Livingstone.

The Fighting Missionary
The hero of the Battle of Waterloo, the Duke of Wellington, described Dr. David Livingstone as "The fighting parson."

The Friend of Africa
Jacob Wainwright, who had been rescued from slavery by Dr. Livingstone, described him as: "The friend of the African."

Practical Christianity
American journalist and explorer, Henry Morton Stanley, described Dr. Livingstone as: "A truly pious man, a man deeply imbued with real religious instincts. His religion… is of the true, practical kind, never losing a chance to manifest itself in a quiet, practical way, never demonstrative or loud. It is always at work, if not in deed, by shining example."

An Example of Excellence
Stanley described his attitude when he first arrived in Africa: "as prejudiced against religion as the worst infidel…" However, the example of David Livingstone, who had truly left all to follow Christ, converted Stanley. It is not so much what you say, but what you do that counts. Action is eloquence. David Livingstone said what he meant. He meant what he said and he did all he promised. He was true to his word.

Inspiring
David Livingstone was hailed in his lifetime as the greatest missionary explorer of all time. As one contemporary journalist described it: "the Christian’s Faith in God is strengthened by the author’s very survival of every imaginable danger. The abolitionist is inspired by the prospect of stopping the slave trade. Medical men are intrigued by Livingstone’s approach to disease and the value of his treatment for fever…" The incredible courage and sacrifices of David Livingstone inspired multiplied hundreds of men and women to dedicate their lives to Missions in Africa. What can we learn about the family and upbringing of David Livingstone, to understand his Faith, courage and vision?

David Livingstone preaching to Africans Born in Blantyre
David Livingstone was born 19 March 1813, in the industrial town of Blantyre, 8 miles from Glasgow. Today the largest city in Malawi is called Blantyre, in honour of the birthplace of David Livingstone.

The Father
His Father, Neil Livingstone, was a dedicated Christian who had met his future wife, Agnes, when he was apprenticed to a local tailor. He won the hand of the tailor’s daughter and became a tea salesman so that he could travel and preach the Gospel, distributing Evangelistic tracts to his customers door-to-door. Neil also taught at Sunday school and was a zealous member of a local Missionary Society, persistently promoting prayer meetings and Missionary causes. David Livingstone later wrote concerning his Father: "He deserved my lasting gratitude and homage for presenting me from infancy with a continuously consistent pious example."

Strict Standards
Neil Livingstone was also a strict disciplinarian who sought to bring up David in the fear of the Lord. At age 9, David was challenged to learn the longest chapter in the Bible: Psalm 119 (all 176 verses) off by heart in order to receive a copy of the New Testament. Because Neil had seen the ravaging effects of alcoholism, he was a teetotaller and persuaded his son to follow his example in abstaining from alcohol, for life.

The Mother
David’s mother, Agnes, was a gentle, small and delicate woman whose compassionate kindness and loving nature served as a counter-balance to her husband’s strict and austere rule. It was said that her son, David, inherited her remarkably bright eyes. Agnes instilled in her family, a scrupulous concern for cleanliness and immaculate appearance. Later, Henry Morton Stanley commented on the immaculate standards of David Livingstone to his men as they began their epic 999 day expedition across the Congo: "Dr. Livingstone shaved every day of the 4 months, I was with him in the field and you will shave every day!"

The Napoleonic Wars
David was born during the last years of the ruinous Napoleonic wars which devastated Europe. The economic impact of the 25 years of French Revolutionary and Napoleonic wars had left many unemployed in Britain and an economically depressed environment.

The Family
The Livingstone’s’ lived a very frugal lifestyle on a miniscule budget. The Livingstone family lived in a single room, ten feet by fourteen feet. Two baby boys had died in their infancy, David had one older surviving brother, John. Another brother, Charles, and two sisters, Janet and Agnes were born after David.

The Home
There was neither hot nor cold running water in the Tenement building and David had to walk many times a day down the tightly curved, brick staircase to fetch water from the pump in the yard, and heave it back up the stairs and along the corridor of the 3rd floor to their room. The Livingstone’s shared their Tenement with 24 other families. At night mattresses were pulled out from under the parents bed which was set into a recess in the wall. Privacy was non-existent and the family cooked, ate, sewed, studied and slept in that single room.

A Passion for Reading
David Livingstone borrowed extensively from the local library, particularly books on travel and science. William Wilberforce’s Practical Christianity had a major impact on his life and clearly influenced his life-long crusade against the slave trade. Sitting by the banks of the River Clyde, engrossed in a book, young David was startled to hear the desperate cries of a young girl and her baby brother drifting in a boat towards the weir of the old Mill. David immediately plunged into the icy waters and rescued them from disaster.

The Cotton Mill
At age 10, David began his full-time employment, 14 hours a day, 6 days a week, for the next 10 years at the Monteith and Company Cotton Spinning Factory. He was to be a piercer, to repair broken threads in spinning frames. David’s day began at 5:30am every morning as the bell was rung. Work would begin at 6am and continue until 8pm. The workers in the cotton mill had to work in tremendous heat and humidity. Steamed temperatures of 80 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit were considered ideal for the production of thread.

Physical Training
Every day David would have to walk an average of 34km, much of this in a crawling or stooping position, amongst and under the machinery, or balancing over it. One can imagine what tremendous physical training this was for his later transcontinental expeditions throughout Africa. Piercers received constant beatings from their supervisors to keep them moving through such long shifts, despite fatigue and exhaustion.

Hunger for Knowledge
Yet, David used his first week’s wages to purchase Ruddiman’s Rudiments of Latin. David managed to read in the factory by balancing his book on a portion of the spinning jenny so that he could catch sentence after sentence as he rushed by at his work. In this way he maintained fairly constant study undisturbed by the roar of the machinery. Less than 10% of the children who worked in the Cotton Mills ever learned to read or write. David not only learned to read and write, he taught himself Latin, Greek and Hebrew. After work, he would attend a night school, 8pm to 10pm. Then he returned home to study, often until midnight. His mother frequently had to take his books away before he would go to sleep.

Dr. Livingston Conversion
At age 12, David Livingstone came under intense conviction of sin and experienced a radical conversion to Christ. He wrote: "In the glow of love that Christianity inspired, I resolved to devote my life to the alleviation of human misery." He wrote: "That the Salvation of men ought to be the chief desire and aim of every Christian." He made a resolution that he would give to the cause of Missions all that he might earn beyond what was required for his subsistence.

Perseverance
At age 13, he attended an extra Latin class. When all the other students gave up, he alone remained in the class and the school teacher cancelled the lessons, not seeing the overzealous son of a tea merchant as worthy of his attention. David continued to learn Latin on his own.

The Grandfather
David’s grandfather, Neil Livingstone Senior, also had an impact on the upbringing of David. He had been a tenant farmer on the island of Ulva, off the West coast of Scotland. He was evicted by the English to open up the area for a vast sheep farm. He passed on what he had heard from his grandfather: "I have searched most carefully through all the traditions of our family, and I never could discover that there was a dishonest man among your forefathers. If therefore any of you, or any of your children, should take to dishonest ways, it will not be because it runs in our blood… I leave this precept with you; be honest!"

Thomas Burke
Another man who influenced David Livingstone was Thomas Burke, an old soldier who had fought in the Napoleonic Wars who would ring his bell to shatter the peace and quiet of Blantyre every Sunday morning to rouse the people to attend his early morning Prayer meeting. Burke was abrupt, direct and challenging. The Livingstone family faithfully supported him.

David Hogg
Another man who impressed David Livingstone was David Hogg, who from his deathbed challenged the young boy: "Now lad! Make religion the everyday business of your life and not a thing of fits and starts; for if you do not, temptation and other things will get the better of you!"

The Free Church
1832 was a special watershed year for the Livingstone family. Neil Livingstone, dissatisfied with the spiritual life of the Church of Scotland, changed his church membership to the Free Church. This required the Livingstones to walk to Hamilton, a nearby village for their Sunday worship services. Although they received many invitations to dine with families of the congregation, they chose to carry their own food and not impose upon the limited resources of the other families of the congregation, which they knew were also struggling financially. After Sunday lunch, the Livingstone family were treated to their one luxury, a barley sweet each. The Livingstones never accepted any hand-outs. They worked for everything they had.

Setting the Captives Free
The Free Church in Hamilton were strong supporters of Missions. In 1833, William Wilberforce’s lifelong crusade against slavery was successful. Slavery was abolished throughout the British Empire, by an act of Parliament. This inspired ever greater vision for Missions. Those who had been freed from physical slavery, now needed to be freed from spiritual slavery. Missionaries were needed to go to the ends of the earth!

Revival Fires
Books and tracts from the Revival movement sweeping America reached Scotland and created much excitement and deepening of spiritual life and vision. David Livingstone received a pamphlet written by Karl Gutzlaff, of the Netherlands Missionary Society. In it Gutzlaff appealed for medical missionaries to go to China. David was inspired at how a medical missionary could be much more effective in converting the lost. He had learned enough Latin to be able to understand most medical terms. He was remarkably well read and easily would pass the University entrance requirements. His chief obstacle would be lack of finances.

Dr. Peter Hammond
Frontline Fellowship
P.O. Box 74 Newlands 7725
Cape Town South Africa
Tel: 021-689-4480
Email:
mission@frontline.org.za
Website: www.frontline.org.za

See also:
The Challenge of Livingstone Today
Making Disciples of All Nations

Soli Deo Gloria

The Son of the Freewoman vs. the son of the bondwoman

Christian_islamHere is a comparison from the Holy Scriptures that deals with the age old problem why the Jihadists  engage in persecution, war and atrocities against Christian believers. This all started in the days of Genesis when Hagar the Egyptian, a handmaid (a servant girl) of Sarah, Abraham’s wife, was given to her husband to bear a child to her mistress. This child to be born, named Ishmael, was not the child God had ordained for Abraham and Sarah to have by His promise, which child was to be Isaac. No, Ishmael was the result of a birth through the flesh, not by God’s promise, as most people in the world rely on the flesh to meet their own personal needs and not going to God Almighty in the Spirit and receiving from Him according to His good will and divine purpose.

We often hear that the reasons for these Islamic jihadist conflicts, that persist today in the 21st Century, came about as a result of the “Crusaders’ massacres of Muslims” – who are incorrectly branded “Christian warlords” – but this is not the truth. A starting point could be that a real search through history should be undertaken to find out the truth behind the crusades and to help here is an in-depth article that can go a long way towards dispelling the myths created by uninformed people believing lies – Setting the Record Straight About the Crusades by Dr. Peter Hammond (Frontline Fellowship).

The real place one should go is to God’s Holy Word as He has passed it down through the ages and we should read the accounts of Scripture for therein you will find the Truth. We can go back to the Torah – the writings of Moses as God met with him face-to-face and spoke to him, revealing all that had to be recorded for His Creation’s benefit. So, let us take up the Historical and True account from God Almighty, in the beginning … in Genesis.

We read in Genesis 15:1 to 6 that ~

… the word of the LORD came unto Abram in a vision, saying, Fear not, Abram: I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward. And Abram said, Lord GOD, what wilt thou give me, seeing I go childless, and the steward of my house is this Eliezer of Damascus? And Abram said, Behold, to me thou hast given no seed: and, lo, one born in my house is mine heir. And, behold, the word of the LORD came unto him, saying, This shall not be thine heir; but he that shall come forth out of thine own bowels shall be thine heir. And he brought him forth abroad, and said, Look now toward heaven, and tell the stars, if thou be able to number them: and he said unto him, So shall thy seed be. And he believed in the LORD; and he counted it to him for righteousness.

Now we see from the preceding Scriptures that God Almighty had told Abraham (Abram) that an heir would come forth out of his own bowels – in other words, be born from his loins, his seed. Abraham would father his own heir by the promise from God. Although God gave the promise, we then read that Sarah (Sarai) wanted a child, and as she bare no children to her husband, she got ahead of God’s ordained plan of promise as we read in Genesis 16:1-16 ~

Gen 16:1  Now Sarai Abram’s wife bare him no children: and she had an handmaid, an Egyptian, whose name was Hagar.
Gen 16:2  And Sarai said unto Abram, Behold now, the LORD hath restrained me from bearing: I pray thee, go in unto my maid; it may be that I may obtain children by her. And Abram hearkened to the voice of Sarai. Gen 16:3  And Sarai Abram’s wife took Hagar her maid the Egyptian, after Abram had dwelt ten years in the land of Canaan, and gave her to her husband Abram to be his wife.
Gen 16:4  And he went in unto Hagar, and she conceived: and when she saw that she had conceived, her mistress was despised in her eyes. Gen 16:5  And Sarai said unto Abram, My wrong be upon thee: I have given my maid into thy bosom; and when she saw that she had conceived, I was despised in her eyes: the LORD judge between me and thee. Gen 16:6  But Abram said unto Sarai, Behold, thy maid is in thy hand; do to her as it pleaseth thee. And when Sarai dealt hardly with her, she fled from her face. Gen 16:7  And the angel of the LORD found her by a fountain of water in the wilderness, by the fountain in the way to Shur. Gen 16:8  And he said, Hagar, Sarai’s maid, whence camest thou? and whither wilt thou go? And she said, I flee from the face of my mistress Sarai.
Gen 16:9  And the angel of the LORD said unto her, Return to thy mistress, and submit thyself under her hands. Gen 16:10  And the angel of the LORD said unto her, I will multiply thy seed exceedingly, that it shall not be numbered for multitude. Gen 16:11  And the angel of the LORD said unto her, Behold, thou art with child, and shalt bear a son, and shalt call his name Ishmael; because the LORD hath heard thy affliction. Gen 16:12  And he will be a wild man; his hand will be against every man, and every man’s hand against him; and he shall dwell in the presence of all his brethren. Gen 16:13  And she called the name of the LORD that spake unto her, Thou God seest me: for she said, Have I also here looked after him that seeth me? Gen 16:14  Wherefore the well was called Beerlahairoi; behold, it is between Kadesh and Bered.
Gen 16:15  And Hagar bare Abram a son: and Abram called his son’s name, which Hagar bare, Ishmael. Gen 16:16  And Abram was fourscore and six years old, when Hagar bare Ishmael to Abram.

We read that the child that was born to Abraham, at age 86, was through the doing of his wife Sarah and not through the promise of God. Therefore, the birth of Ishmael was not by promise, but by the will of the flesh – man’s fleshly desire. When Hagar the Egyptian conceived by Abraham, there already came about resentment as the bondwoman (handmaid, servant) despised the freewoman her mistress Sarah as we read in Genesis 16:4 and 5. We see that the freewoman (Judeo-Christianity) would be despised from that point by the bondwoman (Islam).

Hagar was in Sarah’s hand to do with her as she pleased. Sarah was the mistress, Hagar the handmaid, and so when Sarah dealt hardly with her servant, the handmaid fled from her. Later we read that the angel of the LORD finds Hagar and tells her that she must return to her mistress and submit herself under her (Sarah’s) hands. Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary, reads on this account: “Whither wilt thou go? Thou art running into sin; if Hagar return to Egypt, she will return to idol gods, and into danger in the wilderness through which she must travel. Recollecting who we are, would often teach us our duty. Inquiring whence we came, would show us our sin and folly. Considering whither we shall go, discovers our danger and misery. And those who leave their space and duty, must hasten their return, how mortifying soever it be. The declaration of the Angel, “I will,” shows this Angel was the eternal Word and Son of God. Hagar could not but admire the Lord’s mercy, and feel, Have I, who am so unworthy, been favoured with a gracious visit from the Lord? She was brought to a better temper, returned, and by her behaviour softened Sarai, and received more gentle treatment.” It is a case of flesh (world) versus spirit (heaven). We also learn the personality account of the child born of the flesh to Hagar the Egyptian where we read ~

Gen 16:11 And the angel of the LORD said unto her, Behold, thou art with child, and shalt bear a son, and shalt call his name Ishmael; because the LORD hath heard thy affliction. Gen 16:12 And he will be a wild man; his hand will be against every man, and every man’s hand against him; and he shall dwell in the presence of all his brethren. [writer’s emphasis]

Today, this is truly a fulfilment of this prophesy. Ishmael (Islam) is a wild man as we see around the world how Islamists continue with much violence in Islamic countries, especially in the 10-40 window states. War, tyranny, persecution and martyrdom against Christians, terrorism and jihadist activities, including the enforcement of Sharia Law take place worldwide, and Islam’s hand is against every man and every man’s hand against him in self defence to uphold law and order. The last portion of Genesis 16:12 is also fulfilled as Mohammedans do live in the presence of all his brethren – children born both to Sarah (free) and to Hagar (bond) from Abraham. The Arab nations in and around Israel proves this point.

From the following Scriptures we see God Almighty enters into a covenant with Abraham and as the Scriptures unfold you will see that the covenant comes through the seed of the freewoman and not the bondwoman. Let us read the Scriptures where God Almighty sets up an everlasting covenant with Abraham and his seed after him, in Genesis 17:1-7 ~

Gen 17:1  And when Abram was ninety years old and nine, the LORD appeared to Abram, and said unto him, I am the Almighty God; walk before me, and be thou perfect. Gen 17:2  And I will make my covenant between me and thee, and will multiply thee exceedingly. Gen 17:3  And Abram fell on his face: and God talked with him, saying, Gen 17:4  As for me, behold, my covenant is with thee, and thou shalt be a father of many nations. Gen 17:5  Neither shall thy name any more be called Abram, but thy name shall be Abraham; for a father of many nations have I made thee. Gen 17:6  And I will make thee exceeding fruitful, and I will make nations of thee, and kings shall come out of thee. Gen 17:7  And I will establish my covenant between me and thee and thy seed after thee in their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be a God unto thee, and to thy seed after thee.

Sarah, who was previously named Sarai, who never had any child and was barren, would now be called Sarah and God would “bless her, and she shall be a mother of nations; kings of people shall be of her.” This is a definite promise from God Almighty, unlike the act of the flesh that preceded when Sarai herself gave her handmaid Hagar the Egyptian to her husband Abram to father her a child. Abraham and Sarah, both being “past the age” of child-bearing was now receiving the promise from God. Not only would Isaac be born to them, but an everlasting covenant with him would be established and that everlasting covenant would be with Isaac and not Ishmael. We read the account in God’s Holy Word in Genesis 17:15-22 ~

Gen 17:15  And God said unto Abraham, As for Sarai thy wife, thou shalt not call her name Sarai, but Sarah shall her name be. Gen 17:16  And I will bless her, and give thee a son also of her: yea, I will bless her, and she shall be a mother of nations; kings of people shall be of her. Gen 17:17  Then Abraham fell upon his face, and laughed, and said in his heart, Shall a child be born unto him that is an hundred years old? and shall Sarah, that is ninety years old, bear? Gen 17:18  And Abraham said unto God, O that Ishmael might live before thee! Gen 17:19  And God said, Sarah thy wife shall bear thee a son indeed; and thou shalt call his name Isaac: and I will establish my covenant with him for an everlasting covenant, and with his seed after him. Gen 17:20  And as for Ishmael, I have heard thee: Behold, I have blessed him, and will make him fruitful, and will multiply him exceedingly; twelve princes shall he beget, and I will make him a great nation. Gen 17:21  But my covenant will I establish with Isaac, which Sarah shall bear unto thee at this set time in the next year. Gen 17:22  And he left off talking with him, and God went up from Abraham.

In the succeeding Scripture portions we read of the promised child Isaac being born to his parents who were “both beyond years of childbearing” – so they thought at 100 and 90 years of age – but is was exactly as God Almighty promised! And an everlasting covenant by God was established with Isaac and his seed. We also read:

Gen 18:13  And the LORD said unto Abraham, Wherefore did Sarah laugh, saying, Shall I of a surety bear a child, which am old? Gen 18:14  Is any thing too hard for the LORD? At the time appointed I will return unto thee, according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son. Gen 18:15  Then Sarah denied, saying, I laughed not; for she was afraid. And he said, Nay; but thou didst laugh. Gen 18:16  And the men rose up from thence, and looked toward Sodom: and Abraham went with them to bring them on the way. Gen 18:17  And the LORD said, Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do; Gen 18:18  Seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him? Gen 18:19  For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the LORD, to do justice and judgment; that the LORD may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him.

We again pick up how the bondwoman’s child Ishmael mocks at the child of promise being Isaac. In today’s society we still see the scorn and mocking of the Seed of promise, our Lord Jesus Christ, by Islamists. Even in their Quran (Surah 10:68-70) they question “God has begotten a son!” and they mock saying that “No son did God beget, …” (Surah 23:91), a contradiction of what was revealed in God’s Holy Word more than 570 years before Mohammed was “supposed to have received a further revelation.”

The promised Seed (that would bruise Satan’s head – Genesis 3:15) came through this genealogy; as we read in Matthew 1 (shortened by writer) ~

Mat 1:1  The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham. Mat 1:2  Abraham begat Isaac; and Isaac begat Jacob; and Jacob begat Judas and his brethren; …
Mat 1:6  And Jesse begat David the king; and David the king begat Solomon of her that had been the wife of Urias; … Mat 1:15  And Eliud begat Eleazar; and Eleazar begat Matthan; and Matthan begat Jacob; Mat 1:16  And Jacob begat Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called Christ.

Let us reiterate – Abraham begat Isaac; and Isaac begat Jacob; … And Jesse begat David the king; … And Jacob begat Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called Christ.

Children of God Almighty are born-again through the promise – the seed of Abraham, the seed of David, the Seed of Jesus Christ! Not only did Ishmael mock the child of promise Isaac, the son of the bondwoman would not be heir with the son of promise, even Isaac, but the bondwoman Hagar the mother of Ishmael also took for him a wife out of Egypt – they still remained in bondage. Egypt is a type of the world, the fleshly system, one that remains bound and in bondage. The following account reads as follows in Genesis 21:1 through 21 ~

Gen 21:1  And the LORD visited Sarah as he had said, and the LORD did unto Sarah as he had spoken. Gen 21:2  For Sarah conceived, and bare Abraham a son in his old age, at the set time of which God had spoken to him. Gen 21:3  And Abraham called the name of his son that was born unto him, whom Sarah bare to him, Isaac. Gen 21:4  And Abraham circumcised his son Isaac being eight days old, as God had commanded him.
Gen 21:5  And Abraham was an hundred years old, when his son Isaac was born unto him. Gen 21:6  And Sarah said, God hath made me to laugh, so that all that hear will laugh with me. Gen 21:7  And she said, Who would have said unto Abraham, that Sarah should have given children suck? for I have born him a son in his old age. Gen 21:8  And the child grew, and was weaned: and Abraham made a great feast the same day that Isaac was weaned. Gen 21:9  And Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian, which she had born unto Abraham, mocking. Gen 21:10  Wherefore she said unto Abraham, Cast out this bondwoman and her son: for the son of this bondwoman shall not be heir with my son, even with Isaac. Gen 21:11  And the thing was very grievous in Abraham’s sight because of his son. Gen 21:12  And God said unto Abraham, Let it not be grievous in thy sight because of the lad, and because of thy bondwoman; in all that Sarah hath said unto thee, hearken unto her voice; for in Isaac shall thy seed be called. Gen 21:13  And also of the son of the bondwoman will I make a nation, because he is thy seed. Gen 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. Gen 21:15  And the water was spent in the bottle, and she cast the child under one of the shrubs. Gen 21:16  And she went, and sat her down over against him a good way off, as it were a bowshot: 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. Gen 21:17  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. Gen 21:18  Arise, lift up the lad, and hold him in thine hand; for I will make him a great nation. Gen 21:19  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. Gen 21:20  And God was with the lad; and he grew, and dwelt in the wilderness, and became an archer. Gen 21:21  And he dwelt in the wilderness of Paran: and his mother took him a wife out of the land of Egypt.

We now can see that the children of God are called through the promise of God. However, God can be merciful to whom He will be merciful, as God is not a respecter of persons (see Act 10:34). This portion of Scripture from the New Testament to the ekklesia at Galatia where the apostle Paul sums it all up perfectly what was passed down through the generations, confirms all that preceded in Genesis, as it is written ~

Gal 4:22  For it is written, that Abraham had two sons, the one by a bondmaid, the other by a freewoman. Gal 4:23  But he who was of the bondwoman was born after the flesh; but he of the freewoman was by promise. Gal 4:24  Which things are an allegory: for these are the two covenants; the one from the mount Sinai, which gendereth to bondage, which is Agar. Gal 4:25  For this Agar is mount Sinai in Arabia, and answereth to Jerusalem which now is, and is in bondage with her children.
Gal 4:26  But Jerusalem which is above is free, which is the mother of us all. Gal 4:27  For it is written, Rejoice, thou barren that bearest not; break forth and cry, thou that travailest not: for the desolate hath many more children than she which hath an husband. Gal 4:28  Now we, brethren, as Isaac was, are the children of promise. Gal 4:29  But as then he that was born after the flesh persecuted him that was born after the Spirit, even so it is now. Gal 4:30  Nevertheless what saith the scripture? Cast out the bondwoman and her son: for the son of the bondwoman shall not be heir with the son of the freewoman. Gal 4:31  So then, brethren, we are not children of the bondwoman, but of the free.

You see, one’s only hope of being free, and to be free indeed, is as our Lord Jesus Christ said: If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed (John 8:36). You need to be an heir of the Seed of the freewoman and that is to be born-again of the Spirit of God, to believe upon the Lord Jesus Christ. Satan the Devil hates our Saviour the Lord Jesus Christ and the children of God, the called and elected. In conclusion – you need to be a Christian – a Christ follower. That is your only hope! Salvation is by grace alone through faith alone and in Christ alone! We do pray for God to soften and open Muslim hearts that they too will come out of bondage, being the offspring of the bondmaid, and be found free as reconciled children of God through the seed of the freewoman. For salvation is of God alone to all that believeth.

SOLI DEO GLORIA

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