Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered outside the gate. Therefore, let us go forth to him outside the camp, bearing his reproach. For we have no continuing city here, but we seek one to come.
Select a thought to read by choosing a collection, the month, and then the day:
“For it is written that Abraham had two sons, the one by a slave girl, the other by a free woman.”
Everyone in God’s family has the same Father; that is, God. But there are two mothers in God’s family, and the mother you choose will determine your eternal destiny.
Paul called one mother “Hagar”, and the other he called “Sarah”. Whom have you chosen to be your mother? With his parable concerning the two mothers of God’s children, Paul was referring to the patriarch Abraham’s household. Abraham had a son by Hagar, an Egyptian slave girl, and he later had another son, Isaac, by his aged wife Sarah. So, those two boys had the same father, but not the same mother, and the differing influences of the mothers played a critical role in shaping the two boys’ spirits.
Hagar, Paul taught, represents the flesh; Sarah represents the Spirit. Hagar, the flesh, will cause a child of God to feel misunderstood and mistreated when God’s discipline comes. But Sarah, the Spirit, will encourage chastened children of God to endure with patience and humility the stern hand of the Father. She understands that the Father is always right and that His correction comes only for the children’s benefit.
Hagar is attracted to religious ceremonies performed in the flesh, and in the celebration of “holy days”, and other such vain religious rites. Sarah and her children care for none of those things, choosing rather to worship God in spirit and in truth than in the vain traditions of men.
Hagar specializes in appearance; Sarah, in substance. And yet, the difference between the children of Hagar and the children of Sarah most often shows up when the Father’s correction or chastisement comes. Hagar’s sons, in time, become self-willed and proud, and they will not be corrected. Sarah’s sons, in time, learn to be humble, and, so, they can be guided into all truth by the Spirit. Hagar’s sons see authority as a threat to their “liberty”; Sarah’s sons see authority as a shadow under which they may peacefully rest.