Evangelical Lutheran Diocese of North America

Thursday after the Second Sunday after the Epiphany of our Lord

Posted on January 24, 2019 by Pastor Dulas under Devotions
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Scripture: Genesis 21:1-8 (NKJV)
21:1 And the LORD visited Sarah as He had said, and the LORD did for Sarah as He had spoken. 2 For Sarah conceived and bore Abraham a son in his old age, at the set time of which God had spoken to him. 3 And Abraham called the name of his son who was born to him—whom Sarah bore to him—Isaac. 4 Then Abraham circumcised his son Isaac when he was eight days old, as God had commanded him. 5 Now Abraham was one hundred years old when his son Isaac was born to him.
6 And Sarah said, “God has made me laugh, and all who hear will laugh with me.” 7 She also said, “Who would have said to Abraham that Sarah would nurse children? For I have borne him a son in his old age.”
8 So the child grew and was weaned. And Abraham made a great feast on the same day that Isaac was weaned.
With the promised birth of Sarah’s son, everyone is laughing with Sarah. Abraham laughed in believing joy when God told him that He would have a son in his old age. Initially Sarah laughed in disbelief when God told her that she would conceive and bear a son. Now she laughs with Abraham in believing joy. Her disbelieving laughing was her own fault, but her believing laughing she credits to God. “God has made me laugh…”
When we sin and deny the Word, then we wholly are to blame for our unbelief. When God gives to us the gift of faith, He gets all the credit for our faith in Christ and the salvation it brings. Sarah says, “…and all who hear will laugh with me.” She knows that faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God. The power of the Word comes from the Word giver. In thanksgiving for these great promises, Abraham holds a great feast for the gift of Isaac. Abraham knows the “Who” of Sarah’s rhetorical question, “Who would have said to Abraham that Sarah would nurse children?”
Due to our sin, we have brought the effects of sin upon ourselves. But due to His graciousness, we have been lifted out of the depths. The psalmist says, “You turned my wailing into dancing; I will give You thanks forever (Ps. 30:11). Those who know the One who always keeps His promises believingly laugh with joy at the gracious God who keeps His promises to Abraham, and to us.
We pray: O Lord, You have made great and precious promises of life to us. Create and maintain faith in us so that we give thanks for Your salvation in the Virgin’s Son and Your Son, Jesus Christ. Amen.
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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