Genesis 21 Commentary

Please choose a passage:

Genesis 21:1-4

God kept His promise; Abraham and Sarah conceive and have a son at the appointed time. Abraham names the boy Isaac and circumcises him at eight days old in obedience to God.

Genesis 21:5-8

Abraham was 100 years old when Isaac was born. Sarah was very happy at Isaac’s birth. Isaac grew, and a feast was given when he was weaned.

Genesis 21:9-13

Sarah wants Abraham’s son, Ishmael, sent away from their house. She wants her own son, Isaac, to be the sole heir of Abraham.

Genesis 21:14-17

Abraham sends Hagar and Ishmael away. They wander in the wilderness and run out of water. Hagar thinks they will die, but God hears Ishmael’s cries and rescues them.

Genesis 21:18-21

God assures Hagar that Ishmael will live and make a great nation. Miraculously, God leads them to a well to drink. Ishmael grows up, becomes an archer, and marries an Egyptian woman.

Genesis 21:22-24

King Abimelech knows that God favors Abraham, so he makes a covenant with him, asking for fair and honest dealing. Abraham agrees.

Genesis 21:25-30

Abraham complains that Abimelech’s men have taken over his well. Abimelech claims he had not heard of this well until today. Abraham sets apart seven lambs for Abimelech to give the well rights back to him.

Genesis 21:31-34

Abraham names the place where he made an oath with Abimelech, “Beersheba.” After the covenant is made, Abraham plants a tree at Beersheba and prays to God.