Welcome to our Hagar Bible study lesson. Hagar’s journey is a powerful testament to faith in adversity, God’s providence, and the value of every individual in His eyes.
As an Egyptian servant in the household of Abraham and Sarah, her story unfolds amidst complex challenges and divine encounters.
In this study, we’ll explore how Hagar’s experiences of hardship and triumph reveal God’s character and His commitment to care for the marginalized.
Her story is a profound lesson in resilience and faith, demonstrating God’s presence in our struggles.
As we delve into the chapters of Genesis, we’ll seek to understand how Hagar’s story can inspire and guide us in our own walks with God.
Join us on this journey to uncover the timeless lessons from Hagar’s life and apply them to our lives today. Let’s embark on this exploration with open hearts, ready to learn and be transformed.
The Story of Hagar in the Bible Summary
Hagar’s story, primarily found in the Book of Genesis chapters 16 and 21, presents a compelling one of struggle, divine intervention, and survival.
Hagar is an Egyptian servant of Sarah, Abraham’s wife. Her story unfolds in the context of Abraham and Sarah’s journey of faith and their long wait for a promised child.
Initially, Sarah, unable to conceive, gives Hagar to Abraham to bear a child on her behalf, a common practice in ancient times.
Hagar becomes pregnant, and her changing relationship with Sarah leads to conflict. Feeling mistreated by Sarah, Hagar flees into the wilderness.
It is in the wilderness that Hagar has a profound encounter with God. An angel of the Lord finds her, offers comfort, and instructs her to return to Sarah, promising that her descendants through her son, Ishmael, will be too numerous to count.
This encounter is significant as Hagar is one of the few people in the Bible to have a direct conversation with God, and she even gives a name to the Lord – “El Roi,” meaning “the God who sees me.”
Later, after the birth of Isaac, Sarah’s son with Abraham, tensions resurface, leading to Hagar and Ishmael’s expulsion from Abraham’s household.
Once again in the wilderness and facing death, Hagar is comforted by God, who provides for her and Ishmael and reiterates the promise of Ishmael becoming a great nation.
Bible Study Questions About Hagar
To study the story of Hagar in depth, you’ll want to focus on specific passages in the Book of Genesis where her story is detailed. Here are the key verses:
- Genesis 16:1-16: This passage introduces Hagar as Sarai’s Egyptian servant. It details Sarai’s decision to give Hagar to Abram as a surrogate, Hagar’s pregnancy, her mistreatment by Sarai, and her initial flight into the wilderness. This section also includes Hagar’s first encounter with the Angel of the Lord and the birth of Ishmael.
- Genesis 21:8-21: This section covers the events leading to Hagar’s second departure from Abraham’s household. It includes the weaning feast of Isaac, Sarah’s demand to expel Hagar and Ishmael, Abraham’s distress and God’s reassurance to him, and Hagar’s subsequent journey into the wilderness. The passage also details God’s intervention to save Hagar and Ishmael when they are in desperate need of water, and the reaffirmation of God’s promise regarding Ishmael’s future.
Here are some insightful study questions to help you better understand the story of Hagar and her journey of faith.
- What are the circumstances that lead to Hagar becoming pregnant with Abraham’s child? How do the cultural norms of the time influence this situation?
- How does the relationship between Sarah and Hagar change after Hagar becomes pregnant, and what does this reveal about their characters?
- Discuss Hagar’s first encounter with the angel of the Lord in the wilderness (Genesis 16:7-12). What is the significance of this encounter?
- What does the name Ishmael mean, and why does the angel of the Lord choose this name for Hagar’s son?
- Examine the promises made by God to Hagar regarding her son. How do these promises align with or differ from the promises made to Abraham about his descendants?
- How does Hagar’s response to the angel’s message (naming the place and acknowledging God) reflect her faith and understanding of God?
- In Genesis 21, what leads to Hagar and Ishmael being sent away from Abraham’s household?
- Discuss Hagar’s experience in the wilderness the second time (Genesis 21:15-21). How does God provide for her and Ishmael?
- How does Hagar’s story contribute to the larger narrative of Abraham’s family and the unfolding of God’s plan in Genesis?
- What are the implications of Hagar’s story in the context of God’s care for the marginalized and outcast in society?
Reflection Questions for Hagar in the Bible Study
Let’s now dive into some reflection questions to help you better apply lessons from her life to your own:
- Reflect on a time when you felt outcast or marginalized, like Hagar. How did you experience God’s presence or guidance during that time?
- Considering Hagar’s resilience in the face of hardship, how can her story inspire you in dealing with your own struggles and challenges?
- Hagar names God “El-Roi,” meaning “the God who sees me.” How does this aspect of God’s character speak to you in your current life situation?
- In what ways can Hagar’s experiences of divine intervention and provision encourage you to trust in God’s care, especially in difficult times?
- How does Hagar’s story challenge your understanding of God’s inclusivity and concern for all people, regardless of their status or background?
Download (free) the list of Bible passages and the study/reflection questions so you can keep them handy during your Bible Study time.
If you’d like to take a deeper dive into her story, be sure to checkout my full Hagar Bible Study Journal and Workbook!
Continue studying the amazing women of the Bible with this Sarah Bible Study Lesson.