Walk Thru The Word for Today:  Genesis 26: 1 – 6 (ESV) (Sarah Died A Sojourner)

Gen. 23: 1-6 1Sarah lived 127 years; these were the years of the life of Sarah.1Sarah lived 127 years; these were the years of the life of Sarah. 2And Sarah died at Kiriath-arba (that is, Hebron) in the land of Canaan, and Abraham went in to mourn for Sarah and to weep for her. 3And Abraham rose up from before his dead and said to the Hittites,a 4“I am a sojourner and foreigner among you; give me property among you for a burying place, that I may bury my dead out of my sight.” 5The Hittites answered Abraham, 6“Hear us, my lord; you are a prince of Godb among us. Bury your dead in the choicest of our tombs. None of us will withhold from you his tomb to hinder you from burying your dead.”

Walk Thru The Word for Today:  Genesis 23: 7 – 11 (ESV) (Ephron the Hittite Offers Abraham Sarah’s Burial Site)

Gen. 23: 7-11 7Abraham rose and bowed to the Hittites, the people of the land. 8And he said to them, “If you are willing that I should bury my dead out of my sight, hear me and entreat for me Ephron the son of Zohar, 9that he may give me the cave of Machpelah, which he owns; it is at the end of his field. For the full price let him give it to me in your presence as property for a burying place.”

10Now Ephron was sitting among the Hittites, and Ephron the Hittite answered Abraham in the hearing of the Hittites, of all who went in at the gate of his city, 11“No, my lord, hear me: I give you the field, and I give you the cave that is in it. In the sight of the sons of my people I give it to you. Bury your dead.”

Walk Thru The Word for Today:  Genesis 23: 12 – 16 (ESV) (400 Shekels of Silver Secures Sarah’s Burial Site)

Genesis 23: 12 – 16:12Then Abraham bowed down before the people of the land. 13And he said to Ephron in the hearing of the people of the land, “But if you will, hear me: I give the price of the field. Accept it from me, that I may bury my dead there.”

14Ephron answered Abraham, 15“My lord, listen to me: a piece of land worth four hundred shekels of silver, what is that between you and me? Bury your dead.” 16Abraham listened to Ephron, and Abraham weighed out for Ephron the silver that he had named in the hearing of the Hittites, four hundred shekels of silver, according to the weights current among the merchants.

Walk Thru The Word for Today: Gen 23: 17 20 (The most revered Machpelah east of Mamre)

Genesis 23: 17 – 20 (ESV) 17So the field of Ephron in Machpelah, which was to the east of Mamre, the field with the cave that was in it and all the trees that were in the field, throughout its whole area, was made over 18to Abraham as a possession in the presence of the Hittites, before all who went in at the gate of his city. 19After this, Abraham buried Sarah his wife in the cave of the field of Machpelah east of Mamre (that is, Hebron) in the land of Canaan. 20The field and the cave that is in it were made over to Abraham as property for a burying place by the Hittites.

Message map:  Genesis 23: 1-20 

Sarah Symbolizes The Barren Bride of Christ”

  • Sarah’s Compelling Characteristics
  • Sarah is Aged To Exception, Beautiful But Barren
  • Sarah Is The 1st Buried At Machpelah the 2nd Most Revered Place on Earth
  • Sarah Is Sent On a Sojourn She Can’t Fulfill
  • Sarah Embarks Despite Her Bareness
  • Sarah traveled in Trust
  • Sarah is venerated for placing herself in a position of vulnerability
  • Sarah Stands Her Ground with Headstrong Hagar
  • Sarah Schemes A Plan B for Hagar to raise up the promised child Isaac
  • God gives Sarah the last laugh
  • God Supports Sarah & Protects Her from Pharaoh & Abimelech Two Of The Most Powerful People
  • Sarah is Sent Into Sin as Abraham’s Sister
  • Sarah submits to Abraham’s Fear & god steps in (Be Still & Know I am God)

Sarah’s Documented Death:

Gen 23: 1-2 “Sarah lived 127 years.”

Bible Trivia:

Sarah joins these notable women in Scripture whose deaths also are recorded in the Bible

  1. Miriam, Moses’ sister
  2. Deborah The Judge
  3. Hannah, the Mother of Samuel
  4. Queen Esther
  5. Elizabeth, the Mother of John The Baptist
  6. Mary, who birthed Christ

Ans. NONE of the Above

Sarah’s death is significant because she is the only woman in all of Scripture whose age and the details of her death are documented.

Sarah’s burial plot is the first land the patriarchs possess in Canaan, the land God promised them.

Sarah’s death is the occasion for Abraham to obtain the first claim to property in the land God promised them.

Sara is the first of the patriarchs to be buried and permanently reside in their God-given homeland.

Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Sarah, Rebecca, and Leah are all buried in The Cave of Machpelah, considered the world’s most ancient Jewish site and the second holiest place for the Jewish people, after Temple Mount in Jerusalem. The cave and the adjoining field were purchased—at full market price—by Abraham some 3700 years ago. Rachel is he only patriarch missing, as she was buried near Bethlehem where she died in childbirth.

BTW Smith’s Bible Dictionary says, “The shekel weight of silver was the unit of value through the whole age of Hebrew history, down to the Babylonian captivity.”

(http://www.landoverbaptist.net/showthread.php?t=94181) A shekel is a unit of weight equal to about 11 grams, so 50 shekels is about 550 grams or 19.4 ounces. The spot price of silver in Nov 2013has been dropping for the last year or so, but as of yesterday it was around $21.70 per ounce. That would place 50 shekels as being worth about $420.98.  So 400 shekels would be $420.98.  x 8 =’s $3,367.84

Others estimate the value of 400 shekels at the equivalent of between $18,000 — $128,000 of today’s dollars.

According to the Jewish Virtual Library, The double cave, of Machpelah, was uncovered several years ago beneath the massive building in the picture.  It contained artifacts from the Early Israelite Period (some 30 centuries ago).

The structure covering it was built during the Second Temple Period (about two thousand years ago) by Herod, King of Judea, providing a place for gatherings and Jewish prayers at the graves of the Patriarchs.

This uniquely impressive building is the only one that stands intact and still fulfills its original function after thousands of years. Foreign conquerors and invaders changed the use of the site per their varying religious purposes.  The Byzantines and Crusaders transformed it into a church and the Muslims rendered it a mosque. About 700 years ago, the Muslim Mamelukes conquered Hebron, declared the structure a mosque and forbade entry to Jews, who were not allowed past the seventh step on a staircase outside the building.

Upon the liberation of Hebron in 1967, the Chief Rabbi of the Israel Defense Forces, the late Major-General Rabbi Shlomo Goren, was the first Jew to enter the Cave of Machpelah. Since then, Jews have been struggling to regain their prayer rights at the site, still run by the Muslim Waqf (Religious Trust) that took control during the Arab conquest. Many restrictions are imposed on Jewish prayers and customs at the Tomb of the Patriarchs despite the site’s significance, primacy and sanctity in Jewish heritage and history.

Over 300,000 people visit Ma’arat HaMachpelah annually. The structure is divided into three rooms: Jews only are allowed to access the largest room just 10 days a year.

Sarah’s Eulogy & Compelling Characteristics

Gen. 11:30 we are introduced to Sarah who is notable for which compelling characteristic feature:

  1. her age
  2. her beauty
  3. her barrenness
  4. she is Abram’s/Abraham’s wife

While all the above is true, the feature that requires her to exercise the most faith in her life is bareness Gen.11:30

In Gen 12: 1-3 Sarah was sent on a journey she could not fulfill (Gen 18:10)  Ecclesiastes 3: 1There is a Season/time for everything, and a Time/Season for every activity under the heavens: Click To Tweet

Sarah embarked despite her bareness (NW-1828 = sterile; not fertile; or producing little; unproductive)

  • God calls us to ministries we can’t fulfill apart from the Holy Spirit working through  us to do His will and accomplish His purposes  In my flesh dwells no good thing
  • John 15: 5 I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.
  • Sarah is venerated for willingly placing herself in a position of vulnerability to follow God. (1 Cor 2:31, Paul says, “I came to you in weakness with great fear and trembling.”)
  • Sarah traveled in trust

Sarah Survived Her Mid-Sojourn Crisis of having Hagar Bear A Child for her & Abraham

In Gen 22:12 Sarah is right/wrong as God said to Abraham, “Be not displeased because of the boy and because of your slave woman. Whatever Sarah says to you, do as she tells you, for through Isaac shall your offspring be named.

In Gen 16: 2-3, Sarah is right/wrong when she … 2And Sarai said to Abram, “… the LORD has prevented me from bearing children.”

(Might not be the Lord, might be her natural state to be barren.)

Sarah is right/wrong when she tells Abraham “Go in to my servant; it may be that I shall obtain children by her.” And … 3So, after Abram had lived ten years in the land of Canaan, Sarai, Abram’s wife, took Hagar the Egyptian, her servant, and gave her to Abram her husband as a wife.

God supports Sarah to get back on track with His plan, by supporting her stand against headstrong Hagar.

The church often has to resist, stand up against those who violate God’s Word and plan.

Even though Hagar’s predicament was Sarah’s fault, people on both sides of an error must stop, drop and roll back to God.  We can’t sentimentally get stalled in error

Matt 10:16 “Behold, I am sending you out as sheep in the midst of wolves, so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves.

God continually supported Sarah by … 

The Patriarchs provide role models

Hebrews 11:13-16 All these … died in faith, without receiving the promises, but having seen them and having welcomed them from a distance, and having confessed that they were strangers and exiles on the earth. For those who say such things make it clear that they are seeking a country of their own. And indeed if they had been thinking of that country from which they went out, they would have had opportunity to return. But as it is, they desire a better country that is a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God; for He has prepared a city for them.

Hebrews 11:13-16 tell us Our Patriarchal role models set the example for us by having …

  1. Died in faith, without receiving the promises, but having seen them and having welcomed them from a distance, and having confessed that they were strangers and exiles on the earth.
  2. welcomed God’s promises from a distance (as we must)
  3. confessed they were strangers and exiles on the earth.(2 Cor. 9:13)
  4. Clearly were seeking a country citizenship of their own, per God’s calling.
  5. And refused to return to their former country estate.

Ecclesiastes 3: 1There is a Season/time  for everything, and a Time/Season for every activity under the heavens:

“A delay is not a denial”

God curbs answers to develop character

We Model S-A-R-A-H/I by …

S = SAVOR what God SAYS and don’t forget.     Keep track of you’re learning and progress.

A = ASK for confirmation, rather than take matters into our own hands and operate in my will for God.

R = Restrain ourselves from sin and rebound/return quickly from failure.

A = advance despite our age. By being obedient to what we’ve known and have been shown.

H/I = HARKEN/invest to God’s voice & commands by continually investing in seeking, studying, fellowshipping

Loving God Most Means Following In The Footsteps of the Patriarchs and Sojourn, Trusting God Will Work Through Our Barren To Fulfill His Plan.  LET’S PRAY!  

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