Paul’s Account Of Abraham

Q. Thanks so much for your ministry and the time and energy you devote to it. I have a question about the faith of Abraham.

Romans 4:10-20 says that Abraham did not waver in his faith, in regards to the Promise. I believe that this is true. Clearly, he believed in the promise of a son in order to continue to do the things that are necessary for a couple to have children. Doing this even unto very old age.

What I’m trying to understand better is why Abraham took Hagar when she was offered.

I’m just trying to reconcile how saying his faith in a promised son didn’t waiver with his decision to be with Hagar for the specific reason of producing a son. Is it that GOD doesn’t expect our faith to be perfect to be acceptable? What was GOD looking at when He said Abraham’s faith did not waiver? I think understanding this better would help me understand the state of my own faith better.

A. I think Paul’s account in Romans 4 is an example of God’s grace. Abraham’s intent was always to believe God. Even in accepting Sarah’s offer of using Hagar, his motives were right. I believe he saw Sarah’s plan as a way to make the promise come true. It was also a legal means of producing an heir under the Code of Hammurabi. Therefore, God had Paul edit Abraham’s “impatience” out of the account. He forgives our sins and remembers our iniquities no more.

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