Sarah in the Bible
Without question Sarah holds a special place in redemptive history and is remembered as one of the great women in the Bible. Chosen by God to become a mother of nations -kings would be her descendants and ultimately the Messiah would come from her family tree.
Then God said to Abraham,… “And I will bless her and also give you a son by her; then I will bless her, and she shall be a mother of nations; kings of peoples shall be from her. Genesis 17:15-16
As a mother, I know of nothing more reassuring than the Lord, Himself promising that my descendants will be mighty in the earth. Mighty in number and mighty in influence! But what makes her story all the more incredible is Sarah was barren.
How old was Sarah in the Bible?
Sarah was 10-years younger than Abraham-
And not being weak in faith, he did not consider his own body, already dead (since he was about a hundred years old), and the deadness of Sarah’s womb. Romans 4:19
According to the scriptures, Sarah was 91 years old when she gave birth to Isaac. This was approximately 25 years after the original promise was given to Abram that he would become a great nation (Genesis 12:2). Why did it take so long for Abram and Sarai to receive the fruit of the promise God had given? Though the answer has somewhat to do with God’s timing it also hinged on the effectiveness of their faith.
Sarah's faith in the Bible
Sarah (formerly Sarai) became a woman of great faith, although clearly she didn’t start out that way- it was a process.
By faith Sarah herself also received strength to conceive seed, and she bore a child when she was past the age, because she judged Him faithful who had promised. Hebrews 11:11
Abram and Sarai were idol worshippers living in Ur of the Chaldeans when God called them to go to a land, He would show them. Like us, they needed to learn how to trust God. This happens through experience. Experiences usually involving trial and error. As you follow Sarah’s journey with her husband Abraham you quickly see their human frailties and inconsistencies come to the surface. But through God’s great grace and His loyal love, they learned to trust Him more and more with each step they took.
Why was Sarai's name changed to Sarah?
This is probably one of my favorite parts of Sarah’s story. Sarai’s name was changed to Sarah by God to reflect her destiny. The name Sarai (her birth name) meant “my princess” but it was changed to Sarah which meant “Princess of a clan.”
“As for Sarai your wife, you shall not call her name Sarai, but Sarah shall be her name. “ Genesis 17:15
Once Sarah’s name was changed, she became pregnant with Isaac shortly thereafter indicating a new dynamic had been realized in her faith.
Sarah's laughter in the Bible
There are two occasions in the scripture where we are told Sarah laughed. The first occasion is often seen as a laughter of disbelief in the promise of God. However, in reality her laughter is not merely at the improbability of a child but more so at the thought of once again experiencing "pleasure" with her husband.
(Sarah) saying, “After I have grown old, shall I have pleasure, my lord being old also?’” Genesis 18:12
The LORD’s response to her was one of grace and hope, assuring her that whatever challenges stood in the way God was more than able to remedy.
“Is anything too hard for the Lord? At the appointed time I will return to you, according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son.” Genesis 18:14
The second occasion of laughter was at the birth of Isaac (which means laughter). Cleary this was an occasion of great joy in response to God’s faithfulness!
And Sarah said, “God has made me laugh, and all who hear will laugh with me.” Genesis 21:6
Sarah in the Bible - Summary
Sarah was a barren woman who was called and chosen by God to become a matriarch in the faith. She is remembered as a woman who believed God and as a result she gave birth to a miracle child! God has a standing invitation extended to each of us – to believe Him so that we too can exchange the impossibilities of life for His miracle working power!
There is great treasure to be gained by studying the life of both Abraham and Sarah in fact we are told to do so in the scriptures-
Look to Abraham your father,
And to Sarah who bore you;
For I called him alone,
And blessed him and increased him.” Isaiah 51:2
Sarah in the Bible - Study (5-Week Bible Study)