90 Years of Believing
Abraham and Sarah were 100 and 90 years old respectively when they had Isaac. 100 and 90 years old!
That’s a lot of waiting!
When Abraham was at least 75 and Sarah 65 years old, Abraham asked the Lord how those promises would be fulfilled.
“Lord God, what wilt thou give me, seeing I go childless?”
“How wilt thou give me this land for an everlasting inheritance?”Genesis 15:2 and 15:9 (JST)
How will God fulfill
The Lord reminded Abraham of his power
He testified that He could fulfill His promises even if Abraham died! And reminded Abraham of the miracle that would be in Christ.
“And it came to pass, that Abram looked forth and saw the days of the Son of Man, and was glad, and his soul found rest, and he believed in the Lord; and the Lord counted it unto him for righteousness.”Genesis 15:12 (JST)
That’s the key. Abraham didn’t just wait for the Lord’s promises to be fulfilled. He believed they would be!
I recently read Sarah by Orson Scott Card. He took some artistic liberty in describing Abraham’s belief from Sarah’s perspective…
“To him, it was as if what the Lord had promised were already fulfilled; he thought of himself as a man with many children.”Sarah, p. 66
What a beautiful description of faith!
What about Sarah?
Sarah also believed
We don’t get much insight into Sarah’s thoughts and feelings in the Old Testament, but we know that she believed enough in God’s promises that she was willing to let them be fulfilled through another woman.
“And Sarai said unto Abram, Behold now, the Lord hath restrained me from bearing: I pray thee, go in unto my maid; it may be that I may obtain children by her. And Abram hearkened to the voice of Sarai.”Genesis 16:2
It took a lot of faith in the Lord and in Abraham’s love to not only allow him but to invite him to have a child through her maidservant.
The blessing came after believing
Even after all of this the Lord reminded Abraham and Sarah of His promise to them, and invited them again to believe.
“And I will bless [Sarah], and give thee a son also of her: yea, I will bless her, and she shall be a mother of nations; kings of people shall be of her.”Genesis 17:16
This was not an easy thing to believe, because Sarah had already sacrificed so much and resigned herself to the Lord’s promises being fulfilled through another. And because…
“Now Abraham and Sarah were old and well stricken in age; and it ceased to be with Sarah after the manner of women.”Genesis 18:11
Ye receive no witness
until after the
trial of your faith
I don’t know why Abraham and Sarah had to believe through so much before they were blessed with a child.
For Sarah conceived, and bare Abraham a son in his old age, at the set time of which God had spoken to him.
And Abraham was an hundred years old, when his son Isaac was born unto him.
And Sarah said, God hath made me to laugh, so that all that hear will laugh with me.
And she said, Who would have said unto Abraham, that Sarah should have given children suck? for I have born him a son in his old age.Genesis 21:2,5-7
Why isn’t the post called “100 Years of Believing”?
Because I want to highlight Sarah in this post. She had to endure decades of bareness, watch her handmaid bear a child to her husband, and then give birth in (extremely) old age (imagine any 90-year-old woman you know having a child!), but even though she wasn’t able to hear her own baby laugh until she was 90 years old, she still laughed with him :)
A blessing worth
I love Sarah’s example of faith. She showed what Moroni also showed the world in the Book of Mormon.
“I would show unto the world that faith is things which are hoped for and not seen; wherefore, dispute not because ye see not, for ye receive no witness until after the trial of your faith.”Ether 12:6
My recent HWN has been in pondering the example of Sarah.