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14 Wherefore the well was / son's name, which Hagar bare, called y Beer-lahai-roi ; behold, it • Ishmael. is z between Kadesh and Bered. 16 And Abram was fourscore

15 | And - Hagar bare Abram and six years old, when Hagar son; and Abram called his bare Ishmael to Abram.

a

y ch. 24. 62. & 25. 11. 2 Numb. 13. 26. a Gal. 1. 22.

b ver. 11.

lowing variety of versions. Gr. ' For I well of the living one, my seer. Chal. have openly seen him that appeared the well of the angel of life, who apunto me.' Chal. 'Lo, I begin to see peared there. According to this renafter that he appeared unto me.' Syr. dering of Onkelos, the active sense of 'Lo, I have beheld a vision, after he be- life-giving or quickening, in allusion to held nie.' Arab. Erp. ‘Even here I have her wondrous preservation, is involved seen, after his seeing me.' Arab. Saad. in the epithet 77 living here employed, "Truly I have here seen thy compas- and this perhaps is not far from the sion, after I had seen affliction.' Targ. truth. Jon.Behold, here is revealed the glory 15. Abram called his son's name of the divine majesty after the vision.' Ishmael. Having previously heard In several of them it will be observed from Hagar the various particulars of that the leading idea is that of devout the divine apparition above recited. He wonder on the part of Hagar, that she named his son “according to the prophhad been permitted to live to see any ecy that went before upon him.' thing else, after being favoured with

16. Abram was fourscore and six such a glorious vision; and this is

years

old. Heb. "Son of eighty-six strikingly in accordance with the gen- years;' according to the usual idiom of eral belief prevalent in those early the original. For this long period had days, that such a view would be fol. Abraham lived childless, and yet as a lowed by the immediate extinction of trial to his faith, he is required to wait life. Ste Ex. 24. 11. Judg. 13. 32. But fourteen years longer before the sight whether this were the real sense of the of the child of promise gladdens his words we are not prepared to decide. aged eyes. During thirteen years of

14. The well was called. Heb. 47p that period it would seem that all those he called, i. e. one called, every one delightful personal manifestations of called ; this became its general appel- the Almighty which he had hitherto lation. This impersonal kind of phrase enjoyed were suspended: but whether in which the active is used for the pas- this was designed, as some have sugsive voice, is very common both in the gested, as a token of the divine disHeb. of the Old Testament and the pleasure for so easily acquiescing in the Gr. of the New. Thus, Ex. 10. 21, sinful expedient proposed by Sarah, or ‘Even darkness which may be felt.' whether it is simply to be referred to Heb. 'which one may feel.' Ps. 9. 6, the sovertign good pleasure of him 'And his name shall be called.' Heb. who giveth not account of any of his 'one shall call his name.' Luke 12. matters, it is not for us to say. It is 20. Thou fool, this night shall thy soul certain however as a general fact that be required of thee.' Gr. 'they shall similar conduct is productive of simrequire.' 1 Cor. 15. 27, ‘But when he ilar results, and that if we find that it saith, all things are put under him;' is not with us as in times past, that i. e. when it is said, &c. -1 Beer- communion with God is more than Lahai-roi. Heb. *777) 787 the I usually difficult, that our intercouran

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CHAPTER XVII. unto him, I am the Almighty AND when Abram was ninety God; walk before me, and be

years old and nine, the LORD thou d perfect. appeared to Abram, and said b ch. 28. 3. & 35. 11. Ex. 6. 3. Deut 10. 17.

c ch. 5. 22. & 48. 15. 1 Kings. 2. 4. & B. 25. a ch, 12. 1.

2 Kings 20. 3. d ch. 6. 9. Deut. 18. 13. Job. 1.

1. Mat. 5. 48. with heaven is sadly impeded, our ty-nine years,' i. e. going on in his prayers hindered and our praises dead- ninety-ninth year. This was thirteen ened, the cause is to be sought in our years after the birth of Ishmael. From selves. It is not a mere sovereign the effect produced on Abrahain's mind withdrawal of the light of God's coun- by the annunciation, v. 15–17, that tenance, but a merited rebuke of some he should yet have a son by Sarah, secret offence, some unrestrained tem- il is probable that he had long settled per, some unholy compliance, some down in the belief that Ishmael was unchecked and unchastened desire, the destined seed, and consequenily which is suffered to remain undetected had renounced all hopes of farther in the heart and to rob us of the proni

issue. - I am the Almighty God. ised blessing.– A single additional re- Heb. 70 %# El Shaddai, God allmark may close our exposition of the sufficient; able to accomplish with inpresent chapter. We are here impres- finite ease all his purposes, whether of sively taught that we are not to judge judgment or of mercy. This was a of the greatness and inportance of truth which he needed to bave re-imthe designs of providence, by any pressed upon his mind. It was for worldly marks of distinction. The want of considering this, that he had posterity of Ishmael, though later pre

had recourse to crooked devices in dicted, was earlier brought forward, and order to accomplish the promise. In has been much longer established, and view therefore of the physical inspoexisted in a far higher degree of nation- tency of Abrahani's body and of Sarah's al dignity and consequence, than the womb, the Most High is pleased to anposterity of Isaac. Yet it was not in nounce himself under this august title, the line of Ishmael, but in that of which evidently carried with it the imIsaac that the promises of life and sal- plication that no obstacles whatever vation were to run. To Isaac, and not could stand in the way of the comto his elder brother, pertained the plete fulfilment of the word of promise. adoption, and the glory, and the cov- - Walk before me. Heb. 73761 enants, and the giving of the law, and set thyself to walk; a peculiarly emthe service of God, and the promises,' phatic mode of expression. See Note and of him as concerning the flesh, on Gen. 13. 17.- - Be thou perfect. Christ came, who is over all God bless. Heb. Dan perfect, i. e. upright, sined for ever.' The things which are Gr. Walk p easingly be: ore me highly esteemed among men, are often and be blameless. Chal. 'Serve before of no price in the sight of Him who me and be perfect.' See noles on hath chosen the foolish, the weak, and Gen. 5. 25. & 6. 9. Integrity is true the base things of the world to con- scriptural perfection; and without that found the wise, the mighty, and the everything in our religion is defectmagnificent

ive, and all profession vain. We may

not indeed attain to absolute perfecCHAPTER XVII.

tion on earth, but we should study 1. When. Abram was ninety years as nearly as possible to approach it, old and nine. Heb, 'the son of nine- I which is only 1o be done by 'walking

cere.

e ch. 12. 2. & 13. 16. & 22. 17. f ver. 17.

2 And I will make my cov-face: and God talked with him, enant between me and thee, and saying, e will multiply thee exceedingly: 4 As for me, behold, my cov3 And Abram f fell on his erant is with thee, and thou shalt

be 6 a father of many nations.

g Rom. 4. 11, 12, 16. with God,' by a steady course of prayer posture assumed by Abraham on this and communion with him. Difficul- occasion probably resembles one of the ties, to try our faith, may daily occur, several postures used by the Mohamand irksome and unpleasant duties will medans in their worship. It consists in frequently present themselves, but we placing the body on the hands and must walk on, pursue the even tenor knees-or on all fours, as we should of our way, and not turn aside to avoid say—while the head is bent down, the the one or evade the other. It is prob- forehead touching the ground. This able that the admonition in this case is posture is highly expressive of the to be considered as involving a virtual deepest humility and the most profound reproof. It was as if he had said, adoration. It also resembles the kotou 'Have recourse to no more unbelieving usually performed before the emperor expedients; keep thou the path of up- of China; and which is so well known rightness, and leave me to fulfil my to us in consequence of the refusal of promise in the time and manner that Lords Macartney and Amherst to subseem good to me.' What a lesson is mit to it.' Pict. Bible. here afforded us against a resort to un- 4. Thou shalt be a father of many lawful or doubtful means under the pre- nations. Heb. 0770 7927283 for or tence of their being better calculated to a father of a multitude of nations. to promote the cause of God! Our This promise was fulfilled both in a litconcern is simply to walk before him eral and a spiritual sense. In the forin uprightness of heart and cleanness mer, not to mention the many tribes of hands, leaving it to him to bring to which sprang from his children by pass his own designs in his own way. Keturah, Arabia, Idumea, and Canaan

2. I will make my covenant between were peopled by the descendants of me and thee. Heb. mana will give, Isaac and Ishmael. But from the lani. e. will fix, appoint, confirm; as we have guage of Paul, Rom. 4. 16, 17, it is evibefore explained the term, Gen. 1. 29. dent that a far higher sense is to be ag. It is not of course the annunciation of signed to this promise; that it is to be a new purpose, but simply the renewal, understood not merely of Abraham's the confirmation, of one of long stand natural posterity, but of his spiritual ing. It is in fact the fifth declaration seed also, composed of all true believor utterance of the same gracious de- ers of every age and country. They, sign of making Abraham the father of by the exercise of genuine faith, bean innumerable seed. The words, come heirs of the righteousness of faith, however, in this connection probably and all ils accompanying blessings, and have reference more particularly to the so are rendered adoptively the children establishment of that external sign or of Abraham, the father of the faithful. token of the covenant which the wri. The promise therefore went to make him ter goes on to describe in the ensuing the father of the church of God in all fuverses, and which is afterwards ex- ture ages, or, as the Apostle calls him, pressly called a covenant, v. 10. the heir of the world. Accordingly for

3. Abram fell on his face. The all that the Christian world enjoys or ev.

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5 Neither shall thy name any 6 And I will make thee exceedmore he called Abram; but h thy ing fruitful, and I will make k naname shall be Abraham; ' for a tions of thee; and 1 kings shall father of many nations have I come out of thee. made thee.

k ch. 35. 11. 1 ver. 16. ch. 35. 11. Matt. 1. 6, &c.

h Neh. 9. 7. i Rom. 4. 17.

er will enjoy, it is indebted instrumentally 'Peter,' Matt. 16. 18, and “Saul for to Abrahain and his seed. The high hon- 'Paul, Acts, 13. 9. In like manner the our then of being the stock from which promise to all true believers is, Is. 62 2, the Messiah should spring, and on 'Thou shalt be called by a new name, which the church of God should grow, which the Lord thy God shall name.' is here conferred upon Abraham. Il Again, Rev. 3. 12, 'He that overcomwas this honour that Esau despised eth, I will write upon hiin my new when he sold his birthright; and here name.' Isaac's name was not chanlay the profaneness of that act, which ged, because it was given him by God involved a contempt of the most sacred himself before he was born. In alluof all objects, the Messiah and his ever- sion to this promise the Apostle says, lasting kingdom.

Rom. 4. 17,.'God calleth those things 5. Thy name shall be called Abra- which be not as though they were,' i. e. ham. The change is greater in sense he called or denominated Abraham the than in sound. Abram' (072x), the father of a multitude, because he should former name, is composed of 2x ab, finally become so, though now he had father, and by ram, high or eminent. but one child, and he not the child of *Abraham' (077702) is formed by drop- promise. The custom of changing ping the last letter of the last member, names still obtains in the East. In and inserting the first syllable, of 1720 Persia, frequent examples of this kind hamon, multitude. The constituent occur. One of the most striking is that elements of the name, therefore, are of the Persian king Shah Solyman, 778207 DOON Abram-hamon, high fa- whose reign commenced in 1667 under ther of a multitude, which for conven

his proper name of Suffee. But its ience sake is abbreviated to pinas first years being marked by public and Abraham. It is proper however to ob private calamities, he was persuaded serve that Jerome and some few others that there was a fatality in the name suppose the latter name to be formed he bore, and that a change of it was nesimply by the insertion of the letter cessary to turn the tide of misfortune. nh, one of the letters of Jehovah,' in- He accordingly assumed, with great to the former. But the mass of critics solemnity, the name of Solyman. He adopt the formation given above. This was crowned anew under that name, change of names, of which Abraham's and all the seals and coins which bore is the first on record, imported some that of Suffee were broken, as if one kind of change in the relative state of king had died and another succeeded. the subject, with a renewal or increase Chardin, who was present, has given of the tokens of the Divine favour to

a particular account of this coronation. wards him. Accordingly the name of The constant change of name by the 'Jacob' was changed to that of 'Israel popes on their election, is perhaps from the circumstance related Gen. 32. quite as good an illustration.' Pict. 28. The name of 'Cephas' also was

Bible. Have I made thee. Heb. authoritatively exchanged for that of 700 have I given thee ; i. e. put, ap

ng And I will establish my 8 And P I will give unto thee, covenant between me and thee, and to thy seed after thee, the and thy seed after thee, in their land ? wherein thou art a strangenerations, for an everlasting ger, all the land of Canaan, for covenant; "to be a God unto thee, an everlasting possession; and "I and to othy seed aster thee. will be their God.

m Gal. 3. 17. n ch. 26. 24. & 28. 13. Heb. 11. 16. O Rom. 9. 8.

p ch. 12. 7. & 13. 15. Ps. 105, 9, 11. q ch. 23. 4. & 28. 4. r Ex. 6. 7. Lev. 26. 12. Deut. 4. 37. & 14. 2. & 26. 18. & 29. 13.

pointed, constituted; as explained on of goud to creatures can be set forth. Gen. 1. 29. Gr. Tebelka, Rom. 4. 17. All the privileges of the covenant of

6. Kings shall come out of thee. This mercy, its richest joys and most glorihas been most signally fulfilled. No ous hopes, are summed up in this asone in any age can be compared with surance. He that comes within its Abraham, as far as relates to his nu- scope, as does every believer, can demerous progeny of kings. From him sire nothing more to make him happy. were descended the chiefs of the twelve It is as if he had said, 'Whatever I am tribes of the Hebrews, and after their or have, or purpose in a way of grace separation, the kings of Judah, as well to do, all that will I be to thee and to as the kings of Israel. From him thy seed; all that shall be employed sprang the ancient monarchs of Edom, for thy protection, consolation, and saland the Saracen kings in Arabia, Bab- vation.' ylon, and Egypt, trace back their ori- 8. I will give unto thee-the land gin to him. If we pass from the literal wherein thou art a stranger. Heb. yma to the spiritual fulfilment of the predic- 1 year land of thy sojournings, or tion, we find the heavenly Messiah, the peregrinations ; not of thy permanent king of kings, descending from the abode; the land in which thou hast not same stock, and not only so, but all

a settled but a migratory kind of resitrue Christians, his seed by faith, made dence. - For an everlasting poskings and priests unto God,' Rev. 1. 6. session. Here again the original word

7. For an everlasting covenant. Heb. 2379 olam, everlasting, is to be under0379 57792 covenant of eternity. The stood in the restricted sense explained phrases 'everlasting,''to eternity,' 'for- above, although no precise limitation ever,' &c. it is well known are often to is assigned to it. Indeed it may be adbe taken in a limited sense, implying mitted, that as their enjoyment of the not an absolutely eternal, but an in- promised blessings of the covenant dedefinite duration. Here, however, al- pended on their observance of its conthough the outward sign and adminis- ditions, had they continued in a course tration of the covenant were to be tem- of devout obedience, they might have porary, circumcision being afterwards been in possession of their earthly insuperseded by baptism, Col. 2. 11, 12, heritance at the present day. But they yet the covenant itself, in its spiritual forfeited the blessing by failing to comimport, is rightly termed by the Apos- ply with their stipulated engagements, tle, Heb. 13. 20 everlasting covenant,' and the consequence has been, that as it secures everlasting blessings to all they are now scattered to the four winds those that by faith become interested of heaven. Yet there are many who in it. - To be a God unto thee, and contend that this covenant grant seto thy seed after thee. The highest ex- cured to the seed of Abraham the right pression by which the communication of a perpetual inheritance of the land

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