Big Idea: When we pursue God’s will and blessing our way…we accomplish neither.

The downward spiral of pursuing God’s Will…OUR Way:

  1. It starts with DISTRUST in God 1-2a

1 Now Sarai, Abram’s wife had borne him no children, and she had an Egyptian maid whose name was Hagar. 2 So Sarai said to Abram, “Now behold, the LORD has prevented me from bearing children.

Restated: Behind every willful sin against God is the assumption that God is not true to His Word, and so cannot be trusted…

  1. We DEVISE a strategy to get what God has failed to give 2b-3

2b …please go in to my maid; perhaps I will obtain children through her.” And Abram listened to the voice of Sarai. 3 After Abram had lived ten years in the land of Canaan, Abram’s wife Sarai took Hagar the Egyptian, her maid, and gave her to her husband Abram as his wife.

Restated: When we tire of waiting for God to come through, we then figure out our own, man-centered way to meet our needs and desires.

  1. We are DISMAYED when our plans blow up in our face 4

4 He went in to Hagar, and she conceived; and when she saw that she had conceived, her mistress was despised in her sight.

Restated: Despite the initial illusions of success, our sin begins to produce bitter, unexpected fruit.

  1. We DECLARE our innocence, and DISTRIBUTE blame to others 5-6

5 And Sarai said to Abram, “May the wrong done me be upon you. I gave my maid into your arms, but when she saw that she had conceived, I was despised in her sight. May the LORD judge between you and me.” 6 But Abram said to Sarai, “Behold, your maid is in your power; do to her what is good in your sight.”

Restated: When we face the consequences of our choices to pursue God’s will, our way—we often argue for our own innocence while pointing a finger at others…

  1. We DENY the surrounding culture a chance to see God’s faithfulness to always keep His promises

So Sarai treated her harshly, and she fled from her presence

Restated: When God’s people demonstrate the shabbiness of their faith instead of the power of our God, the world, understandably, flees from such hypocrisy.