24. ABRAHAM, HAGAR AND SARAH
(SLAVERY & TRUE FREEDOM)
(From St Paul's letter to the Galatians, chapter 4:21-31)
"You who want to be subject to the Law, listen to what the Law says. It says, that Abraham had two sons, one by the slave-girl, and one by his free-born wife. The child of the slave-girl was born in the normal way; the child of the free woman was born as the result of God's promise. This can be regarded as an allegory: the women stand for two covenants.
The first, who comes from Mt. Sinai and whose children are slaves, is Hagar. For Sinai is a mountain in Arabia which has affinity to the present Jerusalem in slavery with her children. (Covenant of The Old Testament and the Synagogue)
But, the second, the (heavenly) Jerusalem which is above, is free, and she is our mother. (Covenant of The New Testament and the Church)
Now we, my brothers (and sisters) like Isaac, are children (of the free woman) of the promise, and as at the time the child born in the normal way (Ishmael) persecuted the child born according to the spirit (Isaac), so also now. Does not the Scripture say: "Drive away that slave-girl and her son: this slave-girl's son is not to share the inheritance with Isaac, the son of the free woman?" (Genesis 21:10)
"Therefore, brethren, we are not (to be) children of a slave-girl (any longer), but (we are all called to become children) of the free woman - in virtue of the freedom wherewith Christ, the Messiah, has made us free." (Note: We have all, at some time, been children of the slave-girl, enslaved by our sins. To say otherwise is to be a liar. See 1 John 1:8-10.)
So, now the time has come for all men, including all of the Islamic children of Hagar, to become children of the free woman and share in the inheritance of Isaac and Jacob, with all who are to become heirs of God's promise to Abraham through their faith in the Messiah.
This is also to say, that all who remain slaves in their hearts to the flesh and to the material world, cannot inherit the joys reserved for the children of faith whose hearts have been liberated by the Messiah to share in the wonders of the freedom of the Children of God.
As God said to Abraham: "In you, all the tribes of the earth shall be blessed." (Genesis 12:3; Psalm 71:17) So, it is for every person of every tribe, including all the persons of the tribes of Ishmael, and of every nation in the world, to come to the Messiah, the Saviour, for their own liberation "as there is no other Name given to men under Heaven by which we can be saved." (Acts 4:12 & 1 John 4:14)
"Come! Let us all (be converted: Muslims, Jews, Christians, Pagans, Unbelievers, All, and let us all) go up to the House of the Lord, together." (Micah 4:2)