When we first meet Hagar, she is in the service of Sarai and Abram. Hagar is Egyptian and may have been acquired by them while they were in Egypt during the famine.
Since Sarai was barren, she followed the cultural tradition of the time and offered Hagar to Abram in order to produce an heir. Hagar had no say in this decision and became pregnant in no time.
The pregnancy ignited a rivalry between Hagar and Sarai that resulted in extremely strained relations. With Abram’s blessing and indifference towards Hagar, Sarai became so abusive to Hagar that she ran away. Pregnant. Alone. To the desert. To die?
Hagar found her way to a spring in the desert. She would not die after all.
It was at the spring she met an angel of the LORD.
Hagar was comforted, encouraged, redirected back to Abram and Sarai, and promised a large family.
For the first time (in her life?), she felt “seen” and no longer “alone.”
This was a new experience for her. This encounter with the one, true God changed the trajectory of her life. She returned home and bore a son, Ishmael.
Hagar is highly revered in Islam as Mohammed traces his lineage straight back to her.
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