Genesis Week 6 – Promises from Abraham to Isaac

Thank you for reading Genesis with us! Here are the readings for this week:

Readings this week:
Genesis 23:1-26:33
□ 23 – Death of Sarah
□ 24 – Isaac and Rebekah
□ 25:1-18 – Death of Abraham
□ 25:19-34 – Jacob and Esau
□ 26:1-33 – Isaac and King Abimelech

Main Topic – Promises from Abraham to Isaac
In this transitional section of Genesis, God’s covenant promises are passed from Abraham to Isaac. Sarah passes away, and Abraham focuses his attention on finding a wife for his son Isaac. The story of Abraham’s family continues in the account of Isaac, and the birth of his sons Esau and Jacob. Isaac not only receives the promises of God given to Abraham, he also inherits some of Abraham’s weaknesses. In this section, we want to focus on how the promises to Abraham are passed on to the next generation.

Questions for Reflection and Discussion

1. The Death of Sarah (Gen 23) – Sarah is buried near Hebron/Mamre. What is the significance of this location? Consider Abraham’s history here (Gen 13:18, 18:1). How is Abraham regarded in the community? How is God fulfilling His promises?

2. A Wife for Isaac (Gen 24) – Abraham is very insistent that Isaac not marry a local Canaanite girl. Why is this such a matter of grave concern for him, what is the issue here? (see Ex 34:16, Deut 7:3-4) How do we see faith in the actions of Abraham, his servant, Isaac, and in Rebekah?

3. Conflict in the Household (Gen 25) – Isaac shares in Abraham’s faith and promises, and also his household drama. How many parallels can you identify between the two households? (ie. barren wife, long wait for children, children who fight, division in the household, famine, lying, etc.)

4. God’s Faithfulness Even When… (Gen 26) – What covenant promises are confirmed to Isaac? (26:3-4) Then what does Isaac do? (26:7-11) Nevertheless, God blesses Isaac abundantly! (26:12-16) Why are these two stories set next to each other? What does this suggest about God’s faithfulness to his covenant promises? 

Genesis Week 5 – Promises Fulfilled

Thank you for reading Genesis with us! Here are the readings for this week:

Genesis 17:1 – 22:24
□ 17 – Covenant and Circumcision
□ 18-19 – Sodom & Gomorrah
□ 20 – Abraham and King Abimelech
□ 21 – Birth of Isaac
□ 22 – Abraham Tested

Main Topic – Promises Fulfilled
This section of Genesis opens with God reaffirming His promises to Abram, changing his name to Abraham, and marking this special covenant with a new sign. God’s intention to bless the nations through Abraham is evident in all the readings this week – as Abraham intercedes for Sodom and Gomorrah and later brings blessings on the Philistine King Abimelech. We see the miraculous birth of Isaac and later Abraham’s offering of Isaac. Throughout, God’s faithfulness is clear, He keeps His promises and hears the prayers of His people.

Questions for Reflection and Discussion
1. The Covenant (Gen. 17) – What are the covenant promises God restates here? How do Abraham and Sarah respond to the promise? God’s promise demands a response from Abraham. What is the requirement? Why do you think this sign is chosen or uniquely appropriate?


2. Abraham Intercedes (Gen 18) – God’s judgement against Sodom and Gomorrah is sure, but Abraham intercedes six times asking the Lord to spare the righteous. What lessons can we learn about the nature of prayer from this?


3. Sodom and Gomorrah Destroyed (Gen 19) – Lot has been living in Sodom for more than 20 years (since Gen 13). How has he been influenced? Why might he have stayed? What happens to his wife? Why do you think this story is included in the story of Abraham?


4. Isaac is Born (Gen 21) – After waiting 25 years, Abraham is given a son. With Isaac’s birth comes rejoicing, but also conflict with Hagar’s son Ishmael. What happens to Hagar as she is sent away? What promises does God make regarding Ishmael?


5. Abraham is Tested (Gen 22) – God wants complete faith from His people, regardless of the odds. God tests Abraham again, and this time Abraham is determined to obey. What deliberate steps of obedience does he take here? How does God intervene? What promises are repeated at the end of the chapter?