"The Mother of Us All: Sarai”

Sarai is far from a background figure in the Bible’s narrative of salvation. From a settled, wealthy, urban life among the great trading cities of the Euphrates Plain, Sarai joined her husband on a journey into an unknown future, the ultimate destination revealed only step by step. She became Abram’s worthy partner on the long and winding road to faith and hope.

In the Scripture record we catch glimpses of a true princess, whose lasting beauty caught the eye of more than one king, and a forceful personality. But one massive disappointment gave her great sadness, robbed her of personal fulfilment, and left her position as Abram’s wife open to constant, unsettling questions: she was unable to have children.Talk of a descendant for Abram only made her own position more tenuous and uncertain. The promises of God might be true: but true for her too? There were no reasons to think so.

As we thread our way through the story we see her by turns cooperative, gracious and self-sacrificing, insecure, angry, and outspoken, afraid to admit her deep-seated skepticism about her personal place in God’s promises – but finally, “judging him faithful who had promised,” she received a special strengthening from God, her “dead” body came alive, and she was transformed by joy and gladness. Now she sleeps alongside her husband; but God, true to his word, has multiplied her children as the stars in the night sky, and the sand on the beach. Little wonder that Isaiah and Paul describe her as “the mother of us all”!

 

Study 1 “The Mother of Us All: Sarai - Frustration and Disappointment"

Study 2 “The Mother of Us All: Sarai - Doubt and Hope"

Study 3 “The Mother of Us All: Sarai - Faith, Joy and Clarity"

Michael Edgecombe