by Frederick Hoehn, copyright 2012. |
The Middle East is very much in the news these days. There was some incident over there, so the news media interviewed a "man in the street," except in this case it was a woman. A woman with the last name Ibrahim.
I knew a man who was Ibrahim when I lived in Houston, TX. We played chess together. He lived in the same building that I lived in. They called him "Abraham," but one time he showed me his I.D. and it said "Ibrahim."
The lady interviewed on TV had a family name Ibrahim. My acquaintance in Houston had as his first name Ibrahim. The man was a Muslim, so his religion was Islam. Probably so for the woman also.
There are people proud to be descendants of Abraham (who is father of Isaac, who fathered Jacob, whose name God changed to Israel). And, of course, it's nothing to be ashamed of if you're a descendant of Abraham. I'm a son of Abraham myself spiritually, not by genealogy.
Abraham had been promised a son by God, but it seemed to be a long time coming. Sarah, Abraham's wife suggested perhaps Abraham could have a son by Sarah's handmaid, Hagar. So Abraham went along with it, and Hagar bore Abraham a son, Ishmael.
But then when Abraham was about 99, and Sarah was about 90, Sarah bore Isaac to Abraham.
After the death of Sarah, Abraham took another wife, whose name was Keturah, who bore Abraham half a dozen more sons.
So then, Abraham has lots of descendants. But God told Abraham, "In Isaac shall thy seed be called."
In the Holy Bible, from Genesis chapter 21:
verse 9 And Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian, which she had born unto Abraham, mocking.
verse 10 Wherefore she said unto Abraham, "Throw out this bondwoman and her son: for the son of this bondwoman shall not be heir with my son, even with Isaac."
verse 11 And the thing was very grievous in Abraham's sight because of his son.
verse 12 And God said unto Abraham, “Let it not be grievous in thy sight because of the lad, and because of thy bondwoman; in all that Sarah hath said unto thee, hearken unto her voice; for in Isaac shall thy seed be called.
verse 13 And also of the son of the bondwoman will I make a nation, because he is thy seed.”
So then, the Jews are God’s chosen people. God had a covenant with Abraham. That covenant passed down through Isaac to Jacob who is Israel.
There are many Arabs who are descendants of Abraham, but those Arabs are not God’s covenant people. No, that would be the Jews.
My chess partner Ibrahim was a Muslim. So then not only is Ibrahim not one of the covenant people, but also Ibrahim has chosen as his god a god who is not the God of Abraham because the God of Abraham has a Son, whose name is Jesus, who is also called Jesus Christ.
But the Muslim god Allah does not have a son Jesus. The one God has a son Jesus, and the other god does not have a son Jesus. So then those two can’t be the same God. Abraham’s God is the real God who created the heavens and the earth and the animals and the birds and the fish and Adam and Eve.
I don’t really know who Allah is except that I know he’s not the God that created heaven and earth and the animals and Adam.
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