Daily Word

The last laugh  | Genesis 18:9-15 

9 Then they said to him, “Where is your wife Sarah?” And he said, “There, in the tent.” 10 He said, “I will certainly return to you at this time next year; and behold, your wife Sarah will have a son.” And Sarah was listening at the tent door, which was behind him. 11 Now Abraham and Sarah were old, advanced in age; Sarah was past childbearing.

12 So Sarah laughed to herself, saying, “After I have become old, am I to have pleasure, my lord being old also?” 13 But the Lord said to Abraham, “Why did Sarah laugh, saying, ‘Shall I actually give birth to a child, when I am so old?’ 14 Is anything too difficult for the Lord? At the appointed time I will return to you, at this time next year, and Sarah will have a son.” 15 Sarah denied it, however, saying, “I did not laugh”; for she was afraid. And He said, “No, but you did laugh.”

Genesis 18:9-15 (NASB) 

The big news

So Abraham is entertaining these three men (probably the preincarnate Christ and two angels). They are about to give him news he’s been awaiting  many, many (possibly 25) years for – the timing of the promised son. 

The men ask where Sarah is so that she would hear the news at the same time as Abraham. Sarah will have a child in her arms within a year! They’re 100 and 90 years old; well beyond child-bearing age. Now they have a date they can sink their teeth into. Abraham had already believed, even though he laughed (Gen 17:17).

Last laugh

Sarah also laughed (silently, in her heart) – but her’s (compared to Abraham’s) seems to reflect unbelief; for the Lord’s response in v 14 is, “Is anything too difficult for the LORD?” When Abraham laughed, the Lord didn’t respond in that way to chasten him. In this, we see, “The LORD’s rhetorical question, one of the great statements of Scripture, reminded the elderly couple of His supernatural power, and fortified their faith further (cf. Jer. 32:17, 27).” (planobiblechapel.org

The Lord chastens Sarah – demonstrating His power to know our thoughts. Sarah denies it “out of fear” to the Lord! But the Lord did not visit them to punish Sarah. She did not have to fear that, but surely she should fear the Lord – especially after that demonstration of power.

Another visit

Look carefully and you will notice that the Lord not only promises a son within a year, but also that He will come again to Abraham. Now he had two things to look forward to.


  • Have you ever made a promise or commitment to the Lord and backed out of it? Or maybe you know He’s calling you to step out in faith and action. Don’t deny, act in faith. Do what He’s called (and equipped) you to do or what you promised to do.
Old woman laughing. Image from Pxfuel.com

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