Who is Hagar?
(flight), an Egyptian woman who lived in the family of Abraham as bond-woman. At Sarah's own suggestion, she became the concubine of Abraham. When she conceived, her mistress was "despised in her eyes." Gen 16:4. In consequence of it, Hagar was harshly treated and fled away from the house of Abraham. She made her way toward Egypt, her native country, through the wilderness of Shur, and while resting herself near a fountain by the wayside she was visited by an angel, who promised her an innumerable seed and a son whose name was to be Ishmael. The angel at the same time directed her to return home and submit herself to her mistress. The place of this manifestation was afterward known as Beer-lahai-roi, "well of the living and seeing [God]." Gen 16:14. We lose sight of Hagar entirely from this time on till the festival of Isaac's weaning. On that occasion Sarah saw Ishmael mocking or making sport of her child. She immediately demanded the banishment of Ishmael and his mother from their home. Abraham was pained by the demand; but being divinely admonished to comply, he rose up early in the morning, and supplying Hagar with bread and a bottle of water sent her and her child away. She found her way to the wilderness of Beer-sheba; but her supply of water was exhausted. Placing the child under one of the shrubs that she might not see it die, she mingled her prayers with its cries. God heard the prayer, and disclosed to her a fountain. She at the same time received again the promise (fulfilled in the Arabs) that Ishmael would be the father of a great nation. Gen 21:9-21. Paul refers to Hagar, Gal 4:25, as a type of the Law and its bondage.