"Looking With Contempt!"
BIBLE READING: Genesis 16-18
As a product of the Eighties, we had our own little language. The word “bad’ became something that was “good”. The word “cool” became something that meant “hot” or “trendy” and the word “gay”, which used to mean “happy” became someone who was homosexual. Every day at school you could hear words like “like”, “gnarly” or “psych”. Another word that became very popular that you don’t hear much today was the word “SNOB”. That was a word we used to describe someone who we thought was arrogant, or would look down on you or simply thought they were better than you. That seems to describe the way that Hagar had grown to feel towards Sarah. To be able to have children, was something that gave the women of that day, significance. It provided for them a status that barren women were not able to have. Since Sarah was currently not able to have children and Hagar was, the Bible says that she “looked with contempt on her mistress” (Genesis 16.4). One of the recent commentaries translated this as “Hagar looked down her nose at Sarah”. That is what we Generation Xer’s would call a “SNOB”. How is it that a slave girl would look down on her master? The answer lies in her being able to do something that Sarah could not. Sadly, many of us do the same kind of thing today. Everyday people all over the world look down on those who do not dress as they do, make as much money as they do, live in the same type of house as they do, or hasn’t achieved what they have. The Bible also refers to it by another word: Pride. The book of Proverbs has a great deal to say about pride, namely “it goes before destruction” (Proverbs 16.18). The Apostle Paul puts it this way in I Corinthians 10:12, “Let him that thinks he stands, take heed lest he fall”. From what I can tell, “looking down” on someone or being a “Snob”, is not something that befits us as Christians. May we never “look down” on others, but always “look up” to Jesus.