Now Abraham gave all that he had to Isaac; but to the sons of his concubines, Abraham gave gifts while he was still living, and sent them away from his son Isaac eastward, to the land of the east. – Genesis 25:5-6
I was a bit surprised when I first discovered that Abraham fathered other children besides Isaac and Ishmael (a fact I might have overlooked without a thorough reading of the entire Bible). After Sarah died, Abraham went on to have more children with Keturah (whom he took as his wife). He also fathered other children by his concubines who he eventually sent east, but not before providing for the sons of these women.
Is it any wonder that so many lay claim to Abrahamic lineage today? If not for the biblical record identifying Isaac as the “son of the promise” (and also describing Abraham’s actions to solidify that position), there would be an even bigger mess with which to contend. Multiple religions, beyond Islam, could equally trace their heritage and declare a covenantal relationship that does not exist.
What is my point? God’s pathways are usually less complicated than ours, and always the most efficient in the accomplishment of His purposes, but they will require faith in His ability (and His alone) to accomplish them. We will have to limit our fleshly desires and curb our earthly wisdom in order to remain obedient to God, but if we do so, we will enjoy a much-preferred outcome (if not an easier path to the destination).
God’s ways are often not ours, but they always lead us where we need to be.
That’s best which God sends. ‘Twas His will, now it is mine. – Robert Bulwer-Lytton