Ishmael

God hears. (1.) Abraham's eldest son, by Hagar the concubine (Gen. 16:15; 17:23). He was born at Mamre, when Abraham was eighty-six years of age, eleven years after his arrival in Canaan (16:3; 21:5). At the age of thirteen he was circumcised (17:25). He grew up a true child of the desert, wild and wayward. On the occasion of the weaning of Isaac his rude and wayward spirit broke out in expressions of insult and mockery (21:9, 10); and Sarah, discovering this, said to Abraham, "Expel this slave and her son." Influenced by a divine admonition, Abraham dismissed Hagar and her son with no more than a skin of water and some bread. The narrative describing this act is one of the most beautiful and touching incidents of patriarchal life (Gen. 21:14-16). (See HAGAR.)