8 At the time that Isaac was weaned from mother’s milk to solid food, his father Abraham prepared a huge feast of solid food to celebrate the occasion. 9 But then drama happened. Sarah saw Ishmael—the 17-year-old* son of Abraham and her Egyptian servant Hagar—laughing disrespectfully at her son, Isaac. She could see trouble in the wings 10 so she turned to Abraham and demanded that he send Hagar and Ishmael packing, “No son of that slave woman is going to share the inheritance with my son, Isaac. No way!”
11 Abraham was distraught at the idea of losing his son Ishmael. 12 But God spoke to Abraham saying, “Calm down. I know that the idea of losing your boy and servant wife are upsetting. But it will be okay. Do whatever Sarah tells you, for it will be through the descendants of Isaac that I’m going to keep my covenant promises. 13 However, I’m also going to make the descendants of Hagar’s son, Ishmael into a great nation -- for he, too, is your son.”
14 So, early the next morning Abraham got up, prepared some bread and a container of water, which he strapped onto Hagar’s shoulders. Then he sent her away with their son. They wandered aimlessly in the wilderness of Beersheba.
15 When they ran out of water, Hagar put Ishmael under a shady bush. 16 She then walked a short distance away and sat down by herself. “I can’t watch him die,” she said, as she burst into uncontrollable tears.
17 But God heard the cries of Ishmael, and the angel of God called to Hagar from heaven, “Hagar, what’s wrong? Do not be afraid! God has heard the boy crying as he lies there. 18 Get up and go comfort him. This isn’t the end. I’m still planning that his descendants will form a great nation.”
19 Then God showed Hagar a well full of water. She quickly filled her container and brought the boy a drink. 20 And God was with Ishmael blessing him as he grew up in the wilderness. He became a skillful archer, 21 and lived in the Paran Desert. His mother found an Egyptian wife for him.
* Abraham was 86 years old when Ishmael was born (Genesis 16:16). Abraham was 100 years old when Isaac was born (21:5). Weaning was typically sometime in the third year.