Abram and Lot were blessed with a great fortune and with large amounts of livestock. It became impossible for them to live in the same land, so to keep the peace Abram made the decision to separate. He gave the choice to Lot of the land he wanted. Lot took the Jordan Valley, while Abram settled in the land of Canaan.
God promises Abram to make his family as many as the dust of the earth. Abram moved his family to the place God indicated as the Promise Land and he built an altar to the Lord.
- Abram desires peace
- Abram is a good leader
- Abram is faithful
- Abram is not greedy
- God continues to keep His promises and blesses Abram
Kings will be kings and they will fight. Unfortunately, when kings get greedy this involves capturing land and people. In one of the many battles that the Middle East has experienced, this one involved capturing Lot. Abram was told of this and he took his men and were able to fight the enemy, take all of the people and possessions, including Lot.
The King of Sodom in his defeat comes to meet Abram. The King of Sodom tries to bargain with Abram, asks that he have all of his men back and that Abram can keep the possessions. Abram will not take anything from King of Sodom so that nobody could say he got rich from the king. He does, however, allow his men to choose what they want.
Melchizedek, King of Salem, brought out bread and wine and blessed Abram. Then Abram offers a tithe to the priest. Melchizedek is sometimes referred to as an archetype of Christ for the reasons just mentioned. Jesus does come from this priestly line.
- Abram is a warrior
- Abram is a clever captain
- Abram is well-known and influential
- Look! The King of Salem (Peace! Righteousness!) Look familiar?
This is such an important chapter: God makes a covenant with Abram. This changes everything. In a very basic summary, God tells Abram that he will have an heir and his offspring will number the stars; God reminds Abram of who He is and what He has done; yet, Abram still doubts. So God tells him to sacrifice, yet Abram does not do it right. God tells Abram that his offspring will wander the desert for 400 years, but in the fourth generation they will return to the land of Canaan and defeat the Amorites (yeah, Joshua!).
- God is faithful
- God uses sinners
- While we know God’s character and have experienced Him, it still may be difficult for us to trust
Abram being human makes a mistake. He listens to his wife Sarai who doesn’t trust that God will allow her to bear a son. So she tells Abram to conceive with her servant Hagar. Abram does (remind you of Adam and Eve?) and Hagar gets pregnant. Sarai obviously is jealous and is cruel to Hagar. She flees but God meets her at a well and tells her that he will protect her and that her son will have a multitude of sons. She returns to Abram and has her son Ishmael, thus beginning the genealogical line of Islam.
- Abram’s need for peace turns to passiveness and he allows his wife to usurp his role
- God cares and loves his children
- God redeems the mistakes we make
- God’s plan will not be thwarted
God gives Abram a new name – Abraham – because he is a father of many nations. God also tells Abraham that all men must be circumcised , which will be a sign of the covenant God made with Abraham’s offspring.
Sarai also gets a new name, Sarah, name means Princess and speckled. He blesses her and promises that she will have a son and will be the mother of future kings. Abraham laughs in response stating that they are both too old to bear children. God tells him that he will make a covenant with his son who will be named Isaac.
Abraham then takes the men of his household to get circumcised. He was 99 years old.
- God is faithful and has a plan
- We have a hard time trusting and seeing the possible in the seemingly impossible
- Abraham, while quick with his tongue, still obeys and is faithful