Scriptures

Genesis 13

Introduction

‘So, Abram went up from Egypt to the Negev, with his wife and everything he had, and Lot went with him. Abram had become very wealthy in livestock and in silver and gold. From the Negev he went from place to place until he came to Bethel, to the place between Bethel and Ai where his tent had been earlier and where he had first built an altar. There Abram called on the name of the LORD.’ Genesis 13:1-4

Here we find Abram is right back to where he started, Genesis 12:9, back in Genesis 12, he thought he would go on his own accord, Genesis 12:10, and because he went, it forced him to lie. He had a lack of faith for God and so because of the famine he went to where the food was instead of trusting God to supply his needs.

As always with sin, there is a price to pay, his sin led others to sin and so Abram placed himself into a place of temptation where it let to even an ungodly king rebuking him, Genesis 12:18. God could have looked after Abram during the time of the famine but he had to learn the hard way, I guess that real faith takes time to build.

Abram is now in the Negev is the south, which was Edomite country, he has become very wealthy, with livestock, silver and gold, Genesis 17:12-13 / Genesis 17:23. He eventually makes it back to his camping area which was between Bethel and Hai.

Having put his sin behind him, he offered his sacrifice and got on and now he’s back to where God wants him to be. Although the text doesn’t tell us, I believe we can safely assume that the famine if now over, and he is his livestock can now settle in the Canaan.

‘Now Lot, who was moving about with Abram, also had flocks and herds and tents. But the land could not support them while they stayed together, for their possessions were so great that they were not able to stay together. And quarrelling arose between Abram’s herders and Lot’s. The Canaanites and Perizzites were also living in the land at that time. So, Abram said to Lot, ‘Let’s not have any quarrelling between you and me, or between your herders and mine, for we are close relatives. Is not the whole land before you? Let’s part company. If you go to the left, I’ll go to the right; if you go to the right, I’ll go to the left.’ Genesis 13:5-9

It’s obvious that the land wasn’t fully recovered from the drought, because it wasn’t able to support both Abram and Lot. It’s clear Abram is doing God’s will because trouble is now brewing between the herdsmen, but it must be noted there was no trouble between Abram and his nephew Lot. Notice when the Canaanites and Perizzites saw them arguing this wasn’t a good example of God’s people.

This is the first real mention of wealth in the Bible, but the difference was Lot’s wealth possessed him, he chose wealth, but Abram didn’t let his possession possess him. This is seen in Abram allowing Lot to choose and so, he yielded to Lot out of love, his rights didn’t obsess him, Philippians 2:4. Abram trusted God and graciously gave Lot the choice because he knew that God would look after him.

‘Lot looked around and saw that the whole plain of the Jordan toward Zoar was well watered, like the garden of the LORD, like the land of Egypt. (This was before the LORD destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah.) So, Lot chose for himself the whole plain of the Jordan and set out toward the east. The two men parted company: Abram lived in the land of Canaan, while Lot lived among the cities of the plain and pitched his tents near Sodom. Now the people of Sodom were wicked and were sinning greatly against the LORD.’ Genesis 13:10-13

Lot makes his choice and picks the whole plain of Jordan, he obviously chose by sight and not by faith as Abram did, 2 Corinthians 5:7 / Jeremiah 17:9. Notice that Lot pitched his tents near Sodom, this is later going to prove to be a bad mistake for him and his family. Those who lived in Sodom were wicked and totally lived in a way opposite to what God requires of people.

Maybe Lot thought he would be fine if he just lived on the outskirts of Sodom but as we shall see later, he eventually moved into the city, surrounded himself with sin and would need rescuing.

‘The LORD said to Abram after Lot had parted from him, ‘Look around from where you are, to the north and south, to the east and west. All the land that you see I will give to you and your offspring forever. I will make your offspring like the dust of the earth, so that if anyone could count the dust, then your offspring could be counted. Go, walk through the length and breadth of the land, for I am giving it to you.’ So, Abram went to live near the great trees of Mamre at Hebron, where he pitched his tents. There he built an altar to the LORD.’ Genesis 13:14-18

Notice after Lot left, God tells Abram to explore the land and get a feel for it. I can imagine Abram thinking to himself, but all this land can’t be his because Lot has now possessed some of it, and so, the Lord once again renewed His promise to Abram to give him the land of Canaan. He also renewed His promise that his descendants would be as the dust of the earth. Remember the Messiah would eventually come through his linage, Genesis 3:15.

It was at this time that Abram moved to the area of Hebron which means communion, at the time it was known as Mamre which means vision. Abraham possessed his land by faith.

Go To Genesis 14

 

DAILY BIBLE VERSE

"May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit."

Romans 15:13

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