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Friday, August 2 2013
Genesis 13: The Parting of Abram and Lot
"The land was not able to bear them, that they might dwell together: for their substance was great, so that they could not dwell together"
Abram's sojourn in Egypt resulted in his family (his wife Sarai and his nephew Lot) becoming very wealthy.
"12:10 And there was a famine in the land: and Abram went down into Egypt to sojourn there; for the famine was grievous in the land. 12:11 And it came to pass, when he was come near to enter into Egypt, that he said unto Sarai his wife, Behold now, I know that thou art a fair woman to look upon: 12:12 Therefore it shall come to pass, when the Egyptians shall see thee, that they shall say, This is his wife: and they will kill me, but they will save thee alive. 12:13 Say, I pray thee, thou art my sister: that it may be well with me for thy sake; and my soul shall live because of thee.
Abram returned to the southern area (the "negev"; see The Negev Of Israel) of the land of Canaan, where he would remain for the rest of his life. "And Abram was very rich in cattle, in silver, and in gold."
"13:1 And Abram went up out of Egypt, he, and his wife, and all that he had, and Lot with him, into the south. 13:2 And Abram was very rich in cattle, in silver, and in gold.
Whether the Egyptians had provided to Lot directly, or whether Abram had shared his new wealth with Lot is not specified. Nevertheless, "the land was not able to bear them, that they might dwell together: for their substance was great, so that they could not dwell together" and as a result, "there was a strife between the herdmen of Abram's cattle and the herdmen of Lot's cattle."
"13:5 And Lot also, which went with Abram, had flocks, and herds, and tents.
Abram then generously offered Lot the first choice of where to settle, while Abram would go in the other direction.
"13:8 And Abram said unto Lot, Let there be no strife, I pray thee, between me and thee, and between my herdmen and thy herdmen; for we be brethren. 13:9 Is not the whole land before thee? separate thyself, I pray thee, from me: if thou wilt take the left hand, then I will go to the right; or if thou depart to the right hand, then I will go to the left." (Genesis 13:8-9 KJV)
Lot's choice would not have been wise Abram's choice. Lot was not unrighteous - he just hadn't learned his lessons yet. While the area around Sodom was beautiful and well watered, just as many such "Sodom" places today, it was a "beautiful" place of moral depravity and evil. Lot made his choice, and soon regretted it: "2:6 And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha into ashes condemned them with an overthrow, making them an ensample unto those that after should live ungodly; 2:7 And delivered just Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked: 2:8 (For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds;)" (2 Peter 2:6-8 KJV).
"13:10 And Lot lifted up his eyes, and beheld all the plain of Jordan, that it was well watered every where, before the LORD destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah, even as the garden of the LORD, like the land of Egypt, as thou comest unto Zoar. 13:11 Then Lot chose him all the plain of Jordan; and Lot journeyed east: and they separated themselves the one from the other." (Genesis 13:10-11 KJV)
So it was that "Abram dwelled in the land of Canaan, and Lot dwelled in the cities of the plain, and pitched his tent toward Sodom."
"13:12 Abram dwelled in the land of Canaan, and Lot dwelled in the cities of the plain, and pitched his tent toward Sodom. 13:13 But the men of Sodom were wicked and sinners before the LORD exceedingly." (Genesis 13:12-13 KJV)
The LORD (Who was and is Jesus Christ; see Genesis 1: In The Beginning Was The Word and The Kingdom Of The LORD God) then made a further promise to Abram, regarding his "seed" (see also The LORD's Seed Covenants With The Two Men Of Iraq).
"13:14 And the LORD said unto Abram, after that Lot was separated from him, Lift up now thine eyes, and look from the place where thou art northward, and southward, and eastward, and westward: 13:15 For all the land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed for ever. 13:16 And I will make thy seed as the dust of the earth: so that if a man can number the dust of the earth, then shall thy seed also be numbered. 13:17 Arise, walk through the land in the length of it and in the breadth of it; for I will give it unto thee." (Genesis 13:14-17 KJV)
Abram then moved his encampment to the area around Hebron, where he remained for the rest of his life (see Camped Out In Canaan).
"13:18 Then Abram removed his tent, and came and dwelt in the plain of Mamre, which is in Hebron, and built there an altar unto the LORD." (Genesis 13:18 KJV)
Fact Finder: How were herds of cattle involved in the early history of Abraham and his descendants?
This Day In History, August 2
338 BC: The Macedonian army under Philip II (the father of Alexander the Great; see A History Of Jerusalem: Greeks, Ptolemies, Seleucids and Alexander The Great In Prophecy) defeated forces of Athens and Thebes in the Battle of Chaeronea, thereby establishing Macedonian hegemony ("the political and military domination of one country over its allies" i.e. an emperor) in Greece and the Aegean.
216 BC: The Battle of Cannae during the Second Punic War; Carthaginian forces led by Hannibal defeated a numerically-superior Roman army under command of consuls Lucius Aemilius Paullus and Gaius Terentius Varro.
47 BC: Julius Caesar defeated Pharnaces at Zela in Syria and declared his famous "veni, vidi, vici" i.e. "I came, I saw, I conquered" (see The Politics Of Rome and A History Of Jerusalem: Pompey And The Caesars).
1100: King William II of England, son of William the Conqueror, was killed by an arrow while hunting in the New Forest.
1492: Jews were expelled from Spain by King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella (King Henry VIII of England became their son-in-law when he married their daughter, Catherine of Aragon; Henry's divorce from her triggered the split of England from the Church of Rome). Ironically, another Jew (through at least one of his parents) was just then making his first voyage of discovery to the New World, in the employ of that same king and queen. His name was Christopher Columbus.
1552: The Treaty of Passau revoked the Augsburg Interim of 1548 and gave religious freedom to Lutherans in Germany.
1589: During France's religious war, King Henry III of France was assassinated at St. Cloud by a monk who stabbed the king.
1610: While searching for a Northwest Passage, English explorer Henry Hudson sailed into the Canadian bay that is today named after him - Hudson Bay. Due to the vast size of the bay, Hudson at first thought that he had reached the Pacific Ocean.
1802: Napoleon was proclaimed "Consul for Life" by the French Senate after a plebiscite from the French people.
1832: Troops under General Henry Atkinson massacred Sauk Indian men, women and children who were followers of Black Hawk at the Bad Axe River in Wisconsin. To prevent further slaughter, Black Hawk himself surrendered 3 weeks later, bringing the Black Hawk War to an end.
1897: During the Anglo-Afghan wars (of that time), the Siege of Malakand ended when a relief column was able to reach the British garrison in the Malakand states, adjacent to India's North West Frontier Province.
1914: Germany invaded Luxembourg. German emperor Wilhelm II then delivered a 12-hour ultimatum to King Albert I of Belgium: German troops must be given free passage through Belgium on their way to invade France. King Albert refused, citing the 1839 Treaty of London where Britain, Austria, Prussia, France and Russia agreed that Belgium should form an independent and permanently neutral state. The next day, Germany declared war on France and invaded Belgium (listen to our Sermon The European World Wars).
1917: Royal Navy officer E.H. Dunning became the first pilot to land on the deck of a moving ship. He landed a Sopwith Pup on the HMS Furious.
1922: A typhoon struck Shantou, China; over 50,000 people were killed.
1932: The positron (an antiparticle of the electron) was discovered by Carl D. Anderson.
1934: Adolf Hitler declared himself Fuehrer ("Leader," according to the present world's idea of what "leading" means) of Germany upon the death of President Hindenberg (see Presidential Quotes On War, Terrorism, Religion).
1939: Albert Einstein and Leo Szilard wrote a letter to U.S. President Franklin Roosevelt, urging him to begin development of atomic weapons before Germany (Nazi Germany was already doing research work).
1964: The Gulf of Tonkin incident. North Vietnamese gunboats allegedly fired on the U.S. destroyers Maddox and Turner Joy off the coast of Vietnam. Later eyewitness accounts claim that the incident never really happened, that the ships were merely in close proximity in Vietnamese territorial waters (which gave the Vietnamese ships every right to be there), but was either exaggerated or provoked by Lyndon Johnson as a pretext to escalate U.S. involvement in the Vietnam civil war (Vietnam had been divided into north and south by colonial France in the 1950s).
1958: King Hussein of Jordan dissolved the "Arab Union" between Jordan and Iraq which had been formed February 14 of that year.
1968: An earthquake struck Casiguran, Aurora, Philippines, killing more than 270 people.
1989: Trade restrictions between Britain and Argentina were lifted for the first time since the 1982 Falklands war.
1990: Iraq invaded Kuwait, leading to the "Gulf War" (not to be confused with the later invasion of Iraq by George W. Bush in his hunt for non-existent "weapons of mass destruction").