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Sunday, September 17 2017
What Did Abraham Ask Ephron To Do?
"And he spake unto Ephron in the audience of the people of the land, saying, But if thou wilt give it, I pray thee, hear me: I will give thee money for the field; take it of me, and I will bury my dead there"
The Hittites were an ancient nation that lived in the general area of Asia Minor (now known as Turkey; see also Turkey In History And Prophecy) and Syria (see The Syrian Connection). Although not as generally familiar as other ancient empires (see The Empires Of Bible History And Prophecy), at the peak of their power the Hittites challenged the Egyptians and Assyrians (see also Children Of Ham - The Origin Of Egypt And Iraq) for control of what is now the land of Israel. The Hittites are mentioned prominently in Bible history (see also the Fact Finder question below).
Abraham was born in what is today Iraq (see Biblical Eras: The Messiah's Covenants With The Two Men Of Iraq and Biblical Eras: Abraham, Isaac And Jacob Were Not Israelites Or Jews). When he obeyed the LORD's command to move to a new prophetic land (see Abraham's Journey: When Will He Arrive?), he did so and lived there for his entire life as a foreigner, subject to the people who then occupied and ruled it. Among them, at that time, were the Hittites.
When Sarah (see Biblical Eras: From Abram And Sarai To Abraham And Sarah) died, Abraham sought a burial tomb for his wife. His choice was a local cave at Hebron, but it was already owned by someone else. Abraham then sought to purchase the property from the Ephron, a Hittite.
"23:1 And Sarah was an hundred and seven and twenty years old: these were the years of the life of Sarah. 23:2 And Sarah died in Kirjatharba; the same is Hebron in the land of Canaan: and Abraham came to mourn for Sarah, and to weep for her.
Although not one of their own people, righteous Abraham the Iraqi was held in high regard by the Hittites.
"23:5 And the children of Heth answered Abraham, saying unto him, 23:6 Hear us, my lord: thou art a mighty prince among us: in the choice of our sepulchres bury thy dead; none of us shall withhold from thee his sepulchre, but that thou mayest bury thy dead.
Ephron too held Abraham with great respect. He at first offered to give the cave to Abraham at no charge.
"23:10 And Ephron dwelt among the children of Heth: and Ephron the Hittite answered Abraham in the audience of the children of Heth, even of all that went in at the gate of his city, saying, 23:11 Nay, my lord, hear me: the field give I thee, and the cave that is therein, I give it thee; in the presence of the sons of my people give I it thee: bury thy dead." (Genesis 23:10-11 KJV)
So it was then that Ephron not only agreed to transfer the lawful ownership to Abraham, but to allow him to pay for it.
"23:12 And Abraham bowed down himself before the people of the land. 23:13 And he spake unto Ephron in the audience of the people of the land, saying, But if thou wilt give it, I pray thee, hear me: I will give thee money for the field; take it of me, and I will bury my dead there.
Over the years afterward, the tomb became not only a place of Abraham's own burial, but also that of his son Isaac and his wife Rebekah, and of Israel's son Jacob (who the LORD renamed as Israel) and his wife Leah (see also Jacob's Mummy).
This Day In History, September 17
480 BC: The Battle of Thermopylae (see also Send In The Marines) between the Spartans of Greece (see also A History Of Jerusalem: Greeks, Ptolemies, Seleucids) and the Achaemenid Empire that was founded by Cyrus the Great (see The Prophecies Of Cyrus of Persia). The conflict between the Persian and Greek empires were prophesied in the Holy Bible long before they happened (see The Ram And He Goat Of Persia And Greece).
1394: All Jews in France were ordered out of the country by French King Charles VI (see also Jews - Three Tribes and Three Meanings).
1577: The Peace of Bergerac was signed between Henry III of France and the Huguenots (members of the Protestant Reformed Church of France during the 16th and 17th centuries).
1656: Massachusetts enacted laws against Quakers. While many of the settlers and fabled "pilgrims" (see also The Pilgrims to understand the actual Biblical meaning of "pilgrim") had left Europe to escape religious persecution, it didn't take long in their "New World" before they began doing exactly what their oppressors had been doing to them back in the "old country" - then as now, those who commit revolutions often become far more of what they supposedly rebelled against (see When Do Liberals Become Conservatives? and Why Are Politicians Called Left Or Right?).
1849: U.S. abolitionist Harriet Tubman escaped from slavery.
1894: The Battle of Yalu River, the largest naval battle of the First Sino-Japanese (China-Japan) War.
1908: The "Wright Flyer," piloted by Orville Wright, with U.S. Army Lieutenant Thomas Selfridge as a passenger, crashed, killing Selfridge, who thereby became the first U.S. airplane fatality (see also Who Was The First To Fly?).
1916: During the First World War (1914-1918), Manfred von Richthofen ("The Red Baron") made his first air combat kill near Cambrai, France. He went on to shoot down 80 (79 British, 1 Belgian) enemy aircraft before he was shot down and killed by a Canadian fighter pilot, Captain Roy Brown (of Carleton Place, Ontario), over northern France in 1918.
1939: Soviet forces invaded Poland from the east while German forces were invading from the west; the Polish government and military command fled to exile in Romania.
1940: Adolf Hitler decided to "postpone" his invasion of Britain after his Luftwaffe met unexpectedly potent resistance from British fighter pilots in the "Battle of Britain" air war.
1948: United Nations representative Count Folke Bernadotte was assassinated in Jerusalem. The Swedish soldier and diplomat headed the Swedish Red Cross during World War Two and is credited with saving 20,000 Jewish inmates of concentration camps. As a UN mediator in Palestine, at the time of the creation of the present-day state of Israel that year, Bernadotte was murdered by Jewish terrorists who ignored all that Bernadotte had done for the people of Judah (see Israel In History and Prophecy: Israel Of Judah and Israel In History and Prophecy: Balfour Declaration).
1956: Television was first broadcast in Australia.
1978: The Camp David Peace Accord was signed between Prime Minister Menachem Begin of Israel and President Anwar Sadat of Egypt.
1980: The independent trade union Solidarity was established after strikes at the Lenin Shipyard in Gdansk, Poland.
1980: Former Nicaraguan President Anastasio Somoza Debayle was assassinated in Asuncion, Paraguay.
1993: The last "Cold War" Russian troops left Poland (see Russia Or Europe - Who Has Been The Invader?).
2001: The New York Stock Exchange reopened after the September 11 attacks, the longest trading disruption since the Great Depression.