Sunday, April 18, 2021

God’s Timeline – Part 21 Abram and Lot Part Ways

 

God’s Timeline – Part 21

Abram and Lot Part

Pastor Bruce A. Shields

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SERMON INTRODUCTION (2021 A.D. = 5781 Jewish Calendar Year)

 

Abram (Abraham) and Lot Part Ways

-         Creation Week (Approximately 4000 B.C.)

o   Adam, Eve, and the Fall

 

-         Cain and Abel

o   Evil Fills the World

 

-         Noah Did All God Commanded Him

o   The Flood 2400 – 2300 B.C.)

o   God’s Covenant with Noah

 

-         Noah’s Sons and Ham’s Sin

-         Nations of Noah’s Sons

-         Tower of Babel

-         God calls Abram (2090 B.C.)

o   Abram and Lot part ways

 

 

So, we have looked at the Creation week (4,000 B.C.), to the Flood (approximately 1,600 years later 2,400-2,300 B.C.) and an unspecified time later, the Tower of Babel.

 

What we do know from Scripture is the covenant God makes with Abram takes place around 2090 B.C.

 

That means the Tower of Babel took place between 2,400 – 2090 B.C., my guess would be during that 300+ year stretch it took place closer to Abram than the flood because we know that it would take some time for Noah’s sons to have all the children and grandchildren listed in scripture.

 

We know Abram was born in 2165 (Genesis 11:26), so he was 75 when he was called by the Lord in 2090 B.C.

 

Now we are looking at Abram and Lot parting ways and the Lord’s promise to Abram.

 

SCRIPTURE READING

Genesis 13

“So Abram went up from Egypt to the Negev, with his wife and everything he had, and Lot went with him. 2 Abram had become very wealthy in livestock and in silver and gold.

 

3 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 4 and where he had first built an altar. There Abram called on the name of the Lord.

 

5 Now Lot, who was moving about with Abram, also had flocks and herds and tents. 6 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. 7 And quarreling arose between Abram’s herders and Lot’s. The Canaanites and Perizzites were also living in the land at that time.

 

8 So Abram said to Lot, “Let’s not have any quarreling between you and me, or between your herders and mine, for we are close relatives. 9 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.”

 

10 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.) 11 So Lot chose for himself the whole plain of the Jordan and set out toward the east. The two men parted company: 12 Abram lived in the land of Canaan, while Lot lived among the cities of the plain and pitched his tents near Sodom. 13 Now the people of Sodom were wicked and were sinning greatly against the Lord.

 

14 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. 15 All the land that you see I will give to you and your offspring forever. 16 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. 17 Go, walk through the length and breadth of the land, for I am giving it to you.”

 

18 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.”

 

 

 

       I.         ABRAM AND LOT CONTINUED TRAVELING

a.      “So Abram went up from Egypt to the Negev, with his wife and everything he had, and Lot went with him.”

 

                                  i.      Remember, in the previous chapter we read that the Lord promised the land to Abram, and Abram built an altar there, however, the Canaanites were still occupying the land at the time, so Abram continued traveling as a nomad.

 

 

b.     Abram had become very wealthy in livestock and in silver and gold.”

                                  i.      Abram’s livestock was able to grow because of the traveling nomad lifestyle.

 

                               ii.      Moving around allowed the livestock to always have fresh green grass without eating everything or limiting their growth because of small supplies of food.

 

                            iii.      Because of this, the livestock continued to grow, giving food for the clan, as well as an abundance of milk, leather, skins, wool, etc. So much so, they more than likely sold to other tribes as they traveled, acquiring much silver and gold along the way.

 

                             iv.      “From the Negev he went from place to place until he came to Bethel (a sacred place), to the place between Bethel and Ai where his tent had been earlier 4 and where he had first built an altar.”

 

 

c.      “There Abram called on the name of the Lord.”

                                  i.      This became a place of worship. A place where he first built an altar as a remembrance of the promise of the Lord.

 

 

   II.         THE LAND COULD NO LONGER SUPPORT BOTH TRIBES

a.      “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.”

 

                                  i.      Remember Genesis 13:2 “Abram had become very wealthy…”

 

                               ii.      Here we read, “Now Lot, who was moving about with Abram, also had flocks, herds and tents.”

 

                            iii.      The implication here is Lot was “riding the coattails” of Abram and his success.

 

                             iv.      Lot was not mentioned as becoming very wealthy, and he is included, almost as an afterthought in the scripture.

 

                                v.      The scripture then states, “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.”

 

                             vi.      Basically, this town ain’t big enough for the two of us.

 

                          vii.      It wasn’t about the land itself, but the fact that Abram was very wealthy, and Lot’s clan had some stuff, but wanted more.

 

 

b.     “Quarreling arose between Abram’s herders and Lot’s. The Canaanites and Perizzites were also living in the land at that time.”

                                  i.      What were they fighting about?

 

                               ii.      More than likely, who’s sheep belonged to who, and who’s cows were who’s.

 

                            iii.      Cattle rustling and sheep stealing was probably taking place. Causing the two tribes to fight.

 

 

c.      “So Abram said to Lot, “Let’s not have any quarreling 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.”

 

                                  i.      The way this is worded makes it sound like Lot’s tribe was purposefully herding too close to Abrams flocks and herds. “Is not the whole land before you?”

 

                               ii.      In other words, you got all the land around you, why do you have to be all up in my face?

 

                            iii.      Then Abram shows by his solution he was NOT the problem.

 

                             iv.      Let’s part ways, if you go left, I’ll go right, if you go right, I’ll go left.

 

 

III.         THEY PARTED WAYS

a.      “So Lot chose for himself the whole plain of the Jordan and set out toward the east. The two men parted company”

 

                                  i.      Lot had his choice of any part of the land, and he chose to go towards the cities near the Jordan.

 

 

b.     “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.”

 

                                  i.      Did Lot know this when he chose to move there? More than likely, yes.

 

                               ii.      If I say Chicago, New York, Las Vegas, L.A., Compton, many of you get ideas in your head about those places. Whether true or not, rumors, talk, etc. travel.

 

                            iii.      Even if he did not know Sodom was wicked and the people there were sinning greatly against the Lord, two minutes after you got there, you would know.

 

                             iv.      The fact he didn’t leave immediately shows he not only knew, but chose to stay, which is further evidence that Lot and his tribe was more than likely stealing sheep and livestock from Abram and the cause of the dispute between the two tribes.

 

 

c.      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.”

 

                                  i.      After Lot and his tribe left, THEN the Lord spoke again to Abram.

 

                               ii.      Why did the Lord wait? Maybe because He wanted to bless Abram, not his wicked nephew.

 

                            iii.      How do we know he was wicked at the time? Scripture shows deceit, dissension between tribes, that it was Lot’s tribes’ fault, and Lot and his tribe moved to sin city and stayed there.

                             iv.      God doesn’t bless those who desire Sodom, wickedness and sinning against Him.

 

                                v.      Sometimes we can prevent God from blessing us by who we allow in our lives and house.

 

Now that Lot was gone, we see God remind Abram of His promise.

 

 

CONCLUSION –

 

“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.”

 

 

 

Next week we will read about Abram rescuing Lot, or, the consequences of sin (Genesis 14)

 

 

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