God’s Life-Giving Word of Promise
Genesis 13:1-18: Abram and Lot (Abram’s nephew) each have flocks of sheep, goats, and cattle. Because their herdsmen were quarreling, Abram suggests to Lot that they separate. Abram gives Lot first choice to select the land he wants
[The LORD said to Abram:] “Now, go and look over the whole land, because I am going to give it all to you.”
Abram and Lot Separate
1Abram went north out of Egypt to the southern part of Canaan with his wife and everything he owned, and Lot went with him. 2Abram was a very rich man, with sheep, goats, and cattle, as well as silver and gold. 3Then he left there and moved from place to place, going toward Bethel. He reached the place between Bethel and Ai where he had camped before 4and had built an altar. There he worshiped the Lord.
5Lot also had sheep, goats, and cattle, as well as his own family and servants. 6And so there was not enough pasture land for the two of them to stay together, because they had too many animals. 7So quarrels broke out between the men who took care of Abram's animals and those who took care of Lot's animals. (At that time the Canaanites and the Perizzites were still living in the land.)
8Then Abram said to Lot, “We are relatives, and your men and my men shouldn't be quarreling. 9So let's separate. Choose any part of the land you want. You go one way, and I'll go the other.”
10 Lot looked around and saw that the whole Jordan Valley, all the way to Zoar, had plenty of water, like the Garden of the Lord or like the land of Egypt. (This was before the Lord had destroyed the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah.) 11So Lot chose the whole Jordan Valley for himself and moved away toward the east. That is how the two men parted. 12Abram stayed in the land of Canaan, and Lot settled among the cities in the valley and camped near Sodom, 13whose people were wicked and sinned against the Lord.
Abram Moves to Hebron
14After Lot had left, the Lord said to Abram, “From where you are, look carefully in all directions. 15 I am going to give you and your descendants all the land that you see, and it will be yours forever. 16I am going to give you so many descendants that no one will be able to count them all; it would be as easy to count all the specks of dust on earth! 17Now, go and look over the whole land, because I am going to give it all to you.” 18So Abram moved his camp and settled near the sacred trees of Mamre at Hebron, and there he built an altar to the Lord.
What was the source of the dispute between Abram’s and Lot’s herdsmen? How is Abram portrayed in today’s reading? Why did Lot choose as he did? What did God promise Abram?
Were you ever involved in a quarrel with someone? If so, how was the situation resolved?
Lord God, help me to follow the path of peace and to resolve disputes fairly. Teach me your ways, O Lord, and to glorify you in all I do and say. Amen.
Those called upon to mediate disputes
Genesis 14:1-24: Abram rescues Lot.