101-113-Genesis Part 2 Chapter 13
Abram returned from Egypt with a large measure of wealth. There are many burdens that come with wealth. The fear of keeping your wealth, the temptations that wealth can bring, guilt of abusing your wealth, the sorrow of losing wealth, and the account of how you used your wealth. Jesus said in Matthew 19:24 that is very hard for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of Heaven, but it is not impossible. In God’s providence sometimes he makes good men wealthy, and God blessed Abram without sorrow. (Proverbs 10:22)
Lot was the nephew of Abram. Lot seemed to be influenced by the environment that he was in. As long as he remained with Abram he lived a peaceful righteous life. The joined wealth of Abram and Lot caused strife between them and they agreed to separate.
Lot moved to the city of Sodom and settled there. Lot knew he was in a place of great sin and it distressed him as recorded by Peter in 2 Peter 2:7-8. God considered Lot and his family righteous so he sent two angels out to Sodom before its destruction.
While Lot and his daughters were living in a cave, because of the lack of men, his daughters got Lot drunk and lay with him. It has been noted that if Lot had raised them in a more faithful way towards God they may have not committed such an evil act.
God still made good come out of it. The older daughter’s son was named Moab and God gave Moab a section of land in Canaan. One of his descendants was named Ruth who is an ancestor of the Savior of the World Jesus Christ.
Abram and Lot shared poverty together, they shared the hardships of travel from their home to the land of Canaan, and they shared in their wants and built their fortunes together, but their wealth drove them apart. Riches so often cause strife between people and are most often the thing striven over. Wealth stirs up a spirit of contention making people proud and covetous in their relationships. The hard labors of their past could not drive Abram and Lot apart but wealth did. Because of this strife and contention between them and their hired hands, Abram and Lot knew they were hurting their testimony of the faith in God and by Abram’s lead decided to separate. Abram was wise in that as a believer in God he was a man of peace. Fighting contention with contention does not bring about a peaceful solution. Abram gave Lot the choice of which land he wanted and Abram would be satisfied with the other. Abram’s action is a demonstration of trust in the promise of God and His provision to care for Abram. By right God had given all the land to Abram and to share it was a graceful act on Abram’s part. Not only was Abram willing to share what was given to him but also to let Lot have the first pick. It is noble to be willing to yield for peace’ sake.
Abram offering Lot the first choice he quickly made his decision. Often we base our decision on the wrong criteria. Too often we are taken in by the desires of our flesh as Lot was. Lot looked over the valley of the Jordan and saw plenty water and good grazing for his livestock. Lot was taken in by what was best for his worldly desires, “the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life.” (1 John 2:16) If we make decisions based on these motives we cannot expect God’s blessing. We are often disappointed in the outcome of decisions made without thought to what is best for our souls. What is best for our souls should be a guiding principle in all of our decisions. The men of Sodom were exceedingly wicked and they we engulfed in sin. Ezekiel explains their sin as pride, fullness of bread, and abundance of idleness. Lot was grieved by his poor decision in that the sin of Sodom was repulsive to him and his family. It must also have been grievous to Lot also because he brought this trial to himself by a bad decision.
God blessed Abram with spiritual peace for what he had lost in neighborly peace. Even when our relations have left us God remains with us. As a reward God blesses Abram with a good land and an innumerable nation to enjoy it. Abram built an altar to worship, praise, and thank God for His blessings. Our God who is gracious towards us expects us to humble ourselves before Him and praise His name. In times of our difficulties it is profitable for us to meditate on the inheritance that God has prepared for us in His Kingdom in Heaven.