Abram Inherits Canaan
1 Then Abram went up from Egypt, he and his wife and all that he had, and Lot with him, to the South. 2 Abram was very rich in livestock, in silver, and in gold. 3 And he went on his journey from the South as far as Bethel, to the place where his tent had been at the beginning, between Bethel and Ai, 4 to the place of the altar which he had made there at first. And there Abram called on the name of the Lord.
5 Lot also, who went with Abram, had flocks and herds and tents. 6 Now the land was not able to support them, that they might dwell together, for their possessions were so great that they could not dwell together. 7 And there was strife between the herdsmen of Abram’s livestock and the herdsmen of Lot’s livestock. The Canaanites and the Perizzites then dwelt in the land.
8 So Abram said to Lot, “Please let there be no strife between you and me, and between my herdsmen and your herdsmen; for we are brethren. 9 Is not the whole land before you? Please separate from me. If you take the left, then I will go to the right; or, if you go to the right, then I will go to the left.”
10 And Lot lifted his eyes and saw all the plain of Jordan, that it was well watered everywhere (before the Lord destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah) like the garden of the Lord, like the land of Egypt as you go toward Zoar. 11 Then Lot chose for himself all the plain of Jordan, and Lot journeyed east. And they separated from each other. 12 Abram dwelt in the land of Canaan, and Lot dwelt in the cities of the plain and pitched his tent even as far as Sodom. 13 But the men of Sodom were exceedingly wicked and sinful against the Lord.
14 And the Lord said to Abram, after Lot had separated from him: “Lift your eyes now and look from the place where you are—northward, southward, eastward, and westward; 15 for all the land which you see I give to you and your descendants forever. 16 And I will make your descendants as the dust of the earth; so that if a man could number the dust of the earth, then your descendants also could be numbered. 17 Arise, walk in the land through its length and its width, for I give it to you.”
18 Then Abram moved his tent, and went and dwelt by the terebinth trees of Mamre, which are in Hebron, and built an altar there to the Lord.
The directions in the last two chapters are weird, because it says that “Abram went up from Egypt… to the South”. But Abram definitely went up (North) because they ended up where modern day Israel is. Unless Egypt was in a different place back then, which I don’t think is true. It’s not important, just interesting.
“Abram was very rich in livestock, in silver, and in gold.” This is the blessing of the Lord on Abram’s life. This was the inheritance that he got from the Egyptians while he was there.
Abram was always building altars and calling on the name of the Lord. I think this is a great picture of how our lives should be before God. It doesn’t matter where you are, what you are doing, or who you are with, it’s always a good idea to call on the Lord for instruction and guidance.
“for their possessions were so great that they could not dwell together…” This is almost comical. Can you imagine telling someone that they need to move to the next country because you are too blessed to keep all of your stuff together?
Lot moved out to Jordan, and Abram inherited what would now be modern day Israel.
God told Abram to explore his new land. He also told him that his descendants would be as the dust of the earth (innumerable). Once again, he built an altar for the Lord. He was a man that was constantly after God’s heart.