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Surveying the Prospects — Genesis Chapter 13

This blog post will cover the devotional #82 for Genesis Chapter 13.

Please note that this devotional book is for sale as a physical (paperback) &/or digital (PDF) book on my website.

[82] Genesis 13:1-18

When Abram left his misguided visit to Egypt, he went back to his previous campsite (between Bethel and Hai) where he’d made his altar to God and called upon His name, which he did again upon his return. He returned heavy-laden with riches and cattle, and Lot was with him with his own flocks, herds, and tents. They had so much property between the two of them that the area couldn’t house both of their estates (we’ll see the same situation occur, in devotional #155, between Abram’s grandsons, Jacob and Esau). There were also rising conflicts between their cattle herders, which Abram wanted to avoid having enter their own relationship and spread through their community. So, he suggested a reasonable solution. They should separate enough to have healthy boundaries. Abram even offered Lot first dibs on which direction he’d like to head. When Lot surveyed the land, his eyes feasted on the gorgeous plains of Jordan—lush with life. Scriptures compared it to the garden of the Lord and the land of Egypt. He couldn’t resist and chose to head east and have the entire plain of Jordan as his land. Thus, Abram stayed in Canaan, while Lot went to the cities of the plain, which included Sodom and Gomorrah (whose inhabitants were extremely sinful). Lot thought that ‘the grass was greener on the other side’—but it was actually quite dark and dirty. It wasn’t until Lot left that God informed Abram that all the land that he could see, in all 360 degrees, would be given to him and his offspring forever. In Deuteronomy 34:3, God took Moses to the Mountain of Nebo, at the top of Pisgah, and showed him all the land of Gilead—up to Dan—and all of Naphtali, Ephraim, Manasseh, and Judah—to the farthest sea, as well as the south, the plain of the valley of Jericho—to Zoar. He told Moses, “This is the land which I swore unto Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.” Though Moses lost his privilege of entering the Promised Land, God allowed him to survey it, as Abram got to do. In Genesis 13:17, God told Abram to walk the length and width of it, to get a feel for the coverage of his offspring’s future territory—which He said would be filled with countless descendants. He repeated His promises of multiplying Abram’s seed and giving him a great country. In devotional #79, we mentioned that God would use very similar phrasing (from His conversation with Abram in Genesis 13:15, 16) when He repeated His promises to Jacob in Genesis 28:13, 14. ‘I will give this land—to the north, south, east, and west—to you and your seed; which will be as the dust of the earth in number.’

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