I devoted my last blog entry, A New Promise (Part 2), to Abram’s faith and trust in God. In this blog entry, I would like us to explore another amazing character trait of Abram’s, which was his ability to put others before him.
After Abram and Lot each went his own way, Abram settled in Hebron. Even the meaning of “Hebron” (to connect) is a foreshadowing of what was to happen to Abram next. In the book of Beginnings (Genesis), chapter 14: 1-16, we read the account in which the Kings of Shinar, Ellasar, Elam, and Goiim take Lot captive and confiscate his possessions. We then read the wonderful account of what took place after Abram heard that his nephew was taken captive:
“Then a fugitive came and told Abram the Hebrew. Now he was living by the oaks of Mamre the Amorite, brother of Eshcol and brother of Aner, and these were allies with Abram. And when Abram heard that his relative had been taken captive, he led out his trained men, born in his house, three hundred and eighteen, and went in pursuit as far as Dan. And he divided his forces against them by night, he and his servants, and defeated them, and pursued them as far as Hobah, which is north of Damascus. And he brought back all the goods, and also brought back his relative Lot with his possessions, and also the women, and the people.” Gen 14:13-16
(As a side note, it is important to note that in this story, Abram receives a new identity as a “Hebrew”; it is here that the term “Hebrew” is used to identify someone, and, in fact, will continue with Abram and his descendants from the same line of blessing that God promised Abram.)
Back to our story … As soon as Abram heard what happened to his nephew – the same nephew that a short while before had fought with Abram (including between their servants) and with whom tensions were very high – Abram immediately comes to his rescue. He did not hesitate to save him or to help bring back all his possessions, and the people in Lot’s family.
Abram was a strong man of God; He not only trusted God, but also had faith in God, which always translated into action. He exemplified “Faith without works is dead.”
In the next blog entry, we will study more about the way Abram’s faith in God was translated into action, and the promise he received from God as a result.
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