The two brothers who could not be more different from each other. One was a ladies’ man while the other was a lady like man. Esau was a hairy individual who loved the outdoors while Jacob was content managing the household chores. But Jacob was chosen by God to continue the lineage leading to Jesus while Esau had to be content with his bowl of soup.
Rebecca replaces Sarah as the leading lady of this story and we see God leading this family even while they are making seemingly arbitrary choices, regarding a burial site and perhaps a not so arbitrary choice in finding a life partner for Isaac.
Abraham saw a ram caught in a thicket and that ram replaced his son as the burnt offering. Just like that ram replaced Isaac on the alter, Jesus replaced all of us when he died for our transgressions. Perhaps this was the symbolic gesture that God was giving us through this example of a father sacrificing his son.
After experiencing close communion with God (Chapter 18) and seeing the destruction of the twin cities (Chapter 19), one would assume that Abraham would definitely be closer to God than ever before. But he was in fact back to his old ways. Moving to a land without God’s leading, we don’t see him building any altars or even praying to God, giving Sarah to be married to the ruler of that land by letting everyone believe they are siblings again and in the end profiting off of the ruler’s guilt, again!
God lets Abraham in on his plan to destroy the twin cities of Sodom and Gomorrah resulting in Abraham blatantly pleading for his nephew Lot. The pleading turns into negotiations with God agreeing to all of Abraham’s changes to the clauses but Abraham himself knew that his negotiations will not be able to save his nephew.
So we can finally start calling Abram as Abraham, as in this chapter, God renames Abram (exalted father) to Abraham (father of many). Seems like a cruel joke to rename a guy who is about to turn 100 and whose wife is on the verge of turning 90. But when God renames someone, it is far from a joke, but rather an assurance of the fulfillment of the promise he had made to Abram almost a quarter of a century ago.
Life lessons from Lot and pondering what could have been.
The Psalmist says in psalms 32 that “Blessed are the forgiven”. This he had written with his own personal experience. Christian life is a personal experience of God‘s mercy and love. He had differentiated his sinful unconfessed life with one of confessed and forgiven life. What a relief he had experienced.
….. there is nothing too hard for the Lord (Jer 32:17) Main reading Genesis 18: 9-15 The three mysterious visitors came to Abraham on a hot summer’s day to convey to Abraham the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah (verse 16 onwards) and that Sarah would bear Abraham a son. The reaction of Sarah was quite contrasting from…
Main Reading – Mark 12: 42-44 The reading talks about a poor widow and her humble offering of two small coins contrasting it with the rich lot boasting and casting much more into the treasury. It was a very small amount what the widow had offered but Jesus was satisfied with that because she gave that out…