Eight generations passed through Noah’s son Shem, then Terak (his descendant) had three sons: Abram, Nakor and Haran. Haran had a son named Lot and a daughter named Milkah, then he died. Nakor married his brother Haran’s daughter Milkah and Abram married a woman named Sarai (meaning quarrelsome), who was unable to have children. Terak (a pagan who believed in many deities) moved his family from the Valley of Ur and travelled just over 1000km to Haran (on the way to the land of Canaan) where they settled, before his death at 205 years old.
IT SEEMS THAT TERACH WAS FIRST CALLED TO MOVE HIS FAMILY TO CANAAN, NOT ABRAHAM. WHEN TERACH GOT THAT CALL THEY WERE LIVING IN THE CITY OF UR OF THE CHALDEES, A VERY WICKED PLACE AND CULTURAL CENTER FOR THE WORSHIP OF THE MOON-DEITY (TODAY KNOWN AS ALLAH). SO TERACH DID LEAVE UR, BUT INSTEAD OF HEADING SOUTHWEST TO CANAAN, HE WENT NORTHWEST TO MESOPOTAMIA AND DECIDED TO STAY !
Then, after many generations had disregarded the Creator, YAHUAH came and spoke to Abram: “I want you to move away from this land of your father’s house and I’ll show you a better place, for I'M GOING TO BLESS YOU INCREDIBLY, MAKE YOU A MIGHTY NATION OF PEOPLE AND YOUR NAME WILL BE FAMOUS. I will put My protection around you, showing favor to those who treat you kindly and punishing those who curse you, for through you My son, all the nations of the earth will prosper and multiply”.
SINCE TERACH APPARENTLY WENT PART WAY AND THEN DECIDED AGAINST FOLLOWING YAHUAH ANY FURTHER, YAHUAH USED SOMEBODY WHO WOULD GO THE WHOLE DISTANCE…. ABRAHAM. PARTIAL OBEDIENCE ISN’T A LITTLE OBEDIENCE…… IT’S DISOBEDIENCE. AND, SO WE SEE YAHUAH AGAIN DIVIDING, ELECTING, AND SEPARATING.
So at 75 years of age, Abram gathered his household and flocks and possessions ...
... and (by belief) left as YAHUAH instructed, taking his nephew Lot (and his family) also. Arriving in the land of Canaan, Abram settled in Sheckem (`STRENGTH’) at the time when the Canaanites were still in the land, and YAHUAH appeared to Abram, saying, “I’m giving all this land to you and your descendants” and Abram was so moved with gratefulness and awe of YAHUAH’S promises that he pitched their tents there and built a small platform out of stones (altar), calling on the Name of YAHUAH and sacrificing animals in His mighty Name.
Abram moved further south to Bethal and built a stone-table to honor YAHUAH, but when a famine came in all the land, Abram became afraid and (instead of trusting in YAHUAH’s promise) travelled down to Egypt (THE WICKED DESCENDANTS OF HAM) where there was more food.
But as they approached Egypt he said to his wife Sarai, “You are absolutely gorgeous to look at my darling and when the Egyptians see your beauty and find out you’re my wife they will kill me just to have you for themselves. We must tell them you’re my sister, for our safety”.
And when the Egyptians saw how attractive Sarai was they praised her for her beauty, bringing her before the Pharaoh, who took her into his house as a slave, treating both her and Abram 'her brother' very well, giving him sheep and cattle and camels. But YAHUAH knew the intentions of the Pharaoh’s heart regarding Sarai and began sending plagues of sickness to everyone in his home. When the Pharaoh realised who Sarai really was he called Abram to him saying, “WHY ON EARTH DID YOU TELL ME SHE’S YOUR SISTER? NOW EVERYONE’S SICK BECAUSE OF YOU! ...
I was going to take her as my wife, but not anymore! Take your woman and get out of here immediately”.
And they escorted Abram, Sarai and all their livestock and possessions out of Egypt. And Abram returned to the place near Bethal, in Canaan where he had first settled (and had built the stone altar) and there he lived with all his household and an abundance of wealth; silver, gold and livestock. And his possessions (and people) equalled many of the Kings in the surrounding cities. And he honored and feared the Name of YAHUAH.
Lot (Abraham's Nephew) had family and herds living among Abraham, but as the families and wealth and livestock increased they all became very cramped for space and the land couldn’t support them all.
And YAHUAH spoke to Abram saying “Check out all that land as far as your eyes can see Abram; north, south, east and west, all of it I’m giving to you and your descendants forever. They shall be as many as the dust of the earth, uncountable in numbers. Now rise up and take hold of your inheritance. Go investigate and check it all out son”.
So Abram did as YAHUAH told him and dwelt by the huge terebinth oak trees of Mamre, in Hebron, building another stone-table (altar) to celebrate YAHUAH’S promise.
So Abram spoke to his nephew Lot, saying “You know I love you mate, but this just ain’t working. We’re all `living in each other’s pockets’ and there’s no space to move around here. All the servants and herdsman are at each other’s throats, and the feeling isn’t very good in the camps right now. Let’s not become enemies, let’s separate our families my brother, there’s plenty of land further out, so you go one way and I’ll go the other, deal?”
And Lot looked to the east, towards Sodom and Gomorrah and saw that the land was lush and well watered, (similar to the Garden in Eden), and he moved all his family and herds and possessions from Abram’s family (who stayed in Canaan), to the cities and plains near Sodom, where the people were known for their inhospitable cruelty and depraved, sexual acts of evil (in every possible way) in YAHUAH’S face.
ABRAM & LOT SEPARATE
NOW, WHERE EXACTLY WAS ABRAM STANDING WHEN HE WAS TO LOOK AROUND.....IN EVERY COMPASS DIRECTION.....AND ALL THAT WAS TO BELONG TO HIS DESCENDANTS? THE GENESIS APOCRYPHON PLACES HIM ON RAMATH-HAZOR, WHICH IS ABOUT 5 MILES NORTH-EAST OF BETHEL. IT IS THE HIGHEST SPOT IN CENTRAL ISRAEL, WITH AN ALTITUDE OF ALMOST 3300 FEET. FROM THIS SPOT, EVEN TODAY, ONE CAN SEE THE MEDITERRANEAN SEA TO THE WEST, AND EAST, WELL INTO THE KINGDOM OF JORDAN.
NOW ABRAM WAS TO WALK THE LENGTH AND BREADTH OF THE LAND, BECAUSE YAHUAH GAVE IT TO HIM. WHAT EXACTLY DOES THAT MEAN? WAS HE LITERALLY TO STOP WHAT HE WAS DOING, AND VISIT EVERY AREA OF THE LAND? OR WAS THIS JUST SYMBOLIC OF SOMETHING, OR A HEBREW EXPRESSION OR SOMETHING? EARLY WRITINGS STATE THAT WHAT WAS HAPPENING WAS THAT ABRAHAM WAS DOING CHAZAKAH (A WIDESPREAD LEGAL CUSTOM OF THAT ERA) AND WELL BEFORE, AND USED THROUGHOUT THE VARIOUS TRIBES AND PEOPLES OF THE MIDDLE EAST. IT WAS KNOWN BY THE EGYPTIANS AS WELL AS THE HITTITES, AND ATTESTED TO IN THEIR ANCIENT DOCUMENTS. AND, THE CONCEPT WAS THAT WHEN A PIECE OF PROPERTY WAS ACQUIRED, THE NEW OWNER HAD TO WALK THE PERIMETER OF THE ENTIRE PROPERTY, WHICH WAS SYMBOLIC OF MARKING HIS TERRITORY. NOT UNTIL THE NEW OWNER HAD DONE THIS WAS THE TRANSFER COMPLETE. SOME CULTURES EVEN REQUIRED THE KING OR RULER TO WALK THE PERIMETER OF HIS KINGDOM, FROM TIME-TO-TIME TO RE-ESTABLISH HIS SOVEREIGNTY OVER THAT TERRITORY.
NOW, WHY WOULD YAHUAH MAKE ABRAHAM DO THIS? FOR ABRAHAM’S SAKE, AND FOR THE SAKE OF THE MANY WHO LIKELY ASKED: “WHY ARE YOU DOING THIS LEGAL CUSTOM?” I HAVE NO DOUBT THAT ABRAHAM DID NOT MAKE FRIENDS AS A RESULT OF THIS PROCEDURE. FOR, WITHIN THE OUTLINE OF THE TERRITORY HE MARKED WERE MANY ALREADY ESTABLISHED KINGDOMS AND CITY-STATES, AND I SUSPECT THEY WERE NONE TOO PLEASED BY THIS FOREIGNER’S SYMBOLIC DECLARATION OF HIS OWNERSHIP OF THEIR LAND.
BUT, THERE IS ANOTHER REASON AS WELL: WE’RE GOING TO SEE ALL THROUGHOUT THE TORAH, THE REMAINDER OF THE OLD-COVENANT WRITINGS AND THE ENTIRE SCRIPTURE IN GENERAL, THAT WHERE MAN-MADE GOVERNMENTAL SYSTEMS EXIST, YAHUAH TENDS TO ALLOW THE PEOPLE INVOLVED TO USE THE LAWS, ORDINANCES AND CUSTOMS OF THEIR SYSTEM WHEN TRANSACTIONS BETWEEN YAHUAH AND MEN OCCUR. ABRAHAM WOULD HAVE BEEN COMPLETELY FAMILIAR AND COMFORTABLE WITH YAHUAH TELLING HIM TO GO AND WALK THE LAND, BECAUSE THAT’S HOW THINGS WERE DONE, THEN. IN FACT, IT PROBABLY WOULD HAVE BEEN VERY ALARMING, AND LEFT MUCH DOUBT IN ABRAHAM, IF YAHUAH HAD NOT ORDERED IT. IT WOULD BE AS THOUGH WE WENT IN TO BUY A CAR, WE FILLED OUT ALL THE PAPERWORK, LAID A CHECK ON THE TABLE, AND THE DEALER SAID, “NO NEED FOR YOU OR I TO SIGN ANYTHING....JUST TAKE THE CAR AND GO AND WE’LL JUST TAKE EACH OTHERS WORD FOR IT.” WE WOULD BE PRETTY UNCOMFORTABLE DOING THAT......FOR ONE REASON, IT ISN’T CUSTOMARY. SAME THING HERE WITH ABRAHAM; BY LEGAL CUSTOM OF THAT DAY, WALKING THE PERIMETER OF THE LAND LEGALLY COMPLETED THE TRANSFER OF THE PROPERTY AND THEREBY LEFT BOTH PARTIES FULLY FEELING CLOSURE ON THE TRANSACTION.
THE CHAPTER ENDS WITH ABRAHAM MOVING TO HEBRON, AND BUILDING AN ALTAR THERE. BUILDING AN ALTAR WAS CUSTOMARY TO DECLARE ONE DEITY OR ANOTHER’S AUTHORITY OVER THAT TERRITORY.
BUT FOR ABRAM, IT WAS TO BE 'THE SPEAKING PLACE' ... FOR YAHUAH WOULD OFTEN SPEAK TO HIS PEOPLE AT THE PLACE WHERE BLOOD WAS SHED AND SPRINKLED IN SACRIFICE AND ADORATION.
WHERE IS THE BLOOD SPRINKLED `SPEAKING PLACE' TODAY ?