Lot strove with Abram

God had called Abram. Lot merely went along for the ride. Yet even as a passenger, Lot gleaned many of the rewards of being under Abram's wing. Nonetheless, the two men represented divergent world views that paved the way for conflict between their descendants. The call of God was like a sword, defining the two men and distinguishing Abram. It was another contradiction that set a pattern for God's dealings with people, for He uses our apparent contradictions and dilemmas to clarify His own values, ways and purposes - He never sets out to destroy, but uses our life experiences to establish us and equip us for our future inheritance. However, the way any two people respond to God's working in their lives can lead them down divergent paths and turn family or friends into long term enemies, because the path chosen by one will always provoke the other.

The contradictions between the two men came to a head when they contended for common pasture. This led to division and consequently the two needed to decide where to live. Abram had enough confidence in God's calling and favor to let his foolhardy relative choose the best of the land together with the riches and prosperity of a worldly culture. Even then Abram realized that things are never quite as they seem, whilst things that many despise often lead to the rich rewards of God. Thus it happened that eventually Abram had to rescue Lot when envious neighbors contended for the same prize. He subsequently also rescued Lot from the corruption and decadence that prosperity brought. Eventually, Abram's descendants annexed all the land that Lot had claimed, but the land of promise was blessed and transferred to Abram and His descendants as a perpetual heritage. Abram's advantage lay in the certainty of God's favor and the call over his life - it enabled him to make astute, log-term decisions and bide his time until God realized a far better outcome in his life.

The life and times of Abraham (c) P Eleazar,

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