Chapter by Chapter - Genesis 14

     Chapter 13 of Genesis, Abram and Lot went their separate ways, with Lot choosing to live near Sodom. As we enter Chapter 14, Lot and his family find themselves in the middle of a battleground between several kings and Abram has an interesting encounter

"At the time when Amraphel was king of Shinar, Arioch king of Ellasar, Kedorlaomer king of Elam and Tidal king of Goyim, these kings went to war against Bera king of Sodom, Birsha king of Gomorrah, Shinab king of Admah, Shemeber king of Zeboyim, and the king of Bela (that is Zoar)." - Genesis 14:1-3

     The kings of Sodom and Gomorrah fled during battle and left their cities open for the taking. The four opposing kings seized all the goods of Sodom and Gomorrah and all their food. Along with the goods and food...Lot and his family.

     Its the age old case of being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Lot and all his possessions are taken as a plunder of war. Lot chose to live near Sodom in Chapter 13 of Genesis, but look how it is written now in this chapter:

"They also carried off Abram's nephew Lot and his possessions, since he was living in Sodom." - Genesis 14:12

     Lot was no longer living near Sodom...he is now living IN Sodom. He moved his family into sin city. A man who journey so close with God now surrounds himself with sin. He lives around it day in and day out. 

     This verse makes you think, what are you surrounding yourself with? Are you living near sin, within sin like Lot? Are those around you helping you build a relationship with God or are they slowly pulling you away? A large tree is not simply cut down with one stroke of an axe. The axe slowly chips away, little by little, until such a gapping hole has been created that the sturdy tree crashes down. Sin acts the same way. Ally yourself with good people around you like Abram did. Your walk with God is much easier when you have others building you up and supporting you when you are falling. By surrounding yourself with good moral people, that tree becomes watered, protected at the base, and supported by lumber so that no storm could ever push it down. So ask yourself, are you surrounded by support and nurtured by the water, or are you being chopped down by the axe?

     The bible goes on to say that a man escaped capture and sought out Abram. When this man reached Abram and told of Lot's capture, Abram and 318 trained men took pursuit and rescued all the people of the city. 

     This is the part of the chapter that gets interesting because we are introduced to the king of Salem. Read the scripture above (verses 1-3) and you'll notice that king of Salem was not mentioned in this battle. Bera king of Sodom was mentioned in that list and he approaches Abram, which is to be expected because Abram rescued his people and possessions. But who is Melchizedek, the king of Salem and why did he come to meet Abram? Take note at the gifts he brings and what he says:

"Then Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine. He was priest of God Most High, and he blessed Abram, saying, 'Blessed be Abram by God Most High, Creator of heaven and earth, And praise be to God Most High, who delivered your enemies into your hand." - Genesis 14:18-20

     This man brings bread and wine and is the priest of God Most High. Who does that make you think of? When I think of bread and wine, I think of the bread that represents the body and wine that represents the blood. This man is the king of Salem, which latter becomes Jerusalem. The latin word for priest is "bridge builder". This man is the priest, the bridge builder to the God Most High. One who connects people to God. This is also the first priest mentioned in the bible. His name, Melchizedek, means king of righteousness. Melchizedek is also the only person in the bible that served as both king and priest, except for one other man...Jesus. There is a possibility that this man was Jesus! 

     This could explain why Abram gives Melchizedek a tenth of everything he owns. Abram had a direct line with God. He spoke with God and walked with His angels, even Jesus himself. So the fact that Abram gives Melchizedek his tithes and offerings should be another sign that this man is Jesus. Interesting as well, the word Tithe means tenth.

     Now the king of Sodom tells Abram that he can keep all the worldly goods in return for the people.  In the app I use (Through the Word), the pastor states: "The king of Sodom is a picture of Satan" and that when the king of Sodom says in return I want the persons (the people), that "another word for persons is souls." Do you see what is happening here? Sodom wants the people (souls) and is offering Abram all the worldly possessions for it. So this meeting between Abram and the two kings could have possibly been an encounter between him, Jesus, and Satan. A further clue is how Abram reacts to both. With Melchizedek, he gives this king a tenth of everything he owns. With the king of Sodom, he says:

"But Abram said to the king of Sodom, 'With raised hand I have sworn an oath to the LORD, God Most High, Creator of heaven and earth, that I will accept nothing belonging to you, not even a thread or the strap of a sandal, so that you will never be able to say, 'I made Abram rich.'" - Genesis 14:22-23

     Was Abram confronted by Jesus and Satan? Its very possible! Abram's heart treasured what he gave to Melchizedek, a tenth of his possessions, his tithe, which in turn made it easy for him to deny the temptation of Satan's offer. So take a deep look at yourself today and ask yourself these two questions. Who are you surrounding yourself with and who's side does your heart find treasure in?

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Ken is a blogger at Christian Pals Blog. He enjoys anything creative and playing golf.
Proud father, husband, and servant of God.

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  1. Since I get the entire blog in my email, I never understood how to comment. There were no other comments or anything. I'd already subscribed, obviously, so I didn't think to click any place "above". Ah!! Now I see... Ken, your Genesis Chapter 14 is deep and insightful! Very good work!! Keep seeking God and His wisdom..... God bless you and yours.....


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