Day 3 we are in Genesis 10-15
This starts out with a few different genealogies all leading up to Abram and where people are in his time. It follows the lines of Noah’s three sons for quite a few generations until Genesis focuses in on the sons of Shem (Noah’s second-born). There are no “…and then he died.” statements until the very end of Shem’s genealogy where Abram’s father is mentioned.
The people are scattered all across the earth to populate it. They tried to settle down and avoid that scattering once while building the Tower of Babel, but God saw their work and decided He’d had enough of all these humans working together to disobey Him. So He came down and confused their language so that no one could understand anyone else and they had to scatter as they’d originally been told to do after the flood.
At the end of all that Abram’s father Terah is moving his nephew, son and daughter-in-law to Canaan. He gets distracted in Haran and end’s up staying there. God then calls Abram to pack up his household and move to the land that God is going to show him. At this point if I was Sarah I would be saying, “you want me to pack and do what?” Either God was a lot more active physically in people’s lives back then than He is now or they had insane faith. Because we would be wondering where a cheap therapist was if our spouse came home saying they heard God tell them that He wanted them to pack up and move to some unknown land. As it turns out this land is Canaan, makes you wonder if Terah heard God too but instead of walking with God he stopped in Haran…and then he died. When Abram arrives in Canaan there is a famine going on so he heads down to Egypt. This is where things get strange.
What we know about Sarah so for, beyond being barren and Abram’s wife, she is also his half-sister. They are almost to Egypt when Abram brings this up again, telling her not to tell the Egyptians that she is his wife. Because she is so beautiful he is afraid they will kill him to get to her. Sure enough when they arrive in Egypt the Pharaoh’s officials see her and commend her beauty to him. Sarah is brought into his house and Abram gets really, really rich because of this. However, God curses Pharaoh’s household with diseases because he has taken Sarah, the truth finally comes out. Sarah is given back to Abram and they are thrown out of the country with all of their possessions. This is another time, if I were Sarah, I would be saying, “Are you crazy?” This one had nothing to do with faith, just how much it would not be ok with any wife today if her husband tried to protect his own life by putting her in danger and giving her to another man to do with as he pleases (at least in the United States maybe other cultures differ on this point).
They travel back to Canaan where Abram speaks with God again. It is now that God establishes his covenant with Abram telling him the plans he has to make him a great nation so that the whole world can be blessed through him. While Abram had been doing really well in the faith department up to this point. Now he has some real human concerns. How was he going to make a great nation when Sarah was barren and his house was going to pass to his servant? The point was, Abram wasn’t going to do anything! God was going to work in their lives so that Sarah could have a child. Because Abram showed such unbelief this time, God told him that He was still going to do what He had promised but that Abram’s descendants would spend 400 years as slaves to their enemy. God would then punish that nation and deliver them.
After this Sarah gets impatient to and comes up with another crazy idea. Since Abram can’t have a child through her she gives him her handmaid, Hagar. This can only lead to trouble…
- image is from here