And the Lord said unto Abram, after that Lot was separated from him, Lift up now thine eyes, and look from the place where thou art northward, and southward, and eastward and westward: for all the land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed for ever.
Paradise seen to promises as far as the eye can see.
Lot, the atypical carnal man, nephew of the “Friend to God” Abraham, had just received the graciousness of his uncle being given half of Abraham’s inheritance. Not, was it just half, but the half he chose was paradise; well watered ground likely green and plush as far as he could see. Lot dealt with life in the flesh; he would fit in well with our “if it feels good, do it” society of today. But then there’s Abraham, who was not perfect by any stretch of the imagination but he loved God and all along the journey you see him building altars to God, taking time and the effort to praise the Lord and acknowledge what God was doing in his life. Lot’s journey took him where the flesh lead and into a heap of trouble.
As I read this text this morning it stirred my soul when I read “after that Lot was separated from him.” Not until Abraham had separated himself from the worldliness of Lot did God begin to show Abraham what the future held. How often in life are people held back because they refuse to separate themselves from others in their lives whose carnal focus continually keeps them from receiving the blessing of God. Lot had no concern over Abraham’s success but rather his own lusts when he looked at the land that was before him and chose the best. Abraham’s concern was not only that his nephew was cared for, but that their relationship was unharmed: “for we be brethren.” (13:8)
What Lot did not know was that just beyond that beautiful land he chose was heart ache and sorrow. He would be surrounded by depravity and immoral attitudes that would turn his wife away from God ending in her destruction and corrupt his children. But the land that Abraham received, though it did not appear to be the greater acreage, had an unseen beauty. It had the blessing of God in every direction; north, south, east and west… after that Lot was separated from him.
Abraham had a tender heart for his nephew and likely would not have “separated himself” from him. I fully believe that there are times in our lives when God moves people out of our lives so that he can bless us, and for our own good we need to move forward without looking back. A lesson Lot’s wife learned too little, too late(19:26). I’m not saying that we cannot be friends with the unsaved (how else will they see God unless it’s through us); but when turmoil and strife continually abound in our lives because of the people we’re around it may be time to separate ourselves and move into God’s promises. It’s time to move on in faith that God has something wonderful in our future!
Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.