Abraham: Following In The Footsteps Of Faith
ABRAM'S TROUBLE WITH LOT
Intro: For Abram, everything isn't smooth sailing! After his
return to Canaan from his disastrous trip to Egypt, there
arises a conflict between himself and his nephew Lot. It was
a conflict that had serious ramifications and had to be
resolved. How this conflict was settled is the focus of the
message this evening.
Just like Abram, there are times in life when conflicts and
troubles arise. How we deal with those conflicts and troubles
reveals more about our characters than we want to admit.
Because what you are when the pressure is on is what you
Since that is true, let's take some time to look into these
verses this evening and notice some aspects of this story
that speak to our lives tonight. I want to preach for a while
on this thought, Abram's Trouble With Lot.
I. V. 5-7 A TROUBLESOME PROBLEM
A. V. 5-6 The Cause Of The Problem - Both Abram
and Lot had gained immense wealth and power.
(Note: Neither is inherently wrong as long as they are
controlled by the right spirit. When our "things"
control us, then we are headed for trouble. (Ill. Matt.
B. V. 7 The Course Of The Problem - Their problem
remained unresolved and eventually developed into
a bone of contention. Evidently, each wanted the
best grazing ground for their flocks and herds.
(Note: Trouble is always a certainty when the focus
of life is removed from the Lord Jesus Christ and
focused on self, individual right, or to the things of
this world! Ill. Heb. 12:2.)
(Note: How Abram and Lot responded to this crisis in the
family says a lot about the character of each. If you want to
know the true character of any person, just see how they
respond in a time of crisis or conflict!)
II. V. 8-9 A TENDER PROPOSAL
A. V. 8 Involved A Plea For Peace - Abram displays a
loving, gracious spirit when he deals with Lot. He
gives a two-fold reason as to why they should live in
peace. By the way, his reasons for them are still
valid for the church today!
1. They Were Brethren - They should love and
respect one another! (Note: The same is true
concerning the church - John 13:35) (Note:
Even in the best of circumstances, trouble is
always a possibility. In the church, there should
be peace, love and tenderness between the
members, but, because we are sinful humans,
trouble often arises. However, it is never right,
regardless of the reason. There is nothing so
important that it should be allowed to tear up
the work of the Lord in His church. And,
friends, He cannot bless in an atmosphere of
discord and trouble.) (Note: The best course of
action is to forgive and to forget! Matt. 18:21-22;
Luke 17:3-5; Eph. 4:32; 1 Cor. 13:4-5)
2. The Heathen Were Watching - Verse 7b tells us
that the Canaanites were living around them at
the time. This presented a dual problem in the
face of the conflict. First, it placed both Abram
and Lot in danger. If these warlike people saw an
opportunity to attack them and take their
possessions they would. Second, no doubt these
people were keenly interested in Abram's God.
They would evaluate his religion by the effect it
had on his life. (Note: The same problems
confront the church in our day! When we fight,
Satan has a heyday in the church and scatters
the flock. When we fight, the world sees our lack
of love, tenderness and forgiveness and
concludes that we are no better off then they are,
and that this "Jesus business" means nothing!)
B. V. 9 Involved A Price For Peace - Abram willingly
gave up his rights as the elder of the family. He
could have chosen first, but he yielded to Lot. He
willingly placed Lot's happiness, wishes and rights
ahead of his own. (Note: This is not something that
we see often, but it what believers are supposed to
do, Phil. 2:4; Rom. 15:1; Rom. 14:19-23. We
should never compromise the truth to please
anybody! However, there are times when we should
give in to the wishes, needs and rights of others!)
C. V. 9 Involved A Promise For Peace - How could
Abram so easily give up the best of the land to Lot?
Abram knew that his cause was safe with God! The
Lord has already promised to give him "all" the land, Gen. 12:7. (Note: When a believer's faith truly rests
in the Lord, then they can afford to hold their
possessions and their rights very loosely. After all, it
is God, not they, who look after their interests, Rom.
(Note: Abram did not get mad, bitter or puffed up when
he did not get his way. He simple did everything in his
power to work out the problem. That is the way of Christ
and the will of God!)
III. V. 10-13 A TRAGIC PLAN
A. V. 10 Lot Lived By Sight - Lot made his decision
based upon what his eyes told him. He claimed the
land that appeared best for raising flocks and herds.
He did not consult with the Lord, he just looked until
he saw what pleased him and that is what he chose.
He gratified his flesh! He did just what Eve did in the
Garden, Gen. 3:1-6. He allowed his flesh to live for
him, 1 John 2:16. Ill. The reference to Egypt. Lot
must have fallen in love with that country and chose
what he did because it reminded him of Egypt.
(Note: It is a dangerous thing to live to fulfil the
appetites and lusts of the flesh. Yet, anytime we
cease to walk by faith in the Lord God and go after
our own path, we are walking by sight.)
B. V. 11 Lot Lived For Self - Lot's choice demonstrated
a total lack of regard for the needs of Abram.
Evidently, he didn't respect Abram at all. Lot lived to
please one person and that person was Lot. He was
selfish to the core. (Note: He is a perfect description
of many in our day. Everything is about "my rights",
"my wants", "my needs", "my life", "my way", etc.
Friend, that is not a way of life that is pleasing to the
Lord. You life like that and you will always be mad at
somebody over something. You will always have
your feelings hurt about some issue or the other.
C. V. 12-13 Lot Lived In Sodom - Lot left the life of a
pilgrim behind and settled down among the sinners
of Sodom. He raised his family there. He also lost
his family and his testimony in that place, Gen. 19.
He was a "just" man, 2 Pet. 2:8. However, that is no
way for a believer to live!
(Note: Sadly, Lot's way of reacting to trouble is the way
chosen by most folks in our day. These men needed to
separate, but Lot chose the wrong path and he chose it
with the wrong attitude. His choice led him down and
cost him plenty. Abram's choice brought him blessings
Conc: If you had to be honest this evening and compare
yourself to one or the other of these men, which would
it be? Abram, who took last place so that another could
go first? Or, Lot, who grabbed all he could for himself
without regard for anyone else?
I think we could all use help in the matter of
responding to conflict and trouble. The way to receive
that help is to admit the need, seek the face of the Lord
and let Him help you.
Some here tonight have issues with other believers.
You must get that settled! God cannot bless you and
use you for His glory until that is taken care of, Matt
5:23-24. Some have problems with being self-centered.
Others may have trouble forgiving. Whatever your
need, there is help in the Lord, if you will come to Him.