Our text today begins with classic money issues. Abe and Lot are dealing with conflicts between their shepherds (similar conflicts happen in the next genereation.) The land did not have enough resources to feed the vast wealth that Abe and Lot were accumulating, especially since they wern't the only ones using the land.
This tale sent me on a word study. I spent some time looking at the meaning of the names and places mentioned in the text. I will spare you most of the journey but if you want to check every word without a vast knowledge of Hebrew you won't want to miss sites like Studylight.org.
Abe (father of many) comes up from the Negev (the South) from Egypt.
Note: Join us Sunday at Story Point Community Church at 17 S Rainier at 10 AM, we will be digging deep into the definition of Egypt. Or, check out that message online on this site, the video will be posted on Monday.
Abe and Lot agree to seperate and Lot looks and chooses East.
God then tells Abe to look in every direction and that all of it is promised to Abe's family.
North (The Hidden), South (The Negev), East (The Sea) , West (The start, or Ancient)
But then the area Lot moved to is thrown into a clash of kings! (King in Hebrew is Melech)
WAR...huh...good God, y'all...
Arioch (Lion-like) king of Ellasar (God is Chastener)
Kedorlaomer king of Elam (Eternity)
Tidal (Great Son) king of Goyim (bodies)
...these kings went to war against...
Bera (Son of Evil) king of Sodom (Scourched, burnt or burning)
Birsha (with iniquity) king of Gomorrah (ruined heap)
Shinab (Father's Splender) king of Admah (red earth)
Shemeber (lofty flight) king of Zeboyim (gazzelles)
and the king of Bela (distruction) (that is, Zoar [insignificant])
Lot's land is defeated and he is taken captive. Abe and his buddies race to the rescue.
Abe...faces all of these kings, none of which would likely have been too friendly with Abe...he has to deal with the evil kings of iniquity that come from the devestated scourched lands. He has to deal with the Kings of enternities and boddies, not to mention the very powerful and fear inducing Sayer of Darkness!
Abe pulls it off, he rescues Lot...on his return, he mets another king, the King of Salem (peace, later Jerusalem.) This king was there the whole time but managed to avoid the conflict, not only does he rule over the place of peace but his name is Melchizedek can you see the Hebrew word for king in there?
Melech + Tsadek = King of Righteousnnes.
Bonus Challenge: Do your own name search. Consider asking yourself if there was another name that had been changed in this passage. Have you ever noticed how often our English translations seem to switch between LORD (all caps) and Lord (lowercase "ord") in our bibles? Hint: LORD all caps is not a title, it's a name.