Text verses: Genesis 13:14-18
Abram and Lot have now separated as to where they live. Lot chose the well-watered plains of Jordan, where the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah were located, very wicked cities. But Abram had moved to the plain of Mamre, which was in Hebron.
Years before, God had commanded Abram to separate from his country and kindred and from his father’s house (Genesis 12:1). This complete separation finally happened when he and Lot had to separate their cattle and people, for the land could not sustain both families, and because of strife between Abram and Lot and their people.
Note Genesis 13:14a, “And the LORD said unto Abram, after that Lot was separated from him…” Then God said to Abram:
“Lift up now (now that you have finally obeyed My Command) thine eyes, and look from the place where thou art northward, and southward, and eastward, and westward. (15) For all the land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed for ever.” (Genesis 13:14b-15)
God had made this Promise twice before now. The first time was in Genesis 12:1c, 2-3, in the Ur of the Chaldees. The second time was in Genesis 12:7, when Abram entered into Canaan the first time. Now, God fulfilled His Promise to Abram (Genesis 13:15-17) and confirmed it (verse 18):
“Then Abram removed his tent, and came and dwelt in the plain of Mamre, which is in Hebron, and built there an altar unto the LORD.”
God had promised to give Abram a physical land. But later in the study of Genesis and in Hebrews 11:8-17, it is revealed that this physical land wherein Abram dwelt was a type of a spiritual land; the City of God; a better country, a heavenly country; even the House of God, Christ’s Body, the Church, His Bride, New Jerusalem, the Holy City (see Hebrews 11:10-16).
In a quick study of Romans 9:6 and Galatians 3:1-29, the truth is made plain that the Covenant of Abram was to “seed” (singular), not “seeds” plural – pointing directly to Jesus Christ (Galatians 3:16). The Promise, or the Inheritance promised to Abram, was to Christ. Galatians 3:17-18 says:
“And this I say, that the covenant, that was confirmed before of God in Christ… (18) For if the inheritance be of the law, it is no more of promise: but God gave it to Abraham by promise.”
Please read Galatians 3:19-29, especially verse 22:
“But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them (who are them?) that believe.”
See Romans 9:8, Paul is speaking of the Children of Promise; which are a spiritual seed; who are identified by having faith, the same kind of faith Abraham possessed, that Faith is Christ Himself.
“That is, They which are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God: but the children of the promise are counted for the seed.” (Romans 9:8)
Read Romans 9:6-24, especially verses 23-24, which prove Paul is speaking of God’s Elect, both Jew and Gentile.
Just because Ishmael and Isaac had Abram as their father, that did not make them Children of Promise. For it was only with Isaac that the Covenant was established, and not with Ishmael.
Abraham’s “children” then are the Children of Faith, the Elect of God, both Jew and Gentile. See also Galatians 3:25-29, especially verse 27:
“For as many of you (both Jew and Gentile) as have been baptized into Christ (not water baptized, but Spirit baptized; Matthew 3:11; 1 Corinthians 12:13-14) have put on Christ.”
And see Galatians 3:14:
“That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.”
The “blessing of Abraham” refers to the Promise, or the Inheritance of Abraham. The “promise of the Spirit” is speaking of regeneration, conversion, being born of God; “through faith.” That is, through Christ, who is The Faith (Galatians 2:20). See Romans 3:24-25; 5:1-21; 1:4. That is, through the Atonement of Christ on the Cross to pay the sin debt for sinners.
When you study Abram’s life in Genesis, Hebrews 11, and Galatians 3:1-29; it is impossible not to see that the Physical Covenant in Genesis to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob was pointing to the Spiritual Inheritance in Jesus Christ, the First-Born.
The Blessing did not come through Abraham, but through Jesus Christ, The Seed, Himself.
But God preserved a beautiful picture through His dealings with Abraham in the Covenant Relationship of the Spiritual Eternal Covenant in Jesus Christ and for Christ’s Seed, His Elect, His Chosen Bride, the Church; made up of both Jew and Gentile, male and female, bond and free. All are one in Christ (Galatians 3:27-29) Hallelujah!
Reader, you may be a Child of God, regenerated and converted, and have confessed Him (Jesus) as your Savior by mouth (Romans 10:9-10) and by water baptism – but you are yet to separate from all. And you have yet to:
1) Surrender your all to God as your Lord and Master;
2) Submit to His Word and His Will;
3) Obey His Word; and
4) Continue to endure in His Commandment of Love.
These are a must – to be able to see and rejoice and enjoy your position in “the land”; to “Arise, walk through the land in the length of it and in the breadth of it” (Genesis 13:17a-b).
Paul confirms this in 2 Corinthians 6:14-18; notice first separation (verse 17):
“Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,”
And then upon separation, the results (verse 18):
“And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.”
Then read 2 Corinthians 7:1:
“Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us (saved people) cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.”
This is exactly what God taught Abram in Genesis 13; separate, do as I have commanded you, and then I will bless you in the Land, I will show you the Boundaries of the Land, the Beauty of the Land, and the Security of the Land – for it is yours and your seed’s (the spiritual seed, the Children of Promise, or of Faith), forever and ever and ever! Hallelujah!