3 JUNE (PREACHED 2 JUNE 1771)
A lover of peace
‘And Abram said unto Lot, Let there be no strife, I pray thee, between me and thee, and between my herdmen and thy herdmen; for we be brethren. Is not the whole land before thee? separate thyself, I pray thee, from me: if thou wilt take the left hand, then I will go to the right; or if thou depart to the right hand, then I will go to the left.’ Genesis 13:8–9
SUGGESTED FURTHER READING: Ephesians 2:13–22
(i) his desire: Let there be no strife. He was a blessed man, a lover of peace, and to the utmost of his power a peacemaker. Happy are they to whom the Lord gives such a spirit, for peace is that to the mind which health is to the body—there is nothing can be enjoyed without it.
(ii) his argument: twofold, taken from their relation, We are brethren, and their situation, the Canaanite were in the land [verse 7]. They knew that Lot and Abraham were the servants of God, and what would they think of their religion if they observed them living in strife? Besides, it might give their enemies encouragement to fall upon them.
(iii) his proposal: he showed himself a true lover of peace. Though he was probably the person aggrieved, he makes the first offers, and though he was the elder, and superior, he gives up his right of choice to Lot and is determined to be pleased if Lot can but please himself. Too often when people talk of peace and reconciliation they are too selfish to let anything be affected. If you allow everything they have said and done to be right, and give up everything they ask, they will try to be peaceable.
FOR MEDITATION: ‘I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone—for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Saviour’ (1 Timothy 2:1–3, NIV).
‘If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men’ (Romans 12:18).
SERMON SERIES: GENESIS, NO. 25 [2/4], GENESIS 13:12–13