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14 1-17 The Effects Of Bad Company

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                                                  liberty bible church          6/3/07 P.M.

By Tom Zobrist

“the effects of bad company”

Genesis 14:1-17


Illus. of “Charge It” A mother took her young son shopping. After a day in the stores, a clerk handed the little boy a lollipop. “What do you say?” the mother said to the boy, to which he replied, “Charge it!” Courier-Journal Sunday Magazine There’s no doubt that we are affected by those with whom we associate. Our culture has made this observation in many areas of behavior; unfortunately, they want to say it is biological rather than sociological. “Examples” Children who see physical violence between their parents are six times more likely to abuse their own spouses after they marry. If those children were also hit by their parents as teenagers, they are 12 times more likely to abuse their spouses. Homemade, November, 1985

That’s one example. In general, what are the effects of bad company and how far reaching are they?

OPEN to passage.                                       


Prop. In this passage, we see the far-reaching effects of bad company.  

Open in PRAYER.

PREVIEW the passage. Over months ago, we saw a rare stumble in the life of Abram; a crinkle in his armor of faith. Cf. 12:10-20 But, Abram learns from that lesson and in the very next account demonstrates that his faith is growing. It’s not perfect, but it is making strides. It’s in chapter 13 that he and Lot separate. Abram let’s Lot choose where he will settle. Cf. 13:11-13 That choice by Lot to choose the bad company would lead to the first effect of bad company.

 i. bad company leads to trouble vs. 1-12

Illus. of you all know that we have reinforced the teaching 1 Cor. 15:33 hundreds of times. What are these effects and how far reaching are they?

a. the effects are a result of choices  

V 1      1. Who are these guys? Archaeology sheds some light on this account. These names are very similar to Mesopotamian kings’ names that have been discovered in digs and other writings. Locations have also been discovered. Shinar later came to be known as Babylonia. Elam was east of Shinar. Ellaser and Goyim or nations; their location is not known. 

V 2      2. These five kingdoms or cities were close together at the southern end of the valley.  

V 3      3. These 9 kingdoms came together for battle in the area of the Salt Sea, the Dead Sea. Why?

b. the trouble of hurting others

V 4      1. These 5 kingdoms mentioned in verse 2 had been in subjugation to Chedorlaomer for 12 years. But, recently, they had rebelled. They probably quit paying taxes, etc. whatever had been required previously. It was not uncommon in the ancient world for more powerful nations to plunder and subjugate lesser kingdoms.

V 5      2. These 4 kings work their way south along the east side of the Jordan River. Ashteroth Karnaim was east of the Sea of Galilee. Ham was is eastern Gilead. Shaveh Kiriathaim was east of the Dead Sea.

V 6-7   3. Seir was southeast of the Dead Sea. El Paran is modern Elat on the Gulf of Aqaba. Kadesh and Tamar were southwest of the Dead Sea. None of these would have been considered to be God-fearing peoples.

V 8-9   4. The battle is on. Numbers appeared to be on their side. But the enemy was battle tested and they prevailed.

V 10    5. Some died in this valley and others headed for the mountains. Asphalt pits are tar pits, used for sealants. I.e. Noah’s ark.

c. trouble for the innocent (at least they thought they were)

V 11    1. They plundered Sodom and Gomorrah

V 12    2. Lot was also taken, along with his goods. Presumably he was taken to be a slave. Illus. of just being with the guilty makes one guilty. That’s what happened to Lot.

Trans. BAD COMPANY LEADS TO TROUBLE. Lot found this out the hard way. A second effect of bad company…

ii. bad company LEADS TO trouble for others vs. 13-16

Illus. of when parents have to bail their kids out of trouble. It’s trouble for everyone. Who does Lot make trouble for?

a. trouble travels

V 13    1. Abram and his allies hear the news from an escapee of the siege. He is called Hebrew here for the first time. May have a relationship to the name Habiru, a group of marauding soldiers. Although Abram was not one of this group, his military exploits here proved him a force that would have to be reckoned with.

V 14    2. Abram, once again, feeling responsible for his brother’s son, arms his household and heads north in pursuit. Dan was the future northernmost point of the promised land. This would have been about 140 miles north of Abram’s home. At this point…

V 15    3. He divides his forces and pursues another 100 miles north. They attacked and had a great victory over an army that had just had a great deal of success. Of course, God was blessing him, as He would His descendants in many battles over the centuries and still does today.

            4. Would Abram be involved in this had Lot not lived near Sodom? Of course not. But, Abram lead a great victory and later that victory would be attributed to God. God’s grace is seen here in…

b. trouble can lead to one more chance

V 16    1. Abram was able to deliver all the goods, literally. And the people were very grateful.

V 17    2. The king of Sodom no doubt is very grateful He had run before, but now can return. Not many kings, when defeated like this ever get another chance, but this wicked king does. It’s sad to think that he never really recognized from whom this victory came. Next time, we’ll look in detail at Abram’s witness to this king.


BAD COMPANY LEADS TO TROUBLE for those that spend time with them and BAD COMPANY LEADS TO TROUBLE FOR OTHERS as well. Those that find the trouble may have to be bailed out by those that are responsible for them. Everyone deserves a second chance. How might this apply today?

1.      Bad company can affect us all. Avoid those that do not know God nor desire to serve Him.

2.      Our battles are more spiritual than physical. Eph. 6:10-19 If we fail, God offers second chances.

3.      Rather than just avoid the bad company, strive to be good company. This puts a different emphasis on it.

Illus. of                                                “My Life”

My life shall touch a dozen lives before this day is done;
Leave countless marks for good or ill, ere sets the evening sun.
This is the wish I always wish, the prayer I always pray:
Lord, may my life help other lives it touches by the way.

May this be all of our prayers, that we not just avoid the effects of bad company, but that we will leave the effects of good company along life’s way.


                                                  liberty bible church          6/3/07 P.M.

By Tom Zobrist

“the effects of bad company”

Genesis 14:1-17


There’s no doubt that we are affected by those with whom we associate. Our culture has made this observation in many

areas of behavior; unfortunately, they want to say it is _____________________ rather than __________________.

 i. bad company leads to                                                                                                   vs. 1-12

a. the effects are a result of _______________________________ 

b. the trouble of __________________________ ______________________________

c. trouble for the ___________________________________

ii. bad company LEADS TO                                                                                                  vs. 13-16

a. trouble _______________________________

b. trouble can lead to __________________ ___________________ _______________________


How might this apply today?






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