Faithlife Sermons

Fighting for Family

Spiritual Warfare  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
0 ratings
· 3 views

Just as Abram went on the offensive to rescue his relative, so should we to rescue ours.

Notes
Transcript
Handout
Sermon Tone Analysis
A
D
F
J
S
Emotion
A
C
T
Language
O
C
E
A
E
Social
View more →

Gen 14:14-16

Genesis 14:14–16 NASB95
14 When Abram heard that his relative had been taken captive, he led out his trained men, born in his house, three hundred and eighteen, and went in pursuit as far as Dan. 15 He divided his forces against them by night, he and his servants, and defeated them, and pursued them as far as Hobah, which is north of Damascus. 16 He brought back all the goods, and also brought back his relative Lot with his possessions, and also the women, and the people.

INTRODUCTION

He Ain’t Heavy…He’s my brother.

Those iconic words have symbolized the spirit of Boys Town for decades. But many people don’t know how it originated.
Back in 1918, a boy named Howard Loomis was abandoned by his mother at Father Flanagan’s Home for Boys, which had opened just a year earlier. Howard had polio and wore heavy leg braces. Walking was difficult for him, especially when he had to go up or down steps.
Soon, several of the Home’s older boys were carrying Howard up and down the stairs.
One day, Father Flanagan asked Reuben Granger, one of those older boys, if carrying Howard was hard.
Reuben replied, “He ain’t heavy, Father… he’s m’ brother.”
Well, this is not true all the time. The truth is:

He is Heavy Sometimes!

As we observe Abram’s nephew Lot, we see that he was more of a burden than a blessing. Maybe that’s the reason the Lord told Abram not to take him in the first place. The Lord knew what Abram did not.
see Gen 12:1
Genesis 12:1 NASB95
1 Now the Lord said to Abram, “Go forth from your country, And from your relatives And from your father’s house, To the land which I will show you;
Abram was 75 years old, and had not learned that sometimes it is for your own good that you leave relatives where they are. No doubt he had a special relationship with his dead brother, Haran’s son. The story says at Gen 12:4
Genesis 12:4 NASB95
4 So Abram went forth as the Lord had spoken to him; and Lot went with him. Now Abram was seventy-five years old when he departed from Haran.
Abram probably was saying of Lot: He ain’t heavy, he’s my brother. But what he did not know was that Lot was:

Faithless Gen13:5-11

Genesis 13:5–11 NASB95
5 Now Lot, who went with Abram, also had flocks and herds and tents. 6 And the land could not sustain them while dwelling together, for their possessions were so great that they were not able to remain together. 7 And there was strife between the herdsmen of Abram’s livestock and the herdsmen of Lot’s livestock. Now the Canaanite and the Perizzite were dwelling then in the land. 8 So Abram said to Lot, “Please let there be no strife between you and me, nor between my herdsmen and your herdsmen, for we are brothers. 9 “Is not the whole land before you? Please separate from me; if to the left, then I will go to the right; or if to the right, then I will go to the left.” 10 Lot lifted up his eyes and saw all the valley of the Jordan, that it was well watered everywhere—this was before the Lord destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah—like the garden of the Lord, like the land of Egypt as you go to Zoar. 11 So Lot chose for himself all the valley of the Jordan, and Lot journeyed eastward. Thus they separated from each other.
Wait a minute, that is not all, he also proved to be:

Fleshly See Gen 13:12

Genesis 13:12 NASB95
12 Abram settled in the land of Canaan, while Lot settled in the cities of the valley, and moved his tents as far as Sodom.
Think with me for a moment where Lot lived after the separation of he and Abram. The text says that “Lot settled in the cities of the valley.” This does not sound like he settled anywhere because “cities” means more than one. it appears he roamed to and fro, in and out of cities in plain.
Something else interesting to note in the narrative is that he moved his tent as far as Sodom. The KJV says that he pitched his tent toward Sodom. I had to know what that meant so I consulted with Paul Kissling’s article from THE COLLEGE PRESS NIV COMMENTARY on this passage and discovered :
Genesis, Volume 2 3. Abram Risks Giving Away the Promised Land to Lot, but Does Not (13:8–13)

Abram remains in the Promised Land of Canaan while the now affluent herdsman Lot moved his tents near to the city of Sodom. He is now in some sense or other a city dweller, albeit one who still lives in tents since he lives “in” or “among” (בְּ, be) the cities of the plain, near Sodom. When next we meet him, he has moved into the city of Sodom (Gen 14:12). Lot’s story would remind the original readers (and dare I say us too!) of the real dangers of becoming too comfortable in the midst of pagan culture. The influence is gradual enough as to be unnoticeable.

Also See Gen 14:12
Genesis 14:12 NASB95
12 They also took Lot, Abram’s nephew, and his possessions and departed, for he was living in Sodom.
As we read the end of Lot’s story, he was a Foolish man

Foolish See Gen 19:30-38

Genesis 19:30–38 NASB95
30 Lot went up from Zoar, and stayed in the mountains, and his two daughters with him; for he was afraid to stay in Zoar; and he stayed in a cave, he and his two daughters. 31 Then the firstborn said to the younger, “Our father is old, and there is not a man on earth to come in to us after the manner of the earth. 32 “Come, let us make our father drink wine, and let us lie with him that we may preserve our family through our father.” 33 So they made their father drink wine that night, and the firstborn went in and lay with her father; and he did not know when she lay down or when she arose. 34 On the following day, the firstborn said to the younger, “Behold, I lay last night with my father; let us make him drink wine tonight also; then you go in and lie with him, that we may preserve our family through our father.” 35 So they made their father drink wine that night also, and the younger arose and lay with him; and he did not know when she lay down or when she arose. 36 Thus both the daughters of Lot were with child by their father. 37 The firstborn bore a son, and called his name Moab; he is the father of the Moabites to this day. 38 As for the younger, she also bore a son, and called his name Ben-ammi; he is the father of the sons of Ammon to this day.

CENTRAL IDEA: He may be heavy at times, but he is still my brother.

We Are Relatives Gen 14:14

Genesis 14:14 NASB95
14 When Abram heard that his relative had been taken captive, he led out his trained men, born in his house, three hundred and eighteen, and went in pursuit as far as Dan.
The text uses the word “relative.” According to the

62a אָח (ʾāḥ) II, brother.

62b אַחֲוָה (ʾaḥăwâ) brotherhood.

62c אָחוֹת (ʾāḥôt) sister.

אָח (ʾāḥ). Brother, relative, fellow countryman, friend. From a root common to all Semitic languages, ʾāḥ occurs 630 times in the OT. Owing to its wide range of meanings and the practice of polygamy, it is sometimes necessary to describe a full brother as the son of one’s mother (Deut 13:6 [H 7]; Ps 50:20; Jud 8:19). The relationship between full brothers was extremely close, so the admonition to kill a brother who has become an idolater is severe indeed (Deut 13:6 [H 7]). Every man is expected to be his brother’s keeper (Gen 4:9). The OT is replete with stories about half-brothers, those with different mothers. Abraham was Sarah’s half-brother (Gen 20:5, 12), and his sons Ishmael and Isaac were born to Hagar and Sarah. The rivalry between Joseph and his half-brothers turned into hatred (Gen 37:2–5), and Absalom’s hatred for Amnon resulted in murder (II Sam 13:29). Even full brothers like Cain and Abel, or Jacob and Esau had similar experiences. The Levites, however, properly put loyalty to God above family solidarity when they killed their own sons and brothers guilty of idolatry (32:29).

More remote descendants from a common father are called brothers. Thus “brother” occurs together with “children of Israel” (Deut 24:7). “Brother” is used more widely of Abraham’s nephew Lot (Gen 13:8) and Laban’s nephew Jacob (Gen 29:15). Members of the same tribe are also called “brothers.” fellow-Levites (Num 16:10) or Simeonites (Num 25:6). The “relatives” of Samson among whom he should have selected a wife probably refer to his own tribe of Dan (Jud 14:3).

As we look at this bible story today, let us be mindful of the relatives who are like Lot. You have tried bring them along with you, help them land on their own two feet only to discover that they are Trifling, Tricky, and Treacherous.

Relationships Encounter Conflict

In light of what Lot did to him, when Abram heard that his relative had been taken he went into action to help him. I believe the Lord is trying to show us that relationships will encounter conflict. There has been conflicts in the family since sin entered the world.
CONFLICT, INTERPERSONAL The Bible illustrates, explains, and offers solutions for interpersonal conflict. Among the more notable instances of interpersonal conflict recorded in the Bible are the hostilities between Cain and Abel (Gen. 4:1–16), Abram and Lot (Gen. 13:8–18), Jacob and Esau (Gen. 25–27; 32–33), Jacob and Laban (Gen. 29–31), Saul and David (1 Sam. 18–31), Mary and Martha (Luke 10:38–42), Jesus’ disciples (Mark 9:33–37; Luke 22:24–27), Paul and Barnabas (Acts 15:36–41), and the Corinthian believers (1 Cor. 1:10–12; 3:2–4; 11:18).
The root cause of interpersonal conflict is sin (Gal. 5:19–20). James explains that fighting is the result of uncontrolled passions and desires (James 4:1–3). The book of Proverbs characterizes those who stir up conflict as persons given to anger (Prov. 15:18; 29:22), greed (Prov. 28:25), hate (Prov. 10:12), gossip (Prov. 16:28), and worthless perversions (Prov. 6:12–15). Such conflicts inevitably result in personal destruction (Prov. 6:15), discord (Prov. 6:14), and strife (Prov. 10:12; 16:28). It is no wonder that “the Lord hates … who stirs up trouble among brothers” (Prov. 6:16, 19 HCSB).
Has there ever been any conflict with relatives that has caused a separation?

Conflicts Don’t Negate Relationship

Even though Lot sought to defraud Abram by choosing the fertile Jordan Valley he was still family. So when Abram heard the about Lot’s capture and deportation, he sprang into action. I wonder how many of us would have done that after what he had done to Abram. I see hear another lesson that the Lord would teach us today: Conflicts do not negate relationships.
Although there was a separation there still was a family bound that could not be broken by the disagreement. it does not matter how much you cut me, you are still my brother. I may not be able to have you around me but it does not negate the fact that if a relative needs my help, I should do what I can to help them.
See Gen 14:14-16
Genesis 14:14–16 NASB95
14 When Abram heard that his relative had been taken captive, he led out his trained men, born in his house, three hundred and eighteen, and went in pursuit as far as Dan. 15 He divided his forces against them by night, he and his servants, and defeated them, and pursued them as far as Hobah, which is north of Damascus. 16 He brought back all the goods, and also brought back his relative Lot with his possessions, and also the women, and the people.

CONCLUSION

Your Brother may be heavy, because You are not strong

See Romans 15:1
Romans 15:1 NASB95
1 Now we who are strong ought to bear the weaknesses of those without strength and not just please ourselves.

ABRAM FOR LOT

JESUS FOR US

US FOR THEM

I will ask seek for the Lord’s strength to be like Abram and Jesus

The old hymn Count On Me closes with last verse saying:
I’ll bear another’s burden along a lonely way, Or teach that burden-bearer with confidence to pray; In service ever loyal, at home or far away, O blessed Savior, count on me.
Related Media
Related Sermons