In Genesis 12:1-3, God began a relationship with Abram, promising him that he would become a great nation, that he would be blessed, and that all nations would be blessed through him and his descendants; but the relationship is not … But he has entire faith in the reasonableness of what God proposes. Only the dispensation, as a testing of Israel, ended at the giving of the law. The focus of God"s command was that Abram should uproot himself and follow His leading. This call Abram obeyed, still not knowing whither he was going, but trusting implicitly to the Divine guidance.". We see many persons zealous for a short time, who afterwards become frozen; whence is this, but because they build without a foundation? The closest earthly ties were to be broken. Promises to Abram - Now the Lord had said to Abram: “Get out of your country, From your family And from your father’s house, To a land that I will show you. Here it is the name of a person, the owner of this place, where afterward is built the town called at first Shekem, then Flavia Neapolis, and now Nablous. God’s kingdom must be taken by violence. It introduces an independent circumstantial clause (cf. Abram (later, Abraham) is introduced as one that God had special dealings with, much as He did with Noah. That an absurd division of these chapters may not trouble the readers, let them connect this sentence with the last two verses of the previous chapter. His country was become idolatrous, his kindred and his father's house were a constant temptation to him, and he could not continue with them without danger of being infected by them; therefore get thee out, (Heb.) Eundum quocunque Deus vocarit, saith another, etiamsi in ea loca migrandum esset -. 1Now Yahweh said to Abram, “Get out of your country, and from your relatives, and from your father’s house, to the land that I will show you. A land that I will shew thee.—In Genesis 11:31 it is expressly said that the land was Canaan, but possibly this knowledge was concealed from the patriarch himself for a time, and neither he nor Terah knew on leaving Ur what their final destination would be. Abram had left his country and his kindred upon migrating to Haran. Once this act was accomplished, however, and Abram did obey God, God instituted an irrevocable, [Note: Pentecost, p60. The faith of humble Christians understands this better than the fancy of the most learned men. Three ties are to be severed in complying with this command - his country, in the widest range of his affections; his place of birth and kindred comes closer to his heart; his father's house is the inmost circle of all his tender emotions. Dr. Hales, in his Chronology, contends for two calls: "The first," says he, "is omitted in the Old Testament, but is particularly recorded in the New, Acts 7:2-4; : The God of glory appeared to our father Abraham while he was (at Ur of the Chaldees) in Mesopotamia, Before He Dwelt In Canaan; and said unto him, Depart from thy land, and from thy kindred, and come into the land (γην, a land) which I will show thee. 1. Nor is that to be overlooked which God afterwards repeats, (Genesis 15:7,) ‘I am the Lord that brought thee out of Ur of the Chaldees;’ for we thence infer, that the Divine Hand was not for the first time stretched out to him after he had dwelt in Charran, but while he yet remained at home in Chaldea. , "and the Lord said unto Abram"; after the death of Terah, who died in Haran; and indeed it is highly probable there were two appearances of God to Abram, and that the same words, or very near the same, were spoken to him at two several times, first in Ur of the Chaldees, and then in Haran: get thee out of thy country; the land of Chaldea, and the city of Ur, which was in it, or out of Mesopotamia, in which, when taken in a large sense, were both Ur and Haran; and this country was now become idolatrous, for though it was first inhabited and peopled by the posterity of Shem in the time of Arphaxad, yet these, in process of time, degenerated from the true religion, and fell into idolatry. He leaves his kindred, Nachor and his other relations, except Sarai and Lot, who go with him unto Chanaan; and even his own house, or many of his domestics and effects, and full of faith, goes in quest of an unknown habitation, Hebrews xi. Now the Lord had said unto Abram—It pleased God, who has often been found of them who sought Him not, to reveal Himself to Abraham perhaps by a miracle; and the conversion of Abraham is one of the most remarkable in Bible history. As it concerns the subject now in hand, we infer, from the result which at length followed, that God’s design was very different from what these men suppose. (Genesis 12:1) Abraham’s call began with God speaking to him. And the promise not only meant that all families of the earth would wish for the blessing which Abram possessed, but that they would really receive this blessing in Abram and his seed. 5 From these n the … If so, the command certainly came to Abram at Ur, though most of the versions suppose that it happened at Haran. Genesis 12:1 Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will shew thee: Genesis 12:2 And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing: Genesis 12:3 And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: … And so to a wonderful degree it was; marking that Jewish people, amongst all their sins and rebellions, with such a peculiar strength and nobleness of character; and coming out in all its glory, in successive generations, in judge and seer and prophet and king, as they at all realised the pattern of their great progenitor, and walked the earth as strangers and pilgrims, but walked it with God, the God of Abraham and their God. This is a hard saying to flesh and blood; for, Nescio qua natale solum,& c. But hard or not hard, it must be done, because God bids it; and difficulty, in such a case, doth but whet on heroic spirits, making them the more eager and resolute. Note four particulars in this divine call. 2 I will make of you a great nation. The point here, which has often been misunderstood, is that, John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible, Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible, Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible, Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments, George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary, Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged, Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers, Eschatology of the Old Testament (with Apocryphal and Apocalyptic Writings). These form the subject of the present Chapter. 3) His father’s house, the family of Terah, whom he left in Haran. Some think Haran was in Chaldea, and so was still a part of Abram's country; or he having staid there five years, began to call it his country, and to take root there, till God let him know this was not the place he was intended for. But it is not necessary to suppose the writer here refers to a second call, which Abram received in Haran. No, but only against corrupt nature, which must be denied, and mortified, or there is no heaven to be had. The Substance of God’s call to Abraham.—(a) He was called from rest to pilgrimage.—From his country and kindred and father’s house, to undertake lifelong journeying. [Matthew 10:37]. God called Abram to leave his homeland and to proceed to a different country. It is no part of the design of Scripture to trace the development of worldliness. God plagues him because of Sarai, Genesis 12:17. Once this act was accomplished, however, and Abram did obey God, God instituted an irrevocable, unconditional program." "The Lord said unto Abram." The same Maimonides (w) calls Zabaeans, in whose faith and religion, he says, Abram was brought up, and who asserted there was no other God but the sun, moon, and stars; and these Zabaeans, as he relates from their books and annals, say of Abram themselves, that he was educated in Cuthia, and dissented from the common people; and asserted, that besides the sun, there was another Creator; to whom they objected, and so disputes arose among them on this subject: now Abram being convinced of idolatry, is called out from those people, and to have no fellowship with them; it is literally in the Hebrew text (x), "go to thee out of thy country"; for thy profit and good, as Jarchi interprets it; as it must be to quit all society with such an idolatrous and superstitious people: and from thy kindred; as Nahor his brother, and his family, who are not mentioned, and seem to be left behind when Terah, Abram, Lot, and Sarai, came out of Ur of the Chaldees; though it looks as if afterwards Nahor did follow them to Haran or Padanaram, which are the same, and where he continued, and therefore is called his city; see Genesis 24:10 so with great propriety Abram might be called a second time to leave his kindred as well as his country; and certain it is, Haran, or Padanaram, as well as Ur of the Chaldees, is called by himself his country, and Nahor and his family his kindred, Genesis 24:4. and from thy father's house; or household, his family, which better agrees with the second call at Haran, than with the first at Ur; for, upon the first call, Terah and his family came along with Abram, and therefore this phrase is omitted by Stephen, who speaks of that call, Acts 7:3 but Terah dying at Haran, his house or family went no further, but continued there with Nahor; only Abram and Lot, upon this second call, went from thence, as the following history makes it appear; and so Abram left, as he was bid, his father's house and family to go, as it follows: unto a land that I will show thee; meaning the land of Canaan, though not mentioned, and seems to be omitted for the trial of Abram's faith; hence the author of the epistle to the Hebrews, Hebrews 11:8 observes, that "he obeyed and went out, not knowing whither he went"; and yet it is said, that, when he and Terah came out of Ur of the Chaldees, "they went forth to go into the land of Canaan", Genesis 11:31 and, when he and Lot went first from Haran, the same is said of them, Genesis 12:5 it is probable the case was this; there was no mention made at first what land he was to go to, and when he prepared for his journey he knew not where he was to go, but afterwards it was revealed to him that Canaan was the land, and therefore set out in order to go thither; and still, though he might know the place by name where he was to go, he might neither know the way to it, nor what sort of country it was for quality or quantity; and therefore God promises to show him the way, and direct his course right unto it, and give him a view of it, that he might see what sort of a country, and how large it was, that he would give to his posterity. 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