Genesis 13:14 And the LORD said unto Abram, after that Lot was separated from him, Lift up now 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.

16 And I will make thy seed as the dust of the earth: so that if a man can number the dust of the earth, then shall thy seed also be numbered.

17 Arise, walk through the land in the length of it and in the breadth of it; for I will give it unto thee.

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.

Genesis 15:1 After these things the word of the LORD came unto Abram in a vision, saying, Fear not, Abram: I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward.

6 And he believed in the LORD; and he counted it to him for righteousness.

18 In the same day the LORD made a covenant with Abram, saying, Unto thy seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates.

Genesis 17:1 And when Abram was ninety years old and nine, the LORD appeared to Abram, and said to him, I am the Almighty God; walk before me, and be thou perfect.

2 And I will make my covenant between me and thee, and will multiply thee exceedingly.

3 And Abram fell on his face: and God talked with him, saying,

4 As for me, behold, my covenant is with thee, and thou shalt be a father of many nations.

Genesis 18:17 And the LORD said, Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do;

18 Seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him?

19 For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the LORD, to do justice and judgment; that the LORD may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him.

Genesis 26:5 Because that Abraham obeyed my voice, and kept my charge, my commandments, my statutes, and my laws.


MEMORY VERSE: And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God. —James 2:23


CENTRAL THOUGHT: As Abram continued to follow God and worship Him, God gave him all the land of Canaan, made a covenant with him, revealed to him His plans to destroy Sodom, and fulfilled His promise to him of a son and heir.




Genesis 13:18 “In the plain of Mamre”: by the oak of Mamre. Mamre was an Amorite with whom Abram made a league (Genesis 14:13) when he rescued Lot from captivity.

Genesis 15:6 “Abram believed in the Lord”: or, Abram leaned on the Lord. “The metaphor in the Hebrew word is that of a man leaning all his weight on some strong stay” (MacLaren’s Expositions).

Genesis 15:18 “Made a covenant”: cut a covenant (Hebrew). “…Or rather the covenant sacrifice; for as no covenant was made without one, and the creature was cut in two that the contracting parties might pass between the pieces, hence cutting the covenant signified making the covenant” (Clarke’s Commentary). “The covenant is not only God’s binding Himself anew by solemn acts to fulfil His promises already made, but it is His entering into a far sweeter and nearer alliance with Abram than even He had hitherto had. That name, ‘the friend of God,’ by which he is still known over all the Mohammedan world, contains the very essence of the covenant” (MacLaren’s Expositions).



Continuing from the last lesson, which ended with Abram going south, we find that he actually visited Egypt to find relief from a famine in Canaan. There Abram feared the Pharaoh would notice Sarai’s personal beauty and desire her, so he, in fear for his own life, identified her as his sister. Pharaoh did take her to his house, but God intervened and plagued Pharaoh, and he restored her back to Abraham.

Genesis 13 is the story of the separation between Abram and his nephew Lot because of strife between their herdsmen over the land. Abram felt a peaceful resolution would be to give Lot his choice of the land, while Abram took what was left. After Lot rather selfishly chose the well-watered plain of Jordan, which included the wicked cities, God visited Abram and promised him all the land he could see in every direction. Again Abram built an altar to God.

In Genesis 14 we read of the coalition of kings who seized the cities of the plain, carrying away Lot, his family, and his possessions. Abram took 318 of his own trained servants and rescued his nephew. The last part of the chapter includes the blessing of Melchisedek, king of Salem, upon Abram, to whom Abram gave tithes of all the goods he had recovered from the battle. The king of Sodom offered the spoils to Abram to keep, but he refused.

Genesis 15 details the promise renewal to Abram and the covenant by which God ratified His promise.

Genesis 16 is the account of Sarai’s bargain with Abram to take her slave, Hagar, as his wife and establish an heir in this way. Abram agreed, and a son, Ishmael, was born when Abram was 86 years old.

In Genesis 17, thirteen years later, God again visited Abram, changing his name to Abraham, and Sarai’s to Sarah, promising that Sarah would bear a son the next year, and re-establishing His covenant. The elements of this covenant involved the rite of circumcision.

Genesis 18 gives us the story of the personal visit God made to Abraham. He again promised that Sarah would embrace a son within the year, and He made known His plan of destruction for the wicked cities of the plain. In this passage, Abraham made intercession for Sodom, pleading for mercy. God patiently dealt with Abraham, promising He would spare the city if ten righteous persons could be found there.

In the next chapter we read of God’s mercy to Lot, because He “remembered Abraham” and his earnest intercession for the people of Sodom.

Chapter 20 is the story of Abraham and Sarah’s interaction with king Abimelech, who tried to take Sarah as a wife after Abraham and Sarah had fearfully hidden their relationship as husband and wife while traveling in Abimelech’s country. God mercifully rescued Sarah and Abraham by intervening and dealing with the king in a dream.

Chapter 21 tells of the birth of Isaac and the sending away of Hagar and her son, Ishmael. This was when Abraham was 100 years old. Later, Abraham made a covenant of kindness with King Abimelech, and again built an altar and called on the Lord.

Chapter 22 is the story of God giving Abraham the supreme test by calling him to offer his son, Isaac as an offering on the altar, and God’s wonderful intervention and provision of a substitute. Chapter 23 tells of the death and burial of Sarah; chapter 24 is the account of finding a wife for Isaac, and chapter 25 tells the end of Abraham’s life at age 175.

Details from the story of Abraham are mentioned many times later in both the Old and New Testaments.

—Angela Gellenbeck



  1. Share the rest of the story from Genesis 13 about Lot and Abram.
  2. What verse from Genesis 15 is repeated several times in the New Testament?
  3. In Genesis 17:1, what did God tell Abram to do? How does that correspond with a verse from our first lesson?
  4. What was God’s testimony of Abraham in Genesis 18?
  5. What was God’s testimony of Abraham in Genesis 26?




The story of Abraham shares, among many other vital spiritual applications, the elements of the close friendship with God to which we are called by Christ. Among these are the very things Jesus outlined: first, a covenant made by God which was sealed with the shedding of blood—Abraham’s offering of a burnt offering; God’s initiation of circumcision. These point to the covenant Christ sealed with His own blood and the spiritual circumcision of the heart accomplished by God in the sending of His Spirit.

Secondly, as Abraham believed God, trusted Him and fully relied upon Him, and obeyed Him, so our part in friendship with Christ involves our implicit trust and obedience, as Jesus said.

Another application we can make is that God, as Abraham’s friend, did not hide the things He planned to do. I believe that the revelation God gives the soul is one of the sweetest parts of our friendship with Christ. In John 14:21, we read one of Jesus’ precious promises: “He that hath my commandments and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.”

As God revealed and shared, Abraham responded by earnest intercession. Likewise, when Jesus reveals His plans and purposes to us, we respond by communing with God in prayer and intercession for others.

Note also that God called Abraham to be “perfect.” We were introduced to this word in the first lesson about friendship with Christ. Its meaning to Abraham was that God wanted him to be completely submissive and open to God’s dealings. Abraham erred in judgment and grew fearful and hesitant at times, but God “found his heart faithful…and made a covenant with him” (Nehemiah 9:8), and gently but continually dealt with him in patience, calling him to deeper trust and commitment a little at a time; and so He deals with us.

—Angela Gellenbeck




I asked my wife for help getting started on this reflection concerning friendship. She looked at me, smiled, and said, “Communication.” That word has a history with us. It is not my strongest point. I didn’t receive much in-depth conversation growing up. Added to that, I am quiet, reserved, and was very shy as a child. As a result, my wife has had to dig info out of me; how I am feeling or what I am thinking. Different times she has explained, “I can’t read your mind.” Our quietness can sometimes starve the emotional needs of our spouse or family. It is very vital to recognize that we all have emotional needs that are very real and if we ignore them, we are sabotaging our relationships.

Conversation is a window to the soul. There are different levels of conversation. Many of us tend to have shallow (safe) conversation that concern things “out there.” I used to think that small talk was unimportant but now realize that conversation needs to begin somewhere and can lead to deeper and more meaningful conversation as deeper friendship is desired. The more we can open up (become vulnerable), sharing our battles, victories, losses, experiences, perceptions, and feelings, the more our loved ones and friends can know the real us.

As iron sharpeneth iron, so a man sharpens the countenance of his friend.  Our lives can be so blessed, enriched, and helped by meaningful conversation. Listen, observe, consider, speak!

—Bob Wilson