Sermons

Summary: A study in the book of Genesis 23: 1 – 20

Genesis 23: 1 – 20

Funeral arrangements

23 Sarah lived one hundred and twenty-seven years; these were the years of the life of Sarah. 2 So Sarah died in Kirjath Arba (that is, Hebron) in the land of Canaan, and Abraham came to mourn for Sarah and to weep for her. 3 Then Abraham stood up from before his dead, and spoke to the sons of Heth, saying, 4 “I am a foreigner and a visitor among you. Give me property for a burial place among you, that I may bury my dead out of my sight.” 5 And the sons of Heth answered Abraham, saying to him, 6 “Hear us, my lord: You are a mighty prince among us; bury your dead in the choicest of our burial places. None of us will withhold from you his burial place, that you may bury your dead.” 7 Then Abraham stood up and bowed himself to the people of the land, the sons of Heth. 8 And he spoke with them, saying, “If it is your wish that I bury my dead out of my sight, hear me, and meet with Ephron the son of Zohar for me, 9 that he may give me the cave of Machpelah which he has, which is at the end of his field. Let him give it to me at the full price, as property for a burial place among you.” 10 Now Ephron dwelt among the sons of Heth; and Ephron the Hittite answered Abraham in the presence of the sons of Heth, all who entered at the gate of his city, saying, 11 “No, my lord, hear me: I give you the field and the cave that is in it; I give it to you in the presence of the sons of my people. I give it to you. Bury your dead!” 12 Then Abraham bowed himself down before the people of the land; 13 and he spoke to Ephron in the hearing of the people of the land, saying, “If you will give it, please hear me. I will give you money for the field; take it from me and I will bury my dead there.” 14 And Ephron answered Abraham, saying to him, 15 “My lord, listen to me; the land is worth four hundred shekels of silver. What is that between you and me? So bury your dead.” 16 And Abraham listened to Ephron; and Abraham weighed out the silver for Ephron which he had named in the hearing of the sons of Heth, four hundred shekels of silver, currency of the merchants. 17 So the field of Ephron which was in Machpelah, which was before Mamre, the field and the cave which was in it, and all the trees that were in the field, which were within all the surrounding borders, were deeded 18 to Abraham as a possession in the presence of the sons of Heth, before all who went in at the gate of his city. 19 And after this, Abraham buried Sarah his wife in the cave of the field of Machpelah, before Mamre (that is, Hebron) in the land of Canaan. 20 So the field and the cave that is in it were deeded to Abraham by the sons of Heth as property for a burial place.

A socialist professor asked his class this question, ‘If I have $10 and you have $20 dollars how much money do I have? You might be saying to yourself, ‘Are you kidding me, the answer is simple he has $10 –WRONG! A socialist point of view is that he wants all your money, so he looks at it like he now has $30.

In today’s study we are going to learn about the death of Sarah and Abraham’s haggling of the purchase of a cave where he and her dwelt together for many years in order to use it for a family crypt.

A good line is that there are two things that we cannot escape – Death and Taxes. Even when you die these greedy crooks still want a share of your estate. Having dealt with a lot of funeral homes and cemeteries as a Pastor, I can tell you that there are big bucks in this profession. An area in which I am hand cuffed is that I can not recommend any funeral home over another. People would cry foul that I play favorites. Yet one thing I do advised a grieving family guardian is that whichever funeral homes they choose do not let them know that your love one had funeral insurance. Do you know why? They will run up the bill to milk you of every penny in the insurance plan. You will get the Cadillac of funeral home accessories.

Consumers are at a big disadvantage when conducting business in unfamiliar venues. For most of us, happily, that includes shopping for funerals. As a result, the funeral home business is rife with exploitative practices, despite fairly strict federal regulations governing the industry. In fact, a recent round of undercover visits to funeral homes by the FTC has confirmed that none of us should wait until it’s too late to learn about the business of death.

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