Summary: Guidance for relationships from Lot's neglect
Genesis 13:1-13 1Then Abram went up from Egypt, he and his wife and all that he had, and Lot with him, to the South. 2Abram was very rich in livestock, in silver, and in gold. 3And he went on his journey from the South as far as Bethel, to the place where his tent had been at the beginning, between Bethel and Ai, 4to the place of the altar which he had made there at first. And there Abram called on the name of the LORD. 5Lot also, who went with Abram, had flocks and herds and tents. 6Now the land was not able to support them, that they might dwell together, for their possessions were so great that they could not dwell together. 7And there was strife between the herdsmen of Abram’s livestock and the herdsmen of Lot’s livestock. The Canaanites and the Perizzites then dwelt in the land. 8So Abram said to Lot, “Please let there be no strife between you and me, and between my herdsmen and your herdsmen; for we are brethren. 9Is not the whole land before you? Please separate from me. If you take the left, then I will go to the right; or, if you go to the right, then I will go to the left.” 10And Lot lifted his eyes and saw all the plain of Jordan, that it was well watered everywhere (before the LORD destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah) like the garden of the LORD, like the land of Egypt as you go toward Zoar. 11Then Lot chose for himself all the plain of Jordan, and Lot journeyed east. And they separated from each other. 12Abram dwelt in the land of Canaan, and Lot dwelt in the cities of the plain and pitched his tent even as far as Sodom. 13But the men of Sodom were exceedingly wicked and sinful against the LORD.
Intro. What not to wear, TV show that helps participants learn what's best by showing what's wrong with what's worst. This is one example of getting positive direction from a negative example. Are there others? An ad campaign that showed young people the "uncool" aspects of smoking; the "your brain, your brain on drugs" ads; Scared Straight takes juvenile offenders into max security prisons so see the end result of choosing crime in hopes they will choose better.
Lot is a role model for relationships - in a negative sense. Who should we choose to connect to? To make our most intimate friends, examples, advisors in life? I'm talking about those we are closest to in life. Lot demonstrates the need for regular, ongoing, intimate connections with other Christians by his neglect of such relationships which resulted in serious consequences. Without real ongoing relationships like these we face the real danger of slipping into similar situations. So…
Why Not Lot?
First: He Misread God's Provision (v. 1) Abram went up from Egypt, he and his wife and all that he had, and Lot with him…
A. The Real Resource. (v. 4) Abram called on the name of the LORD.
1. Real blessing in life, whether it brings material wealth or not is found in relationship with God. Abram understood God was his source. Gen. 12:2 I'll make you great nation…bless…make name great…
a. It wasn't building flocks, agricultural methods, horse trading, land acquisitions, etc. that brought the blessing. It was being close to the Lord, calling on the name of the Lord.
2. Lot got the wrong idea – he thought the key to more blessing was more land, independence, connection with and in prosperous cities. He looked for the best he could get, then took what he wanted.
a. Our relationship with God through our Lord Jesus Christ is our greatest and only real resource for blessing of any sort.
Matt. 6:31-33 Don't worry, saying, "What shall we eat…drink…wear?" For your heavenly Father knows you need all these things. Seek first the kingdom of God & His righteousness & all these things shall be added to you.
John 10:10 I've come that they may have life & that…more abundantly.
b. It's not that we don't work, prepare, save, etc., but that we don't put material needs ahead of God. And it doesn't mean we'll all be rich (riches are not wrong) but the wealth of God's friendship is a treasure that can never be taken away, that secures eternal blessing.
c. Lot Lesson: Daily grow daily closer to Christ, stay close to the altar, give Him gratitude and worship for all of life's blessings.
B. The Blessing Connection. (v. 8) Abram said to Lot, “Please let there be no strife between you and me…"
1. Lot not only misread the real source of blessing, but also lost sight of his need to be with people of blessing. He allowed material gains to separate him from the blessed relationship. Thought, "If I just take my stuff and get far enough away, blessings will flow and my riches will grow. I'll do my thing and you do yours."