Genesis 12:1 (Youngs Translation) And Jehovah saith unto Abram, “Go for thyself, from thy land, and from thy kindred, and from the house of thy father, unto the land which I shew thee.”
One of the key things about the Hebrew month of Kislev is identity change. Abraham was one of those individuals in the Bible that had an identity change in Genesis 12. But before we jump into his identity change, let’s do a history review of Abraham’s family line in Genesis 11. Abraham was the son of Terah who was the great, great, great grandson of Eber who was the great, great grandson of Noah who of course was the great grandson of Enoch who was the great, great, great, great grandson of Adam. Wow! What an impressive spiritual family lineage…. I can honestly say mine does not look like that. I am the faith pioneer in my family line.
Eber (Abraham’s great, great, great grandfather) was a faith pioneer as well. He was the 14th generation from Adam. A special distinction is made in Gen 10:21 where it says “Shem was the ancestor of all the sons of Eber”…. Eber was actually about 4 generations from Shem… but before Shem’s sons are mentioned, the Word introduces us to Eber. It sounds to me like Eber was destined to be a carrier of the Blessing just like Shem was… Gen 9 says “the God of Shem.”
Jewish historians say that during the time of the building of the Tower of Babel, Eber crossed over the Euphrates River… distancing himself and his family from Babylon and Nimrod…..from a sinful land and embarking on a walk of faith. Eber means “to cross over”. The name Hebrew comes from Eber…. to be a Hebrew means to have “crossed over”. Euphrates means “abundant” or “storage houses of heaven”.In fact he named his son Peleg which means “divided”… he placed a divider (the Euphrates River) between them and him. Genesis 10:25 confirms that the world was divided when he was born. Through the name of his son the godly man Eber gives us a glimpse into his heart and character to live a holy life, separated and consecrated from the sinful world of Babylon.
Unfortunately, the generations after Eber (until Abraham) turned to idol worship and didn’t serve God (Joshua 24:2). We don’t know much about Peleg except that they died young (even Noah outlived him by 10 years)…. he was the first to die among the 10 generations after the flood. Likewise, we don’t know much about Reu, Seureg or Nahor (except he died early also and Noah outlived him as well). All we know is that it’s probable that these 4 generations turned from God and worshipped idols.
Terah we know a bit more about. Josh 24:2 mentions him specifically as having worshipped other gods. However, Gen 11:31 tells us that he set out from Ur to go to Canaan. It doesn’t tell us why he set out to leave his home in Ur, all we know is he never made it to Canaan. He reached Haran, a place that was similar in many ways to Ur. A city where there was also a temple to the Ninnar, not as big as in Ur, but still similar. The city was smaller, and not as wealthy or important as Ur, but to someone from Ur, it would have all been very familiar, and probably felt like home. The customs and culture were similar. Seems as if he settled in the familiar… what was comfortable.
Abraham was 20 generations from Adam. Genesis 14:13 refers to Abraham as a Hebrew, linking him to Eber. The God of Shem, became the God of Eber, and then became the God of Abraham. Which brings us back again to Genesis 12:1……. which we’ll pick up in the next blog entry.
Today no matter what your spiritual lineage looks like, determine to be a faith pioneer…. going farther than those before you. Grabbing ahold of the promises of God for your future generations… making your ceiling their floor.