Strangely enough the Lord still makes a covenant with Abram. The issue of children once again comes up. You will have descendants, but then the bad news. 400 years of suck. But never fear, they will return and end up where they were promised.
The thing that stands out for me in this passage is the altar that is created between Abram and God.
What is this concept of altar and why is it so important?
It would seem that as he moves around he builds a new altar at every significant place, a marker between him and God. Perhaps something to remind him.
Abram then has to go on to save Lot from some collateral damage really. Lot and his entire crew are swept up in someone else’s war and carried off in the process. Abram gets involved. He selects men and gets Lot and the people back. The other kings recognize that Abram has something special and acknowledges that God must be involved. They offer Abram goods and they keep the people but he is very careful to keep his eye on the ball and stands strong.
Abram gets told by God to go, he goes. He is told to do this and that, he does. He is told that he is blessed and he responds with an alter and “calls on the name of the Lord” – be interesting to know what that really meant…. The calling bit.
Then the strange bit about the famine and having to go to Egypt, all good except a beautiful woman is involved, Sarai, Abrams wife. He tells here to lie gets rich, pharaoh gets rather sick, because he took here as his wife. Ouch. They all leave, with all the baggage … Good and bad!