13 1So Abram left Egypt and went back to the Negev, he and his wife and everything he owned, and Lot still with him. 2By now Abram was very rich, loaded with cattle and silver and gold. 3He moved on from the Negev, camping along the way, to Bethel, the place he had first set up his tent between Bethel and Ai 4and built his first altar. Abram prayed there to God. 5Lot, who was traveling with Abram, was also rich in sheep and cattle and tents. 6But the land couldn’t support both of them; they had too many possessions. They couldn’t both live there—7quarrels broke out between Abram’s shepherds and Lot’s shepherds. The Canaanites and Perizzites were also living on the land at the time. 8Abram said to Lot, “Let’s not have fighting between us, between your shepherds and my shepherds. After all, we’re family. 9Look around. Isn’t there plenty of land out there? Let’s separate. If you go left, I’ll go right; if you go right, I’ll go left.” 10Lot looked. He saw the whole plain of the Jordan spread out, well watered (this was before God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah), like God’s garden, like Egypt, and stretching all the way to Zoar. 11Lot took the whole plain of the Jordan. Lot set out to the east. That’s how they came to part company, uncle and nephew. 12Abram settled in Canaan; Lot settled in the cities of the plain and pitched his tent near Sodom. 13The people of Sodom were evil—flagrant sinners against God. 14After Lot separated from him, God said to Abram, “Open your eyes, look around. Look north, south, east, and west. 15Everything you see, the whole land spread out before you, I will give to you and your children forever. 16I’ll make your descendants like dust—counting your descendants will be as impossible as counting the dust of the Earth. 17So—on your feet, get moving! Walk through the country, its length and breadth; I’m giving it all to you.” 18Abram moved his tent. He went and settled by the Oaks of Mamre in Hebron. There he built an altar to God.
The Message® / © 2002 Eugene H. Peterson About