Valley of Siddim
Mon, 09 May 2011 16:31:55
By: Sylvia Bambola
We have left the valley of rebellion (Shinar) only to find ourselves in the valley of strife. And as I mentioned last week, it is reasonable to assume that if we are not at peace with God, we will not be at peace with our fellowman, either. So, is it any wonder that in the very next valley named in the Bible, the Valley of Siddim, the first recorded war in scripture takes place? Many years have passed since the Tower of Babel and people have spread out in all directions. In this particular area there are now nine kings with the head honcho being King Chedorlaomer. For twelve years the other kings have been serving Chedorlaomer (Genesis 14). Finally, in the thirteenth year five of the kings rebelled, including the King of Sodom and the King of Gomorrah, and within a year, Chedorlaomer marched against them with his army and the army of his three allies. So it was four kings against five.
The four kings were able to vanquish the others and took them as spoils of war along with their goods, livestock, children, and wives. Among those taken was Lot, Abraham's nephew, who had, some time before, left Abraham to live in Sodom.
And where was Abraham all this time? Safely by the mountain of Mamre. Abraham, called by God to separate himself from the world, is the fountainhead of the twelve tribes of Israel, but he's also a wonderful picture of the believer. We too are called by God to be separated; to refrain from the world's sin and strife. 1 John 5:19 says "the whole world lieth in wickedness". Romans 12:2a cautions us to "be not conformed to this world". And 1 John 2:15 admonishes us to "love not the world neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him." But James 4:4 goes even further and tells us that to be friends with the world is to be an enemy of God. But like Abraham, who, when he heard about Lot's capture, was forced to take up arms and rescue him, sometimes we too are pulled into the war and conflict around us. There will always be someone who causes strife in our world, someone who wants to rule, to control, to subjugate. In the larger sense we can think of people like Hitler or Bin Laden, but on a smaller scale it could be that difficult boss or abusive spouse or impossible neighbor or co-worker.
So there will be times when we will leave our mountain of peace for the valley of strife, pulled there by war or discord not of our making. But in the end, Abraham and his men prevailed and rescued Lot and the other captives. And in the end, if we faithfully follow God's leading, we will prevail too.
Until next week,
The above is a reprint from Sylvia Bambola's website http://www.sylviabambola.com. Sylvia is the author of Refiner's Fire and Tears in a Bottle which are now available as ebooks on Amazon. To view her book trailers see: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=topj4guFDjg and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FYRwdcSR3Dk