Reading: Genesis 12
Principal Question: Can a man be God’s friend?
Other Questions: Is God completely trustworthy? What holds a family together? How trustworthy is Abraham?
The strength of a relationship can be measured by the degree of trust between the persons. The story of Abraham is about trust between friends and commitment in marriage.
- Read the story. What questions do you have about this story?
- Does Abram appear to be a ‘holy man’?
- What do you think about the marriage relationship between Abram and Sarai?
- According to this story, must a person be perfect in order to be God’s friend?
- Did Abram show trust in God when he left his home in Mesopotamia?
- Did Abram show trust in God when he went to Egypt?
- Did Abram show trust in God when he lied about Sarah?
- What did God do to prove God's trustworthiness to care for Abraham?
Cultural and Historical Notes
Abram feared being killed by someone who wanted to take his wife. Sarai was his half sister, and so in order to protect himself, Abram told everyone that his wife, Sarai, was really his sister. Since their father, Terah, was dead, Abram would be the guardian and protector of his sister. Anyone who wanted to marry Sarai would have to negotiate with Abram. This time of negotiation would give Abram opportunity to find a way of escape. Unfortunately for Abram, the emperor of Egypt, the Pharaoh, heard about this beautiful woman who had just arrived from Mesopotamia, and sent an armed delegation to bring her to the palace. In a country like Egypt, no one negotiated with Pharaoh. He simply took whatever he wanted. Abram’s clever plan did not work.
Content Questions for English Comprehension
- Who told Abram to leave his home country?
- What did God promise to do for Abram?
- How old was Abram when he left Haran?
- Why did Abram go to Egypt?
- Why did Abram lie about his wife when he was in Egypt?