FI Y4 WK 4 Parashah VA’YEI’RA (he appeared) Genesis 18:1-22:24.




The LORD appeared to him


YHVH APPEARED…in time…to Abraham (in the plains of Mamre)…

while he was sitting…


In transcendence God dwells in an unapproachable light. (1 Timothy 6:16)

But in manifestation, God makes himself relatable to finite and mortal humans. (1 John 1:1-2)


There was a heavenly agenda, an action about to be taken. God did not go directly to it, however; he first made known to his prophet-friend Abraham what he was about to do.

(Amos 3:7)


Amazing things can happen while you are sitting, waiting, relaxed and receptive. (Acts 2:1-4)

Abraham was at the entrance of his tent—the place of the threshold where family covenant is made and where the blood of protection from the Angel of Death is located: two angels of death were about to visit outside this door, along with YHVH who manifested himself in a veil of human form. This kind of event in the Tanakh is referred to as an epiphany—a manifestation and revelation of the Holy One, Blessed be He, into the temporal world of man. God has been seen, but not directly gazed upon in the blaze of his face, though Moses was permitted to commune with him “face to face” without the destructiveness of the glory tearing him away from the earth, for God told him in Exodus 33:20, “You cannot see my face: for there shall no man see me, and live”: this happened on Mount Sinai in Exodus 33-34.


Sodom was about to be destroyed—utterly—burned to the ground with a fire falling from the sky so incinerating that it melted even the rocks and timbers down to the dirt on which the wicked city had been built. But God gave to Abraham a chance to intercede; and Abraham pled for the life of his nephew Lot and the family surrounding him. Yet, only Lot and two of his  daughters made it out of the inferno. Even his wife was caught in the flash. And our Lord Jesus warned us in Luke 17:28 seq., saying,


Likewise as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, thy bought, they sold, they planted, they built;

But the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all.

Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed.


(For the blaspheming world,

it is a terrifying epiphany to come.)


In that day, he which shall be upon the housetop, and his stuff in the house, let him not come down to take it away: and he that is in the field, let him likewise not return back.


Whosoever shall seek to save his life shall lose it; and whosoever shall lose his life shall preserve it.


You must let go of your life to save it.

You must give it to Christ.

You must abandon your will to his will.

You must become a disciple, a follower, a friend of God.


Lot’s wife loved the stuff she was leaving behind…including sons in law whom Lot tried to save, but who mocked him instead: they perished on the very next morning.


Amazing things happen while ordinary life is being conducted by ordinary people in ordinary ways. But divine interventions upend the ordinary and turn the world that is into the world that was.


The story proceeds from the destruction of Sodom to Lot’s two daughters seducing him with wine and conceiving from him two sons that would become adversaries to Abraham’s son Isaac and his descendants through Jacob. Those two sons became the nations of Moab and Ammon juxtaposed to Israel on the east side of the Jordan river.


Careful how you spend your ordinary days. Let them proceed from fellowship with God at the door of your heart, the place where Jesus has been knocking and asking entrance into your life. (Revelation 3:20)

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