Genesis 13:5 And Lot also, which went with Abram, had flocks, and herds, and tents.
6 And the land was not able to bear them, that they might dwell together: for their substance was great, so that they could not dwell together.
7 And there was a strife between the herdmen of Abram’s cattle and the herdmen of Lot’s cattle: and the Canaanite and the Perizzite dwelled then in the land.
8 And Abram said unto Lot, Let there be no strife, I pray thee, between me and thee, and between my herdmen and thy herdmen; for we be brethren.
9 Is not the whole land before thee? separate thyself, I pray thee, from me: if thou wilt take the left hand, then I will go to the right; or if thou depart to the right hand, then I will go to the left.
As Abram and Lot travelled together, it became increasingly obvious that the multitude of their possessions would make it difficult for them to dwell together. Eventually, the herdmen of the two men began to strive with each other over the pastures for their cattle. No doubt, both groups of herdmen were primarily concerned with the well-being of their own master’s cattle. Neither was willing to compromise their own needs or wishes in order to accommodate the needs of the other group. As Abram witnessed the relationship decay, he knew that he must concede to the inevitability of separating the two groups. He asked Lot to choose another piece of land in which to dwell.
∙ (For children): Paul and Barnabas had a sharp disagreement on whether or not to take John Mark with them on their second missionary journey. The matter did not get settled at that time. They split up and went different directions, Barnabas going with Mark and Paul going with Silas (Acts 15:36-41).
∙ (For everyone): Why was there strife between the herdmen of Abram and Lot? Why were the herdmen unable to settle the dispute? Does it appear that either group would give any ground to the other?
∙ What might have happened if Abram had not stepped in to solve the dispute between herdmen? How did Abram demonstrate wisdom in solving the problem?
∙ Ask God to help you understand how strife begins.
∙ Ask God for wisdom to settle disputes for His glory.
SONG: TAKE MY LIFE, AND LET IT BE