Our last blog, written the day before Easter, noted that in order for salvation to be extended to mankind, Jesus had to die. Something (someone) also died just before Abram took the bold step to leave his home and go on a faith-journey with God. That someone was his father, Terah.
As we enter Abram’s story in Genesis 12, we see that God had already given Abram a command. “The Lord had said to Abram, ‘Leave your country, your people and your father’s household and go to the land I will show you.'”1 God had spoken to Abram while he was still in Mesopotamia, before he lived in Haran.2
Terah, Abram’s father, had three sons. Abraham was the eldest, then Nahor, and lastly Haran. But Haran, the youngest, died prematurely. It must have been a very painful experience for the family.
Despite that, they had actually started moving in obedience to God’s instructions. Genesis 11:31 says that Terah set out from Ur of the Chaldeans to go to Canaan. But they got stuck. Where?
On the way to Canaan, they got stuck in a place called Haran. They were stuck in the place of their pain and their loss. A place where the enemy had had a victory. Perhaps bitterness set in. Maybe also regret. Maybe Abram respected his father too much to force him to move on in life. Maybe he had his own sorrow to deal with. But whatever the case, they delayed. Abram had gotten stuck. He and his family were stuck in Haran. It was only after his father died that Abram found the courage to actually obey and walk away from that chapter of his life.
In answering God’s call, there are always things that need to be left behind. There is a life that we will have to walk away from when we decide to move with God. We need to get unstuck from places of bitterness and unforgiveness. We need to move on.
In the next several blogs, we will look at more of Abraham’s story, and what we can learn from it. For now, what is God calling us to leave behind? Let go of? Forgive?
1 Genesis 12:1; 2 Acts 2:7;