Abram Learns the Names of God
The Names of GOD
A theology book
for ages 6 and up!
Ghostwriter’s agreement between Christina Rice (6) – owner, and Grampa Rice (62) – writer. All rights reserved. 01 January 2015
Table of Contents
Abram Learns The Names of GOD
A theology book for ages 6 and up!
Via a ghostwriter’s agreement between Christina Rice (6) – owner,
and Grampa Rice (62) – writer. All rights reserved. 01 January 2015
Readers Note: This series of stories, that one might read to their children, is based on carefully dictated fact. Dictated originally by the LORD God himself, for the Holy Bible clearly states that: “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works” (2Tim 3:16-17). The facts in evidence for this chapter are given in Genesis 6-12, and it behooves us all to reread those seven chapters again. This author has come to a faith in our Lord Jesus Christ wherein, for his Holy Scripture, God says exactly what he means and means exactly what he says. These stories are thus, historical fiction, with the greatest emphasis on the historical, and only minor development of the speculative. Then, too, even the speculative is soundly based on over 50 years of study by this Bible student. God’s Words, and consequently these embelishments, are intended to remain forever public domain.
Abram sat at the table and watched as his aged host cut bread into thick slices. She placed them on a ceramic plate beside a stack of roasted meat and lettuce leaves. He tried to guess her age, and was thinking she was probably over 900 years old! Her husband, Noah was expected shortly, returning from a neighbor’s farm. Abram was very eager to talk with Noah. He was struggling with a decision, and the struggle had caused him to travel three days north of his home, just to talk with Noah, the oldest man in the world.
Abram’s great-great-great-great Grandpa Eber had recommended that Abram make this journey and present his dilemma to Noah. Grandpa Eber was himself 275 years old, and had told his grandson not to rush into a life changing decision without the wisest of all counsel. And so Abram, having just turned 40 years old himself, watched the old woman prepare lunch and pondered what he would tell Noah when he returned.
A young lad came into the large patio area carrying a head of cheese. Two girls were in the corner separating egg whites and mixing them into a creamy sauce. They looked at the boy, whispered together, and began to giggle. The old woman said something to the lad. It was a tongue that Abram did not understand, and the boy set the cheese on the table and began slicing it into squares.
Abram looked out from the overhanging vines which blocked the heat of the sun. An early spring had brought only a dash of green to the arid plains. Way off in the distance, across the rolling hills, Abram could see the large mound of a hill that rose above all the others. He had heard that it was the city of Nippur, and it was a completely man-made mountain that stood here in the plains between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers. The fields around my home in Ur are now lush and green. Are these as green as they get up here? It was curious to Abram that Noah, who knew the LORD God better than anyone on the face of the earth, chose to live in such a dry land, south of Babylon. It was even more curious that from Noah’s home you could see the faint outline of Nippur, the city of temples. That great mound was built to honor the many man-made Sumerian gods. Why would Noah even want to see such a heathen city?
As Abram scanned the rolling hills he picked out an old man walking toward him. He had a staff in his hand, and his light colored robe was girded up to assist his surprising pace. This is Noah? Noah the Ark builder? Father of Shem, Ham, and Japheth? Abram was eager to talk with the oldest man on God’s green earth. The girls interrupted his pondering. They brought a platter, loaded with sliced zucchinis, onion, garlic, and cucumbers. In the middle sat two little bowls of the creamy white sauce they had concocted. They did not say anything but smiled as they moved the platter closer to Abram.
Readers Note: In study of the whole Bible, and in particular Genesis chapters six through twelve, the Bible student discovers all ten of Abram’s ancestors on “the other side of the flood.” That is how God refers to the times after the world flood which destroyed his original creation. All ten of Abram’s ancestors were still around in 2016 B.C. when Abram turned forty. Of the ten, only Noah (2948-1998 BC), found in this chapter, and Peleg (2247-2008 BC) would die before Abram arrives in the Promised Land, in 1981 BC. Also of note: Shem and Eber outlived Abram, both stayed in “the region beyond.” Only one child of Eber came to be called a Hebrew. You see, in the Hebrew language every word is loaded with significance. Eber means “the region beyond;” Hebrew means “one from beyond.” In Hebrew the study of linguistic form, called etymology, is very important. In the Bible each of God’s words take on a special significance. Baptists have long held to the inerrant, infallible verbal inspiration of every word.
As he stepped up on the patio and examined the young man who stood there, Noah began conversation before Abram could even speak. “So you are Eber’s grandson,” Noah left Abram no room for a response. “And the LORD God spoke to you?” He walked across the stone floor, hugged his wife, and kissed her on the cheek. “God wants you to leave Ur of the Chaldees, leave all your family behind, leave all their false gods behind, and go to a Promised Land. You, Abram, are an answer to an old man’s prayer.”
Abram stood beside the table struck with awe. “How did you?…” Abram stammered, “I mean… what should I?… Well, I mean… it is such an honor to see you again.”
Abram was a teenager when Noah came to his Grandpa Eber’s village to see the line of grandchildren that spoke Noah’s native language. The Tower of Babel caper had confounded the tongue of all his other grand children. Abram remembered the day of Noah’s visit. He looks exactly the same, and he still speaks with such exactness. Only a few of Noah’s grandchildren, through his son Shem, now spoke Noah’s native language.
Abram had heard all the stories of how Noah had carefully chosen his great-great grandson’s name to be Eber. It meant “the region beyond.” Abram knew his own name to mean “exalted father,” and now he wondered if Noah had chosen it. How is it that of all his thousands of thousands of offspring, Noah knows my name? I am ten generations away! Could the father of all humanity have chosen my name to be exalted-father?
“I am famished, and just in time for our meal,” Noah said as he winked at his wife and took a seat opposite from Abram. “Sit, Sit,” he instructed. “My wife has prepared a fine platter and we can talk as we share a meal.”
Abram still stood. His mouth was gaped open, and his hand stroked his youthful beard.
“Sit, Sit. We have much to talk about.”
Over the next three days, Abram gleaned everything he could absorb from Noah. The account of the world before the flood, and how far it had “devolved” from the Lord God’s purpose in creation. The stories about Shem, Ham, and Japheth as they helped their father with his inconceivable task of building an Ark. Noah described in detail the Ark as the container that the LORD God designed to hold all breathing creatures of the world, two of every kind. It was miraculous!
Noah talked of the wrath of God that was poured out on this world, and the grace that brought Noah and his children to the other side of the flood. He told of the tower of Babel, and how Shem and his seed were the only ones still speaking the world’s original language. “My children thought they could be lifted up like the Most High God. They built unbelievable towers and marveled in the works of their own hands. The LORD God saw what they were doing and confounded all their languages. The site of their sin has been called Babel ever since.”
But of all the things Noah told, Abram paid most attention to the details of the promised seed. God had called it the seed of woman, rather than the seed of man. He promised that this seed would save all of humanity from the rebellion that deprived them of fellowship with the LORD God, their Creator. It turned out that Noah knew much about Abram and his calling. He had been asking the LORD God to separate someone from all the idolatry and false god worship, in order to preserve this promised seed line. “My children now worship idols made with their own hands! Even the children of Shem now worship the moon, the planets and the stars.
“Separating from all of your family and going to a land God has promised to you is far easier than building an Ark,” Noah laughed. “I have been praying for you ever since I heard your name. You know that Abram means exalted-father don’t you?” Noah sat back in his big chair, “I knew that God had answered my prayers when I first heard your name. You, Abram, are to be the father of the promised seed. The seed that will bruise Satan’s head, just like God told the ten generations before the world flood. God promised the seed to Adam, the very created man.
“You and your wife Sarai should tear loose of everything and go. Be obedient to the command of the LORD God. Know for certain that he will keep his promise about the chosen seed, and that he will do it in your child or grandchild. Just trust God.”
Abram’s three day visit with Noah passed in a blur. Abram daily rose from his comfortable bed in the large guest room at the first glimpse of daylight. The servant girls always had a breakfast prepared. He learned that they were the tenth generation of Noah’s children through his son Japheth. They could not understand his tongue, but delighted to hear Abram and Noah talk. And talk they did, staying up well after the sun disappeared and watching sparks from their fire climb up in its stead.
Abram had taken note of every detail he could grasp. Noah was to head north to the other side of Babylon and preach for two weeks on “The Righteousness of the LORD God.” Abram was to head back south, to his home in Ur of the “clod breakers,” called Chaldees. Noah went with vitality and excitement in his step. Abram went with confidence and determination in his. He would obey the LORD God of Noah. He would leave his father and the Chaldean moon worshipers, go to God’s Promised Land, and expect God’s chosen seed.
From the region beyond Abram heard from God. Abram knew that God had made the whole world. He had listened to Noah tell how God did it in just 6 days!
One day, while Abram watched a very bright cloud in the sky, he heard a voice say,
No one else was with Abram, so he looked into the cloud and said, “Yes Lord.”
And God said, “Abram, I want you to leave your fathers house and go to a land that I will show you.”
Then God said to Abram, “I will make thee a great nation, and I will bless thee and make thy name Great!”
When Abram went home for lunch that day he told no one that God spoke to him. He just pondered what God had said. That evening, while at supper, Abram told Sarai, his beautiful wife what God had said to him. They wondered what to do.
The next day, when Abram’s brothers went to the city of Ur, Abram stayed home.
Abram and Sarai spent the day packing up all that they owned. They were going to obey God and move to a new land.
Abram told Terah, his father, that he and Sarai were going to move to a new land that God had promised to give him. Abram and all his uncles and cousins were called “the sons of Eber.” They did not fit in with all the Chaldees people around them.
Now that Noah, their great ancestor, had died, many of them stopped believing in God.
But Abram believed everything he heard from Noah. When Noah’s God, and Eber’s God, spoke to Abram, he was going to listen.
And so Abram and Sarai, his wife, came into a new and promised land. The son of Eber, who crossed over the river was called “Hebrew.”
The land that Abram and Sarai found across the river was beautiful. Their sheep and goats and cattle had lots to eat. The people that Abram found in the new land were far worse than the Chaldees people that he had left behind.
The Canaanite people hardly remembered Noah. The Canaanites had sprung from Noah’s cursed grandson, the son of Ham. They now did not even believe that the LORD God created the world in 6 days. The people in the new land did not even believe that there was a great flood or that Noah had built the great container called the Ark.
When Abram came to a huge valley he could see great mountains far away. There LORD God spoke to Abram again.
And God said, “Abram, unto thy seed will I give this whole land.”
It was there that Abram built an altar of stones to the LORD God. It was the very first altar ever built in Canaan land.
Abram wandered all over the huge valley he had found in Canaan land. When he came to the mountains on the far side he built a second altar of stones. At the base of those mountains Abram called upon the name of the LORD God.
The two places where Abram built altars of stone are found today, 4,000 years later. The first altar in the promised land, is now a city called Bethel, or “House of God.” The second altar which Abram built in the promised land was beside the mountains which came to be called “The Hills of Zion.” Both places became very important to God, and to the Hebrews. The Hills of Zion hold a city called “Jerusalem,” which means “Teaching of Peace.”
One of those hills of Zion was shaped like a skull, and was called “Golgotha.” Much later, when Abram was very old, he would be asked to revisit that hill in Zion, the one shaped like a skull. God would ask Abram to go to Golgotha and to offer his only begotten son as a sacrifice on that very hill. Even later a boy named David would bury a giant’s skull on the same mountain. And then David’s son, Solomon, would build a temple on the next mountain over, a mount called Moriah. But those stories about Golgotha and the Hills of Zion must go in another book.
Abram left the Hills of Zion and traveled down through the land that God had promised to give to him and his seed. God promised to make Abram a great nation if Abram would go to this promised land. God always keeps his promises. But there seemed to be a significant famine creeping into this land of God’s promise.
The famine in the land got much worse in the years after Abram left the hills of Zion. It was likely a judgment against the evil in the land of Canaan.
Canaan was not a powerful nation like Egypt. Egypt was the prosperous land to the south of the promised land, and Abram moved his flocks and herds into the rich grazing land in the north of Egypt. Egypt was a vast kingdom and not part of God’s promised land.
Abram should have trusted God’s promise, even as he went into Egypt. But he decided, instead, to lie about Sarai being his wife. Her fair skinned beauty caught every ones attention in Egypt, making Abram fear for his life. But the LORD plagued Pharaoh, the king of Egypt, with great plagues, because of Abram’s lie. “What have you done to me?” Pharaoh asked Abram.
Abram’s lie was an embarrassment. He left Egypt’s rich land of Goshen and went back toward God’s promised land. Despite Abram’s fears and lies, when he returned to God’s promised land his flocks and herds had more than doubled. Lot, Abram’s nephew, who came with him from Ur of the Chaldees, had doubled the size of his herds as well.
Abram and all his servants, and Lot with all his shepherds came into the southern tip of God’s promised land. There was not enough room for them to travel together, so Abram and Lot stood at a vista that overlooked the vast promised land. “Lot, you choose the land where you will live, and I will move the other way.”
They had come up from Egypt’s land of Goshen and traveled through what would come to be called Kadesh Barnea, which stood on the edge of the Wilderness of Zin. From where he stood, Lot saw the great green valley spreading all the way to what is now called the Dead Sea. It was very much alive back then. And Lot made his choice.
As Lot lead all his flocks and herds down into this lush valley he was heard to exclaim, “Viva Lot’s Vegas, Sin city here I come.”
Abram was initially told to leave his father’s house, and all his kindred. He only partially obeyed. His father, Terah, wanted to see the famous Ziggurats built in the city of Babylon. So he tagged along with Abram and Sarai.
Terah saw the great Babylonian temples that were stacked high into the heavens. He then continued on with his son Abram. He died in a city on the headwaters of the Euphrates river.
Now Haran was a younger brother of Abram. He had died back in Ur of the Chaldees, and Abram raised his Haran’s son, Lot, as his own. The city where Abram buried his father came to be called Haran, after Abram’s little brother. But Lot left this city, named after his father, and sojourned with his Uncle Abram as he headed off to Canaan land.
Now all these years later, Lot separated from Abram and went his own way. Abram was now separated from all his kindred like the LORD God initially asked. God was now well pleased with Abram. Now that Abram was in complete obedience, God came to him again.
God said unto Abram, “Lift up now thine eyes, and look from the place where thou art northward, and southward, and eastward, and westward.” All the land that he could see was promised to Abram and to his seed, forever!
Then the LORD promised Abram, who had no children yet, “I will make thy seed as the dust of the earth, as the sand of the sea, as the stars of the sky.” They will be so many, no one can count them. But more important than the thousands of thousands, the LORD promised Abram one special offspring. That one promised seed would bless all the families of the earth. You see, way back in the Garden of Eden God had promised, the very first man, Adam, a son that would bruise Satan’s head.
Ten generations later God promised Noah, who built the Ark which survived the flood, that his oldest son, Shem would be in the seed line for this promised one who would redeem all of mankind. And now, ten generations after Shem, the LORD God promised Abram that the redeemer would be from him and be a Hebrew.
But Satan, the opposer of God, heard the promises made by the LORD God. Now Satan had already brought about the fall of man in the Garden of Eden. He had lead man into vile evil which required the world flood as judgment. He had lifted man’s pride to build a tower all the way up to heaven. The great Ziggurats, called the Tower of Babel were built in the ancient city of Babylon. Satan, in opposing all that God promised, must find a way to destroy these Hebrews.
Abram had much to learn about his God, and the struggle that he was now involved in.
With Lot gone, Abram came to a great plain which came to be called Mamre, because it provides milk, nourishment, strength, fatness and rigor. It was in the Canaanite land which is now called Hebron.
Living in Mamre, Abram was doing very well. His herds and flocks multiplied and so did his many servants. But there was trouble brewing on every side.
Five kings of the Canaanites rebelled against King Chedorlaomer and his three kings from Elam back east. Lot lived with these rebelling kings. He dwelt in the cities of the plain, and pitched his tent toward Sodom and Gomorrah, where Bera and Birsha were the kings.
When the kings of those nations back east came and made war with Bera and Birsha, the whole land of Canaan was conquered. They took the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah, and Lot, and all that he owned, were taken captive with the rest of the Canaanites.
“And when Abram heard that his brother (Lot) was taken captive, he armed his trained servants, born in his own house, three hundred and eighteen, and pursued them unto Dan.”
King Chedorlaomer and the kings that captured Lot and all the Caananites were camped on the northern tip of God’s Promised Land. Abram divided his servants to surround them, and in the middle of the night, the three hundred and eighteen armed servants of Abram attack. Their attack against such a huge army was a great surprise and all four kings and all their soldiers fled back toward their city of Damascus. Who would have thought that three hundred and eighteen shepherds could scare off four Syrian Kings and all their pillaging armies? God was watching over Abram with very special care, just like he said he would.
And so Abram came back to Canaan with Lot, and with all that King Chedorlaomer had carried away, all their goods, their woman and their people. The King of Sodom said unto Abram, “Give me the persons and take the goods to thyself.” But Abram knew who had saved him from the Syrians and he would not accept a single dime from the evil Sodomites. There was, however, another king that came out to greet Abram when he returned from this grand pursuit; it was the King of Salem.
Salem means “Peace.” This mysterious King of Salem, named Melchizedek, walks onto a page of the Holy Bible and then disappears. He resurfaces once in the Psalms of David, and then is not seen again until the New Testament epistle to the Hebrews gives a detailed explanation of his importance. When this King of Salem, or “Prince of Peace,” came to meet Abram, he brought forth bread and wine. “Melchizedek” is a Hebrew word which combines two words, “Melek” meaning “king,” and “tzedek,” meaning “righteousness.” Add to this that the Holy Bible says he was, “The Priest of the Most-High-God, and this character has a tirune title, King of Salem, King of Righteousness, and Priest of the Most-High-God.
This is a profound revelation hidden in the middle of a historical narrative about Abram. A King of Salem is introduced when there is not yet founded a land of Salem or a city called Jerusalem. His name means “King of Righteousness,” and that name is to be given to the Hebrew Messiah that is yet to come. Also, his title is “The Priest of the Most-High-God,” which is exactly the role that the“Anointed of God,” which in Hebrew is, “Messiah,” was supposed to fulfill. This is an epic revelation. This King of Salem pronounces a blessing on Abram which says, “Blessed be Abram of the Most-High-God, possessor of heaven and earth: And blessed be the Most-High-God, which hath delivered thine enemies into thy hand.”
It will be two-thousand years before this little revelation is fully understood. The promised seed would be called the Hebrew Messiah, and would hold all three of these titles, the Prince of Peace, the King of Righteousness, and the Priest of the Most-High-God. The Hebrew “Messiah,” is in the Greek, “Christ,” which means in English, “The Anointed One.” Christ would also come bringing bread and wine, but in a much more profound sense. This king and priest bringing bread and wine, is a profound foreshadow of what is to come. God often puts that in his revelations. Abram gave this King of Salem, Melchizedek, a Priest of the Most-High-God, a tithe of all.
When Abram received the blessing of the Prince of Peace, the King of Righteousness, called the Priest of the Most-High-God, he was deeply moved. Abram had heard from the LORD God, and he built altars to the LORD God. But now, after the blessing from this Melchizedek, Abram talked to the Lord GOD. In his Hebrew tongue he knew the huge difference in those two names. In the English tongue, because they sound alike, many miss the meaningful distinction.
In meeting this King and Priest, Abram was told by the King of Righteousness, pronounced in Hebrew, as we said, “Melchizedek,” that he, Abram, was blessed by the Most-High-God. This was an all new name to Abram, and it all came from this provocative individual, The King of Salem. When Abram first heard the voice of God from the cloud, back in the Ur of the Chaldees, he responded to the LORD God, and built altars to the LORD God. That very personal name implies that God is the self existent one. That title which includes God’s personal name is so revered in the Hebrew tongue that it is only spelled out in English four times in the whole Bible. There it is given the English rendition of the Hebrew “Jehovah.” That name is SO holy that in English it is designated, “LORD,” with all capital letters. The Bible is emphatic that one should never take that Holy name in vain or use it lightly.
With that great care and reverence we read the personal name of God as “The LORD God.” In the Hebrew tongue that name is highly revered and guarded as “Jehovah Elohim,” or LORD God, with LORD in all capitals.
When this Priest of the Most-High-God pronounces this special blessing on Abram, Abram starts calling on “The Lord GOD,” with altered capitals. This distinction is very very important and is missed by all but the most observant students. “The Lord,” without the capitals, comes from the Hebrew word “Adonay,” and it conveys the idea that “I am created for, and I am owned by you.” When you call someone “Lord,” then you are literally saying those two things, “I am created for you,” and “I am owned by you.” In Hebrew these names and words have very powerful meaning. In English they need that same reverence and meaning. Remember to watch for the difference between “LORD,” with all capitals and “Lord,” without the capitals. It is an important key to understanding what you read in the Holy Bible.
Notice what the King of Salem, Melchizedek, the Priest of the Most-High-God, revealed to Abram. Melchizedek taught Abram a new compound name for God. In Hebrew the title of God is pronounced “Elohim.” This Priest and King added an extra “El” which, in Hebrew made the pronunciation “El-Elyon,” making him the God of all gods. In English this is given as “The Most-High-God.” Second, the King and Priest’s blessing informed Abram that he was the property of this Most-High-God. That helps explain why Abram started calling on the “Lord GOD”, with changed capitals. Lastly, Melchizedek revealed to Abram that it was indeed the Most-High-God who gave him the great victory over his enemies.
In the Holy Bible, there is much in every name that is used. When it comes to the names of God there is very much in every name revealed. Abram was becoming a student of those names. Abram established a precedent when he met the King of Salem, Melchizedek, he tithed of all. A “tithe” means one tenth. Abram gave one tenth of all that he had to the The King of Salem, Melchizedek, the Priest of the Most-High-God. The Bible teaches that when we know the Most-High-God as our Prince of Peace, our King of Righteousness, and our High Priest, we should do the same.
After Abram learned all these things about the Most-High-God, possessor of heaven and earth, “The word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision.” We are learning to be very careful with the words of the Holy Bible, and so when the “word of the LORD” is referenced we are all the more careful. In this vision the word of the LORD said to Abram, “Fear not Abram: I am thy shield, and they exceeding great reward.” Now there is so much importance in the first two words which Abram spoke to the LORD God, that we will look at the reward which God spoke of in just a moment. Abram said, “Lord GOD,” notice the change in the capitals. If it followed the normal rule it would be “Lord LORD,” but that gets mixed up in English. To show this combination, the second “LORD” is simply shown with all capitals but spelled out as “GOD.” When Abram pronounced the Hebrew phrase it was, “Adonay Jehovah,” or, “I am created for you and you own me,” combined with the personal title “Jehovah,” meaning, “the Self Existent One.”
All of this was a tremendous lesson for Abram. A lesson about who the LORD God truly was. Now consider the reward that God mentioned. “And Abram said, “Lord GOD, what wilt thou give me, seeing I go childless, and the steward of my house is this Eliezer of Damascus?”
The LORD God had promised Abram that his seed would be as the sand of the sea, that is the reward that was mentioned. But Abram had no children, and he was getting very old. If Abram remained childless all his possessions would go to his steward and there would be no seed of Abram. The LORD God told Abram “He that shall come forth out of thine own bowels shall be thine heir.” And then again, “Look now toward heaven, and tell the stars, if thou be able to number them: and he said unto him, So shall thy seed be.”
Abram might have had a lot of trouble with that promise. He was old, and Sarai his wife was old. In all their years together they had not yet had a child. But Abram believed in the LORD; and the LORD God counted it to Abram for righteousness. Abram believed in the LORD when he said he would be the father of many nations. Abram’s faith pleased God. Faith still does please God. In fact without faith, it is impossible to please Him.
Now Sarai Abram’s wife bare him no children.
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