Then Abram went up from Egypt, he and his wife and all that he had, and Lot with him, to the South. Abram was very rich in livestock, in silver, and in gold. And he went on his journey from the South as far as Bethel, to the place where his tent had been at the beginning, between Bethel and Ai, to the place of the altar which he had made there at first. And there Abram called on the name of the Lord. (Genesis 13:1-4)
When the Bible says that “Abram went up out of Egypt,” it should be understood to mean that he left Egypt literally and, in a sense, spiritually. In light of what we have learned about Abram so far, it could be said that he left Egypt having revealed a personal flaw. Consequently, he had to go to Canaan and, ultimately, to Mount Moriah to face his greatest test. By the way, generations later, the nation of Israel left Egypt having revealed a similar flaw; a dependency on Egypt. As a consequence, they too had to go to the mountain — Mount Sinai because, remember, “What happens to the Patriarchs is a portent for the children.”
It can also be said that Abram left Egypt demonstrating a great strength. When he left Egypt, he was rich in livestock, silver and gold, some of which was acquired in Egypt. So among Abram’s strong qualities is the fact that he was not dependent upon riches as most others are. In fact, here is what Yeshua had to say concerning the matter:
“Assuredly, I say to you that it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. And again I say to you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” When His disciples heard it, they were greatly astonished, saying, “Who then can be saved?” But Jesus looked at them and said to them, “With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” (Matthew 19:23-26)
Notice that He didn’t say that it was impossible, just very difficult. And why is it so difficult? Because men tend to focus their eye on their riches. Their stuff has a hold on their heart and sometimes — most of the time — it edges God out. But Abram is an example of the exception. His eyes weren’t on his possessions and wealth but upon the One who bestows wealth and riches in more ways than temporal possessions. Solomon said:
“He who trusts in his riches will fall, but the righteous will flourish like foliage.” (Proverbs 11:28)
Most of us would rather have money than not but those who wish to serve God with all of their heart understand that the riches of this world will fail. Therefore let us store up treasures in heaven where nothing of this world has the power to cause it to fail. In this way, Messiah said, we are demonstrating that our hearts are given completely to our Father in Heaven and not the temporary luxuries of this life.
Blessings and Shalom,