On Genesis, Part 28: Speculative Altruism

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On Genesis, Part 28: Speculative Altruism

In our last presentation of this commentary on Genesis, which was titled A Father of Nations, we hope to have illustrated at least some of the cohesion between the promises of Yahweh God to Abraham which Moses had recorded in Genesis, and the interpretation and application of those promises in the ministry of Paul of Tarsus which are recorded in at least several of his epistles. Paul, having professed that his struggle was for the twelve tribes of Israel and the promises which Yahweh God had made to the fathers, which he interpreted “as it is written”, referencing the very promises to Abraham which are found in these chapters of Genesis, had clearly taught that the Gospel messages of the promises of redemption and mercy and eternal life in Christ were pertinent to the children of Israel alone [1]. Then, in relation to the covenants of God, Paul also explained that they too were exclusively for the children of Israel, an Israel which he himself had described as his “kinsmen according to the flesh” [2].

So Paul is certainly a witness to the exclusivity of the New Covenant with the children of Israel, and he had told the Romans, in an epistle which was demonstrably written before his arrest in 58 AD, “that your faith is spoken of throughout the whole world”, and later in that epistle, concerning the Gospel of Christ, he asked a rhetorical question and made another profession where we read: “17 So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. 18 But I say, Have they not heard? Yes verily, their sound went into all the earth, and their words unto the ends of the world.” [3] Here are two professions from Paul’s epistle to the Romans, that in his time the Gospel of Christ had already been disseminated throughout what he had perceived was the entire world. Yet at this time, there is absolutely no evidence of any Christians outside of the Roman world, and the other apostles, those who were not with Paul, were still in Antioch or with James in Jerusalem [4].

But in spite of the explicitly exclusive nature of the promises of God, on account of their inherent altruism, which is a part of their intrinsic character, at least most, if not all, White folks, meaning White European Christians, naturally want and even expect everyone in the world to be like them. So even Paul of Tarsus had made such a profession. In Acts chapter 26, after explaining the purpose of his ministry and professing that his labors were on behalf of the twelve tribes of Israel, Paul challenged King Agrippa II by asking him whether he believed the words of the prophets. The response to this by Agrippa was rather elusive, as it is translated in the Christogenea New Testament, where he said “In brief do you persuade me to be made a Christian?” But Paul, displaying his own inherent altruism, ignored the evasion and responded by saying “I would have prayed to God that in brief and at length not only you but also all those hearing me today are to be such as of this manner that also I am, except for these bonds.” So in spite of the fact that Agrippa was an Edomite, Paul professed a desire that all men be like him, except for the bonds of his imprisonment. [5]

But Paul’s altruism was not speculative. The “world” of his time was not the entire planet. Rather, in Luke chapter 2 we read, speaking of a census taken by the Romans shortly after the time of the birth of Christ: “1 And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed.” Paul could not have been ignorant of Luke’s words here, since of all the apostles, Luke was in Paul’s company most frequently, and had stayed with him right up to his end, as it is recorded in the final verses of the Book of Acts. So if the “world” of 2 BC was only that portion of the planet over which Caesar had the ability to tax, by using the word “world” in 57 AD Paul was making a reference to that same world which Luke described in his Gospel. However even that is not the true essence of the “world” of the Scriptures, even if it was the world of the apostles.

In Amos chapter 3 Yahweh informs the children of Israel that “You only have I known of all the families of the earth: therefore I will punish you for all your iniquities.” Those words, recorded around 750 BC, were spoken as Israel and much of Judah were about to be sent into Assyrian captivity, a process which was at least mostly completed by no later than 700 BC. Shortly after that time, after the failed siege of Jerusalem by the Assyrians in the days off Hezekiah, the prophet Isaiah wrote the last 26 chapters of his prophecy, in which Israel is being addressed in captivity. So in Isaiah chapter 60 we read, in part: “14 The sons also of them that afflicted thee shall come bending unto thee; and all they that despised thee shall bow themselves down at the soles of thy feet; and they shall call thee, The city of the LORD, The Zion of the Holy One of Israel. 15 Whereas thou hast been forsaken and hated, so that no man went through thee, I will make thee an eternal excellency, a joy of many generations. 16 Thou shalt also suck the milk of the [nations], and shalt suck the breast of kings: and thou shalt know that I the LORD am thy Saviour and thy Redeemer, the mighty One of Jacob.” Over the subsequent 300 years, the children of Israel came to dominate the whole world, the world which roughly corresponded with the world of Luke, in the form of the Scythians and Galatae, the Britons and others descended from the Phoenicians of the west, the Romans, Macedonian Greeks and Parthians. All of these people were descended from Israel, and none of them even existed at the time of Abraham, since they came from of his loins.

The “world” of the Scriptures is defined in the Wisdom of Solomon, where he addresses Yahweh and we read in chapter 18: “24 For in the long garment was the whole world, and in the four rows of the stones was the glory of the fathers graven, and thy Majesty upon the diadem of his head.” the “long garment” is the ephod of the high priests of Israel which contained the stones that represented each of the twelve tribes of Israel, and he wore a diadem inscribed with the name of Yahweh. This alone is the world which Christ had loved, and for which He came to offer salvation. So, earlier in that same chapter of Wisdom, where the children of Israel are contrasted to the Egyptians during the time of the Exodus, we read: “4 For they were worthy to be deprived of light and imprisoned in darkness, who had kept thy sons shut up, by whom the uncorrupt light of the law was to be given unto the world.” However once again, only the children of Israel were the “world” who would receive the law, and the law was only for Israel. Paul affirms this in Romans chapter 9 where he spoke of “… my kinsmen in regards to the flesh; 4 those who are Israelites, whose is the position of sons, and the honor, and the covenants, and the legislation, and the service, and the promises…” But this is also affirmed in the 147th Psalm, a Psalm written by the prophets Zechariah and Haggai some time around the building of the second temple in 520 BC, who wrote in part, glorifying God: “19 He sheweth his word unto Jacob, his statutes and his judgments unto Israel. 20 He hath not dealt so with any nation: and as for his judgments, they have not known them. Praise ye the LORD.” So the prophets were happy, gleeful, that only Israel had ever had the law.

In this respect, it is true, that the Gospel of Christ had indeed gone throughout the whole world in the time of Paul. But that world was already sown with both wheat and tares, as Christ had professed in His Gospel [6], and as we have seen in the first 15 chapters of Genesis the presence of Nephilim and other races which did not come from Noah or Adam, and who for that reason must have been related to the Nephilim. For that reason, Paul told his readers in the epistle to the Hebrews that those without correction are bastards, and not sons [7]. But that “world” clearly did not include any of the non-Adamic, or non-White races which had inhabited lands outside of the dominion of Caesar, under whom all the world of the apostles had been taxed.

So where they are never mentioned in Scripture, with very few exceptions, it is only a speculative sort of altruism by which men may imagine that these other races could possibly ever be “good”, and somehow because they are “good”, that they may also be included in the promises of God. So that speculative altruism is absolutely contrary to the Word of God. On the contrary, the promises of God are absolutely exclusive to the descendants of Abraham through Jacob-Israel. However, Israel did not inherit the promises because they are good. Rather, Israel received the promises on account of the promises which Yahweh God made to Abraham, which are unconditional. So for that cause, Israel shall be saved in spite of their sins. No man can claim to be “good” of his own accord, as David had written, addressing Yahweh in the 143rd Psalm: “2… for in thy sight shall no man living be justified.” With this Paul of Tarsus also agreed, where he wrote in Romans chapter 3, speaking in reference to Israel: “23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God”. With this the apostle John also agreed, where he wrote in chapter 1 of his first epistle, speaking in reference to God: “If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.” If the children of Israel cannot claim to have good in themselves, how can they claim to see good in the other races? Even Christ Himself had protested when a young man had called him “good”, informing the man that only God is good, as it is recorded in Luke chapter 18 [18:19].

[1 Acts chapter 26, Romans chapters 4, 15; 2 Romans chapter 9, Hebrews chapter 8 citing Jeremiah chapter 31; 3 Romans 1:8, 10:17-18; 4 Acts 6:2, 15:2-6, 16:4, et al.; 5 Acts 26:27-29; 6 Matthew chapter 13; 7 Hebrews 12:8.]

Now, as we proceed with Genesis chapter 18, first we shall once again see the exclusivity of the promises and covenants for the seed of Abraham, in spite of the fact that there are many other peoples and races in the “world”, and then we will see that even Abraham was compelled to engage in a sort of speculative altruism, when Yahweh was about to destroy Sodom.

1 And the Lord appeared unto him in the plains of Mamre: and he sat in the tent door in the heat of the day;

Once again, Abraham is dwelling among the oaks of Mamre, which were said in Genesis chapter 13 to have been in Hebron, a city which would later be located in central Judah. As we had explained it in part 23 of this commentary, titled The Wild West, Hebron was 20 miles south of Jerusalem, and perhaps 18 miles west of the current coastline of the Dead Sea, a sea whose coasts had changed in the events about to be described here in Genesis chapter 19. As we also explained in that presentation, Hebron was on a mountain ridge which extended from Megiddo in the north, all the way to Beersheba in the south, along the crest of which was a trail that Abraham had frequently travelled.

Now Yahweh has already appeared to Abraham at the oaks of Mamre, and he should certainly not be confused with the men of the verse which follows, who the account shall later reveal to be angels:

2 And he lift up his eyes and looked, and, lo, three men stood by him: and when he saw them, he ran to meet them from the tent door, and bowed himself toward the ground, 3 And said, My Lord, if now I have found favour in thy sight, pass not away, I pray thee, from thy servant: 4 Let a little water, I pray you, be fetched, and wash your feet, and rest yourselves under the tree: 5 And I will fetch a morsel of bread, and comfort ye your hearts; after that ye shall pass on: for therefore [or perhaps for that reason in this context] are ye come to your servant. And they said, So do, as thou hast said.

Three men: The word for men in verse 2 is translated from the plural form of the Hebrew word אנוש or enosh (# 582), which is a generic term describing a mortal man. While the term אדם or adam (# 120) only describes a particular race of man, the descendants of Adam, the term enosh was used to describe a man of any race, regardless of race. So it is not a disparaging term, and at diverse times in Scripture it was also used to describe Adamic men. Even if these men were angels, to Abraham they apparently appeared as men no different than any others.

Here the word translated as lord in verse 3 is the Hebrew term אדון or adon (# 136), which is a title that may be used to refer to any earthly lord or master, or as it is used here, as a term of respect. It is not the Tetragrammaton, יהוה or Yahweh, which appears here in verse 1, and it cannot justly be imagined in verse 2 that Abraham was addressing Yahweh, but rather, this man whom he called “lord” was only one of the three mortal men who had just appeared to him, and none of them in particular as he may have called any of them by the term adon. While the men accepted his hospitality, Abraham could not yet have known that they were actually angels.

“Pass not away … from thy servant”: the incredibly courteous Abraham, by modern standards, had begged the opportunity to accommodate these strangers on their journey, not knowing from where they had come nor to where they were going. This courtesy which Abraham offered these travellers was customary for men to extend to sojourners in the ancient world. Among the proverbs of ancient Egypt, from an inscription labeled The Instruction of Amen-Em-Opet, who had apparently lived in the 12th or 13th centuries BC, from the 29th chapter we read, in part: “Do not neglect a stranger (with) thy oil-jar, That it be doubled before thy brethren. God desires respect for the poor more than the honoring of the exalted.” [8] So the Egyptians thought the gods would bless them if they provided hospitality for strangers passing through their lands. Likewise, in Job chapter 31 we read: “32 The stranger did not lodge in the street: but I opened my doors to the traveller.” So in the law we read, first in Exodus chapter 22: “21 Thou shalt neither vex a stranger, nor oppress him: for ye were strangers in the land of Egypt.” Then in chapter 23: “9 Also thou shalt not oppress a stranger: for ye know the heart of a stranger, seeing ye were strangers in the land of Egypt.” Finally, in Leviticus chapter 19: “34 But the stranger that dwelleth with you shall be unto you as one born among you, and thou shalt love him as thyself; for ye were strangers in the land of Egypt: I am the LORD your God.”

However in all of these passages, the word translated as stranger is גרים or גר gerim (plural) or ger (singular), which denotes a sojourner. But not every race of men had a right or expectation to be able to sojourn among the children of Israel. So a ger, just like the Greeks had used the term ξένος or xenos, was a person of another nation who had a right or expectation of hospitality, by treaty or custom. In the context of ancient Israel, that right would have been extended to those of other Adamic nations, and especially and specifically, in the law, to the Egyptians and Aramaeans. Where the Israelites were explicitly commanded to drive out Canaanites, Nephilim, Kenites, and other races which were not of Noah, it is evident that the men of those races could never properly be counted as gerim, or sojourners.

Paul of Tarsus, in chapter 13 of his epistle to the Hebrews, seems to have had this very passage in mind where he wrote “1 Let brotherly love continue. 2 Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.” The same could be said where Lot accommodates what are apparently two of these same men, as it is described in Genesis chapter 19.

[8 Ancient Near Eastern Texts Relating to the Old Testament, 3rd edition, James Pritchard, editor, 1969, Harvard University Press, p. 424.]

Now it would not be unusual for Abraham to ask his 89-year-old wife to prepare the refreshments for these men, but it is unlikely that Sarah, having a handmaid in Hagar, and many other servants in her husband’s house, would have had to do the work by herself:

6 And Abraham hastened into the tent unto Sarah, and said, Make ready quickly three measures of fine meal, knead it, and make cakes upon the hearth.

Abraham himself, being a man, would do the more masculine chore of fetching meat for the occasion:

7 And Abraham ran unto the herd, and fetcht a calf tender and good, and gave it unto a young man; and he hasted to dress it.

This young man was also obviously one of Abraham’s many servants, who helped with other things besides merely dressing the calf:

8 And he took butter, and milk, and the calf which he had dressed, and set it before them; and he stood by them under the tree, and they did eat.

While the text does not explicitly indicate that the subject has changed, upon eating the men now address Abraham, who, as a courteous host, must have eaten along with them:

9 And they said unto him, Where is Sarah thy wife? And he said, Behold, in the tent. 10 And he said, I will certainly return unto thee according to the time of life; and, lo, Sarah thy wife shall have a son. And Sarah heard it in the tent door, which was behind him.

There is an idiom here in the Hebrew phrase כעת חיה or k’eth chayah, which is literally when (k) time (eth) lives (chayah), or according to notes found in the New American Standard Bible, “when the time revives”, which is also proper. From the context of the use of the phrase, where it appears four times in Scripture, in verses 10 and 14 of this chapter, and in 2 Kings chapter 4 in verses 16 and 17, it certainly seems to mean “at this time next year”, which is how the New American Standard Bible has translated it in each of those verses, although the King James Version has “time of life”, attempting to render it literally. Here the Greek Septuagint has a phrase which is close to the meaning of “at this time next year”, but which Brenton translated in a manner which is not quite literal, as “according to this period seasonably”. In this context, we would translate the same Greek phrase, κατὰ τὸν καιρὸν τοῦτον εἰς ὥρας, as “according to this time in a year”. In Greek, an ὥρα, the origin of our word hour, may be an hour, a season, or any indefinite period of time within a day, month or year. So the Greek of the Septuagint justifies the interpretation “according to the time of life” found in the New American Standard Bible.

Here, even if Abraham did not immediately recognize it, in the way in which the account is related it is nevertheless apparent that these men are angels, messengers from God, as this man knew that Abraham had a wife, and he also knew her name in the form in which Yahweh had only recently given it to Abraham. While it is possible that these men had learned about Sarah from Abraham himself, if that were the case then asking “where is Sarah thy wife” seems to be redundant. But in any event, the prophecy which is made here nevertheless repeats what Abraham had already heard from Yahweh in chapter 17, where Yahweh had told Abraham, in part: “21 But my covenant will I establish with Isaac, which Sarah shall bear unto thee at this set time in the next year.” So here the angel is a man who is speaking for Yahweh God. While we do not know how long it had been since Yahweh had made that promise to Abraham, since he had circumcised himself and his house immediately upon his having been instructed to do so, perhaps there was at least enough time for the men of his house to have healed from the wound. It could not have been too long, since Yahweh had already set the time frame of “this time next year” which the angel repeats here.

As a digression, one other aspect of this which we should note is that Abraham must have already been familiar with the custom of circumcision, in order to have circumcised his house immediately. The earliest mention of the practice of circumcision is found in an inscription on what is called the Naga-ed-Der Stelae which is dated to a period called the First Intermediate Period [9]. This period is a supposedly dark period of Egyptian history in the 22nd and 21st centuries BC, or until about two hundred years before Isaac was born.

So there we read: “An offering which the king and Anubis, Who is Upon His Mountain, He Who is In Ut, the Lord of the Holy Land, give: an invocation-offering to the Count, Seal-Bearer of the King of Lower Egypt, Sole Companion, and Lector Priest, honored with the great god, the Lord of Heaven, Uha, who says: ‘I was one beloved of his father, favored of his mother, whom his brothers and sisters loved. When I was circumcised, together with one hundred and twenty men, there was none thereof who hit out, there was none thereof who was hit, there was none (5) thereof who scratched, there was none thereof who was scratched. I was a commoner of repute, who lived on his (own) property, plowed with (his own) span of oxen, and sailed in his (own) ship, and not through that which I had found in the possession of my father, the honored Uha.’”

[9 Ancient Near Eastern Texts Relating to the Old Testament, p. 326, this source also notes that “references to circumcision are rare in ancient Egypt.]

As the accounts in these chapters of Genesis are related, Yahweh had never spoken to Sarah personally, and to this point He had only spoken to Abraham concerning Sarah, in chapter 17. So here it is also apparent that this message was delivered through an angel so that not only would Abraham have a second witness as to the will of Yahweh, but also so that Sarah could hear these words from Yahweh which had been uttered by this angel with her own ears. While Abraham himself may have already told her what he had been told by Yahweh concerning her having a child, that is not apparent here, as her reaction to the words of this messenger also seems to indicate.

11 Now Abraham and Sarah were old and well stricken in age; and it ceased to be with Sarah after the manner of women.

Sarah had already gone through menopause, which makes the prospects of a pregnancy even far less likely. But as we have already discussed in our presentation on Genesis chapter 17, A Father of Nations, in this regard the womb of Sarah is also a type for the Resurrection, as Yahweh God is demonstrating here that He can restore life from what is presumed to have been dead. That is what Paul of Tarsus had suggested where he described this event in Romans chapter 4, writing that Abraham had “believed even God, who quickeneth the dead” and referring to “the deadness of the womb of Sarah” later in the same passage [Romans 4:17, 19].

But, now, upon hearing this word for herself in what had been spoken by the angel, Sarah was incredulous, whereby it seems to be the first time that she had heard of it:

12 Therefore Sarah laughed within herself, saying, After I am waxed old shall I have pleasure, my lord being old also?

Here Sarah is recorded as having called Abraham by the title “lord”, which is once again the Hebrew word adon used as a title of respect. It is this example to which Peter had later referred, in chapter 3 of his second epistle, using Sarah as a model in order to illustrate the piety of Godly women.

While there is a lot of discussion in modern medical journals concerning the decline of sexual desire in women after the time of their menopause, where Sarah had asked “shall I have pleasure, my lord being old also” certainly indicates that such was her own experience. While we cannot attribute the reasons for that decline to Sarah exclusively, Abraham did go on to father several sons with another woman, Keturah, some time after the death of Sarah, which is recorded in Genesis chapter 25. However it is also apparent even after this time, that Sarah had still retained much of her beauty, as she is an object of desire once again, in the eyes of Abimelech the king of Gerar, as it is described in Genesis chapter 20.

13 And the Lord said unto Abraham, Wherefore did Sarah laugh, saying, Shall I of a surety bear a child, which am old? 14 Is any thing too hard for the Lord? At the time appointed I will return unto thee, according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son.

Here, where the popular Bible versions always shamefully substitute the title “Lord” for the name of Yahweh which is represented by the Tetragrammaton, the speaker is not the angel, but Yahweh Himself who is evidently still manifest to Abraham, although not necessarily to Sarah or to the three men. Furthermore, as we had discussed in relation to Genesis chapter 12 in part 22 of this commentary, titled The Sojourn, Abraham very likely addressed Yahweh by the title “God Almighty”, as we read in Exodus chapter 6 that it was that title by which he knew God. But Moses, writing this account years later, used the Hebrew form of the name Yahweh in order to describe it, as he had done in all of these accounts throughout Genesis.

Where in Genesis chapter 17 Yahweh had informed Abraham that he would have a son by Sarah, Abraham’s first reaction was also to laugh. So while Yahweh did not address that directly, He nevertheless acknowledged the reaction by informing Abraham that the son would be called Isaac, a word which is actually a phrase in Hebrew meaning he laughs or he laughed. However now Yahweh speaks to Abraham in rebuke of Sarah. So if Sarah did not hear the words, perhaps Abraham had inquired of her, but here it is not recorded. While it is not good to constantly conjecture, sometimes the terse manner in which Scripture is written leaves little choice but to make such deductions. So in any event, Sarah responds:

15 Then Sarah denied, saying, I laughed not; for she was afraid. And he said, Nay; but thou didst laugh.

Where we read “And he said”, the pronoun must refer to Abraham, so ostensibly our conjecture is correct, that after Yahweh had spoken to Abraham, there was resulting a dialogue between Abraham and Sarah, although the initial lines were not recorded here. The text in verse 12 says that Sarah had “laughed within herself”, so perhaps Abraham had known that she laughed only because Yahweh had informed him in verse 13. So because he had rebuked her when she denied it here, it is evident that Abraham believed the word of God even above his wife. With this, it is also highly unlikely that Sarah herself had ever heard the words of Yahweh, or she would not have been able to deny it, and with that we know that Yahweh was speaking to Abraham within the mind of Abraham, whereby the others could not hear what was being said. If Yahweh were one of the three men, then Sarah would have heard the words and feared insulting a guest in the presence of her husband.

These are now the final words in this record of the dialogue between the three men and Abraham and Sarah.

16 And the men rose up from thence, and looked toward Sodom: and Abraham went with them to bring them on the way.

Once again, the word for men here is a plural form of the Hebrew word enosh, which describes a mortal man. These men, being angels, cannot properly be called after the name of the patriarch Adam, since they would not have descended from Adam. So here they are referred to as enosh ostensibly because they appear to be men, and it has not yet been revealed that they are indeed angels. In spite of the fact that the account here in Genesis chapter 19 only mentions two angels as having appeared in Sodom, who were apparently two of these same men, that alone does not mean that all three of the men had not departed from Abraham. Where it describes the men as having departed here, all three of them must have departed, otherwise we would expect it to have specified.

The text here, that the men could look toward Sodom, also seems to indicate that Sodom was visible from Hebron, as Hebron lay on a high ridge, and Sodom was on the plain of the Jordan River, as it was described in Genesis chapter 13. That Abraham went with the men as they departed, “to bring them on the way”, does not mean that he would accompany them all the way to Sodom, but perhaps only as far as the road which they would travel to get there. This was also an ancient custom, of which we see a vestige in Acts chapter 21 where Paul was leaving Tyre on his journey to Jerusalem and we read: “5 And when we had accomplished those days, we departed and went our way; and they all brought us on our way, with wives and children, till we were out of the city: and we kneeled down on the shore, and prayed.”

Now, as Abraham is still in the company of the three men who are about to depart for Sodom, Yahweh God is described as having human attributes, as having a conversation with Himself in order to process His Own thoughts, however that is only a rhetorical device so that those thoughts may be presented to and understood by men:

17 And the Lord said, Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do; 18 Seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him? 19 For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment; that the Lord may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him.

While the reason is never stated explicitly, here we have an indication that Yahweh God had chosen Abraham, out of all of the men of the Genesis 10 nations, to carry on the line of Adam and His purpose in the earth because “I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way…” This Abraham must have done, and while Scripture does not record it, according to our chronology Abraham did not die until 1780 BC, while Jacob and Esau were born in 1795 BC. So Jacob and Esau must have had a chance to know their grandfather, being near fifteen years old when he died, and they must have heard the things which he had to say. But in spite of that, while Jacob had remained faithful to his parents, Esau did what was right in his own eyes, and failed to inherit the blessings of Abraham for that reason.

Where Roman Catholics and certain other Trinitarians insist that “the Lord”, the man called by the title adon here, is some sort of manifestation of a preincarnate Christ, the claim is patently absurd, since to be preincarnate one cannot be incarnate at the same time. The word incarnate comes from the Latin preposition in, meaning in, into, on, upon, or among, a word which has been adopted into English, and the Latin noun carnis, which is simply and literally meat or flesh. This word was indirectly adopted into English in words such as carnivore, which is a meat-eater. In Italian, Spanish, Portuguese and Romanian today, the word for meat is carne. So a man cannot be preincarnate and be in the flesh, while these three men all had fleshly bodies, they all ate and drank of fleshly food, and to be incarnate literally means to be in a fleshly body. Yahweh God had no flesh, until He took upon Himself the flesh of Abraham in the person of Yahshua Christ as Paul had explained in chapter 2 of his epistle to the Hebrews. There, Paul had also denied that God had ever taken upon Himself the nature of angels.

So we shall read that passage from Hebrews chapter 2: “11 For both He sanctifying and those being sanctified are all sprung from one [from the seed of Abraham], for which reason He is not ashamed to call them brethren, 12 saying: ‘I will announce Your name to My brethren; in the midst of the assembly I will praise You.’ 13 And again: ‘I will be confident in Him.’ And again: ‘Behold, I and the children which Yahweh has given me.’ 14 Therefore, since the children have taken part in flesh and blood, He also in like manner took part in the same, that through death He would annul him having the power of death, that is, the False Accuser, 15 and He would release them, as many as whom in fear of death, throughout all of their lives were subject as slaves. 16 For surely not that of messengers [or angels] has He taken upon Himself, but He has taken upon Himself of the offspring of Abraham, 17 from which He was obliged in all respects to become like the brethren, that He would be a compassionate and faithful high priest of the things pertaining to Yahweh to make a propitiation for the sins of the people. 18 In what He Himself has suffered being tested, He is able to help those being tested.”

Now, what Yahweh meant by “that thing which I do” is hinted at, as He is still portrayed as having conversed with Himself, but He must have also related at least some of these words to Abraham, as Abraham is portrayed as having responded after the three men finally depart from him. If all of these words were spoken to Abraham, then of course the question represented in verses 17 and 18 would have been rhetorical.

20 And the Lord said, Because the cry of Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and because their sin is very grievous; 21 I will go down now, and see whether they have done altogether according to the cry of it, which is come unto me; and if not, I will know.

Once again, Yahweh God is described as if He had human attributes, having to “go down” to examine Sodom, from the perspective of a man. This is a literary device but in reference to God it is not to be interpreted literally, and it is used frequently throughout Scripture. For example, in Genesis chapter 46 Yahweh is described as having said to Jacob that “I will go down with thee into Egypt….” From Hebron, a man would also have to “go down” to Sodom, language which we see throughout Scripture and especially of travels to and from Jerusalem, or to and from the sea, because Hebron was high on a ridge, the same ridge upon which sat Jerusalem, and Sodom was low in elevation, on the plain near the river. The surface of the modern Dead Sea is said to be the lowest place on earth, its shores having an elevation of nearly 1,400 feet below the sea level of the surrounding oceans. [10]

[10 Elevation, National Geographic, https://education.nationalgeographic.org/resource/elevation/, accessed September 1st, 2023.]

22 And the men turned their faces from thence, and went toward Sodom: but Abraham stood yet before the Lord.

So the men have departed, and the word for men is once again the plural form of enosh. But Yahweh, who could not ever be described with the term enosh, or mortal man, has not yet left Abraham.

23 And Abraham drew near, and said, Wilt thou also destroy the righteous with the wicked?

So from this, Abraham had deduced that Yahweh was intent on destroying Sodom and Gomorrah, and Yahweh must have allowed that deduction, if He did not tell him explicitly. Later, Abraham was called a friend of God, as we read in chapter 2 of the epistle of James to the twelve tribes scattered abroad: “23 And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.” Writing that, James must have been citing Isaiah chapter 41 where we read: “8 But thou, Israel, art my servant, Jacob whom I have chosen, the seed of Abraham my friend.” So this situation evokes the words of Christ found in John chapter 15 where He told His disciples: “15 Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you.” Therefore the faithful who are obedient to the will of God, they may be considered His friends, but even when they are unfaithful, they shall have no choice but to be His servants, either for better or for worse.

Abraham must have a had altruism as an inherent characteristic, as one must have altruism in order to even invite sojourners as guests into one’s home. Inviting such guests, one must expect the guests to have the same general respect and courtesy which he is being granted by the host. But now, as Abraham learns of the fate of Sodom, he displays a sort of speculative altruism, imagining that there may be men among the Sodomites who were sufficiently righteous to the point where all the sinners in Sodom would be spared for their benefit.

Here Abraham begins to engage in bargaining with Yahweh on account of his own speculative altruism, as he imagines that there are righteous men in Sodom and the other cities of the plain, although with the exception of Lot, there is no indication in the text that he had actually even known anything of their actual character. So in his attempt to bargain with God for the lives of whatever few righteous men may or may not have been in Sodom, Abraham also exhibits great humility. This is evident because Yahweh had already promised Abraham that his own descendants would inherit all of this land, which includes all of the land of Sodom and the other cities of the plain. Yet Abraham, rather than having been greedy for himself, would rather have seen them all live on account of any righteous men who may have dwelt in those cities.

So he begins his bargain with God on behalf of men whom he could only have speculated may have been righteous:

24 Peradventure there be fifty righteous within the city: wilt thou also destroy and not spare the place for the fifty righteous that are therein? 25 That be far from thee to do after this manner, to slay the righteous with the wicked: and that the righteous should be as the wicked, that be far from thee: Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?

Doing this, Abraham also imagined that he himself could know the judgment of God. We must remember that except for whatever Yahweh may have conveyed to Abraham over the twenty-four years prior to this event, as he was called at 75 and now he is 99 years of age, Abraham never had a Bible to read, and he was raised and lived as a pagan up to the point when he was called. Therefore a lot of his understanding would still be grounded in that pagan perspective up to this point in his life, and Yahweh treats him according to what he knows.

However the judgment of Yahweh, which Abraham could not yet have known, does inform us of times when the righteous are cut off along with the wicked, even if they are of the seed of Abraham himself. Of this we find an example in Ezekiel chapter 21, where even the prophet is told to sigh with bitterness because of the occasion, and we read: “1 And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, 2 Son of man, set thy face toward Jerusalem, and drop thy word toward the holy places, and prophesy against the land of Israel, 3 And say to the land of Israel, Thus saith the LORD; Behold, I am against thee, and will draw forth my sword out of his sheath, and will cut off from thee the righteous and the wicked. 4 Seeing then that I will cut off from thee the righteous and the wicked, therefore shall my sword go forth out of his sheath against all flesh from the south to the north: 5 That all flesh may know that I the LORD have drawn forth my sword out of his sheath: it shall not return any more. 6 Sigh therefore, thou son of man, with the breaking of thy loins; and with bitterness sigh before their eyes.”

So Yahweh responds to Abraham’s plea, but of course, Yahweh himself must know already whether there were any righteous men in Sodom and the other cities of the plain. Several cities are destroyed, but Sodom is the focus of Abraham’s pleas ostensibly because that is where Lot was, and it is where the three men were headed:

26 And the Lord said, If I find in Sodom fifty righteous within the city, then I will spare all the place for their sakes. 27 And Abraham answered and said, Behold now, I have taken upon me to speak unto the Lord, which am but dust and ashes:

Here Abraham offers a statement of humility, acknowledging that he is only dust and ashes, because in pleading for the lives of the righteous he must endeavor to bargain with God. So then he continues:

28 Peradventure there shall lack five of the fifty righteous: wilt thou destroy all the city for lack of five? And he said, If I find there forty and five, I will not destroy it. 29 And he spake unto him yet again, and said, Peradventure there shall be forty found there. And he said, I will not do it for forty’s sake.

Ostensibly, Abraham keeps bargaining, because he has not yet gotten the answer he had hoped for. If there were forty righteous men in the city, then Yahweh would not have answered “peradventure”, but rather, as His answers also indicate, He would have instead agreed not to destroy the city. So the bargaining continues, because Abraham does not want to see the city destroyed even if it had a mere handful of righteous men:

30 And he said unto him, Oh let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak: Peradventure there shall thirty be found there. And he said, I will not do it, if I find thirty there. 31 And he said, Behold now, I have taken upon me to speak unto the Lord: Peradventure there shall be twenty found there. And he said, I will not destroy it for twenty’s sake.

If there were twenty righteous men, Abraham may have received the answer he expected. So Yahweh tolerates one final plea:

32 And he said, Oh let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak yet but this once: Peradventure ten shall be found there. And he said, I will not destroy it for ten’s sake.

So if Sodom had contained but ten righteous men, which is only nine besides the righteous Lot, as the apostle Peter later describes him in his second epistle, then Yahweh God would not have had Sodom destroyed. Yet even Lot had evidently tormented his own soul just by living in Sodom, as Peter wrote in chapter 2 of that epistle, after having made a reference to the delivering of Noah through the Flood: “6 and the cities of Sodom and Gomorra burning to ashes He had condemned to destruction, having been set forth for an example of those who are going to be impious, 7 and He delivered the righteous Lot who had been oppressed by the licentious conduct of the lawless 8 (for with sights and reports the righteous one dwelling among them day by day tormented a righteous soul with their lawless deeds)…”

Now Yahweh departs from Abraham, as it is described, although Yahweh being God cannot really depart as a man departs, so we read in the final verse of this chapter:

33 And the Lord went his way, as soon as he had left communing with Abraham: and Abraham returned unto his place.

The Hebrew word translated as communing here, דבר or dabar, in this form literally means speaking.

There is no indication that Yahweh had interrupted Abraham here, and perhaps Abraham merely stopped at ten, taking it for granted that there may be ten righteous men in such a large city. But when we proceed with chapter 19 of Genesis, it shall readily become evident that the speculative altruism which Abraham had exhibited in his pleas for the righteous was all in vain, because not one righteous man except for Lot had been found among the Sodomites, never mind ten, and for that reason Lot and his daughters had been preserved, but not even his daughters’ husbands, and in her care for the things of this world, he had even lost his wife. However Abraham’s pleas on behalf of the righteous are nonetheless a testament to his own noble character.

Today, there is an altruism present among White Christians, at least most of whom are indeed the literal genetic seed of Abraham, and their altruism is just as speculative, or even more so, but it is not as noble as the altruism of Abraham. It is not as noble, because all of the promises of God are for Abraham alone, and for his offspring, his literal, genetic descendants. But in the altruism of these modern Christians, they presume that Yahweh God will accept other races, who are not of Abraham, as Abraham’s seed simply because they may accept some baptism ritual and claim to believe in some Jesus, things which are contrary to Scripture. It may be safe to have altruism towards people of your own nation, as there are common elements of law, custom, and religious beliefs and common notions of God, piety and mutual respect. But it is not safe to assume that aliens share those same notions and share the same values. It is pure speculation to imagine that they even have a capacity to think similarly or have any notion of fear for the same God that Christians reverence, even if they profess to believe in a “Jesus”, that does not mean they understand the faith or His Word, and it can be demonstrated that they certainly do not. As we read in Jeremiah chapter 17: “9 The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?”

So these altruistic White Christians find one or perhaps a few negros whom they claim from their own perspective are “good”, and imagining that they may be saved, they further claim that the entire race of negros may therefore be redeemed, regardless of all of their grievous sins. But of course, in their hypocrisy those same White Christians still lock their doors at night, and safeguard their other belongings with alarms and cameras and padlocks and even with guns. But once upon a time, and until recently, even in my own life experience, in an all-White society none of those things were even necessary to protect one’s belongings, and it was rare in most places if anything was ever stolen.

So while these modern Christians imagine that negros are just like them, and in their altruistic view of them they imagine that negros share the same values, their actions on the other hand are hypocritical, as they are aware that their property will be stolen if it is left unlocked and unguarded. Even worse, their children are routinely beaten and raped by those same negros when they are left together unattended. But in the altruism which Abraham had, he had only wanted to save those who were already righteous, and did not imagine that he could redeem or change those who were inherently wicked. Christ came to redeem sinners, but He promises to forever destroy the wicked. Christ did not come to save the world that is, but rather, He came to save the world which He had created, and that is the only world which He loves: the children of Israel represented by the twelve stones on the breastplate of the high priest, which Solomon in his Wisdom had described as the world. As we shall see when we discuss Genesis chapter 19, the Sodomites were chasing after strange flesh, and so are modern Christians.

Only Yahweh God can understand the motives and minds of either man or beast, and only He can read their hearts, as to why they may make a certain profession or behave in a certain way at a particular time. Yet, as we have said, in His sight no living man can be justified, as David wrote in the 143rd Psalm, and as Paul wrote in Romans chapter 3, “23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God”, so the children of Israel are not saved on account of their own righteousness. Rather, they are saved on account of the Word of Yahweh God as He keeps the promises made to the fathers, which is the purpose of the Gospel as stated in Luke chapter 2, Romans chapter 15 and elsewhere. In Acts chapter 1, before His ascension, the apostles had made inquiry of Christ and we read “6 When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel?” Where His reply is recorded, He never denied that would happen, but only denied them the time when it would happen. However, neither Abraham nor the apostles ever imagined that it would happen to negros, or that it would include negros, or any other race, because that is not what the fathers were promised. Abraham had faith, but it certainly was not in negros.

In the end, as Christ Himself explains it in Matthew chapter 25, there are only sheep and goats, they are separated on sight, and all the sheep are set on the right hand of the Son of Man. Of these, we read: “34 Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.” But of the goats who are set on His left hand: “41 Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels.” As Christ had said earlier, in Matthew chapter 15, “24 … I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel.” So there the identity of the sheep is defined, as it also is throughout the Old Testament. In Jeremiah chapter 23 we read: “1 Woe be unto the pastors that destroy and scatter the sheep of my pasture! saith the LORD.” That woe shall come upon all pastors who bring negroes and other aliens into the congregations of Yahweh in Christ.

Speculative altruism always fails, and even if Abraham had noble intentions, he is also a primary example of that.

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