Abraham-God's Brave Explorer: Genesis 11-25
by Kay Arthur
Abraham—God’s Brave Explorer
by Kay Arthur and Janna Arndt
Searching for Truth— A Bible Study You Can Do!
1. Abram’s Brave Adventure
2. A Blood Covenant
3. Abram’s New Name
4. Fire and Brimstone
5. Abraham Celebrates
6. Abraham’s Test of Faith
Abram’s Brave Adventure
“All right! The SUV is packed and ready to go. Uh-oh, where’s Sam? Sam, where are you? Come on, boy, we’re ready to go. Watch out—here he comes! Quick! Move out of the way! Whew—just in time. Sam, settle down, boy. You almost ran over Molly.
“Okay, let’s pile in the SUV and hit the road. Our first stop is St. Louis, Missouri, where many of the pioneers arrived from their homes to get ready for the adventure of their life. So pull out God’s map—the Bible—and as we head west for our big adventure, let’s find out about God’s brave explorer. WHO is Abram and WHY did he leave his home? Was it for the spirit of adventure or a better life, like it was for some of our pioneers? Let’s open God’s map to find out.”
Following God’s Brave Explorer
We are on our way. As you open God’s map to discover WHO Abram is, WHAT is the first thing you need to do? Do you know? You’ve got it! Pray. Bible study should always begin with prayer.
We need God to be our Wagon Master as we begin our journey on the Oregon Trail. The wagon master was in charge of the entire wagon train. He made all the decisions about whether to go on or stop. He also decided which trail they should take. His word was law!
Just like the wagon master took care of the pioneers on their journey, we need God to direct us and teach us by His Spirit as we begin our journey in His Word, so that we can understand what He says and make sure we handle His Word accurately. Let’s pray, and then we can start reading God’s map.
Heavenly Father, we praise You for being our Shepherd who leads us as we study Your Word. Open our eyes so that we can see truth as we study Abram’s life. Open our hearts so that we can understand what Your Word means. Help us to apply all that we learn to our lives so that we can be more like Jesus. We want to please You. We love You and ask these things in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Abram’s life begins in the Book of Genesis, which is known as the book of beginnings. So as we start our research on our brave explorer, we need to put ourselves in context by reviewing the Book of Genesis.
WHAT is context? Context is the setting in which something is found. This is very important in Bible study. Context is a combination of two words: con, which means “with,” and text, which means “what is written.” So when you look for context in the Bible, you look at the verses and chapters surrounding the passage you are studying, such as looking at the whole Book of Genesis, as well as seeing how the passage fits into the whole Bible.
Context also includes:
The place something happens. (This is geographical context, such as knowing where Abram lived. Did he live in the land of Canaan or in the United States?)
The time in history an event happens. (This is historical context, such as, did Abram live before Noah and the flood or after the flood?)
The customs of a group of people. (This is cultural context. For instance, did Abram live in a tent or in a house like we do today?)
If you have already studied Genesis Part One, God’s Amazing Creation, and Genesis Part Two, Digging Up the Past, then you have discovered for yourself that Genesis is a book of generations. A generation is what is brought into being. It shows where something or someone came from. A generation shows the order of birth, the family history.
In Genesis 2:4 we see the generations of the heavens and the earth. In Genesis 5:1 we see the generations of Adam. We see Noah’s generations in Genesis 6:9; Shem, Ham, and Japheth’s generations in Genesis 10:1; and Shem’s generations in Genesis 11:10. WHERE does Abram fit into these generations? Let’s find out.
Turn to your Observation Worksheets on page 157. Observation Worksheets are pages that have the Bible text printed out for you to use as you do your research on the life of Abram.
Now read Genesis 11:24-32 and mark every reference to Abram in a special way by coloring Abram blue, along with any pronouns that also refer to Abram. WHAT are pronouns? Check out Max and Molly’s map below.
Pronouns are words that take the place of nouns. A noun is a person, place, or thing. A pronoun stands in for a noun! Here’s an example: “Molly and Max are heading west to travel the Oregon Trail. They will have to drive about 3000 miles from their home to get to the end of the trail.” The word they is a pronoun because it takes the place of Molly’s and Max’s names in the second sentence. It is another word we use to refer to Molly and Max.
Watch for these other pronouns when you are marking people:
I you he she
me yours him her
mine his hers
Now that you have marked Abram, go back and mark one of the key phrases in the Book of Genesis, “these are the generations of,” by putting a blue box around this key phrase.
Great! Now let’s ask some questions. An explorer always gets the facts by asking lots of questions before he or she begins a journey.
Let’s see WHAT we can learn about Abram and his family by asking the 5 W’s and an H questions. What are the 5 W’s and an H? They are the WHO, WHAT, WHERE, WHEN, WHY, and HOW questions.
Asking WHO helps you find out:
WHO wrote this?
WHOM are we reading about?
To WHOM was it written?
WHO said this or did that?
WHAT helps you understand:
WHAT is the author talking about?
WHAT are the main things that happen?
WHERE helps you learn:
WHERE did something happen?
WHERE did they go?
WHERE was this said?
When we discover a WHERE, we double-underline the WHERE in green.
WHEN tells us about time. We mark it with a green clock like this:
WHEN tells us:
WHEN did this event happen or WHEN will it happen?
WHEN did the main characters do something? It helps us to follow the order of events.
WHY asks questions like:
WHY did he say that?
WHY did they go there?
WHY did this happen?
HOW lets you figure out things like:
HOW is something to be done?
HOW did people know something had happened?
Now get the facts.
WHOSE generations are these in Genesis 11:27?
Looking back at Genesis 11:10, we see that Terah came from the generations of Shem. Let’s find out WHO is in Terah’s family tree.
Genesis 11:27 WHO did Terah become the father of?
Genesis 11:27 WHO did Haran become the father of?
Genesis 11:29 WHO was Abram’s wife?
Genesis 11:30 WHAT do we see about Sarai?
Genesis 11:31 WHERE did Terah’s family live?
Genesis 11:31 WHERE did Terah settle his family?
Genesis 11:32 WHAT happened to Terah in Haran?
Now go back and read Genesis 11:27-29 again so you can fill in part of Terah’s family tree below. We’ll complete his family tree as we continue our journey in God’s Word.
Wow! Look at all you have discovered from just a small portion of God’s map! You are going to make quite an explorer!
Before we arrive in St. Louis, there is one more thing you need to do. A brave explorer for God needs to be prepared for the journey that God has planned for him or her, and the only way to be ready for whatever God has for you is to know His Word. Hiding God’s Word in your heart will keep you on the right road when the going gets tough and will give you hope as you put your faith in God.
As part of your journey across the wilderness, you need to learn a memory verse each week so that by the time you arrive in Oregon City, Oregon, you will be fully equipped for whatever God has planned for your life.
To discover this week’s verse, use your navigational skills to find the correct path in the maze below. Then fill in the blanks with the correct words on the lines after the maze.
Way to go! Now practice saying it aloud three times in a row, three times every day!