Genesis chapter 14 Star Chart: Sodom and Gomorrah "served Chedorlaomer" "twelve years" and "in the thirteenth year they rebelled" (14:4) "And in the fourteenth year came Chedorlaomer, and the kings that were with him" (14:5) "And they took Lot, Abram's brother's son, who dwelt in Sodom, and his goods, and departed" (14:12). This is at the 14° year mark. Clockwise from when they took Lot till Abraham's "return from the slaughter of Chedorlaomer, and of the kings that were with him" (14:17) is 346° hours or 14.4 days (346° hours/24 = 14.4 days). Abram's army marched 200 miles north, from the southern Dead Sea to Dan and Damascus in the north; and back south 200 miles to the southern Dead Sea, in two weeks, so Abram's army averaged about 28 miles per day.

Abram Defeated Four Kings
and Rescued Lot in Two Weeks

14:1 And it came to pass in the days of Amraphel king of Shinar(Orion), Arioch king of Ellasar(Auriga), Chedorlaomer king of Elam (Pollux), and Tidal king of nations (Castor);

Amraphel] King of Shinar, very generally accepted as the Hebrew reproduction of the name Hammurabi, king of Babylonia about 2150 b.c. (?). On the assumption of this identification it has been conjectured that the last syllable of the name should be “-i” instead of “-el,” i.e. Amraphi. For Shinar, see note on Genesis 10:10 and Genesis 11:2.

Hammurabi is famous as the king who finally freed his kingdom from the yoke of the Elamites, who united northern and southern Babylonia under one rule, and extended his conquests as far west as Palestine. Many cuneiform documents, belonging to his reign and referring to his government, have been discovered and deciphered, most remarkable and important of all being his Code of Laws1[15].

[15] Discovered in Dec. 1901 and Jan. 1902 by M. Le Morgan at Susa. See Driver’s Exodus, Appendix III.

Arioch king of Ellasar] Possibly the same as Rim-sin who is said to be referred to in an ancient Sumerian record as Eri-Aku, son of Kudur-Mabug, king of Larsa, and a contemporary of Hammurabi. Ellasar is clearly the Babylonian town Larsa, which is identified with the ruins of the modern Senkereh on the E. bank of the Euphrates in S. Babylonia.

We meet with the name of Arioch in a Babylonian court-official (Daniel 2:15); and as a “king of the Elymaeans,” a vassal of Nebuchadnezzar (Jdt 1:6).

Chedorlaomer] King of Elam. The name has not hitherto been identified in the history of Western Asia. In its formation, however, it is genuinely Elamite, i.e. Kudur = “servant,” and Lagamar = an Elamite deity. The supremacy of Elam over all that region of Western Asia about the time of Hammurabi is attested by the ancient documents. For Elam, see note on Genesis 10:22. It is the country called in the Assyrian Elamtu, and in the Greek Elymais, north of the Persian Gulf and east of the Lower Tigris. Its capital was Susa, which appears in the classical form of Susiana. On the overthrow of Elam by the Persians, see Jeremiah 49:34-39.

Tidal king of Goiim] The attempts which have been made to identify Tidal have not yet been successful. But there is no reason to suppose that it is a fictitious name; and future research may bring his name to light. Goiim is the regular Hebrew word for “nations,” and therefore seems to be very improbable as the name of a country or city. It may have been substituted by a Hebrew copyist for some unfamiliar proper name resembling it in pronunciation, or in shape of letters. Thus Sir Henry Rawlinson’s conjecture of Gutim has very generally found favour. The Guti were a people often mentioned in the inscriptions, living in the region of Kurdistan. Sayce suggests that Goiim may be correct as the Hebrew translation of the Assyrian Ummanmanda, the peoples, or nomad hordes, that constantly swept through those regions.

2 That these made war with Bera king of Sodom (Orion), and with Birsha king of Gomorrah (Auriga), Shinab king of Admah (Pollux), and Shemeber king of Zeboiim (Castor), and the king of Bela (Cepheus), which is Zoar.

3 All these were joined together in the vale of Siddim, which is the salt sea (Milky Way).

4 Twelve years they served Chedorlaomer, and in the thirteenth year they rebelled (Castor's bow touches line).

5 And in the fourteenth year came Chedorlaomer (Pollux), and the (Orion, Castor and Auriga) kings that were with him, and smote the (Gemini) Rephaims in Ashteroth Karnaim, and the (Gemini) Zuzims in Ham, and the (Gemini) Emins in Shaveh Kiriathaim,

6 And the (Gemini) Horites in their mount Seir, unto Elparan, which is by the wilderness.

7 And they returned, and came to Enmishpat, which is Kadesh, and smote all the country of the (Gemini) Amalekites, and also the (Gemini) Amorites, that dwelt in Hazezontamar.

8 And there went out the king of Sodom (Orion), and the king of Gomorrah (Auriga), and the king of Admah (Pollux), and the king of Zeboiim (Castor), and the king of Bela (the same is Zoar;) (Cepheus) and they joined battle with them in the vale of Siddim (Milky Way);

9 With Chedorlaomer the king of Elam (Pollux), and with Tidal king of nations (Castor), and Amraphel king of Shinar (Orion), and Arioch king of Ellasar (Auriga); four kings with five.

10 And the vale of Siddim was full of slimepits (green Milky Way); and the (Gemini) kings of Sodom and Gomorrah fled, and fell there; and they that remained fled to the (red radius) mountain.

Slime pits were either petroleum or naphtha. The "rock poured me out rivers of oil" (Job 29:6). Being ignited by lightning, they burned for many years causing the land to sink . Thus the Dead Sea is 1300 feet below the Mediterranean. This is why Abraham moved south, since the vicinity was unfit for habitation. The "smoke went up as the smoke of a furnace" (Gen. 19:27-28).

11 And they took all the goods of (solar) Sodom and (lunar) Gomorrah, and all their victuals, and went their way.

12 And they took Lot, Abram's brother's son, who dwelt in Sodom, and his goods, and departed.

being a neighbour of the men of Sodom, and a sojourner among them, he partakes of their punishment; and this was a just correction of him for choosing to dwell among such a people: and they took

13 And there came one that had escaped (Orion), and (red radius) told Abram (Auriga) the Hebrew; for he dwelt in the plain of Mamre the Amorite, brother of Eshcol, and brother of Aner: and these were confederate with Abram.

14 And when Abram heard that his brother was taken captive, he armed his trained (Gemini) servants, born in his own house, three hundred and eighteen (Milky Way), and pursued them unto Dan (160 miles away, so Abram travelled about 23 miles per day for two weeks).

Old Jewish commentators explained 318 by pointing out that the numerical value of the Heb. letters of the name “Eliezer,” Abram’s steward (Genesis 15:2), was 318. In modern times Winckler has found some supporters for the astronomical explanation, that the moon is visible for 318 days in the year; and that the number of Abram’s retainers must, therefore, indicate that the story of Abram is blended with the zodiac.

15 And he divided himself against them (Ophiuchus and Hercules), he and his servants, by (black zodiac) night, and smote them, and pursued them unto Hobah, which is on the left hand of Damascus.

fell upon them unawares, when some were asleep in their beds, and others drunk, as Josephus (g) relates; and who also says, it was on the fifth night after Abram had knowledge of what had happened at Sodom:
and smote them, and pursued them unto Hoba, which is on the left hand of Damascus; a famous city in Syria; it was in later times the metropolis of that country, Isaiah 7:8; and was most delightfully situated in a vale; see Gill on Jeremiah 49:25; according to Josephus (h) it was built by Uz, the son of Aram and grandson of Shem, and some say (i) by Shem himself, and that it is to this day called Sem in the Saracene language, and lay between Palestine and Coelesyria; on the left hand of this city, or on the north of it, as all the Targums paraphrase it, lay a place called Hoba, and is completed to be eighty miles from Dan, from whence he pursued them hither, after he had discomfited them there.

(g) Antiqu. l. 1. c. 10. sect. 1.((h) lbid. c. 6. sect. 4. (i) Baumgarten. Peregrinatio, l. 3. c. 4. p. 111.

16 And he brought back all the goods, and also brought again his brother Lot, and his goods, and the (Gemini) women also, and the (Gemini) people.

17 And the king of Sodom (Orion) went out to meet him (Auriga) after his return from the slaughter of Chedorlaomer, and of the kings that were with him, at the valley of Shaveh, which is the king's dale.

18 And Melchizedek king of Salem (Orion) brought forth (solar golden) bread and (lunar red) wine: and he was the priest of the most high God.

19 And he blessed him, and said, Blessed be Abram of the most high God, possessor of heaven and earth:

20 And blessed be the most high God, which hath delivered thine enemies into thy hand. And he gave him tithes of all.

21 And the king of Sodom (Orion) (red radius) said unto Abram (Auriga), Give me the persons, and take the goods to thyself.

22 And Abram (Orion)(red radius) said to the king of Sodom (Auriga), I have lift up mine (Orion) hand unto the Lord, the most high God, the possessor of heaven and earth,

23 That I will not take from a (lunar crescent) thread even to a (lunar crescent) shoelatchet, and that I will not take any thing that is thine, lest thou shouldest say, I have made Abram rich:

24 Save only that which the young (Gemini) men have eaten, and the portion of the (Orion, Auriga and Perseus) men which went with me, Aner, Eshcol, and Mamre; let them take their portion.

Should Christians Fight and Kill in Self-Defense?

The clear answer from Scripture is "Yes." Those who won't fight for their rights, and those of their family, lose their rights.

1.) Genesis 14:14 says, "when Abram heard that his brother was taken captive, he armed his trained servants, born in his own house, three hundred and eighteen, and pursued them unto Dan. And he divided himself against them, he and his servants, by night, and SMOTE THEM, and pursued them unto Hobah, which is on the left hand of Damascus. And he brought back all the goods, and also brought again his brother Lot, and his goods, and the women also, and the people."

2.) Exodus 15:3-4 says, "The Lord is a MAN OF WAR: the Lord is his name. Pharaoh's chariots and his host hath he cast into the sea: his chosen captains also are drowned in the Red sea.

3.) Exodus 17:8-16 says, "Then came Amalek, and fought with Israel in Rephidim. And Moses said unto Joshua, Choose us out men, and go out, FIGHT with Amalek: to morrow I will stand on the top of the hill with the rod of God in mine hand. So Joshua did as Moses had said to him, and FOUGHT with Amalek: and Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill. And it came to pass, when Moses held up his hand, that Israel prevailed: and when he let down his hand, Amalek prevailed. But Moses hands were heavy; and they took a stone, and put it under him, and he sat thereon; and Aaron and Hur stayed up his hands, the one on the one side, and the other on the other side; and his hands were steady until the going down of the sun. And Joshua DISCOMFITED Amalek and his people with the edge of the sword. And the Lord said unto Moses, Write this for a memorial in a book, and rehearse it in the ears of Joshua: for I will utterly put out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven. And Moses built an altar, and called the name of it Jehovahnissi: For he said, Because the Lord hath sworn that the Lord will have WAR with Amalek from generation to generation."

4.) Joshua 6:2-3,17,21-22 says, "the Lord said unto Joshua, See, I have given into thine hand Jericho, and the king thereof, and the mighty men of valour. And ye shall compass the city, all ye men of war, and go round about the city once. Thus shalt thou do six days.... And the city shall be accursed, even it, and all that are therein, to the Lord: only Rahab the harlot shall live, she and all that are with her in the house, because she hid the messengers that we sent.... And they UTTERLY DESTROYED all that was in the city, both man and woman, young and old, and ox, and sheep, and ass, with the edge of the sword. But Joshua had said unto the two men that had spied out the country, Go into the harlot's house, and bring out thence the woman, and all that she hath, as ye sware unto her."

If anyone today is inclined to feel that this war was unjust, let him consider: These people burned their sons and daughters as human sacrifices to Baal and Molech. Just as with Sodom and Gomorrah, we here find whole tribes too degraded and sinful to live. The Israelites were merely the divinely appointed means of their extermination. God has the last word. He has the final authority in deciding life and death (Deut. 32:29). He sent a worldwide flood. Later God exterminated Sodom and Gomorrah, because of their extreme immorality (Gen. 19). Those Sodomites were better off dead than alive. Later, however, God established the nation of Israel and then used this physical nation to carry out such punishment. They acted in that official capacity as ordered by God, as does an executioner of the State today, who may have the responsibility of executing the death penalty. The Canaanites practiced every conceivable, perverted sexual act. God waited until all physical hope for them was lost before commanding that they should be slain. After Israel rebelled and would no longer listen to God or his prophets, God rejected them and they are not carrying out his work today.

5.) Judges 4:6-9 says, Deborah the prophetess "sent and called Barak the son of Abinoam out of Kedeshnaphtali, and said unto him, Hath not the Lord God of Israel commanded, saying, Go and draw toward mount Tabor, and take with thee ten thousand men of the children of Naphtali and of the children of Zebulun? And I will draw unto thee to the river Kishon Sisera, the captain of Jabin's army, with his chariots and his multitude; and I will deliver him into thine hand. And Barak said unto her, If thou wilt go with me, then I will go: but if thou wilt not go with me, then I will not go. And she said, I will surely go with thee: notwithstanding the journey that thou takest shall not be for thine honour; for the Lord shall sell Sisera into the hand of a woman. And Deborah arose, and went with Barak to Kedesh."

6.) Judges 7:20-23 says Gideon's "three companies blew the trumpets, and brake the pitchers, and held the lamps in their left hands, and the trumpets in their right hands to blow withal: and they cried, The sword of the Lord, and of Gideon. And they stood every man in his place round about the camp; and all the host ran, and cried, and fled. And the three hundred blew the trumpets, and the Lord set every man's sword against his fellow, even throughout all the host: and the host fled to Bethshittah in Zererath, and to the border of Abelmeholah, unto Tabbath. And the men of Israel gathered themselves together out of Naphtali, and out of Asher, and out of all Manasseh, and pursued after the Midianites."

7.) God commanded Saul to "Go and utterly DESTROY the sinners the Amalekites, and FIGHT AGAINST THEM until they be consumed" (1 Sam. 15:18). But when King Saul carried out his mission only half-heartedly, sparing Agag the king, we read that "Samuel HEWED Agag in pieces" (1 Sam. 15:33).

8.) In 1 Samuel 17:46-51, David FOUGHT against Goliath and said, "This day will the Lord deliver thee into mine hand; and I will SMITE THEE, and take thine head from thee; and I will give the carcases of the host of the Philistines this day unto the fowls of the air, and to the wild beasts of the earth; that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel. And all this assembly shall know that the Lord saveth not with sword and spear: for the battle is the Lord's, and he will give you into our hands. And it came to pass, when the Philistine arose, and came, and drew nigh to meet David, that David hastened, and ran toward the army to meet the Philistine. And David put his hand in his bag, and took thence a stone, and slang it, and SMOTE the Philistine in his forehead, that the stone sunk into his forehead; and he fell upon his face to the earth. So David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and with a stone, and SMOTE the Philistine, and SLEW HIM; but there was no sword in the hand of David.Therefore David ran, and stood upon the Philistine, and took his sword, and drew it out of the sheath thereof, and SLEW HIM, and CUT OFF HIS HEAD therewith. And when the Philistines saw their champion was dead, they fled."

9.) Psalm 144:1 says, "Blessed be the Lord my strength which teacheth my hands to WAR, and my fingers to FIGHT."

10.) Killing a murderer is not murder. The same God who said, "Thou shalt not kill" (murder) (Ex. 20:13) also said, "He that smiteth a man so that he dieth, shall surely be put to death" (Ex. 21:12) and "whoso sheddeth man's blood, by man shall his blood be shed" (Gen. 9:6).The judge who sentences the criminal is innocent. The policeman or the soldier who defends his country, like the judge who protects society, does not act with a malicious motive to avenge a personal wrong, but with an altruistic motive for public safety. Scriptures give the same status to war among nations as capital punishment among individuals.

11.) When Israel was so presumptuous as to go to war after God had forbidden it, she was disastrously defeated (Nu. 14:39-45; Joshua 7:1-8:29; 1 Sam. 28:15-19; cp. 1 Sam. 31:1-6; 2 Chr. 18:1-34). Furthermore, God may even raise up a nation to go to war against us (America) and defeat us. Why? "Because they obeyed not the voice of the Lord their God, but transgressed his covenant, and all that Moses the servant of the Lord commanded, and would not hear them, nor do them" (2 Kings 18:12). Those who fight to defend America under such conditions, would be fighting against God. The CAUSE must be JUST.

12.) The silence of the New Testament on the subject of war apparently rests on the assumption that the Old Testament teaching was sufficiently explicit and did not call for any addition or modification. Even the teaching of Jesus concerning love to our fellow men does not rise higher than the passage quoted by Him from Leviticus 19:18: "Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself." But when Jesus said, "the Scriptures cannot be broken" (John 10:35), he was referring to the Old Testament. His Bible, the only Bible that existed in his day, was the Old Testament. He rebuked the Sadducees saying, "Ye do err, not knowing the Scriptures" (Matt. 22:29). In his fiercest conflicts with the Pharisees, he needed no other weapon than "It is written" (Matt. 4:4,7,10; Luke 4:4,8; 24:26). Hence, if we take Christ as an authority, we will take the entire Old Testament as an authority. He calls it the Word of God. By his numerous quotations, He has welded it to the New Testament so they are one unified Bible. They stand or fall together.

13.) Matthew 5:39 says, "Whosoever smiteth thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also." This remark was said in context of LAWFUL GOVERNMENT. When dealing with a policeman, or a boss, or a judge who may be unfair or rude. Remember that Christ turned the other cheek and suffered for us. When Jesus was struck during his San Hedrin trial, he did not invite further abuse by offering the other cheek in the literal sense, but instead immediately rebuked the offender by saying, "If I have spoken evil, bear witness of the evil: but if well, why smitest thou me?" (John 18:22-23). Nor did Paul take these words literally, but protested quickly and strongly when struck in the face during his court trial (Acts 23:2-3).

14.) Luke 6:31 says, "Do to others as you would have them do to you." But in the event of war we have to decide who the "others" are in whose place we are to put ourselves -- the lustful, murderous invaders who do not want us to resist them, or our own wives and children who need our protection.

15.) On two occasions Jesus went into the temple and with a show of physical force poured out the money changers' money, overturned their tables, and drove them out of the temple. Their fraudulent dealings were were making the temple a den of robbers (John 2:16; Matt. 21:13).

16.) Christ taught, "Love your enemies" (Matt. 5:44). Does that mean we can't defend ourselves? No. The two concepts are not contradictory. The judge who passes sentence on the evildoer may at the same time have a deep sense of pity and sympathy for him.Our love for unrepentant enemies does not mean we should put ourselves at their mercy. Furthermore, we are also commanded by Christ to love God with all our heart and soul and strength and mind and our neighbor as ourselves. In order to obey those commands, a Christian cannot possibly leave his neighbor at the mercy of a brutal aggressor when it is within our power to prevent it.

17.) Finally Christ said, "He that hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise a wallet: and he that hath none, let him sell his cloak and BUY A SWORD" (Luke 22:36). So important would it be that they have some means of SELF-DEFENSE that, if necessary, they were even to sell their coats to buy it. Peter's misuse of a sword a little later by striking the servant of a high priest and cutting off his ear, does not invalidate this teaching. Jesus' rebuke of Peter was not a command to destroy the sword, nor to throw it away, but simply, "Put up the sword into the sheath" (John 18:11) since this was not the proper time nor place to use it since He proposed to make a voluntary surrender. Nevertheless, there would be appropriate occasions for its future use. But those who rely on the sword above everything else will perish with the sword. Those who put their trust in the sword above everything else, will perish with the sword. That is what he meant when he said, "All they who take the sword shall perish with the sword." Notice that his disciples were not defenseless. They said, "Lord, behold here are two swords" (Luke 22:38).

"Then out spake brave Horatius, captain of the gate:
To every man upon this earth death cometh soon or late.
And how can man die better than facing fearful odds;
For the ashes of his fathers and the temple of his gods."

-- Thomas Babington Macaulay

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