Thoughts on Western Civilization
This week I’ve been taking the Ron Paul Curriculum Western Civilization Course by Tom Woods and I’ve been assigned a short essay on the major events from the Patriarch Abraham to Moses. Enjoy. Please feel free to comment, and be sure to check out the rest of the blog! May the Truth be with You!
We all know of Abraham as an elderly man in the book of Genesis who was the ancestor of the Jews. To Christians, we know him as the “Father of our faith”, and is a great example to us of displaying such faith.
Abraham was in Ur, in the land known as Mesopotamia, somewhere in Iraq, when he received this call from God.
Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee: And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing: And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed. (Gen 12:1-3)
(Note: Abram’s name was later changed to Abraham. I’m using the latter name for consistency.)
So he went to Canaan with his nephew Lot. He lived there in the land for many years, until one day, God told Abraham to take his son Isaac and sacrifice him “upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.” Abraham took Isaac, some wood and fire to light the sacrifice and started up to the mountain. He saw it afar off, and told the servants who had come with him to wait until he returned. They climbed up to the peak of the mountain and Abraham prepared the altar with a heavy heart. Isaac submitted to being sacrificed, which is an example of submission. Abraham had great faith in this, because Isaac had been the one to perpetuate the seed of Abraham to make a great nation; he couldn’t do it if he was dead. He had faith that God would raise him from the dead to fulfill the promises made to him and his wife, Sarah. Just as he was about to sacrifice Isaac, God intervened, and pointed out a ram that would make a more suitable sacrifice to God. God was pleased by Abraham’s willingness to serve him, putting nothing else before Him. The substitute of a ram is a picture of Christ, and his being the substitute for the world.
God was faithful to Abraham, and after Abraham’s death, repeated the promises to Isaac, and made the covenant anew with him. Through the years God blessed Isaac, and gave him two sons; Jacob and Esau. Esau was the elder, and was a hunter; Jacob preferred to tend the sheep. One day, Esau came in from the hunt, famished. Jacob took advantage of his brother’s hunger to steal his birthright. Esau didn’t take the agreement seriously, but Jacob did. When Isaac was about to die, Jacob pretended to be Esau under his mother Rebecca’s prodding, and took Esau’s blessing as well. Esau threatened to kill Jacob for his deception, and so Jacob is directed to flee. He runs to his uncle Laban’s house, and there falls in love with Rachel. Jacob works out a deal with Laban; he will work for no wages for seven years in payment for Rachel. As it turns out, Jacob is deceived by Laban, and he ends up marrying Leah. He ends up working for another seven years for Rachel. After some time, God directs him to return to his father’s house. He makes right with Laban and with Esau, and wrestled with God by a river, Jacob receiving a blessing from God.
After this, Jacob’s name is changed to Isreal, the 12 patriarchs are born, Joseph is sold into slavery, Joseph makes right with his brother’s, Isreal moves into Egypt, and eventually Isreal and Joseph die. After Joseph’s death, a Pharoah rises up that doesn’t know Joseph or the Isrealites. He convinces the Egyptians that they need to be enslaved for “national security”, and the people stay in bondage for 400 years. Their cries to God are heard, and he sends them a deliverer; Moses. Moses stands up to Pharaoh, and God used Moses to punish Egypt for holding the Isrealites as slaves by sending upon them the ten plagues. These plagues devastate Egypt, and they are forced to let Isreal go. Moses leads them through the wilderness, then dies on the borders of Canaan, after giving up charge of the people to Joshua, a proven general who will lead them to victory with the Lord’s help over the Canaanites.