Prepping in the Bible
I got a little long-winded with the previous two installments in this series on the Genesis Preppers. I don’t have a lot to say about this one, so it will be short, sweet, and to the point.
In Genesis chapter 13, Abraham and Lot have acquired so much livestock that their shepherds are continually quarreling with each other over pasture land. Lot decides to separate from Abraham and choose the lush and abundantly watered region near Sodom to be his new home.
In chapter 14, King Chedorlaomer and four other kings plot a raid on Sodom, Gomorrah, and two other towns. They sweep in and take Lot and a bunch of other folks captive. One of the survivors of the battle dashed out to Abraham and told him that his nephew Lot had been taken captive.
Here comes the prepper part. Genesis 14:14-15 — “When Abram heard that his relative had been taken prisoner, he assembled his 318 trained men, born in his household, and they went in pursuit as far as Dan. And he and his servants deployed against them by night, attacked them, and pursued them as far as Hobah to the north of Damascus.”
Did you catch that? Abram had 318 trained men in his household. The Hebrew word that is translated as “trained” here also means “practiced.” In the following verse we see that these servants deployed against the forces of these five kings and defeated them.
Father Abraham didn’t go looking for a fight, but he was well prepared if one ever came to him. 318 men make quite a force to equip, train, and run drills with, but that is exactly what this passage implies.
Preparing for tough times includes preparing to defend yourself against those who would attack you or your loved ones. Chedolaomer and company were guilty of kidnapping and robbery. Abraham responded with deadly force, a force that was equipped and practiced in the art of warfare.
Did God disapprove of Abraham’s actions? Apparently not, because verses 18-20 go on to tell us: “Then Melchizedek, king of Salem, brought out bread and wine; he was a priest to God Most High. He blessed him and said: Abram is blessed by God Most High, Creator of heaven and earth, and give praise to God Most High who has handed over your enemies to you.”
The moral of the story is that self-defense is a vital part of preparedness. For some of you, it’s an area that you gravitate toward first in your preparedness plan, but for others there is a deeply ingrained Christian pacifist mindset that has to be dealt with. I understand. I used to be a Quaker. Now I’m a former Quaker who owns and knows how to use a handgun, a carbine, and a shotgun. I don’t own them to take what’s yours, but to protect what’s mine.
Just like Father Abraham.