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Great Discoveries of the Bible

— A Landmarks of Faith Seminar —

Great Discoveries Seminar

Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob
Booklet  See notes below.

Portions of this lecture are also available as videos with powerpoint:
Lecture 2d Video: Abraham, Gen. 14:13-19:26 (Hosted by YouTube: English and Chinese)
Lecture 2e Video: Abraham, Gen. 19:27-23:20 (Hosted by YouTube: English and Chinese)

Lecture #2b:

Or click here for more listening options at Internet Archive.

Great Discoveries of the Bible Lecture #3a ⇨
⇦ Great Discoveries of the Bible Lecture #2a


Lecture #2b Notes


 ABRAHAM MAP  (opens in a new window)

Gen. 13:10: And Lot lifted up his eyes and saw all the valley of the Jordan, that it was well watered everywhere—before the Lord destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah—like the garden of the Lord [the Garden of Eden], like the land of Egypt [the fertile Nile river valley], as you go to Zoar

Five large and flourishing cities from the end of the Early Bronze Age have been found in the Jordan Valley (the Bab Ed-Dhra excavations) with burial grounds holding more than 300,000 burials! These match the cities of the plain mentioned in Genesis 14 and 19: Sodom, Gomorrah, and their neighbors.

Gen. 13:11: Lot chose for himself all the valley of the Jordan; and Lot journeyed [pulled up stakes] eastward. And they separated...


Gen. 14:1-2: And it came about in the days of Amraphel king of Shinar [Sumer], Arioch king of Ellasar [later known as Assyria], Chedorlaomer king of Elam [W. Iran], and Tidal king of Goyim [a loose coalition in E. Turkey], that they made war with Bera king of Sodom, and with Birsha king of Gomorrah, Shinab king of Admah, and Shemeber king of Zeboiim, and the king of Bela, that is, Zoar

Map of Mesopotamia

Gen. 14:8: ...and they arrayed for battle against them in the valley of Siddim (called the valley of the Salt Sea in Gen. 14:3).

Gen. 14:10: And the valley of Siddim was full of tar pits... [asphalt seepages]

Gen. 14:12: ...for he [Lot] was living in Sodom.

Notes for Video 2d:

Gen. 14:14: And when Abram heard that his relative had been taken captive, he led out his trained men, born in his house, three hundred and eighteen, and went in pursuit as far as Dan


Gen. 15:1: After these things, the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision, saying, Do not fear, Abram, I am a shield to you; your reward will be very great

Gen. 15:2: And Abram said, Lord God, what will you give me, since I am childless, and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus

Gen. 15:4: One who will come forth from your own body, he will be your heir

Gen. 15:5: And he took him outside and said, Now look toward the heavens, and count the stars, if you are able to count them. And he said to him, So will your descendants [your seed] be

Gen. 15:6: Then he believed [or trusted] in the Lord; and he reckoned it to him as righteousness

Gen. 15:8: And he said, Lord God, how may I know that I will inherit it?

Gen. 15:9-10: So he said to him, Bring me a three year old calf, and a three year old female goat, and a three year old ram, and a turtledove, and a young pigeon. And he brought all these to him and cut them in two, and laid each half opposite the other, but he did not cut the birds

Gen. 15:17: ...and look, a smoking stove pot [used for baking bread; sometimes translated oven] and a flaming torch that passed between these pieces

John 6:33,35: It is not Moses who has given you the bread out of heaven, but it is my Father who gives you the true bread out of heaven.... I am the bread of life

Gen. 15:13: Know for certain that your descendants will be strangers in a land that is not theirs, where they will be enslaved and oppressed four hundred years


Gen. 18:1: And the Lord appeared to him at the oaks of Mamre, while he was sitting at the tent opening in the heat of the day.

Life at the edge of the desert:  Pita bread, calf meat, and curds (Gen. 18:6-8). Sarah stays in the women’s section of the tent (Gen. 18:9). Abraham bargains with God (Gen. 18:22-33).


Gen. 19:24-25: And the Lord [Yhwh] rained on Sodom and on Gomorrah sulfur and fire from the Lord [Yhwh] out of the heavens

Gen. 19:28: And he looked down toward Sodom and Gomorrah, and toward all the land of the [Rift] Valley, and he saw...the smoke of the land ascended like the smoke of a furnace.

Notes for Video 2e:


Gen. 22:2: Take now your son, your only son, whom you love, Isaac, and go to the land of Moriah...

Har Karkom:  Flint-covered mountain three days south of Beersheba. Rock carvings (petroglyphs) indicate it was a sacred site in the time of Abraham.

Gen. 22:5: We will worship and return to you

Micah 6:6-7: With what will I come to the Lord and bow myself before the God on high? Will I come to him with burnt offerings, with year-old calves? Is the Lord pleased with thousands of rams, in ten thousand rivers of oil? Will I present my first-born for my rebellious acts, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?

Copyright © 2015, 2019, 2021 by Jeffrey J. Harrison.
Many of the Scripture verses quoted have been translated or modified by the author to bring out details of the original Greek or Hebrew text. Otherwise: Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, © Copyright the Lockman Foundation 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995. Used by permission.
Unattributed photos are by the author. All rights reserved.