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Abraham

Bless Your Heart by Cindy Colley

Digging Deep Israel: Next Stop–Abraham’s Gate at Dan

I love antiques. As I write I’m sitting in an old Windsor chair at a table Glenn built from wood from his grandparents’ old log cabin. My computer backs up to an old embroidered Valentine doily that boasts old blue Mason jars repurposed as candle holders. 

A few months ago, Glenn found an old rock chimney he was able to purchase from which he made me a stone fence around a little kitchen garden area. We spent some months of diligently looking till we found an old iron gate to make an entranceway through the stone wall. I never thought about the difference an old iron gate would make in the nostalgic feel of that little spot. 

An old gate. I may have thought I had an old gate outside, but in the Canaanite city of Laish, there’s an OLD gate. This ancient part of Tel-Dan was founded about 6000 years ago and the gate of the city has been unearthed, having been preserved well by a rampart having been erected over it in a later war.

The thrilling thing about this gate is that it seems almost certain to me that Abraham passed through it when he went to rescue Lot in Genesis 14:14. This is the location of Abraham’s travel with the 318 servants that were born in his own house. The gate’s common name today is “Abraham’s gate”.

As I looked at this gate, which is currently undergoing some restoration, I thought about Uncle Abraham going to rescue Lot, for whom he later made the sacrifice of the best land and who ultimately was father to two Canaanite nations that would plague the children of Abraham for centuries: the Moabites and the Ammonites (Genesis 19:37-38). His likely passage through this gate was just a passage through which God was working His own plan for the conquering of the Canaanites, the settling of the promised land, the ultimate birth of the Redeemer in a nation that had passed through the fire of enemy nations and been humbled because of their conformity to those nations. It was a passage through which God was getting us to our promised land around His throne. 

The term “old” is relative, for sure. This is an old gate.

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