Did Abraham ever dwell in a house, or merely tents?


Clarify Share Report Asked September 15 2013 Mini Norman Garwood

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Stringio Joshua Yap
Abraham dwelled in a house in Ur before he was called by God to leave (Gen 12) and dwelled in Beersheba after his journey (Gen 22:19).

But in His heart he always longed for that heavenly city whose architect and builder is God (Heb 11:10), so I guess you could say he never truly stayed or belong to anywhere until eternity comes :)

September 15 2013 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

Mini John Appelt
It is not known if Abraham ever lived in a house, but it is very likely that while sojourning in Canaan, he lived only in tents. In the passages about Abraham, tents are mentioned nine times. He pitched his tent, moved his tent, and lived in it. According to Genesis 14:13, Abraham, as a chieftain, armed 318 servants to rescue Lot. If he and Sarah had other servants, one can imagine the tent city that moved every time Abraham moved. 

Genesis 18:1 describes Abraham sitting at the door of his tent in the heat of the day. The tent door was the place to rest at noon when the sun was hottest and after eating a meal. This was where Abraham was sitting when the Lord appeared to him. 

It is thought that tents would be terribly hot and uncomfortable to live in, but it is remarkable that they are not. From ancient times, the Bedouins, the desert-dwellers of Middle East and North Africa have built light, reliable, portable tents. The black goatskins they use are handy in the 120°F daytime temperatures. Black is actually cooler in hot climates and used for robes because the additional heat absorbed by the black loose robe is lost before it reaches the skin. 

Concerning the tent, the dark goatskins cast a deep shade and yet it is coarsely woven to let in thousands of pinpoints of light to illuminate the interior. As heat inside the tent rises it flows out the top of the tent, creating a cooling breeze at the bottom of the tent. The temperature is about 30 degrees cooler than the outside temperature. These tents also protect from ultraviolet rays and hold in the moisture. 

When it rains, the fibers swell up, blocking the holes, and the tent made of naturally oily goat hair becomes waterproof. When the rain stops, the fibers shrink again, and the tent reverts to the cooling mode. 

A large tent may have 9 poles placed in 3 rows covering a space 20-25 feet long, 10 feet wide and 8-10 feet high in the middle. 

A curtain, hung on the middle row of poles, divides the tent into two sections, one for the men, and one for the women. The woman’s section also serves as the kitchen and pantry and the man’s section serves as the place to receive guests. In Genesis 18:10, Sarah may have been behind this partition. On the poles are hooks for hanging clothes, baskets, saddles, weapons, and articles for daily use.

Bedouin people move about, sow a piece of land, fertilize the land with manure of the animals, wait for the crops to ripen, and then move again taking their tents with them. If the tent wears out, repair or replacement is available from the flock of goats the people keep. Someone remarked the goats are the factory that make the tents. “They follow you around eating everything you cannot and converting it into meat, butter, cheese, fur, leather and wool.”

January 29 2022 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

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