ABRAHAM (Hebrew : אַבְרָהָם, Modern Avraham, Tiberian
Arabic : إبراهيم Ibrahim), originally AVRAM or
ABRAM, is the common patriarch of the three
Abrahamic religions . In
Judaism he is the founding father of the Covenant , the special
relationship between the Jewish people and
God ; in Christianity, he
is the prototype of all believers, Jewish or Gentile; and in
is seen as a link in the chain of prophets that begins with
The narrative in Genesis revolves around the themes of posterity and
Abraham is called by
God to leave the house of his father Terah
and settle in the land originally given to
Canaan , but which
Abraham and his progeny. Various candidates are put
forward who might inherit the land after Abraham, but all are
dismissed except for
Isaac , his son by his half-sister
Abraham purchases a tomb (the
Cave of the Patriarchs
Cave of the Patriarchs ) at
Hebron to be
Sarah's grave, thus establishing his right to the land, and in the
second generation his heir
Isaac is married to a woman from his own
kin, thus ruling the Canaanites out of any inheritance.
Keturah and has six more sons, but on his death, when he is
buried beside Sarah, it is
Isaac who receives "all Abraham's goods",
while the other sons receive only "gifts" (Genesis 25:5–8).
Abraham story cannot be definitively related to any specific
time, and it is widely agreed that the patriarchal age , along with
the exodus and the period of the judges, is a late literary construct
that does not relate to any period in actual history. A common
hypothesis among scholars is that it was composed in the early Persian
period (late 6th century BCE) as a result of tensions between Jewish
landowners who had stayed in Judah during the
Babylonian captivity and
traced their right to the land through their "father Abraham", and the
returning exiles who based their counter-claim on
Moses and the Exodus
* 1 Biblical account
* 1.1 Abram\'s origins and calling
* 1.2 Abram and Sarai
* 1.3 Abram and Lot separate
* 1.4 Abram and
* 1.5 Abrahamic covenant
* 1.6 Abram and
* 1.8 Abraham\'s three visitors
* 1.9 Abraham\'s plea
* 1.11 Birth of
* 1.14 Later years
* 2 Historicity and origins
* 2.1 Historicity
* 2.2 Origins of the narrative
Abraham in religious traditions
* 3.1 Overview
Abraham in the arts
* 4.1 Painting and sculpture
* 4.2 Literature
* 4.3 Music
* 5 See also
* 6 References
* 7 Bibliography
* 8 External links
A painting of Abraham's departure by József Molnár
ABRAM\'S ORIGINS AND CALLING
Terah , the ninth in descent from
Noah , was the father of three
sons: Abram, Nahor , and
Haran was the father of Lot (who was
thus Abram's nephew), and died in his native city, Ur of the Chaldees
. Abram married
Sarah (Sarai) , who was barren. Terah, with Abram,
Sarai, and Lot, then departed for Canaan, but settled in a place named
Haran , where
Terah died at the age of 205.
God had told Abram to
leave his country and kindred and go to a land that he would show him,
and promised to make of him a great nation, bless him, make his name
great, bless them that bless him, and curse them who may curse him.
Abram was 75 years old when he left
Haran with his wife Sarai, his
nephew Lot, and the substance and souls that they had acquired, and
Canaan . Abraham's Counsel to Sarai
(watercolor c. 1896–1902 by
James Tissot )
ABRAM AND SARAI
There was a severe famine in the land of Canaan, so that Abram and
Lot and their households, traveled south to
Egypt . On the way Abram
told his wife Sarai to say that she was his sister, so that the
Egyptians would not kill him. When they entered Egypt, the Pharaoh's
officials praised Sarai's beauty to
Pharaoh , and she was taken into
his palace, and Abram was given provisions: "oxen, and he-asses, and
menservants, and maidservants, and she-asses, and camels". However,
Pharaoh and his household with great plagues, for which
he tried to find the reason. Upon discovering that Sarai was a married
Pharaoh demanded that they and their household leave
immediately, with all their goods.
ABRAM AND LOT SEPARATE
Depiction of the separation of
Abraham and Lot by Wenceslaus
Hollar Main article:
Abraham and Lot\'s conflict
When they came back to the Bethel and Hai area, Abram's and Lot's
sizable livestock herds occupied the same pastures. This became a
problem for the herdsmen who were assigned to each family's cattle.
The conflicts between herdsmen had become so troublesome that Abram
suggested that Lot choose a separate area, either on the left hand
(north) or on the right hand (south), that there be no conflict
amongst brethren. But Lot chose to go the plain of Jordan where the
land was well watered everywhere as far as Zoar, and he dwelled in the
cities of the plain toward Sodom . Abram went south to
settled in the plain of
Mamre , where he built another altar to
ABRAM AND CHEDORLAOMER
Battle of Siddim Meeting of
Melchizedek (painting c. 1464–1467 by
Dieric Bouts the Elder )
During the rebellion of the Jordan River cities against
Abram's nephew, Lot, was taken prisoner along with his entire
household by the invading Elamite forces. The Elamite army came to
collect the spoils of war, after having just defeated the king of
Sodom's armies. Lot and his family, at the time, were settled on the
outskirts of the Kingdom of Sodom which made them a visible target.
One person who escaped capture came and told Abram what happened.
Once Abram received this news, he immediately assembled 318 trained
servants. Abram's force headed north in pursuit of the Elamite army,
who were already worn down from the
Battle of Siddim . When they
caught up with them at Dan , Abram devised a battle plan by splitting
his group into more than one unit, and launched a night raid. Not only
were they able to free the captives, Abram's unit chased and
slaughtered the Elamite King
Chedorlaomer at Hobah, just north of
Damascus . They freed Lot, as well as his household and possessions,
and recovered all of the goods from Sodom that had been taken.
Upon Abram's return, Sodom's king came out to meet with him in the
Valley of Shaveh , the "king's dale". Also,
Melchizedek king of Salem
Jerusalem ), a priest of
God Most High , brought out bread and wine
and blessed Abram and God. Abram then gave
Melchizedek a tenth of
everything. The king of Sodom then offered to let Abram keep all the
possessions if he would merely return his people. Abram refused any
deal from the king of Sodom, other than the share to which his allies
were entitled. The vision of the Lord directing
Abraham to count
the stars (woodcut by
Julius Schnorr von Carolsfeld
Julius Schnorr von Carolsfeld from the 1860
Bible in Pictures)
Covenant of the pieces
Covenant of the pieces
The voice of the Lord came to Abram in a vision and repeated the
promise of the land and descendants as numerous as the stars. Abram
God made a covenant ceremony, and
God told of the future bondage
of Israel in Egypt.
God described to Abram the land that his offspring
would claim: the land of the Kenites, Kenizzites, Kadmonites,
Hittites, Perizzites, Rephaims, Amorites, Canaanites, Girgashites, and
ABRAM AND HAGAR
imagined here in a
Bible illustration from 1897.
Abram and Sarai tried to make sense of how he would become a
progenitor of nations, because after 10 years of living in Canaan, no
child had been born. Sarai then offered her Egyptian handmaiden, Hagar
, to Abram with the intention that she would bear him a son. After
Hagar found she was pregnant, she began to despise her mistress,
Sarai. Therefore, Sarai mistreated Hagar, and
Hagar fled away. En
route an angel spoke with
Hagar at the fountain in the way to Shur .
He instructed her to return and that her son would be "a wild ass of a
man; his hand shall be against every man, and every man's hand against
him; and he shall dwell in the face of all his brethren." She was told
to call her son
Hagar then called
God who spoke to her
"El-roi ", ("Thou
God seest me:" KJV). From that day, the well was
called Beer-lahai-roi, ("The well of him that liveth and seeth me."
KJV margin). She then did as she was instructed by returning to her
mistress in order to have her child. Abram was eighty-six years of age
Ishmael was born.
ABRAHAM AND SARAH
Thirteen years later, when Abram was ninety-nine years of age, God
declared Abram's new name: "Abraham" – "a father of many nations".
Abraham then received the instructions for the covenant, of which
circumcision was to be the sign. Then
God declared Sarai's new name:
Sarah " and blessed her and told Abraham, "I will give thee a son
also of her". But
Abraham laughed, and "said in his heart, 'Shall a
child be born unto him that is an hundred years old? and shall Sarah,
that is ninety years old, bear?'" Immediately after Abraham's
encounter with God, he had his entire household of men, including
himself (age 99) and
Ishmael (age 13), circumcised.
ABRAHAM\'S THREE VISITORS
Abraham and the Three Angels (watercolor c. 1896–1902 by James
Not long afterward, during the heat of the day,
Abraham had been
sitting at the entrance of his tent by the terebinths of
Mamre . He
looked up and saw three men in the presence of God. Then he ran and
bowed to the ground to welcome them.
Abraham then offered to wash
their feet and fetch them a morsel of bread, to which they assented.
Abraham rushed to
Sarah 's tent to order cakes made from choice flour,
then he ordered a servant-boy to prepare a choice calf. When all was
prepared, he set curds, milk and the calf before them, waiting on
them, under a tree, as they ate.
One of the visitors told
Abraham that upon his return next year,
Sarah would have a son. While at the tent entrance,
what was said and she laughed to herself about the prospect of having
a child at their ages. The visitor inquired of
Abraham why Sarah
laughed at bearing a child at her age, as nothing is too hard for God.
Sarah denied laughing.
Sodom and Gomorrah and
Lot (biblical person)
Abraham Sees Sodom in Flames (watercolor c. 1896–1902 by James
Abraham and the three visitors got up. They walked over
to the peak that overlooked the 'cities of the plain' to discuss the
Sodom and Gomorrah for their detestable sins that were so
great, it moved
God to action. Because Abraham's nephew was living in
God revealed plans to confirm and judge these cities. At this
point, the two other visitors left for Sodom. Then
Abraham turned to
God and pleaded decrementally with Him (from fifty persons to less)
that "if there were at least ten righteous men found in the city,
God spare the city?" For the sake of ten righteous people,
God declared that he would not destroy the city.
When the two visitors got to Sodom to conduct their report, they
planned on staying in the city square. However, Abraham's nephew, Lot,
met with them and strongly insisted that these two "men" stay at his
house for the night. A rally of men stood outside of Lot's home and
demanded that they bring out his guests so that they may "know" (v.5)
them. However, Lot objected and offered his virgin daughters who had
not "known" (v.8) man to the rally of men instead. They rejected that
notion and sought to break down Lot's door to get to his male guests,
thus confirming the wickedness of the city and portending their
Early the next morning,
Abraham went to the place where he stood
before God. He "looked out toward Sodom and Gomorrah" and saw what
became of the cities of the plain, where not even "ten righteous"
(v.18:32) had been found, as "the smoke of the land went up as the
smoke of a furnace."
ABRAHAM AND ABIMELECH
Endogamy and Wife–sister narratives in the Book of
Abraham settled between Kadesh and Shur in the land of the
Philistines . While he was living in
Abraham openly claimed
Sarah was his sister. Upon discovering this news, King Abimelech
had her brought to him.
God then came to
Abimelech in a dream and
declared that taking her would result in death because she was a man's
Abimelech had not laid hands on her, so he inquired if he would
also slay a righteous nation, especially since
Abraham had claimed
that he and
Sarah were siblings. In response,
he did indeed have a blameless heart and that is why he continued to
exist. However, should he not return the wife of
Abraham back to him,
God would surely destroy
Abimelech and his entire household. Abimelech
was informed that
Abraham was a prophet who would pray for him.
Early next morning,
Abimelech informed his servants of his dream and
Abraham inquiring as to why he had brought such great guilt
upon his kingdom.
Abraham stated that he thought there was no fear of
God in that place, and that they might kill him for his wife. Then
Abraham defended what he had said as not being a lie at all: "And yet
indeed she is my sister; she is the daughter of my father, but not the
daughter of my mother; and she became my wife."
Sarah to Abraham, and gave him gifts of sheep, oxen, and servants; and
invited him to settle wherever he pleased in Abimelech's lands.
Abraham a thousand pieces of silver to serve
as Sarah's vindication before all.
Abraham then prayed for Abimelech
and his household, since
God had stricken the women with infertility
because of the taking of Sarah.
After living for some time in the land of the Philistines, Abimelech
Phicol , the chief of his troops, approached
Abraham because of a
dispute that resulted in a violent confrontation at a well. Abraham
Abimelech due to his
Philistine servant's aggressive
attacks and the seizing of Abraham's well.
Abimelech claimed ignorance
of the incident. Then
Abraham offered a pact by providing sheep and
oxen to Abimelech. Further, to attest that
Abraham was the one who dug
the well, he also gave
Abimelech seven ewes for proof. Because of this
sworn oath, they called the place of this well:
Beersheba . After
Phicol headed back to
Abraham planted a
Beersheba and called upon "the name of the LORD, the
BIRTH OF ISAAC
Sacrifice of Isaac, by
As had been prophesied in
Mamre the previous year,
pregnant and bore a son to Abraham, on the first anniversary of the
covenant of circumcision.
Abraham was "an hundred years old", when his
son whom he named
Isaac was born; and he circumcised him when he was
eight days old. For Sarah, the thought of giving birth and nursing a
child, at such an old age, also brought her much laughter, as she
God hath made me to laugh, so that all that hear will laugh
Isaac continued to grow and on the day he was weaned,
Abraham held a great feast to honor the occasion. During the
Ishmael mocking; an observation that
would begin to clarify the birthright of Isaac.
ABRAHAM AND ISHMAEL
Islam § The sacrifice
Ishmael was fourteen years old when Abraham's son
Isaac was born to a
different mother, Sarah.
Sarah had finally borne her own child, even
though she had passed her child-bearing period. When she found Ishmael
Abraham to send both
She declared that
Ishmael would not share in Isaac's inheritance.
Abraham was greatly distressed by his wife's words and sought the
advice of his God.
Abraham not to be distressed but to do as
his wife commanded.
Abraham that "in
Isaac shall seed be
called to thee." He also said that
Ishmael would make a nation,
"because he is thy seed".
Early the next morning,
together. He gave her bread and water and sent them away. The two
wandered in the wilderness of
Beersheba until her bottle of water was
completely consumed. In a moment of despair, she burst into tears.
God heard the boy's voice, an angel of the Lord confirmed to
Hagar that he would become a great nation. A well of water then
appeared so that it saved their lives. As the boy grew, he became a
skilled archer living in the wilderness of Paran . Eventually his
mother found a wife for
Ishmael from her home country, the land of
ABRAHAM AND ISAAC
The Angel Hinders the Offering of
Abraham about to sacrifice Isaac. From a 14th-century missal Main
article: Binding of
At some point in
Isaac 's youth,
Abraham was commanded by
offer his son up as a sacrifice in the land of
Moriah . The patriarch
traveled three days until he came to the mount that
God told him of.
He commanded the servants to remain while he and
Isaac proceeded alone
into the mount.
Isaac carried the wood upon which he would be
sacrificed. Along the way,
Isaac asked his father where the animal for
the burnt offering was, to which
Abraham replied "
God will provide
himself a lamb for a burnt offering". Just as
Abraham was about to
sacrifice his son, he was interrupted by the angel of the Lord, and he
saw behind him a "ram caught in a thicket by his horns", which he
sacrificed instead of his son. For his obedience he received another
promise of numerous descendants and abundant prosperity. After this
Abraham went to
Sarah died, and
Abraham buried her in the
Cave of the Patriarchs
Cave of the Patriarchs (the
"cave of Machpelah"), near
Hebron which he had purchased along with
the adjoining field from Ephron the Hittite . After the death of
Abraham took another wife, a concubine named
Keturah , by whom
he had six sons:
Jokshan , Medan ,
Ishbak , and
Shuah . According to the Bible, reflecting the change of his name to
"Abraham" meaning "a father of many nations",
Abraham is considered to
be the progenitor of many nations mentioned in the Bible, among others
Ishmaelites , Edomites ,) Amalekites , Kenizzites ,
Midianites and Assyrians , and through his nephew Lot he was also
related to the Moabites and Ammonites .
Abraham lived to see his son
Rebekah , (and possibly to see the birth of his twin grandsons
Jacob and Esau ). He died at age 175, and was buried in the cave of
Machpelah by his sons
Isaac and Ishmael.1Chronicles 1:32 See also:
Abraham\'s Family Tree
HISTORICITY AND ORIGINS
Abraham's well at
In the early and middle 20th century, leading archaeologists such as
William F. Albright , and biblical scholars such as
Albrecht Alt ,
believed that the patriarchs and matriarchs were either real
individuals or believable composites of people who lived in the
"patriarchal age ", the 2nd millennium BCE. But, in the 1970s, new
arguments concerning Israel's past and the biblical texts challenged
these views; these arguments can be found in
Thomas L. Thompson 's The
Historicity of the Patriarchal Narratives (1974), and John Van Seters
Abraham in History and Tradition (1975). Thompson, a literary
scholar, based his argument on archaeology and ancient texts. His
thesis centered on the lack of compelling evidence that the patriarchs
lived in the 2nd millennium BCE, and noted how certain biblical texts
reflected first millennium conditions and concerns. Van Seters
examined the patriarchal stories and argued that their names, social
milieu, and messages strongly suggested that they were Iron Age
creations. By the beginning of the 21st century, archaeologists had
given up hope of recovering any context that would make Abraham, Isaac
Jacob credible historical figures.
ORIGINS OF THE NARRATIVE
Abraham's name is apparently very ancient, as the tradition found in
Genesis no longer understands its original meaning (probably "Father
is exalted" – the meaning offered in Genesis 17:5, "Father of a
multitude", is a popular etymology ). The story, like those of the
other patriarchs, most likely had a substantial oral prehistory. At
some stage the oral traditions became part of the written tradition of
Pentateuch ; a majority of scholars believe this stage belongs to
the Persian period, roughly 520–320 BCE. The mechanisms by which
this came about remain unknown, but there are currently two important
hypotheses. The first, called Persian Imperial authorisation, is that
the post-Exilic community devised the
Torah as a legal basis on which
to function within the Persian Imperial system; the second is that
Pentateuch was written to provide the criteria for who would belong to
the post Exilic Jewish community and to establish the power structures
and relative positions of its various groups, notably the priesthood
and the lay "elders".
Nevertheless, the completion of the
Torah and its elevation to the
centre of post-Exilic
Judaism was as much or more about combining
older texts as writing new ones – the final
Pentateuch was based on
existing traditions. In
Ezekiel 33:24, written during the Exile
(i.e., in the first half of the 6th century BCE), Ezekiel, an exile in
Babylon, tells how those who remained in Judah are claiming ownership
of the land based on inheritance from Abraham; but the prophet tells
them they have no claim because they don't observe Torah. Isaiah
63:16 similarly testifies of tension between the people of Judah and
the returning post-Exilic Jews (the "gôlâ "), stating that
the father of Israel and that Israel's history begins with the Exodus
and not with Abraham. The conclusion to be inferred from this and
similar evidence (e.g.,
Ezra-Nehemiah ), is that the figure of Abraham
must have been preeminent among the great landowners of Judah at the
time of the Exile and after, serving to support their claims to the
land in opposition to those of the returning exiles.
ABRAHAM IN RELIGIOUS TRADITIONS
Abraham and the Angels by
Aert de Gelder
Aert de Gelder (c. 1680–85)
* Baha\'i Faith
9 October – Roman Catholicism
Abraham is given a high position of respect in three major world
Islam . In
Judaism he is the
founding father of the Covenant, the special relationship between the
Jewish people and
God – a belief which gives the Jews a unique
position as the Chosen People of
God . In Christianity, the Apostle
Paul taught that Abraham's faith in
God – preceding the Mosaic law
– made him the prototype of all believers, circumcised and
uncircumcised. The Islamic prophet
Muhammad claimed Abraham, whose
Islam as a "believer before the fact"
and undercut Jewish claims to an exclusive relationship with
In Jewish tradition,
Abraham is called Avraham Avinu (אברהם
אבינו), "our father Abraham," signifying that he is both the
biological progenitor of the Jews (including converts, according to
Jewish tradition), and the father of Judaism, the first Jew. His
story is read in the weekly
Torah reading portions, predominantly in
the parashot : Lech-Lecha (לֶךְ-לְךָ), Vayeira
Sarah (חַיֵּי שָׂרָה), and
A cryptic story in the
Babylonian Talmud states that "On the eve of
Judah the Prince 's pupils, Rab Hanina and Rab
Hoshaiah , who devoted themselves especially to cosmogony , used to
create a delicious calf by means of the Sefer Yetzirah, and ate it on
the Sabbath ." Mystics assert that the biblical patriarch Abraham
used the same method to create the calf prepared for the three angels
Sarah 's pregnancy in the biblical account at Genesis
Abraham does not loom so large in
Christianity as he does in Judaism
and Islam. It is
Jesus as the Jewish
Messiah who is central to
Christianity, and the idea of a divine
Messiah is what separates
Christianity from the other two religions. In Romans 4, Abraham's
merit is less his obedience to the divine will than his faith in God's
ultimate grace; this faith provides him the merit for
chosen him for the covenant, and the covenant becomes one of faith,
not obedience. I
The Roman Catholic Church calls
Abraham "our father in Faith" in the
Eucharistic prayer of the
Roman Canon , recited during the Mass (see
Abraham in the Catholic liturgy ). He is also commemorated in the
calendars of saints of several denominations: on 20 August by the
Maronite Church , 28 August in the Coptic Church and the Assyrian
Church of the East (with the full office for the latter), and on 9
October by the Roman Catholic Church and the Lutheran
Church–Missouri Synod . In the introduction to his 15th-century
translation of the
Golden Legend 's account of Abraham, William Caxton
noted that this patriarch's life was read in church on Quinquagesima
Sunday . He is the patron saint of those in the hospitality industry.
Eastern Orthodox Church
Eastern Orthodox Church commemorates him as the "Righteous
Forefather Abraham", with two feast days in its liturgical calendar .
The first time is on 9 October (for those churches which follow the
Julian Calendar , 9 October falls on 22 October of the
Gregorian Calendar ), where he is commemorated together with
his nephew "Righteous Lot". The other is on the "Sunday of the
Forefathers" (two Sundays before Christmas), when he is commemorated
together with other ancestors of
Abraham is also mentioned in
Divine Liturgy of
Saint Basil the Great
Saint Basil the Great , just before the
Sarah are invoked in the prayers said by the
priest over a newly married couple.
Abraham in Islam
Abraham as a link in the chain of prophets that begins
Adam and culminates in
Ibrāhīm is mentioned in 35 chapters of the
Quran , more often than
any other biblical personage apart from
Moses . He is called both a
hanif (monotheist ) and muslim (one who submits), and Muslims regard
him as a prophet and patriarch , the archetype of the perfect
and the revered reformer of the
Mecca . Islamic traditions
consider Ibrāhīm (Abraham) the first Pioneer of
Islam (which is also
called millat Ibrahim, the "religion of Abraham"), and that his
purpose and mission throughout his life was to proclaim the Oneness of
God . In Islam, he is referred to as "Ibrahim Khalilullah", meaning
Abraham the Friend ".
ABRAHAM IN THE ARTS
PAINTING AND SCULPTURE
Paintings on the life of
Abraham tend to focus on only a few
incidents: the sacrifice of Isaac; meeting Melchizedek; entertaining
the three angels;
Hagar in the desert; and a few others.
Additionally, Martin O'Kane, a professor of Biblical Studies, writes
that the parable of Lazarus resting in the "
Bosom of Abraham ", as
described in the
Gospel of Luke , became an iconic image in Christian
works. According to O'Kane, artists often chose to divert from the
common literary portrayal of Lazarus sitting next to
Abraham at a
banquet in Heaven and instead focus on the "somewhat incongruous
notion of Abraham, the most venerated of patriarchs, holding a naked
and vulnerable child in his bosom". Several artists have been
inspired by the life of Abraham, including Albrecht Dürer
Raphael , Philip
van Dyck (Dutch painter, 1680–1753), and
Claude Lorrain (French
Rembrandt (Dutch, 1606–1669) created at least
seven works on Abraham,
Peter Paul Rubens
Peter Paul Rubens (1577–1640) did several,
Marc Chagall did at least five on Abraham, Gustave Doré (French
illustrator, 1832–1883) did six, and
James Tissot (French painter
and illustrator, 1836–1902) did over twenty works on the subject.
16th century plaster cast of a late Roman era Sacrifice of
The hand of
God originally came down to restrain Abraham's knife (both
are now missing).
Sarcophagus of Junius Bassus depicts a set of biblical stories,
Abraham about to sacrifice Isaac. These sculpted scenes are
on the outside of a marble Early Christian sarcophagus used for the
Junius Bassus . He died in 359. This sarcophagus has been
described as "probably the single most famous piece of early Christian
relief sculpture." The sarcophagus was originally placed in or under
Old St. Peter\'s Basilica , was rediscovered in 1597, and is now
below the modern basilica in the Museo Storico del Tesoro della
Basilica di San Pietro (Museum of St. Peter\'s Basilica ) in the
Vatican . The base is approximately 4 × 8 × 4 feet. The Old
Testament scenes depicted were chosen as precursors of Christ's
sacrifice in the
New Testament , in an early form of typology . Just
to the right of the middle is Daniel in the lion's den and on the left
Abraham about to sacrifice Isaac.
George Segal created figural sculptures by molding plastered gauze
strips over live models in his 1987 work Abraham's Farewell to
Ishmael. The human condition was central to his concerns, and Segal
used the Old Testament as a source for his imagery. This sculpture
depicts the dilemma faced by
Sarah demanded that he expel
Hagar and Ishmael. In the sculpture, the father's tenderness, Sarah's
rage, and Hagar's resigned acceptance portray a range of human
emotions. The sculpture was donated to the Miami Art Museum after the
artist's death in 2000.
Abraham in Christian Iconography
Abraham can be identified by the context of the image – the
Melchizedek , the three visitors, or the sacrifice of
Isaac. In solo portraits a sword or knife may be used as his
attribute, as in this statue by Gian Maria Morlaiter or this painting
by Lorenzo Monaco. He always wears a gray or white beard.
As early as the beginning of the 3rd century, Christian art followed
Christian typology in making the sacrifice of
Isaac a foreshadowing of
Christ's sacrifice on the cross and its memorial in the sacrifice of
the Mass. See for example this 11th-century Christian altar engraved
with Abraham's and other sacrifices taken to prefigure that of Christ
in the Eucharist.
Some early Christian writers interpreted the three visitors as the
God . Thus in Santa Maria Maggiore, Rome, a 5th-century mosaic
portrays only the visitors against a gold ground and puts
semitransparent copies of them in the "heavenly" space above the
scene. In Eastern Orthodox art the visit is the chief means by which
the Trinity is pictured (example). Some images do not include Abraham
and Sarah, like Andrei Rublev's Trinity, which shows only the three
visitors as beardless youths at a table.
Fear and Trembling
Fear and Trembling (original Danish title: Frygt og Bæven) is an
influential philosophical work by
Søren Kierkegaard , published in
1843 under the pseudonym Johannes de silentio (John the Silent).
Kierkegaard wanted to understand the anxiety that must have been
God asked him to sacrifice his son.
Steve Reich released an opera named The Cave . The title
Cave of the Patriarchs
Cave of the Patriarchs . The narrative of the opera is based
on the story of
Abraham and his immediate family as it is recounted in
the various religious texts, and as it is understood by individual
people from different cultures and religious traditions.
Bob Dylan 's "
Highway 61 Revisited " is the title track for his 1965
Highway 61 Revisited . In 2004,
Rolling Stone magazine ranked
the song as number 364 in their 500 Greatest Songs of All Time . The
song has five stanzas. In each stanza, someone describes an unusual
problem that is ultimately resolved on Highway 61. In Stanza 1, God
Abraham to "kill me a son ".
God wants the killing done on
Highway 61. Abram, the original name of the biblical Abraham, is also
the name of Dylan's own father.
Abraham in Islam
* Abraham\'s Gate at
Abraham in History and Tradition
Book of Abraham
Bosom of Abraham
Gathering of Israel
Genealogies of Genesis
* Pearl of Great Price
* Table of prophets of
* The evil Nimrod vs. the righteous
* ^ McCarter 2000 , p. 8.
* ^ A B Levenson 2012 , p. PA8.
* ^ Ska 2009 , pp. 26–31.
* ^ McNutt 1999 , pp. 41–42.
* ^ Ska 2006 , pp. 227–28, 260.
* ^ Moore & Kelle 2011 , pp. 18–19.
* ^ Dever 2002 , p. 98 and fn.2.
* ^ Thompson 2002 , pp. 23–24.
* ^ Pitard 2001 , p. 27.
* ^ Ska 2009 , p. 260.
* ^ Enns 2012 , p. 26.
* ^ A B Ska 2006 , pp. 217, 227–28.
* ^ Carr & Conway 2010 , p. 193.
* ^ Ska 2009 , p. 43.
* ^ A B Ska 2009 , p. 44.
* ^ Peters 2010 , pp. 170–71.
* ^ Levenson 2012 , p. 3.
Sanhedrin 65b, 67b
* ^ Azulai,
Abraham (1685). חסד לאברהם, מעין
חמישי, נהר נא (IN HEBREW). AMSTERDAM . RETRIEVED 23 APRIL
* ^ Peters 2010 , p. 171.
* ^ Firestone, Reuven, Encyclopedia of World History – Abraham
* ^ Caxton, William. "Abraham". The Golden Legend. Internet
Medieval Source Book. Retrieved 3 April 2014.
* ^ Holweck 1924 .
* ^ Peters 2003 , p. PA9.
* ^ Levenson 2012 , p. PA200.
* ^ Mecca, Martin Lings, c. 2004
* ^ A B For a very thorough online collection of links to artwork
Abraham see: Artwork Depicting Scenes from Abraham\'s Life
Accessed 25 March 2011
* ^ A B Exum 2007 , p. 135.
* ^ Journal of Early Christian Studies, Leonard Victor Rutgers, The
Iconography of the
Sarcophagus of Junius Bassus (review of Malbon
book), Volume 1, Number 1, Spring 1993, pp. 94–96; for Janson it is
also the "finest Early Christian sarcophagus".
* ^ or 1595, see Elsner, p. 86n.
* ^ Abraham\'s Farewell to Ishmael. George Segal. Miami Art Museum.
Collections: Recent Acquisitions. Accessed 10 September 2014.
* ^ "
Patriarch in Art – Iconography and Literature".
Christian Iconography – a project of
Georgia Regents University
Georgia Regents University .
* ^ Boguslawski, Alexander. "The Holy Trinity". Rollins.edu.
Retrieved 3 April 2014.
* ^ Kierkegaard 1980 , pp. 155–56.
* ^ "Highway 61 Revisited" Retrieved 25 March 2011.
* ^ "Rolling Stone\'s 500 Greatest Songs of All Time". Archived
from the original on 13 September 2008. Retrieved 8 August 2008.
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Michael D. The Oxford Companion to the Bible. Oxford University Press.
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Testament: A Very Short Introduction.
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Evolution of Adam. Baker Books. ISBN 978-1-58743-315-3 . Exum, Jo
Cheryl (2007). Retellings: The
Bible in Literature, Music, Art and
Brill Publishers . ISBN 90-04-16572-X . Finkelstein, Israel ;
Silberman, Neil Asher (2002). The
Bible Unearthed: Archaeology\'s New
Vision of Ancient Israel and the Origin of Sacred Texts. Simon &
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Abraham : Culture, Memory,
and History in the Hebrew Bible.
Oxford University Press
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0-19-803959-X . Hill, Andrew E.; Walton, John H. (2010). A Survey of
the Old Testament. Zondervan. pp. 2024–30. ISBN 978-0-310-59066-8 .
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Saints. B. Herder Book Co. Hubbard,
David Allan; Sanford La Sor,
Frederic William; Bush (1996). Old Testament Survey: The Message,
Form, and Background of the Old Testament. Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing
. ISBN 0-8028-3788-3 . Hughes, Jeremy (1990). Secrets of the Times.
Continuum. Kierkegaard, Søren (1980). The Concept of Anxiety: A
Simple Psychologically Orienting Deliberation on the Dogmatic Issue of
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Patriarch in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Princeton University
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Trees. Oxford, United Kingdom: George Ronald. ISBN 0-85398-533-2 .
May, Dann J (December 1993). "The Bahá\'í Principle of Religious
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Amsterdam University Press. pp. 8–10. ISBN 978-90-5356-503-2
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Israel. Westminster John Knox Press. ISBN 978-0-664-22265-9 . Mills,
Watson E. (1998). Mercer Commentary on the Bible, Volume 1; Volume 8.
Mercer University Press . ISBN 0-86554-506-5 . Moore, Megan Bishop;
Kelle, Brad E. (2011). Biblical History and Israel\'s Past. Eerdmans.
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Guide for Jews and Christians.
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Oxford History of the Biblical World. Oxford University Press. p. 27.
ISBN 978-0-19-513937-2 . Shea, William H. (2000). "Chronology of the
Old Testament". In Freedman,
David Noel; Myers, Allen C. Eerdmans
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30–31, 260. ISBN 978-3-16-149905-0 . link pp. 30–31 Taherzadeh,
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Historical Abraham. Valley Forge, Pa:
Trinity Press International .
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Father Abraham: Jewish Roots of the Christian Faith. Massachusetts:
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